The History of the Air Purifier – 11 Steps to Modern Day

Updated October 2020

The first-ever air purifiers similar to those that they sell today happened in 1963 with the release of first commercial unit by the Incen Air Company which was headed up by Manfred and Klaus Hammes in Germany. This company was the precursor to the very respected IQair corporation.

But the idea of a gadget that can clean the air you breath has been put down to paper since 1854.

The following list is all based upon existing patents and also include relevant diagrams.

1. The Stenhouse gas mask, 1854

A chemist by trade, John Stenhouse began experimenting with charcoal filters as an air purifier as early as the 1850’s.  The unit he devised called for wire gauze “filters”, which held powdered charcoal as the filtering ingredient. His findings led to the invention of the gas mask, used in London factories as a personal “air purifier” to protect workers from toxic gas.

Source

2. Carbon Filtering – 1862

The carbon filter was invented in 1862 and was originally used to purify water.  Its transition into an air purifier occurred in 1872 when Allen and Alvin E. Rice advanced the technology by creating a 2 stage filtration based on activated carbon.  In modern-day, air purifiers built around the carbon filter are used to purge the air of vapors, odors, and hydrocarbons… as well as the basis of today’s spacesuit breathing system.

Source

3. Barton’s respirators, c. 1874

Barton's respirators

In 1874, Samuel Barton filed for a patent for the canister gas mask… one of the most advanced air purifiers of the time. Air impurities were lifted as the user inhaled through a tri-layer filtering system, which was strapped to the face via head harness and face cover. The invention also included a revolutionary air recycling system, whereby clean air was cycled through a secondary filter to remove carbon dioxide.

Source

4. Air Purifier For Refrigerators – 1899

This was one of the first patents for a commercial air purifier similar to what we see today but this one works for the refrigerator and uses a carbon filter to remove odors.

It probably became less of an issue as refrigerators became more powerful and capable of staying at lower temperatures for a long period – so no rot = no smell.

The patent has now lapsed so maybe there is room for an air purifier for the refridgerator for those of us who just plain forget to throw our food away.

Source

5. First Vacuum – 1901

While riding the train, Hubert Cecil Booth began breathing dust laden air through a handkerchief during a moment of inspiration.  The moment spurred Booth on to the 1901 invention of “Puffing Billy”, the world’s first vacuum cleaner. The unit ran on an oil engine and is a precursor for more advanced air purifier systems.

Source

6. First Air Conditioner – 1906

Patents #808 and #897 are the soil from which today’s air conditioner bloomed.  By using centrifugal force and a complex system of filters and coolants, Carrier (the unit’s inventor) birthed a robust air purifier and cooling system.  Not only did his invention purify air and control temperature, but it also curbed humidity and manipulated air circulation.

Source

7. Electrostatic Precipitator – 1908

Electrostatic Precipitator

Dr. Frederick G. Cottrell invented the electrostatic precipitator, a device which created and collected charged particles. Cottrell’s apparatus found use in smelting factories and vineyards, where sulfuric acid and lead oxide fumes which once polluted the air could be collected and eliminated. The technology evolved to become a key component in publically-marketed air purifier units.

Source

8. The First Personal Air Purifier – 1914

Garret Morgan filed for patent in 1914, having invented a device that resembles the mask of an ancient scuba diving suit.  A long tube runs from the mask down to the floor, sitting below lighter-than-air gases. The filter in the “air purifier” itself mimics the body’s mucous membrane, cleansing inhaled air by running it through a wet sponge lining. And what does a user do when the gas is heavier than air? Elevate the tube above the gas…

Source

9. HEPA – Filters – 1940’s

The USA Atomic Energy Commission invented the HEPA filter during the Manhattan Project, seeing a need for a system to clean air contaminated with radioactive particles.  After World War 2, the HEPA filter was released to the public and is now used by air purifier companies as a heavy-duty filtration device.

Source

10. Rufus Stokes  – Air Factory Purification Device, 1968

400px-Rufus_Stokes_Patent

Rufus Stokes invented the “clean air machine”, a device used on smoke stacks to clean the emissions.  His invention drastically reduced the amount of ash and gases that made it beyond the stacks, leaving behind virtually transparent releases.  The boost in air quality improved the health of people, plants and animals living in the vicinity of commercial furnaces and power plants.

Source

11. NASA Space Air Cleaner Laser – 2004

clean_me_earth

In an invention that sounds like something out of Star Wars, NASA created the Low-Temperature Oxidation Catalyst (LTOC) in 2004.  LTOC began as a method for lasers to control carbon monoxide in space.  Now, researchers are finding applications for air purification on Earth, using the tech in automobile catalytic converters.

Source

16 Houseplants You Can Use as Air Purifiers

Updated 19th April 2020

Here are 16 plants that could clean your air for just the price of a few drops of water each day.

First lets check some of the evidence behind the claim that plants can purify your household air:

1. NASA Research

A NASA research document came to the conclusion that “house plants can purify and rejuvenate air within our houses and workplaces, safeguarding us all from any side effects connected with prevalent toxins such as formaldehyde, ammonia and also benzene.”

Here are the results of the NASA research study:

  Common name Scientific name Score
1 Areca palm Chrysalidocarpus lutescens 8.5
2 Lady palm Rhapis excelsa 8.5
3 Bamboo palm Chamaedorea seifrizii 8.4
4 Rubber plant Ficus robusta 8.0
5 Dracaena “Janet Craig” Dracaena deremensis “Janet Craig” 7.8
6 English ivy Hedera helix 7.8
7 Dwarf date palm Phoenix roebelinii 7.8
8 Ficus Alii Ficus macleilandii “Alii” 7.7
9 Boston fern Nephrolepis exalta “Bostoniensis” 7.5
10 Peace lily Spathiphyllum sp. 7.5

Source

2. Interior Plants: Their Influence on Airborne Microbes inside Energy-efficient Buildings

In another study made in 1996, a bedroom with no plants had 50% more colonies of airborne microbes than a room which contained houseplants.

microbe removal using plantsSource

3. Foliage Plants For Indoor Removal of The Primary Combustion Gases Carbon Monoxide and Nitrogen Dioxide

During a laboratory experiment in 1985, Dr. Wolverton PHD compared the removal of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide using a sealed chamber of spider plants.

nitrogen and co2 removal using plants Source

4. Dr Wolverton – Formaldehyde removal experiment

In another laboratory study by Dr. Wolverton PHD, he compared a number of house plants at removing formaldehyde from a sealed chamber. Formaldehyde is a common household toxin that is released from a variety of household items.

Removal of Formaldehyde from Sealed Chambers for Plants Grown in Potting Soil

CommonNameBotanical NameRemoval Rate*(Micrograms/Hour)
Boston fernNephrolepis exaltata “Bostoniensis”1863
Dwarf date palmPhoenix roebelenii1385
Bamboo palmChamaedorea seifrizii1350
Janet CraigDracaena deremensis “Janet Craig”1328
English ivyHedera helix1120
Weeping figFicus benjamina940
Peace lilySpathiphyllum “Clevelandii”939
Areca palmChrysalidocarpus lutescens938
Corn plantDracaena fragrans “Massangeana”938
Lady palmRhapis excelsa876

Source.5

With reference to the experiments of Dr Wolverton and the NASA experiments, I have compiled a list of 15 house plants that provide the greatest level of air purification.

1. Areca Palm Tree

Areca Palm Tree
The ultimate “plant air purifier” according to NASA

Costa Farms Areca Butterfly Palm Tree, Live Indoor Plant, 3 to 4-Feet Tall, Ships in Grow Pot, Fresh From Our Farm, Excellent Gift
  • Do not recommend shipping to states currently experiencing extreme cold weather/temperatures.
  • I can adapt to full sun or light shade, but bright indirect sunlight is the best!
  • Place me on your patio to create a topical paradise!
  • I love regular watering's, keep me damp, but not muddy
  • We're unable to ship this item to: AK,AZ,CA,GU,HI

The Areca palm tree is the very best air purifying plant according to the ratings from NASA’s research and has the 8th highest removal rate for Formaldehyde according to Dr Wolverton’s data. This house plant was referred to as “the most effective air humidifier” by MetaEfficient.com. The Areca has the ability to  maintain your office or home moist throughout dry periods as well as continually removing chemical toxins from your air. In the course of the winter season, it’s so effective at putting moisture back in the air that you could switch off your electric humidifiers!

