Whether you work in an office, work from home, or you’re crammed into a dorm room, there’s a good chance you spend a lot of time at your desk. The typical workday is eight hours and frankly, we think the place where we spend 1/3 of our day should be comfortable. That means a supportive chair, bright lighting, and a temperature that is neither too hot nor too cold. If you share a workspace with other people and don’t have control of the thermostat, or you want to cool your workspace without freezing out your entire home, you need a desk fan.
A desk fan is a personal fan that can be used to make your working environment a place where you’re alert and focused, not the spot where you fall asleep on your keyboard because Dave in accounting likes the office at 82 degrees. Whether your office is stuffy and needs some air movement or gets warm in the afternoon, a small desk fan can make a big difference to your comfort level.
What To Look For In A Desk Fan
Know your company’s rules. Some offices don’t allow outside fans to be brought in or they don’t allow units that have heating properties.
Consider your space. If you have limited desk space, a fan that has a large footprint may not be the best fit. A taller, thinner fan could be a better option.
Be conscious of the noise level. For those who work from home, a fan with some white noise may help block out distractions. However, if you share an office, a silent fan is a more considerate option for your co-workers.
How We Chose the Best Desk Fans
We like using desk fans in our home, including our bedroom and living room. Not only are desk fans great for small spaces, but they also help to localize the airflow to a set area, meaning you can be cool in bed while your partner enjoys the warm side of the mattress. The desk fans we’ve included on our list are great options for home and office use. We’ve included fans that span a wide price range, making it easy to find the fan (or fans) that best suit your needs.
Stop fighting with the thermostat and pick up a small desk fan that will keep you cool all day and night.
1. Honeywell HTF090B Turbo on the Go Personal Fan
For a fan that can go with you no matter where your desk is located, we like the Honeywell HTF090B Turbo on the Go Personal Fan. The lightweight and compact fan is battery or USB-powered, throwing off 250 Watts of air circulation power whether you’re next to an outlet or working outside. Small but mighty, the Honeywell has three feet of air circulation, meaning you’ll stay cool without bothering your desk mate. The Honeywell comes with a U-shaped stand that can double as a handle, allowing users to stand, carry or hang the fan.
Pros: Compact design, circulates air, can be used wirelessly.
Cons: Users must supply their own batteries and the Honeywell focuses more on air circulation compared to air cooling.
2. SmartDevil Small Personal USB Desk Fan
At only 6 ounces, the SmartDevil Small Personal USB Desk Fan is a great option for anyone who wants a fan that can travel with them from desk to desk. Available in three colors, the SmartDevil has a 360-degree tilt to help users find the ideal angle for their desk setup. The USB-powered fan is designed to be ultra-quiet, making it a great option for everywhere from the office to the nursery. The SmartDevil offers three levels of power for users to choose from and is compatible with AC adapters and car chargers.
Pros: Three speed options, ultra-quiet, lightweight, and very portable.
Cons: The SmartDevil must be plugged in to work.
3. Lasko FBA 2004W 2-Speed Clip Fan
Need to place a fan in an awkward position? Say no more. With the Lasko FBA 2004W 2-Speed Clip Fan, adding air circulation just about anywhere is as easy as clipping the Lasko’s ultra-strong clip to a table, rod, cabinet, mirror or just about anywhere else. The Lasko is powered by an electric cord and gives users two speeds to choose from. The spring-loaded clip securely holds the fan in place while the 6-inch blades help to push out a cool breeze. The fan can easily be tilted or pivoted to the ideal angle and users can rest assured that their unit is safe thanks to its ETL listed, fused safety plug.
Pros: Can be clipped to hold in awkward spots, two power settings, safety rates.
Cons: The Lasko must be plugged in to work, which may limit where users can place the fan.
4. Vornado VFAN Mini Classic Personal Vintage Air Circulator Fan
For a fan that will not only improve airflow in your space but also add a fun design element, we like the Vornado VFAN Mini Classic Personal Vintage Air Circulator Fan. The Vornado, which is available in several colors and has several bases to choose from, has a look that is straight from the 1940s with technology that works in the 2020s. The adjustable tilting head allows users to direct airflow, while two speed settings mean users will always get the amount of air circulation they need. The Vornado features twin air cones and deep-pitched propeller blades. Sturdy metal construction adds to the durability of the Vornado, which can also be paired with the company’s smaller pivot fan or junior vintage fan.
Pros: Stylish design, durably made, includes two power settings.
Cons: At 8 pounds, the Vornado is the heaviest fan on a list, which may be a con for some users.