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Can You Put Essential Oils in a Humidifier?

You’ve just bought yourself a fancy new humidifier that’s going to help you ensure you and your family’s health and wellbeing through those dryer months. That’s great. Humidifiers can be a fantastic addition to your home and bring a lot of comfort and fresh air.

Can you put essential oils in a humidifier though? Many enjoy the smell of a good essential oil, and there are some known benefits to letting them diffuse in your home, but it may not be the wisest decision to pop them into your new humidifier. Here’s why.

Can You Put Essential Oils in a Humidifier?

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Can You Put Essential Oils in a Humidifier?

Simply put, you can put essential oils in some humidifiers, but not all of them.

In fact, when used in certain types of humidifiers, you can not only create a pleasant smell that’ll be present in your home for hours after its been diffused, but you can reap the benefits of them without having to buy an oil diffuser, killing two birds with one stone.

There are two types of humidifiers that can be used in conjunction with essential oils.

The first is the Air Washer.

This filter-less designed humidifier is perfect for essential oils because it has no filter to be replaced. Furthermore, essential oils won’t make the Air Washer dirty – it can easily work without becoming clogged, making it the perfect choice.

Can I Use Essential Oils in Humidifier?

The second choice is a 2-in-1 Humidifier and Diffuser.

Although they can be quite pricey, and aren’t often talked about in too much detail, 2-in-1 humidifier and diffusers do exist, and they’re the perfect addition to your home if you’re looking for the best way to diffuse oils quickly, easily and safely.

The 2-in1 humidifier diffuser has its own special diffuser tray that keeps the oils separate from the humidifier, which means the two will never overlap or cause problems for each other.

There are 3 types of humidifiers that cannot be used with essential oils.

The first is the classic Cool Mist Humidifier

If you popped an essential oil into this type of humidifier, you’d end up spending most of your time cleaning the unit and hoping it works to its full capacity. Furthermore, you’d cause damage to the filters which are used to help trap dirt and bacteria that float around your home, and that would leave the humidifier useless.

The second is the Steam Producing Humidifier

The steam producing humidifier is a great tool for keeping allergies at bay and making sure your home’s humidity is between that perfect 30 – 50% bracket. You should absolutely not use essential oils in this type of humidifier. You’ll only be left cleaning the humidifier constantly if you do put essential oils in it, which will wear it down quickly and prevent it from working at its full potential.

How to Diffuse Essential Oils With a Humidifier
Honeywell HCM350B

The third is the Ultrasonic Humidifier

The Ultrasonic Humidifier must not be used with essential oils. Not only will the humidifier not diffuse them properly, but the oils will cause the insides of the humidifier to break down quickly, meaning you’ll need to replace it much sooner than you’d otherwise need to. It’s not worth the hassle.

Using Essential Oils in a Humidifier

So you’ve picked out the perfect humidifier that allows you to use essential oils alongside it. Can any type of essential oil be used in a humidifier? No, unfortunately, you’ll still need to pick the best oils for the job that won’t cause the unit to become damaged.

Can You Put Essential Oils In A Humidifier
Elechomes UC5501

Whilst it doesn’t matter what scent you choose to use in your humidifier, you do need to be wary of the ingredients. Choose a water soluble oil rather than a regular oil. These types of oils have a better concentration and are great for use in humidifiers, which of course, use water to add humidity to your air.

What makes water soluble essential oils different is the fact that they’ve had the glycerine removed from the oil, which helps them to diffuse more easily as well as give off a more potent scent. Not only is this type of oil better for your humidifier, but you’ll get more out of it too. Perfect.


Stick to the 2 choices of humidifiers we’ve outlined here to make sure you can diffuse your essential oils safely and properly, without the danger of your humidifier breaking all of a sudden. Then, take a moment to relax. Add your favorite essential oil into the mix and get ready for the relaxing atmosphere to take over your home.

Do Not Use Essential Oils in Cool Mist Humidifiers
Vicks Starry Night

Our Recommended Humidifiers

Most Popular The Pure Enrichment MistAire safely and quickly moisturizes dry air for up to 25 hours so you can breathe easy and get more restful sleep. High and low-speed settings combined with a 360° mist nozzle help you consistently balance and regulate the humidity in your home all year long for relief from cold-like symptoms and sinus issues.

Cool & Warm The Levoit LV600HH has everything you’d want in a humidifier, including options for both cool and warm mist and an aroma diffuser for essential oils. It comes with a large water tank and remote control.

Best of the Best The Everlasting Comfort Humidifier is equipped with ultrasonic technology and produces near-silent frequency so you can comfortably ensure your home’s optimal humidity level. An essential oil tray is included to circulate fragrant oils into the cool mist, giving you a pure and fresh smelling aroma throughout your home.

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If you have any questions or comments, please add them below in the comment section. Similarly, please let us know if you spot any mistakes or omissions. Thanks!

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About the author

Hi I’m Alex, founder of HouseholdMe.com and I’d like to say thank you for dropping by. Like most of you, the first thing I look at before buying something online is reviews or buying guides. By reading what other people say will help me gauge whether or not a product is good or not.  I am trying to help people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired.

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