2. Lady Palm

Lady Palm

American Plant Exchange Lady Palm Rhapis Excelsa Indoor/Outdoor Air Purifier Live Plant, 6" Pot
  • A graceful palm for gardens or a beautiful addition to an indoor space.
  • Adds an elegant and graceful tropical effect to any home.
  • Slow growing, bamboo-like clustering trunk pattern.
  • Wonderful in large pots and containers.
  • Nasa clean air study discovered Rhapis Excelsa to be one of the Best houseplants at cleansing the air of formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene and toluene.

This house plant – Lady palm (or Rhapis excelsa) achieved exactly the same rating as the Areca Palm tree in NASA’s research. This adaptable house plant, can be stored in dry or moist parts of the world ( between 20-100° Fahrenheit) and is particularly resistant to the majority sorts of plant insects.

The Lady Palm is not the most effective at removing Formaldehyde so if this is a concern then i would suggest you look at another plant.

Read more…

3. Bamboo Palm

Bamboo Palm

Costa Farms Clean Air-O2 For You Live House Plant Collection 4-Pack, Assorted Foliage, 4-Inch, Green
  • Is this a gift? Please choose "this is a gift" at check out to add a personalized message.
  • The Costa Farms Clean Air Plant Collection includes four plants from a grower’s choice assortment of small foliage plants. See image description of possible varieties that may be included; plants are selected by our expert growers based on seasonal availability.
  • The O2 for You Clean air Plant collection are the most efficient plants around to filter indoor pollutants, allowing us to breathe clean air in our homes and offices, according to NASA studies
  • Care varies from plant to plant, in general place the plants in a bright room and water weekly
  • Height at shipping is ranges from 10-15 Inches tall, measured from the bottom of the pot to the top of the plant

The bamboo palm was the third most powerful plant at removing formaldehyde from the air. It ranked third in the NASA experiment so is a good all rounder at keeping your room air clean. This house plant will grow best in a moist but not wet soil and in direct sunlight. However this palm will require lots of room to grow, so it might not be the best option if want this plant to sit on your desk.

Read more…

4. Boston Fern

Boston Fern

Costa Farms Boston Fern, Nephrolepis exaltata, Live Plant, 2-Feet Tall and Wide, Ships in Grow Pot with Hanger, Fresh From Our Farm, Excellent Gift
  • EASY CARE! Water Boston Fern to keep soil consistently moist. If the soil dries out, the fronds may turn brown and crispy. Never allow the soil to become saturated. Boston Ferns enjoy high humidity, so give it a good misting.
  • LOVES INDOOR LIGHT: Boston Fern loves bright to medium light; do not place in direct sun.
  • BONUS! A HANGING POT: Boston Fern is grown with care by the horticultural experts at Costa Farms and shipped in a 10-inch black hanging pot, ready to adorn your home. Just hang it up and admire it or remove hanger and place on a plant stand.
  • REAP HEALTH BENEFITS: Studies show that Boston Fern helps cleanse indoor air, removing toxins such as toluene and xylene. Plus, leafy green plants improve your mood and reduce stress.
  • ENJOY LIVING HOME DÉCOR: Boston Fern is a voluptuous, easy-care fern that grows well indoors as well as on porches and patios. Its arching branches covered with soft, emerald-green fronds ship at min. of 20-in. tall. Keep for yourself or give as a gift!

The Boston fern was the most effective plant at removing Formaldehyde and removed significantly more per hour than the rest of plants examined.

Studies have also shown that the Boston fern will also eliminate heavy metals, such as mercury and arsenic from the soil.

Source

5. Rubber Plant

Rubber Plant

Burgundy Rubber Tree Plant - Ficus - an Old Favorite - 6" Pot
  • Easy to grow house plant
  • Great for the house, apartment, office or dorm
  • Provide bright, indirect or artificial light
  • Trim as needed
  • The plant you will receive is growing in a 6" pot

This rubber house plant (Ficus robusta) has been mentioned as one of the leading Twenty plants by Doctor. B.C. “Bill” Wolverton’s “50 Houseplants That Purify Your Home Or Office.” This rubber house plant provides moisture, eliminates bio effluents, takes away volatile organic compounds as well as suppresses air based microorganisms as soon as it’s put into a room

As time passes this rubber plant will become much more skilled at eliminating toxic compounds present in the air. Bacteria within the rubber plants leaves break up the toxins and also feast on them. The procedure subsequently emits clean air in to the surrounding environment. Since the plant grows, these microorganisms increase.

This increased number of bacteria assist the rubber house plant in becoming progressively more effective at extracting further toxic compounds from the air.

6. Janet Craig – Dracaena

Janet Craig Dracaena

No products found.

The Dracaena (or Dracaena deremensis) places fifth on NASA’s ranking with a 7.8 score.  According to data it can remove Formaldehyde, at a rate of 1,328 micrograms per hour. It also removes Xylene, at a rate of 154 micrograms per hour according to http://www.earthwitchery.com/pollution.html

Recommended Placement in Home: These are especially effective in newly carpeted or newly furnished rooms were formaldehyde levels are at the highest.

Tips to keep this plant healthy:

  • Favours vibrant light, although not direct sunlight.
  • Water completely through early spring through the winter season and allow the plant’s soil to dry out in between watering

7. English Ivy

English Ivy

American Plant Exchange Easy Care English Ivy California Trailing Vine Live Plant, 6" Pot, Indoor/Outdoor Air Purifier
  • The English ivy plant is a classic, fan-shaped, Silver green ivy.
  • Makes a wonderful, bright light houseplant. It will grow long and lush, bringing a bit of the outdoors inside.
  • Easy to grow, self-clinging vine that is great for baskets, containers, climbing walls, as a ground-cover, enhancing container plantings and spilling over planter boxes.
  • English ivy helps in reducing indoor air pollution and certain allergens from the house like molds and other fungus growth. It also removes airborne fecal matter from pets and formaldehyde from household cleaning products.

If your air flow in your geographical area has got stagnant and dried out, English ivy (also known as Hedera helix) may be just the solution! WebMD.com talks about this effervescent house plant as “a solution for allergic reactions” observing that sixty percent of air based mold within the space was removed after just six hrs right after English ivy had been introduced.

People that have allergies, asthma, or even the desire to inhale cleaner, more fresh air might be wise to give this English ivy plant a shot!

8. Date Palm Tree

Date Palm Tree

Although it does not position at the top of the purifying scale when compared to  it’s three palm relatives, make no mistake: this Date palm house plant (also known as Phoenix roebelinii) remains an extremely efficient and stylish looking method to both cheer up the design of an area and reduce the content level of volatile organic compounds floating all over the air.

The Date house plant is very effective at getting rid of formaldehyde thus works great in combination with other purifier plants (has the second highest removal rate after the fern plant.)

9. Ficus Alii

Ficus Alii

Brighter Blooms Benjamina Ficus Tree, 2-3 Ft. - The Easiest to Grow Ficus | Indoors or Outside | Low Maintenance | No Shipping to AZ
  • NO SHIPPING TO ARIZONA: Benjamina Ficus trees cannot be shipped to AZ due to federal agricultural restrictions. If you live in Arizona and order this tree, your order will be cancelled.
  • PERFECT SIZE FOR INTERIOR DESIGN: This 2-3 Ft. tree will not be mature on arrival, but it will become an instant focal point for any indoor or outdoor space.
  • DELIVERY- your ficus plants may arrive a little more dry than you expected since they've traveled across the country. Please unpack them and give them a healthy drink. They will perk right back up. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us immediately.
  • GROWING DIRECTIONS: Upon arrival, your new Benjamina Ficus Tree will benefit from a healthy drink of water, and continue to water regularly 2-3 times a week.
  • HAPPY & HEALTHY GUARANTEE: If for any reason you are not completely satisfied with your Benjamina Ficus Tree or with our service, please notify us immediately or within 30 days of receipt. We will correct the situation to your satisfaction.

