Holds a Master’s degree in Engineering and is keen on her own home’s climate. Sometimes we think that Carolina owns every single product she writes about – that’s how profound and insightful her reviews always are.
For 8 years, Richard had been working as an HVAC specialist and AC unit installer since his student years. Now, he’s our main consultant on every technical aspect that may arise during our tests and research.
Last updated: May 26, 2021
Humidifiers are a great way to improve the air quality in your home. These small devices add moisture to the air, which can help to reduce any breathing or allergy issues that you and your family might be experiencing. If you have a family with small children, then you will want to be sure to get the best cool mist humidifier you can find. This type of humidifier is much safer and can be used for larger areas than a warm mist model. The mist they create is also much easier for a person to inhale, making it much more effective at relieving any breathing issues.
As you can imagine, there is a lot that you need to consider before you go out and get a humidifier. When we put together our list, we first looked at the overall coverage area, tank capacity, and runtime. After that, we looked at the noise level and dimensions of each model. By taking these factors into account, we were able to decide what each of the humidifiers would be best suited for.
In order to gather all of the humidifiers for our comprehensive list, we spent tens of hours looking through hundreds of user reviews. This allowed us to really dive into each model and figure out the best cool mist humidifier on the market today. We then compiled in-depth reviews of each model in our listing, so that you can find the best one for your needs. Of course, if you are not ready to select a particular humidifier yet, please take the time to read through our detailed buying guide.
More features: mist output dial knob; nightlight; low water indicator
If you are looking for what is possibly the best cool mist humidifier on the market, then this might be the right model for you. It is nice and small, which makes it ideal to travel with you to whatever room you might be in during the day. Even when its tank is all the way full, it isn’t too heavy. The tank also seals up nice and tight, so you don’t need to worry about it spilling on you when you move it.
Though this humidifier does not come with a filter, it is quite easy to keep clean. The opening is nice and big, making it simple to reach inside to wash. Since there is no filter, you will need to clean this humidifier at least once a week to prevent bacteria growth and dirt collecting inside.
Even though this is one of the smallest humidifiers on the market, it still will last a good long time on a full tank. In fact, it can last up to 17 hours, as long as you run it on the lowest setting. It is effortless to set the speed that you desire with this humidifier. All you have to do is just twist the dial to the speed you want, and let the unit do its job.
This humidifier also has a pretty large coverage area considering its size. It comes with a night light, making it an excellent option for anyone’s room, especially for a bedroom or a nursery. Thanks to the whisper-quiet operation it won’t interrupt your sleep whatsoever.
More features: built-in replaceable filter; LED night light
Even if you are on a tight budget, you shouldn’t have to deal with dry air in your home. This model is quite cheap, making it a great option for anyone that wants to save some money but still effectively humidify a small space within their home. It is equipped with an easy to change filter that helps to keep it clean while it works. This is extremely useful since it is very difficult to clean the unit itself. Even though it comes with a filter, you will need to make sure you clean this humidifier every other week.
The humidifier has a built-in LED night light. It is quite bright when run on the highest setting, though it can be dimmed. Unfortunately, you cannot turn it all the way off, which could make it difficult for lighter sleepers.
This humidifier is relatively small, which makes it quite portable. It is also very quiet – ideal for a workplace or bedroom. The auto shut-off feature adds to the safety for use in any room of your house.
Something else that is quite surprising for a unit of this size is how long it can last. When the tank is completely full, you can count on it to run continuously for 24 hours, which is outstanding for such a small tank.
More features: essential oils tray; filterless design; built-in nightlight
One of the biggest reasons that lots of people want to buy a cool mist humidifier is so they can improve the air quality of their home. This function lends itself well to the use of essential oils since they are designed to help people in a variety of ways. This humidifier has a built-in oil diffuser tray, which allows you to both humidify your home and diffuse the oils that you need at the same time. This makes it an awesome option for anyone that is looking to improve the air in their home greatly.
This also just might be the best filterless cool mist humidifier on the market. What is impressive about this design is how little it needs to be cleaned. Lots of times, when you get a model that doesn’t require a filter, the machine needs to be cleaned all the time to prevent mold and mildew from forming. That is, thankfully, not the case with this humidifier. It, of course, will still need to be cleaned, which is not always very easy. However, this isn’t too big of a deal since you don’t need to do it all that often.
The run time on this model is also outstanding. It can last up to 50 hours on a single fill up, which is extremely long. Not only that, but it also has an extensive coverage area, which means that you can humidify a large space for a long time.
More features: essential oil tray; comes with a cleaning brush; detachable silencer
Being joint-second on this list when it comes to the longest runtime, it’s obvious that the LEVOIT Classic 200 humidifier device was specifically engineered to optimize your comfort. It’s a humidifier that’s equipped with many high-end features, including Levoit Advanced Ultrasonic Technology. Wondering what this technology does? Well, it helps to atomize water, thereby changing it into a fine mist that’s spread efficiently through the integrated air duct. As you can imagine, this process ensures that your surrounding is evenly humidified.
