The Best Clothes Steamers

Steaming your clothes is such an easy way to eliminate the wrinkles that steamers are becoming more popular than ever. They come in a variety of sizes and shapes, and nearly every article of clothing can be steamed with ease. You can even find a mini steamer to take it with you in case of emergencies and make sure your clothes always look neat and crisp. When traveling, the hotel room may or may not come equipped with an iron, but even if it does, the time it takes to iron your clothing is astronomical when you compare it to a steamer.

We reviewed dozens of clothes steamers to identify the best of the best. We looked at the portability and water capacity and weighed that with the speed of its heating and the duration of its steam. When we took all these features and more into consideration, we found a very clear picture of the steamers that rose above their peers.

Top Pick

Check out the best of the bunch in this convenient travel steamer!

In our research, we identified the Lemontec Portable Travel Garment Steamer as the clear stand-out. With a fast heating time and a full 9 minutes of continuous use, this small steamer is one you will want to always have on hand.

The 5 Top-Rated Clothes Steamers for 2018

Editor's PicksBrandRating
Best OverallLemontec Portable Travel Garment Steamer 4.7
Runner Upzonpor Portable Steamer for Clothes
4.9
Best Budget BuyHomitt Clothes Steamer4.4
Best Standing SteamerJ-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head4.4
Best Handheld SteamerBeautural Handheld Garment Steamer 4.4

*Ratings are from Amazon at the time of publication and can change

Our Top Pick: Lemontec Portable Travel Garment Steamer

The Lemontec Portable Travel Garment Steamer is perfect to take with you on any of your adventures where you still want to look clean and professional. It’s just over six inches, so you won’t need to worry about how much space it takes and even if you don’t travel, this is still a great choice for any steaming, even around the house. After all, the last thing you need is another huge appliance taking up valuable space.

Depending on how many items you need to steam, you may need to refill this steamer, as it only has a 180 mL water tank. But with a mini, you have to expect that kind of size, and it still offers an impressive 9 minutes of continuous use, so you should be able to get through an item or two before refill. And should you need to refill, it will only be 70 seconds before you’re on your way and steaming again.

With a rating 4.7 and over 1,400 reviews, being satisfied with this steamer will come as no surprise. And if all the bells and whistles and outstanding reviews can’t sway you, maybe the 5-year manufacturer’s warranty will.

Lemontec Portable Travel Garment Steamer Key Features: 

  • 180 mL water capacity; 9 minutes continuous use
  • Automatic shut off for safety
  • Lightweight; only 1.2 pounds

Our Runner-Up Pick: Beautural Handheld Garment Steamer

Our Runner-Up
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Beautural Handheld Garment Steamer

This steamer comes with a lot of bonuses for a lot of extra duty!

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$56.99 USD

The Beautural Handheld Garment Steamer is packed with power so you can get the wrinkles out of your clothes with ease.  Not only does it use 1200W of power, it will heat the water to steam temperature in 35 seconds or less. It also features a steam lock, which allows you to lock the trigger in place for the steam to flow continuously without you getting tired for several items. If you use it continuously, the steam will continue for 14 minutes, by using every bit of its 8.79 ounce water tank. The anti-leak and non spill design allows you to steam horizontal or vertical – even upside down – without leaking water all over your clothes. It automatically shuts off after 8 minutes of inactivity or once it reaches a temperature above its safe range, so you won’t need to worry about wondering if you unplugged the steamer.

The steamer comes with a 90-day money back guarantee and a 1-year warranty, so the risk is minimal. It has a 4.4 rating on Amazon, and at around $25, this is an excellent option.

Beautural Handheld Garment Steamer Key Features: 

  • Anti-leak, no spill design
  • Automatic shut off for safety and inactivity
  • Lint and Fabric Brushes interluded

Best Budget Pick: Homitt Clothes Steamer

Best Budget Pick
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Homitt Clothes Steamer

Try this handheld steamer for a lot of result without spending a lot of money!

