As seen in:
Rowenta
Master Valet
Epica
800-Watt
My Little Steamer
Ultra Mini
Steamfast
SF-407
Jiffy Steamer
J-2000
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Good

81-ounce water tank provides at least an hour of steam time. Loaded with intuitive features designed to make your job easier.

Steam-ready in two minutes. Lightweight. 10-foot cable aids freedom of movement.

Steam-ready in 30 seconds. Great for travel.

Steam-ready in 45 seconds. 40-ounce water tank provides about 45 minutes of steam time.

96-ounce tank; can steam for an hour and a half. Good for home and light commercial use.

Bad

On the more expensive side, but its high quality and durability may end up saving you money in the long run.

Spillage and water spots can occur if not kept upright or if the machine runs too low on water.

Small reservoir needs to be refilled every few minutes. Will occasionally spit water if overturned or filled improperly.

Occasional durability complaints after two or more years of use.

Hose is a bit stiff. Limited feature set.

Bottom Line

The cream of the crop. This product does everything, and it does it better than anyone else.

A low-priced steamer that serves owners in a pinch. Not meant for larger jobs.

A quality appliance meant for travel.

The best value for your money. A moderately priced steamer with many useful features.

Popular product. Focused on durability, not "extras."

How we decide
BestReviews is committed to providing comprehensive and trusted reviews for products that matter to consumers. We do the research to help you save time and money.
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Products received from manufacturers
74
Models Considered
39
Hours Spent
1
Experts Interviewed
213
Consumers Consulted

Best Fabric Steamers

It's possible to find a portable fabric steamer for under ten dollars, but these ultra-cheap models take time to heat up and have inconveniently small reservoirs. You don't have to spend a fortune to get a great steamer, however. Our five winning finalists are:

Products we Considered

Rowenta
Master Valet
Epica
800-Watt
My Little Steamer
Ultra Mini
Steamfast
SF-407
Jiffy Steamer
J-2000

Considerations

Performance

The best fabric steamers turn water to steam quickly and offer a decent-sized water capacity (so you don't have to refill it often).

Ease of Use

Fabric steamers come in two basic types: portable and stationary. Even a stationary steamer needs to be moved around for curtains and upholstery, so you don't want it to be too heavy. Cables, hoses, and other attachments also affect how comfortable a machine is to operate.

Accessories

A variety of accessories can impact how useful and convenient a garment steamer is. These accessories include interchangeable nozzles, clips, and hangers to support clothing.

Price

A good fabric steamer can be a cost-effective, time-saving addition to your home. But how much do you need to spend, and what's the difference between entry-level and top-end machines?

Considerations

Performance

Epica 800 Watt Handheld Fabric Steamer

The Epica Handheld Fabric Steamer is powered by 800 watts, which means it can convert cold water to steam in as little as two minutes. Thanks to its seven-ounce tank, the Epica will continue running for up to 12 minutes between fill-ups. For a portable garment steamer, these are good specs for both home and travel use.

Ultra Mini Travel Steamer

According to owners, the Ultra Mini Travel Steamer will reach operating temperature in as little as 30 seconds thanks to its 850 watts of power. That's very fast indeed, but unfortunately, these same owners also say that the five- ounce tank needs refilling every few minutes. In spite of the manufacturer's suggestion that it can be used at home as well as on the move, that short working duration is rather inconvenient, especially if you're dealing with a substantial pile of laundry.

Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer

The Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer, designed for permanent home use, is much larger than the Epica and Ultra Mini. This machine has a power rating of 1,500 watts, enabling it to start producing steam in 45 seconds. Thanks to its 40-ounce water tank, the Steamfast can provide steam for up to 45 continuous minutes. This convenience makes it a compelling alternative to the traditional iron/ironing board approach. It's also an appropriate tool for cleaning curtains and upholstery.

