The 8 Best Travel Steamers of 2022

The affordable and compact HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer is our top pick

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TripSavvy’s Picks

When it comes to a travel steamer, we wanted to provide you with an overall choice that was affordable, compact, and had a decent water tank capacity–and the best option was the HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer. And for a budget pick, we like the PurSteam Handheld Steamer.

When it comes to traveling, wrinkled clothes are nearly unavoidable. Sure, you could use that iron in your hotel room or bring one along, but irons aren’t the best at removing wrinkles from every type of fabric. That’s why we “stan” with travel steamers. 

Hotels and rental properties typically have an iron on hand, but we’ve seen a major lack of steamers–even among the 5-star chain and boutique properties. So, it’s good that companies have been shrinking their steamers to be more travel friendly. 

Travel steamers come in various sizes, have different water capacities, and heat at different rates. Below, we’ve listed our favorite travel steamers, including a few we’ve tested, some for the international traveler, and those that don’t take up too much of your precious suitcase space.

Best Overall: HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer

HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer

HOMEASY

What We Like
  • Affordable, easy to hold, and heats in 25 seconds

  • Brush attachment

  • It breaks down into two parts for packing

  • 150-milliliter water tank for 10 minutes of steaming

What We Don't Like
  • It doesn’t stand up on its own 

We’ve been using the HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer for our personal travel for quite some time, and we couldn’t think of a better steamer to be our “overall pick.” This affordable steamer has an easy-to-hold design. In fact, the handle is also the 150-milliliter water tank that offers up to 10 minutes of steaming. On our last trip, we steamed about four pieces of clothing before refilling the water tank. 

The HOMEASY Travel Clothes Steamer is ready to steam in about 25 seconds but can also be a dry iron if you prefer those hard straight lines on a collared shirt. There’s an included brush attachment, and the cord is 6 feet long. If you need to set the steamer down mid-steam, keep in mind that it is top-heavy and may fall forward. 

Our favorite aspect of the steamer? It can be broken into two pieces and placed between packed clothes and shoes. 

Price at time of publish: $30

Water capacity: 150 milliliters | Heat time: 25 seconds | Weight: 2.19 pounds | Cord length: 6 feet

Best Budget: PurSteam Handheld Steamer

PurSteam Handheld Steamer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Affordable and excellent handheld design

  • The power cord is 8 feet long

  • 130-milliliter water tank capacity

  • Shuts off when water tank is empty

What We Don't Like
  • Not very compact

  • Only 800 wattages

  • It takes a minute and a half to heat up

You asked for the best budget travel steamer, and we found it: the PurSteam Handheld Steamer. It may not be a very compact travel steamer, but it provides a decent water tank with a 130-milliliter capacity for the price. And when the water runs out, the steamer turns off automatically, preventing any accidents that might occur. 

Unfortunately, you’ll have to wait 90 seconds for this steamer to heat up, but when it does, you’ll have 8 feet of cord length to move about your accommodations, steaming clothes where you see fit. 

Portable travel steamers tend to have wattages between the 700 to 850 range, so it’s not abnormal that the PurSteam Handheld Steamer works on only 800 watts. We’d be surprised if you got 10 minutes of steam time, as the brand advertises, because, with that low wattage, you’ll have to steam for longer because the creases and wrinkles will be harder to remove—just something to keep in mind. 

Price at time of publish: $20

Water capacity: 130 milliliters | Heat time: 90 seconds | Weight: 3.78 pounds | Cord length: 8 feet

Best Splurge: STEAMERY Cirrus 3 Travel Steamer

STEAMERY Cirrus 3 Travel Steamer

Amazon

What We Like
  • On and off switch, and it stands sturdily on its own

  • Steam and iron in one 

  • Steam only releases when you press the button

  • Shuts down automatically after 30 minutes of inactivity

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

  • 90-milliliter water tank 

We had a chance to test the Cirrus 3, the newest in the line of STEAMERY travel steamers. This steamer doubles as an iron and is perhaps one of the sleekest on this list. It also has an incredible steam power that works wonders on wrinkly clothes. 

