Any iron can help produce wrinkle-free garments whether you spend $10 or $100, but the devil is in the details. The best irons glide smoothly and steam clothes without leaking, and they can stand up to daily use. A bigger investment can usually buy a little more power and some additional features such as vertical steaming or an LED display.
Looking for the best steamer or ironing board? We have picks in those categories as well.
01 of 08
Black+Decker’s Allure ticks all the boxes when it comes to clothing irons. Experts say it’s effective, easy to use and a good value, especially compared to other irons in its price range. Owners agree, saying they get a lot for their money with the Allure.
Among the Allure’s features are five temperature settings that indicate recommended steam levels. However, users can ultimately control steam and temperature separately to accommodate all fabric types. A vertical operating function lets the... iron double as a steamer for hanging garments or curtains, and a steam surge function releases an impressive blast for tough wrinkles. Some users do warn that the dark water tank makes it hard to judge water levels, but they say a large opening makes for easy filling. There is no cord-swivel attachment or dedicated on/off switch, which some users miss.
The Allure has a scratch-resistant stainless-steel sole plate and comes with a limited two-year warranty. Most users say it feels durable, but some say it stopped heating up after a few months. A three-way auto shutoff kicks in if the iron is no longer active either for eight minutes on the heel or 30 seconds on the soleplate or sides. There is also an upgraded option with a digital display, if that is important to you.
02 of 08
Black+Decker has another winner in the D2030 Digital Advantage. Though slightly pricier than our top pick, this iron earns top marks from thousands of reviewers who big fans of its impressive features and performance.
As its name suggests, the D2030 has an easy-to-read digital LCD display. There are five temperature settings, a comfort-grip handle and an auto-clean mode. This iron’s biggest claim to fame, however, is its steaming abilities. The manufacturer touts that it churns out 30 percent... more steam than comparable irons, great for tackling those frustrating, set-in wrinkles. Owners agree that the steam is great, with a good spray option that gets clothing damp but doesn’t soak it. Some grouse that the water tank is too dark to see the water level easily, though, and a few others say the iron sometimes dribbles or spits water.
The D2030 has a stainless-steel sole plate and comes with a one-year warranty. An automatic shut-off cools the iron if it is left inactive too long – that means just 30 seconds if the iron is left on the sole plate or sides, or eight minutes on the heel.
03 of 08
Cheaper irons are often plagued by reports that they don’t get hot enough, leak too much, or simply don’t iron smoothly. Users are much happier with the Sunbeam Steam Master GCSBCL-202, which they say is a reliable performer at a wallet-friendly price.
The Steam Master boasts more features than irons at similar price points. These include steam bursts for tough wrinkles and vertical steaming for hanging garments; a retractable power cord that stores easily in the iron’s base; and a leak-resistant... water chamber. Users can control the temperature using a dial mounted below the iron’s handle. All in all, reviewers are satisfied with performance and features, saying the iron steams well, glides easily and heats up quickly. Some say the retractable cord can be a bit tricky to use at times and wish for a bigger fill opening, however.
The Steam Master has a three-year limited warranty and there are few durability complaints. It also has a three-way automatic shut-off: left on the sole plate or its side, it shuts off after 30 seconds; left sitting vertically on its base, it will shut off after eight minutes.
04 of 08
Buyers who want top-of-the-line performance (and are willing to pay for it) should look closely at the Rowenta DW9280 Steam Force Professional Electric Steam Iron. Experts say it blasts through wrinkles like no other iron they tested, and most users agree it’s the most effective iron they’ve ever owned.
The Steam Force has 400 steam holes and an integrated electronic steam pump, which injects more steam into clothes than other irons. A sensor also automatically cuts steam once the iron is still... to save on water and power. An LED display tells users when the iron is at the right temperature for various fabrics, and steam adjusts automatically to match. Users love these features and say the Steam Force makes quick work of smoothing any clothing. They also say the water tank is easy to fill, but requires refilling frequently because the iron produces so much steam. Some also complain the colored tank makes it hard to see the fill line. The other main quibble is that at nearly 4 pounds, this iron is fairly heavy.
