Image Credit: @livinglifesmoments
Chances are your parents used a humidifier at some point when you were a kid, and even though the basics and reasons for owning one are the same, baby stuff has come a long way, making it pretty high-tech. Since a humidifier is a popular purchase for new moms and dads, there are many models and price points on the market, and because this is just another item on your growing list of nursery necessities, choosing the right one for your family could be overwhelming.
Don’t worry. We’ve been there, and we’ve done the research. As always, we want to help make your transition into parenthood less complicated, so read on for a little more info about when and why you need a humidifier, plus features to look out for. It’s kinda like Humidifier 101, and should be all you need to grab the one for you off the shelf (or click BUY) and check another must-have off your list.
When do you use a humidifier?
How often you’ll need a humidifier will vary by your location, climate, and health concerns. However, in general, humidifiers help when baby is congested or has a cough. This can be from illness, allergies, or asthma. Many think they’ll only need a humidifier in the winter months when colds and flu are running rampant. But in the warm season, if you’re using an air conditioner often, regulating the humidity indoors while baby sleeps can help prevent dryness of the skin, as well as the sinuses, nasal passages, and throat.
What to shop for:
1. Safety First
All humidifiers add moisture to the air. (You probably just said “Duh.” But give us a sec; we’re stating the obvious so we can move on to the important stuff). There are cool mist and warm mist humidifiers. For safety purposes (your first priority), target your search to the cool vapor mist models. Why? Because the hot water or steam from a warm-mist humidifier can burn your little one if they get too close or if the hot water spills. Added bonus: filling the air with cool mist increases the humidity in the room without raising the temperature.
Some humidifiers have auto shut-off and other safety measures like control lockout and night mode, all intended to make it safer to leave in the room with baby.
2. Easy to Operate
If you’re leaning toward a humidifier with features that give it more functionality, you still want it to be simple to set up and run. There aren’t enough minutes in a day to waste on figuring out the tricks your new machine can do, and a quick start-up is key. You probably don’t want a gadget that’s smarter than you are, but finding a humidifier that makes taking care of your LO easier and saves you time is pretty important. Look for one that can be controlled remotely through an app on your smartphone, because think about what that means. When your sleepy self is up (again) in the middle of the night doing diaper change number “too many to count”, and you stumble back to bed, suddenly realizing you forgot to check the water level on the humidifier, you can breathe a sigh of relief as you simply check the app. When you see that it’s all good, you get to stay under the covers. Some smart humidifiers can even be controlled via your voice if you have Alexa or Google Assistant.
Other nice perks to have: real-time humidity and temperature measurement, and a timer. A built-in nightlight makes seeing the humidifier easier in the dark, as well as gives you the right amount of light to move about without disturbing your sleeping angel.
3. Easy to Clean
Filters are no fun to mess with. So choosing a filter-free humidifier will simplify your life. Dirty humidifiers are a breeding ground for germs, and the last thing you want is anything harmful floating around the room. Here’s where going high-tech really makes a difference. Look for one with antimicrobial LED lights, which kill 99.9% of bacteria and while plugged in, continuously sanitizes itself to keep it staying cleaner longer. One less thing you need to take care of. (You do enough of that already.)
4. Easy to Transport
Think long-term as you consider which humidifier suits your situation the best. From the arrival of your tiny boss to school days when your big kid is fighting off a cold. As your family grows, you’ll likely find yourself needing to move the humidifier from room to room. You’ll appreciate having one that blends in with all decor and is portable when you’re passing out tissues and cough medicine. Imagine the baby’s fine, but your oldest has the sniffles, so it’s going to their bedroom. Or you may want to take it to the “sleepover” at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. Yes, they still have your old one stored under the bathroom sink, but you’d rather not use that relic. You’ll breathe easier knowing your modern appliance is plugged in and ready to go.
Note: Check out Types of Humidifiers for more info on how they differ.
True, you know your days are about to get busier. But the good news is that preparing the baby’s room is way less complicated with products that do double and triple duty, so you can spend less time on the to-do list and more time recording all those firsts.