The SmartFlow technology ensures that the steam plate is heated up to an optimal temperature. This way, the plate remains safe for all types of fabrics and prevents the occasional wet spots. It can be used vertically and horizontally.
The continuous steaming time is lower than advertised.
What the Philips GC362/86 handheld garment steamer lacks in steaming time, the model more than makes for up with its well-thought-out design, excellent functionality, and solid versatility. Aside from making your clothes look good, the appliance just as well removes odours and kills bacteria.
Heat-resistant storage bag, fabric brush, safety glove
The water tank is removable, so it is easy to clean and refill under the tap. The locking trigger keeps you and your clothes safe. The 3-metre cord and a flat stable base make the steamer practical and convenient. The pleat attachment is perfect for trouser creases.
For a handheld steamer, the model is a bit large.
The Tefal DT8150 is an equally great travel model and household appliance. For a handheld garment steamer, it is fast and powerful, perfect for last-minute touch-ups as well as for everyday use. The ceramic coating of the soleplate gives you great results on all fabrics.
~ 9 min
Door hook, fabric brush, pleat attachment, steam bonnet, travel bag
Incorporating a no-leak silicone seal, this model can be stored and transported with a full tank. With its 15-minute continuous steam output, this handheld appliance lets you steam multiple garments at once. The heat-up time takes just 20 seconds.
The cable is a bit cumbersome.
Frequent travellers will not regret going with the Dodocool New LCD Smart Clothes Steamer. Despite its 2000-watt output, the model weighs just 1.4 kilogrammes, enabling hassle-free transportation. What's more, between 2 steam output modes, you can smooth out light and heavy fabrics alike.
2 modes: 25 g/min and 35 g/min
The 1500-millilitre tank lets you steam for 50 minutes straight without re-filling it. The included fabric brush attachment opens the weave, making sure that the outgoing steam can penetrate the fibres. With its help, the finish always looks smooth, even when you're dealing with thick fabrics.
The unit feels a little wobbly.
The Tefal IT3440 Pro Style Steam will let you steam various garments pretty much anywhere you feel comfortable. With the company's patented vertical support panel, you'll have no problems smoothing out creases and wrinkles on shirts, dresses, coats, and more. The telescopic pole will also let you steam household upholstery.
Hanger hook, brush attachment, telescopic pole, hanger with clips
With its 32 g/min steam output, the model sanitises garments, kills bacteria, disinfects and sterilises them, removes odours, and refreshes fabrics. You can work not just with clothes but also with curtains, bedding items, different furniture pieces, and so forth.
The travel hanger doesn't have a rotating hook.
PIRATECH Portable Clothes Steamer is equally good at home and on the road. You can replace its already considerable 260-millilitre tank with a 500-millilitre bottle, increasing the usage time twofold. The leakproof and splash-resistant housing supports vertical as well as horizontal steaming.
Gift box, travel bag pouch, portable folding hanger, dust removal & creaser clip
Go With the Flow
On paper, the Philips GC362/86 is your run-of-the-mill handheld steamer. Most of its specs do not necessarily disappoint nor impress. But that's just how it is on paper. Take a closer look and you'll find that the model actually has quite a lot going for it. At the end of the day, it isn't about the number of characteristics nor about the specs. More often than not, it is about execution. And that's where the steamer edges out a solid chunk of its competition.
That execution starts with the SmartFlow technology. In layman's terms, the technology ensures that the steam plate is heated up to an optimal temperature. This way, the plate remains safe for all types of fabrics and prevents the occasional wet spots. The heated steam plate makes it easier to press the fabric while steaming horizontally, giving you improved steaming results. All in all, the steamer is an equally fitting everyday solution for your standard garments and for delicate fabrics like silk.
By the way, the aforementioned horizontal steaming isn't your only option. Though it is the optimal choice if you need the right results in those difficult-to-iron areas such as collars and cuffs. But if you simply want to quickly de-wrinkle and refresh your clothes without using an ironing board, vertical steaming is the way to go.
Where Ergonomics Meet Functionality
Admittedly, some things about this handheld garment steamer aren't that impressive. The continuous steaming time of 8 minutes isn't too shabby for a handheld steamer but it isn't remarkable either. Plus, despite the advertised number, it doesn't always give you those full 8 times. The person to blame for the limited steaming time is mostly the 70-millilitre water tank.
Then again, we can't really hold it that much against the steamer. The numbers may seem unimpressive out of context but keep in mind that we're dealing with a particularly compact appliance. It adds up to 38.2 x 15.2 x 13.6 centimetres in overall dimensions and weighs less than 1.3 kilograms. Add to that the ergonomic handle and you have yourself a practical and convenient device that you could use for hours on end.
