When it comes to looking your best, you simply can’t have a wrinkle or a weak pleat. A traditional iron that uses high heat alone and will give you sharp creases and pleats, but in inexperienced hands can also burn your clothing and is even a potential fire hazard.
Plus: You really need to put a damp towel on your clothing to get the best results from a standard iron so, why not use the best tool for the job? I’m talking about a steam iron. A steam iron is the best of both in one handheld appliance.
It can easily handle setting a sharp, crisp crease or easily melt away wrinkles with hot steam for a quick improvement in the clothing department.
Now with such a variety of available models on the market today, how do you select the best steam iron for your money? Well, we have created a handy Top 10 list of the best steam irons as we see it. Let’s get started with the steam iron that takes the top spot.
10 Best Steam Irons for 2020
Solid Second Place
Oliso Pro TG1600
Expensive but Worth
Aicok Steam Iron
1. Pur Steam – Best Overall
If you are looking for a professional-grade steam iron at an affordable price, this may be the model for you. It features plenty of heat with a 1700watt heating element with rapid, even heat ability, and scratch-free stainless-steel soleplate.
The true axial positioning and alignment of the steam holes give you the perfect amount of steam with less chance of cooling the soleplate too much. Dial-in the perfect temperature and steam amount with an easy to use thermostatic dial and keep the soleplate clean with a self-clean setting.
- This steam iron has a three-way automatic shut-off feature to reduce the chance of accidents.
- It has plenty of heat for heavier fabrics.
- This model features fewer steam holes to reduce the chances of leakage and cooling.
- It may heat up faster than other models.
- You can also use this steam iron on vertical garments and drapes as a handheld steamer.
- The long cord is not retractable.
- There are some complaints about leakage.
2. Rowenta DW5080 – Solid Second Place
Do a little research on steam irons, and Rowenta is a name brand that will pop up on just about every search. They seem to have a solid reputation when it comes to making quality, dependable steam irons. Now with that said, the DW5080 model features a stainless-steel soleplate with a precision tip and 400 steam holes and 1700 watts of power.
A vertical steam button and a steam burst feature allow you to expand your ironing abilities beyond just your clothing. This model also features an easy-fill large capacity water tank to reduce time refilling.
- This model features a three-way auto-shutoff for safety.
- You can use tap water in the steam tank with no issues.
- It has an anti-calcium build-up system.
- The precision tip allows you to get in tight spots better.
- Large temperature selections for delicate fabrics.
- Some complaints that the cleaning feature doesn’t work well.
- Some have experienced leakage.
- The cord is not retractable.
The double-layer ceramic soleplate ensures a reliable and evenly distributed heat while offering a surface gentle enough for our most delicate fabrics. The heating element is controlled with nine programmed heat settings and enough power to tackle your heaviest fabrics.
The LED display gives you all the details needed so you can know that you are using the best temperature on the clothing fabric, and the multiple steam features give you plenty of control.
- Nine preset temperature settings.
- It has an LED display.
- It has a three-stage auto-shutoff feature for added safety.
- It is more powerful than many models.
- It may offer considerably more steam than some of the other brands.
- Some complaints about consistency and durability.
- Although it is 1800 watts, it may not do well with heavier fabrics.
- There were complaints about the amount of steam produced not being enough to remove deep wrinkles.
You may know the CHI name brand from their renowned hairstyling flat irons, so it would make sense to bring that technology into a steam iron, and here it is. Featuring 1700 watts and titanium infused ceramic soleplate, this steam iron is designed to get the job done right.
The spray blast and adjustable steam settings control the over 300 steam holes with the precision you need to get great results. The comfort designed handle and easy to understand dial controls help you select the perfect temperature for any fabric.
- It has a ceramic soleplate that is titanium infused for additional strength.
- This iron offers an extra-long 10’ cord.
- The design of the iron is futuristic and stylish.
- It has an anti-drip feature and a steam blast.
- It has built-in safety features that include a three-way shutoff.
- The ceramic plate may not be as easily cleaned as one might be led to believe.
- This steam iron seems to have some reliability issues.
- Some complaints that the soleplate discolors after a couple of uses.
