Best air purifiers to help you stay healthy

Lindsay Tigar , CNN Underscored
Updated Thu August 29, 2019

Story highlights

  • Air purifiers remove airborne particles — think dust, bacteria or pollen — and keep the airflow active.
  • Shop purifiers from Oransi, Blueair, Dyson, Coway, Alen and Honeywell that help reduce allergies.

If you keep waking up with a scratchy throat or nose, or find yourself sneezing for no apparent reason, the solution could be an air purifier. This at-home device can be a game-changer in the quality of the air that circulates from your bedroom to your kitchen and beyond.

As the name suggests, air purifiers remove airborne particles — think dust, bacteria or pollen — and keep the airflow active, which cuts down on symptoms like itchy eyes or that dry throat. Keeping the air from becoming stale can help those who struggle with allergies or asthma to breathe more easily.

Air purifiers feature filters that must be replaced regularly, based on manufacturer recommendations, to ensure you're receiving the full benefit. Though they have a place in any home, air purifiers are most often used for infants and the elderly, groups that are more susceptible to harmful allergens and other pollutants. And while they may be on the pricier end -- many solid options will run you a few hundred bucks -- we think the investment is well worth it when you consider the potential health benefits.

If you've considered trying one, we've got a list of well-rated options in a variety of sizes and price ranges.

Note: The prices below reflect the retailer's listed price at the time of publication.

Best air purifier for large homes: Oransi EJ120 Air Purifier ($899; amazon.com)

With a 72% 5-star rating on Amazon, and 4.9 on its main website, this model from Oransi is on the higher end of air purifiers, but it could be worth it. It's best for those with large spaces to filter, since it can cleanse up to 1,500 square feet. It's made in the US with a German motor that's on the quieter side, so it won't disrupt sensitive sleepers as it does its magic. Another selling point of this model is how it contains tough pet dander, a plus that many owners of dogs, cats and even parrots have raved about in reviews. The only downside in our book, other than the price tag, is the size and the style. While it's minimalist, if you're seeking a modern, trendy look that blends in, it might not be your best fit.

Runner up: GermGuardian Full Room

For a more budget-friendly option, consider this pick from GermGuardian. It's ideal for large rooms, and captures dust and allergens like pet dander and pollen. With a high Amazon rating — and Prime as an option! — it's a no-brainer.

Best air purifier for nurseries: Blueair Blue Pure 211+ ($249.35; amazon.com)

Becoming a new parent is stressful enough on its own — changing diapers, struggling with little sleep, worrying about every sniffle — so thinking about the air that your baby breathes shouldn't be a consideration. For a small space up to 540 square feet, this model from Blueair fits the bill. It filters 99% of airborne particles, and features a variety of pre-filters so you can match the nursery decor. Plenty of reviewers are fans of the subtle sounds that emanate from the purifier, and the fact that it's more user-intuitive than a lot of products, with a one-touch control. It's also more affordable than other tower options.

Runner up: Pure Enrichment PureZone

This soft white color is ideal for baby's first room — and the price tag is ideal for the new parents' wallet. It eliminates dust, allowing you to rest easy, knowing Baby is sleeping soundly -- or at least crying in a clean room.

Best air purifier for apartments: Dyson Pure Hot + Cool Link Purifier ($599.99; dyson.com)

Small-space living is a norm these days. But apartment living comes with some compromises, one of which might be in the air purifier you choose. What we like about this heating and cooling purifier from Dyson is that it serves several purposes. It keeps you toasty during the winter and cool in the hottest months of the year -- and did we mention it does all this while purifying the air? For those who love all things home-connected, the optional Dyson Link app or Amazon Alexa compatibility allows you to control your device from wherever you are. The style might not be for everyone, but for those in apartments, the size will be just right.

Runner up: Levoit Air

Not only short on space, but short on money, too? Consider this cost-effective and still reliable air purifier from Levoit. Its three-stage filtration system removes most dust and odors and it runs quietly.

Best air purifier for budget-minded households: Coway AP-1512HH Mighty Air Purifier ($161.95; amazon.com)

At less than $170, this find from Coway falls into the "best bang for your buck" category — and the 800 Amazon reviews averaging a 4.3-star rating agree. Since replacing the filter of an air purifier is important, many reviewers appreciate the inexpensive cost of the Coway options. Available in white or black, this will complement your home aesthetic and get to air cleaning, stat.

Runner up: Hamilton Beach TrueAir

Small enough to sit on your desk or kitchen counter, this pick may not be able to filter your whole home, but for a small region, it's ideal. Its filter can be vacuumed clean, so you don't have to buy replacement filters — and it costs only $60. Win-win!

Best air purifier for offices: Alen BreatheSmart 75i Air Purifier ($788; amazon.com)

If you want to add clean air to the benefits you offer employees, consider this pick from Alen. While it's more expensive, this air purifier features a high-capacity HEPA filter, considered one of the most advanced in the industry, and is available in a slew of colors, from espresso to gold champagne and beyond. Why is it great for an office? It can filter through 1,300 square feet, and the variety of shades helps to maintain your decor and professionalism. Many reviewers rave about the look as well as the effectiveness, making it a win-win for employees, managers, clients and anyone else who walks through your door.

Runner Up: Honeywell True

If you aren't quite at the point where you're hiring employees, your office probably doesn't have a huge square footage. If it's under 500, this budget-friendly pick is just about perfect for startups. It's still effective, and you won't have to go far into your savings to give your work area a clean-air upgrade.