About a year ago, I hopped on the essential oils bandwagon because several people I know use them for health and wellness purposes. However, I simply enjoyed the aroma and so did my kids. I’ve since purchased two ultrasonic diffusers, both of which have had drawbacks. One of these, the H2EO Ultrasonic Diffuser, leaves about half of the water in the bowl when it automatically shuts off. I am also currently using a replacement unit of the Now Solutions Ultrasonic Oil Diffuser, the first of which only lasted three months, and this diffuser only runs 4 hours. So when the Miu Color 300 mL Aroma Diffuser Ultrasonic Humidifier was offered to the Gadgeteer, I was curious to see how it would compare to these.
- Miu Color 300 mL Aroma Diffuser Ultrasonic Humidifier (6″ high x ~4.25″ diameter, 2.4MHZ)
- 100 mL measuring cup
- AC adapter
- User manual
Design & Build Quality
The Miu Color Aroma Diffuser appears to be made of a lightweight, inexpensive white plastic; it’s about the same quality as the Now Solutions diffuser. From the top of the diffuser you can see the mist outlet.
The bottom of the diffuser reveals the air inlet, the DC port with a slot on the base of the unit to accommodate the power cord, and three clear rubber pads to help avoid scratching furniture.
The top of the diffuser is easily removed by slightly twisting counterclockwise and gently pulling up. Also illustrated above are the 100, 200, and 300 mL fill lines. It is also important to note that this is the side from which to pour out any left over water. If water is poured from any other side it may get inside the diffuser which would damage the unit and cause it to stop working.
Inside the main unit on the left in the photo you can see the ultrasonic transducer. Inside the lid of the diffuser on the right you can see the mist outlet.
There are two buttons on the diffuser: Light and Mist. This diffuser comes with only white light which has two brightness levels. When the Light button is pressed once, the diffuser will shine at the highest brightness level (the illumination of about two to three night lights) and if pressed a second time, the brightness is decreased. If you press the light button a third time, the light will shut off (or long press to shut it off at any time). The diffuser is capable of running without the light.
The second button is the Mist button. You must press and hold this for two seconds to turn the unit on. The default is the 60 minute timer setting and with each subsequent press you can select longer timer settings. With the lid off you can see four LEDs indicating the timer settings of the diffuser – these are printed on the lid of the unit. The first, second, and third LEDs represent 60, 180, and 360 minute timer settings respectively. The last LED represents the ON position, which means that the diffuser will remain on until it detects that the water level is low and then automatically shut off.
This side of the diffuser shows the air outlet and warns you not to get water in this area which may cause electrical faults.
I’ve seen reviews posted for different diffusers and noticed that many people do not realize that even though these devices work with water, you MUST be careful not to spill any water on certain areas of the diffuser when cleaning it or pouring out any excess water. It is also best to fill the diffuser in the location where you will be running it thus avoiding having to carry it and potentially spilling the water on sensitive areas that will cause the diffuser to stop working. I’ve read that people have voided their warranties (on other diffusers) because of this very thing, with the manufacturer blaming the malfunction on user error.
Operation: To use the Miu Aroma Diffuser, I first plugged the power cord into the DC port on the bottom of the diffuser then set it in my desired location (on the bar area of my kitchen which is open to my living room and breakfast nook). I took the lid off then filled the tank to 300 mL using distilled water (the manual states that you may also use tap water but you are not to exceed the 300 mL mark). It then states that you should add two to three drops of pure essential oils for this level of water. However, the photos on Miu Color’s website illustrating how to use the diffuser suggest that two to three drops of oil for every 100 mL is adequate. Hmmm – what to do, what to do… I decided to start out with just three drops of Thieves oil per 300 mL (Thieves oil: a mixture of clove bud, lemon, cinnamon bark, eucalyptus, rosemary, and tea tree oils), replaced the lid, plugged in the adapter, held the mist button for two seconds, then pressed the Mist button repeatedly to select the 360 minute setting. It worked for the specified time then emitted a quiet beep as it automatically shut off. Since there was water still in the tank, I tried the other settings (60 and 180 minutes) with the same success, all on one 300 mL fill. After each of these timed settings, the mist output shut off but the light remained on. In another test of the diffuser, I selected the ON position and found that my diffuser worked for well over 10 hours (~12 hours) before automatically shutting off with the light shutting off as well.
With subsequent uses, I increased the amount of essential oils to six drops of the Thieves oil per 300 mL. This was more suitable for me. I suppose it really depends on the types of oils you are using; some have a stronger aroma than others. For instance, when using the diffuser with peppermint oil I only needed three drops per 300 mL.
There is no option to vary the quantity of mist that is being output – just full steam ahead 😉 !! There is also no option to cycle the mist on and off for a certain duration as there is with the H2EO diffuser. Since we do not have a problem with high humidity here in north Texas, this is not an issue for me; however this may be something to consider for those who struggle with such issues. It is important to note that the information about this diffuser on the Miu Color website does not match the information in the user manual. My diffuser does NOT have the ability to adjust the mist output from high to low and it does NOT have a 30 minute timer setting.
Cleaning: The manual suggests that the diffuser should be cleaned after it has been used five to six times or every two to three days. After carefully disconnecting the power cord from the unit (be sure to keep it level to avoid spills!) and pouring out any excess water from the drain side, it mentions that you should use mild diluted kitchen detergent on a portion of a soft damp cloth to remove any oil residue while being careful not to scratch the ultrasonic transducer. You then wipe off any detergent with the non detergent side of the damp cloth. The manual then states that you should add water to the diffuser and turn it on for 30 minutes, after which you pour out the remaining water before you can use it again. It also stresses that you should not use chlorine, acidic, or enzyme based detergents for cleaning the outside or inside of the unit and that only neutral detergents should be used. Oy!! What a process! My H2EO allows me to used isopropyl alcohol (pH 6-8 which is neutral) on a soft cloth to dissolve any residual oils and clean the unit which is a MUCH quicker process than this! I used isopropyl alcohol to clean the Miu Aroma Diffuser but do not necessarily suggest doing this to any of our readers since there is no official documentation that states that this is an acceptable way to clean this diffuser and may void the three month warranty.
I found that I really enjoyed using the Miu Color 300 mL Aroma Diffuser Ultrasonic Humidifier. Using either tap or distilled water, it works continuously for well over 10 hours (for me) when placed in the ON position before automatically shutting off. I had equal success with all of the timer settings as well. Even though I cannot say how much this diffuser humidifies the air in our home, it’s better than nothing and makes my house smell wonderful when using it. Although you cannot adjust the amount of mist output, vary the color of light, or cycle the mist on and off like you can using the H2EO diffuser, it is half the price of the H2EO, it has a larger tank and therefore runs longer, and diffuses more of the water and oil. The biggest question is this: Is the Miu Aroma Diffuser built to last? Since it is on par with the build quality of my Now Solutions Ultrasonic Oil Diffuser, I am a little wary – but only time will tell.
I’ve used this frequently and thoroughly enjoy using it to diffuse my essential oils. It has a nice capacity and I like the adjustable running times, which work well.
Source: The sample used in this review was provided by Miu Color. Please visit www.miucolor.com for more information or Amazon to purchase it for $38.99.