This ficus alii (also known as the Ficus macleilandii) isn’t as strong in it’s pollutant-removing effectiveness as, say, a rubber plant, however it remains an excellent addition to any kind of office or home wherever clear air is missing. Although they aren’t terribly difficult to look after, PlantCareGuru.com alerts to us that hand protection ought to be used whilst dealing with the house plant for those who have latex allergic reactions.

 

10. Peace Lilly

Peace Lilly

Peace Lily Clean air Plant Friendship Foliage's Family Farm Quality Live Indoor Spathiphyllum (6" Pot, 14-18in Tall from Bottom of The Pot)
  • CANNOT SHIP TO CALIFORNIA or ARIZONA due to state policies
  • Grown by family owned and operated nursery
  • Blooms year-round
  • Cleans, purifies, and removes toxins from the air
  • Easy to care for

The Peace Lily (also known as Spathiphyllum sp.) is a perfect air purifier plant for those who don’t have green fingers. Peace Lilies are often found in malls because they are so easy to grow.

If you scared you might kill your new house plant then I recommend you go for this one.

11. Aloe Vera

Aloe Vera

Costa Farms Aloe Vera Live Indoor Plant Ships in Grow Pot, 10-Inch Tall, 2-Pack
  • Is this a gift? Please choose "this is a gift" At check out to add a personalized message
  • The Aloe Vera plant is known for its cool Gel inside of its thick, toothed leaves
  • Great addition to modern and contemporary decor; Perfect for desks, tabletops, credenza cabinets, and more
  • These sun-lovers grow best in a sunny window. Drought tolerant, only needs water once every two to three weeks
  • Height at shipping is approximately 10 Inches tall, measured from the bottom of the pot to the top of the plant

Aloe vera was proven to be a lot more effective at the elimination of formaldehyde at lesser concentrations when compared with Philodendrons. Aloe vera is likewise famous as being a healing plant acknowledged for its therapeutic qualities, giving it the majority of its nicknames.

Andrea-plant-air-purifier-aloe

The Aloe house plant was also used in the initial photography used for the Andrea plant air purifier – probably due to the plants purification properties.

12. Spider Plants

Spider Plants

The spider plant was used by Dr Wolverton in his 1985 study that examined the plant’s removal of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide. In a room with many spider plants, the amount of carbon monoxide and nitrogen dioxide dropped to near zero after only 24 hours.

Source

13. Chrysanthemum

Chrysanthemum

Aster Seeds 30Pcs Chrysanthemum Annual Outdoor Flower Garden Seeds Callistephus Chinensis Pink (Pink)
  • 🌺our China Aster seeds will begin germinating in as little as 7 to 10 days after sowing. The plants will mature to a height of roughly 12 to 36 inches tall and can be spaced about 12 to 18 inches apart.
  • 🌺China Asters make a wonderful cut flower and can be seen in many floral arrangements and bouquets as well.
  • 🌺hey will also attract an array of beneficial insects to the garden, such as butterflies, bumblebees, hummingbirds and ladybugs.
  • 🌺China Aster seeds will grow best in an area that consists of full sunlight to light shade.
  • 🌺To increase drainage, we recommend adding a light compost to areas containing hard, compact soil. Provide moisture when the soil becomes dry, until germination occurs.

This particularly attractive house plant was shown to be effective at removing the VOC compound – benzene which has been known to cause cancer.

Many tobacco products contain high levels of benzene so it would be helpful to have one of these plants in a smoking household. However no house plant can ever negate the effects of tobacco smoke.

Remember to be careful with Chrysanthemum as it is poisonous when ingested or with prolonged skin exposure.

14. Heart leaf philodendron

Heart leaf philodendron

The N.A.S.A. study showed that the Philodendron house plant was one of the best house plant for elimination formaldehyde from the surrounding air, especially when working with higher concentrations.

15. Snake Plants or Mother of Law Tongue

snake-plant-purifier

Snake Plant, Mother-In-Law's Tongue - Sanseveria - 6" Pot/unique-from jmbamboo
  • 10-12'' inch live plant.Extremely hardy house plant, difficult to kill
  • Commonly called Snake Plants or Mother-in-law's Tongue
  • In China, it was kept as a treasured houseplant because the Eight Gods bestowed their eight virtues on those who grew them
  • Will grow in dime light, water when dry
  • The plant you will receive is growing in a 6" pot

Snake house plants — these types of plants tend to be incredible growers and also extremely tough. They’re excellent at eliminating the majority of toxins plus they are quite happy to grow in areas where other plants may decline and perish ( say for example a hot window ledge). Also, they are great bathroom and darker area plants.

16. Sago Palm Air Purifier

Snake Plant, Mother-In-Law's Tongue - Sanseveria - 6" Pot/unique-from jmbamboo
  • 10-12'' inch live plant.Extremely hardy house plant, difficult to kill
  • Commonly called Snake Plants or Mother-in-law's Tongue
  • In China, it was kept as a treasured houseplant because the Eight Gods bestowed their eight virtues on those who grew them
  • Will grow in dime light, water when dry
  • The plant you will receive is growing in a 6" pot

There is a large number of air-purifying palms on this list for good reason and the sago palm was a great plant for cleaning the air.

One Final Point:

Make sure to Maintain your house plants in a good condition and make sure you have enough of them. The NASA research advised that there should be a six inch plant for every 100 sq feet of interior living space

A Note About Pets:

As noted by a number of readers, many of the plants on this list can also be poisonous to dogs and other pets. Be sure to check for any potential poison or allergies from the plants for your animal and try to put plants in locations that pets can not reach.

If you do have pets, make sure you check out the recently updated list of our recommended purifiers for pets as these in combination with a combination of these 15 plants on this list can allow pet owners to live without the fear of allergic reactions.

10 Examples of Dirty Window Art in 2020

Updated 2020

Scott Wade creates awesome art from the dust and dirt that most of us spend all our time to remove.

I originally put together this list back in 2010 and so recently had a chance to add more examples of this “dirty art.”

I love the impermanence that comes with this format.

Tomorrows art is quickly dashed away with the swipe of the windscreen wipers.

Scroll down to see all 10:

1. Mona Lisa

Leonardo da Vinci, eat your heart out.  Scott Wade has recreated Mona Lisa’s ambiguous smile with nothing more than a dirty car and an idle finger.

2. Girl With a Pearl Earring

“Wash Me” is so 1999.  Instead, Scott Wade spends his time recreating masterpieces. In this photo, a Mazda 3 gets to host Girl with a Pearl Earring by Johannes Vermeer. In what can only be seen as poetry, the replica can only exist until the next rainfall.

3. Birth Of Venus

Venus, the God of love, was born a fully grown and arose from the sea (according to the artist Sandro Botticelli).  This recreation captures that moment, a “dirty” duplicate of Birth of Venus.

4. American Gothic

Grant Wood created American Gothic in 1930.  This artist recreated American Gothic on the tail end of what appears to be a Mazda Hatchback.  The real centrepiece in the original is the cottage in the background, which is based on the Gothic Revival style. However, the wiper in this dust-based recreation does have a certain charm of its own.

5. Hylas & the Nymphs

Nymphs - art

From the dusty back window of this Honda Fit arises the legend of Hylas. He was once an Argonaut and a dear friend of Hercules.  During the voyage for the Golden Fleece, the nymphs called out to Hylas as he filled his jug of water.  They offered him a kiss… a single sensual kiss.  That kiss proved to be his last as they pulled Hylas into the water’s depths.

6. Creation of Adam

sistene chape;

This is what would happen if Michelangelo drove a dust-covered Mazda.  In the original Sistine Chapel fresco (painted in 1511), Adam sits to the left and God reaches out to him from the right.  The Pillsbury doughboy  between their hands is unique to this dust rendition.

7. Wildflowers

8. Woman Trapped

9. Rushmore

 

Can Air Purifiers Make Allergies Worse?

Most people will come across air purifiers as an alternative way to reduce their allergic symptoms. Air Purifiers are used for allergies such as dust mite, pollen, and pet dander. The science behind allergy air purifiers is that they remove the allergens from the air and thus the sufferer no longer has an allergic reaction.

allergy-air-purifier

This sounds like a magic pill for allergy suffers but the vast majority of air purifiers will actually make their allergy worse. And it’s not just allergies, the wrong air purifier can be harmful and can actually aggravate health conditions like asthma and other respiratory issues.

