Here’s Something I Like (Not That Anyone Asked): My Fucking Humidifier

Hi, I’m Mary, and this is my column no one asked for about things I like!

Geting steamy with my favorite bedtime companion

Who was I before you? I have nothing but a vague memory of dry skin and sinus infections, of waking up parched, my head aching, my small hands as rough as sandpaper. Then you came along, and suddenly everything changed. Oh humidifier—where would I be without you? Who would I be?

I’d be miserable, that’s what. And sick with yet another sinus infection.

OK, I’ll cut the sappy shit and get to it: I fucking love my fucking humidifier. If you don’t have one, get one immediately. IMMEDIATELY! Even if you live in the tropics it will change your life, I swear. It’s the best $40 I’ve ever spent (thrice), and I’d spend it again and again and again, gladly.

This story, like many of mine, begins long ago, when I was in college (so actually not that long ago because I’m very young). That’s when I started getting sinus infections all the damn time, though since I was a complete fucking idiot in college, I didn’t realize that’s what was happening. I remember once, at the end of a spring semester, I had a terrible sinus infection for three weeks before I realized what was wrong. I finally talked to my dad and he was like bitch! Your sinuses are infected as hell!

After college, I moved to Atlanta, where I developed allergies (to pollen and shit like that, but mostly to Atlanta, I think). I started taking Claritin during the spring and fall and it helped, but I still got occasional sinus infections.

As with most major changes in my life, the real transformation in my moisture level came when I moved to New York. I arrived in December of 2010 which, as you may remember, was a particularly brutal winter in the northeast, and soon I began to experience some…issues. In Atlanta, I’d been able to control the heat (and more importantly the air conditioning) in my apartment, but no one in the entire history of New York City has ever or will ever be able to do that. Like every resident of this big ass city, I found myself at the mercy of my landlord, who would crank the heat up and turn it off seemingly at random, the only constant being that no matter the temperature in my apartment, I was dry as a bone. (Aren’t bones actually pretty wet if they’re still inside of you? Hm.)

Eventually I realized that DUH. I needed to get a goddamn humidifier! So I went to Target and got a Vick’s Warm Mist Humidifier for about $30-$40 and I’m not exaggerating when I say it completely changed my entire fucking life. Suddenly I wasn’t waking up with sinus pain every morning! My skin wasn’t flaking off my beautiful fucking face! My hands weren’t shriveling up like Madonna’s presumably are underneath all those fingerless gloves!

OOOOH BABY that’s what I like

I was so pleased with my new steam machine that I got the very same one for my bedroom at my parents’ house, which is quite possibly the driest place on Earth. I used to get a sinus infection every time I visited my dad, but my humidifier solved that problem. It solves every problem. I’m pretty sure my humidifier is going to singlehandedly help me figure out how to make money in comedy.

My humidifier and I have been together for about six years now, but I recently realized it was time to put the old girl down and get a new one. For the past three weeks, I’ve been dogsitting in Manhattan (ahem!), and I didn’t think to bring my humidifier with me. I was OK for the first couple of nights because it was pretty warm outside, but then the polar vortex hit and I found myself in a strange apartment with sinus pressure and patches of dry skin on my delicate visage. I’ve known for a while that I needed to replace my humidifier because it no longer works on the high setting, which is how I prefer to use it. I want my air to be MOIST.

So I went to the Rite Aid across the street from the West Village apartment I’m staying in (where I have, in my short time on the block, purchased many vagina-related products and also one half gallon of cashew milk) to see what they had to offer. I found my beloved humidifier — for $70! Now, I’ll be the first to say that my humidifier is worth $70, but why pay that when I can get it for half the price on Amazon? I know Amazon is an evil corporation that’s well on its way to ruling us all but damn, I can’t resist those deals! So I went ahead and ordered this angelic product from that devilish company for my home in Brooklyn and took my old one to the apartment where I’m dogsitting. Whenever I’m in the apartment, I let it slowly, quietly fill the air with moisture. It’s made a huge difference, not only for me but for Donnie, the dog I’m sitting, who walked into the kitchen the other day and said, “Yo, that humidifier has my fur feeling SO soft.”

When I leave this apartment and move back home next week, I’m going to throw out the old humidifier. Our years together have been the dampest and best of my life, and I owe it so much, but it’s time to move on. After all the work it’s done for me, it’s tired and broken and rusty, and I need to let it go.

So I’ll leave it in the dumpster and I’ll go home knowing that a shiny new humidifier awaits me, eager to be cranked all the way up to high, to fill my bedroom air with a soothing moisture guaranteed to get me through another long, hard New York City winter (and spring, and fall. Hell, sometimes I even use my humidifier in the summer, if I’m feeling crazy!).

When I pitched this column to Ginny (and by pitched, I mean I said, “Ginny, I think I’m going to write a dumb column for no reason” and she said, “Cool!”), I told her it was going to be a beauty column. I’ve…deviated from that topic, but trust me when I say this is the most beauty-related installment so far. Without my humidifier, I’m just another cranky bitch with dry skin. With it, I’m as gorgeous as the warm mist emanating from my small but mighty machine, filling the arid atmosphere with enough moisture to make even the coldest January night survivable. JK but my skin would legit fall off my body by March without my humidifier, so it’s my number one beauty essential, hands down.

As always, I’d like to clarify that this is NOT a sponsored post. I received nothing for it except the sweet release of writing about the thing that means most to me in the whole entire world (still talking about my humidifier). Still, if anyone is reading and ever wants to give me literally anything for free, whether it’ll hydrate me or not, I WILL TAKE IT!!!!!!

Anyway, I hope this was helpful. I’ll be back with more unsolicited recommendations soon!

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