Rowenta IS6300 Master Valet Full Size Garment Steamer

Rowenta is a well-respected name in laundry care, and the Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer clearly upholds the company's reputation for quality and clever design. Like the Steamfast, this is a 1,500 watt machine. However, the tank is larger -- 81 ounces -- and able to perform a full hour of steaming. Warm-up time is about a minute, which is slightly longer than some other products, but we doubt those few seconds would make a great deal of difference to most users.

J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer

The J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer may not be the most attractive machine on the market, but it hails from a company whose sole product is steamers. With 1,300 watts of power, a warm-up time between one and two minutes, and a massive, 96-ounce tank, the Jiffy will deliver all the steam you need for a class-leading hour and a half! This machine is suitable for both home and light commercial use. It has even been known to assist owners with cleaning carpet and removing wall paper.

Thanks to its 40-ounce water tank, the Steamfast can provide steam for up to 45 continuous minutes of use.
Considerations

Ease of Use

Epica 800 Watt Handheld Fabric Steamer

The benefits of a portable steamer are lost if it's a chore to use. Fortunately, that's not the case with the Epica Handheld Fabric Steamer. It's easy to fill and features a convenient, handle-mounted on/off switch (which also serves as a safety feature; some units can only be turned off by unplugging them). The Epica comes with a useful 10 feet of cable, allowing you to move fairly freely without the aid of an extension cord. Any steamer can produce spots of water and might spit if over-filled, so be sure to keep this model as upright as possible when in use. In general, people who own this unit are particularly happy with the amount of steam it produces and how lightweight it is.

Ultra Mini Travel Steamer

The Ultra Mini Travel Steamer's small size and light weight make it easy to use. Although the 8-foot cord is a little shorter than the Epica's cord, it's still a decent length. An on/off switch is built into the unit so you don't have to keep reaching for the wall socket. This product's small reservoir needs to be refilled often, but this attribute doesn't seem to impact owners' opinion of it when traveling.

Large, stand-alone machines like the Steamfast SF-407 provide steam for much longer periods of time than smaller products like the Epica. This model weighs 9 pounds. When water is added, it weighs even more. Fortunately, the Steamfast's wheels make it easy to move around. This steamer also comes with a hose that is approximately four feet long and a telescopic pole that extends up to 50 inches. We think one of the Steamfast's most valuable features is its removable water tank; rather than going back and forth with a jug, simply fill the reservoir at the sink.

Like the Steamfast, the Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer's water tank is removable, and the unit has wheels for moving it around. Thanks to the unit's two larger wheels, you simply tip and pull it when you want to move it. Rowenta's attention to detail is underlined by a telescopic handle that shrinks down for compact storage, a foot-operated on/off switch, and a soft-grip handle and hose that stay cool during steam operation.

If there's one word to describe the J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer, it's "focused." However, apart from the castor wheels and removable water tank, little consideration been given to what you might call "operator comfort." That doesn't mean it's difficult to use, and the five-and-a-half foot hose, though somewhat stiff, is certainly a useful feature. However, the Jiffy is more about durability than bells and whistles. It's an extremely popular model for this reason. Satisfied owners -- and there are a lot of them -- have plenty of positive things to say about this product's build quality and craftsmanship.

The Rowenta is a snap to move around the house. Simply tip and pull for easy portability.
Nina
Expert Consultant
Nina
Gourmet Chef, Health Care Executive

Nina is a longtime gourmet chef, interior designer/decorator, and events planner. She has accomplished all of this in addition to maintaining a stellar career as a healthcare executive, where she helps alter the course of people’s lives via preventive care and healthy living. Nina’s hobbies include learning new recipes, planning and executing amazing dinners to impress local chefs, and hiking around the world.

Considerations

Accessories

Epica 800 Watt Handheld Fabric Steamer

The Epica is an entry-level model. As such, it would be reasonable not to expect too many bells and whistles from this item. However, the Epica is an attractive product because it can accept water directly from a faucet (whereas some products require distilled water). Its wide mouth creates a good spread of steam, and its fabric brush/lint remover adds versatility to the package.

