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If you want your clothes to stay looking neat and crisp (and who doesn’t?) a good iron is crucial to have in your arsenal of household tools. From that perfect job interview outfit to duds for a fun night out with friends, keeping your wardrobe in tip-top shape and looking perfectly polished requires one of the best irons on the market.
Why do people iron clothing?
Whether you’ve got a closet full of clothes that aren’t exactly dryer-friendly or simply have a few pieces you’ll need help keeping prim and fresh, an iron is a staple that no household should go without. They work on all kinds of fabrics, from sensitive silk to cozy cotton and everything in between.
There are irons out there at every price point, so you don’t need to break the bank to get wrinkle-free clothes. There are also tons of styles to fit your lifestyle, whether you’re a busy professional with a slew of work wardrobe essentials or a crafty quilter that loves a good DIY.
Dry Iron vs Steam Iron
Though steam irons are more widely available on the market, a dry iron might be a good option if you don’t want to deal with a potentially leaky water tank or a ton of complex dials. Dry irons typically have a simple knob to control the heat settings with no water reservoir, which means there’ll be no chance of accidental garment spills or stains. They tend to work best on delicate fabrics like silk and satin. Dry irons don’t have a spray mist function, however, so you’ll need to use a good old-fashioned spray bottle if you choose to go that route.
Steam irons, on the other hand, work via a series of steam holes on the metal face, or soleplate, to iron out creases on your clothes. Many have a wide range of features including steam triggers, LED displays, steam levers, and spray jets.
If you want the bells and whistles of the steam models but worry about stains, you can typically use a steam iron as a dry iron by leaving the water tank empty. Anti-drip features, which prevent drippage when the iron is set to lower temperatures (such as silks and synthetics), can also be key.
What is the best iron?
When it comes to the best irons, it all depends on what you like best. A few key features to look for are quick heat-up, a temperature-ready alert (such as an audible “beep” or indicator light), and an auto shut-off feature, so you can avoid that panicky moment after you’ve already left the house and can’t remember if you actually turned it off.
For steam irons, you’ll want to consider the size of the water tank (more steam = a faster-heating iron), as well as a feature called “vertical steaming,” which turns your horizontal iron into a freehand steamer to remove wrinkles without direct contact.
Then, there’s the soleplate material. Stainless steel is good for natural fabrics, such as cotton and wool, because it tends to conduct heat better, resulting in better steam. It works especially well on sleeves and pant legs. Aluminum is generally a more affordable option that’s great at distributing heat evenly across garments. Ceramic, meanwhile, is typically made of aluminum and coated with a ceramic layer. It exceeds at resisting static on synthetic fibers.
While all will get the job done, stainless steel plates can stick to glues and decals at higher temperatures, so crafty ironers should stick to aluminum or ceramic. Ceramic tends to absorb colors from natural fibers like cotton and wool, and it can also peel or wear down over time.
No matter which type suits you best, we’ve found a wrinkle-banishing option that is sure to fit your needs. Keep scrolling to shop Woman’s World‘s picks for the best irons to say ‘so long’ to crinkled clothes forever!
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Chi Touchscreen Iron
Best Overall Iron— CHI Touchscreen Iron
Where to buy: $149.99, Home Depot
If you want the best bang for your buck, you’ll love CHI’s Touchscreen Iron, which is beloved by buyers for its compact size, titanium-infused, smooth-gliding ceramic soleplate, and touchscreen control panel, which lets you select the temperature by setting fabric type, temperature, or the symbol on your clothing’s tag.
With a 10-foot cord and more than 400 steam holes, this iron is durable, scratch-resistant, easy to use, and powered by the same technology as your beloved CHI flat iron ($79.99, Ulta). A sleek handle with textured grip gives you control and comfort, letting you do your ironing with ease.
Wasing Dry Iron
Best Dry Iron — WASING Classic Dry Iron
Where to buy: $36.99, Amazon
If the thought of water stains ruining your clothes makes you cringe, you need WASING’s classic dry iron, which handles tasks seamlessly with no steam required. It has a stainless steel soleplate and simple temperature controls to better keep heat balanced — just turn the dial and go!