The Cirrus 3 has an on/off button that we had to press after plugging it into the outlet. A light flashes around the steam button for about 30 seconds as the steamer heats up. When it’s ready to steam, the light stops flashing. We were able to steam two to three items on a full water tank, depending on how large and wrinkled the clothing items were. 

To steam, we had to press and hold the steamer button. When we paused or needed to exchange one clothing item for another, we released the button, and the steam stopped. The steam button, combined with an anti-puff feature–which minimizes water leakage–ensured that the water in the tank dispenses only when needed. In fact, water never leaked during our testing. Because of these two features, the steam time produced from Cirrus 3’s 90-milliliter water tank (which is on the small side) extends to match steamers with larger tanks. 

On testy wrinkles and to make clean lines, we used the iron plate and the included pad. The iron plate gets incredibly hot and had no issue against tough creases. We appreciated that the steamer stands independently without falling over and comes with a rubber cover for the iron plate. And if we ever forget to turn off the steamer, the auto shut-down feature will turn the machine off after 30 minutes of inactivity. 

While it may be pricey and is not the most compact steamer on this list, the Cirrus 3 removes wrinkles more effectively than some cheaper, smaller versions we’ve tried. Business travelers and those who like to look sharp on vacation would be wise to buy one. 

Price at time of publish: $180

Water capacity: 90 milliliters | Heat time: 30 seconds | Weight: 1.9 pounds | Cord length: 7.5 feet

Most Compact: CHI Steam Handheld Garment Steamer

CHI Steam Handheld Garment Steamer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Ready to steam in 35 seconds

  • 10 grams of steam per minute

  • Save water and steam with the steam button

  • Thin and lightweight design, perfect for packing

What We Don't Like
  • Small water tank

  • Only 800 watts of power

Remember the CHI hair straightener we were all obsessed with? CHI now offers a travel steamer: the CHI Steam Handheld Garment Steamer. We chose this steamer as the most compact travel steamer because of its design. Although it’s 10 inches in length, it’s thin in shape, so you can easily slip it into a travel tote or on the side of your suitcase, and it won’t take up much room.  

Because of the shape, there are some drawbacks to this steamer. CHI doesn’t provide the water tank capacity, though it doesn’t look that large, and the brand advertises that you only get five minutes of continual steam. CHI mentions that the steamer outputs 10 grams of steam per minute, but it’s such an odd measurement that we’re not sure how to translate that for you. 

You’ll have to press and hold a steam button to release steam. This should help with conserving some water. With only 800 wattages of power, it’s not the strongest steamer on the list, but it’s small and light enough to barely take up any room in your travel bags. It could be an excellent travel choice if you’re willing to refill it occasionally and take your time steaming.

Price at time of publish: $49

Water capacity: Not listed | Heat time: 30 seconds | Weight: 1.1 pounds | Cord length: 6 feet

Most Versatile: HOMETOP Professional Handheld Steam Iron

HOMETOP Professional Handheld Steam Iron

Amazon

What We Like
  • 1300 watts of energy

  • It heats in 40 seconds and has a 150-milliliter water tank 

  • 15 minutes of steam time

  • It works as a steamer, dry iron, and steam iron

What We Don't Like
  • Not very compact

  • Suggests distilled water 

We understand that some folks aren’t ready to move on entirely from irons, so we put the HOMETOP Professional Handheld Steam Iron on this list. It may look like a longer, thinner iron, but this product functions as a steamer, dry iron, and steam iron. 

With a 1300 wattage capability, this travel steamer has a phenomenal energy output and should easily remove wrinkles. Combined with the 150-milliliter water tank, you should get up to 15 minutes worth of steam time. And if you run out of steam, you can immediately begin dry ironing with the iron plate. It may not be the most compact travel steamer on this list, but it’s surprisingly lightweight. 

Our only hang-up is that it suggests you use distilled water, which isn’t feasible when traveling. Of course, the brand advertises that tap water is fine if you properly clean water out of the water tank–but even then, the product may not last as long as if you used distilled water. 

