Your nose is amazing. It’s not a compliment, it’s true. It can detect at least one trillion distinct scents. Even fear and disgust. It’s all thanks to your scent cells, which are renewed on a monthly basis. Why? Because our sense of smell is irreplaceable. It’s a blessing that we often take for granted. Doctors however, know how important our noses are. They aren’t just meant for smelling delicious foods. Our noses provide a way to deliver all kinds of therapeutic treatments. The most common form is something called aromatherapy. As the name suggests, it basically involves using aromas or scents for therapeutic purposes. Some doctors actually prefer to use aromatherapy instead of conventional medications. That’s because most drugs are synthetic and can cause countless side effects while aromatherapy uses natural, safe ingredients from botanical sources. All you need is an essential oil that gives off the aroma you need and a diffuser. The oil is pretty straightforward. You don’t even need a doctor to tell you which oils to use. A good diffuser, however, isn’t easy to find and can be all the difference between a good, successful aromatherapy session and a complete waste of time. We’ll get to how to choose the best diffuser in a bit.
A few decades ago, aromatherapy and essential oils were considered exotic works of specialized therapists and mystics. Today, thanks to diffusers, almost anyone can give themselves an effective treatment session in the comfort of their own bedroom. But before you go out and buy something, you should know how it works, right? Well, diffusers are fairly simple. They take the essential oils you add in them and “diffuse” them into the room or environment. Does that mean all diffusers are the same? No. It’s how they diffuse or disperse the essential oils that makes one diffuser different from another. Generally, there are four types of diffusers:
- Ultrasonic diffuser
- Heat diffuser
- Evaporative diffuser
Let’s start with the most basic one. Imagine you have a pad or some sort of filter. Add some essential oil to it. Now get a fan and position it so that air from the fan starts to evaporate the essential oil. That’s exactly how an evaporative diffuser works. Most essential oils are made up of volatile substances that evaporate when they come in contact with air. It’s like when you stand in the middle of a garden or meadow and smell all the distinct odors of flowers. You actually smell their volatile oils. So are evaporative diffusers the best? Unfortunately, they have a major drawback. Most bottles of oil contain a blend of essential oils. That means that there are different compounds in the oil. Some are very light so they evaporate first, while the heavier compounds evaporate later on in the session. That means you won’t get the full benefit of your aromatherapy session unless you stay till the very last drop of essential oil to make sure those heavy compounds have been diffused.
As the name suggests, heat diffusers utilize heat. They pretty much involve the same mechanism as evaporative diffusers but instead of fans, they heat up essential oils to evaporate them and disperse the aroma. Heat diffusers have another major drawback that’s even worse than the evaporative. You’ve probably guessed it already. The heat. As important as it is for the evaporation process, the heat involved can break down and degrade important chemical compounds in the oils. Sure, some oils are thermostable, but the majority is heat sensitive. And while heat diffusers are relatively cheap, you obviously want a diffuser that works for all the different types of oils, not just a few.
Nebulizers may be the most powerful diffusers out there. They don’t need heat or fans. They have a special built-in atomizer that basically takes the essential oil and converts it from liquid form to fine airborne particles. It’s a great device for people with medical conditions and those who rely on aromatherapy as part of medical treatment. The really unique thing about nebulizers is their ease of use. You don’t need to prepare anything, just attach the bottle of essential oil and turn on the device. Super easy. That sounds like an advantage right? It’s also a disadvantage. Why? Well, it’s an advantage only if you need to diffuse a strong concentration of the oil. There’s no room for dilution with the nebulizer. You just attach the concentrated bottle and let it do its work. The problem is, while some oils are meant to be diffused in the concentrated form, most oils are supposed to be diluted first. Some oils are so strong, you can reach up to 20 fold dilution where you add only a few drops to large amounts of water. Otherwise, inhaling the concentrated oil can cause respiratory irritation and even induce an asthma attack. And besides, using the oil in its pure concentrated form will only make you run out much faster and have to keep buying more and more. In addition to all that, nebulizers are very noisy.
If heat diffusers, evaporative diffusers and nebulizers all have major disadvantages, what are we left with? Ultrasonic diffusers. They’re arguably the best diffusers out there. They even sound cool. So how do they work? At the bottom of the diffuser, there’s a small device called a transducer. Its role is to create ultrasonic vibrations. At the top of the diffuser, there’s a metal plate where you add water along with essential oils. That’s pretty much it. As soon as you turn it on, the ultrasonic vibrations start to break up the water particles along with the essential oils into tiny microparticles. These particles get blown out of the diffuser, forming a mist on their way out. And there you have it. Your aromatherapy session is ready. So what makes them better than all the others?
