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The 3 Best Air Purifiers For Babies

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Keeping babies safe, clean, and cozy is always a priority, but there’s one thing that’s less obvious to keep clean because you can’t see it: the air in your baby’s room. The best air purifiers for babies use powerful true HEPA filters to remove pollutants and allergens as small as 0.3 microns with enough coverage for the nursery or play areas in your home.

Air purifiers capture pollutants in the air and filter clean air back out. To find the most effective unit at improving your indoor air quality, you’ll want a model with a true HEPA filter to remove at least 99.97% of pollutants and irritants as tiny as 0.3 microns like pet dander, smoke, pollen, and dust mites. Additional filters can create three- to four-stage filtration systems to capture different particles. An activated carbon filter can also remove gases like VOCs, aka volatile organic compounds, while pre-filters can trap larger particles, like pet hair. Keep in mind most filters should be replaced every six to 12 months, and carbon filters have to be replaced even more frequently, every three months or so.

No matter how great the air purifier is, it's not going to get the job done if it's not capable of covering the size of your space. More affordable units can cover about 150 square feet, while higher-end purifiers can cover more than 300 square feet and are ideal if you want to get a lot of use out of your unit in different areas of your home beyond the nursery. For point of reference, the average bedroom is 120 to 150 square feet.

Another thing to consider is how loud an air purifier is while running, especially since some users like to run purifiers for extended periods of time or overnight. The best air purifiers hum relatively quietly on the lowest setting, but you’ll want to keep sounds around babies under 60 decibels (or the equivalent of normal conversation) to maintain a safe volume. It’s also a good idea to simply place the air purifier at a distance from your little one or run it in their room before bedtime.

With all this in mind, here are the four best air purifiers for babies.

1. The Overall Best Air Purifier For Babies

The best air purifier for babies stands out for its four-step filtration system and reasonable price point for its performance. A pre-filter, deodorization filter, true HEPA filter, and ion layer capture up to 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, such as pollen, allergens, and odors, in rooms up to 361 square feet.

This highly rated air purifier, with a sleek design in either white or black, maintains a 4.7-star rating and over 8,000 reviews on Amazon, and it's also delightfully quiet for your baby's nursery with a decibel range between 24.4 and 53.8, depending on the setting. The air purifier's convenient features include a pollution sensor, timer, three fan speeds, and filter replacement indicator. You can set the purifier on auto mode and it will choose a speed to clean the air accordingly; eco mode turns the fan off when no pollution is detected after 30 minutes. Plus, this model has remained the top Wirecutter pick for best air purifier since 2015.

A helpful review: “[...] We have two dogs and my father has allergies and usually gets stuffed up within 15 minutes of coming to our house. Since getting the filter, he has not had any allergy symptoms on either of his last two visits, So I know it’s working. It’s also super quiet. Very happy with my purchase”

2. The Runner-Up

Here's another air purifier with a HEPA filter — one for less than $100 — to consider for your baby's room. Its three-filter system uses a pre-filter, a true HEPA filter, and an activated carbon filter to trap fine 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns, like allergens, and pollutants like dust, mold, smoke, dander, and pollen. The carbon filter is specifically designed to neutralize toxins in the air from smog and wildfire smoke.

For less than half the price of my top pick, this one's combined features and filters have made it a bit of a cult favorite with nearly 20,000 reviews, though keep in mind it covers 219 square feet, which is substantially less space than the first pick. It's a quiet machine with a decibel range of 24 to 50 decibels, and you can choose from a white or black finish to match your decor. For nighttime use, the display light can be turned off, and you can set a timer for the purifier to run, too. A replacement filter indicator makes it simple to replace filters as needed and keep the purifier running optimally.

A helpful review: “[...] About a month ago, we moved our 10 month old baby to her own room so I got this air purifier for her. After turning on for about 30 mins, the air in the room felt significantly different. It felt smoother to breathe in. Ended up keeping my baby in my bedroom while having the purifier on overnight and we both had THE BEST NIGHT OF SLEEP in the longest time! Baby didn't wake up in the mid of the night and I woke up feeling super refreshed! Bought a second air purifier for my bedroom and about 1 week in, I realized I haven't coughed in a long time and it's been staying that way. Literally - life saver for me! Can't live without!!”

3. The Upgrade Pick

This Dyson air purifier with Wi-Fi is the priciest option on this list, but this upgrade pick comes with worthwhile features that make it an investment. This pick has a much larger coverage area — up to 500 square feet — to circulate purified air in an entire room, big or small. A true HEPA filters traps allergens and pollutants, including bacteria and dust, while a second layer with active carbon removes odors and volatile organic compounds, like paint fumes. Like the first two picks, this one removes 99.97% of particles as small as 0.3 microns.

You'll love that this air purifier constantly monitors the air quality and automatically reacts. A unique feature is its bladeless design that works as a cooling fan in the summer and a heater during winter so your baby can be comfortable at any temperature. Plus, the corresponding smartphone app delivers air quality reports in real time and comes with a remote control.

Other features include a sleep timer, night mode, and connectivity with Amazon Alexa as another way to adjust its settings. And if you're particularly concerned about allergens around your baby, rest assured that this air purifier is certified asthma and allergy-friendly. It's also a Parent Tested Parent Approved winner.

This pick is louder than others as it reaches up to 62 decibels, although it can be run on lower settings that are quieter. That said, it is three machines in one so you're getting a truly multipurpose machine. Reviewers noted they only need a replacement filter every one to two years.

A helpful review: “This was a game changer for our baby's room that was always cold. We program it to go on just before bed and off in the morning automatically. Her room is now always a consistent temp. Plus it's not hot to the touch, allowing us to keep it on the floor.”