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The Best Garment Steamer for Under $100

When I was in college, I worked at a bridal store for two semesters.

I could write a blog entirely about the antics that took place there, from the staff to the brides. It was pure, hilarious insanity.

One of our rotating tasks was steaming the gowns and veils. The steaming center was tucked away in the very back of the store, separated from the break room by a half wall.

No one ever wanted to do it because it meant losing a chunk of your time on the floor selling. I, however, would happily volunteer to help. Hiding away from the brides, their mothers, their 45 bridesmaids, and the rest of humanity appealed to me even then.

So off I would go for hours, left alone with my thoughts, or chat with whomever else working in the back. Steaming days were the best days.

It turns out; I find garment steaming somewhat therapeutic. I zoned out as I watched the wrinkles disappear. And I felt oddly satisfied as I hung each finished dress on the completed rack.

To this day, I still enjoy the process.

I get asked almost every day to recommend a good steamer. Over the years, I’ve tried several, from travel garment steamers and handheld steamers to standing models and professional full-size steamers. But there is one that I recommend time and again.

The Best Garment Steamer 

best garment steamer


Our Full Review: PurSteam Elite Garment Steamer

My favorite steamer is the PurSteam Elite Garment Steamer. It’s high quality, well priced, and its features are useable.

Don’t you hate it when you buy something, and you don’t need all its bells and whistles? 

Me too. 

Here are the other reasons why I love this steamer and use it all the time.

Long Steam Time 

This steamer heats up in under 60 seconds and provides a steady, strong steam stream for one hour. Most only go for 20 – 30 minutes. That makes a huge difference in getting through a family of four’s clothes for the week. My kids wear uniforms to school, and using a steamer instead of an iron for wrinkle removal and freshening up all of their pieces saves me hours. 

Bonus: The adjustable hanger is helpful. Sometimes I use it if I only have one or two items to steam. Other times I line up garments on my rolling rack and work down the line. Either way, the machine is easy to use. 

Save on Dry Cleaning

I used to have a terrible habit of dry cleaning anything I didn’t want to deal with or just because I didn’t want to iron it.

know, don’t judge; we’re all works in progress.

So a quality steamer helps because it lets you freshen up your garments in between professional cleanings and, in some cases, eliminates the need. In either case, steamers work well enough to save a fair bit of money on your dry cleaning bill. 

Easy To Use

Another thing I love about this steamer is how easy it is to use. Whenever I recommend it, I make sure to add that the process is simple enough for beginners, while the results are on-par with a professional.

PurSteam recommends using distilled water in the steamer, but you can use tap water if you want to.

You can use the steamer head directly on a wide variety of fabrics, and then snap on the fabric brush to eliminate wrinkles and control lint.

It comes with a large, easy-to-fill water tank, so you don’t have to worry about constantly refilling the water reservoir during longer sessions. It also heats in 45 to 60 seconds. Plus, with steam that reaches up to 212°F, you can steam heavy fabrics much quicker than with other steamers.

You Can “Unshrink” Things

Awhile back, I read that a steamer can help you unshrink specific garments depending on the fabric. I didn’t believe it until I tried it myself. 

Run the steamer over the garment and gently pull the fabric as you move across it. You’ll start to see the fabric relax.

This trick works on cotton, some poly blends, and different knits. Because the steam in this particular steamer is so strong, it makes it quick and easy to bring shrunk garments back to their original size and shape.  

Great for Other Household Tasks

After our remodel, as we decorated all our new rooms, I’ve used our steamer to freshen up fabrics, steam out curtains, and bedding fresh out of its packaging. 

Although it’s not as portable as a smaller iron steamer or travel steamer, it’s still very convenient and portable. You can easily roll this from room to room. The cord is long enough to go where you need to within a space, and the arm extends to reach high up. 

Pursteam has more than 3,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, including praise for their warranty and customer service. I don’t have any personal experience with them, and as usual, this is not a sponsored post, but it’s nice to know if you have an issue; they will take care of it. 

Our Style Content is Inspired by Our Readers

Our readership inspires all of our posts and is not sponsored or paid for by brands or retailers. 

Recommendations are based on my experience as a personal stylist and wardrobe consultant for over a decade. I worked with busy, down-to-earth women who wanted to look chic and feel confident but were often confused by so much of retail. 

