Using a humidifier can be a great way to bring relief to allergies. Much like a lotion does to human skin, a humidifier moisturizes the air, adding humidity to the otherwise dry air.
We can feel humidity on our skin and when we breathe. Too much humidity and we feel stuffy, too little and we feel parched. Given the right circumstance, humidifiers are the perfect way to soothe allergies in both babies and adults.
I’ll admit that learning I had allergies was a big disappointment. My immune system had failed me and allergies were controlling my life. You might feel the same way.
But the more I learned about allergies the more I realized I wasn’t alone. Allergies are on the rise in the U.S. and there are many people just like me who are searching for relief.
Humidifiers can help babies, children, and adults. In this article, I’ll share my experience using a humidifier and the best humidifiers for allergies.
Best Humidifier For Allergies - Babies and Adults
|Rank||Humidifier Brand||Warm or Cool Mist||Price|
|1||Levoit Ultrasonic||Warm + Cool||$$|
|2||Everlasting Comfort Ultrasonic||Cool||$$|
|4||Pure Enrichment Ultrasonic||Cool||$$|
|5||URPower||Cool + Essential Oil Diffuser||$|
Growing Up Using A Humidifier
I grew up in an area of the U.S. with hot dry summers and cold dry winters. The Western U.S. is known for its arid weather and it was a great area of the country to be outside playing sports, hiking, and exploring.
Due to the extreme temperatures in summer and winter, I wasn’t always outside. Sometimes it was healthier to stay inside with the heater and air conditioning.
I knew that it had to do with the air. Was something in the air conditioner? Was the heater not working properly? Did the filter need to be replaced (check out the best allergy filters for HVACs)?
Looking back, much of the problem was a simple problem; DRY AIR!
In my teenage years, I began to make use of a humidifier. This was the 1990’s so the technology was limited but the humidifier would sit in my room and run at night. It added much-needed moisture and I stopped waking up with a sore throat and dehydrated skin.
As an adult, I still use a humidifier. In my last position I worked in the desert and a humidifier was essential, especially if the HVAC was running. But you don’t have to live in the desert to yield the benefits of a humidifier.
Seasons When You Need a Humidifier For Allergies
Every area of the country experiences hot weather and cold weather. While spring and autumn seasons are considered to have perfect humidity levels (between 30-50%), it’s not the case for summer and winter.
As a result, we deal with dry indoor air in winter and summer (not as much in the summer for the East and South). Most people aren’t bothered by dry air but for the 25% of Americans with allergies and asthma, dry air can cause our symptoms to increase. Let’s examine what happens to air in winter and summer.
During winter, the doors and windows are usually shut. They are kept shut for weeks if not months at a time and we rely on the heater to warm our house.
The air is continually recycled through the HVAC and returned to the air and because it is forced air, it picks up dust from the house and blows it around.
It’s not only the dry air that affects us but what’s in the air too. For people with dust mite, pet, and pollen allergies it’s extremely important to use an allergy-grade filter for your HVAC (I mentioned earlier with a link to the article). It’s also wise to invest in a HEPA air purifier for the bedroom which will capture the smallest dust and cleans the air.
Summer temperatures are generally a little more hospitable. While some days will get too hot and you’ll need to use the AC, there will be many days that are perfect for opening the doors and windows.
Because there are high humidity levels in much of the U.S., opening the windows may be all you need (but sometimes too much).
In the Western U.S., a humidifier is a welcome addition to a house to add moisture to the dry heat. I’ve used my humidifier in the winter in summer seasons when my allergy symptoms are at their worst.
Different Types Of Humidifiers For Allergies
When looking at the various makes and models of humidifiers you’ll see there are catchy marketing terms used to describe the product. The main thing you’ll want to note is whether it’s cool mist or warm mist (steam). Let’s look at the benefits of both.
Cool mist humidifiers are great for children because you don’t have to worry about them getting burned with hot steam. A cool mist humidifier can use an “impeller” which is a spinning device to get water airborne.
It can also be “ultrasonic” which uses vibrations to disperse water into a room
Warm mist humidifiers add an element to the process: heat. Warm mist humidifiers are quiet and can slightly warm up a room with warm steam. They are great for the winter season and use a little more electricity because they heat the water.
All modern humidifiers are relatively quiet and inexpensive. They last a number of years and are primarily made for bedrooms, offices, and other small areas.
5 Best Humidifiers For Allergies (Babies and Adults)
#1 Levoit Warm + Cool Ultrasonic Humidifier
If you’ve read my other review you know I like the Levoit company (they make great air purifiers too). This is my number 1 humidifier for allergies in babies and adults because it can be used with cool mist or warm steam.
Levoit also includes a digital display that shows relative humidity so you can monitor the air in your room. The digital display includes a remote control which is handy as well so it can be on a desk across the room and turned on and off from the bed.
The water capacity is large too. This means less frequent changing of water.
Cool and warm mist
Ultrasonic (noiseless vibration to disperse air)
Optional place to add essential oil
Occasionally I like to add essential oils like lavender and eucalyptus oil to the humidifier. Essential oils can freshen up a room and tends to improve my sinus congestion.
The design has room for improvement because it’s square, however, it’s likely sturdy and would fit well on the ground or on a dresser. There is tons of customer feedback with great reviews overall. People are using the Levoit humidifier primarily for the winter season.
#2 Everlasting Comfort – Cool Mist Humidifier – Ultrasonic
Most people haven’t heard of the company Everlasting Comfort but don’t let it deter you. They primarily sell on Amazon and offer a solid 2-year warranty. Customers like the support they receive from the company and there are almost 2000 reviews.