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$79.99 USD

The Homitt Clothes Steamer features 8 steam holes allowing a significant amount of steam to vent through. It heats in 90 seconds or less and if used continuously, will lat from 6 to 8 minutes in between refills. The water tank carries 110 mL and is incredibly compact (under 7 inches tall), making it perfect for travel.

The nozzle is designed to include a baffle in an attempt to avoid water spray. However, you will need to make sure you’re holding the steamer at a 45-degree angle to prevent leaks or spills, especially around children because the heated water could definitely scald. With the ability to steam everything from clothes to curtains and table cloths, though, this steamer more than pulls its own weight.

The manufacturer offers a 60-day money back guarantee and a 1-year worry-free promise so you can make this purchase with a safety net. With a rating of 4.2 and a cost of under $20, this is a great steamer to purchase if you still need convincing that a steamer is the way to go.

Homitt Clothes Steamer Key Features:

  • Heats to steam in 60-90 seconds
  • 7.8 ft power cord
  • Automatic shut of for safety and low water

Best Standing Steamer Pick: J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head

Best Standing Steamer
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J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head

If you want a full-sized steamer that will take care of all your steaming needs, look no further!

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$219.00 USD

The J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head is a full sized, standing steamer which means there’s room for more features. One of the biggest ones is the capacity, with 3/4 a gallon water tank this steamer can operate for a full hour and a half between refills. So if you’re looking for a product that will help you do the “iron/steam” pile that’s been growing, this is a solid option.

The carton itself does weigh 18 pounds, but to counteract that con, the manufacturer delivers another huge pro: wheels. The J-2000 comes on four easy roll casters that allow you to take the steamer all over your closet or laundry room (or wherever you steam). The carton is made of high-impact plastic and comes with an adjustable pole allowing you to hang your item directly on the machine to steam.

With over 1,600 reviews on Amazon and a rating of 4.4, this is certainly the stand-out of standing steamers. Using its 1300W of power, the manufacturer suggests this is even powerful enough to steam wallpaper off the walls, so you will likely find plenty of use for this steamer.

J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer with Plastic Steam Head Key Features:

  • 2 minute heat up time
  • 5.5 ft hose with 6 inch steam head
  • 1.5 hour continuous steam

Best Handheld Steamer Pick: zonpor Portable Steamer for Clothes

Best Handheld Steamer
Buy Now
zonpor Portable Steamer for Clothes

This handheld steamer will tackle any job you have without weighing you down!

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$49.99 USD

The zonpor Portable Steamer for Clothes is a great handheld steamer that you won’t mind taking with you wherever you go – it’s only 1.3 pounds. The patented zonpor nozzle design prevents water condensation in the machine and creates a more uniform steam. And no matter what you chose to use it on; clothes, table cloths, plush toys or tapestries – all will benefit from a more uniform steaming.

The machine heats up in 80 seconds or less and will operate continuously for 9 to 11 minutes. There is an automatic shut off for water should the temperature become too high or the water level too low, so you needn’t worry about overheating it.

This zonpor steamer has under 100 reviews on Amazon, but it’s worth mentioning that it still has a rating of 4.9, making it likely to be an appealing steamer.

zonpor Portable Steamer for Clothes Key Features: 

  • 80 second heat up
  • 180 mL water tank
  • 1-year manufacturer warranty

Who Should Buy a Clothes Steamer?

If you’re sick and tired of the long and monotonous task of ironing, then you’re probably a good candidate for picking up a steamer. It’s a handy household item you will likely find irreplaceable after purchase. If you have a lot of business or wrinkle-prone clothing, a steamer may save your sanity come laundry day. A steamer can usually steam a piece of clothing in minutes – regardless of what that item is. And the most appealing part is that you don’t need to remove the clothing to lie flat; you can steam clothing while it’s hanging on the same hanger on which it hangs in the closet.

A steamer is also an excellent solution for the clothes that are dry-clean-only but you only wear a couple hours at a time. You can steam them after use to disinfect and deodorize then hang them completely ready to wear again, whenever that may be. This quick task can save you so much time and money – both of which are precious commodities!

