10 best flat irons of 2021, according to celebrity hairstylists
Ceramic vs. tourmaline vs. titanium flat irons
The three most common flat iron plates are ceramic, tourmaline and titanium. Each one will straighten hair, but different attributes make each more beneficial for certain hair textures, ranging from fine wavy hair to kinky coils.
Ceramic flat irons
Bertin said that ceramic irons are the most affordable option out of the three types of hair straighteners. They don't get as hot as titanium and tourmaline, which can be a good thing, depending on your hair’s health and texture.
- Hairstylist Courtney Foster and Bertin agreed that ceramic flat irons heat up "fairly quickly," provide even heat distribution, glide through the hair smoothly and leave behind a glossy sheen.
- They also agreed that those with thick, coarse hair should pass on ceramic flat irons.
- After the ceramic-coated plates wear down or chip away, "the not-so-safe-metal" — usually aluminum — is exposed, which "can really wreck your hair."
- Ceramic flat irons are ideal for those with dry, damaged or fine hair, said Bertin.
Tourmaline flat irons
According to the pros, tourmaline plates contain silicate and straighten the hair with less heat.
- Tourmaline hair straighteners smooth the hair cuticle and add moisture-locking ions to the hair. "These ions help balance out dry and damaged hair, leaving the hair silkier with no frizz or flyaways," Foster said.
- Because the flat iron plates are coated with tourmaline, Bertin advised that you keep an eye out for wear and chipping to avoid potential heat damage.
- Bertin added that you need fewer passes to get your desired effect because the heat distribution of tourmaline is the best of the three.
Titanium flat irons
Titanium is a strong, durable metal best suited for professional salon use, said Bertin.
- Titanium flat iron plates heat up the quickest, he said.
- Foster, founder of Courtney Foster Beauty, added that a titanium iron also heats evenly, which allows for fewer passes over the hair and gives "much better results than the ceramic iron."
- Bertin added that even if you have hair with minimal damage from heat or chemical processing, titanium flat irons can mess up your hair.
Best flat irons of 2021
Once you’ve determined which flat iron works best for your hair’s natural texture and fullness, where should you start looking? We consulted experts and found 11 celebrity hairstylist-approved flat irons in various price points.
1. CHI Original 1-inch Ceramic Iron
Foster's favorite ceramic iron is the 1-inch version from CHI, which she called "a nice introductory iron that is priced reasonably and provides a nice finish to the hair." The flat iron uses negative ions to add moisture and shine to your strands. It takes 30 seconds for the hair straightener to reach a pre-set temperature of 392 degrees Fahrenheit. The ergonomic design helps make it easier to curl, wave and straighten your hair. The CHI ceramic flat iron boasts a 4.5-star average rating from more than 5,900 reviews on Amazon, where it is currently marked down nearly 70 percent off.
2. BaByliss PRO Mini Nano Titanium Ionic Flat Iron
"The BaByliss almost needs no explanation, as it's compact, thin and perfect for all those trouble spots where your normal flat iron can't reach, like your temples, part or neckline," said celebrity hairstylist Kristen Shaw. At just under $30, you get a powerful 6-inch-long flat iron with .5-inch-wide plates that heat up to 430 degrees Fahrenheit. Toss the hair straightener into your weekend bag or purse for quick touch-ups on the go. The Mini Nano flat iron earned a 4.4-star average rating from nearly 4,700 reviews on Amazon.
3. Revlon Salon Straight Copper Smooth
Caile Noble, the hairstylist to Julia Roberts, Cindy Crawford and Kirsten Dunst, called the Revlon Salon Straight Copper Smooth his "one-stop and favorite flat iron" for all hair types. The adjustable heat ranges from 180 to 455 degrees Fahrenheit, which allows you to tailor the temperature to your hair texture. (Remember: The coarser your hair, the higher the temperature you can get away with using.) "The added attachment works wonders on thicker hair to give added control and better results while styling," he said. "And the copper plates evenly distribute heat, resulting in less damage and added frizz control. Who doesn't want that?" If you prefer larger flat iron plates, then go for the XL version that is 1.5 inches wide or the 2-inch option. It boasts a 4.5-star average rating from nearly 1,600 reviews on Amazon.