Price at time of publish: $50

Water capacity: 15o milliliters | Heat time: 40 seconds | Weight: 2.5 pounds | Cord length: 7.5 feet

Quickest Heat Time: Bear Travel Steamer

Bear Travel Steamer

Amazon

What We Like
  • Affordable, compact size, and additional brush tool included

  • Impressive 1000 wattage

  • It takes 10 seconds to heat up

  • No leakage no matter the angle

What We Don't Like
  • The water tank is only 120 milliliters

Some travelers like to go, go, go and don’t have the luxury of a lot of time to steam their clothes. After 10 seconds, the Bear Travel Steamer will be ready to attack those pesky wrinkles on your travel ‘fit. That’s a speedy heating time for such an affordable travel steamer. 

We’re also impressed by the steamer’s 1000 wattage. A 120-milliliter water tank capacity is in the average range, but we’re not sure if the wattage and water tank capacity could result in 10 to 15 minutes of steam time, as the brand advertises. Customers back up this hunch, noting that they must refill the tank often. Still, the brush attachment is a bonus, and the compact size means it won’t take up too much space in your travel bag. 

Price at time of publish: $25

Water capacity: 120 milliliters | Heat time: 10 seconds | Weight: 1.4 pounds | Cord length: 6 feet

Best for European Travel: Rowenta Xcel Steam Travel DR7051 Hand-Held Garment Steamer

Rowenta Xcel Steam Travel DR7051 Hand-Held Garment Steamer

Amazon

What We Like
  • 150-milliliter water tank, and the cord is 9 feet long

  • Ready to use in 45 seconds

  • Works with both 220 and 120 voltage

  • Includes fabric brush, steam bonnet, and door hook

What We Don't Like
  • Somewhat bulky

Love to travel to Europe? We do too. But on our last trip to Germany, we fried a travel steamer because it wasn’t designed for 220 voltage. We should have come prepared with a dual voltage steamer–like the Rowenta Xcel Steam Travel DR7051 Hand-Held Garment Steamer. 

In Europe, appliances run on 220V, and in the U.S. and Canada–it’s 120 voltage. Most travel steamers bought in the U.S. are designed for 120 voltage, so if you plan to visit Europe, you will need a dual travel steamer, like this Rowenta. Not only does it work at home and abroad, but the steamer offers a 150-milliliter water tank capacity and heats up in 45 seconds. 

You’re not limited with a 9-foot cord, and you can utilize additional accessories like a fabric brush, steam bonnet, and door hook. Just make sure to leave room in your suitcase as this is a somewhat bulky travel steamer. 

Price at time of publish: $61

Water capacity: 150 milliliters | Heat time: 45 seconds | Weight: 2.5 pounds | Cord length: 9 feet

Most Technologically Advanced: Conair Turbo ExtremeSteam 2-in-1 Garment Steamer

4.2
Conair Turbo ExtremeSteam 2-in-1

Amazon

What We Like
  • Doubles as an iron 

  • 250 mL water tank and a 10-second heat-up time

  • Four steam settings from low to turbo

  • The smart sensor stops steam when placed on a flat surface

  • Includes a bonnet, creaser, and 2-in-1 silicone band and bristle brush

What We Don't Like
  • Pricey

  • Bulky

Say hello to the Conair Turbo ExtremeSteam–a premium choice among travel steamers. It may be on the pricier end, but this Conair travel steamer doubles as a dry iron and is very technologically advanced. You only have to wait 10 seconds for the steamer to heat up before choosing among four steam settings–low, mid, high, or turbo. 

With 1875 watts of turbo steaming power and a whopping 250-milliliter water tank capacity, you can decrease and de-wrinkle quite a few vacation outfits before needing to refill. Conair advertises that you'll get only 10 minutes of steam time, but we'd wager you'll have a bit more. 

