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Do you still think of a humidifier as one of those awkward, bulky boxes that sits in the corner of a living room, gurgling all day? Surprise! Today’s humidifiers actually have a ton of health benefits and lifestyle features, not to mention a more contemporary look. Here are some of the reasons you might benefit from one.

Combat pesky sinus and immune system troubles. If you live in a dry climate or suffer through long winters, you might experience some frustrating symptoms associated with dry environments, like irritated skin, frizzy hair, sinus congestion or a dry throat.

A humidifier uses a fan and water supply to pull dry air in, saturate it and disperse it back out. This adds moisture to the air, helping soothe dry skin, encourage sinuses to flow properly and make breathing easier.

Sleep easier. A lot of people find their symptoms are most obvious at night, which can lead to sleep disturbances. A chronic cough, dry throat or painful sinus congestion can really do a number on a restful sleep. In turn, this can affect your immune system, which is why replenishing your home’s moisture levels can actually have an impact on your health. Today’s humidifiers can very easily run a full eight hours before needing to be replenished, and many of them have “quiet” settings for overnight use.

Freshen up with some essential oils. Some models have a feature that diffuses essential oil, so not only can you ensure your air is moisture-balanced, but you have the option of adding a scent of your choice. Unlike a scented candle, it doesn’t require constant supervision and it means you can get two benefits at once, instead of opting for a separate diffuser. This goes a long way to making your home feel fresh, clean and energizing. If you have pets, however, do some research to determine if these essential oils are hazardous to their health before using them.

It’s a toxin-free way to improve air quality. Using a pretty simple method, humidifiers present a chemical-free way of improving your home’s air quality. Adding moisture to the air allows your body to purify it, decreasing your risk of infection or airborne allergies. Moisture-balanced air is also kinder to your home in general, decreasing the risk of warping and cracking in your floorboards and furniture.