- This steam iron is a little more expensive than others.
The Black and Decker name crosses many small appliances and is well known for being dependable and efficient. The same can be said for this steam iron, and it is not the most expensive model on the market today but is a quality unit and can help you easily get through your ironing chore.
Featuring a stainless-steel soleplate and 1500 watts of power, you can easily iron out many different fabrics with ease. You may also like the LED digital display that you may find on some of the more expensive steam irons.
- This unit features variable steam control and can handle vertical steaming of items.
- It has safety auto-shutoff.
- There is a flashing display to announce the Iron is up to temperature.
- This steam iron is affordable.
- It features an easy-grip handle.
- It may be a little heavy for some.
- There are some complaints that this steam iron fails prematurely.
- The digital display and temperature setting controls may not be what you are expecting.
6. Oliso Pro TG1600 – Expensive but Worth
This steam Iron has some features you won’t find on others like the itouch scorch guards that you can raise and lower to prevent burning delicate fabrics. The triple play extra steam feature and detailer tip give you the ability to produce professional-grade ironing in the comfort of your laundry room.
A stainless-steel rapid heat soleplate is ready in seconds, and the 1800 watts of power enables you to steam press the thickest fabrics.
- It has retractable scorch guards.
- The detailers tip is great for pleats and creases.
- The retro yellow color is stylish.
- It has an easy-fill tank and spot steamer function.
- This steam iron is fairly expensive.
- It may be heavier than others.
- The reliability is questionable regarding the scorch protectors.
7. Shark Professional – Best
We all know Shark makes vacuums, but they also make other things, including steam irons. This is a simple no-nonsense steam iron that packs 1800 watts of power and a large capacity water tank that makes plenty of hot wrinkle removing steam.
It may lack some of the finer detail features but is not a slacker for the average joes ironing needs. You find this steam iron just right for your household needs.
- This unit is less than 4lbs in weight.
- It has 1800 watts of power and a stainless soleplate.
- It has one-touch fabric selector controls.
- It is reasonably priced.
- There may be some issues with the push-button steam feature.
- Some said the tank started leaking in a few weeks.
Like the saying says, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” well, that applies to this classic steam iron. From the classic design and style this is a true old school steam iron that may outperform many of the new models on the market.
It features an aluminum soleplate with a non-stick coating that easily glides over any fabric and helps reduce the irons’ overall weight. It has an illuminated power light, so you will always know when it’s on, and it has auto-shutoff and a dedicated off button for peace of mind.
The easy to read old school temperature dial coincides with the provided fabric/ temp guide on the body of the iron, and you can easily switch from a steam iron to dry ironing with a switch.
- Inexpensive on any budget.
- It has a classic style and design.
- This unit offers an anti-drip feature.
- The long cord pivots for added maneuverability.
- It is lower wattage than some of the newer models.
- It is not a self-cleaning model.
- You can’t see the water level in the tank.
9. Sunbeam Turbo – Best
This is a 1500-watt steam iron that may be a perfect choice for a typical household steam iron. With the flick of a switch, you can go from steam to dry ironing, and the large stainless-steel soleplate will glide smoothly on any surface.
While this steam iron will get the job done, it may be better suited to homeowner use as it lacks some of the tailoring features some of the other steam irons offer.
- It can steam vertically.
- It does offer some steam features like a shot of steam.
- This unit is a self-cleaning steam iron.
- It has a 10’ swivel cord.
- Not as much heat wattage as others.
- The long cord is not retractable.
- It may spit water and not produce enough steam.
10. Aicok Steam Iron – Best Value
This name brand may not be on the tip of your tongue, but that doesn’t mean that this is a cheap steam iron. It’s got a ton of features and a very reasonable price.
It features plenty of power with 1700 watts and adjustable steam settings. As a bonus, this economical unit has a long cord that is fully retractable for ease of storage.
- This is a self-cleaning steam iron.
- It has a large water tank for extended use.
- It offers a five-range temperature setting control.
- You can use this steam iron vertically.
- Not well known.
- Some may not care for the ceramic soleplate.
- A few complaints about leakage.
