Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Why you should have a humidifier at home


In the winter time your windows are closed and your heating system makes the air dryer, which in turn causes nasal congestion, dry skin, chapped lips, and dry throat which can make you more likely to get a cold or the flu. Also check out my post how to prevent getting sick. The moisture that humidifiers give help to alleviate that as well as static electricity and peeling wallpaper. I know the humidity is low when I walk in my carpeted bedroom and constantly get shocked when I hit the light switch. Also adding humidity to your air makes your home feel warmer so you don't need the heat on as high, thus lowering your heat bill.

I read in Allure magazine that Consumer Reports had ranked Crane as the best humidifier for a small room. Let me tell you I've been in the market for one since last winter but couldn't decide on a model, I was so overwhelmed. I got this humidifier from Amazon which mid-December was on sale for $40 score! I had the hardest time deciding on a color since my bedroom is dark purple, but ended up with the blue and white one. They have also have children designs that look like animals.  It's operates quietly and is easy to use, there's no water mess on the floor or wet mist over nearby furniture. 

I know it's working because I no longer have winter time stuffy nose in the morning from the dry air from indoor heating. And I have a humidity monitor that tells me the humidity has gone up 10-20% in the room (depending if the door is open or closed). The reason I bought this monitor is because in the summertime the humidity is so bad it erodes the batteries in the programmable thermostat on the wall which prevents me from turning on the a/c, obviously that's a huge problem so the monitor allows me to monitor the levels at home so I can make adjustments to the temperature.

Back to the humidifier, you have to care for this appliance carefully for it to work properly, which I think the people who wrote the negative reviews did not. The instructions tell you to keep it at medium level (not sure why there is a high level), to change the water daily and use filtered water if your city has hard water so I only use water from my Brita filter. It also says to empty the water in the basin daily and to clean it weekly with vinegar so it will operate smoothly. Dirty humidifiers breed mold and bacteria.

It has an auto-shut off when it runs out of water. However the on light stays on while I'm sleeping and gives my room a night light.  Expect to refill this daily.  Another healthy winter tip which I follow:
We shed millions of skin cells every single night when we go to bed. These cells build up and cause problems with our breathing including stuffy nose. Make sure that you wash the linens on the beds in your home regularly, especially during the winter months when the air is dry. The dry air causes the skin to become more dry and this means more cells are flaking off at night in bed. Bed linens should be washed in hot water at least one time every week. This will help to prevent a stuffy nose before it starts.

For dry skin check out my review of Trader Joe's Coconut Body Butter and for my face I've been really happy with the Collagen Lift Moisturizer I've started using this nourishing cream this winter to keep my skin hydrated from indoor heat and outdoor cold and wind. It has Encapsulated Retinol which helps increase skin's natural cell turnover and promotes collagen production.

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