4. T3 Lucea Straightening and Styling Iron
Kiki Heitkotter, hairstylist to Busy Phillips, Michelle Williams, Reese Witherspoon and Lili Reinhart, "loves" using this "versatile" hair straightener on clients. The flat iron has nine heat settings, "making it very easy to customize the amount of heat for your specific hair type [and] causing less damage, which is a huge bonus for our hair," she said. Heitkotter also likes the flexible plates, which "allow the flat iron to grip the hair with even tension." The T3 Lucea is the No. 1 bestseller in its class on Sephora and it received a 4.8-star average from 75 reviews on the site.
5. ghd Classic Original IV Hair Straightener
Shaw, who works with Chloe Sevigny and Emma Watson, keeps this ceramic flat iron on rotation. "It's one of my favorites due to its semi-rounded edges, which increase the preservation of your hair's integrity and strength, so you don't accidentally repeat creases with frequent styling, which ultimately breaks your hair," she said. The flat iron heats up in 30 seconds to one temperature setting — 365 degrees Fahrenheit— and shuts down after 30 minutes of non-use. This ghd hair straightener boasts a 4.5-star average rating from nearly 1,600 reviews on Amazon.
6. Dyson Corrale Hair Straightener
Foster's favorite tourmaline iron is the Dyson Corrale hair straightener. "The quality and price tag makes this flat iron like the Rolls Royce of hair tools," she said. Shaw, who helps Hillary Swank, Jodie Comer and Shailene Woodley primp for the red carpet, also keeps this hair straightener in her pro kit. The cordless flat iron "will straighten your hair at the fastest speed without burning it and leaves your strands shiny," she said. It offers 30 minutes of cord-free use, three pre-set heat seeings — 330, 365 and 410 degrees Fahrenheit — and automatically shuts off after 30 minutes.
7. L'Oréal Steampod
Bertin, who works with Letitia Wright, Katy Perry and Cara Delevingne, is also a fan of the L'Oreal Steampod. The ceramic flat iron uses steam — rather than dry heat like other hair straighteners — to achieve sleek strands. "This infusion of moisture (water) conditions the hair while straightening and allows for a longer-lasting style that will stay frizz-free," he said.
8. Cloud Nine Original Flat Iron
Bertin "loves" the Cloud Nine flat iron, which is available in four sizes — Micro, Touch, Original and Wide. It also has seven temperature settings, ranging from 212 to 392 degrees Fahrenheit,which he noted is “really helpful to pinpoint all hair types." The ceramic plates are infused with minerals, "so you get a gorgeous, snag-free glide," Bertin added. If you're unsure of which size hair straightener is best for you, then follow Bertin's tip: "Smaller plates are better for short hair, whereas larger plates are better for longer hair. The plate size won't affect the finished product, but it will affect the speed at which you get there."
9. Kristin Ess 3-in-1 Flat Iron
"This flat iron has beveled edges, making it user-friendly and less likely to get bends and creases in the hair," said Heitkotter. With 1.25-inch titanium plates and four pre-set temperatures that heat up to 440 degrees, you can "glide (the flat iron) smoothly through your hair, giving you a shiny end result." There's also a 9-foot-long swivel cord and automatic shutoff after 30 minutes of non-use. This 3-in-1 Kristin Ess flat iron is a top three bestseller on Target.
10. Bellami Triple Shine Original Flatiron
Ruslan Nureev, who works with Jessica Alba, Karlie Kloss, Bella Hadid and Jasmine Tookes, is "obsessed" with the Bellami Triple Shine flatiron. The hair straightener, which is available in three sizes — .5-, 1- and 1.5-inches — heats up to 430 degrees in 60 seconds. It also has graphene, black diamond and ceramic plates, which "makes the hair very shiny in one pass," he said.
Do flat irons damage hair?