Things to Consider Before You Buy a Steam Iron
Q: Do You Need to Put Crease in Your Pants?
If you need to put in or maintain creases in your pants or create super crisp cuffs on your dress shirts, then you need a Steam iron and not just a clothing steamer. A steamer alone cannot get you this premiere finished look. You need to have the high heat element of a steam iron to press in the finishing touches like pleats and perfect collars.
Q: Auto Shut-Off Mode
If you don’t know how to use a steam iron properly, trust me, you will want to learn how and not on your expensive clothing. A lack of knowledge can quickly cost you some of your favorite clothing and leave you with burns as well.
Irons of any kind are extremely hot and will burn anything, including you, your clothes, and can start a house fire if left unattended. These are not an appliance that you should just “wing it” when learning to use, you should practice with and supervise the next generation as they learn to use.
You may want to consider a steam iron with an auto shut-off feature to help prevent many of these possible bad situations.
Q: How Often Are You Going Need to Use the Iron?
If you only pull out the iron for use on a special occasion or once in a while, then you may not want to spend a major amount of money on an iron, or you could just take the piece of clothing you need to be pressed to the cleaners. Some people will never use an iron, and it usually shows in their clothing choices, but this type of appliance is not for everyone. Think about your own needs and then the rest of your family’s needs when considering the best iron for your needs.
Q: What is the Best Soleplate or Iron Surface?
The soleplate is the contact surface of the iron, and they come in a variety of materials, including ceramic, stainless steel, non-stick, cast iron, and some others too.
Old school irons were simply an iron shape made from cast iron you heated on the stovetop or in a fire, and they served the purpose when materials were heavier, and fabrics were limited to cotton and wool.
Today you can choose from a variety of soleplate surfaces, and it may depend on the fabrics included in your wardrobe as to the best choice for you.
For this review, we will keep it to the three most commonly found, stainless steel, ceramic, and non-stick types of soleplates.
A ceramic soleplate will conduct heat well, eliminate static electricity, and reduce the sticking of some fabrics when using a higher temperature.
- Stainless Steel
Probably the most common soleplate surface available today and with good reason. Stainless is a good conductor of heat and evenly distribute the heat through the surface. These soleplates are durable and less fragile than ceramic and are easier to clean and maintain, and they will not rust and stain clothing.
- Non-Stick Surface
This is a coating that is put onto many types of soleplate surfaces to help eliminate the steam iron from sticking to your clothing and smoother flow over the garment.
Q: Other things to Consider
Length of the cord, the weight of the steam iron, does it have an ergonomic design, how easy is it to fill the water tank, how many steam holes doe the iron have? Is the steam iron self-cleaning? Other features may be specific to a particular brand or manufacturer, as seen in the product details.
How Do You Properly Use A Steam Iron?
You need to start by reading the steam irons user guide and the clothing label for recommended steam iron temperature settings.
Every steam iron and piece of clothing you intend to use it on will have different requirements and suggestions from the manufacturers to help you get the best possible outcome.
- Fill the water tank and plug in the Iron.
- Read the label on the garment.
- You should always use the lowest possible heat setting.
- Use an ironing board for a smooth surface.
- Do Not try to dry the garment with the Steam iron. It will be a little damp when you are done ironing it.
- You may need to spray additional moisture on to the garment for deep wrinkles.
- Do Not allow the steam iron to sit on the fabric for any length of time as it will burn the fabric.
- Make sure to stand the steam iron on the heal when you set it down to prevent burning anything.
- Use caution when using the steam iron as it is extremely hot and will burn whatever it touches.
Ironing is a life skill everyone should have at their disposal. You can save a lot of money throughout a lifetime if you can iron well, as you will not need to pay someone to do it for you.
Although many fabrics claim to be wrinkle-free and will never need to be ironed, you will never get that crisp, finished, professional look from these types of fabrics. You will also not get pristine creases or stiff perfect collars if you use a garment steamer without an iron.
Take the time to learn to use a steam iron, and you may be pleasantly surprised at how easy you can learn to do it. It will take some practice, but the improvement in your outward appearance may help you land that dream job or impress a significant other.