Top Pick

Check out the best of the bunch in this convenient travel steamer!

Important Features to Consider

A clothes steamer should fit your specific needs and to do that it needs to have the features that serve you best. Here’s what to consider when selecting a clothes steamer:

  • Attachments. While the steamer itself may be what you are purchasing, the variety of materials it can steam effectively is often determined by the attachments that are included. If you’re using it on a thicker material that needs a bit extra TLC, a fabric brush can be incredibly helpful. For a delicate fabric, you’ll want to take care and use a softer brush or even no brush, just keep it a few inches away from the material. Other attachments are a lint brush to remove lint or piling and a crease attachment that can create creases in your clothing.
  • Heating time. This is particularly important if you have a handheld steamer, because you may need to refill frequently. Refilling can be annoying, but if you need to do that and wait a long time for your new water to heat up, then you may want to eliminate that steamer from the running immediately.
  • Portability. You will have to determine if your steamer is going to have a fixed home where you bring your clothes to it or if you take your steamer to the clothes. If you only plan on using it occasionally, keep in mind that a lot of people use it a lot more than planned once they actually have it. Another consideration you may want to take is if you attend out of town weddings or business trips, it may prove to be a huge life saver.
  • Size/capacity. Not surprisingly, the bigger the water tank on your steamer the longer you can steam continuously. Also not surprising, though, is how much longer it usually takes a larger water tank to heat up before you can start using it. Bigger tanks may not heat all the water at once, but you can count on a longer wait between bursts of steam or before it is initially ready. You’ll want to weigh which is more important to you, and the answer will usually be based on how much you plan on using your steamer in one sitting. If you plan to steam your wardrobe in one night, then a larger tank may be best for you. If, however, you plan on steaming just one item at a time, then you should consider a smaller steamer.
  • Cord length. Much like the size and capacity, you’ll have to decide what you’re going to use the steamer for (at least primarily) before you decide what your minimum cord length is as well. If you plan on using your steamer on both ends of your closet at one time, then a longer cord will best suit you. If you’re only doing an item or two at a time, then you can probably get away with a shorter cord.
  • Standing vs. handheld vs. mini. Once you determine your preferences to each of the above features you’ll be prepared to choose which type of steamer you want. If you plan to use it frequently and for several items at once, then a standing steamer is probably your best bet. For use in the home for clothes here and there, a handheld will probably best suit your needs. And if you travel and want to keep your business attire looking fresh even when camped out in a hotel, a mini is probably more your speed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a garment steamer and how does it work?

A garment steamer is a machine that will heat water and release the steam through a nozzle. You will place the nozzle onto your clothing (or a few inches away for more delicate materials), and the steam will relax the clothing fibers and eliminate the wrinkles in the fabric.

Most machines will only heat the water just around boiling point (212 degrees F and 100 degrees C) because it may otherwise become a safety concern. If heated much beyond that, the water will convert into steam faster, making the machine less effective; so manufacturers try to avoid that, as well.

Is it better to steam or iron clothes?

The biggest benefit for a steamer is that it removes the wrinkles much faster and with less effort that a traditional iron. By keeping the steamer slightly further from a garment, you can actually use it on more types of fabric than an iron. However, there are still fabrics that you won’t want to use a steamer on either; for example waxed jackets, suede or any material that can melt.

You can use a steamer in place of an iron in most cases, but to add creases, you will usually need to bite the bullet and pull out your iron. Unless, of course, your steamer has a creasing attachment. If you’re concerned, yield to the instructions on the clothing’s label or try with a very small sample at the corner of the garment.

Do garment steamers clean clothes?

Yes! Maybe they don’t clean them in a traditional sense; there are no detergent or soaps. However, the steam’s temperature is plenty hot enough to kill the germs. Most bacteria do not survive above 120 degrees F and for steam to form, the water much heat to 212 degrees F. And even if you still take your clothes into the dry cleaner from time to time, steaming will help you in the times between. After all, you don’t necessarily want the bother of dry cleaning when you only wore an item for a few hours.

