The Steam Buddy and Pressa Bella were introduced with images of overworked women slaving over a hot iron and a basket of clothes claiming to end this age old household chore once and for all. They both work using a combination of hot air and water to deliver a powerful punch of steam to clothing. Clothes can be ironed hanging up on a rack to reduce the need for ironing boards and storage space. They also are advertised with the underlying element of ease and safety, reducing the risk of burning and ruining clothes because the hot iron never has to actually touch the clothing! Independent consumer tests on both products show that they do work as designed, but not necessarily as well as in the infomercials and that often some articles of clothing with collars or creases will need to either be professionally cleaned or ironed with an old fashion board and iron!
The Steam Buddy is available for around $30 when you include shipping and handling and offers a 30 day money back guarantee. It does heat in around 6 seconds and is lightweight to use weighing far less than an iron. It delivers a pretty hefty amount of steam and works well especially when clothes are hanging up on a rack or hanger. The one downfall is that it won’t get the wrinkles out of collars or place pleats in dress pants like an iron. The Steam Buddy is also fairly small and has a minimal surface area that can mean steaming out the wrinkles takes a little bit more time than imagined. Although the product is supposed eliminates odors, consumers dispute this claim and insist that garments do need to be washed properly in order to smell clean even when using the Steam Buddy. One of the nice features is that the product is compact and easy to travel with and comes with cleaning brush attachments, a dry cleaner and a free creaser. The Steam Buddy reviews do show that it is a great way to iron out the wrinkles in draperies, sheers and other items that do not necessarily wash very well.
The Pressa Bella is shaped more like an iron than the Steam Buddy and is a larger appliance with a bigger surface area. It is an upscale version of the Steam Buddy and the price reflects that as it costs about three times as much ($80). One nice feature is that it has different settings that can be used based on the type of fabric that you are ironing. It fits comfortably in the hand and has a rubberized grip that makes it easy to use. The Pressa Bella is lightweight, a little cumbersome for travel but does do the job of ironing out the wrinkles in most clothes. Even silks and fabrics that have rhinestones can be ironed without worry. One nice feature is that the Pressa Bella has a duality that means it can be used as a steam ironer or a conventional iron and it is more apt to put creases in pants and performs better on collars than the smaller Steam Buddy. Like conventional irons the Pressa Bella comes with a surge button that can deliver a higher heat bolt of steam when needed. It works well on draperies and sheers as well. Consumers found that the claim to eliminate odors was not completely accurate and most felt that it did not perform much better than a regular iron.
Both of these products are useful and are much safer than conventional irons. Because they do not touch clothing by design the risk of scorching clothes is minimal. Choosing between the two really depends on your dry cleaning needs and the amount of clothes that you regularly either send out or iron at home. For minimal ironing needs the Steam Buddy will prove effective but for more frequent ironers the Pressa Bella with the added options and features makes for a much more useful product. While both will work as designed and advertised; consumers across the board claim that they do not work as well at home as they performed during the infomercials; possibly due to the fact that specialty sprays may have been used when filming the advertisements.