I often spend time answering questions on Yahoo answers and very often people will ask why their air purifier is actually making their allergy worse. One young woman bought an ionizer air purifier and then told us how it made her allergies worse for the next 6 months. It was only when this purifier broke that her allergies got better.

ionic-yahoo-answers

Now the problem with many ionizer air purifiers is they will stir up the dust/pollen/pet dander in your room and bring it out of the areas it has been hiding. The Ionization process will then charge the allergen particles and make them heavier. However, if the air purifier has a limited ability to filter the allergens then the problem has only been made worse. Allergens that are stuck in your carpet or behind objects do not cause as many problems as the allergens in the air. It’s the reason why many of us even with no allergies start sneezing after we have been dusting our rooms.

smog-city

Another problem with using an air purifier for allergies is that some of the cheaper ionizer based models actually produce ozone which can trigger allergies in some people. In once case – The ionic breeze air purifier produced as much ozone as the amount found during high smog season in downtown LA! Any air purifier that produces any sort of ozone should be ignored by someone looking to remove allergens from the air.

So do air purifiers work for allergies?

It might sound like I am telling you that an air purifier is useless for allergies but I’m not. In fact, I helped to reduce my symptoms caused by my dust mite allergy by using an air purifier. However, it took me many different models and lots of $$ to find one that actually worked. So I have put together a list of things to look for if you really want an allergy air purifier:

1. No Ozone Production – check with independent results to see how much ozone is produced

2. Needs to be able to deal with a room sized at least 500 square feet – but preferable more than a 1000 feet.

3. Needs to be able to remove 99.7% of particles bigger than 0.3 microns. In most cases this will require a true HEPA filter. Again check independent results to see how it works both out of the box and after 6 months.

4. Always choose an air purifier that comes with a pre-filter. Pre Filters stop big particles such as dust, pet hair and general dirt. With a pre-filter it will mean that you won’t have to buy as many costly replacement HEPA filters.

5. Try to find an air purifier that has a silent sleep mode as you will want to keep the machine running whilst you sleep.

Tips to make sure your air purifier helps allergies and doesn’t make them worse

  • Be sure to check if your filters need replacing. A big issue is that people forget that filters need replacing either every 12 months (for cheaper units) or every 5 years for units like the Coway (more $$)
  • Make sure that you only go for an air purifier with a true HEPA filter or equivalent. The main issue for allergy sufferers is the pet and pollen dander which will get caught up in HEPA filters as the holes are small enough to let in air but can capture bigger particles like tree pollen or pet dander.
  • Don’t make the mistake of using a small unit in a large space. Many of the cheaper air purifiers are only built to deal with the air in a small room. If you take one of these units and place it in your large living room – the unit will become overwhelmed and won’t be able to remove the allergen causing particles from your home.

If you are looking for an air purifier that won’t make allergies worse but can significantly reduce the amount of dust and pet dander then be sure to check the list below of our recommendations.

As with all of the air purifier review recommendations we make, we have identified the best deals available right now for 2020 that are in stock and have available replacement filters.

All of the units featured include a true HEPA filter and activated Carbon. As always if you have a very large room or bigger use case – always look to go for our bigger room options.

We have also analyses reviews to identify if any paid or manipulative reviews have been used to artificially inflate the customer’s recommendation score.

1.Best for Most People – LEVOIT Pet Edition
LEVOIT Air Purifiers for Home Allergies and Pets Hair, H13 True HEPA Filter for Bedroom, 24db Filtration System with ARC Formula, Remove 99.97% Odors Smoke Dust Mold Pollen, Core P350, Gray
  • Genuine Replacements: Search for "p350-rf" or "B087R7ZFPB" for levoit 3-in-1 customized pet filter with ARC Formula to ensure excellent performance
  • Perfect Gift for Pet Families: Ideal for pet allergies, improve your air quality and help you and your pets relieve allergic symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, sinuses and heavy breathing. Ozone-free, approved by CARB, ETL listed and CA PROP 65 certified
  • High Powered: The Vortexair Technology offers an increased CADR of 141 CFM / 240 m³/h, handily covering rooms as large as 219 ft2 (20㎡) and refreshing the air 5 times per hour, perfect for bedroom, living room, dining room or pet room
  • H13-Grade True HEPA Filter: Reduces up to 99.97% of harmful air pollutants, smoke, pollen, mold spores, dust mites and other allergens as small as 0.3 microns from the air. This new fine non-woven fabric pre-filter is more effective than other common pre-filters at capturing floating hair, pet fur, pet dander, dust, fibers, lint
  • Sleep Mode & Timer: The QuietKEAP Technology keeps noise levels as low as 24dB. Set a timer for 2, 4, 8, or 12 hours, then turn off the display light to enjoy a perfect and undisturbed night of sleep. The pet lock button prevents your pets from tampering with any of the other buttons or settings

2. Budget Friendly – $75ish Hamilton Beach TrueAir
Hamilton Beach TrueAir Air Purifier for Home or Office with Permanent HEPA Filter for Allergies and Pets, Ultra Quiet, Black (04386A)
  • High Performance Hepa Grade Filter: Captures 99% of pet dander, dust, dust mites, pollen, and mold / mildew spores as small as 3 microns from the air.
  • Easy to clean: Allergen reducing air purifier has a permanent Hepa-grade filter that easily vacuums clean.
  • Compact, stylish design: Allergen reducing air purifier is perfect in the office or in rooms up to 160 square feet
  • Versatile air care that fits anywhere: Position the unit vertically or horizontally to best fit in your bedroom, den, nursery, hallway or living room at home or at the office.
  • Quiet and powerful: Use whisper clean for extra quiet operation at night, the medium setting or the quick clean setting for more powerful air cleaning.

3. Winix 5500-2 – For those with bigger rooms
Sale
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave and Odor Reducing Washable AOC Carbon Filter
  • True HEPA filter captures 99.97% of airborne pollutants; dust mites, pet dander, pollen and other allergens as small as 0.3 microns
  • Washable AOC Carbon Filter, made from activated carbon granulars for removal of household odors. Decibels 27.8 dB
  • PlasmaWave acts as a permanent filter to safely break down odor, allergens, chemical vapors and other pollutants with no harmful ozone
  • Smart Sensors gauge the air and our Auto Mode adjusts the fan to filter the air as needed; with a sleep mode for silent night time operation
  • CADR rated for 360 square feet room size. Suitable for medium and large rooms; kids bedrooms, family rooms and kitchens

4. Coway Airmega 400 – If you need the very best or the largest space
Coway Airmega 400 Smart Air Purifier with 1,560 sq. ft. Coverage
  • Coway Airmega 400 room air purifier is designed to accommodate large room sizes up to 1,560 square feet and cleans the air at least two times per hour when used as recommended.
  • Coway Airmega Max2 filter—combined activated carbon and True HEPA filter—captures and reduces up to 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles in the air, including pollen, pollutants and other allergens. It also reduces volatile organic compounds by more than 99% and reduces fumes such as NH3 and CH3CHO. Includes washable and permanent pre-filter to catch larger dust particles.
  • Coway Airmega’s pollution sensor communicates indoor air quality testing in real-time. The brightly colored LED ring lets you know how clean or dirty your indoor air is, every minute of the day.
  • Coway Airmega has five fan modes: Smart, Sleep, Low, Medium and High. Noise level is nearly silent at lower speeds. Max noise at highest setting is 43.2 dB.
  • Coway Airmega is a smart, energy efficient air purifier with a three-setting smart mode to adapt to its surroundings. Fan speed automatically adjusts based on the room’s air quality and lighting conditions to improve air quality.

LG Air Purifier Face Mask

LG Air purifier

Everyone around the world is doing their bit to help beat COVID-19 and one major focus has been the use of face masks.

Most common are cloth disposable ones but it looks like the future might be a bit more futuristic.

LG has plans to release the LG Puricare.

It’s not the first time I have seen an air purifier you wear on your face, but usually, the quality is sub-par and not something I would ever recommend.

But with the Puricare coming from a large company like LG, I’m excited to see what they can do.

Technical Specs of the Puricare air purifier mask

  • Two HEPA H13 filters on each side
  • An 820mh battery that lasts 2 hours on high or 8 hours on low.
  • The mask detects your levels of exertion and adjusts air flow to compensate.
  • A UV-LED that is aimed at killing bacteria.

