Reviews You Can Rely On

Steamfast SF-717 Mini Review

This compact steam iron acts as a budget-friendly travel companion but lacks the power for daily use
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Steamfast SF-717 Mini Review
Credit: Steamfast
Price:  $30 List
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Manufacturer:   Steamfast
By Michelle Powell and Hayley Thomas  ⋅  May 3, 2023
  • Ironing Performance - 35% 4.8
  • Steam Output - 25% 2.0
  • Ease of Use - 25% 4.2
  • Heating - 15% 3.6

Our Verdict

The Steamfast SF-717 is a compact, travel, and budget-friendly iron for those who want something minimal to take on the road. If you are looking for a small option to whip out in the hotel room and give your shirt a once-over before a big meeting, this portable model may be what you're after — though it's not our favorite tiny iron we've tested. But if you are looking for something powerful enough for household chores and agile enough for a detailed job, you should check out some of the other options in our test suite. This iron may be a great secondary option for those on the move, but it's not meant to be your one-and-only.
Lacks power
No steam burst
No water spray
Important Safety Recall
As of April 27, 2023, this model of Steamfast iron has been recalled by Vornado, the manufacturer. The official warning states, “The power cord can become damaged near the cord bushing, which can lead to overheating of the cord, posing fire and burn hazards. In addition, cord damage near the bushing can result in exposed copper wires, posing a shock hazard.” This SF-717 model is being pulled from retailers. If you already own one of these irons, you can reach out to Vornado to inquire about a refund.

Our Analysis and Test Results

The Steamfast Mini does not win any awards for its power or its performance. Its only claim to fame is the fact that it is both travel and budget-friendly. Read on to find out if this tiny iron is the right option for you.

Performance Comparison

steamfast sf-717 mini - a travel-sized iron with travel sized power.
A travel-sized iron with travel sized power.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ironing Performance

The Steamfast Mini is not only small in stature, but its power output is minimal as well. It simply cannot compete with the larger, more powerful full-size options in our test suite. It removed most shallow wrinkles in linen and cotton but struggled with polyester and silk. The glide across cotton and linen was not very smooth, requiring additional effort when working with these fabrics. It stuck a little when working with silk, too, struggling to get all the wrinkles out. Polyester required a significant amount of pressure and additional heat to remove wrinkles, and some remained. We also noticed water dribbles when ironing synthetics.

steamfast sf-717 mini - the mini does not glide smoothly on most fabrics.
The Mini does not glide smoothly on most fabrics.
Credit: Laura Casner

Steam Output

We were not expecting much when we tested this tiny steam iron, and we were not surprised by the results. The Mini features just four small steam holes at the top of the soleplate, which is far less than what most of the options in our test suite come equipped with. Compared to many other models we tested with up to 400 steam holes, we're not particularly surprised that this iron lets off some of the lowest amounts of steam of any we've tested. It's not the least steam, though, despite having the fewest escape points for said steam.

steamfast sf-717 mini - here you can see the four tiny steam holes found at the top of the...
Here you can see the four tiny steam holes found at the top of the soleplate.
Credit: Laura Casner


We already mentioned that the Mini doesn't pack much of a punch in the power department, and this was confirmed in our heating test. The average temperature of the soleplate hit just 288° Fahrenheit. This is rather low compared to the larger options in our test suite. The heat is also not dispersed evenly, resulting in a 60° difference in temperature from the top of the soleplate to the bottom.

steamfast sf-717 mini - the mini offers minimal power.
The Mini offers minimal power.
Credit: Laura Casner


The Mini does not come with water spray or steam blast. It is also challenging to maneuver around buttons, pleats, and other hard-to-reach places, making detail work difficult. Additionally, the nose doesn't get very hot, further limiting its detailing ability.

steamfast sf-717 mini - due to its general size and shape, this model is not what we...
Due to its general size and shape, this model is not what we consider agile.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ease of Use

The Mini may be minimal, but that does not make it user-friendly. The 7.5 foot long cord wraps around the handle, which is convenient, but the cord feels rather bulky when compared to other small appliances. That being said, anything shorter would hinder your ability to work with larger items. It is also worth noting that you need to wrap the cord around your wrist while ironing to keep it from dragging and wrinkling up your fabric. The rounded rubber edge on the handle offers some grip, and the decent-sized groove between the handle and the base allows you to hold it in whatever way feels most comfortable. As for filling it up, the soft rubber plug is easy to open, but the small hole makes spilling inevitable.

steamfast sf-717 mini - lift the little gray flap back to fill up the mini.
Lift the little gray flap back to fill up the Mini.
Credit: Laura Casner

Should You Buy the Steamfast SF-717 Mini?

The Steamfast Mini gets a majority of easy jobs done, as long as you're willing to put some elbow grease into the process. It is compact and travel-friendly with a nice handle, and those are genuinely its only redeeming factors. While this mini steam iron has a mini price tag to match, it is only a good value if you plan to travel with it.

What Other Irons Should You Consider?

The Steamfast Mini is the lowest-scoring steam iron we tested, so you can only go upwards from here. If you need a compact travel iron, our top choice is the Sunbeam Hot-2-Trot, which, while it's not without its own flaws, performs much better and costs roughly the same. If you're looking at the Steamfast Mini as a budget option, consider spending just a bit more on a full-size, fully-functioning steam iron like the PurSteam Pro 1800W, which is great for big jobs, the Black+Decker D3030 Allure, a solid choice for detailing, or even the top-scoring CHI Steam Titanium, with excellent all-around performance for roughly twice the price of the Mini.

steamfast sf-717 mini - we appreciate the little clip that secures the end of the chord.
We appreciate the little clip that secures the end of the chord.
Credit: Laura Casner

Michelle Powell and Hayley Thomas