Accessories like a bonnet (for delicate fabrics), creaser, and a 2-in-1 silicone band and bristle (to stretch fabric tightly and remove wrinkles) are a nice plus. And if you set this steamer down to take a rest, a smart sensor will prevent steam from escaping, so you don't waste power, water, or steam. We'd say it was the perfect travel steamer if it weren't so bulky or pricey. 

Price at time of publish: $59

Water capacity: 250 milliliters | Heat time: 10 seconds | Weight: 3.39 pounds | Cord length: 8 feet

What to Look for in Travel Steamers

Size

You’d think that all travel steamers were the same size–small, compact, tiny enough to fit in a suitcase–but they come in all different shapes and heights. We’ve seen some the size of our hand and others similar in length and width to a woman’s size 7 shoe. Always look at the dimensions before buying. Consider travel steamers that break down into smaller pieces because they could be easier to pack. 

Cost

Travel steamers cost anywhere from $19 to $200. Those in the $20 to $50 range are usually of good quality. Of course, if you seek additional accessories or technological advances, check out the travel steamers over $75. 

Wattage

Wattage may seem inconsequential for a travel steamer, but it’s not. A steamer’s power is measured in wattage. The higher the wattage, the more efficient it will be at releasing steam and removing wrinkles. At-home steamers typically have 1000 to 2000 wattage, whereas you’ll find that travel steamers have wattages that range between 750 and 850 watts. Lucky for you, we’ve included plenty of travel steamers on this list that are either at or above the 1000-wattage range. 

Steam Time

Steam time is dependent on the water tank capacity and wattage. Be wary of the steam times advertised by different brands. We’ve found in our own experience and reading reviews that they’re not always accurate. 

Travel steamers with 150-milliliter water tanks will last longer than those with 120 to 130-milliliter tanks. We’ve found that those with 150-milliliter water tanks will typically offer 10 minutes worth of steam time, though it could be slightly shorter or longer depending on other things like wattage, steam capacity (like if the steamer has a low setting versus a high setting), or if the steamer turns off when placed on a flat setting. 

Be wary of travel steamers that claim to last more than 15 minutes. It’s not impossible, but the compact size of a travel steamer alone would make us think this was unlikely.

Frequently Asked Questions
  • Is a steamer or iron better?

    We think a steamer is better because it’s a safer option on a wider range of fabrics. For instance, an iron’s soleplate can damage delicate materials like silk, but a steamer is less likely to. You also don’t need an ironing board or a towel to use a steamer, such as is needed with an iron.

    Sometimes iron plates get so hot that they can melt certain materials on your clothes. The plate can stain another clothing item with that melted substance if not cleaned properly.   


    Of course, there are benefits to an iron compared to a steamer. An iron can remove super tough wrinkles and/or create strong, decorative lines on dress shirts and jeans. Thankfully, you can have the best of both worlds regarding steamers and irons, as many steamers double as irons with an added iron plate. 

  • Will my travel steamer work in Europe and other countries?

    A travel steamer can work in Europe and other countries, but you’ll need to check the voltage of the steamer before buying it. In the US, Canada, and Mexico, our appliances typically run on 120 voltage, while in Europe and other parts of the world, it’s 220 voltage. It would help if you bought a travel steamer like the Rowenta listed above that has dual voltage capabilities, or you’ll need to use a converter on a 120-voltage travel steamer to convert the voltage to 220 voltage. Trust us when we say you can’t just use an adapter with your travel steamer in Europe. A converter should do the trick, but if you want to be safe, just buy a dual-voltage travel steamer.

Why Trust Tripsavvy

Author Alex Temblador is an outdoor and travel journalist who lives in Texas. In addition to working out–running, lifting, hiking, kayaking, and more–at least five days a week, Alex seeks out adventurous travels all around the world. Through her career as an outdoor and travel journalist, she has rappelled in Mexico, kayaked in Puerto Rico and Thailand, skied in Telluride and Montana, surfed in Zihuatanejo, scuba dived in Bonaire, hiked in Peru and Switzerland, and completed a one-day, 100-mile cycling event in 100-degree weather in North Texas.

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