The steam output here is fairly respectable. The electric pump that the model comes equipped with automatically provides you with a continuous steam output of up to 24 g/min, just the thing you need for quick and easy de-wrinkling.
In conclusion, what the Philips GC362/86 handheld garment steamer lacks in steaming time, the model more than makes for up with its well-thought-out design, excellent functionality, and solid versatility. Aside from making your clothes look good, the appliance removes odours and kills 99.9% of bacteria.
|Last updated price||£56.22|
A Steamer With no Chill
The Tefal DT8150 is a solid all-around product with its highs and lows. For our taste, we would say that the highs definitely outweigh the lows, which is why we've included this product in our review. That said, we would still like to address one or two of its flaws. More than anything else, we aren't the biggest fans of the model's bulkier profile. The whole thing adds up to 11.5 x 14.5 x 27.5 centimetres, so it isn't particularly tall but a tad too wide and inconveniently shaped to be comfortable.
On the other hand, it is surprisingly light. With a weight of 1.07 kilograms, it is arguably one of the most lightweight handheld garment steamers on the market and definitely one of the most lightweight steamers in its price range.
Now, as for the model's highs, we would like to start with its fast 40-second heat-up time. Sure, it may not be that much of a change compared to the usual deal, but even some of the most expensive standing garment steamers seldom feature this kind of heat-up time, so we definitely couldn't overlook this parameter. The continuous steaming time here ranges somewhere around 9 minutes. It's nothing we haven't seen in the aforementioned standing steamers but, for a handheld model, it is actually rather impressive.
We've been criticising the model's appearance earlier but it was probably largely influenced by the 200-millilitre water tank. And if it wasn't for the tank, the appliance wouldn't have been able to deliver 9 minutes of continuous steaming time. So, as it is always the case, you have to sacrifice one thing in favour of the other.
Bring It With You
Again, we've been critical of the steamer's appearance, but it's not like we don't like a single thing about its design. On the contrary, there is a lot to like here. The aforementioned water tank is removable, so it is easy to fill and clean. The locking trigger keeps you and your clothes safe. Finally, the 3-metre cord and a flat stable base make the whole thing practical and convenient.
With garment steamers, the steam output is always a priority. And, for a mini handheld model, 26 g/min is nothing short of excellent. Add to that the appliance's fast heat-up time and you'll be able to refresh and sanitise your clothes in no time at all. The soleplate that heats up to 140°C reduces the chance of drips, so your clothes will be ready to wear straight after steaming.
Aside from the steamer, you get a nice little door hook that will let you hang your clothes just about anywhere. You also get a fabric brush that helps with thicker fabrics, a steam bonnet that helps with delicate fabrics, a pleat attachment for trouser creases, and a nice little travel bag for convenient storage and transportation.
All in all, the Tefal DT8150 is a portable appliance that's equally great for travelling and home use. For a mini handheld garment steamer, it is fast and powerful, perfect for last-minute touch-ups as well as for everyday use. The ceramic coating of the soleplate gives you great results on all fabrics.
|Last updated price||£59.38|
Dodocool 2020 New LCD Smart
Let's be Smart About It
The Dodocool New LCD Smart Clothes Steamer is pretty cool, but not necessarily quite as smart as the name would have us believe. We're fine with that though. We don't need steamers to be smart, we need them to be effective and efficient, which is pretty much the case with this model. The 'smart' part comes from the LCD screen that this handheld appliance adopts. With this screen, the model tells you whether/when the heating is complete and lets you switch between two steam output modes: 25 g/min and 35 g/min. With the first mode, you can smooth out everyday creases, whilst the second mode will make sure you can handle the most stubborn wrinkles.
Considering the model's handheld design, you would not really think that this appliance is the most powerful one. But, drawing 2000 watts, the model is a lot more capable than 9/10 handheld garment steamers. Because this steamer's working with 2000 watts, the heat-up time is reduced ~twofold, with the model pre-heating in 20 seconds tops, whereas its peers usually take somewhere around 40-45 seconds.
With the new and upgraded version, the nozzles have been improved as well, producing ~80% more steam (relative to the previous model) and letting you get into hard-to-reach fabric areas without compromising power or steam output. Owing to these nozzles, you won't leave more than 0.01% of bacteria on your favourite clothes. You'll also be able to remove odours.