And if you’re worried about the odor of your garment, you needn’t be; steaming an article of clothing will also rid the piece of its odors, as well. It will even rid the fabric of the allergens that attract dust mites, making the garment (and your home) a safer environment for your allergic family members.

Can I steam clothes without a steamer?

You can! It’s not as easy and definitely not as effective, but there are a few ways to steam clothes without the use of a steamer. To keep wrinkles from forming, you can store your more wrinkle-prone clothes in your bathroom or the laundry room and use the steam that comes from your shower or off your dryer. Keep in mind, while this won’t be enough to remove wrinkles, it may be enough to prevent them.

Otherwise, hang the clothes directly on the shower rod and point the spray away from the clothing, letting it steam. It will take 15 minutes at least though so you may want to consider your water bill (or doing this while you shower so as to not waste it). If you want to speed the process up, you can pull it flat to try to encourage the fabric to relax while it’s immersed in the steam. You can also toss clothing into the dryer for 10-15 minutes with an ice cube. Your dryer may even have a steam setting, if you look. Just be sure to remove the clothing immediately after to prevent new wrinkles from forming.

Other Clothes Steamers We Reviewed

We looked at 20 other clothes steamers, and while they may not have been our top 5 best clothes steamers picks, they’re still well worth a look and great options for your family. The information you’ll need to compare each one is included in the listing.

Handheld Steamers

Aicok Steam Iron, Clothes Steamer

Aicok Clothes Handheld Steaming

This steamer will work as an iron perfectly and pull double duty as a steamer, too, making it all the more worthwhile a purchase.

Key Features:

  • 2-year warranty
  • 2 steam settings: low and high
  • 15-second heat up

Cost: $40

Gideon Pressurized Compact Fabric Steamer

Gideon Pressurized Compact Fabric Steamer

This steamer is a little unconventional in appearance but does all the same glorious work you need from a steamer.

Key Features:

  • 15-second heat up
  • Includes a soft brush, a creaser heating plate, a lint brush, and storage case
  • Automatic shut-off

Cost: $20

Secura Instant-Steam Handheld Garment and Fabric Steamer

Secura Instant-Steam Handheld Garment and Fabric Steamer

The key to this steamer is in the shape that allows you to easily steam by just pointing and clicking like a scanner from the grocery store.

Key Features:

  • Heats in 15 seconds; 15 minutes continuous use
  • 8-ounce water tank
  • 360-degree rotating cord

Cost: $25

Talent Star Garment Steamer

Talent Star Garment Steamer

You won’t need to worry about the safety of this steamer because if ever it gets too hot or too low in water, it automatically shuts off.

Key Features:

  • 2 minute heat up
  • 150mL water tank
  • 10 minutes of continuous steaming

Cost: $20

VIVREAL Handheld Travel Steamer

VIVREAL Handheld Travel Steamer

This handheld steamer takes 90 seconds to warm up, so by the time you turn it on and get your item ready to be steamed, the steamer will be ready, too.

Key Features:

  • 6 minute continuous use
  • 4.8 ft cord
  • 4 ounce water tank

Cost: $30

Mini Steamers (9 inches or less)

ABYON handheld Steamer For Clothes

ABYON Steamer For Clothes

This steamer is durable enough for your everyday home use, but portable enough for a business trip, too.

Key Features:

  • 10 minutes of continuous use
  • 60-second heat up
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $30

Aicok Portable Garment Steamer

Aicok Portable Garment Steamer

This steamer is small enough that you can move around with it but big enough to steam everything you want it to do.

Key Features:

  • 10 minutes continuous use
  • 3-year warranty
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $20

Bizond Handheld Steamer for Clothes

Bizond Handheld Steamer for Clothes

This little steamer is incredibly lightweight at just 1.3 pounds, making it easy to transport and even easier to use.

Key Features:

  • 10 minutes of continuous use
  • 9.8 ft power cord
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $25

Bizond Mini Steamer for Clothes Handheld

Bizond Mini Steamer for Clothes Handheld

This steamer is so mini you could confuse it for your razor; but even as small as it is, this steamer still has a lot of power behind it.