We don’t normally get much attention for new air purifier releases so it was great to see so much press about this from some of the major sites on the web:

Obviously the big reason for this is that we are still in the midst of a global pandemic and any technology that can improve our situation is of interest to a lot of people.

But I wonder if this air purifier mask is that start of an entire category of air purifier?

I would love to see face masks produced by other big players in the air purifier space like Austin, IQAir and Honeywell.

It will be interesting to see if any of the other big players in technology get into making masks – an Apple face air purifier, anyone? or maybe something Onyx from Samsung that makes you look like Darth Vader?

Whilst we wait for the LG Puricare to come to the market, you can still utilize HEPA filters in your home or workplace to fight the Coronavirus. This doesn’t replace any other activity like face mask-wearing but it can help to pick up stray viruses particles in enclosed spaces

Be sure to check out my recently updated recommendations (based on the latest CDC advice) and if you prefer to do your own research then be sure to look for pure HEPA technology and avoid any units that talk about UV light or some other fancy technology. You want to get a unit that cleans the most air for $ spent.

https://www.cnet.com/health/lg-unveils-a-battery-powered-air-purifying-mask/

15 Smelliest Liquid Chemicals Known to Man [2020 Update]

Unlike sight or hearing, smell isn’t a sense we rely on in daily life. However, something with a truly foul stench can feel like a swift kick to the face.  

But what are the worst smells out there?

We all know gag at the smell of sick, baby poo or even your bosses wet fart but what is worse than that?

What is the stinkiest thing in the world?

Let’s jump in:

1. Who Me? [Top Secret Non Lethal Chemical Created in WW2.

who_me

During World War II, the Allied Forces created Who Me – one of the most nefarious chemical weapons.  Its purpose: to make the target smell like feces.  The goal: to spray Who Me on German officers, thus embarrassing the Sheppard’s and demoralizing the sheep. Unfortunately, the plan didn’t work. After two weeks, the project was decommissioned because the Allied moles couldn’t avoid smelling just as bad as the targets, thus incriminating themselves.

 

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2. Ethyl Mercaptan (ethanethiol)

Ethyl Mercaptan

Ethyl Mercaptan smells like leeks…except much, much worse.  Used in propane to give the odorless fuel a distinct smell, 1 part of Ethyl Mercaptan can be detected – without instrumentation – in 2.8 billion parts of air.  It even has a claim to fame, being ranked as the Guinness Book of World Record’s smelliest substance.

 

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3. US Government Standard Bathroom Malador

dirtybathroom

U.S. Government Standard Bathroom Malodor is what nightmares are made of.  One whiff activates your fight or flight response, making your heart beat like a bass drum and your stomach do back flips.  During testing, volunteers would scream in horror and swear at the experimenters. This stuff makes rotten eggs seem like eau de toilette. And strangely, U.S. Government Standard Bathroom Malodor is essentially safe… even though it smells like Death smeared in feces and wrapped in a dead carcass.

 

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4. Butyl seleno-mercaptan (C4H9SeH)

Skunk

Butyl seleno-mercaptan is the core molecule in a skunk’s spray, making it the bane of men and dogs alike.  Despite its foul stench, it has given mankind one benefit; skunk sprayings have fueled the sale of tomato soup for decades.

 

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5. Cadaverine

Cadaverine smells like Death…. literally.  As living flesh decays, amino acids interact and create Cadaverine.  When smelled, most men get a feeling of nausea and repulsion.

 

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6. Skatole

feces

Here’s a strange fact:  small amounts of skatole is used to flavor vanilla ice cream.  But when it’s not being blended into dairy products, skatole is known for giving human feces part of its odor.  As the easiest smell for mankind to notice (our nostrils are particularly sensitive to skatole), we know when we’re close to stepping/sitting/sleeping in crap… and can better avoid it. Unless it’s hot out and we’ve decided to, you know, eat it.

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7. Butyric acid

vomit

The smell of vomit makes most people nauseas – and butyric acid is to blame.  The compound starts to tickle the human nostril at concentrations as low as 10 parts per million.  Other fragrant sources include rancid butter, foot sweat and certain stinky cheeses.

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8. Dibutyl Telluride

abandoned train

Dibutyl Telluride has a bit of legend wafting from it.  Story has it that a German chemist, lost in thought, dropped a vile of Dibutyl Tellurid onto the train’s floor.  The vile smashed, releasing a smell that sent every passenger running for the door.  Weeks later, the stench was still so heavy in the train car (despite decontamination attempts) that the car had to be scrapped.

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9. Pyridine

coal_tar

Pyridine is colorless, but its stench is quite colorful.  Made from a concoction of bone oil (or coal tar) and various naturally occurring chemical compounds (alkaloids), pyridine has a smell you won’t easily forget.  Ever.

 

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10. Putrescine

rotting-rat

Putrescine – picture a dead rat.  Then leave that rat to rot in your wall for a year.  Take that smell, and multiply it by 10 and you have an idea of what putrescine smells like.  In fact, the compound at the heart of putrescine is the same as that created by actual rotting flesh.

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11. Hydrogen selenide

rotten_eggs

Hydrogen Selenide smells like rotten eggs mixed with rotten radishes, and poisons you as it “clings” to the insides of your nostrils.  It is more toxic than Hydrogen Cyanide, and dulls your sense of smell… making it incredibly dangerous on top of being unpleasantly fragrant.

 

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12. HN3 – Mustard Gas

mustard-gas-ww1

Mustard Gas doesn’t smell like mustard.  In reality, Mustard Gas induces fear and hysteria in those unlucky enough to encounter it.  Having no antidote, Mustard Gas caused more deaths during World War I than any other chemical weapon despite being less toxic than nerve gas.

13. Trimethylamine oxide,

rotting fish

This chemical is found more commonly in ocean sea life and is the reason that cod starts smell faster than river caught catfish.  This scent is caused by the breakdown in bacteria combined with the fish enzymes. If you ever smelt a week old fish you know how bad this can stink!

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14. Ammonia

smelly-armpit

Ammonia is 1 part Nitrogen, 3 parts Hydrogen and all parts repugnant.  Some of the more pleasant liquids with traces of ammonia include concentrated cleaning products, cat piss and human sweat.

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15. Isovaleric Acid

athletes_foot_danger_smelly

Isovaleric acid has an identity crisis.  On the one hand, the acid gives off at athletic foot smell and makes the body stink of B.O. On the other hand, one of isovaleric acid’s compounds (esters) is used in perfumes due to its fragrant scent.  Let’s just hope you catch it on one of its “up” days.

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If you liked this article then be sure to check out my latest list of recommended air purifiers that can be used to remove even the very worst smells from the air. 

Guide to Air Purifier Repair

Indoor air pollution is a fact of life, and in many cases, the air indoors is less healthy than the air outdoors. Between dirt, pet dander, dust, and various microorganisms, indoor air can get quite dirty. Many people use air purifiers to make the air that they breathe inside their homes cleaner. But like every other electronic appliance, air purifiers get dirty, and when that happens they run far less efficiently, but there is a lot you can do to improve its efficiency if you’re reasonably confident do-it-yourselfer.

This air purifier repair guide was based on many years and many different units.

air-purifier-repair Home air purifiers are fairly simple devices, and periodic maintenance according to the instruction manual can keep them running efficiently.

You’ve probably at some point noticed a layer of dust built up on top of your television or on a table in your home and wondered just how much of the stuff there is floating around in the air. Believe it or not, in an average home, every cubic foot of air has some 3,000,000 particles of dust suspended in it!

Air purifiers come in two basic types: mechanical and electronic. With a mechanical air purifier, a fan draws air through one or more filters. Typically, a pre-filter removes the biggest matter (such as pet hair), and then a filter with activated charcoal is next in line to remove odors. The third is usually a high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter, which removes more than 99.97% of particles that are 0.3 microns in diameter or larger.

Electronic air purifiers use a simple device called an electrostatic precipitator to remove particles like pollen and smoke from the air. Electrostatic precipitators charge air particles positively and then traps them on a grid that is negatively charged. This type of air purifier often contains a pre-filter and perhaps an activated carbon filter to get rid of dust and odors as well. Some of them also contain an ionizer, which is not the same thing as an electrostatic precipitator. An ionizer releases negatively charged ions (and sometimes ozone) into the surrounding air to trap dust particles.