No-Leak Silicone Seal
The people behind this appliance are calling it a smart update and we can see where they're coming from. With its help, you can smooth out linen, fibre, nylon, cowboy, cotton, silk, and more fabrics. Again, whilst the first steam output mode will allow you to work with shirts, blouses, and such, the second, more powerful mode will have no trouble even with heavy coats.
What's interesting is the steam lock feature. Using this feature, the model stretches its continuous team output up to 15 minutes. Steaming multiple clothes at once, the feature lets you handle the largest laundry piles within 10-15 minutes tops.
Where this product falls a bit flat is with the cord. A little cumbersome, the cord makes moving this otherwise convenient handheld appliance a little uncomfortable.
Other than that, the Dodocool New LCD Smart Clothes Steamer will prove equally practical and effective at home as well as during travels. Plus, the unique leak-proof design, equipped with no-leak silicone seal, lets you store and transport the steamer even with a full tank without worrying about leaks.
|Last updated price||$0.00|
Tefal IT3440 Pro Style Steam
1500-Millilitre Water Tank
The Tefal IT3440 Pro Style Steam is not portable. Hanging with upright steamers, this model is not something you can take with you. Of course, with its upright design come multiple advantages and disadvantages. Aside from the appliance not being quite as portable as handheld models, its large footprint also requires more storage space than the steamer's more compact counterparts. But, as you would imagine, its size also entails certain advantages.
For starters, where handheld steamers' tanks usually cap at 200-300 millilitres, the model's stretches a whopping 1500 millilitres. Needless to say, with this massive tank, this appliance lets you steam practically countless clothes and garments without re-filling the tank once. With the model's continuous steam output lasting ~50 minutes, even the most intensive steaming sessions will stand no chance.
Still, what sells the product first and foremost is not that. What sells it is the Press & Steam feature. Technically speaking, this is less of a feature and more of a vertical support panel. Patented by Tefal, this panel provides a convenient flat surface, enabling effortless one-handed steaming and ensuring consistent results.
As per usual, the package also includes a hanger hook, brush attachment, telescopic pole, and a hanger with clips, so you can steam clothes anywhere you want - the vertical panel and the attachments that come with the appliance will make sure you can do so without purchasing separate accessories or relying on some support structure at home. We especially like the telescopic pole. First, you can collapse it, enabling compact storage. Second, with this pole, you can steam household upholstery like carpets, curtains, and bedding items.
The model's heat-up time pushes 45 seconds, which would have been middling if this steamer were handheld. But, as far as upright steamers go, 45 seconds is excellent. What's also excellent is the three variable steam settings that this model is working with. Between these settings, you can steam delicate and durable garments alike, whilst the XL steam head, delivering 30 grams of steam per minute, will be smoothing out the toughest creases.
The unit feels a little wobbly, that's the one mishap we cannot forgive quite as easily based on the model's size alone. Nevertheless, even including this little flaw, the Tefal IT3440 Pro Style Steam is relentless, steaming different garments like nobody's business without forcing you to take unnecessary breaks.
|Last updated price||$0.00|
PIRATECH Portable Clothes Steamer
Making Every Second Count
The PIRATECH Portable Clothes Steamer is everything that the name suggests and then some, for good measure. Measuring 26.6 x 24.8 x 13.7 centimetres and reaching 1.2 kilogrammes on the weight scales, the model is not necessarily as lean as the previous handheld steamers that we've reviewed above and not quite as lightweight. Nevertheless, this steamer can still make the portable claim. Whilst its footprint is not very modest, neither are the model's specs.
To get the proverbial ball rolling, this handheld appliance reduces the heat-up time to 15 seconds, which is not a huge difference from the usual 25-40 seconds but, day after day, month after month, year after year, these seconds add up and end up making a noticeable difference. Plus, when you're running late, every second counts, and this model understands that unlike most handheld garment steamers.
Where the continuous steaming time is concerned, this impressive specimen lasts 15 minutes, which is not shabby at all considering its value-oriented disposition. The 260-millilitre water tank is not shabby either. What's more, you can remove the tank and attach any ordinary 500-millilitre water bottle instead. This way, you can go from 15 minutes of continuous steaming time to 30 minutes, doubling the usage time without bothering with fiddly adapters.
32 Grammes Per Minute
Despite boasting multiple impressive specs, the model's biggest selling point is not among the ones we've listed above. No, its biggest selling point is the 32-gramme per minute steam output. With this output, the steamer is excellent at sanitising and killing bacteria, disinfecting and sterilising them, removing odours, and refreshing fabrics on clothes, curtains, home furniture, bedding items, and more. With its leakproof and splashproof design, the model enables both vertical and horizontal steaming.
