The 8 Best Mist Humidifiers of 2021

Eco-friendly options for bringing moisture to your home during dry seasons

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The Rundown
Best Energy Smart Humidifier:
Vornado Evaporative Humidifier at Walmart
If you want humidity for up to 750 square feet, this Vornado brings the mist.
Best Allergy-Friendly:
Dyson AM10 at Walmart
Looking for quiet, hygienic humidification? Dyson offers all three with this model.
Ensure your Airbnb or hotel room doesn't dry you out with this cool mist humidifier.
From piglets to hippos, this humidifier will become your kid's new friend.
Best Air Washer Plus Essential Oil Diffuser:
Boneco Air Washer Humidifier & Purifier at Walmart
Add your favorite pure essential oil and the Boneco W200 will help you get your chill on.
Best for Large Rooms:
Alen FLEX Air Purifier at Walmart
Don’t let its sleek design fool you, this machine can clean 700 square feet every 30 minutes.
If you're looking for a powerful air filter and a humidifier in once unit, consider this model from Sharp.
Best Warm or Cool Mist Humidifier:
TaoTronics 6L Warm and Cool Mist Humidifier at Walmart
The TaoTronics 046 is the perfect fit for those who want both a warm or cool mist option.

Excessively dry air in our homes can lead to a number of problems. It’s bad for the structure of your home as well as for furniture and carpets. Dry air can also aggravate allergies, make you more susceptible to respiratory viruses like colds and flus, and exacerbate itchy skin conditions like eczema. According to the Mayo Clinic, cool mist even may help ease symptoms of a cold, such as coughing and congestion, but more research is needed.

Mist humidifiers are helpful for raising home humidity levels, but that moisture comes at a cost. Operating humidifiers increases your electric bill and your overall carbon footprint, due to the emissions associated any new electronic. There are a few approaches to increasing the humidity in your home without a machine, like adding houseplants and using shallow dishes of water (more tips on that below).

If you tried to naturally humidify your home yet still need more moisture, you can invest in an energy-smart machine. Look for models that include air purifying filters, automatic shutoffs, and mold resistance to bacteria that may build up inside the machine. Follow Goldilocks' “just right” rule and match the model you buy with the room size, to make it easier to maintain the humidity level that you want.

You can also consider portability, which will allow you to take one machine with you into different rooms rather than having multiple machines running simultaneously. Although Energy Star doesn’t rate humidifiers, some are available on the market. You can contact the manufacturer directly to find out about the energy-efficiency specs of the product.

We've made it even easier by identifying some of the best energy efficient humidifiers.

Best Energy Smart Humidifier: Vornado EVDC300 Energy Smart Evaporative Humidifier

Vornado EVDC300 Energy Smart 750 Sq. Ft. Room Evaporative Humidifier

Driven by an Energy Smart DC motor, the Vornado EVDC300 uses 90 percent less energy than comparable models. It’s one-gallon tank provides up to three gallons of cool mist output every 24 hours.

Its multi-speed fan settings are paired with auto-humidity control, guaranteeing 40 to 60 percent air saturation, or you can opt for continuous output. Selecting Energy Smart Mode will automatically cycle the motor to deliver precise humidification while using as little as one watt of electricity. A low-water indicator light shows when it’s time to refill, but a handy auto shutoff feature ensures that you don’t burn excess energy.

Cool vs. Warm Mist

There are both cool and warm mist (aka steam vaporizers) humidifier options. Warm mist models use a heating element to boil water and make steam, so keep these out of reach of children or pets. This variety is better for reducing bacteria and germs, but avoid them if you have a cold because they can swell nasal passages, making it harder for you to breathe.

Cool mist humidifiers are more widely used. They come with a fan that evaporates water into the air. This can add a chill to the air, so they may be a great option if you live in a warmer, drier environment.

Best Allergy-Friendly: Dyson AM10 Humidifier

Looking for quiet, hygienic humidification? Dyson brings all three with their AM10 model. Thanks to its “ultraviolet cleanse” technology that kills 99.9 percent of bacteria before hydrating your home, it’s certified asthma and allergy-friendly by the Asthma Allergy Foundation of America. It was awarded the Quiet Mark accreditation by the Noise Abatement Society, so running it won’t keep you up at night.

Equipped with “Intelligent Climate Control,” this humidifier measures air temperature and moisture level to create and maintain the your desired humidity setting. Its high-velocity fans can even help cool you down on arid, summer days. It comes with a remote controller. The main drawback of this multifunctional humidifier is that it's considerably more expensive than most humidifiers.

Best Travel Humidifier: Hunter QLS03-RD Ultrasonic Personal Air Humidifier

Hunter Ultrasonic Personal Air Humidifier

This portable cool-mist model is handy for travelers who want to ensure that their Airbnb or hotel room doesn't dry them out while they’re away from home. It’s small and low on features—with a water bottle serving as its tank and a simple auto shutoff when the water runs out.

