People spend a lot of time dialing in the perfect temperature for their homes, but few are worry about their home's humidity levels. While people associate humidity with feeling hot and sticky in the summer, indoor humidity is important to your health. The ideal humidity levels are between 30 percent and 50 percent, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. For reference, the humidity levels in the Sahara Desert are around 25 percent, and most homes are anywhere between 5 percent and 20 percent. Too-dry air will lead to dry, cracked skin and will open the door to various sinus and respiratory issues. Even in the summer, running an air conditioner will zap humidity from the air, and a humidifier will put back the right amount. And if you're noticing a shortage of humidifiers, it could be the fact that increased humidity can slow down COVID-19 infection rates and ease symptoms of the virus. We got our hands on a mess of humidifiers, and these 10 are the best ones to buy.
- Best Overall Humidifier: Levoit LV600HH Hybrid Ultrasonic Humidifier
- Best Splurge Humidifier: Homedics TotalComfort Deluxe Ultrasonic Humidifier
- Best Budget Humidifier: Pure Enrichment MistAire Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier
- Best Humidifier for Large Rooms: Honeywell HEV685W
- Best Humidifier for Small Rooms: Levoit 200
- Best Looking Humidifier: Honeywell Designer Series Cool Mist Humidifier
- Best Circulating Humidifier: Vornado EV100 Evaporative Humidifier
- Best Smart Humidifier: Levoit VeSync Dual 200S
- Best Quiet Humidifier: Crane Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier
- Best Best Subscription-Based Humidifier: Canopy
The Best Humidifiers of 2021
The Levoit LV600HH isn't the sleekest device, but it makes up for its sterile looks with an incredibly robust well of features and options. You can toggle between ultrasonic cool and warm mists, and with its spacious 1.5 gallon water tank, the Levoit 600 can be used for up to 60 hours without having to refill the reservoir. A built-in humidistat keeps track of the humidity in the air, and it will help the humidifier get up to the desired levels then shut off so you don't end up with, what our tester calls, "tropical level of aerial moistness." The humidifier is perfect for large rooms, and you shouldn't have to worry about over humidifying small rooms thanks to the aforementioned built-in humidistat.
- Good for rooms of all sizes
- Extra-large water tank
- Isn't the most attractive device
Instead of a bulky, space-hogging body, the Homedics TotalComfort Deluxe Ultrasonic Humidifier is shaped like a tower so it eats up less precious real estate. The 360-degree nozzle spews cool or warm mist throughout my home and actually makes me feel like my body is slowly taking in more moisture. Like the Levoit 600, the water tank has a 1.5-gallon capacity, except Homedics claims it can last for up to 70 hours of continuous use. Set your target humidity levels, and let the Homedics humidifier fill your home with some sweet, sweet humidity.
- Long-lasting continuous mist
- Space-saving, attractive design
- Super affordable
- Easy to use
- Effective humidifier
- Dual water tanks
- Effective, but only in smaller rooms
- Easy to clean
- Smaller footprint
- Quiet operation
- Humidity is spread throughout the room
- Able to choose a target humidity level
- Easy to tell when water tank is low
- Annoying to fill the water tank
- More of a personal humidifier
- Oddly shaped water tank is hard to clean
- Takes up a lot of space
- Mist doesn't last as long as other humidifiers on this list
- Annoying to clean
- Design may be too sci-fi for some
As our tester says, "As far as materials go, I'll say that it was very clearly a $40 humidifier." On the operating front, it works. It's a tiny device and will only work if you don't try to push it past its limit (or put it in a room above over 250 square feet). Our reviewer says he could feel the increase in humidity, and his dog's skin did become less dry. Operating it is easy, since there's only one button, and you only really need to toggle between high and low speeds. The tank shape makes it a bit annoying to clean, but it's not impossible.