3 Possible Air Purifier Problems You Can Repair

Depending on how many different filters and features an indoor air purifier has, a number of things can go wrong. Many of them are simple problems that you can fix yourself. Problems such as a dirty precipitating cell, dry motor bearings, clogged filters and air intake, bent collector plates, or broken ionizer wires can often be fixed right at home.

How to Fix Common Air Purifier Problems

1. Cleaning Grill and Filters

clean air purifier clean fans

For a mechanical air purifier, the first step is to turn the machine off and unplug it from the wall.

Usually there will be release buttons that allow you to remove the intake grill containing the foam pre-filters. Do this and remove the filters. To clean the foam filters, remove them and vacuum them through the grill (so the vacuum won’t attach itself to the filter while you’re using it).

Next, remove the screws that hold the filter housing. Vacuum or clean with a soft cloth. If you use a vacuum, keep the screws and other small parts that could be sucked up by the vacuum away from the part you’re vacuuming.

2. Cleaning the Fan

fan-air-purifier

If you need to get to the fan, take out the long screws that hold the housing together and gently pull the two halves of the housing apart.

The fan will have a locking ring at the end of the motor shaft. Put on a pair of safety goggles and remove the fan by twisting or prying the locking ring, but be very careful that you don’t bend the ring.

Take out the screws that hold the motor housing and the switch together. Pull the motor housing apart so you can see the motor. At this point, the switch module should slide out from the housing. You can clean the parts off with a soft cloth.

3. Replacing Broken Ionizer Wires

Ionizer Wires

You can replace broken ionizer wires with replacement wires. Your owner’s manual for the air purifier will tell you where you can get replacement wires. Making sure that the air purifier is turned off and unplugged, remove the precipitating cell according to the owner’s manual instructions. Generally, you use a pair of needle-nose pliers to disengage the wire spring from the connector on each end. You may need to press down on the connector with a screwdriver to free the wire. then you reverse the procedure to put a new wire in place.

3. Testing the Precipitator Cell

Multimeter

If you want to test the precipitating cell, you need to be familiar with using a multimeter. If you’re not, you probably shouldn’t do this. First, remove the precipitator cell from the machine. Set the meter for Resistance x 1, which may be labeled Rx1 on your meter. Clip one probe to the frame of the precipitator cell, and then touch the other probe to the ionizer terminal, then touch it to one outer collector terminal, and then the other outer collector terminal. If your reading is “1” (which means “infinity”), the cell is working properly. If you get a lower reading, the cell has a short circuit and you need to replace it.

With the right tools and information, you can pretty much repair any of the popular air purifier models such as Blue air, Dyson, Levoit, and even the full range of Honeywell purifiers. If you follow our guide and your purifier still does not work then you will likely have to take it to an electronic appliance specialist.

If after reading this post you decide that it might be easier to just replace your air purifier then be sure to check out the top devices we recommend for 2020:

Be sure to check out my top air purifier recommendations for 2020 (all budgets covered!)

1.Best for Most People – LEVOIT Pet Edition
LEVOIT Air Purifiers for Home Allergies and Pets Hair, H13 True HEPA Filter for Bedroom, 24db Filtration System with ARC Formula, Remove 99.97% Odors Smoke Dust Mold Pollen, Core P350, Gray
  • Genuine Replacements: Search for "p350-rf" or "B087R7ZFPB" for levoit 3-in-1 customized pet filter with ARC Formula to ensure excellent performance
  • Perfect Gift for Pet Families: Ideal for pet allergies, improve your air quality and help you and your pets relieve allergic symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, sinuses and heavy breathing. Ozone-free, approved by CARB, ETL listed and CA PROP 65 certified
  • High Powered: The Vortexair Technology offers an increased CADR of 141 CFM / 240 m³/h, handily covering rooms as large as 219 ft2 (20㎡) and refreshing the air 5 times per hour, perfect for bedroom, living room, dining room or pet room
  • H13-Grade True HEPA Filter: Reduces up to 99.97% of harmful air pollutants, smoke, pollen, mold spores, dust mites and other allergens as small as 0.3 microns from the air. This new fine non-woven fabric pre-filter is more effective than other common pre-filters at capturing floating hair, pet fur, pet dander, dust, fibers, lint
  • Sleep Mode & Timer: The QuietKEAP Technology keeps noise levels as low as 24dB. Set a timer for 2, 4, 8, or 12 hours, then turn off the display light to enjoy a perfect and undisturbed night of sleep. The pet lock button prevents your pets from tampering with any of the other buttons or settings

2. Budget Friendly – $75ish Hamilton Beach TrueAir
Hamilton Beach TrueAir Air Purifier for Home or Office with Permanent HEPA Filter for Allergies and Pets, Ultra Quiet, Black (04386A)
  • High Performance Hepa Grade Filter: Captures 99% of pet dander, dust, dust mites, pollen, and mold / mildew spores as small as 3 microns from the air.
  • Easy to clean: Allergen reducing air purifier has a permanent Hepa-grade filter that easily vacuums clean.
  • Compact, stylish design: Allergen reducing air purifier is perfect in the office or in rooms up to 160 square feet
  • Versatile air care that fits anywhere: Position the unit vertically or horizontally to best fit in your bedroom, den, nursery, hallway or living room at home or at the office.
  • Quiet and powerful: Use whisper clean for extra quiet operation at night, the medium setting or the quick clean setting for more powerful air cleaning.

3. Winix 5500-2 – For those with bigger rooms
Sale
Winix 5500-2 Air Purifier with True HEPA, PlasmaWave and Odor Reducing Washable AOC Carbon Filter
  • True HEPA filter captures 99.97% of airborne pollutants; dust mites, pet dander, pollen and other allergens as small as 0.3 microns
  • Washable AOC Carbon Filter, made from activated carbon granulars for removal of household odors. Decibels 27.8 dB
  • PlasmaWave acts as a permanent filter to safely break down odor, allergens, chemical vapors and other pollutants with no harmful ozone
  • Smart Sensors gauge the air and our Auto Mode adjusts the fan to filter the air as needed; with a sleep mode for silent night time operation
  • CADR rated for 360 square feet room size. Suitable for medium and large rooms; kids bedrooms, family rooms and kitchens

4. Coway Airmega 400 – If you need the very best or the largest space
Coway Airmega 400 Smart Air Purifier with 1,560 sq. ft. Coverage
  • Coway Airmega 400 room air purifier is designed to accommodate large room sizes up to 1,560 square feet and cleans the air at least two times per hour when used as recommended.
  • Coway Airmega Max2 filter—combined activated carbon and True HEPA filter—captures and reduces up to 99.97% of 0.3 micron particles in the air, including pollen, pollutants and other allergens. It also reduces volatile organic compounds by more than 99% and reduces fumes such as NH3 and CH3CHO. Includes washable and permanent pre-filter to catch larger dust particles.
  • Coway Airmega’s pollution sensor communicates indoor air quality testing in real-time. The brightly colored LED ring lets you know how clean or dirty your indoor air is, every minute of the day.
  • Coway Airmega has five fan modes: Smart, Sleep, Low, Medium and High. Noise level is nearly silent at lower speeds. Max noise at highest setting is 43.2 dB.
  • Coway Airmega is a smart, energy efficient air purifier with a three-setting smart mode to adapt to its surroundings. Fan speed automatically adjusts based on the room’s air quality and lighting conditions to improve air quality.

15 Most Awesome Bonsai Trees On Earth

Bonsai Originated from ancient Japan and now miniature tree growing has become a worldwide hobby that provides genuine aesthetic contemplation to the viewers.

Bonsai literally means “plant in a tray” in Japanese and it seams that the tree and the pot form an unique harmonious unit where the shape, texture and colour of one, compliments the other. To obtain a harmonious bonsai can take dozens of years of pruning, wiring, leaf trimming, clamping and grafting. Some of the specimens featured here are faithful to the Japanese aesthetics and philosophy, while some growers made a real effort to get out of the box…arr, tray.

Check out the following list of the 15 most awesome Bonsai trees on Earth!

