How Do Personal Air Humidifiers Work?

Personal air purifiers help ease nasal congestion and headaches by keeping the surrounding air moist. The way they work is really quite simple.

Evaporation Humidifiers

Evaporation humidifiers work by creating a breeze over a pad soaked with water. The breeze is created by a fan and because no heat is required, these units can be battery operated, making them very portable.

The humidifiers can be set on a desk hand-held to direct the flow of the breeze. The breeze causes the water in the pad to evaporate and it is expelled from the machine to be absorbed by the surrounding air. This will ease dry noses and often produce rapid reductions in headaches. The pad will dry out but it is very easy to wet it again. The pads need to be kept clean to prevent bacteria and mold.


Vaporizers work in a similar manner to evaporation humidifiers except that they rely upon added heat to evaporate the water. These can be used as personal units but they can only be operated from a main supply point. Battery models have been tried but they cannot provide the time required for the benefit to be appreciated.

Vaporizers are particularly helpful when there is a need to treat a large area or volume of air. The forced evaporation of the water produces a very high level of saturation in the air that is circulated away from the machine.

Cool Mist Humidifiers

Cool mist humidifiers are very popular in very hot countries. These have a water tank that is set so that when a spray button is pressed, a fine mist of water is blown into the air. As with the vaporizer, a cool mist humidifier can be made to treat a very large volume of air to create better conditions very quickly.

Attaching a small water tank to a battery operated fan allows a similar effect to that of an evaporation humidifier but at a very much more personal level. The cool water spray can be self-directed; the effect of the fan is to magnify the cooling effect of the spray. There is a risk of mold and bacteria developing in the tank, but the risk are very small. These hand held cool mist humidifiers are extremely cheap to produce.  

Ultra Sonic Humidifiers

Ultra sonic humidifiers produce the same effect as a spray but by using the ultrasonic frequency sound waves. These waves break up water droplets and a fan helps to circulate them. These units are silent in operation, despite the name.

Ionic Air

Some of the latest personal humidifiers are small but use electrostatic charged elements to create a charge in the air. This charge ionizes the air and helps to remove contaminants. These units have now been reduced in size and can be worn round the neck so that the benefit is gained directly by the wearer.

Personal air humidifiers can be very helpful but one thing that most of them need is a supply of water. If you have a personal humidifier, be sure to have a small supply of water with you.