If there’s one thing that bonds our team together, it’s our obsession with hunting down the best products. We’re constantly testing and trying things (being part of an e-commerce company helps!) and comparing notes on our favorites. Think of our Letter of Recommendation series as a way of passing those notes along to you.
Exposed brick walls. Hardwood floors. Enormous windows. Two spacious closets. Right up until the moment I actually saw the apartment for myself, I’d been convinced it was too good to be true. Then I saw each and every one of those features I’d read about on Craigslist up close, along with ample kitchen cabinet space (and a pantry!), great light on all sides, and not one, but two ornamental fireplaces. I had to have it. I rushed home to fill out the application and signed the lease a month before my current one even expired.
The day I’d visited the apartment had been an unseasonably warm autumn day, so I wouldn’t recognize my new pad’s fatal flaw until weeks later—four slate gray, cast iron upright radiators that roared to life with a vengeance several times a day. The clanging noise they made was irritating; the ceaseless dry heat they churned out was unbearable. Pliers and a bit of elbow grease helped me turn three of them off completely, but one of them soldiered on at full blast no matter what I did.
The simplest solution was to leave the windows cracked open at all times. As long as there was a cool breeze outside, I wouldn’t have to worry about sweating profusely in my own home. My duvet became a purely decorative item. And then, I went in for a routine check-up. A nurse took a quick glance down my throat and up my nostrils and asked, “Do you live in an apartment with an overactive heater? You’re really dried out.” Seeing my horrified reaction, she added, “A humidifier might help.”
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I’d never owned a humidifier before, but acquiring one seemed easy enough. All I desired was that it look good and, well… humidify. The latter demand proved as simple as one might imagine; the former, less so. Each and every humidifier I came across appeared to be cut from similar cloth: a transparent blue water tank perched atop a white plastic base. Clinical and unappealing, like a series of miniaturized workplace water coolers.
I held off on selecting a model to bring home. Meanwhile, my dry skin persisted, no matter how much heavy moisturizer I slathered on each day. Determined not to detract from my apartment’s aesthetic with a clunky eyesore, I considered alternative routes. Perhaps one of those novelty USB humidifiers? But then I’d only have relief—minimal, at best—while I used my computer, and I needed something that would work through the night, the time when my heater typically goes into overdrive.
I’d just about resigned myself to my plain humidifier fate when I discovered Broksonic’s Allonge model. Slick and modern with an elongated shape resembling an oversize orchid vase, the Broksonic humidifier could pass for an art object were it not for that telltale stream of cool fog wafting from its neck. And, not to be overshadowed by its appealing design, the functionality was equally impressive. The hidden tank holds well over two liters of water, and with three power levels, I could start the day off slow and maximize the room’s humidity as the heater gained momentum. Reader, I bought it immediately in brown—a shade which happens to dovetail quite nicely with my wooden floorboards, I might add.
I had only two requirements for a humidifier. The Allonge managed to satisfy them both and then some. When I unboxed it for the first time, I realized that in addition to its lightweight design, auto shut-off feature, and quiet functionality, there are built-in felt tab trays that act as a scent diffuser if you add a few drops of your favorite essential oil. I was smitten, but of course, there was only one way to be sure the Allonge was as good as I thought it was. One year later, I returned to the doctor’s office for my annual check-up and held my breath as Juliette checked out my nose and throat. “Everything’s looking good,” she noted. Just the thing I wanted to hear.