1. World’s Smallest Bonsai Tree

worlds smallest bonsaiWhat’s smaller than a miniature tree? A miniature miniature tree. This masterpiece measures 22mm and it was obtained from a Malaysian local species called “water jasmine” – the only species that can apparently be made so small. Creator Kuah Tee Teong claims that it may be the world’s smallest bonsai, since the standard measure of a miniature bonsai is 10cm.  Kuah doesn’t strive for popularity and didn’t register his creation in the Worlds Book of records, neither is he planning to sell his tiny trees. His philosophy: ‘’If I sell, then I’ll have nothing to show.” He also prunes animal shaped trees that look like dogs, snails or octopuses.

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2. Music from a Bonsai

bonsai music

Diego Stocco is not a bonsai grower, hasn’t won any bonsai competition award, but he is, in his own unique way, a bonsai lover and tamer. He bought a bonsai tree and made it sing, proving that you actually can teach an old bonsai new tricks. Using a Røde NT6 microphone, some tiny transducers and a customized stethoscope, Stocco recorded an experimental piece played exclusively by the bonsai’s small leaves and branches. He also used a piano hammer, a paint brush and different bows to obtain different sounds from the tree. Don’t be scandalised if it seams from this video that he is somehow torturing the poor little tree. No bonsai was damaged during the experiment and, as you know, art demands sacrifices.

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3. Rare Ganoderma Bonsai

ganoderma bonsai

This is an extremely rare ganoderma lucidum cultivated bonsai, with an impressive diameter of 90cm. The successive layers and crown shaped cap make it unique in the world.
Known as “”fairy herb”, Gandorema lucidum has been used for medicinal purposes in traditional Chinese medicine for more than 2000 years. It is one of the oldest mushrooms to have been used in disease treatments and , due to it’s presumed health benefits and apparent absence of side effects, it is known as one of the most powerful herbal substance in East Asia. In Chinese culture, it is also considered a good luck, beauty and longevity charm. The plants health benefits and spectacular shapes and colours saved it an important place on the bonsai market as well.

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4. Awarded Penjing Landscape

penjing-bonsai-exhibition-08

“Penjing” is the Chinese extension of bonsai art and it can be literally translated “landscape in a pot”’. The chines art focuses more on creating a convincing miniature landscape than shaping the perfect miniature tree as Japanese bonsai growers strive to obtain. Nonetheless, the value of an awarded penjing is given by the way it looks with naked branches, when not attired in fabled leaves and flowers. The assembly in the image is called 大風驚濤, which literally means “harsh wind severe waves” and it was awarded at the Guangzhou Penjing Exhibition in China, the biggest lingnan (southern style) penjing exhibition since the founding of the country.

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5. The Oldest Bonsai Trees

oldest bonsai tree

The oldest known bonsai trees still living can be found in a private restaurant garden in Tokyo, Japan. The 400 to 800 years old trees in Happo-en Garden ar an attraction for any bonsai lover visiting Tokyo. Every tree is grown in era-specific pots that are often as valuable as the trees themselves.

The practice of potted trees gose way back to the Egyptian Era, 4000 B.C. Inhareted images depict miniature trees cultivated in rock containers. Pharaoh Ramesses III is known to have donated several olive trees and other miniature plants to various temples. In the Indian Pre-Common Era several plant species were grown in a “”bonsai manner” for medicine and nutrition purposes.

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6. World’s Biggest Bonsai Tree

biggest bonsai tree

This 600 year old Japanese bonsai is presumably the biggest bonsai tree in the world, according to the staff of Akao Herb & Rose Garden in Atami, Japan.  Sure, the title is somehow paradoxical since the main quality of bonsai trees is being small. But, after all, if bonsai means “tree in a pot” it doesn’t metter how big the pot is, especially if it contains an impressing 5 meter tall and 10 meter wide ancient red pine bonsai like this one.

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7. Walter Pall’s Rocky Mountain Juniper

rocky mountin juniper walter pall

rocky mountin juniper walter pall2

Walter Pall is a kind of bonsai rock-star among the culture’s enthusiasts. He has received several dozens national and international awards for his beautiful, dramatic bonsai. He has won the most prestigious Crespi Cup Award of Italy for his well known Rocky Mountain Juniper, and has come in among the top six, every time he has entered. He has also won second and third and other places places in the Gingko Cup Awards of the Belgium bonsai competition held every two years. The most controversial information about Walter pall is that, although world renown, he considers himself an amateur working professionally. That’s because he styles trees for his own amusement and not for commercial purposes.  In time he managed to put together one of the most comprehensive bonsai collections around.

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8. Walter Pall’s Acer Platanus

walter pall acer

Another famous piece from Walter pall’s collection is this Sycamore Maple  that won the Bonsai Today / Art of Bonsai Photo Contest. Pall was one of the first Europeans to work with indigenous species, which he collects in his beloved Alpine mountain.s He now owns a collection of about 1000 quality trees in varying stages of development and keeps a store reserve of about 1000 handmade pots to compliment the bonsai. Besides his famous conifers he is also well known for his beautiful deciduous trees. Walter’s bonsai usually are strong, powerful trees which he frequently forms in natural shapes. The longer he has been involved with tree development, the more he has moved away from traditional bonsai styling to his own concepts of design.

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9. Walter Pall’s Crab Apple Tree

walter pall crab apple

This is my personal favourite from Pall’s collection:  an incredibly sweet 65 cm high apple tree. I have no idea how anyone that sees it live could resist not to taste those tiny apples, but I guess Mr. Pall keeps it in a safe place, away from leering guests. Fruit trees training is an ascending trend among bonsai growers. The fascinating part about it is that the fruits are indeed edible, especially those belonging to the citrus category. Common fruits that can be obtained in small size include: cherries, apples, lime, lemons, tangerine and figs. The bonsai fruit tree success strongly depends on meteorological and topographical factors, like humidity, temperature and soil.

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10. Awarded Chinese Juniper “Itoi-gawa”

Juniperus Chinensis

The Chines Juniper is a very loved and popular tree among bonsai professionals and amateurs alike. Due to the woods malleability, it can be stylised into beautiful and interesting shapes. Like this one belonging to Enrico Savini from Italy, that has won several awards, including Ben Oki International Design Award in 2003 and Bonsai Clubs International People’s Choise Award 2008. Savini says he fell in love with bonsai art at age ten and his first tree, a Prunus mume that only survived a few months, was a gift from his grandma. “ I couldn’t forgive myself for that failure, so I took it as a personal challenge, my entire career has been a continuous personal challenge.”

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11. Dan Robinson, The Picasso of Bonsai

dan robinson mountain hemlock

This perfect Mountain hemlock expresses Dan Robinson’s virtuosity as a bonsai artist and his respect for the nature’s own ways. Known as a pioneer in bonsai art, or as the Picasso of bonsai, he practices an preaches techniques inspired by the ancient Japanese ways.  This is one of the many amazing captures pictured in the book Gnarly Branches, Ancient Trees: The Life and Works of Dan Robinson – Bonsai Pioneer made ]n collaboration with photographer Will Hiltz.

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12. Awarded Junipero San Jose

Junipero San Jose

This work of art belongs to Nacho Marin, a Venezuelan Fine Arts graduate who is fascinated by the infinite possibilities of taming and manipulating trees. In his quest to recreate a natural environment, he also takes great care so that the shape and mood of the final product reflects his artistic vision. No wonder that his Junipero San Jose won the flattering title of   ”Most artistically innovative entry of all entries from all categories”  at The Art of Bonsai Contest 2008.

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13. Adenium Flower Bonsai

Adenium Flower

Not as popular as junipers, but unanimously loved for their delicacy and frailness, flower bonsais can come up in extraordinary forms.  Mr. Jai Krishna Agarwal from india has about 100 specimens in his collections and he especially loves adenium flowers. Why? Because their trunks often remind the shapes of the human body . The effect is surrealistic to say the least, this beautiful example shown here brings to mind some elaborate fauvist sculpture.

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14. Semi-cascade Juniper Bonsai

Semi-cascade Juniper Bonsai

A Juniper bonsai collected, designed and developed by Harry Hirao and displayed at the National Bonsai and Penjing Mueseum at The United States National Arboretum. This very old, semi-cascade style bonsai was probably collected in the White Mountains of California. The shari (deadwood on the trunk) is very prominent on this bonsai, leaving only one stripe where the tree is connected between its leaves and the roots.

