On one hand, we absolutely need to blast our heater in the winter, especially when the temperature starts dropping into the single digits. On the other, cranking up the heat can seriously dry out our skin, eyes and nasal passages.
We’re not about to settle for feeling dried out in our own homes, and neither should you – when a simple humidifier can allow you to feel warm and snuggly, without your skin suffering the consequences.
What exactly does a humidifier do? At the bare minimum, these devices emit water vapor or steam into your rooms to increase the moisture in the air. This helps soothe dry and cracked skin and makes the air easier to breathe (which can be a real godsend if you’re battling a winter cold, flu or sinus infection).
Humidifier options diffuse water vapor through cool mist or warm mist. There are pros and cons to each. Cool mist humidifiers typically use less electricity and, since they don’t boil water, are usually safer to use in homes. Warm mist humidifiers, however, can remove mold and bacteria from the water through the boiling process. But regardless of design, all humidifiers can do the trick.
While emitting water vapor into the air is the bare minimum, many also double as oil diffusers, and some are even designed with various lighting settings, to set the mood or act as a night light. These added perks are especially beneficial if you’re looking to integrate your humidifier as part of your designed living or bedroom space, rather than just throwing it in the back of your closet when you’re not using it.
When properly cared for, a humidifier can help your skin feel hydrated and your eyes and sinuses feel less irritated. However, it’s important to clean your humidifier, as the moist conditions allow bacteria and mold to form, and those could be spread around your house along with the moisture.
Humidifiers come in a variety of prices, so to help you find one that best suits your needs and budget, we’ve come up with a list of options that range from budget-friendly to premium, and from basic humidifiers to ones that have all the bells and whistles.
VicTsing Cool Mist Humidifier ($29.99; amazon.com)
This wood-grained humidifier can easily emit essential oil aromas around your home for a truly luxurious experience.
Urpower Essential Oil Diffuser and Cool Mist Humidifier ($16.99; amazon.com)
This mini humidifier is ideal for dorm rooms and other small spaces.
Asakuki Essential Oil Diffuser and Humidifier ($26.99; amazon.com)
Over 4,800 Amazon customers have given this humidifier (rated an impressive 4.5 stars) their stamp of approval.
Pure Enrichment Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier ($39.99; amazon.com)
This one and a half liter humidifier can make large spaces feel more comfortable for up to 16 hours. It also automatically shuts off when the water level is low, so you can safely set it and forget it.
Humidifier Factory ($50; store.moma.org)
We love the contemporary design on this humidifier, which you simply fill with water and place on top of your radiator.
Crane USA Humidifier ($37.49; amazon.com)
Ideal for baby rooms and offices alike, this one gallon humidifier emits cool mist into your space, allowing you to breath easier.
Vicks Warm Mist Humidifier ($34.19; amazon.com)
With one full tank of water, this powerful humidifier can release cool air into your living and bedroom spaces for 24 hours.
Zeigga Lab Oil Diffuser and Humidifier ($41.59; amazon.com)
Finally, a humidifier and oil diffuser you won’t want to hide in the back of your closet.
Dyson AM10 Humidifier ($399.99; amazon.com)
Think of this as the Rolls Royce of humidifiers. The Dyson AM10 kills 99.9% of bacteria, is certified asthma and allergy friendly, ad can intelligently detect the amount of moisture in the air to create an ideal living environment without over-humidification.
SPT Ultrasonic Aroma Bamboo Diffuser and Humidifier ($54.99; overstock.com)
This device can change colors to set the mood in your living space.
Teo Aroma Essential Oil Diffuser and Humidifier ($80; amazon.com)
Add a few drops of essential oils and this device can do double duty: act as a powerful humidifier that can help you stay healthy in the winter, as well as a potent oil diffuser.
Note: The prices above reflect the retailers’ listed prices at the time of publication.