Unsurprisingly, this classic unit operates quietly, thanks to its DC hydraulic fan and Levoit’s patented silencer. As we’ve come to expect from this company, this device is also as customizable as possible, providing you with three mist settings. This flexibility helps you create a comforting atmosphere that’s been tailored to your liking. Of course, this manufacturer never forgets safety, so the machine comes with an auto shut-off feature, which is activated when the tank is lifted and when the unit runs out of water. On top of that, the product is made of BPA-free materials, making it suitable for your baby nursery.
Another thing that is worthy of note is the fact that the device comes with an essential oil tray, allowing you to infuse the atmosphere with your favorite fragrance. Lastly, cleaning this machine is as easy as a pie, especially as it comes with a complimentary cleaning brush. Besides, the included silencer can be easily detached, so you can always give it a thorough cleaning when necessary. Overall, this is a nice device that anyone would be pleased to have. Keep in mind though, that the unit is bulkier than other similar models which is nothing to be surprised of given its large tank capacity.
Why did it make our list?
Large water tank
Adjustable mist settings
Essential oil tray
What is not ideal about it?
Vicks Mini Filter Free Cool Mist Humidifier – Best Cool Mist Humidifier for Kids
Coverage area: small rooms
Water tank capacity: 0.5 gal.
Runtime: up to 20 hours
Noise level: whisper-quiet
Dimensions: 8.3 x 9.1 x 8.3 inches
More features: no filters are required; compatible with Vicks VapoPads
Vicks has long been a frontrunner in helping people, especially children, breathe easier at night when they are feeling congested. This humidifier is no different. In fact, it can be used with a specific Vicks product called VapoPads. These pads are designed to help alleviate any chest congestion you or your child might be experiencing so that you can sleep at night. With all that said, it’s a perfect humidifier for dry skin, sinus problems, and allergies.
This is a very small humidifier. Its small size helps to make it highly portable. It also will, however, limit the size of the rooms that you can use it in. Of course, most children don’t have overly large rooms, so this shouldn’t be too big of a deal for most families.
Something else to keep in mind with this humidifier is that it has a very small capacity tank. Due to the size of its tank, it cannot be used as long as some other models without having to be filled again. Thankfully, you can extend its runtime by choosing a slower fan speed on the highly adjustable dial.
Unlike lots of other humidifiers, this model from Vicks does not only have three or four-speed settings for its fan. Instead, it has a highly adjustable dial, which allows you to choose a wider range of speeds based on how much humidity you want to add into your home’s air. This makes it much easier to get the right humidity for different people’s different needs.
Clarion Air Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier – Best Cool Mist Humidifier for Large Rooms
Coverage area: up to 530 sq. ft.
Water tank capacity:6 gal.
Runtime: up to 40 hours
Noise level: 35 dB
Dimensions: 15.7 x 12.9 x 8.5 inches
More features: adjustable mist intensity; 360-degree misting nozzle
Though most cool mist humidifier designers aim to keep their products small, and their coverage areas minimal, that is not the case with this model. Instead, Clarion chose to focus on putting out as much cool mist as possible, from a larger capacity container, so that you could humidify a much larger space. This machine would work wonders at bringing up the humidity in a whole floor of a home quickly. You can even focus on a particular area, thanks to the adjustable rotating nozzle.
Because of its larger than the average capacity tank, this humidifier can also run for a good long time before it needs to be refilled. In fact, when it has been properly adjusted, it can last up to 40 hours on a single tank. This long runtime helps to make it a great machine for someone who is looking to set it and forget it.
Of course, all of this size and capacity don’t come without a few drawbacks. The biggest issues with this humidifier are that it is large and loud in comparison to other units. It is also complicated to fill, as the tank cap is undersized.
Something else that really sticks out as a positive for this model is the adjustable fan speed and mist intensity. These two adjustment systems make it a lot easier to get the right amount of humidity into your living spaces in a much quicker fashion than some other humidifiers since they allow you to fine tune the output to match the climate in the interior of your home.
Why did it make our list?
Adjustable fan speed
Adjustable mist intensity
Mist direction can be altered
Large coverage area
What is not ideal about it?
Difficult to fill
Things to Consider
In this section, we’ll cover everything you need to know so that you can get your hands on the best cool mist humidifier for your needs. We have also taken the time to answer some FAQ that you might have as well.
Advantages of cool mist humidifiers
There are two different types of humidifiers that you can purchase: cool or warm mist. While you might think that a warm mist humidifier could be a better purchase since it kills the bacteria in water and can even warm your house, this actually isn’t the case. Cool mist humidifiers offer a variety of advantages that make them a much better buy than their warm mist counterparts.
