Best Steriliser 2020
Tommee Tippee Super-Steam Advanced Electric Steriliser Review
Tommee Tippee have put a great deal of thought into the redesign of their bestselling electric steam steriliser and it really shows. It’s straightforward to use and comes with a whole host of useful features, especially for tired new parents. The only less-good news is the increased price – but at £69.99, it’s still less expensive than most of the other electric steam sterilisers we tested.
Good for parents who
- Use Tommee Tippee bottles and other baby products
- Get through up to six baby bottles a day
- Want an electric steam steriliser but don’t have a lot of kitchen workspace available
- Fairly compact footprint
- Sturdy, safe materials and design
- Inexpensive to run
- Fairly large capacity
- Simple interface to use with rapid sterilisation cycle
- Not the most budget-friendly electric steriliser we tested and a more expensive initial outlay than microwave or travel versions
- Doesn’t fit extra-tall bottles, like Dr Brown’s
- Doesn’t have any extra features – just a simple sterilisation cycle
- Materials: BPA-free plastics and metal electrical components
- Included: Steriliser and teat tongs
- Available from a wide range of retailers, including supermarkets and Amazon
- Colours: White and black
- RRP: £69.99 – steriliser sets also available to buy
Tommee Tippee worked great for all three of my children.
What’s the Tommee Tippee Electric Steriliser like to purchase and assemble?
The extra care is evident right from the beginning – an in-depth instruction manual includes pictures to help you through assembly and use, as well as descaling advice for different water compositions and instructions for safe disposal and recycling once you’re done with the product.
Should you misplace the instructions, you can download them from Tommee Tippee’s website. There are also plenty of instructional videos and a customer helpline if you get stuck. Tommee Tippee offer a one-year warranty in case anything goes wrong.
The Super-Steam comes in four parts – base, lower tray, upper tray and lid – which take less than a minute to put together. One five-minute pre-cycle is required before the steriliser can be used, but it won’t be long before you’re ready to go.
Is the Tommee Tippee Super-Steam safe?
The website states that all plastics used for the Super-Steam are BPA-free, as you’d hope, and the frosted plastic lid certainly feels sturdy in the hand. The steriliser also has the 'CE' mark, which means it complies with all European legislation on safety, health and the environment.
The lid fits over two-thirds of the steriliser so, even though it doesn’t have a locking mechanism, it would be very hard to knock off accidentally – and while the outside gets hot in use, it’s not so hot it would burn.
Our tester, Maisie, noted that this electric steam steriliser would be safe to have in a kitchen with young children around as they’d be unlikely to burn themselves even if they touched the unit accidentally. After the cycle, Tommee Tippee recommend waiting five minutes before opening the steriliser. There are handles at the top of the lid for you to take it off the trays safely after the cycle.
The wire to the plug is short, which does limit where the unit can be placed, but it also means that there are no trailing wires to trip over or for small fingers to pull on.
The body of the steriliser is spacious enough for six bottles of most brands, which is more than competitors like the Nuby Natural Touch. It doesn’t, however, fit Dr Brown’s bottles which are taller than average.
Once filled, contents are well-positioned. Because of this, our tester felt that they sterilised thoroughly during testing.
What’s it like in day-to-day use?
As well as its recommended six bottles, there’s also plenty of room around on the two tiers for breast pump parts, dummies and even small toys. If you’re using Tommee Tippee branded bottles too, each bottle has the correct water measure for the steriliser marked on it, which our tester found especially helpful at night or in a hurry.
Once you’ve put the correct amount of water in the base, it’s simply a matter of putting on the lid and pressing the ‘play’ button – it could easily be done at night or one-handed with a baby on the hip. The cycle takes only five minutes – shorter than any other electric steriliser we tested, such as the Dr Brown's Deluxe Bottle Steriliser, and plenty of microwave ones too.
There’s a ‘stop’ button too, in case you need to stop the steriliser mid-cycle (though the instructions remind you that, if so, the contents aren’t properly sterilised). It shouldn’t be necessary to stop it normally, however, as once the cycle has run the steriliser will click off automatically.
It doesn’t make any beeps when it starts or stops and isn’t noisy when in use – great for keeping sleeping babies undisturbed.
If you don’t remove the lid after the cycle has finished, the contents will remain sterile for 24 hours, which is useful if you don’t need to feed again immediately.
The unit measures 36.2 × 47.4 × 28.6cm – it’s shaped like a lozenge so can be pushed unobtrusively against the wall, though it would be tricky to store if you’re short on cupboard space or to transport to a grandparent’s house.
I used the Tommee Tippee Super-Steam and was always happy with the results.
Is the Tommee Tippee Super-Steam Electric Steriliser easy to keep clean?
The unit doesn’t seem to attract much dirt or dust and can easily be wiped down if it gets splashed.
Our tester did note that the instructions advise descaling the steriliser once every 14 days, which she felt was more often than strictly required – though the hardness of your water and the limescale build-up on the heating plate during use will be the best guide there.
Maisie didn’t descale herself during the test, but for more information about how and when to descale, see our best sterilisers page.
How does it look?
The Tommee Tippee Super-Steam has a simple design that looks unobtrusive and of good quality on the kitchen counter. The simplicity of the two buttons adds to the ‘clean’ aesthetic, and the frosted plastic means the mess of bottles and parts is hidden from view inside.
We tested the white unit, but it also, quite unusually, comes in a sleek black.
Finally, is it good value for money?
The Super-Steam retails at £69.99, though it’s widely available in supermarkets and often discounted there. That’s not a casual purchase, obviously, but a little less than average for an electric steam model – cheaper than the Dr Brown’s Deluxe and the MAM 6-in-1 Electric Steriliser and Express Bottle Warmer, for example, which we also tested.
It’s straightforward and capacious enough that our tester felt it was genuinely useful, and that she would gladly buy it again if it broke.
Tommee Tippee include it in various bundles and starter sets (with bottles, formula prep machines and bottle warmers), which can be found on their website. You may find these good value if you intended to buy and use each of those items separately, but otherwise they’re probably not worth it. On its own, though, it comes with a pair of tongs and a Tommee Tippee dummy.
Happily, using the Super-Steam once a day at current electricity prices should set you back only 24p a month, so it’s not going to gobble up energy (cheaper than, say, a microwave).
Altogether, the Tommee Tippee Super-Steam is a reliable, thoughtfully-designed steriliser that’s widely available, well-supported and should do its job consistently over time – a lifesaver for an overloaded new parent and a worthy winner of this year’s Mumsnet Best Steriliser 2020 award.
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For more information about what to look for when buying a steriliser, check out our buyer's guide.
All prices correct at time of publication
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