Foster said that flat irons do not damage hair. However, improper use, like utilizing a temperature too high for your hair type, can "run the risk of damage." Bertin agreed, adding that heat damage is "irreparable and has to be grown out." That means it's safest to start with a lower temperature and increase if necessary. He said the cuticle, or outer layer of a hair strand, can "very easily" become damaged by heat over 356 degrees Fahrenheit or 180 degrees Celsius, "if care isn't taken to do quick passes on a low or medium temperature with a flat iron." Damaging that cuticle layer will make your hair more porous, which means it will struggle to hold on to moisture, explained Bertin. When heat is applied to hair, he noted, its moisture content begins evaporating, which causes dryness and breakage.
Although hair straighteners are safe to use, hairstylists we consulted advised against using flat irons — or any hot tool, for that matter — every day. “Even with the best heat protectants in the game, heat, whether that is from a flat iron or a hair dryer, is not something you should be exposing your hair to every day,” added Bertin. He said those with afro-textured hair should consider flat ironing their hair at most once a week because "our hair is naturally more fragile and dry, so flat ironing any more than that is a huge no-no." Depending on the health and dryness of straighter hair types, you can get away with flat ironing more often, but Bertin advised against everyday use if you want healthy hair.
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Nicole Saunders is a former associate commerce editor for Select on NBC News, covering wellness and lifestyle.
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Walmart has released their 2021 Top-Rated by Kids Toy List with the hottest toys for kids of all ages as well as 16 Walmart exclusives!
The top toy list for 2021 features various themes including Awakening Imagination, Fresh Air Fun , Edutainment Expression, Not-So-Pretend Pets and more. In addition, Walmart has more than doubled its toy selection this year and added hundreds of additional toys available for pickup and delivery.
Walmart’s 2021 Top-Rated by Kids Toy List
See all the toys on the Top-Rated by Kids Toy List below at Walmart.com HERE!
The prices listed below are the regular prices and many of the items are on sale now.
1:10 RC Hot Wheels Rhimomite ($59.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Barbie Extra Doll & Vanity Playset ($59.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Batman RC All-Terrain Vehicle ($49.97)
Bluey 4WD Campervan Playset ($49.44)
Hot Wheels Massive Loop Mayhem Track Set ($49.97)
L.O.L. Surprise OMG House ($229.00)
Monster Jam Truck Wash Set ($29.97)
Rainbow High Color Change Car ($49.88)
Crayola Creative Fun Double Easel ($44.88) – Walmart Exclusive
Fisher-Price 4-in-1 Learning Bot ($49.44)
Kinetic Sand Sandisfactory ($19.94)
VTech KidiZoom PrintCam ($71.00)
Fresh Air Fun
12V Jeep Gladiator Children’s Ride On in a variety of colors ($369.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Fisher-Price Bouncesational Bounce House with Built-in Pump ($69.00) – Walmart Exclusive
HALO Supreme Big Wheel Scooter in a variety of colors ($39.93) – Walmart Exclusive
Jetson Hali X Luminous Extreme-Terrain Hoverboard in a variety of colors ($178.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Kryptonics 28” Cruiser Skateboard in a variety of colors ($24.97) – Walmart Exclusive
Monster Jam 24V Grave Digger Ride On in a variety of colors ($449.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Razor Miniature Dirt Rocket MX125 Electric-Powered Dirt Bike ($179.00) – Walmart Exclusive
furReal Sweet Jammiecorn Unicorn ($29.96)
LEGO Creator 3 in 1 Fish Tank ($29.97) - Walmart Exclusive
Magic Mixies Cauldron in a variety of colors ($59.00); Launches Oct. 1 – Walmart Exclusive Color
Na! Na! Na! Surprise Kitty-Cat Camper ($94.00)
VTech Hover Pup ($24.97) – Walmart Exclusive
On-Screen and Streaming Favorites
Disney’s Raya and The Last Dragon Color Splash Raya and Sisu ($32.44)
Jurassic World Stomp N’ Escape Tyrannosaurus Rex ($39.97)
LEGO Marvel Avengers: Endgame Final Battle ($69.97)
Paw Patrol Movie Tower ($149.00)
Ryan’s World Rocketship ($81.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Spark Create Imagine Cocomelon Bus ($29.97) – Walmart Exclusive
Star Wars Galactic Snackin’ Grogu ($79.00)
Baby Alive Lulu Achoo ($52.00)
Barbie Blonde and Black Hair Styling Head Tie-dye ($29.84)
Flybar 6V Bumper Car ($99.00) – Walmart Exclusive
Giant Sorry ($24.86)
My Little Pony Fashion Ponies in a variety of characters ($15.44) – Walmart Exclusive
Nerf Hyper Mach 100 ($73.00)
Play-Doh Kitchen Creations Rising Cake Oven Playset ($19.96)
Marvel Spider-Man Super Web Slinger ($19.87)
Plus, gifts purchased for delivery from Walmart stores will arrive in new peek-proof bags at no extra cost.