- There’s no heat involved so all the components of the oil stay intact.
- The ultrasonic vibrations are inaudible to humans so the diffuser works its magic in silence.
- Ultrasonic diffusers can also be useful humidifiers in the winter by turning them on with only water inside.
- Tiny micro particles make the essential oils more easily absorbed and much more therapeutic when inhaled.
- Since ultrasonic diffusers allow you to add water to the essential oils, you can easily dilute the oils to a safe, non-irritating concentration.
Now that you know ultrasonic diffusers are the best type, there’s another question you’re probably asking yourself:” which one do I get?”. Well, if you search online, you’ll find hundreds of diffusers but to make things easier, here are the best 12 diffusers and the reason they’re so unique:
1- InnoGear Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser Portable Ultrasonic Diffusers with Color LED Lights Changing and Waterless Auto Shut-off Function for Home Office Bedroom Room, 100 mL
This diffuser from Innogear is a number 1 bestseller on Amazon. It comes with 7 changing mood lights (green, dark blue, red, yellow, pink, light blue and white) that can be adjusted between bright and dim modes. This doubles as a great night light for children afraid of the dark. It can also be set to shut off automatically when all the water and essential oil has been diffused. That means you can enjoy your aromatherapy session without having to worry about turning off the device and you can even get the therapeutic benefits of the oil while you sleep! The Innogear diffuser also comes with an extra long power cord (6 feet) that makes it suitable for almost any room including the bedroom, office, baby room, spa and even yoga centers. It has three distinct working modes:
-Intermittent mist: it disperses the mist for 30 seconds and then stops for 30 seconds, doing this for up to 6 hours.
-Continuous mist: provides continuous diffusion for up to 3 hours.
URPOWER Essential Oil Diffuser 130ml Wood Grain Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Oil Diffuser with Adjustable Mist Mode Waterless Auto Shut-off humidifier and 7 Color Changing LED Lights for Home Office Baby
Another number one bestseller on Amazon. This diffuser has a slightly bigger capacity than the last, allowing up to 130ml instead of 100ml. It also has 7 adjustable LED lights including blue, pink, purple, red, yellow, green, orange and combination. Its settings are similar to the Innogear diffuser as well. There are two buttons, green and red, that allow you to toggle between intermittent and continuous mist modes. The thing that really sets URPOWER diffuser apart from the others is its external appearance. The exterior is coated with wood grain, giving it a natural look that easily blends in and even adds a nice decorative touch.
Radha Beauty Essential Oil Diffuser 7 colors – 120 ml Cool Mist Aroma Humidifier for Aromatherapy with changing Colored LED Lights, Portable, Waterless Auto Shut-off and Adjustable Mist mode
This diffuser not only has an LED lamp with 7 different colors but also allows you to either stick with one color or automatically toggle between all seven. It also gives you the option of controlling the moisture output, allowing you complete control of the room’s humidity. According to the mode you pick, it can work up to 5 hours and automatically power off when the water levels get too low. This makes the Radha diffuser one of the safest and most reliable diffusers out there.
Essential Oil Ultrasonic Aroma Diffuser – BAXIA TECHNOLOGY 100ml Cool Mist Humidifier with 8 Color LED Mood Lights for Office and Bedroom(2-PACK)
This one’s a small 5.5 inch by 3.75 inch diffuser that has 8 different LED lights. It comes in a pack of two. But that isn’t the best part. The great thing about the Baxia technology diffuser is that has a RoHS safety approval. You’ve probably never heard of it. RoHs stands for Restriction of Hazardous Substances. Basically, it regulates the entire electronics industry, including electrical products like ultrasonic diffusers. Since July 1, 2006, any applicable products in the EU market have been required to pass RoHS compliance. Having the RoHS safety approval makes this diffuser one the safest ones in the market.
URPOWER 500ml Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser Humidifier with 4 Timer Settings, 7 LED Color Changing Lamps and Waterless Auto Shut-off
This is another diffuser by URPOWER but it’s quite different from the last one. For starters, it can hold a whooping 500ml of water and essential oils! That’s almost 5 times what the average diffuser can take! The added capacity comes with a boosted life span of up to 10 hours of continuous use. This means you can spend all night in a room full of your favorite therapeutic fragrances and finally get a good night’s sleep. The URPOWER diffuser also allows you to set 60, 120, or 180-minute timers. When time’s up or when the water has been completely dispersed, it automatically shuts off on its own. When it comes to the technology behind this diffuser, it’s as advanced as it gets. The transducer produces vibrations at a frequency of 2.4 millions times per second, breaking the water and essential oils into extremely fine micro-particles. And don’t forget: the smaller the particles are, the easier they can be absorbed from your respiratory tract to give the therapeutic effect you want.
