Whether you're on a life-long quest to keep your apartment fresh, or trying to rid your space of the smell of smoke, the best small air purifiers can help — and you don't even have to donate all your floor space to the cause.
Unfortunately, most people feel they have to have to sacrifice quality for size. That's where these devices come in. There are plenty of tiny purifiers that can tackle large spaces, some that are designed to eliminate germs, and still more that work well on pet dander.
Personally, my top priority is keeping the air in my home as healthy and dust-free as possible. I live in the basement apartment of a house that was built decades ago and was heated with coal for most of its existence. Even though the apartment itself is new construction, I can't go more than two days without getting a layer of soot over all my furniture. For you, your priorities might differ.
But whether you're looking for the absolute smallest purifier that removes 99 percent of dust, or a powerful three-in-one purifier that eliminates bacteria, this list has what you're looking for. So, start scrolling. The best small air purifiers still pack a purifying punch, all despite the fact that you can neatly tuck them into a corner or place them discreetly on your bedside table.
1The Best Overall, According To Both Reviewers & Consumer Reports
With an overall score of 89, the Blue Pure 211+ air purifier is the highest rated air purifier on Consumer Reports. According to their experts, this unit is "especially effective at removing dust, smoke, and pollen at its highest speed," which is vital in cleaning your entire space. It utilizes a three-part filtration system (a fabric pre-filter, a particle filter, and a carbon filter) to remove everything from pollutants to common allergens. Furthermore, the fabric filter is totally washable and can be changed to a different color to suit any decor. Even though it can handle spaces up to 600 square feet and has a 360-degree air intake, its square edges and short height make it one of the more compact units for smaller homes.
2Runner Up: A Mid-Tier Option That Only Costs $90
Thanks to its fine preliminary layer, true HEPA filter, and activated carbon layer, this unit is especially effective when it comes to trapping airborne allergy triggers like dust mites, pollen, smoke, mold, and pet dander — and at just $90, that's a huge value. "I didn't realize how much this air purifier worked until someone turned it off for a few days," one reviewer writes about the LEVOIT purifier. "My allergies came back immediately. This may be small, but it does an amazing job!" Combine the reasonable price with its three different speeds and its discreet design, and you understand why it's a bestseller on Amazon with more than 1,800 reviews. It even has a built-in nightlight function if you're using it in hallways or kids bedrooms.
3The Smallest: A Compact Purifier That Still Removes 99 Percent Of Dust
If you're really limited on space (or you're looking for a convenient way to purify your office), there's the Holmes air purifier. This one can be placed vertically or horizontally on virtually any desk or table, making it the most space-savvy unit on this list. Despite its size, it has three speeds and manages to remove up to 99 percent of dust, pollen, smells, and mold spores. You can use it alongside any Holmes AER1 series filter (like Smoke Grabber or Total Air) to better personalize it to your needs. It even has an optional ionizer to bind with smaller pollutants, improving the quality of your air even further.
4The Best Germ-Killer: This Three-In-One Purifier That Destroys Bacteria
In addition to a three-layer filter to catch pollutants and odors, the PureZone three-in-one purifier also has a built-in UV-C light. This serves to destroy airborne microorganisms like viruses, bacteria, and fungi, making it the best choice for those concerned with the spread of germs. The touch-button technology allows you to set automatic timers and choose between three speeds, all of which are so quiet, you'll forget its in the room. Out of 800-plus reviewers, more than 80 percent have given it a five-star rating because of how quiet, compact, and effective it is. "We love this guy and can't wait to not get sick this fall!" one raves.
5The Best For Big Spaces: A Slightly Larger Purifier That Can Filter Air Five Times Per Hour
It may look unsuspecting compared to other purifiers, but this one from Honeywell is surprisingly powerful. It can tackle molecules that are 250 times smaller than the average human hair, all thanks to its true HEPA filter. It's suitable for rooms up to 310 square feet, and can filter and circulate the air five times per hour, which is way more efficient than most other units this size. If you have a specific issue you're trying to fix, Honeywell is also one of the few models that gives you different modes — germs, general clean, allergens, and turbo. "I'm in an apartment, so it's more than enough to handle my living room," says one reviewer who saw a difference in their allergies less than an hour after setting it up.
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