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The 5 Best Irons (2023 Review)

In this review, the This Old House Reviews Team analyzes and compares the best irons on Amazon to help you find one that’s right for you.

Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron and Amazon Basics Teflon Soleplate Steam Iron isolated on a yellow grid paper background Courtesy Amazon

Ironing is no one’s favorite task, but it’s even worse if your iron is ineffective at eliminating wrinkles. With all of the options on the market, it can be confusing to determine which iron to buy. To help you select the model that’s right for you, the This Old House Reviews Team researched the best irons on Amazon.

Below are our top recommendations, a comprehensive buyer’s guide, and answers to common questions.


In This Guide: Top 5 | Buyer’s Guide | FAQs | Why Trust This Old House

Compare Top Irons

Product Cord Design Soleplate Safety Features Wattage Weight Warranty
Product Cord Design Soleplate Safety Features Wattage Weight Warranty
Rowenta Micro Steam Iron Corded Stainless steel 3-way auto shut-off 1,725 watts 3.2 pounds 1-year limited
Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron Corded (retractable) Stainless steel 3-way auto shut-off 1,400 watts 2 pounds 3-year limited
Panasonic Contoured Steam/Dry Iron Cordless Stainless steel Auto shut-off 1,500 watts 5 pounds 1-year limited
BLACK+DECKER Light ‘N Easy Compact Steam Iron Corded Ceramic 3-way auto shut-off 1,200 watts 2.5 pounds 2-year limited
Amazon Basics Teflon Soleplate Steam Iron Corded Teflon Overheat protection 1,200 watts 1.8 pounds 1-year limited

Top 5 Irons


Most Powerful: Rowenta Micro Steam Iron

Rowenta micro steam iron

Rowenta Micro Steam Iron

  • $60

Prices taken at time of publishing.

This steam iron comes with a stainless steel soleplate with 400 microholes. It also has an angled precision tip to smooth hard-to-reach parts of your clothes, such as around the collar. With over 1,700 watts of power, this iron can tackle wrinkles in any fabric. 

Courtesy Amazon

Pros and Cons

✔ Has 400 soleplate holes to evenly distribute steam
✔ Comes with an anti-drip lid
✔ Operates with tap water

✘ Has a short one-year warranty
✘ Prone to leaks on the high heat setting

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked that this iron had built-in safety features and easy temperature control. They also said that it was effective at eliminating wrinkles. However, those who were unhappy with this product claimed that it leaked frequently.


Best Warranty: Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron

Blue Sunbeam steammaster steam iron

Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron

  • $40

Prices taken at time of publishing.

This iron provides a steam burst for extra moisture to tackle tough wrinkles and creases. It also has a stainless steel nonstick plate for smooth operation. If a defect occurs within the first three years of ownership, Sunbeam will cover qualifying costs.

Courtesy Amazon

Pros and Cons

✔ Has a self-clean system to keep it free of mineral deposits
✔ Has smart technology that automatically shuts the iron off if it’s left unattended
✔ Comes with an eight-foot retractable cord

✘ Some customers had issues with the retractable cord breaking
✘ Doesn’t effectively remove wrinkles from thick fabrics

What Customers Are Saying

Satisfied customers said that this steam iron was easy to use and store, had effective safety features, and featured a lightweight build. However, those who left negative reviews said that this iron was sometimes uncomfortable to hold. Others claimed that the retractable cord broke easily.


Best Cordless Iron: Panasonic Contoured Steam/Dry Iron

Light teal Panasonic steam/dry iron

Panasonic Contoured Steam/Dry Iron

  • $85

Prices taken at time of publishing.

If you want the ease of use and portability of a cordless iron, this model may be right for you. It has preset functions that make it easy to switch between heat, steam, vertical steam, and more as well as a base and cover to give you the option to bring it with you on trips. 

Courtesy Amazon

Pros and Cons

✔ Offers a lot of power at 1,500 watts even though it’s cordless
✔ Comes with a lightweight carrying case
✔ Has touch buttons for temperature control

✘ Weighs more than the other irons in this review even though it’s meant to be portable
✘ Needs frequent recharging

What Customers Are Saying

Customers liked that this model was easy to handle, lightweight, and portable. However, some reviewers didn’t like that it had to be recharged frequently. They also said that it didn’t produce enough heat to work on certain fabrics.


Most Versatile: BLACK+DECKER Light ‘N Easy Compact Steam Iron

Teal BLACK+DECKER compact steam iron

BLACK+DECKER Compact Steam Iron

  • $25

Prices taken at time of publishing.

Whether you’re ironing nylon, wool, polyester, cotton, or another type of fabric, this iron makes it simple to eliminate wrinkles. The built-in nonstick soleplate is engineered to glide smoothly across all types of fabrics for smooth and effortless ironing.

Courtesy Amazon

Pros and Cons

✔ Has a three-way motion-sensitive auto-shutoff feature for safety
✔ Engineered to prevent water from dripping
✔ Has a spray mist option that moistens fabrics

✘ The water tank requires frequent refilling
✘ The steam feature stopped working for some customers after a few weeks

What Customers Are Saying

Those who were happy with this iron said that it was lightweight, durable, and easy to use. Others who were unhappy with this product said that it often leaked and sometimes made loud gurgling or sputtering noises.