See all the toys on the list at Walmart.com HERE!
Savings Spotlight Sale
Walmart has a new Savings Spotlight Sale including good buys on clothing, Chromebooks, tablets, toys, video games, vacuums, cookware sets and more!
See all the sales at Walmart.com HERE!
* Costway 6V Ride-On Toy Motorcycle Trike 3-Wheel Electric Bicycle w/ Music & Horn is on sale for $59.99 (reg. $139.99) at Walmart.com HERE
* Mega Bloks First Builders Big Building Bag with Big Building Blocks for Toddlers (80 Pieces) is on sale for $14.92 (reg. $24.99) at Walmartcom HERE
* Disney Frozen 2 iTime Interactive Kids Smart Watch is on sale for $34.99 (reg. $65)
* Costway Portable Kids Play House with 100 Balls is on sale for $35.99 (reg. $64.99)
* CHO Power Sports Hoverboard Self Balancing Scooter 6.5" w/ LED Lights Built in Bluetooth Speaker is on sale for $109 (reg. $168)
* Mainstays Basic Solid 18-Piece Bath Set, White is on sale for $23.25 (reg. $57.60)
* The Lodge Pre-Seasoned 10.5 inch Cast Iron Grill Pan is on sale for only $19.90 (reg $36) at Walmart.com HERE
* Chefman TurboFry Stainless Steel Air Fryer is on sale for $73.61 (reg. $99.99)
* Costway Foldable Travel Baby Playpen Crib Infant Bassinet Bed Mosquito Net Music with Bag is on sale for $105.99 (reg. $219.99)
* Robot vacuums and upright vacuums up to 50% off (including top brands) at Walmart.com HERE
* iRobot Roomba i7 (7150) Robot Vacuum- Wi-Fi Connected, Smart Mapping, Works with Google Home, Ideal for Pet Hair, Carpets, Hard Floors is on sale for $494.99 (reg. $799)
The Walmart Clearance Sale is taking place now with up to 70% off!
There are some super deals on toys, holiday decor, trees, lights, winter coats, baby clothes, shoes, beauty, sports & outdoors, electronics, home and more!
See all the deals in this clearance sale at Walmart.com HERE!
Holiday Decor: See the holiday decor clearance at Walmart.com HERE.
Toys, Games & Arts & Crafts: See the toy clearance sale at Walmart.com HERE.
Home & Kitchen: See the kitchen clearance sale at Walmart.com HERE.
Electronics: See the electronics on sale at Walmart.com HERE.
Clothing: See the clothing sale at Walmart.com HERE.
Baby Toys & Gear: See the clearance sale for baby products at Walmart.com HERE.
Sports & Outdoors: See the clearance for sports and outdoor products at Walmart.com HERE.
If the price on the Walmart website is different than the price listed above, that means that the sale has ended and is no longer available.
Walmart+ Membership Program
Walmart has launched a new membership program offering unlimited free delivery from stores, fuel discounts, Scan & Go shopping and more.
Walmart+ is now available as of September 15 and costs $98 a year or $12.95 a month. There is a 15-day free trial period, as well.
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My kids tried the trendy, new Walmart kid’s clothes brand and I had to share!
If you told me these Walmart kids clothes were from a trendy, new Instagram shop, I’d believe you. Modern designs, quality materials, and a commitment to sustainability, yet still maintaining affordable prices are just a few of the reasons people are going crazy for this new brand.
…And they just may have converted the Target shopper in me. 😏
Have you heard of the new Walmart Free Assembly kids clothing brand?!