Ultra Mini Travel Steamer

The main selling point for the Ultra Mini Travel Steamer is its compact size and no-fuss operation. It's an ideal portable steamer, but not surprisingly, it's pretty basic. The mouth is nice and wide, but apart from that, the only accessory it comes with is a drawstring travel bag.

Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer

The Steamfast's 50-inch telescopic pole is especially helpful if you're cleaning drapes or furniture. A hook at the top of the pole supports the steamer head and can accommodate a fabric brush attachment. One of the main criticisms of steamers in general is that they can get creases OUT but can't put them IN. The Steamfast overcomes this criticism by providing a hand-held press pad to create purposeful creases in clothing. The pad may not give you the sharp lines of an iron, but it is a useful extra if you're not looking for folds of military precision!

Rowenta IS6300 Master Valet Full Size Garment Steamer

The Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer provides a competitive range of features. These features tend of be of a higher quality than features found in similar models from other companies. There's a fabric brush and lint remover to help garments look their best, a press pad for that "ironed" look, a full-width, built-in clothes hanger with clips, and an additional hook where you can put your own hanger. When you evaluate this overall package, it's easy to see that the Rowenta is a cut above its competitors.

J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer

The J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer is appropriate for both at-home and light industrial use, but it doesn't supply any racks, hooks, or other features that could assist you with larger jobs. You could hook something from the top of the steam head rod, but that's it. The machine is put together to a very high standard, which leads us to wonder why the company didn't include any of the helpful extras that Jiffy's competitors include. Having said that, there's no denying that hundreds of Jiffy Garment Steamer owners are very happy with their purchase.

You can use the Steamfast's hand-held press pad to create purposeful creases in your clothing.
Considerations

Price

Epica 800 Watt Handheld Fabric Steamer

The Epica Handheld Fabric Steamer costs only $15 -- a terrific price for a useful gadget that quickly makes clothing look more presentable. It's not a machine for refreshing you entire wardrobe. Rather, it's a machine designed to help when you're short on time and need to get a few wrinkles out quickly. The Epica does its job well, with a couple of caveats. Owners need to keep the unit upright as much as possible, and they need to be careful not to overfill it or let it run too dry. If these conditions aren't met, the Epica could spit steam and cause water spots on clothing. This is a problem that several owners have complained about. Nevertheless, the negative comments are outnumbered by the positive words of people who say the Epica is light, easy to use, and "perfect for busy people who don't have time to iron."

Ultra Mini Travel Steamer

The Ultra Mini Travel Steamer costs $43. As the name suggests, this product's focus is portability. The Epica has a bigger reservoir and longer running time than the Ultra Mini Travel Steamer and is therefore more useful at home, but the Ultra Mini is smaller and lighter -- great for throwing in a suitcase. Like the Epica, this unit will spit water if overturned or not filled properly. Another negative: some users told us that they find the construction of this little gadget to be a bit on the inferior side. However, the majority of owners we spoke to felt that the Ultra Mini Traveler Steamer does what it's designed to do and is a good value for the money.

Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer

The Steamfast SF-407 Fabric Steamer sells for $58. Given its decent price, versatility, and the accessories provided, it's not surprising that this is a popular machine with consumers. Short heating time, long steaming time, and a relatively compact design make the Steamfast an attractive choice. Used properly, the Steamfast can remove wrinkles from a wide variety of garments and other materials around the home. Our research did uncover a few negative comments regarding this machine's durability after two years of use, and several people told us they experienced a loss of steam due to mineral deposit blockages. Mineral deposit blockages are actually quite a common problem because most manufacturers claim you can use water straight from the tap. Distilled water or a 50/50 mix are often a better choice. Overall, the overwhelming majority of owners think the Steamfast is an excellent product. Comments like "Never ironing again!" are common.