Also, we don't mind the package. On the contrary, we fancy it quite a lot. We're not necessarily crazy about the gift box since garment steamers do not make the best gifts (unless they do?) but the travel bag pouch is nice and so are the portable folding hanger and the dust removal and creaser clip. The one problem we have with them is that the hanger does not have a rotating hook. Besides that, there's almost no chance that the PIRATECH Portable Clothes Steamer will disappoint you, both at home and on the road (assuming the proverbial roads will open sometime soon, fingers crossed).
|Last updated price||£36.99|
What Is a Garment Steamer?
If you want to make a good impression on everyone, a rule of thumb is to wear neat and clean clothes. With that in mind, the market provides many good household appliances, with a garment steamer being one of them. As the name suggests, a garment steamer is designed to fight wrinkles and refresh clothes by treating them with hot steam. Unlike conventional irons that work from the mains, fabric steamers are more convenient to operate, weigh less (on average), and offer better manoeuvrability. Plus, as they use steam, there's almost no risk of damaging clothes, even if your wardrobe contains mostly silk and fabric dresses.
Yet, the biggest advantage of garment steamers lies in the fact that they not only allow for removing wrinkles and making your clothes perfectly smooth but also killing germs and bed bugs which often inhabit bedclothes. This makes them especially useful for people with allergies as well as for those who may need to sterilise certain things from time to time. Garment steamers come in a variety of designs and shapes and can perform a variety of different functions. To make the choice less tricky for novice users who do not know a lot about garment steamers, we've selected the top-5 of models so you can choose one that will be right for you.
Another appliance which may come in handy for cleaning not only your bedding but also furniture and even a car is a steam cleaner. In case you don't own one yet, make sure to read our best steam cleaners reviews.
What Features to Compare
Type and Use
There are several types of clothes steamers available today. The most popular one is an upright garment steamer. It is used to de-wrinkle and smooth clothes that are hung on a hanger or attached to some pole. The beauty of upright garment steamers is that they allow for a quick freshening of clothes including upholstery that is impossible to iron in any other way. Upright models are compact in size and take very little space; they offer excellent manoeuvrability. The second type is a steamer with a base. This type of garment steamer, obviously, is bulkier but it is also more versatile allowing you to iron almost all types of clothes and fabrics that you have in your place. Generally, using these garment steamers requires an ironing board too.
Power and Steam Output
The next two features to consider are the power and steam output. These two parameters determine how fast you'll be able to smooth and de-wrinkle your clothes. It's crucial that the steam flow is not weak and allows you to finish ironing in less time. 1300-1800 watts are considered the ultimate performance with the minimal steam output of 25 g/min. It goes without saying that the more powerful the steamer is the faster the steam will be produced. Though the difference in time is not huge, it's still nice not to waste time waiting. So make sure to check out the heat up time as well.
Capacity and Steaming Time
Tank capacity is also important. The bigger it is the more time you will be able to iron without having to refill it. On average, tank capacity featured on garment steamers varies from 200 ml up to 2 litres. Whether you need a steamer for home use or you're looking for a portable thing suitable for travel as well, the market offers multiple options to choose from. Like we said before, the steaming time is linked to capacity.
Nozzles and Accessories
Finally, consider the package: what nozzles and how many accessories come supplied with the unit. What is also important to pay attention to is the quality of materials. To reduce the price of their products, many manufacturers produce nozzles from plastic, but if you want them to serve you longer, we highly recommend considering those made of durable aluminium or stainless steel. Some of the nozzles may also include an additional heating element which allows them to heat up faster and better removing stubborn creases. These nozzles are usually connected to a steaming station by a special hose, through which goes the steam; the longer they are, the easier it is to move the steamer over clothes. Last but not least, check out what brushes come included. Many of them can be really helpful, allowing you to clean not only your blouses, dresses, and pants but also heavy fur winter coats.
1. Mariette Mifflin Before You How to Buy a Clothes Iron, Steamer or Press, About.
2. Kelly Burgess How to Buy a Garment Steamer, ConsumerSearch. August 10, 2015.
3. Garment Steamer Buying Guide, eBay. February 18, 2014.
4. 3 Tips for Choosing a Portable Garment Steamer, DoItYourself.com.
5. Rebecca Ciaramidaro Garment steamer buying guide, Choice. March 21, 2014.
6. Mariette Mifflin Common Uses for a Garment Steamer, About.
7. How to Use a Clothes Steamer, wikiHow.
8. Irons vs. Steamers, eBay. June 9, 2014.