This personal-sized product also earned an excellent rating from Consumer Reports for output—meaning it met its claim of humidifying a room of up to 25 square feet. Whether you’re working in an office cubicle or from home, the Hunter QLS-03 can help you stay comfortable and focused on that to-do list.

Best for Kids: Crane Adorables Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier

Crane Adorable Humidifier

Frogs, monkeys, hippos, oh my! These Crane critter-shaped humidifiers are the perfect humidity-creating companions for a child’s room. They’re small in size, so they’re space-saving and easy to fill under most bathroom sink faucets.

These energy-efficient, filter-free models are also low waste and easy to clean. Optional demineralization filters (HS-1932) are available for cleaning the unit and are great for those with hard water. They’re also made with anti-microbial materials that reduce mold and bacteria growth up to 99.6 percent. The 360-degree adjustable lid makes it easy to direct the mist where you want it in rooms up to 500 square feet. They’re so cool that your favorite little one is going to want two!

Best Air Washer Plus Essential Oil Diffuser: Boneco Air Washer W200 Humidifier & Purifier

 BONECO - Air Washer W200 Humidifier & Purifier

Using an evaporator mat, the Boneco W200 washes and humidifies the air, and is designed for rooms up to 540 square feet. The water naturally filters odors, dust, and dander from the air before its filtered and humidified into the air. Air washers are filter-free and low waste options. Most of the parts are safe to put in the dishwasher or washing machine, which makes for easy cleaning.

You can also add in two or three drops of your favorite pure essential oil to the fragrance container and the Boneco W200 will help you get your chill on. It has four fan speeds that adjust depending on the room’s air quality. It runs for up to ten hours and has an auto-shutoff feature, helping ensure low energy consumption.

Best for Large Rooms: Alen FLEX Air Purifier

Alen FLEX Air Purifier

The Alen Flex Air Purifier is equipped with an activated carbon Fresh Filter and a medical-grade HEPA filter to suck up dust, mold, and pet odors. It works well on cigarette smoke, and the HEPA filter lasts three to five months longer than standard filters–making it a lower-waste option.

Don’t let its sleek design fool you, it can clean 700 square feet every 30 minutes. That means it’s a great addition to living rooms, kitchens, and basements. It also boasts low energy consumption. The manufacturer claims that using the lowest setting costs less than 50 cents a month in electricity.

Best Dual-Purpose: Sharp Triple Action Plasmacluster Air Purifier with Humidifying Function

Sharp Triple Action Plasmacluster Air Purifier with Humidifying Function

This Sharp product uses positive and negative ion technology to eliminate microscopic pollutants in a room up to 254 square feet. Enhanced with a triple-filtration system including a washable pre-filter, an activated carbon deodorizing filter, and a TRUE HEPA filter that rids the air of mold, pollen, pet dander, and other irritants.

Its Ion Air Purifier is California Air Resources Board certified. It also produces five times less ozone than the standards set by the Federal Drug Administration and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Want some moisture in that super clean air? Simply turn on the humidify option.

Best Warm or Cool Mist Humidifier: TaoTronics 6L Warm and Cool Mist Humidifier For Home

 TaoTronics Humidifiers for Bedroom

The TaoTronics 046 is the perfect fit for those who want both a warm or cool mist option.The 6 liter/1.58 gallon water tank makes this machine compatible with large rooms and prevents constant refilling. Thanks to its low-noise operation, you can keep your sinuses and skin hydrated while you sleep.

Drop in some essential oils and infuse the room with your favorite calming fragrance. You can customize the humidity settings of this top-fill ultrasonic humidifier with the touch of a remote button, so you don't have to get out of bed to turn it on or make adjustments.

Final Verdict

If you are looking for the best humidifier to take on the road, choose the Hunter QLS-03. It’s super portable and uses your own water bottle. Need an air purifying humidifier for a large room? Check out the Alen FLEX Air Purifier.

Good to Know

Before plugging in, try these eco-friendly, DIY methods for increasing the humidity without a new device: 

·  Use a rack to dry your laundry indoors to raise humidity levels and make your clothes last longer.
·  Housemates permitting, shower with the bathroom door open and allow the steam to escape into the rest of the space.
·  Fill a spray bottle with warm water and mist the air every hour.

·  Utilize houseplants to take advantage of the natural process of transpiration—when pores of leaves open and release water—to moisten and purify your home’s air at the same time.

·  Place bowls of water near radiators or a stove, so when the container heats up the water evaporates into the air.

·  Bundle up under a cozy blanket or grab a sweater. Your home furnace or boiler is a major cause of dry air. Turning down the thermostat saves you money and moisture. On the flip side, some air conditioning systems also lead to dry air, so if you're dealing with hot dry temperatures, see if minimizing the AC helps.

·  Boost energy efficiency by using weather stripping to seal cracks around doors or windows that sneak moisture—and warmth—from your home.

Why Trust Treehugger?

Heidi Wachter lives in a northern climate. Her mist humidifier, along with her vintage wool blanket and socks, are her best friends during the long, cold winter. A humidifier helps keep dry eyes, eczema, and nasal issues at bay until summer humidity arrives.

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