Rowenta IS6300 Master Valet Full Size Garment Steamer

You can get the Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer right now for $129. For this price, you get a product that is undoubtedly the best fabric steamer on the market today. It comes with the same benefits and features of our other shortlist contenders, but the difference is in the details and the way this product is put together. Competitive highlights: it's easier to move around, it runs longer between refills, and the hangers and attachments are more useful. One or two owners did experience leaks, and a few of the owners we surveyed said they prefer the results you get from old-fashioned ironing (which, in our opinion, should be seen as a personal choice rather than a comment about the quality of this machine). Most owners think it's a fabulous appliance. One happy customer told us she was going to toss her iron into the trash, thanks to the usefulness of the Rowenta.

J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer

The J-2000 Jiffy Garment Steamer costs $159, which is a fairly high price considering the fact that you don't get any accessories. We wonder why people would pay more than the Rowenta for a machine that offers fewer accessories. And yet, people do. Lots and lots of them. And it's very hard to find more than a handful of owners that have anything bad to say about it. Most will agree that it's not the most attractive product available, but they counter that by saying that the Jiffy's engineering and craftsmanship are flawless. Positive owner comments like "Worth every penny!" and "Great purchase!" are simply too numerous to ignore.

As hundreds of owners will tell you, the Rowenta Garment Steamer is clearly an exceptional machine. It's mobile, it offers multiple attachments, and it makes your clothes look their very best.

Best of the Best

The fact that these five fabric steamers made it to our shortlist means they're all of excellent quality. However, our "Best of the Best" choice was made easy by just how good our favorite is: The Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer.

Rowenta is a big name in laundry care. The company is a long-established firm with a reputation for selling efficient, quality products. The Rowenta IS6300 Compact Valet Garment Steamer continues that tradition, scoring well in every area of our ratings. It's a well-made, attractive, easy-to-use, clever machine. With a water tank of 81 ounces, you can run the Rowenta continuously for up to one hour. More than one owner said their arm started to ache after 30 minutes, so it's unlikely that the machine will be the one to give out first!

As hundreds of owners will tell you, the Rowenta Compact Valet Garment Steamer is clearly an exceptional machine. It's mobile, it offers multiple positions, attachments, and holders for garments, and it makes your clothes look their very best. It can even do a decent job of mimicking an iron with the pad provided. When you consider its reasonable price of $129, there's no denying that the Rowenta Compack Valet Garment Steamer is the absolute best fabric steamer on the market today.
Best of the Best
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The Rowenta Compact Valet Garment Steamer is a well-made, attractive, easy-to-use, clever machine.

Best Bang for your Buck

Both of the lower-priced travel fabric steamers on our shortlist are great for those who travel, but the best value fabric steamer award has to go to the Steamfast SF-407.

In the final analysis, the Steamfast doesn't quite have the same level of quality as the Rowenta, but it comes very close. It's actually quicker than the Rowenta to heat up, although to be fair it has a much smaller capacity at 40 ounces. Owners don't see the 40-ounce capacity as a disadvantage, though, as it can run for 45 minutes (by which time you'll probably want a break anyway). The telescopic pole has a good reach, the steamer head attachments can brush clothing and remove lint, and the ironing pad, in addition to removing wrinkles, lets you create purposeful creases where you want them.

Of course, what makes the Steamfast our "Best Bang for Your Buck" choice is its budget cost of only $58. At such an appealing price, it's no surprise that the Steamfast is a very popular machine. If you're looking for an economically priced fabric steamer that satisfies your every need, you can't go wrong with the Steamfast SF-407.
Best Bang for your Buck
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At such an appealing price, it's no surprise that the Steamfast is a very popular machine.
The team that worked on this review
  • Bob
    Bob
    Writer
  • Melissa
    Melissa
    Editor
  • Jess
    Jess
    Researcher
  • Jimi
    Jimi
    Product Analyst
  • Adrian
    Adrian
    Senior Engineer