Steamer vs iron

Steamer Vs Iron: Which Option should you go for?

If you have found yourself debating on whether to buy an iron or a steamer, this is the right article for you. Ideally, both appliances serve the same purpose, but most people find it difficult to make a decision because of the intricate differences that set them apart.

Accordingly, we have put together a detailed Steamer vs iron analysis to help you settle for the option that best serves your needs.


steaming vs ironing

A clothes iron is a small home appliance that comes in three versions that include dry iron, steam iron and dual purpose iron. A dry iron functions by applying heat on clothes whereas a steam iron interacts with garments by releasing both heat and steam.

 On the other hand, a dual version combines both of these functions by providing settings for adjusting to both modes.

Since an iron comes into direct contact with clothes, it smoothens out wrinkles and presses creases to achieve maximum crispness.  

It is an excellent choice if you want your clothes (especially dress shirts and trousers) to appear sharp and sleek or when dealing with heavy fabrics such as denim.

The Advantages of an Iron

The main advantage of an iron box is results. Since you have greater control when pressing clothes, you are able to take on one point at a time and achieve a crisp and clean finish. Furthermore, areas such as collars, creases and pleats receive the attention they need.

An iron with a vertical ironing functionality allows you to iron curtains, drapes and other items in almost the same way you eliminate wrinkles with a steamer.

Iron boxes are designed to handle tough fabrics such as denim, rayon, linen and cotton with more efficiency. They remove wrinkles easily especially when the steam function is engaged.

Unlike a steamer, it is easier to achieve temperature control with an iron. Most iron boxes provide settings that allow you to adjust the level of heat depending on the fabric of your garment. Small handheld steamers do not offer a feature for temperature adjustment. You have to work with the same heating conditions for all of your garments.

Most iron boxes are compact and portable

The Disadvantages of an Iron

An iron can easily burn clothes especially when pressing delicate fabrics. Additionally, it can also turn into a fire hazard if left plugged while resting on its soleplate.

Steam irons are difficult to clean especially when burnt fabric sticks to the bottom and mineral deposits accumulate in the steam holes.

Iron boxes require additional accessories such as an ironing board or at least a designated work area.

It is easier to damage the quality of clothes with an iron because the heat comes into direct contact with the fabric.


steamer vs iron

A steamer is a versatile appliance that also comes in three versions. They include professional steamers, standing steamers and portable handheld steamers. A Professional steamer is designed for commercial or industrial use whereas a standing steamer is more of a relatively big home appliance.

A portable handheld steamer is a small home appliance that also doubles as a travel streamer.

Steamers work by releasing hot steam to clothes. Consequently, the bonds between fabric fibers become loose thereby leading to the elimination of wrinkles.

The steam is generated from water that is added to a detachable or permanently fitted water reservoir that is found at the bottom section of a steamer.

Although steaming is mostly done on the outer surface of clothes, there are people that prefer to steam from the inside. In my opinion, both methods work in the same way.

Unlike irons, steamers do not give clothes a crisp appearance because they are not held directly on the surface of the clothes. Ideally, they are held close to the surface of the garment and the steam is applied in a top-bottom movement.

Overall, a steamer is a solid choice if your intention is to reduce the appearance of wrinkles on your clothes. It does not give crisp results and if majority of your clothes have pleats and creases, it is just not for you.

The Advantages of a Steamer

A steamer is highly versatile. It allows you to eliminate wrinkles from all kinds of fabrics including the most delicate ones.

Since a steamer does not come into direct contact with clothes, it allows garments to maintain their quality for a long time and does not cause burning.

Besides reducing the appearance of wrinkles, a steamer eliminates odor from clothes.

A steamer is much easier to handle when compared to an iron. Ideally, all you do is hang your garment, hold it on one end and control the vertical movement of the steamer.

A handheld steamer is easy to carry anywhere and you do not need a large working area when using it in hotels and other places away from your home.

Steamers require a small working area and few accessories. For example, a handheld steamer requires a hanger only.

The Disadvantages of a Steamer

A steamer is designed for reducing the appearance of wrinkles. It does not make clothes appear crisp. Accordingly, it is more suited for causal and women’s wardrobe.

Steamers can leave traces of moisture on clothes.

Steamers are slow at removing wrinkles from heavy and tough fabrics.

Bottom line: Streamer Vs Iron

From the analysis, it is clear that a steamer and an iron are useful at removing wrinkles but there are situations where each works perfectly. Accordingly, it best to acquire both if possible. This way, you will be able to take care of all your garments with minimal challenges.

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