I’m just going to be totally blunt with you all for a minute…
I have always somewhat disliked Walmart.
There. I said it. 😯 (Don’t come after me). 😅 It’s just something about the chaotic shopping atmosphere & supporting a major retailer that never had me leaving the store feeling good about my decisions. I’ve probably only stepped foot in a Walmart 5 times in the past 10 years! 😱 But this kids clothing brand, guys…
THIS. BRAND. THOUGH! 👏🏻 They’ve converted me.
And for the record, this post isn’t sponsored. I mean, I just admitted I’ve never really liked Walmart! But after hearing about the Free Assembly line and being blown away by how adorable all the looks were, I had to give it a shot with my kiddos.
Albeit, I still ordered everything online (yay for convenient free two-day shipping!), but I love these clothes so much and feel so good about all of them! Just the fact I wouldn’t even know they were from Walmart is still blowing my mind. 🤯
The attention to detail, modern tags, and quality materials are nothing like what you’re used to getting from a Walmart brand. Nothing.
Several of the Free Assembly Kids clothes in the new Fall collection also include organic cotton or recycled polyester. 👏🏻 And to top it off, they have an incredible range of sizes available starting at size 4 all the way up to size 18!
I’d even go as far as to say these are a step above Target’s popular Cat & Jack line. 😳
Here are the pieces I ordered:
I know what you’re thinking… these prices are way too much for Walmart. 😒
I hear you, friends. However, Walmart’s in-house design team has totally revamped their style and brand with these new Walmart kids’ clothes – it’s their ultimate goal for Walmart’s fashion future.
The modern silhouettes, quality fabrics, and fashion-forward details are so much more than the “Walmart fashion” you’re used to.
They’ve totally outdone themselves and trust when I say, they’re WORTH the price tag. 👏🏻
Of course, this is Hip2Save so we’re still crossing our fingers for a future sale or clearance deal. 😉
That said, I have ZERO regrets about these Walmart kids’ clothes. 😍
The flannels are thick and soft, the carpenter pants are thoughtfully designed (tough, yet trendy), and the jeans are nice and thick so I know they’ll last through many washes. They feel even better than jeans I’ve spent twice as much on before! 👏🏻
My son who is also pretty lanky loves the fit. Slim with an adjustable waistband, and a versatile wash that will make these jeans a staple all season long! Better yet, they come in packs of two!
Even the denim joggers for my daughter are thick & soft and the ribbed shirt is so timeless and cute! Plus, I love that the entire Free Assembly line is almost all organic cotton and super neutral & simple so mixing and matching freely is easy peasy – a huge bonus for this minimalist shopper! 🥰
Now, I’ve tried other Walmart kids’ clothing brands before and have always been disappointed with them after washing them, but the Free Assembly clothes continue to impress me.
And so far they stand up to all my kiddo’s crazy shenanigans. LOL. 🤣 Every mom’s dream, am I right?!
Here are a few reasons why:
- After washing, each piece of clothing still feels just as soft as when I unboxed them.
- All of the pants wash SO well – i.e. no weird wrinkling due to cheap materials.
- None of the clothes had weird shrinking in general.
- You still get convenient higher-end details like the hidden, adjustable waistbands.
Every piece fits my kiddos so well too! 😍
Not only am I a happy momma, but my kiddos love their new Walmart Free Assembly kids’ clothes!
Funny enough, they even know I’m not a Walmart shopper, so when I told them that’s where they were from, they didn’t even believe me! 😂
Needless to say, we all love the new Free Assembly kids clothes and they’re ready for Fall! 🥰🍂
Check out some other pieces I have my eye on from the Walmart Free Assembly kids line:
Target already announced their hottest kids toys for Christmas! 😱
This article is brought to you by Walmart and created by In The Know’s commerce team. If you decide to purchase products through the links below, we may receive a commission. Pricing and availability are subject to change.
If you’re into bright colors and floral patterns, then you need to check out the Walmart offerings from Ree Drummond, better known as The Pioneer Woman. Her line includes items for all over the home, but the kitchen is where she really shines. And that makes sense, given that we all know and love her for her yummy recipes and addicting cooking TV show.