Key Features:

  • 25 second heat up time
  • Spit and spill-proof; it even works upside down!
  • 10 minute continuous use

Cost: $40

Hilife Steamer for Clothes

Hilife Handheld Steamer for Clothes

You can steam away odor and wrinkles alike in a snap with this handheld steamer that’s under 9 inches tall.

Key Features:

  • 2 minute heat up
  • 10-13 minutes of continuous use
  • Fabric brush and measuring cup included

Cost: $25

Isteam By Exagora Steamer For Clothes

Isteam By Exagora Steamer For Clothes

This handheld steamer is Amazon’s choice for handheld steamers, and with a 4.4 rating and nearly 1,000 reviews, we understand why!

Key Features:

  • 60-second heat up
  • 1-year warranty
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $35

PurSteam Elite Travel Handheld Fabric Steamer

PurSteam Elite Travel Handheld Fabric Steamer

This steamer looks like all the others on the outside, but they claim a superior construction on the inside with BPA-free parts and an aluminum ball-style heating element.

Key Features:

  • Lightweight – only 1.1 pounds
  • 90-second heat up
  • 3-year warranty

Cost: $45

PurSteam Handheld Garment Steamer

PurSteam Handheld Garment Steamer

If you’ve tried this product in the past, you may want to give it another go; the manufacturer has improved the design to prevent water damage and water spitting.

Key Features:

  • 90-second heat up
  • 9 ft power cord
  • 3-year replacement

Cost: $25

URPOWER Portable Handheld Fabric Steamer

URPOWER Portable Handheld Fabric Steamer

This mini steamer includes a 130mL water tank that will allow you seven to ten minutes of continuous use between refills.

Key Features:

  • 2-year warranty
  • 2 minute heat up
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $20

Full-Sized Steamers

Aicok Standing Clothes Steamer

Aicok Standing Clothes Steamer

With its 1500W, this steamer heats in an impressive 45 to 60 seconds, making it more effective and wasting less of your time.

Key Features:

  • Telescopic pole and hanger
  • 67.6-ounce water tank
  • Automatic shut off

Cost: $60

Conair Ultimate Garment Steamer Full sized

Conair Ultimate Garment Steamer

With a 360-degree rotation and a 5-foot hose, this steamer can reach just about anywhere in your house.

Key Features:

  • 5-foot cool to the touch insulated hose
  • 90 minutes of continuous use
  • 80-ounce water tank

Cost: $50

PureSteam XL – High-Powered Standing Fabric Steamer

PureSteam XL - High-Powered Standing Fabric Steamer

This steamer heats in a surprising 45 seconds and includes a fabric brush and garment hanger to make your efforts all the more simple.

Key Features:

  • Telescopic pole and hanger
  • Half gallon water tank
  • 60 min of continuous between refills

Cost: $60

PurSteam Full Size Steamer

PurSteam Full Size Steamer

This steamer comes equipped with several accessories to make its steam customized for your specific purpose; whatever you choose that to be.

Key Features:

  • Telescopic pole and hanger
  • 4 steam levels for different fabrics and materials
  • Removable tank with ~ 1-gallon capacity

Cost: $70

Rowenta Full Size Garment and Fabric Steamer

Rowenta Full Size Garment and Fabric Steamer

This steamer is incredibly convenient with its foot pedal on/off switch that allows you to take advantage of its 60-minute continuous operation without bending over to switch on and off.

Key Features:

  • Telescopic pole and hanger
  • 3 attachments included: fabric brush, lint pad, and crease attachment
  • Extra large 81 oz water tank

Cost: $80

Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer

steamfast sf-407 fabric steamer

This steamer will give you 45 minutes of continuous steam and won’t burn or crush the fabric you’re steaming while you do so.

Key Features:

  • Telescopic pole with clothes hanger hook
  • Attachable fabric brush
  • 40 oz capacity water tank

Cost: $50

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