As an appliance tester, I was admittedly a little skeptical of the performance of air purifiers at first. I was sure that they were doing something, but I wasn’t confident on the effect, if any, it would have at home. I also had no need for one — when I was younger I luckily didn’t suffer from hay fever or allergies, so I had no need for such an expensive appliance taking up space in my tiny apartment.
However, as the years went by, one summer I noticed something had changed. I was walking to the shops to pick up my groceries and decided to take the scenic route. As I walked past my park, suddenly my eyes started to water, my nose started to run and I sneezed without cessation. I looked and felt a mess, so much so that I had to turn back. When I got indoors, things improved, but the symptoms never fully went away. To make matters worse, I started to wake in the night with an itchy tongue and a blocked nose. I Googled the symptoms and just as I thought, there it was, hay fever.
Things went from bad to worse as every year the symptoms became more severe no matter where I went. Then I moved into my first mortgaged home which was on a building site, and I never considered what that would do. The heat of summer meant there was dust everywhere, so much so that I could see it building up in my apartment whenever I opened the windows. My allergies were through the roof and medication wasn’t cutting it anymore, so I needed to take action. That’s when I decided to try an air purifier.
Dyson first arrived on the air purifier scene in 2015 and have since aggressively expanded into the category. As well as different sizes of air purifier and improved capabilities, they have combined them with other appliances such as humidifiers and heaters to create multifunctional products.
It wasn’t cheap, but desperate times called for desperate measures and so I bought a Dyson Pure Cool TP04 ($574 on Amazon). I placed it in the corner of my living room, switched it on and looked at it expectantly, like it would work a miracle. The small LCD screen immediately showed a yellow line to warn me that the air wasn’t up to scratch, and the fan started rotating around like it was on a mission. I left it to it and went about my day.
That very evening I started to notice a difference; I was sneezing less and my nose wasn’t running — it was a miracle!
I connected my Dyson air purifier to the app and looked over its charts to see what it had done. In addition to catching pollen in the air, Dyson Pure Cool TP04 had reduced VOC’s and nitrogen dioxide. I had no idea my air was so polluted! It even showed a spike where I had been cooking earlier. I decided to move the unit to the bedroom as that was where my symptoms were most annoying. I slept soundly that night and while the symptoms were not completely gone when I woke, they were definitely improved.
I left my Dyson running day and night (using the handy Night mode) and took full advantage of the Automatic setting, too, where it uses its sensors to adjust the power. While my partner doesn’t suffer from hay fever as badly, he also noticed the difference and was happy with keeping it in the bedroom.
When the pandemic hit, working from home became a necessity and I found myself carrying the Dyson air purifier from the bedroom to the home office every day. I also noticed that as soon as the Dyson moved, the quality of the air began to drop in the room it had come from. Sadly, one Dyson just couldn’t stretch to cover the entire apartment.
Being a new building, myself and my partner also noticed that the air could get quite dry now that the windows were often closed. There was a lot of static as we dressed and even when I brushed my hair. The extent of it made us nervous to touch anything metal in the bedroom for fear of static shocks.
Luckily, Dyson had just released its Dyson Humidify + Cool PH01 ($799 at Best Buy), which fit the bill perfectly. I placed it in the bedroom and set the humidity to the recommended level. Having one model at each end of our home gave the overall space the treatment it needed. We could sleep better at night and no longer had to keep a stock of tissues wherever we went. The humidifying function also worked wonders for the dry atmosphere.
I almost take the effect of these appliances for granted these days. It’s only when it crops up in conversation that I remember the impact. For instance, when my Dad visited recently, he commented that his allergies had stopped since he had been over. He too now wants to invest in a Dyson. Friends will also comment on them, asking if they work and if they’re worth it, and I always answer a resounding yes.