The esthetics  behind this type of contorted and twisted trunk is called literati and it was influenced by the political and academic conditions in the Tang Dynasty period, when penjing was once widely practiced by the elites. Literati is a contemplative, lyrical style displaying tension (in the trunk) and release (in the cascading branches) like the universal law of Yin and Yang.

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15. Beautiful Azalea Tree

azaleea tree

An old Azalea, probably a Satsuki type, from the Collection of the National Bonsai and Penjing Mueseum at The United States National Arboretum. Azaleas bloom in spring, their flowers often lasting several weeks. In Chinese culture, the azalea is known as “thinking of home bush” (xiangsi shu) and is immortalized in old poetry and contemporary stories.

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See more  Bonsai Trees >>

8 Ways To Get Rid Of Cooking Odor

Many people love to cook at home but hate the smell that cooking leaves in your kitchen and even all over the house. Cooking spicy food, exotic recipes and roasting can leave the lingering smell all over your home especially if your home is fully air conditioned.

But that should not prevent you from enjoying the luxury of staying with your family at home and enjoy the fun of cooking. There are ways to eliminate the unwanted odor.

1. Air Fresheners

air freshener

Air fresheners are commercial or consumer products used in homes and restrooms to make the air fresh.

How air fresheners work? According to Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) America, air freshener works in combination or one of the following:

how air freshener works

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But despite the air freshener’s positive name, MCS America said that air fresheners do nothing or little to make the air fresh.

air fresheners do little

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MCS America is not alone for having negative feedback in using air fresheners. ScienceDaily.com also posted that many cleaners and air fresheners may pose health risks when used indoors.

To avoid the health risks from using chemical air fresheners, use homemade air fresheners instead.

2. Proper ventilation

ventilation

Ventilation is the process of providing fresh air to an enclosed room and taking away contaminated air outside. Kitchen is one of the busiest places in your house. You you use it 3 times or more to cook food every day. Because of that, proper ventilation is recommended to reduce and eliminate cooking odors. For proper ventilation, here is a document in portable document format: “Ventilation – The Secret to a clean, odor free kitchen” courtesy of ARAcontent.

ventilation fan

3. Simmer Potpourri

simmering potpourri

Potpourri is a kind of air freshener made from cones, seeds, leaves, and dried flowers. source

Since it is a kind of air freshener, it only masks the odor using its scent. If you want to make an easy homemade simmering potpourri, below is an instructional video:

4. Vinegar

apple-cider-vinegar

Vinegar is a multipurpose liquid as a result of ethanol fermentation. Acetic acid is the main ingredient of vinegar that gives it an acidic taste. It is also famous in household cleaning applications. source

Because of the vinegar’s popularity as a multipurpose liquid, Richard Sweeney, an eHOw contributor posted instructions on how to eliminate odors with vinegar.

clean with vinegar

5. Make some coffee

coffee aroma

Coffee lovers will love this idea. Coffee is a brewed drink coming from roasted coffee beans.

coffee beans

The idea here is to mask the cooking odor with the aroma of coffee. It will not only mask the odor, according to ScientificAmerican.com, just smelling coffee helps head.

6. Baking Soda

baking soda

Some people think that baking soda and baking powder are the same. But actually, they are not. So, what is the difference between baking soda and baking powder? Baking soda is pure sodium bicarbonate, while baking powder contains sodium bicarbonate, acidifying agent and drying agent.

Baking soda is a chemical salt with various practical uses. Baking soda is commonly used in baking as leavening agent.

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baking soda cleaning

So, How to remove odors from home using baking soda? Well, just sprinkle the baking soda into the rugs and carpets and leave it there overnight. Then vacuum it all up in the morning when you wake up. Put a tablespoon of baking soda combined with vinegar into your sink drain to freshen it.

7. Scrubbing

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Some cooking odors came from the sticking grease from cupboards, ceilings, walls, cookware and stoves. If you clean those areas, make sure that you include those tricky areas.

An eHow contributor, Deborah Waltenburg will also help you on how to clean cooking grease.

8. Air Purifiers

Air Purifiers are made to clean the air pollutants inside your house. Actually, the level of pollutants in the air inside is 25 to 100 times HIGHER than outside according to the United States Environmental Agency.

Not all air purifiers can remove odor. Only those air purifiers with carbon filter and ozone generator can remove odor, like the odor from cooking. source

comparison chart

Carbon air purifier – this kind of air purifier uses activated carbon filters, a highly effective filter that captures odor, cigarette smoke, chemical fumes, and gases.

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carbon air purifier 2

Ozone generator air purifier – this kind of air purifier uses ozone, an oxidant that is highly reactive in destroying chemicals and bacteria.

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ozone air purifier 2

11 Utterly Ridiculous Air Purifier Gadgets

Save Your Money And Keep Well Away From These 11 Bizarre Air Purifiers.

1. Pet Purifier

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Finally your dog can breath clean air it sniffs at another dogs ass. This bizarre air purifier even comes with an air freshener mode. Once activated the air freshener will spray your pet and those around it with a scent that is meant to induce relaxation in you and your dog.

Thankfully this ridiculous pet gadget costs less than $20 so you will still have some money left for the inevitable veterinary fees.

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2. Face Mask Purifier

bizarre-usb-face-mask-air-purifier-detail

Be honest the Hannibal Lecter look is hot this year!

This gadget is powered by USB and uses two fans to provide you with a constant stream of clean air. Whilst the constant sound of the fans might annoy colleagues I doubt they will have the cojones to make eye contact with you. Sadly for this purifier to work outdoors you will need to cart it around with your laptop.

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3. Personal Air Purifier

personal-air-purifier

At first i thought this was some sort of clunky MP3 player circa 1996.

This ugly device is actually an air purifier that you hang around your neck. How this can actually provide you with clean air is beyond me but thankfully you won’t have to worry as its not longer available for sale.

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4. Cat Litter Purifier

cat-purifier

If you keep forgetting to change the cat litter but hate the feline stench then this might be the gadget for you. However I doubt this purifier could do much to stem the smell from a 6 weeks worth of cat mess.

Just save your money and get off the coach once in a while to look after your pet.

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5. Plant Purifier

plant-air-purifier

On paper this plant air purifier sounds awesome. It uses plants instead of filters to clean the air in your room of noxious pollutants. However can you seriously imagine these two little plants cleaning your smoke drenched dirt box of a room?

I think not!

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6. All in One Clock, Temperature and USB Air Purifier

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This gadget is utterly useless for someone who smells ok and sleeps in a bed. However if you stink, smoke, sleep at your desk and need to know the time constantly then this is the gadget for you.

It is USB powered, beeps every hour and even has the room temperature on it’s lcd screen. Totally useless

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7. Ozonolysis Air Purifier – Create Smog In Your Roomgroundlevelozone

Recently a range of ionic purifiers were released that used ozonolysis technology. Whilst the marketing slogan told us that these purifiers would clean the air, the scary truth was that these unit where pumping out harmful toxins.

One purifier generated as much harmful ozone that is found during a high smog day in downtown Los Angeles.

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8. USB Pen Drive Purifier

usb_pen_drive_purifierWhilst at $6 this purifier is dirt cheap but its still totally ridiculous. The only thing this gadget will do is to help run your laptop battery down. I would prefer to spend the $6 on something more useful.. like maybe some Gummy Bacon?

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9. Manmade Tree – Air Purifier

fake-tree-air-purifier

In Peru they have found a bizarre solution to the air pollution problem. Whilst a simple solution would be to stop cutting down trees they decided to build these strange manmade monstrosities. The “Super Tree” purifies the air using electricity and they say it can clean up to 200,000 cubic metres of air.

Sadly as it’s a machine this “tree” creates a large amount of sludge like waste that needs to be sewage treated.

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10. Apple Air Purifier

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Be warned this purifier is not from the makers of the iPhone and iBook. I really have doubts on this small gadgets ability of cleaning any amount of air but hey at least it looks pretty!

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11. Purifier Chair

purifier-chair

Remove the stench from an 8 hour marathon session of WoW with this awesome gaming chair. It combines a personal air purifier with touch screen controls and multi monitor set-up.

At $40,000 I imagine will be way over the budget for the average Wow player.

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