Similar to the Levoit humidifier, this one has a 6-liter tank which can last 50 hours before needing a refill.
Everlasting Comfort also provides a tray for essential oils where a fan adds it to the mist. It’s marketed for babies, children, college students and adults and great for people with allergies who suffer from rhinitis, asthma, and other respiratory symptoms.
Essential oil tray
Auto shut off
I really appreciate the warranty and also like the sleek design and black color which hides well in a dark room. Customers give it overwhelmingly positive reviews for its quietness, ease of use, and price point.
This is a well-priced option that will last many years and keep allergies at bay. Perfect for fighting those dry winters and summers.
#3 TaoTronics Cool Mist Humidifier – Ultrasonic
The TaoTronics humidifier is very similar to our last option and comes at a good price point as well. It uses an ultrasonic vibration to quietly disperse water in the air and is great for babies with allergies and adults too.
TaoTronics has an adjustable vapor setting to keep humidity and mist flow at a level you prefer. It’s also smaller than the first 2 humidifiers and holds 4 liters of water.
Sure it will need refilling more often, but it will also take up less space in a room. The humidifier is perfect for rooms around 500 square feet and works well in a child or adult room or in an office at work.
Converse to the previous humidifiers, TaoTronics doesn’t have the ability to diffuse essential oils into the air and the company advises against putting essential oils into the water.
Over 500 customers like how this humidifier works with the only negative comments coming from people who don’t like using distilled water (yes distilled water is necessary to avoid the naturally occurring minerals in water which produce a white powder when released into the air).
I like the design and the colors. It’s mostly white but has one side that is blue/clear to show the water level. Overall this is a good humidifier for smaller rooms and it comes at a fair price.
#4 Pure Enrichment MistAire Humidifier – Ultrasonic
The Pure Enrichment humidifier is another good option for increasing the amount of moisture in your room. This humidifier uses a common design and it’s effective. It’s actually the same design of humidifier I’ve had for many years.
The ultrasonic cool mist ensures a quiet delivery to your air. There’s a nightlight and automatic shut off so once it runs out of the water it will turn off automatically.
One of the big drawbacks (or positives) about this humidifier is that it only has a 1.5-liter water tank. This means you’ll have to add water but if you keep it on a low setting you can reduce the amount of water you use.
Cool mist humidifier
Auto shut off
5-liter tank (16 hours continuous)
I really like the 2-year warranty which gives me peace of mind that I’m getting a good product. I also like the almost 10,000 positive reviews that like it’s simplicity and price. I think this is the best humidifier for kids with allergies. Give it a try!
#5 URPower 2nd Version Essential Oil Diffuser and Cool Mist Humidifier
Our number 5 humidifier is marketed first as an essential oil diffuser. It’s the smallest option on the list and has a capacity of 100mL (I wouldn’t exactly call it a humidifier). The water capacity is tiny so this is a good option if you’re looking for the aromatherapy benefits of a mini-humidifier.
It does, however, use the ultrasonic technology and essential oils don’t have to be added. The URPower might be good next to cribs and other small areas that need a minimal about of humidity.
Reviews for this product are awesome with almost 30,000 people commenting on its effectiveness (mostly as an essential oil diffuser though) and the 7 color options. Make sure its what you need before buying.
Humidifiers and Allergies – Frequently Asked Questions
Why Does My Humidifier Create White Dust (Will Dust Make My Allergies Worse)
The white dust occurs when tap water is used in your humidifier. The white dust usually only appears in ultrasonic-style humidifiers and can be shocking to see.
When I first saw my humidifier emitting a white dust I thought the machine had broke or I did something wrong. This wasn’t the case.
Tap water has minerals in the water and can create a white powder that gets on counters and floors. If you experience the white dust as I did, make sure you switch to distilled water or try a humidifier that doesn’t use the ultrasonic technology.
If you have bad allergies it’s not wise to breathe the white powder that may be produced by the humidifier. If possible purchase distilled water from a grocery store which has no minerals and is relatively inexpensive.
When Should I Use My Humidifier
Humidifiers can be used for allergies all day, however, most people benefit from humidifiers while sleeping. If you wake up with dry skin, chapped lips, or a congested nose then a humidifier can help keep your skin and sinuses hydrated.
I prefer to turn mine on at nights and turn off during the day while I’m out and about.
How Often Do I Need To Clean My Humidifier
Mold growth or bacteria can go against the purpose of what a humidifier does. After all, allergic reactions can come from mold!
I can usually see bacteria in my humidifier every 1-2 weeks. Cleaning can easily be done when refilling the tank so I usually have a soaping sponge to sterilize and wipe away bacteria. The inside of the water tank rarely needs to be cleaned.
Utilizing a humidifier for allergies can be a great way to soothe symptoms like dry skin, chronic cough, chapped lips, and itchy eyes. I used them as a child and continue to use a humidifier as an adult but they are also used for babies that may have allergies or a cold.
Humidifiers aren’t necessarily used year round. They tend to be more useful during the dry seasons of winter and summer but it really depends on where you live. The Mid West, East Coast, and South have humid summers and cold winters while the Western U.S. have more arid winters and summers.
The real problem for indoor allergies and dry air is the HVAC (heating and air conditioning). Forced air dries out indoor air and as a result, dries out skin and airways.
I’d wake up every day with a sore throat. I wondered why and thought I had a cold (that lasted months!). Once I began using a humidifier I felt better in the morning because I slept better.
If you or your baby is suffering from allergies I recommend trying a humidifier. It worked well to help reduce my symptoms and I’m sure it can help you too!
Thanks for reading another blog post. I hope my experience provides enough information to help you overcome your allergy.