One recent Amazon reviewer called it the “best iron for quilters," writing, "I don't need steam, as I usually spray with water or starch. The iron heats up very quickly. ... If you are a quilter or [sewer], you will not be disappointed with this affordable and well-made iron.”
Miele Ironing System
Best High End Iron — Miele FashionMaster
Where to buy: $2,499.00, Amazon
The mac daddy of them all, Miele’s FashionMaster system makes a solid investment for those hoping to make weekly visits to the dry cleaner a thing of the past.
This impressive system includes an ironing board, a steamer, and an iron, delivering professional-level results on everything from your favorite blouses to formalwear. There’s an in-board fan with two speeds and an auto on/off feature, along with a height adjustment setting. The board itself has inflation for delicates garments and a suction function for tougher jobs, and will neatly fold away for easy storage when you've finished your tasks.
While it's definitely not cheap, you’ll save tons in dry cleaning bills for years to come by having this beauty at the ready.
Best Profession Iron — Rowenta Perfect Steam Station
Where to buy: $199.99 (Originally $354.99), Amazon
If you’re a sewer, quilter, or crafter by trade or hobby, you’ll want a heavy duty steam station, like this iron by Rowenta. There's no automatic shut-off feature, so you can steam for as long as you like (or for the rough hour and a half its extra-large removable tank allows). Its powerful blasts of steam perform flawlessly on fabrics from smooth silk to heavy cotton.There is, however, an eco setting on this professional-grade steaming station that you can use to save electricity.
One pleased buyer wrote, “I am a quilter. These irons are sturdy and last for years. I use it constantly and am pleased with how easy it is to fill the tank to continue ironing. It gives off plenty of steam, which every quilter needs.”
Reliable Velocity Iron
Best Iron Technology — Velocity Reliable
Where to buy: $169 (Originally $179.99), Amazon
This iron by Velocity boasts touch sensor technology that releases steam as soon as you grasp its comfortable handle, making ironing quick and easy for achy wrists, hands, and fingers. With powerful steam production and a 360-degree swivel cord, it also gives you the option to bypass the automatic shut-off feature, which is perfect for days when you have a high volume of ironing to attend to.
Velocity’s patented technology generates professional steam, so it's essentially an industrial-strength iron on a budget.
Panasonic Cordless Iron
Best Cordless Iron— Panasonic Cordless Iron
Where to buy: $55.99 (Originally $59.99), Amazon
Panasonic’s cordless model lets you move from room to room with your iron, which is ideal for when your curtains and drapes are in dire need of a good smoothing. This iron generates 1,600 watts of power, charging by way of its included heat-resistant base and carrying case. Its ergonomic design has a stainless steel soleplate and an anti-drip system, and you can choose from three heat settings, with options for adjustable steam, spray mist, and vertical steam to boot.
It also has an auto shut-off feature after 10 minutes of non-use and a durable, lightweight water tank that detaches at the touch of a button for spill-free refills. When it’s full, the tank will instantly snap back into place — just like magic!
Best Rated Iron— Rowenta Focus Micro Steam Iron
Where to buy: $62.81, Amazon
Amazon shoppers love to talk about how much they love Rowenta’s Focus micro steam iron: It's got more than 4,000 five-star reviews! And with a stainless steel soleplate that's got more than 400 steam holes to provide for stellar steam distribution and a precise glide, it's no wonder.
You can easily select the ideal steam output based on your fabric with the temperature control knob. An anti-drip lid, translucent water tank window, and three-way automatic shut off system helps to prevent accidents, while the auto-clean feature removes any residue with ease.
One buyer said it best, writing, “I have always liked Rowenta irons. ... [This] new one has so many new features that I like. I'm old school and do a lot of ironing and this iron is up to the task.”
Best Travel Iron— Steamfast Home and Away Mini Steam Iron
Where to buy: $23.99 (Originally $29.99), Kohl's
SAVE NOW: Use coupon code SAVENOW at checkout to get an extra 20 percent off through Oct. 20.