Because Drummond’s line is available at Walmart, it’s already pretty affordable. But when the retailer does rollbacks? The prices get even better!
Just in time for the holiday entertaining season, Walmart just dropped the prices on a bunch of awesome kitchen items from The Pioneer Woman. A Dutch oven for less than $40? Two slow cookers for less than $30? A 10-piece cookware set for under $100? These Pioneer Woman kitchen deals are unbeatable.
Whether you’re cooking for one or a crowd during the holidays, you’ll definitely want to take advantage of these Pioneer Woman kitchen deals. Shop 11 of the best markdowns below.
1. The Pioneer Woman Timeless Beauty Enamel Cast Iron 5-Quart Dutch Oven, $39.76 (Orig. $44.97)
This bright red Dutch Oven is pretty enough to go straight from the stove to the dining room table.
2. The Pioneer Woman Vintage Floral 10-Cup Food Processor by Hamilton Beach, $42.25 (Orig. $69.99)
Make light work of chopping onions, garlic and other veggies in this pretty 10-Cup Food Processor.
3. The Pioneer Woman Vintage Floral 7-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker, $35.99 (Orig. $44.99)
Like the “set it and forget” style of cooking? Then you’ll definitely want to snag this 7-Quart Programmable Slow Cooker on sale. It’s big enough to make large batches of soups, stews and more.
4. The Pioneer Woman 1.5-Quart Slow Cooker Twin Pack, $29.96 (Orig. $39.99)
If you’re only cooking for one or two, these 1.5-Quart Slow Cookers are a great kitchen investment.
5. The Pioneer Woman Collected 16-piece Baking Set, $38.75 (Orig. $54.52)
Perfect for cobblers, cakes and more, this 16-piece Baking Set has everything you’ll need to satisfy your sweet tooth.
6. The Pioneer Woman Fiona Floral Stack & Press Glass Bowl Food Chopper, 3 Cup Capacity, $29.96 (Orig. $39.96)
Yes, this Glass Bowl Food Chopper is practical because it easily dices and mixes, but it’s also beautiful enough to leave out as a statement piece on your kitchen counter.
7. The Pioneer Woman Frontier Speckle Aluminum 10-Piece Cookware Set, $87 (Orig. $99)
Yes, you could snag this 10-Piece Cookware Set for yourself, but it would also make a really nice gift for a recent college grad or a newly married couple this holiday season.
8. The Pioneer Woman Frontier Collection 14-Piece Cutlery Set with Wood Block, $49 (Orig. $59)
This 14-Piece Cutlery Set comes in so many cool colors like mint green, turquoise and cherry red.
9. The Pioneer Woman 5-Piece Prep Set, Measuring Bowls & Cup, $18.86 (Orig. $24.98)
Cooking often requires precise measurements, so ensure you’re always on track with this whimsical Prep Set.
10. The Pioneer Woman Timeless Beauty Pre-Seasoned Plus 12″ Cast Iron Fry Pan, $24.88 (Orig. $34.88)
Sear meats, toast bread and tons more in this versatile Cast Iron Fry Pan that’s less than $25 right now.
11. The Pioneer Woman 6-Piece Collected Counter Top Set, $19.42 (Orig. $25)
Keep your kitchen counter organized and attractive with this set that includes a canister for holding utensils, a spoon rest and two small ramekins that you can use for salt and pepper.
Now, if you need ingredients to make deliciousness in these kitchen appliances, consider signing up for Walmart+. The affordable service allows you to unlock free grocery delivery from your store at preferred time slots.
If you liked this story, check out these surprisingly chic tableware finds from Walmart.
More from In The Know:
Drew Barrymore's 'Beautiful' sage green air fryer is finally back in stock
Walmart just marked down a bunch of KitchenAid stand mixers — get one for up to $100 off
5 tech items you need to get your home ready for the fall
Add some color to your kitchen with these bright cookware finds from Walmart
Walmart small iron
We updated this guide in October 2021 to include a new Cleaning Award-winning iron from Conair based on updated testing by Carolyn Forte, Director of the Cleaning Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute. We also removed sold out and discontinued products and updated pricing and availability throughout.
