Organic Spa Blog

Warm Mist Humidifier vs. Cold-Mist Humidifier

Most Americans drag their own version out of the medicine closet only when they’re stuffy and sneezy, but research shows that some humidifiers may actually help kill the flu virus, in addition to moisturizing the air, your skin, hair, your fingernails and nasal passages.

A cold-mist humidifier feels great on sweaty skin in the summertime, too.

Warm humidifiers boil water, which causes distilled steam to rise like a gentle spray of warm water. This warm mist is easier to breathe in a cool room, though it’s not always appropriate. (Some pediatrician’s caution against using a warm humidifier in children’s rooms because of the risk of burns.)

Cool-mist humidifiers expel vapor that cools room temperature and makes it easier to breathe. They vary in size and design, are less expensive than warm versions, and distribute a cool vaporous mist without using a heat element. They require regular cleaning and replacement of the wick filters, and there’s the potential of mold.

According to the Mayo Clinic, warm or cold humidifiers help moisten the air to cure cracked lips and dandruff. Pets and plants prefer a moister environment, too for overall health and comfort. You can nab an efficient, easy-to-clean model from $35 and up.

Photo credit: Courtesy of Vicks and Honeywell cold-mist humidifier ($40). Comes with a 3-year warranty and two speeds, great for smaller rooms or apartments too.

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