Some links are affiliate links, which means if you purchase via our site, we receive a small commission.

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The Best Garment Steamer for Under $100

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Megan Kristel

Megan Kristel is an entrepreneur, working mom, and former personal stylist. Tired of the one-dimensional portrayal of women online, she founded The Well Dressed Life as a resource for other professional women.

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Irene Rossi

Tuesday 11th of April 2023

The hand held Purr Steam iron is pretty nice too! Works great! Best iron I have ever owned!I really have no room for the garment steamer but it has high recommendations from my niece and sister.

Jacqueline CoellnHough

Thursday 25th of February 2021

Hi Meghan, I picked this up a few years ago based on your recommendation and have found it good to use. There are some fabrics that seem to hold a wrinkle, crease, or fold after ironing or steaming. Some of these creases make the item look sloppy, like you couldn't be bothered. Any recommendations on what might work in those situations? Or maybe the answer is to avoid certain fabrics? Thanks, Jacqueline


Thursday 25th of February 2021

I need a recommendation for a handheld steamer for home because our home is small and we wouldn't have room for this upright rolling steamer you suggested here. Thank you!


Thursday 25th of February 2021

Do you have any recommendations for travel size steamer..


Thursday 26th of March 2020

I requested this for Mother's Day about a year ago based on your recommendation and have loved it!

Megan Kristel

Thursday 26th of March 2020



Thursday 26th of March 2020

Awesome! I asked for one for Christmas last year (hi, i'm old) and the one I received was junk. Purchasing this one now. Thank you!

Megan Kristel

Thursday 26th of March 2020

LOL! I asked for a power washer for my birthday a few years ago!


Saturday 20th of April 2019

I keep hearing wonderful things about steamers and how they cut time and are AMAZING! I found a travel one with 4.5 stars on Amazon and since I’m traveling in the next week and hate hotel irons I snatched it up! I am extremely disappointed. Either I’m not doing it right or the steamer band wagon is not for me. It too me twice as long to steam a garment which basically got it ready for me to iron. Am I missing something?? Doing something wrong? Help. A steamer would definitely take up less room but I need ironed (looking) clothes.

Megan Kristel

Tuesday 23rd of April 2019

It's hard for me to comment on something like this because I don't know what kind of steamer you bought or how you're using it. The steamer featured above is not for travel, and likely has more features than a travel one. I think if you use it as directed it works the way it should. However, a steamer won't make something look like it was ironed with starch.

Mary Beth Burns

Thursday 18th of April 2019

I bought my first steamer over 25 years ago and paid more than $250 for it. Would you believe I still use it! It was the best investment I ever made! I can't even imagine the amount of money I have saved over the years on dry cleaning alone. And it is so much easier on the fabrics. I would advise anyone to purchase a great quality steamer, it is well worth the investment. And they have certainly gone down in price so you don't have to pay what I did over 25 years ago.

Megan Kristel

Tuesday 23rd of April 2019

I totally believe it! What a great buy!


Tuesday 16th of April 2019

Perfect timing. I desperately need a steamer and never have time to research. Thank you!


Tuesday 16th of April 2019

I'm with Samantha. Ordered. Done. Thanks so much. I too have wanted to purchase a steamer but didn't know which one to get.


Tuesday 16th of April 2019


This post was timely. I've been looking for a good steamer.

Thanks a bunch!!


Tuesday 16th of April 2019

Thank you! Ordered. Done. Needed a steamer and didn't know which one to purchase. Your recommendations are always perfect. Looking forward to steaming my wardrobe later this week!


Tuesday 16th of April 2019

A steamer was on my wish list so I am so glad you recommended one. I was laughing when you said you thought steaming was therapeutic. I feel the same way about ironing!


Tuesday 16th of April 2019

I am finally getting the closet of my dreams this summer. I would like to keep the steamer in there since my laundry room is down on the first floor. Do you see any issues with steaming in a walk-in closet?

Neen James

Tuesday 16th of April 2019

I bought this immediately when you showed me yours years ago and it's the BEST and I also use it for duvet covers, reduces the items I send for Dry Cleaning now and I have a travel steamer permanently packed in my carry on - this is a game changer! And I feel so grown up using it :)