Whether you travel often for business or pleasure (or a maybe little bit of both), you’ll need something small-but-functional in the iron department to stash in your carry-on. Steamfast’s Home and Away Mini steam iron has a 1.4-ounce water tank that heats up in 15 seconds, plus single-touch steam control and three temperature settings for various fabric types that make it adaptable for use with nearly any outfit you've got packed.
An anti-slip handle provides a comfy grip, while a 7.5-foot power cord makes for easy reachability. It comes complete with a travel bag, a plastic measuring cup, and a two-year warranty. Customers who spend $50 or more will also get $10 back in Kohl's cash through 10/16.
Safest Clothing Iron — Oliso Smart Iron
Where to buy: $99.99, Amazon
If you’ve got a full house full of kids and pets (or if you’re just particularly clumsy and don’t trust yourself around a hot device) you’ll love the Oliso smart iron with iTouch technology. This baby, which comes with three steam settings, has patented scorch guards that will automatically lift the iron off the board when you touch the handle, preventing burns and tipping, while also reducing strain on your wrists and shoulders.
What's more, it automatically shuts off for safety after eight minutes of non-use, or 30 seconds if knocked over, so accidents will be far from the forefront of your mind.
Shark Steam Iron
Best Simple Iron— Shark Steam Iron
Where to buy: $44.99 (Originally $49.99), Kohl's
If simplicity is what you’re after, look no further than Shark’s steam iron. Designed by the same brand that brought you its beloved vacuum cleaners, this beauty provides powerful steaming. While it may not have all of the bells and whistles of other models, this iron lives up to the company's standards with a stainless steel soleplate, an anti-drip feature, and a 260 ml steam tank.
It automatically turns on when you plug it in with no confusing buttons, dials, or complicated settings, and works great on clothes, upholstery, and drapes alike.
Best Fast Iron— Maytag Speed-Heat Steam Iron
Where to buy: $69.99, Kohl's
Gone are the days of scrambling to iron your favorite shirt as you’re racing out the door — Maytag’s speed-heat steam iron reaches its max temperature in less than 60 seconds, regenerating steam in only three. With a built-in anti-wrinkle spray to smooth clothes faster, its stainless steel soleplate also acts as a vertical steamer, smoothing all your garments seamlessly.
Equipped with a precision thermostat, this soft touch, ergonomic machine allows you to simply turn the dial to the temperature of your choice to get cranking on fabrics, including linen, cotton, silk, wool, nylon, and synthetic fabrics. It’s even self-cleaning thanks to its anti-calc and anti-scale functions, making it the perfect choice for a busy gal on-the-go.
Hamilton Beach Iron
Best Iron With Retractable Cord— Hamilton Beach Durathon
Where to buy: $44.99, Kohl's
Trust us when we say that a retractable cord can often be a lifesaver when it comes to organized storage in your linen closet or laundry room — especially if you’re short on space. We love this model by Hamilton Beach, which has an 8-foot retractable cord means to put your days of tangled corded messes behind you.
In addition to its convenient storage, it's chock-full of great features, like a nonstick soleplate, continuous steam power, a self-cleaning option, and an easy, smooth glide. There's also a three-way auto shutoff (manual, unplug, or self-shut-off after a period of inactivity), so you’ll never worry about whether you left the iron on again.
Black + Decker Iron
Best Budget Iron— Black & Decker Vitessa
Where to buy: $49.99 (Originally $59.99), Kohl's
SAVE NOW: Use coupon code SAVENOW at checkout to get an extra 20 percent off through Oct. 20.
Looking for a great iron that won’t put a major dent in your wallet? Check out Black & Decker’s Vitessa. With an easy-to-use nonstick soleplate and SmartSteam technology that automatically optimizes the amount of steam based on the temperature you select, it's a great little affordable option for kicking wrinkles to the curb. It can also be used as a vertical steamer for your drapes and upholstery. Best of all, perhaps, it automatically shuts off when left unattended for 30 seconds on its side or soleplate and after eight minutes on the heel rest. Customers who spend $50 or more will also get $10 back in Kohl's cash through 10/16.
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