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The best air purifiers for dust and pollen allergies 

These pollen- and dust-busting machines are not to be sneezed at. And some even cost less than $600. 

flowers with pollen in air
Last updated: 24 June 2024

Hayfever and allergies are the absolute pits: all that scratching and sneezing can be relentless and just plain unpleasant. 

Whether your allergies only flare when the seasons change or you're suffering year-round, an air purifier can help dial down your discomfort.  

While they can be expensive (some cost well over $1000) the price can be worth it if they do the job. But spending more won't necessarily give you better relief – some of the most expensive machines are disappointingly ineffective, while some of the more affordable models banish allergens better than products costing far more.

So how can you make sure you're spending your hard-earned money on a model that justifies the price tag?

Some air purifiers cost well over $1000, which is a lot when you're already spending a fortune on antihistamines and inhalers

CHOICE's appliance experts tested 47 air purifiers in our labs, assessing their ability to remove dust, smoke and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) from the air. 

The best purifiers banish more than 90% of the particles; others remove significantly less (but they can extract quite a lot of dollars from your wallet).

Here's how we tell which models are the best at removing dust and pollen. Plus, which models aren't worth your money. 

And exclusively for CHOICE members, we'll reveal exactly which models are the best at removing these allergens from the air, plus how well they remove other pollutants. 

If you just want to get straight to the best products, you can jump to the results now.

How to tell which air purifiers are best at removing pollen

Our testing measures how much dust, smoke and VOCs each air purifier removes from the air. But what if you specifically need something to minimise the pollen count inside your home?

"Dust and pollen particles come in a wide range of sizes, but they are broadly similar, so if an air purifier is good at removing dust from the air, then it'll also work well for pollen," says CHOICE appliance expert Chris Barnes

If an air purifier is good at removing dust from the air, then it'll also work well for pollen

Chris Barnes, CHOICE appliance expert

But he also issues a word of warning.

"If you or someone in your household is asthmatic, steer clear of air purifiers that use ozone technology."

"They generate ozone, which causes breathing irritation. Ionic purifiers can also produce ozone, so we recommend avoiding them too."

Use our detailed review to find the best air purifiers for dust if you're looking for a machine to purge the pollen from your home.

Air purifiers and asthma

Asthma Australia’s Anthony Flynn interviews Chris Barnes from CHOICE.

The importance of air purifier filters 

The best filter type for pollen and dust

"HEPA filters are the best type for removing most airborne pollutants, including pollen and dust," Chris says. 

"Fortunately, most air purifiers come with HEPA filters, but make sure you check that the purifier has one before you buy, and also check the price and availability of replacement filters." 

Factoring in replacement filter costs

To make sure your air purifier is as effective as possible, you need to keep the filters in good working order. 

Filter costs can add up quickly. Depending on the air purifier and the type of filters it uses, it could cost you more than $200 a year in replacement filters.

You can wash and reuse pre-filters and carbon filters, which will extend their life so you don't need to buy them as frequently. 

Generally, HEPA filters aren't washable so you'll have to replace them from time to time. You can extend their life a little by gently brushing or vacuuming the filter surface to remove dust.

Depending on the air purifier and the type of filters it uses, it could cost you more than $200 a year in replacement filters

Filter design matters, too: some have separate pre-filters, carbon filters and HEPA filters so you'll only need to buy each component as it needs replacing. Others have an all-in-one filter that you'll have to replace each time, even if the pre-filters and carbon filters still have life left in them.

If you need to run the air purifier every day, factor the cost of filters in when you're researching what to buy. A cheap air purifier might seem like value for money, but if you're spending a fortune on filters then it's not such a good deal.

Our detailed review not only shows you the best air purifiers from our tests, but also how much replacement filters cost and how much you can expect to pay for filters each year. 

dyson purifier hotcool formaldehyde hp09

Dyson: Disappointing dust removal.

Should you buy a Dyson air purifier?

