Ways to Increase the Humidity in Your Home Without a Humidifier

When I lived in Texas, we welcomed the dry air of winter as a break from very humid summers. Now that I’m living in the north, the dry winter air is problematic.

Dry winter air causes discomforts and increases susceptibility to illness. Fortunately, there are a number of easy, low-tech ways to increase a home’s humidity.

We’re suffering from dry skin, irritated nasal passages (this increases the likelihood we’ll come down with a cold or flu), and frequent static shocks. We looked into purchasing a small humidifier, but instead of spending money on one and trying to find room to store it, I wanted to see if there are other approaches that might help add moisture to our air. Here’s what I discovered.

How to add humidity to your home without a humidifier

  • Use the stovetop. Cook meals on the stovetop and use a teakettle to heat water instead of a microwave. This allows you to take advantage of incidental moisture release. When you’re not cooking, you can simmer a large pot of water on the stove (add a few drops of essential oil or some lemon slices to give the air a pleasant scent). A similar alternative is to simmer water in a slow cooker.
  • Set out water. Place vases of flowers or water-filled bowls of glass beads or decorative rocks out around the house. The water will gradually evaporate into the dry air. You can speed up this process by placing water-filled metal or ceramic bowls atop radiators or heat registers.
  • Line dry clothes indoors. Moisture is released into the air as clothes line dry. A portable drying rack will allow you to easily dry clothes in various rooms of your home.
  • Shower with the door open. If you can, leave the bathroom door open while you shower so the steam can escape and add moisture to surrounding rooms. If you take baths, then don’t drain the tub when you first get out. Allow the water to add moisture to the air as it cools, then drain it. (If you have young children in the house, then pass on this last option because the standing water is a drowning risk.)
  • Get some plants. Moisture evaporates from the leaves and stems of plants in a process called transpiration. Because of this, well-watered plants add humidity to the air.

We’re going to try some of these strategies and see if they’ll help us! For additional information on adding humidity to the air in your home, visit my sources (here and here).

What do you do to add moisture to the air in your home during the dry winter months?

Shared on the following link-ups:

Living Proverbs 31, WholeHearted Wednesday, One Project at a Time, Titus 2 Tuesday, Handmade Tuesdays & Monday’s Musings.


  1. Great ideas! We used to run a humidifier and you’re right, space and cost are definitely an issue, so we stopped. And, I get stressed by white noise. Now, we’re just dry all winter from the forced air heat. I had a crock pot of water going this weekend for a tea party I hosted. I wish I had seen this before then because I would’ve maximized the leftover water and used it like a humidifier. How clever!

  2. My oldest daughter was boiling some water on the stove the other day to try to get some moisture in the house. I didn’t realize I could do the same by putting some water out like in vases of flowers; a pretty option.

  3. These are really great tips. I have a one year old who’s into everything (including the humidifier in our den), so these are fantastic and safe alternatives to battler the dry air and still keep a healthy amount of moisture in the air. Thank you for sharing 🙂

  4. Great ideas. One thing I’m working on is getting some plants. We don’t have any, and for so many reasons I want some. Now I can add another reason to my list. Thanks.

  5. Great tips! My son and I have the worst cracked dry skin during the winter months. I love the idea of simmering water with essential oils. This will help with a few issues at once :). I’ll have to try that one!

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