Remember the time I revealed my super secret super-duper OCD powers? Well, like Tony Stark from The Avengers, IRONMAN (or should that be, IRONING MAN?), was put through his paces this week when I had the opportunity to test out the latest in the range of revolutionary steam generators (or whiz-bang, tricked-out steam irons), in the form of the Philips PerfectCare Aqua. And trust me, my OCD superpowers were definitely put to the test.
Right off the bat when I opened the box, I was reminded of what Mumma thought first time she ever saw me naked…this thing was HUGE. But, pot-bellies aside…it was so big, Indy informed us he was moving out of home and into the cardboard box it came in…because he needed the extra room!
But when I had it all setup and ready to go, the iron itself is quite small and light, but it’s the huge water tank it’s attached to that makes up the bulk of the unit. It kind of resembles a space helmet like the one that Ed Harris wears filled with liquid oxygen in The Abyss. It’s more like an aquarium than a water tank. I’m not saying it’s big, but Indy did keep looking for Nemo.
I really do ‘loves me some technology’. Which is probably why our house glows after dark and our pyjamas resemble radiation suits. So, the space-agey look appeals greatly to me but…the revolutionary OptimalTemp technology, scares the bajeezuz out of my OCD. See, the thing about this steam iron is…it has NO SETTINGS.
Whaaadup, yo? No you di-int? Yeah…I did. Word up, true dat fool. Read my text, N-O-N-E. What this means is you can flit between any ironable fabrics without the need to adjust any settings or the risk of burning garments. Talk about a leap of faith, and my OCD heart was pounding every time I switched between shirts, but they’re right. No casualties 😉
When you first fire it up, it has a cool blue light that pulsates down the front of it followed by an “Ooooh-ahh” sound…(wait, that was me). And once the iron is ready, the light stops pulsating and stays on. It doesn’t take long either. By the time I had my shirt setup on the board it was already set to go. This is where my palpitations began. I’m going in…
The first thing my OCD and army-brat iron training fought with, was the idea of leaving the iron face down on the board while repositioning my shirt. Because of the OptimalTemp Technology and the SteamGlide soleplate, you can actually leave it face down without burning the ironing board. My natural instinct was to place the iron upright on the board when not in use, but the location of the cord makes it impossible to do that. You have no choice but to place it face down. It took me about two shirts to shake that habit (and two hrs for my OCD to be coaxed off the ledge).
There’s three ways to use the Philips PerfectCare Aqua. No steam, steam trigger or constant steam. I found it was easier to manoeuvre on constant steam because you didn’t have to keep your finger on the trigger underneath. But I experienced varying degrees of success in getting it to work. Either I can’t shoot for sh*t or I had a faulty trigger but I was about four shirts into it before the constant function responded as required. But when it did, it was a breeze to use.
I did experience a lot of water leakages on my clothes, which was a hinderance. Troubleshooting notes suggest it’s because of condensation underneath the ironing board cover and that putting a layer of felt underneath it can help. But as the only felt I had was the kind I do after something has been touched, I had to push on. Turning the steam off seemed to help.
It was amazingly easy to glide over different fabrics and no need to press hard to get stubborn creases out. And oh my gawd…it lurves polyester. Eats it up with a spoon! Reckon I finished that shirt quicker than a Formula One pit crew change. Zip-zip-zap…done!
Summary: Once my OCD relaxed and just ‘went with it’ everything was cool. It is the smoothest and easiest steam iron I’ve ever used, and with the right ironing board, it may well be the quickest, too. Love the lightweight iron and soleplate, but that tank is massive. You need a bench or strong ironing board to keep it on, possibly even the floor? If you have heaps of ironing to do then this one’s for you. If you only have a couple items you’ll waste a lot of water filling that tank for just a couple garments.
Recommend: Hells to the yeah!
Seen my goggles? Indy and I might do a couple laps of the tank before we put it away?
For more info on the Philips PerfectCare Aqua, check it out here.
The Philips PerfectCare Aqua has been tested and approved by independent textile experts, including Woolmark.