Vicks Moisture Map Pinpoints Driest Cities

With humidity levels dropping in the U.S. during the winter months, Vicks has launched a Moisture Map on its website, an online tool that it noted was created by a team of scientists to help families understand how too little humidity can create issues for the body, pets and the home. The interactive map pinpoints the top 10 driest cities across the country by synthesizing weather data and geographical data from several sources, according to the company.

“When looking at the top cities in America with the driest air, the Southwest definitely has a cluster due to the desert environment in states like New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona, and Nevada. Even though hot and dry go hand in hand— so does cold and dry— and experts believe the flu season may spike in winter months due to low humidity levels,” said Dr. Ted Myatt, senior scientist with Environmental Health & Engineering and the University of Rhode Island. 

According to Vicks, the top 10 U.S. cities with the driest air:

Albuquerque, NM

Colorado Springs, CO

Denver, CO

Las Vegas, NV

Phoenix, AZ

Tucson, AZ

Minneapolis, MN

Salt Lake City, UT

Ogden, UT

Madison, WI

Data from each source was compiled by Environmental Health & Engineering for the most populated U.S. cities. Data included precipitation data and altitudes of cities. Relative humidity is a measure of the amount of moisture in the air relative to the total amount of moisture that the air at a given temperature and pressure could hold. Colder air holds less moisture than warmer air, which results in low indoor moisture levels in the winter. Similarly, air at higher altitudes holds less moisture, which results in low indoor moisture levels in homes at higher elevations. Scores were determined based upon the data collected and weighted by expert judgment of environmental health researchers.

An additional survey of U.S. moms also found that nearly half of all moms (48%) surveyed own a humidifier and 88% of those believe their health & comfort has improved as a result. Conducted in July 2013, the survey was executed by Lindberg International which collected data via the web from a random sampling of 506 American women with one or more children, ages 0-12, living at home.