people's choice

The Best Irons on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

Photo: Courtesy New Line Cinema

Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy, but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed products and single out the most convincing ones. (You can learn more about our rating system and how we pick each item here.)

And while we’ve written before about all sorts of tools for keeping your clothing fresh — including wool laundry balls, clothes-drying racks, and down detergent — here, we’ve rounded up the best irons as praised by the most enthusiastic reviewers on Amazon.

Best-rated iron

Rowenta Focus Micro Steam Iron
$65

Close to 4,000 purchasers give this Rowenta steam iron five-stars, with dozens praising the quality of the German manufacturing. “As soon as I pulled it out of the box I was impressed by the quality. It was SO much nicer than my old Sunbeam. Then I saw ‘Made in Germany’ stamped on the side and it all made sense,” one reviewer writes. Many note that it’s on the pricey end for an iron, but the vast majority report being very pleased with their purchase and say the cost is justified. “This is, without a doubt, the Mercedes-Maybach of irons,” one customer writes. “When you only buy an iron once every 20+ years, you might as well spring for the best and most expensive available.”

Reviewers also love  the extra long power cord and the powerful “blast of steam” that comes out of the bottom. “I can iron a linen shirt that has been balled up in the back of my closet in about 3 minutes with this iron. It’s just that good,” one reviewer writes. Many also mention the fact that it “decalcifies automatically so you can use regular tap water” in the tank. As one reviewer explains, “For some irons, that could prove disastrous. You don’t have to worry about that with this guy.”

Best-rated (less expensive) iron

Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot 800-Watt Compact Nonstick Soleplate Travel Iron
$16

“Small footprint, big impact,” writes one reviewer of this travel-size iron, adding that it’s “small enough for my hands and big enough to get the job done.” Another reviewer who has been compulsively buying travel irons — “I have owned four travel irons over the years” — says “it performed as well as my full-size Rowenta iron.” And while a few report actually traveling with this, more than 10 percent of reviewers say the small size makes it great for quilting. “I make quilts for a living, and this iron is perfect for ironing the seams as well as the blocks, and it gets very hot,” one explains. Others think it’s good for small spaces: “In a small apartment or dorm room, one could use this as the only iron, particularly if used with a tabletop ironing board that could be hung on a closet rod.”

Best iron with high steam output

Black+Decker Digital Advantage Professional Steam Iron
$30

“As any busy normal human would, I researched for 3-plus hours to find an iron that checked all the boxes: functional, had an easy-pour steam area, and easy-to-understand settings,” writes one reviewer. “Not only did this one go beyond that (digital number settings that beep when the temperature is right!), but it also turns off if it is facedown and not moving for more than 30 seconds.” More than 3,000 other reviewers give this iron five stars too, with many specifically praising its steam function. “There is a setting that keeps the steam coming without pushing a button,” one writes, while another says, “It does not leak with the steam setting on either, like my old iron.” The steam component, combined with this iron’s other attributes — which include “no drips, no splatters, amazing steam, perfect weight, great soleplate (stainless and smoooooth), excellent ability to get around buttons and in pleats with the ridge around the point” — have one reviewer even saying, “It’s almost fun to iron with this baby.”

Best simple iron

Shark Steam Iron
$25

Reviewers love this Shark steam iron for its simplicity. “I was a little nervous that an iron at this price point wouldn’t meet up to my ironing expectations, boy was I wrong,” one reviwer writes. “This iron works amazingly well and gets the job done. I iron weekly and so far it’s been fantastic.” Another says that it “Steams nice, heats fast. Doesn’t have all the stops and whistles, but at this price I can live without them.” Many also note that this iron has some weight to it, which they say helps it iron more effectively because it’s “heavy enough that you don’t need to add extra muscle for a crisp look.” And the looks don’t hurt either, as multiple reviewers mention. One calls it a, “Nice little iron. Easy to use, and looks cool — as cool as an iron can look — so I like it.”

Best iron with retractable cord

Sunbeam Steammaster Steam Iron
$27

There are a few standout features on this iron, but according to this user, “The best feature, however, in my mind is the cord.” Like more than one-fifth of reviewers, they love that it is retractable. “It rewinds into the iron. I know that is a simple pleasure, but really — one that should be included on all irons. No muss, no fuss, just a button and away it goes.” Others love that even though it is self-cleaning, “it never self-cleans all over your clean clothes, leaving stains,” and dozens mention its leak-free ease of use. One reviewer, however, can’t quite put their finger on why this is so great, but knows it is: “I don’t know what kind of magic voodoo this thing does, but it is great! I like to call it my magic wand. I sometimes sneak downstairs to iron just for fun because this thing is so amazing.”

Best (less expensive) iron with retractable cord

Hamilton Beach Steam Iron With Retractable Cord
$25

Dozens of purchasers say the retractable cord on this iron often comes in handy. “It makes ironing so much easier. My previous iron had a cord that tangled up all the time and it was so frustrating,” one customer writes. Another adds that the cord design also helps when the iron is not in use, calling this iron, “the iron we always wanted. With the retractable cord feature, it convenient stores away in the smallest areas.” Many praise this as an affordable and effective iron, and one reviewer even says it was recommended to them by a pro: “I got this one because my sewing instructor said that it works better than her more expensive ones.”

Best travel iron

Steamfast Mini Travel Steam Iron
$16

Over 1,400 purchasers give this compact and affordable travel iron five-stars, and unlike our best-rated (less expensive) pick nearly a third of reviewers actually travel with it. “I recently took this iron on a trip to Europe and used it to iron out a whole suitcase of t-shirts and lightweight blouses,” one reviewer writes. They add that another convenient feature for travelers is that “you can use just the steam to remove wrinkles as well.” Another reviewer mentions that it comes with the accessories that make using it on-the-go a breeze, like “a little bag to put it in, and a cup to fill the reservoir so you don’t make a mess. The cord wraps around it so it’s not all over the place and it’s perfect for travel, on the go, or for everyday use.” And according to one seasoned traveler, “I’ve had it for 5 years now, and it ALWAYS follows me overseas…I travel with just carry-ons most times, and TSA/Europe airport security don’t give it a second glance. It’s shaped well enough that it’s easily identified.”