Best Starter Option: Amazon Basics Teflon Soleplate Steam Iron

Amazon Basics steam iron

Amazon Basics Teflon Soleplate Steam Iron

  • $23

Prices taken at time of publishing.

Great for those looking for their first iron, this budget model uses a Teflon soleplate for smooth gliding across fabrics. The vertical steam feature allows users to iron hanging garments, curtains, and drapes. A one-year limited warranty is also included.

Courtesy Amazon

Pros and Cons

✔ Has an adjustable thermostat and variable steam features
✔ Has a 360-swivel power cord for maneuverability
✔ Offered with ceramic and stainless steel soleplates

✘ Has a weak power output of only 1,200 watts
✘ The 150ml water tank is smaller than other models in this review

What Customers Are Saying

Overall, the majority of customers who reviewed this iron said that it was great value, stating that it performed just as well as irons that cost them hundreds of dollars. On the other hand, some users complained that the iron turned off too quickly when idle, and others wished that the power cord was longer.


Buyer’s Guide

This guide explains the important features to look for in an iron to help you choose the right model for your needs.

Soleplate

An iron’s soleplate should be smooth to easily glide across your clothes. Soleplates with evenly spaced holes are typically best, as they allow for the most consistent steam distribution.

Soleplates are usually made of stainless steel, ceramic, teflon, or titanium. Stainless steel plates are popular because their smooth surface glides easily over the fabric. Ceramic and teflon plates are also smooth-gliding but eliminate static better than most stainless alternatives. Titanium soleplates provide optimum heat distribution while being corrosion-resistant.

Settings

Most irons offer multiple temperature or steam settings to manually adjust how hot the steam is or how much steam comes out. Other models come with specific settings for certain types of fabric, making it simple to set the device to the material that your clothes are made from. Both setting options are useful, as they allow you to set the iron to match the type of fabric or severity of wrinkling.

You’ll find that many irons on the market also function as vertical clothes steamers. This additional feature is especially useful when dealing with delicate garments or oversized items like drapery.

Cord

Irons come in either corded or cordless versions. Cordless irons are lightweight and portable and allow for more freedom of movement. However, cordless irons require frequent recharging and are often less powerful.

Corded irons are the most common type, and cords typically measure between 5 to 10 feet in length. If you have a long ironing board or aren’t near an electrical outlet, it’s important to consider cord length. Newer irons often feature swiveling or retractable cords as well.

Water Tank

The water in your iron’s tank is heated and converted into steam for removing wrinkles. The capacity of a water tank is usually given to you in ounces, with most irons only holding around 10 ounces. You can find other irons on the market with larger water tanks if you want to iron for longer periods, but they will be bulky and difficult to maneuver and take longer to heat up.

Safety Features

Any iron you find online should advertise an auto shut-off feature. This safety feature is designed to prevent house fires or burnt clothing should the user forget about the iron while it’s turned on. Some models feature a three-way shut-off feature that turns off different parts of the iron, such as heat to the soleplate or the steamer mechanism, depending on how long it’s been idle.


Frequently Asked Questions

How do you properly iron clothes?

Here is a step-by-step guide to ironing:

  • Heat your iron, and adjust it to the proper setting.
  • Spray or mist your clothes with water to get them slightly damp.
  • Smoothly glide the iron across your clothes to eliminate creases and wrinkles.
  • If you’re ironing collars, pockets, hems, or cuffs, iron the inside first, and smooth any remaining wrinkles on the outside.

Do you need an ironing board to use an iron?

While ironing boards are the most convenient place to iron clothes, you can use any smooth flat surface, such as a wooden floor, table, or countertop, if you don’t have one. If you’re not using a board, cover the surface to protect it from steam and heat damage.

How often should irons be replaced?

If irons are properly cared for, they can typically last up to 10 years before needing to be replaced. If your iron breaks or becomes difficult to operate, it may be time to replace it.

Which iron gets the hottest?

This iron from Rowenta has a powerful 1,725-watt output, helping it rapidly achieve some of the hottest temperatures of any iron in this review. In general, look for an iron with the most wattage if you want it to be the hottest.


Why Trust The This Old House Reviews Team

This Old House has empowered homeowners for more than four decades with top-notch home improvement content in the form of television programs, print media, and digital content on its website and social media platforms. The This Old House Reviews Team focuses on creating in-depth product and service review content to help inform your purchasing decision for just about any item or resource that you might need for your home. The This Old House Reviews Team has written over 1,000 reviews on products in the home space, from cordless drills to kitchen trash cans, lawn mowers, and dining room decorations.

We recommend products in each review using an intensive research process, spending hours combing through the best available models on Amazon. For a product to make our list of top picks, it must hold a solid sales record on Amazon, have consistently positive customer reviews, and offer unique features, among other factors. After narrowing down our list of recommendations, we conduct additional research and sometimes in-person testing to ensure that the products meet our standards. Once we conclude the research phase, we craft a well-rounded, user-friendly article that includes our recommended products and additional information to help homeowners like you make the right purchase.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.