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Originally published by Ching Yuen. Last updated by Beverly Ngai.
Now more than ever, the importance of personal hygiene and sanitation has become a conscious priority. Next to regularly washing your hands with sanitising soap and minimising physical contact with others, you can also take steps to ensure that your home and personal space is clean. You might already be scrubbing every surface you can reach but there are some things—particularly in the air—that aren’t as easy to get rid of. The best solution? Invest in an air purifier to filter out as many pollutants as possible so you can breathe a little easier!
Offering some of Korea’s best technology, the wireless portable air purifier ($698) from Lumena N9-A1 is one to look out for if you are on the hunt for an affordable and stylish air purifier that adds, rather than detracts, from your décor. It uses a medical-grade HEPA H13 filter with 99.7 percent efficiency, meaning it can isolate floating particles in the air, including allergen particles, bacteria, and viruses (up to PM 2.5). The purifier also has a display screen to show the air quality index. If the index is below average, its smart sensor will turn on turbo mode automatically. Frankly, that sleek rose-gold-on-black aesthetic is enough for us to buy one for our own desks!
This compact air purifier is perfect for travel, in the car, office, or your bedroom. Gemini’s ionic HEPA filtration air purifier ($998) has a three-stage filtration system to purify and remove dust and bacteria in the air effectively. The pre-filter that sifts through large particles and removes hair dust in the air, then the HEPA filter captures 99.7 percent of dust as mall as 0.3 microns, such as mould spores, plant pollens and bacteria. Lastly, there's the activated carbon filter that absorbs aromatic compounds and chemicals at a molecular level. There is even a built-in negative ion that kills bacteria and aids in the purification process!
If we are conscious of what we put inside our body, shouldn’t we also be conscious about the air we breathe? Air purifier 3 ($1,099) from Mi is a simple and elegant design that will give your lungs a treat. Offering a Clean Air Delivery Rate (CADR) of 400 cubic metres per hour, with an effective coverage area of 48-square-metres, it takes the machine only 12 minutes to circulate purified air in your home. It can also easily link up with your smartphone so that you can switch the machine on and off, and even set schedules from remote so you can ensure that you will get back to fresh and clean air in your flat.
Philips’ award-winning Series 800 air purifier ($1,298) is a small yet effective device that can bring clean air to your home in a compact way. Nano-sized particles as small as 0.003 micrometres (800 times smaller than PM 2.5) can be effectively removed, including 99.9 percent of viruses and bacteria. The intelligent auto purification sensor can react to even the slightest change in the air and change the purification mode accordingly! Now that’s smart tech at its very best.
Maxell’s ionised wind deodoriser ($1,650) was created with the latest patented technology from Japan, making it capable of generating three times the amount of ions needed for decomposing bacteria, viruses, and odour. Apart from its strong oxidising power, its chic design can fit in seamlessly as part of your home décor or office and give you a clean, fresh, and comfortable space!
Clocking in at about the size of a water bottle and easy to use anywhere, the Plus Smart personal air purifier ($1,798) from Wynd is an intelligent personal air quality system. Its lightweight design is powerful enough to create a bubble of clean air around you, promising an environment that is free of dust, allergens, smoke, and pollution. It also offers an iOS app that lets you learn more about your environment, receive alerts as necessary, and control the device all in the palm of your hand. Is it just us or does it also look like a loudspeaker?
This sleek Blue Pure 211+ air purifier ($2,791) from Blueair is best for removing various particles, including dust and smoke, from the air. It also has a three-stage filtration system (one each for fabric, particles, and carbon particles) which claims to clear up to 99 percent of common airborne pollutants.
Perhaps the most stylish air purifier on this list, the Lightair IonFlow 50 Evolution air cleaner ($3,980) sports a sophisticated Scandinavian design with a beautiful slightly conical stand. It can clean the air from 99.94 percent of the most harmful particles—fine, ultra-fine, and nanoparticles all the way down to PM 0.007—using patented technology.
IonFlow works by charging the particles in the air negatively, while the collector is positively charged. This means that the particles will be drawn to the collector pretty much in the same way a magnet works and makes it possible to eliminate viruses while they are still airborne in the room
If the signature sleek, minimalistic design of Dyson’s Pure Cool Link DP04 desk purifier fan ($4,480) does not appeal to you, its unique 2-in-1 function certainly will! This fan-cum-air-purifier boasts a child-friendly and bladeless design that keeps you cool while capturing 99.95 percent of potentially harmful pollutants in the air with its HEPA and activated carbon filter. It oscillates up to 350 degrees, allowing cool, purified air to be delivered to every corner of the room. As if that weren’t enough, the intelligent machine detects air quality in real-time and reports to your Dyson Link app you can install on your phone so you can monitor the air in your home wirelessly. Oh, and when the weather gets too cold for a fan? Just switch to the draught-free mode and enjoy lungfuls of purified air without the cooling function.
With COVID-19 still on everyone’s minds and keeping us on our tippy toes, Aurabeat’s latest AG+ Silver Ion Plasma sterilisation air purifier ($4980) is here to ease your worries and make sure that the air around you is virus-free. It’s the world’s first FDA-cleared air purifier proven to not only trap, but eliminate over 99.9 percent of COVID-19 within 30 minutes, effectively minimizing the chance of trapped contagions returning to the air.
Using state-of-the-art technology, this powerful machine has a five-stage filtration and disinfection mechanism that breaks down the virus’s cell membrane, getting rid of the virus for good. Want to bring clean air with you wherever you go? Get the portable version! Your friends and colleagues will love you for it.
Molekule’s air purifier ($6,440) is innovative and trendy, and it doesn’t come cheap, either. Instead of a HEPA filter, it uses a PECO filter that claims to destroy particles in the air rather than capturing them. A product endorsement by MoMA (the Museum of Modern Art) speaks volumes, as it features a cutting-edge cylinder design by veteran product designer Peter Riering-Czekalla and is crafted in machined aluminium with all-leather accents. Beautiful and deadly—just what we like.
The most expensive machine on this exhaustive list, the Austin Air HealthMate HM400 ($6,688) has one of the best performing HEPA filtrations on the market. It addresses a wide variety of air quality concerns by removing sub-micron particles, noxious gases, and chemicals. Its 360-degree intake system draws air into all sides of the HealthMate, passing it through a four-stage filter. With a three-speed control switch and all-steel exterior on easy-roll casters, this baby will clean up your air in no time at all.