Use Vaporisers & humidifiers to increase your wellbeing at home
Here’s a confession: I don’t mind winter. (Though there is one thing about it I can’t stand … I’ll get to that.)
In fact, I quite like unfurling my favourite blanket, unpacking my down jacket, and unwinding in a warm place with a good book or Netflix series.
There’s nothing quite like a hot drink on a cool evening, or a quick dip in the ocean if you’re brave, or the beautiful golden hue of the morning at the start of a July day.
But there’s one thing I’m not a fan of. Won’t tolerate it. Can’t say a good word about it.
The dry air in my house. I swear, in winter my house becomes a mini Saharan Desert, minus the heat. I end up with my very own personalised micro-climates, with the humidity dialled down to zero and the dryness lingering like some unwanted phantom.
And I’m not alone. In winter, humidity levels tend to plummet. Add to this our use of air conditioning and heaters, and it’s a recipe for disaster.
Does that all sound a little melodramatic? Let me put it simply: when the humidity drops below 30%, you could end up with:
- Dry skin
- Discomfort to the nose and lips
- Damage to wallpaper and paint
- Excess static electricity
It’s not a pretty list. And it’s not a pretty feeling. To be fair, we can’t blame low humidity entirely on winter. It could also be caused by:
- Weather patterns in warmer months
- Dry air from inland
- The location and geography of your home
- The materials used to construct your house
- The design and use of your air-conditioning unit
No wonder people ask how to boost the humidity in their homes. I’ve heard stories of people leaving buckets of water around the house, patiently waiting for the process of evaporation to do its magic. Other families try to beat the dry by turning their home into an indoor washing line and hanging damp clothes around the house, especially near draughts or heaters.
If either of these home remedies sounds appealing, then my hat goes off to you. I wish I had your patience – and the willingness to turn my house into a giant science experiment. Alas, I do not.
Here’s the good news: there is a simpler solution. I’m thinking of two options: vaporisers & humidifiers.
To vaporise or humidify?
Vaporisers & humidifiers essentially do the same thing: they convert water into mist or vapour. Basically, they use the power of magic (i.e. technology) to speed up a normal, natural process. Because of this, vaporisers & humidifiers are a fantastic natural way to increase the humidity of your home and create a healthy and liveable environment.
A vaporiser creates mist by heating the water. Picture a pot of uncovered boiling water on your stove. That’s a primitive vaporiser. Of course, it isn’t particularly safe, and you wouldn’t want one simmering away all day long! Think of a modern vaporiser as a safer, smaller, more ergonomic solution. Heat + water = vapour.
A humidifier on the other hand will generally not use heat to create vapour. Instead, it will use one of two methods to create the mist. Some humidifiers use a wicking filter. Basically, a fan blows cool air across water that has soaked into a filter. The air evaporates some of the water in the filter, carrying it out into your room. Other humidifiers use ultrasonic vibrations to produce mist.
Which is best for me?
There are plenty of fantastic vaporisers & humidifiers out there. The question really isn’t ‘Which product is the best?’ Instead, the question is ‘Which product is the best for me?’
- Do you have children or pets? If you do, choose a product that runs cold, not hot. This will be on the specifications. In general, a product that uses a wicking filter or ultrasonic vibrations will not heat the water, meaning that if it is accidentally knocked over there’s no risk of being scalded.
- Do you want to add essential oils, medicine, or scent? Many people swear by a dash of eucalyptus oil, or like the smell of lavender in the morning. If you want to distribute fragrances or medicine, make sure you choose a product that is designed for this. Vaporisers might be your best choice if this is a priority.
- Do you travel often? No, I’m not just making conversation – this question may determine the type of vaporiser or humidifier that you buy. If you travel often, you may like to get your hands on a smaller product that you can take with you. This may be especially helpful if you take many long international or domestic flights; the air in planes can be extraordinarily dry, which can take a toll on your body.
- Do you need all the bells and whistles, or do you prefer something simple and effective? More humidifiers & vaporisers often come with all sorts of features. Many now have built-in timers and automatic shut-offs; have a look at the different features (and price points) and choose something that works best for you. Personally, I think that auto-off features are essential.
- Do you want to dehumidify an entire room, on just the area that you are in? The question might seem a little silly. I can almost hear you thinking, ‘Of course I want to dehumidify an entire room!’ The thing is, dehumidifiers that are large enough to do this are often quite large, heavy, and cumbersome to store. You might decide that a smaller, nimble, portable product is suitable for you and your family’s needs.
A dehumidifier or a vaporiser might just be the next best addition to your home. I’m a big believer in this simple reality: wellbeing starts in the home. And, believe it or not, the level of humidity in your home is part of the puzzle. Whatever the needs of your family, I’m sure that we can help.