When you want that pressed-from-the-dry-cleaner look, you need a powerful steam iron to get your dresses, shirts and pants crisp and wrinkle-free. Sure, garment steamers can get the job done, but it's the heat and weight of a steam iron (plus the support provided by your ironing board) that assure you get the super smooth results you crave.
Thankfully, today's irons are making this once onerous job easier and quicker to do. Top models heat up quickly and have electronic controls to more accurately hold precise and safe temperature to prevent burning and scorching. They steam without dripping and are easier to use with large, see-through and removable water tanks and retractable cords.
What is the best steam iron?
These are the top recommended steam irons from Good Housekeeping Institute tests:
How we test irons
When the Good Housekeeping Institute Cleaning Lab evaluates irons, we measure the amount and rate of steam they produce, the temperatures of the bottom soleplate at various settings, the temperature swings (highs and lows) at each setting, and how hot the handle and body get, for safety. We time how long the irons take to heat up and we weigh how heavy they are. We assess how easy the controls and sprays are to use, how easy the water tank is to fill, and how likely the iron is to tip over if placed on a wobbly board.
Finally, we wrinkle and ball up cotton, linen, wool, nylon and other synthetic fabrics and allow the creases to set overnight. The next day, each swatch is ironed on the appropriate setting and we rate it on a scale of one to five for its smooth appearance using the standard guides that are part of the Textiles industry testing methods. All in all, we spent more than 150 hours testing over a hot board to evaluate 15 irons. These are the best ones you can buy:
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Best Overall Steam IronElectronic Retractable Iron
You may be familiar with the CHI brand from its hair styling tools, and, thankfully, what CHI has done for hair they are now doing for what you wear. This CHI model not only smoothed tough-to-iron fabrics like linen and heavy cotton superbly, but it also had the most powerful steam burst of any iron in our test. It's comfortable to hold and use and once you've turned the fabric selection dial, the illuminated display makes it easy to see that you've made the right choice. The water chamber is large and easy to fill and the retractable cord means it takes up less storage space. We found the scratch-resistant ceramic soleplate especially easy to glide across fabrics. This iron is such a lab favorite that whenever someone comes in to borrow an iron, we hide this one away!
- Great steam
- Soft grip handle
- Retractable cord
- Large buttons
Best Value Steam IronVitessa Iron
Even with a small price tag, the Black + Decker Vitessa ICR2020 tied for first place in our wrinkle removal tests. We love that it has six different temperature settings, allowing for a more customized ironing experience, while its nonstick soleplate gives a smooth glide that rarely snags the edges of fabric. Storing this steam iron is as simple as pushing a button thanks to the retractable cord. It took a little longer than others to heat up, but once it picks up steam, it’s hard to put down.
- Great wrinkle removal
- Retractable cord
- Takes a bit longer than others to heat up
Fastest Heating Steam IronExtremeSteam Pro Iron
The Conair ExtremeSteam Pro GI300 Iron has a heat-up time of less than 60 seconds, even at the max heat setting. It also had top scores in our steam producing tests, so you can count on it to get your clothes wrinkle-free. This iron has rubber feet to help keep it stable and make it less likely to tip over. The transparent water tank helps you see exactly how much water is in the reservoir. (Tip: Avoid drips by only filling it up to the max line.)
- Heats up quickly
- Stable when upright
- Iron can drip if the water tank is over-filled
Best Cordless Steam IronVersa Glide Cordless/Corded Iron
Use the Sunbeam Versa Glide to get out those pesky winkles without the hassle of the cord or use it with the cord for longer periods of steam and heat without placing it back on the base. The base actually attaches to the rear of the iron. It isn’t bulky and it's still very light relative to other irons we tested, even with the base attached. Plus, it’s one of the best deals around, especially for a 2-in-1 product! The vertical steam function is very strong and all of the controls were intuitive and easy to use.
- Can be used corded or cordless
- Steams well vertically
- Takes 30 minutes to automatically shut off, longer than others
Most Popular Steam Iron on AmazonSteammaster Steam Iron
Amazon reviewers loved this Sunbeam iron for its price and performance and Sunbeam irons and steamers have done well in our previous GH Cleaning Lab tests. This inexpensive iron has high-end features like a retractable cord (making it super convenient when putting it away!), a 3-way (side, flat, and upright) auto shut-off for safety and vertical steam.