InnoGear Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser Ultrasonic Cool Mist Diffusers with 7 Color LED Lights Waterless Auto Shut-off, Wood Grain, 200 mL
This is another diffuser by Innogear. It’s considered a medium size diffuser, since it has a capacity of 200ml. So if 100ml diffusers are too small and you don’t want the large 500ml ones, this is the diffuser for you. It has 2 mist modes (high and low), 7 different LED colors with adjustable brightness and 4 time settings (1hr/3hrs/6hrs/steady on). And to top it all off, its natural wood grain exterior makes it a nice decorative touch.
InnoGear USB Car Essential Oil Diffuser Air Refresher Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Diffusers with 7 Colorful LED lights for Office Travel Home Vehicle
Perhaps the most innovative diffuser by Innogear yet is their car diffuser. Who says aromatherapy has to be confined to your home? We’re always on a tight schedule with barely any time for lunch, let alone an aromatherapy session. That’s why it’s a brilliant idea to have a diffuser that fits into your car’s cupholder and operates through its USB port. It’s easy to use with simple one-button commands that ensure you can adjust the settings you want without getting distracted. And the best part? It comes with all the handy features of the regular diffusers like intelligent auto off, intermittent/continuous mist modes and full LED light control.
ArtNaturals Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser – (150 ml Tank) – Ultrasonic Aroma Humidifier – Adjustable Mist Mode, Auto Shut-Off and 7 Color LED Lights – For Home, Office, Bedroom and Baby
Another great diffuser with an exterior wood grain appearance similar to Innogear. It holds up to 150ml of water and oil and has all the basic diffuser functions.
2017 ASAKUKI 500ml Premium, Essential Oil Diffuser, 5 In 1 Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Fragrant Oil Vaporizer Humidifier, Purifies The Air, Timer and Auto-Off Safety Switch, 7 LED Light Colors
The Asakuki diffuser is another one of those big 500ml diffusers. The most impressive thing about it is that it’s made from ultra-high grade, safe and eco-friendly PP materials. These materials are the same ones used in manufacturing baby bottles. They also incorporate state-of-the-art production processes and strict quality control which means they take safety and reliability to a whole new level.
Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser, Soft Digits 120ml Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifier / Aroma Diffuser with Adjustable Mist Mode, 7 LED Colors and Waterless Auto Shut-Off for Bedroom, Nursery or Desk
Another great high-tech diffuser with continuous/intermittent mist modes, mood-enhancing lights and auto shut-off. It’s perfect for your nightstand.
InnoGear Real Bamboo Essential Oil Diffuser Ultrasonic Aromatherapy Diffusers with 14 LED Colorful Lights and Waterless Auto Shut-off
Innogear just keeps making it harder to choose a diffuser. This time, they designed an elegant, natural outer shell for their diffuser and crafted it from exotic bamboo wood. They also made sure all the materials they used were safe, eco-friendly and BPA-free. In case you haven’t heard of it, BPA is short for bisphenol-A. This chemical is commonly used in plastics and has been proven to have an estrogen-like structure, which means it can cause a disturbance in your hormones. Luckily, Innogear doesn’t use BPA in its diffuser so your hormones levels are safe.
12- SmartMist Aromatherapy Essential Oil Diffuser – Modern Wood Finish, Auto Shut-off, LED Lights, 3 Mist Settings for Aroma – Ultrasonic Cool Air Purifier Humidifier for Room
Appearance-wise, this might be the best diffuser out of all 12. It has a sleek, modern design; a wood grain finish with chrome; and an overall sculptural elegance that makes it seem as part of the décor rather than a diffuser. It has all the features of the previous diffusers such as automatic shut-off, adjustable LED lights and different mist settings. It’s even BPA free! You can choose between 2 available colors: espresso and golden oak.
Those are the best 12 ultrasonic diffusers out of the hundreds you’ll find online. You don’t have to be sick to go out and get one. Aromatherapy isn’t only for treating health conditions. It’s for relaxing, releasing stress and improving your immunity and circulation. Dry cough, sinus irritation and fatigue are all powerless against the right essential oils. And don’t forget, diffusers can do much more than make your room smell good. Use them as humidifiers to get rid of dry, chapped skin on those cold winter nights. Or use them as air purifiers to cover up the smell of pets and get rid of dust, allergens and microorganisms. No matter what, you’ll always find a use for diffusers and they will definitely make your life easier. So choose one that suits your needs and let those ultrasonic vibrations show you the way!