6 desk fans that actually help cool you down and beat the heat this summer

Our top picks to keep cool while you're in office mode

russell hobbs scandi wood effect desk fan on a desk with a computer
(Image credit: Russell Hobbs)

Whether you're short on floorspace or are simply in need of a quick fix to beat the heat, a desk fan is the perfect solution marrying portability and cooling ability. Often cheaper than a traditional tower or pedestal fan, a desk fan is the ideal companion to prop on your desk while you work from home or on your bedside table to help you sleep during those sweltering summer nights.

While some may turn their noses up at smaller fans, thinking they're not as effective as their larger counterparts, some of the best fans we've tried and tested here at Ideal Home are desk fans at their core, having rightfully earned a top spot in our buying guide because of their portability, size, and power.

As temperatures continue to rise in the UK, it's well worth having a desk fan on hand that you can easily whip out and move between rooms and assist in providing bedside comfort when it's too hot to sleep and keeping a kitchen cool during a heatwave.

So, to help you decide on the best desk fan, we've rounded up some of our favourite models to get the ball rolling for you. These include desk fans we've tested in detail, editor's favourites, as well as highly-rated products loved by shoppers nationwide.

Best desk fans 2024

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Are desk fans expensive to run?

Generally, desk fans are not that expensive to run and will set you back just pennies to keep it on for a couple of hours; however, the exact cost of running a fan (desk fan or not) will entirely depend on several different factors such as wattage, size, and power source. If your desk fan requires it to be plugged into an outlet during use, then you can calculate it as you would any other electric fan.

'To work out the cost of running a fan, you need to know how much you pay for one unit of energy (1kw), which should be listed on your energy bill. According to Ofgem, the national average price per pence/kWh of electricity is 24.5p,' explains Andy Kerr, founder of BOXT.

'Next, you need to work out the kW output of your fan. You can do this by checking its wattage, which can be found on the fan or the instruction leaflet. Once you know the wattage, convert this figure into kilowatt-hours by simply dividing the wattage by 1,000. This will reveal the amount of energy your fan uses per hour.'

'Multiply these two figures, the cost of a unit of energy by the kW output of your fan, and that will be how much it costs to run your fan per hour. To work out how much this is costing you per day, you can multiply by how many hours your fan is switched on.'

Are desk fans worth it?

Yes, investing in a desk fan is definitely worth it, especially if you're someone who is often tied down to desk work for the majority of the day because of an office-style job or other creative endeavours.

As long as you've done your research or opted for tried and tested recommendations, chances are you won't be disappointed with your choice to invest in a desk fan. Better yet, you can still own some really great desk fans that won't cost you very much upfront at all to ease you into preparing for a potential greater purchase.

Can you leave a desk fan on overnight?

Generally, yes, you can leave a desk fan on overnight to help make sleeping conditions more comfortable during hot weather. However, it's more advisable you do this with models that require being plugged into a direct outlet or are rechargeable rather than with desk fans that requiring a USB connection so as to not risk overheating.

The Meacofan 650 on a desk with a laptop

(Image credit: Meaco)

A desk fan really is a purchase that will greatly benefit you in the summer months, helping to make WFH conditions more comfortable as well as be a versatile product when moving from room to room amidst soaring temperatures.

Seeing as you can get your hands on some of our top-recommended desk fans for fairly cheap, we don't see any reason why you shouldn't consider adding one to your cooling arsenal this season.

Jullia Joson
Junior Writer

Jullia Joson is a Junior Writer at Ideal Home. She's always loved all things homes and interiors, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Architectural Studies from the University of Nottingham where her love for journalism blossomed following her internship at ArchDaily. Now focused on home tech, Jullia works on writing features and explainers to help people make the most of their home appliance investments. When she isn't writing, she loves exploring the city, coffee shop hopping, and losing hours to a cosy game.