Surely a company that spends as much on research and development as Dyson should totally nail the air purifier thing, right? 

Sadly not.

We tested three Dyson air purifiers and none of them did much to remove dust from the air, despite their large price tags and brand pedigree.

And even though the two most expensive have "formaldehyde" in their names, they actually aren't especially good at removing VOCs from the air.

We tested three Dyson air purifiers and none of them did much to remove dust from the air, despite their large price tags

In fact, none of the three Dyson air purifiers we tested performed particularly well overall in our testing, with the most expensive of all – the Dyson Big+Quiet Formaldehyde BP03 – only managing a disappointing CHOICE Expert Rating of 63%.

But six of the air purifiers recommended by our experts cost less than even the cheapest Dyson, ranging in price from $420 to $827.

A CHOICE membership could save you from spending too much on a fancy Dyson air purifier that doesn't do a good job.

A CHOICE membership could save you from spending too much on a fancy Dyson air purifier

Let's do the maths:

Instead of buying a $1499 Dyson, you could take out a CHOICE membership for $83.95, buy a cheaper and more effective air purifier recommended by CHOICE experts and come out $995 ahead – that's nothing to be sneezed at!

Plus you'd have access to more than 200 other reviews to help you buy better for all your other purchases.

breville the easy air connect purifier lap158

The Breville Easy Air Connect goes easy on dust and pollen.

Air purifiers to avoid if you have dust and pollen allergies

These air purifiers won't do much to remove dust and pollen from the air. Some of them are among the cheapest purifiers we tested, but others are at the upper end of the price scale. 

Whether you buy the cheapest or most expensive of these, you'll have to spend even more money on antihistamines because these won't do much to help your allergies.

*Price correct at time of purchasing.

The best air purifiers for removing dust and pollen from the air

Our lab tests show which air purifiers perform well and which don't. Our experts test each product thoroughly, so if they recommend a particular model you can be sure it's the best air purifier for your dollar. 

Only CHOICE members have access to all our expert, independent tests.

If you're not a member, join CHOICE to access thousands of reviews.

Or if you're already a CHOICE member, you can see the top-rated products for each category in one easy-to-read rundown below.

A CHOICE membership can save you money by helping you avoid overpriced duds and choose the best products for your budget.

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The air purifiers that bust the most dust and pollen

These air purifiers will save you during sneezin' season. 

They're all recommended by our experts, which means they have a CHOICE Expert Rating of 70% or more, so they're good at removing other pollutants too. 

Some of these models use ozone or ionic technology, which means they're not suitable for people with asthma. 

We've indicated which models use these technologies so you know which ones to avoid if there are asthmatics in your household

ionmax aire ion900pro

The Ionmax + Aire busts the most dust of all the air purifiers we tested.

Ionmax + Aire ION900PRO

Note: Uses ionisation filter

  • Dust removal score: 95%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 87%
  • RRP: $999*
  • Replacement filter cost: $300

*RRP at time of CHOICE testing.

Samsung AX7500K (AX90T7080WD)

  • Dust removal score: 87%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 81%
  • RRP: $699
  • Replacement filter cost: $149 x 2 (two filters are needed)

Blue Air 3610

  • Dust removal score: 81%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 73%
  • RRP: $598
  • Replacement filter cost: $140

Philips Series 3000i AC3033/73

  • Dust removal score: 75%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 76%
  • RRP: $519
  • Replacement filter cost: $149

Samsung AX 5500 AX46BG5000GSSA

  • Dust removal score: 74%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 70%
  • RRP: $599
  • Replacement filter cost: $149

Mitsubishi Electric E85R (MA-E85R-A)

  • Dust removal score: 73%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 73%
  • RRP: $999
  • Replacement filter cost: $299

Sharp FX-J80J-W

Note: Uses ionisation filter

  • Dust removal score: 73%
  • CHOICE Expert Rating: 74%
  • RRP: $827
  • Replacement filter cost: $149

Stock images: Getty, unless otherwise stated.