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It is universally agreed that ironing is one of the most disliked chores on the household roster.
It’s laborious to set up, lengthy to execute and there always seems to be … more.
So, might I personally recommend you ditch the traditional iron and ironing board in lieu of a garment steamer. Stay with me.
As someone who’s made the switch, I can attest to its timesaving and crease-busting abilities. You simply hang up your clothes, or lay them out on your bed, and the steam from the machine will loosen any creases and wrinkles. You’ll never have to wrangle an ironing board from the cupboard again.
THE BENEFITS OF USING A GARMENT STEAMER
Not only will it take you a fraction of the time, it’s kinder on your clothes too. Since there’s no heated iron that actually touches the fabric, you won’t risk accidentally burning your clothing. The steam is also effective at de-wrinkling delicate fabrics like chiffon, silk and woollen pieces.
Steaming can also prolong the freshness of your clothes between washes by killing odour causing germs and bacteria. The only downside is you might find it difficult to get a precise pleat crease on your pants, however some steamers do come with a separate attachment for this very purpose.
Whether you want a model that’s powerful and compact or a larger machine you’re happy to have on display, here are eight garment steamers that could potentially change your life.
THE UPRIGHT GARMENT STEAMER
Sunbeam Garment Steamer Butler 2000W, Amazon, $149
Delivering 2000 watts of power, this Sunbeam garment steamer will have your clothes steamed in no time. Turn it on and 40 seconds later it’s ready to unwrinkle your clothes. Featuring the ability to steam your delicates and silk garments, all the way up to hard to unwrinkle linen, all your steaming needs are taken care of. The integrated hanger rotates to allow you to steam quickly and seamlessly. Giving you peace of mind that your clothing will always be protected, this garment steamer switches into standby mode if the water runs out.
Tefal, Pro Style Upright Garment Steamer, $199 (currently $169)
From quick last minute touch ups to uniforms and work shirts, this high-powered steamer will blitz through your laundry. The 1.5L removable water tank gives you up to 50 minutes of steam, meaning you won’t have to regularly refill the reservoir. You also get a pull down soft board that mimics the function of an ironing board and means you can tackle pleats or bulkier items of clothing.
I’ve owned a Tefal steamer for about three years and it’s still going strong. It takes me under three minutes to pick out an outfit and have it steamed and ready to wear, which is great for last minute morning rushes. (The exact model the IS6300 Master Valet Garment Steamer is no longer in production.)
THE HANDHELD GARMENT STEAMER
Philips Steam&Go Handheld Garment Steamer, Amazon, $99
A no-fuss, easy to use garment steamer, this Philips option allows you to use it both horizontally and vertically on those too-tricky-to-iron areas of clothing. Super compact, it’s a garment steamer that can travel with you to ensure you have crisp, unwrinkled clothing wherever you go. Due to its SmartFlow technology, the steam plate is always heated to its optimal temperature, which means you don’t need to worry about any damage to your clothes. It features a 70ml detachable water tank that’s easy to fill and a handy 2.5 metre cord.
Kambrook, Swiftsteam Garment Steamer, $43
For a portable model you can pack in a suitcase, this handheld steamer makes ironing a breeze. While it does require a power socket, the 360 degree swivel cord means you won’t get stuck and the easy trigger button gives you a continuous jet of steam. It also comes with a detachable fabric brush to remove lint and dust from upholstery and clothes.
Of its many five star reviews, shoppers complimented the model for its effectiveness against wrinkles and powerful steam jet, with one reviewer writing: “Love it. This is a life-changer. I no longer dread ironing my silk shirts or indeed any fabric, thick or thin. I quickly wave this steamer over it for a minute or two and it freshens it up, gets rid of creases and I’m ready to go. Highly recommend it.”
Russell Hobbs, Handheld Steamer, $68
Another great travel option, the metal press of this handheld steamer replicates an iron head to tackle stiffer fabrics like suits, linen and denim. Whether you want to refresh your winter knits or require a more delicate hand to gently decrease a silk top, the 220mL tank will quickly have your clothes looking wrinkle-free and restored.
THE STEAMER AND IRON COMBO
Tefal, IXEO All in One – Iron & Steamer, $499
If you can’t bear to part with your iron, this Tefal all-in-one iron, steamer and sanitiser gives you the best of both worlds. The machine heats up in 45 seconds and comes with a three-position ‘Smart Board’ so you can pleat your pants, no ironing board necessary. Users can also hang a clothes hanger through the hook and use the machine as you would a normal garment steamer.
THE ONE FOR PEOPLE ONE THE GO
1300W Multi Use Travel Handheld Clothes Steamer Set, $34.97
For holidays, trips interstate and occasions when you’re away from home, this travel (and wallet) friendly steamer folds into the very compact size of 13cm by 20cm. It heats up in 15 seconds, gives you seven minutes of steaming action per tank and comes with a clothes clip for creases and a cloth and nylon brush to get rid of stray pieces of lint and dust.
THE STEAM WARDROBE
LG, Styler Steam Clothing Care System, $2999
Definitely not the cheapest appliance on the market, however this steamer wardrobe will freshen your clothes between washes and trips to the drycleaners. While it won’t take the place of your washing machine or dryer, it uses steam to sanitise your clothes, as well as reduce wrinkles. And it also comes with a nifty pleat crisper for pants.