One reviewer said "Being a professional seamstress, I use an iron daily. This is the best iron I have ever used!! I have had about 10 irons during my years of sewing professionally and this one is the best iron I have purchased, hands down!!!"
- Retractable cord
- Small fabric selector dial
Best Travel Steam IronOvo Portable Steam Iron
Good things do come in small packages: The palm-size Ovo will smooth out wrinkles at home and on the road. It's the tiniest iron we've seen, but it’s the perfect size for touch-ups. And at only 1.6 lbs, this iron islightweight and easy to use. Plus, the steam is continuous. We love the storage bag that’s also a resting pad. If you can use a computer mouse, you can use the Ovo!
- Super small and lightweight
- Great for travel
- Best for small areas and light touch-ups
Best Smart Steam IronVelocity 230IR Steam Iron
A unique steam sensor in the Reliable Velocity 230IR's handle makes this iron fun (and easy!) to use. It uses touch sensor technology to release steam as soon as you grasp the handle. We tested its younger sister, the 200IR, which is virtually identical to this model and found it comfortable to hold and its steam production very powerful. There's even an option to override the automatic shut-off feature, so you can steam away on longer projects if you need to without constantly having to move or readjust the iron to restart it. The Reliable's anodized aluminum (think cookware!) soleplate glides smoothly over fabrics and is also very easy to wipe clean.
- Steams by touching the handle
- Has a steam generator inside to produce more steam
Best Steam Iron for BeginnersSteam Care One Smart Temperature Iron
With no temperature dial, the Rowenta Steam Care Steam Iron DW3180 is designed to iron all fabrics at optimal heat. With its internal multi-layer design, it’s able to produce super-hot steam without making the soleplate hotter, so fabrics are less likely to scorch. The transparent water tank also makes it easy to see when you're in need of a refill, and the fine-mist spray feature is perfect for those wrinkles that just won't budge.
- Easy to use
- No fabric settings to fuss with
- Large buttons
- Eight-foot cord is shorter than some
Best Steam Iron for ProsPerfect Steam Station
If you iron in batches or do a lot of sewing or quilting, a steam station might be for you. With no automatic shutoff, it's perfect for nonstop use. The Rowenta Perfect Steam Station DG8520 delivered powerful steam blasts and smoothed fabrics from silk to heavy cotton. Also, it has an eco-mode, allowing you to reduce its energy consumption by up to 20%.
- Produces more and longer lasting steam than a traditional iron
- Great for quilters and sewers
- Takes up space on the ironing board
- Difficult to store
Best Ironing SystemFashionMaster Ironing System
Make an investment in Miele’s new ironing system, and save big by skipping the dry cleaner for items that need just a refresh. The all-in-one station delivers high-quality results with powerful steam that helps smooth everything from blouses to jackets.
With the Miele, you have an ironing board, a steamer, and an iron all rolled into one. The board itself has an air inflation (for gentle pressing of delicates) and suction function (for tougher jobs). All pieces store neatly inside and with its super large water tank, it really can take care of all your ironing needs. Our Cleaning Lab appreciated how it all folds and can be wheeled away for storage
- Includes an iron and garment steamer
- Board inflates and draws in air for more professional ironing results
- Folds and moves on wheels
- Takes up storage space
Best Handheld Steam IronTurbo ExtremeSteam Steam & Iron 2-in-1
Quickly and easily banish wrinkles with this GH Seal star and 2021 GHI Cleaning Awards winner. The steamer's added ironing soleplate works toward extra smoothing. Its wide plate doubles as an iron, both dry or with steam. In our Lab tests, we found this steamer powerful and drip-free. In fact, we restored a wrinkled duvet cover without having to remove it from the bed.
- Easy to move around
- Moves horizontally and vertically without dripping
- Reasonably priced
Carolyn Forte, Good Housekeeping InstituteDirector, Home Appliances & Cleaning Products LabCarolyn Forte, a consumer products expert, is the director of the Home Appliances & Cleaning Products Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute.
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