First of all, the biggest reason that cool mist humidifiers are a better choice is that they are much safer. Since the water inside of them is not warmed up, it will not cause a burn if they are spilled. This makes them an excellent choice for anyone with small children that could accidentally pull the device over and spill it on themselves.
Secondly, cool mist humidifiers are much more efficient. They do not take as much energy to run since they do not contain a heater. They also have much better coverage areas, making them better at spreading their mist over a much larger space than a warm mist model is able to.
Finally, since the mist is not warmed, it is much easier for someone to breathe in. The cool mist helps to alleviate breathing issues in a much timelier fashion than a warm mist humidifier, making them perfect for chronic allergy sufferers or anyone who is sick. Additionally, you might want to check cool mist Vornado humidifiers to forget about those issues.
Features to consider while choosing a cool mist humidifier
As you can imagine, there are a variety of features to take into consideration when you are trying to get the best cool mist humidifier. In this section, we will go through everything you need to know to find the perfect model for you and your family.
The first thing that you will want to take into careful consideration is the size of the space that you want to humidify. Most of these humidifiers are relatively small, making them ideal for a single room. If, however, you want to humidify a larger space, like a whole floor in your home, you will want to look for a model, like the Clarion Air Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier, that can handle a larger area.
Water tank capacity
The water tank capacity of any humidifier is going to go a long way in determining both the coverage area and the runtime. A larger tank will obviously run longer before needing to be refilled. On the other hand, a larger tank will make the humidifier much less portable, since you won’t want to be lugging a large tank around with you into a bunch of different rooms. In that case, you would want a model with a smaller tank, like the Vicks Mini Filter Free Cool Mist Humidifier.
The longer the runtime, the less you will have to fill your humidifier. The runtime is usually determined by the tank capacity, and how fast the fan is running. Every humidifier will run a lot longer on a lower setting since less mist is being produced than on a faster setting. Of all the models we looked at, the Everlasting Comfort Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier has the most extended runtime, topping out at 50 hours.
The noise level of any appliance or tool is usually measured in dB or decibels. The lower the dB, the quieter the machine. This is an important feature to take into account, especially if you are going to be using the humidifier in a bedroom. The Vicks Mini Filter Free Cool Mist Humidifier is one of the best to use in any bedroom or even a nursery.
Dimensions and weight
Since all of these humidifiers are relatively small, none of them are overly heavy. Of course, you need to be careful if you want to use them in more than one room. Even smaller models, like the PurSteam Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier, can get heavier because of the size of their tanks and the weight of the water that they can hold.
While humidifiers might seem like straightforward appliances, there are some moving parts that you need to take special care of so they run correctly. Of course, even if you take excellent care of your device, it is still a good idea to get a model with a warranty. That way, you will be covered should anything fail.
Just be sure to read through the fine print carefully, as some companies are not always straightforward with what they cover.
The most important feature for any humidifier is easy to use controls, as this will allow you to operate it correctly. If you intend to use it in a child’s room, then a night light is another great idea. Some humidifiers also come equipped with essential oil diffusers, which is another good feature to look for.
Tips to clean your humidifier
One of the best ways to keep your cool mist humidifier clean is to get a model that uses a filter. This will help to keep the fan, tank, and internal workings clear of dirt and dust, which will make cleaning your device that much easier. Not all humidifiers require a filter, though. If your device doesn’t have it, be sure to change water and clean it regularly.
Clean your humidifier every week. To do this, pour two cups of undiluted distilled vinegar into the tank and then gently swish it around.
Place the tank on the base so that the vinegar can drain into the water reservoir and remove any built-up materials. You should allow this to soak for about twenty minutes.
Dump out the vinegar and wipe out the tank and reservoir with a soft cloth. You can also complete these same steps with bleach to thoroughly disinfect your humidifier.
Filterless models come out to be cheaper since you don’t need to buy any replacement filters every couple of months. Of course, you will also have more airborne allergens to deal with and will have to take extra care to clean the humidifier. Filtered models might cost a bit more to operate, but they are much cleaner to run.
As long as you take care not to put too much moisture into the air and clean your humidifier regularly, there shouldn’t be any big issues for anyone to use them. On the contrary, humidifiers relieve nose congestion, sore throat, allergy symptoms and even help with dry skin issues.
Of all the different models we looked at, the PurSteam Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier is by far the best cool mist humidifier on the market. Its small size makes it highly portable, and even though it has a small tank, it still lasts a good long time. Add in the fact that it is very easy to keep clean and running, and you can understand why we think so highly of it.
For anyone operating on a limited budget, the T YONG TONG Ultrasonic Humidifier is a great option. Its slim and sleek design help it to fit into any space. It has a very long runtime for such a small humidifier, making it a great value pick.
Filterless humidifiers are a much more economical choice when compared to a filtered model, and the Everlasting Comfort Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier is a testament to this. It doesn’t require any expensive filters to buy every couple of months and, nevertheless, performs greatly.