Made in Germany, the Steam Force has a nonstick, scratch-resistant stainless-steel sole plate and comes with a limited 1-year warranty. Though many users say the iron is hefty and durable, there are scattered complaints of the iron or certain features failing after several months. Like many irons, it has an automatic shutoff that cuts power in 30 seconds if the iron is left on its sole plate or side and eight minutes if left upright.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
Users say the Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot Compact Non-Stick Soleplate Travel Iron is a versatile, effective traveling companion at an unbelievably low price. While it can’t match the performance of full-sized irons, it’s great to have on the road, users say.
The Hot-2-Trot features a dual-voltage system that allows users to choose between 120 and 240 volts—ideal for anyone traveling abroad. There are dry-iron and steam settings, and the variable temperature is easily controlled with a dial. Most users... don’t mind these relatively basic features and say the iron heats up quickly and is easy enough to fill. But some complain that water leaks out of the bottom of the iron too easily, while others note that the awkwardly placed cord makes the iron prone to tipping over from a standing position.
At 1.5 pounds, the Hot-2-Trot is lightweight, and its 7-inch plate is fairly small. Reviewers love that it’s compact enough to be wedged into a suitcase. The iron has a 1-year warranty, and there are some durability complaints. While users say the iron cools down quickly once it’s unplugged, there is no automatic shut-off.
06 of 08
While most buyers don’t think twice about getting a cheap ironing board at a big-box store, users who spend a lot of time ironing say a sturdier board like the Homz Durabilt DX1500 Premium Ironing Board can make the chore a lot less irksome.
The Durabilt’s signature feature is legs that expand to up to 25 inches wide—10 inches beyond the width of the ironing surface—to eliminate any wobbling. Rubber feet add to the board’s stability. Reviewers say the difference in sturdiness between the Durabilt... and other boards is noticeable. They also say the board is smooth to open and adjust; a quick-release paddle eases the job. Top adjustment height is just shy of 40 inches, making it a good pick for taller users as well. There’s also an iron rest with silicone pads and space to hang clothing.
At 54 by 15 inches, the American-made Durabilt is a standard-size board that offers ample surface area. A carrying handle helps make it less awkward to move.
07 of 08
Stand steamers are meant for more heavy-duty use than their portable counterparts, and users say the Conair Compact Upright Fabric Steamer is an effective alternative to spending all day ironing. They also say it’s lighter and less cumbersome than many upright steamers.
Features on the Compact Upright include a foot-activated power switch, a cool-touch nozzle and hose, and a three-piece collapsible garment-hanging pole. A lint remover and bristle brush attachment is included. The tank holds... enough water for up to an hour of continuous steam, which users love; they also say the large tank is easy to remove and fill. Reviewers say the steamer heats up water very quickly, in under a minute, and removes wrinkles from most fabrics short of very thick ones. A few reviewers wish for a longer power cord, and some say they need a more powerful blast of steam.
The Compact Upright has built-in wheels that make it easy to move, but users say it’s still light enough at 9 pounds to carry easily. At about 18 by 12 by 12 inches without the pole extended, it also has a smaller footprint than many upright steamers. It comes with a limited one-year warranty.
08 of 08
A portable steamer is a handy way for business travelers or anyone who can’t stand rumpled clothing to stay looking polished while on the road, and the Epica Handheld Fabric Steamer is among the best you can buy, users say. They recommend it for light- and medium-weight fabrics or anyone who simply hates to iron.
Epica says its steamer heats up in two minutes—some users say it’s actually even faster than that—and will deliver steam for up to 12 minutes without needing to stop and reheat. It also... has an on/off switch—some models must be unplugged to shut off—and an integrated water tank. A fabric brush and lint remover are also included. Reviewers say the power cord is long enough to provide a good reach and the water tank is easy to fill, though several warn that water will splatter or spurt out if they don’t stop a bit short of the fill line.
At just 2 pounds, the Epica steamer is lightweight enough for travel. It’s roughly 9 by 8 by 5 inches and can be stashed in a suitcase, though some reviewers wish for a more compact size.
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