Which baby humidifier is best?
When you’re preparing the nursery for a new little one, you take every precaution to create a safe, healthy space. But many parents forget one key addition when they’re shopping for baby gear: a humidifier. Having a humidifier in your child’s room prevents the air from getting too dry when you run your HVAC system. It’s important because dry air can lead to a stuffy nose, sore throat or other respiratory illnesses. It can also cause dry, irritated skin and trigger skin conditions like eczema. A baby humidifier doesn’t just prevent dry air in your nursery — it can also produce soothing white noise that helps lull your baby to sleep, even in a noisy home.
Our buying guide has everything you need to find the best baby humidifier for your nursery. We’ve included some specific product recommendations at the end, like our top pick from Pure Enrichment, which can run for up to 25 hours on the low setting and offers two different misting intensities.
What to know before you buy a baby humidifier
These are the different types of humidifiers suitable for baby rooms or nurseries:
These humidifiers are the most basic and affordable. They feature a wick that soaks up water from the reservoir and a small fan that then blows moist air into the room. The wick filters out any impurities in the water, but it must be replaced every few months or so. Cool mist models can be somewhat noisy, lower the room’s temperature, and may even wet nearby surfaces.
This type of humidifier, which are also known as vaporizer, features a heating element that boils the water in the reservoir, allowing it to release steam into the room. Warm mist humidifiers don’t require a filtered wick because the boiling process removes impurities from the water. Warm mist humidifiers work well for nasal congestion and help maintain the temperature of the room. There is a risk of scalding or burns, and they require more energy than cool mist models. They aren’t recommended for children who are old enough to crawl.
Ultrasonic humidifiers use the latest technology to bring moisture to a room, utilizing high-frequency sound waves to turn the water in the reservoir into an ultrafine mist. A fan then blows the mist outward and into the room. They’re able to produce both cool and warm mist and don’t make much noise. They produce a powder due to mineral buildup that can accumulate inside the reservoir and fall on nearby surfaces, so use distilled water rather than tap.
What to look for in a quality baby humidifier
UVA and UVB rays are ultraviolet light produced by the sun that can cause skin damage. Baby humidifiers use UVC, which is another form of ultraviolet light that can kill viruses, bacteria and mold in a matter of seconds. Many parents enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a UV-equipped humidifier.
- A water level indicator sounds an alert or flashes an indicator light to let you know when you need to add more water.
- A rotating nozzle allows you to aim the mist exactly where you want.
- Auto shut-off automatically turns the humidifier off if it’s tipped over or runs out of water.
- Adjustable output allows you to determine how much mist the humidifier produces.
- A humidistat lets you set the humidity level you want for the room and then turns the humidifier off when it’s reached. It turns the unit back on if the moisture level drops. This is usually only found on high-end humidifiers.
- A filter indicator lets you know when it’s time to change the humidifier’s filter.
Baby humidifiers are usually designed with a nursery in mind, so you can find models in cute animal shapes, including elephants, bunnies, whales, or other fun critters. If you prefer a simpler look, you can also find models with a standard humidifier design.
For safety reasons, you should clean your baby humidifier regularly. Choose a model that comes apart readily for easy cleanup. Make sure the humidifier is easy to fill too — look for a model with a large opening for refills.
How much you can expect to spend on a baby humidifier
You usually pay between $20-$50 for a baby humidifier. A cool mist or entry-level ultrasonic model typically goes for $20-$30, but a feature-packed cool mist, warm mist or ultrasonic model can cost between $30-$50. For $50 and more, you can get a model with the latest technology and even more special features.
Baby humidifiers FAQ
What kind of water should I use in my baby’s humidifier?
A. It’s best to avoid using tap water in a humidifier because it contains minerals that can build up inside. Instead, opt for distilled water to prevent any issues.
Where should I put my baby’s humidifier?
A. The best place to put a humidifier in a nursery is on a dresser or table near the crib, but make sure there are at least three feet between the unit and the crib.
What baby humidifiers are best to buy?
Top baby humidifier
Our take: This is a well-liked, high-performing humidifier that offers many special features to help your child get a good night’s sleep.
What we like: It offers two mist intensity options, as well as a soothing blue night light. It doesn’t make much noise and can run for 16 hours on the low setting. It automatically shuts off when it’s out of water. The nozzle rotates to allow you to change the mist direction.
What you should consider: The LED night light may be too bright for some babies.
Where to buy: Sold by Wayfair
Top baby humidifier for the money
Our take: This humidifier offers variable speeds, a reservoir that holds a gallon of water, is available in a variety of cute designs and comes in at an affordable price point.
What we like: It offers up to 24 hours of quiet operation. It features an antimicrobial base to prevent bacteria and mold growth. It’s available in elephant, owl, hippo, cow, ladybug and other adorable animal shapes.
What you should consider: This can’t be used with essential oils and may not be as durable as other humidifiers.
Where to buy: Sold by Wayfair
Worth checking out
Our take: This humidifier features a totally quiet operation and excellent performance, making it the ideal addition to any nursery.
What we like: The 360º rotating nozzle and different mist settings guarantee an even and consistent level of humidity in the whole room.
What you should consider: This is only available in blue.
Where to buy: Sold at Amazon
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Jennifer Blair writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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