Amazon Review by D.
361 people found the following review helpful
Works just as well... or better... with plain water
UPDATE: My original review title was "A time-saver, but not without its flaws"
My UPDATED discoveries:
Most importantly, My clean clothes come out as good or even better if I fill a used (empty) pod with PLAIN WARM WATER. I simply use a child’s liquid medicine syringe to refill an empty pod with plain water through the hole made by the Swash. I don’t do this to save money (the pods are only 60 cents each) but because I didn’t love the idea of spraying clean clothes with heavily scented “stuff” (I have no idea what’s in the pods) especially since I use it to de-wrinkle clean clothing. Happily, plain water works just as well but doesn’t leave them smelling and feeling like they’ve been sprayed with something. I can only conclude that there isn’t really any de-wrinkling magic in the pods and it’s the steamy hot air and the clips that hold the fabric taut that do the trick.
I also discovered that it works even better if the item is damp when you place it in the swash and set it to the 15 minute cycle. For example, I will run a hand wash cycle in my washing machine with delicate items like dress shirts, blouses, etc. I can remove items from the washer and place them in the swash one by one while still damp and they come out even better than allowing them to hang-dry first.
My ORIGINAL review (which still pretty much stands… I’ve added some fabric types at the end):
Overall, I’d recommend the Swash as a time saver to replace steaming or ironing. I am useless with the iron and while I get good results with a Shark Press & Refresh steamer, I find steaming my shirts time consuming and frustrating and the Swash has made my life a little easier. The Swash is marketed as a replacement for actually cleaning a garment, but there are very few types of clothes that I could see doing this with–suits and lightly worn dry-clean-only garments. Overall the idea of Swashing a dirty shirt and wearing it again is unappealing and even a little gross.
To preserve the quality of my dress shirts, I never dry clean them or tumble dry them, both of which can make an expensive shirt look pretty worn in short order. I wash them in the hand wash cycle of my Maytag Bravos HE washer with Tide Pods and then hang them to dry and steam or iron them. The Swash has replaced the steam/iron step and is largely successful in taking a shirt that’s unwearable due to wrinkles and making it look nearly as good as professional pressing. While that’s not as good as I can do with the Shark steamer, it’s good enough and far more convenient. However, I do wonder what the long-term wear and tear is on the garment as it is being blown dry in the Swash and I’m not sure whether the chemicals in the Swash pods lengthen or lessen the life of the shirts.
To be sure, the Swash is based on the razor/razor blade model with the goal of selling Swash Pods, made by Tide. For the size and complexity, it’s being sold relatively inexpensively. I would have really liked to have an option to use plain water, but given the business model, the Swash refuses to work without a Swash Pod inserted. The pods are about 60 cents each and you can use one pod per garment. (They say that you can hang two with two hangers, but it’s virtually impossible to do so.) The issue for me isn’t really the cost, it’s the fact that I don’t really need or want more chemicals and perfumes sprayed on my already clean clothes. I just want them pressed, which probably could be done with plain water or at least an unscented pod.
Overall I’m happy with what it does for my narrow application as it saves me a LOT of time. But it’s not without its flaws. See the pros and cons for these:
- Makes clean wrinkly shirts look close to freshly pressed. Works on only some shirts, though.
- Saves time and effort.
- Unlike steaming, the garments come out completely dry and can be worn right away. Steamed shirts must hang out several hours or they will wrinkle as soon as you put them on.
Things that could be improved:
- It’s big and requires access from every angle. You must be able to access both sides of the pull-out drawer to hang the garment properly, as you have to clip the front and back of the garment in place tightly or it will not remove the wrinkles. And you must be able to access the back of the unit to pull the waste reservoir for when it needs emptying. So can’t be slid back between your washer and dryer or your dresser and the wall and it can’t be placed flat against a wall unless you plan to pull it out when you need to actually use it. I would also add that it’s designed to sit on the floor but you need to attach 6 clips to your shirt and 4 of them are only inches from bottom, so you need to crouch or sit on the floor on both sides of the drawer to hang a shirt properly, which is really awkward.
- The clip system is smart, but it’s missing two clips. There are 4 clips on the bottom–center front, center back, and left and right shirt bottom corner. However, you really need 6 on the bottom, two additional clips to clip the front and back of the shirt bottom corners independently just like the center. The front and back of a shirt aren’t typically the same length so unless you bunch up the back of the shirt, the clips won’t hold the front tight. If it’s not held tight, the wrinkles don’t come out. Getting the bottom corner clips properly attached is the most time consuming element of using the swash.
- The hanger system is poorly designed. My shirt, hanger and all, often falls off when I’m threading the sleeves through the “sleeve wraps.” And even though they say you can put two garments into the swash on two separate hangers, it’s virtually impossible to do so without them both continuously falling off as you try to clip in the sleeves, bottom, etc.
- There are no unscented pods. I know that Swash is marketed for people who want to re-wear their clothes without washing or dry cleaning them. But let’s face it, the Swash pods are not getting the garment clean. And for people who want to use the Swash on clean clothes to get the wrinkles out, an unscented pod would be preferable. The scent left of the garment is way too strong, in my opinion.
- The first Swash we received was broken. Packing to re-ship this item would be a lot of work. Thankfully I purchased from a local store and I was able to return it without repacking, and have a new one shipped. From looking at other reviews, it’s not uncommon for the product to be damaged during shipping.
Whether the Swash actually works for your garment depends on fabric. Here’s a brief rundown of the brands of shirts I’ve found the Swash was successful with, and which it failed on. Almost all of these brand shirts are 100% cotton, so I could only speculate as to why some of them are easier to get wrinkles out of than others. In general, shirts that are easy to steam work, shirts that are challenging to steam or require an iron don’t. Most of these brands are available at Nordstrom:
Shirts it worked on:
- Stone Rose
- Ben Sherman
- Jack Spade
- Isaac Mizrahi
- Nordstrom Men’s Shop
Shirts it left wrinkled:
- Jared Lang
- Anthony Morato
- My wife’s rayon blouse