A desktop air purifier might seem like just a nice-to-have little gadget. Sort of like your novelty mug, or a desk toy given to you by your Secret Santa. That is, until you consider this—you may spend around 90,000 hours of your life there! If that makes you wonder just what you’re breathing in, you’re not alone. Sales of desk air purifiers have increased in recent years, both for work-from-home warriors and those in offices.
But with so many desktop air purifiers out there, how can you pick the perfect one for you? Breathe easy, dear reader—below, we’ve rounded up reviews for some of the top desk air purifiers out there.
All About Air Purifiers
Just what does an air purifier do? These devices use both filtration and advanced air cleaning technologies to remove pollutants, such as toxins, dust, allergens, and odor particles from the air. That leaves your air fresher, cleaner, and safer to breathe.
How a particular desk air filter does this can change. Some filters rely on a fan and one or several filters. This fan pulls the air through the filter, trapping fine particles inside. Others might neutralize or ionize these harmful particles, while not filtering the air at all. Some brands can even trap or kill harmful airborne bacteria.
What to Look For in a Desktop Air Purifier
When shopping for a desk air purifier, you have a lot of options out there. It can be confusing to know where to start. To find the best desktop air purifier for your desk, there are a few things you should consider:
- Room Size: Air purifiers are not a one-size-fits-all device. To be sure you’re getting the benefits of clean air, you should make sure that your desk air filter can handle your space, without being overkill. Determine the square footage of your room or office to make an informed and reasonable choice.
- Square Footage = Length (ft) x Width (ft) Ex. — 12 x 20 = 240 sq. ft.
- ACH Rating: As you shop for the best desk air filter, you might come across the ACH rating. Standing for “Air Changes per Hour,” the ACH rating measures how many times your device will purify the air volume in your room each hour. For example, a desktop air purifier with an ACH value of 4x will cycle the air 4 times. The higher this number, the more efficient the device, and cleaner your air will be.
- HEPA Filters vs. The Rest: Known as the ‘gold-standard’ for air filters, HEPA stands for High Efficiency Particulate Air [filter]. It is an efficiency standard carefully monitored by the Environmental Protection Agency, and other government groups. To be named a HEPA filter, a filter must remove 99.97% of particles from the air, and anything above 0.3 microns. For some comparison, one of your hairs is a HUGE 70 microns thick. Many cheaper products try to cash in on this quality by using “HEPA-like,” or “HEPA-type filter,”—but don’t be fooled. When shopping for your desktop HEPA air purifier, always look for the true HEPA designation. With regular changes, these strong filters will keep your air clean and clear.
- Other Features: Think about what is important to you in your desk air filter. Would you like to be able to set a timer? Connect your air filter to your smartphone? How about a nightlight, or a super-quiet fan? Make sure your purchase is the best desk air purifier for your needs.
Desktop Air Purifier Reviews
This popular, powerful unit can handle even larger spaces (325+ sq. ft.), and it does it quietly, with multi-stage filtration at whisper-quiet levels. Reviewers appreciate the easy access to change filters and multiple fan settings, along with the ability to convert from a floor to desktop air purifier. Heavier and more expensive than some of other options, it remains a solid, dependable choice.Check Price Now
The first thing you’ll notice about the Molekule Air Mini+ is the futuristic, minimalist design. This device uses some futuristic technology, like a smartphone connection and something called Photo Electrochemical Oxidation (PECO). The Molekule Air Mini+ uses powerful light to break down and destroy pollutants, bacteria, and more at a molecular (get it?) level. But these good looks and impressive stats don’t come cheap—the Molekule Air Mini+ is by far the most expensive air filter on this list.
Don’t be fooled by the ‘square’ appearance—this is a pretty cool little air purifier. A 3-stage filter removes air particles, and reviewers appreciate the super-quiet 28db level and added Sleep Mode. This one tops out at around 160 sq. ft., so be sure it can keep up with you. At the middle of our price range, it may be worth a look.Check Price Now
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Small enough to fit into a cup holder, this is definitely a portable air purifier. Reviewers like the small size, ease of use, and the multiple color options—perfect if you’re into more than just black or white. There are 7 different fan speeds, so adjusting is easy, though some found the higher speeds just too loud on this moderately priced desk air filter.
At just 1.2 lbs., this is the smallest desk air purifier on this list. Truly portable, the PuriCare Mini recharges with a USB for up to 8 hours of runtime. The controls are simple, and this desk air filter can be connected to a smartphone app for even more features. These features don’t come cheap, however, as this little filter has a bigger price tag than most on our list, and reviewers have questions about finding replacement filters.Check Price Now
The KOIOS provides 360° of airflow for your space, along with an easy-to-use 1-touch operation. Reviewers like this affordable purifier’s included nightlight function, but some found it to be too noisy, too weak to clean their space, or both.Check Price Now
Weighing just 2.2 lbs., this mini air purifier could be perfect for your small workspace. With a USB-C and one-button operation, this is a straightforward, minimalist solution. Affordable and small, it could have issues with spaces over ~110 sq. ft., and reviewers have had issues with it’s unique replacement filters.Check Price Now
This air purifier from Germ Guardian uses multiple stages to purify your office air. Passing through a charcoal pre-filter, then a true HEPA filter, the air finally passes a UV-C light designed to kill airborne germs and viruses. It is one of the more expensive desk air purifiers listed here, though reviewers are generally satisfied.Check Price Now
Find the Best Desktop Air Purifier for YOU
With many different models available, you’re sure to find a desktop air purifier right for you. For overall performance and noticeably cleaner air, the Veva 8000 Elite Pro Series is a dependable choice. If you’re looking for a blend of form and function, the LEVOIT Air Purifier is sure to be a standout. And if your desk (and you!) can move around a lot, the LG PuriCare Mini is a great option for work or play even on the go. Whichever model you choose, you’re sure to enjoy cleaner, fresher air with your desktop air purifier.