This humidifier is huge. It has two water tanks, and each holds 1.5 gallons of water. If size isn't an issue, this is a damn good humidifier (if you can find it in stock). Our tester found that in less than an hour, the full-moisture setting brought his bedroom up from 25 percent humidity to the high 30s or low 40s — after a few hours, he's hitting the high 40s, low 50s. The two tanks are both a blessing and a curse. You can fill up less often, but you also have two tanks to clean and refill. Luckily cleaning the tanks is easy. Our tester likes especially likes their sink-friendly flat-bottom, top-fill design and ergonomic grips.
The first thing our tested noticed about the Levoit 200 was its Apple-like design, and it does look like an iMac G3. The compact humidifier is simple and straightforward, with just a single button for operating. The gallon-sized tank can run for 40 hours on low and 10 hours on high. Our tester is a big fan of the Levoit 200, and notes that he no longer wakes up with cracked lips and a dry nose. It’s also very quiet, and our tester can barely notice its gentle hum even when it's right next to his ear. with it just a foot or two from my ear. One drawback is its smaller capacity, but the tank is fairly easy to clean.
For $20 more, there's a smart version of this device if you want to have remote control over the device.
Humidifiers are not the nicest home appliance. Honeywell clearly knew this when it launched the Designer Series line of humidifiers, which our tester says looks like a Sonos speaker (if you're into that). The cylindrical shape gives the unit a smaller footprint, which was a bonus for our studio-living tester. A huge plus is there is no fan noise, and a lack of an evaporative filter that must be made wet was nice to not have to deal with. Cleaning is relatively simple, too, though dragging the cord to the sink to the clean the whole unit is a minor pain point. In short, the Designer Series looks good, it works, but as our tester notes "humidifiers on the whole are kind of a pain in the ass to deal with."
The Vornado EV100 has a futuristic look to it, and offers a little more control than most humidifiers on this list. Dial in your desired humidity levels (but only between 40 percent and 60 percent) and let this thing run freely on high, low or auto. Like Vornado's other products, the humidifier Vortex Action technology to better circulate air throughout the room. The tank is easy to carry and clean, and because it's clear, it's easy to tell when it's time to top up.
Adding "smart" to a home appliance usually means tacking on a lot of extra money. The Levoit VeSync Dual 200S is smart, but it's also incredibly affordable. The humidifier has an easy-to-clean three-liter water tank, with a runtime of 25 hours and a coverage area of 290 square feet. When you pair the humidifier with the accompanying app, you can get a wealth of added functionalities. The app gives you remote control and compatibility with voice assistants (Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa). The humidifier is great to leave on at night with its quiet operation, the option to turn of the display lights and auto-off function. All you have to do is set your desired humidity level and let the 200S do all the work.
- Effective humidifier
- A smart device without the smart price tag
- Short runtime
- Feels plastic-y
The tear drop-shaped Crane humidifier is one of the quietest humidifiers on the market with a coverage area of 500 square feet, an impressive feat considering its small size. Mist is dispersed 360 degrees from the spout, and the humidifier is made of an antimicrobial material, which the brand claims reduces mold and bacteria growth by up to 99.96 percent. The gallon-sized water tank can keep mists going for up to 24 hours, and it'll automatically turn off when the water tank is depleted
- Quiet operation
- Inoffensive design
- Short runtime
- Not easy to clean
Canopy is a new brand of humidifiers that posits the device as the missing part of your skincare routine. And it's true: Proper humidity levels can make your skin healthier. The Canopy humidifier uses evaporative moisture that's filtered to be free of bacteria and unwanted particles. People tend to forget to change their humidifier's filter, but if you sign up for Canopy's subscription program, you can make sure you're always stocked with filters. It has 36 hours of runtime, and its smart sensors ensure it maintains the proper humidity levels. Canopy is one of the nicer humidifiers out there, and it also doubles as an oil diffuser.
- Attractive design
- Dishwasher safe
- Slightly noisy
Clean air, full lungs, can't lose.