Sneezing. Stuffy nose. Itchy, water eyes. Coughing.
Those with allergies know these symptoms all too well. But just because you suffer from outside doesn’t mean you have to suffer inside the comforts of your own home. And with the right hypoallergenic household products, you can make your home a safe, hypoallergenic haven.
1. Hypoallergenic Soaps
When people think of allergens, they tend to only think about respiratory irritants, such as dust mites and pollen. But don’t forget about skin irritants. Those can be just as bad and annoying.
So whether you’ve got skin allergies or just sensitive skin, you need to use soaps containing only natural ingredients, meaning they’re free of fragrances and other allergens that can cause allergic reactions and skin irritation. Hypoallergenic soaps won’t cause rashes, and they won’t make any skin reactions you already have worse.
Some of the best bar and hand soap brands for sensitive skin include Aveeno, Dove and Cetaphil. Soaps made with olive oil are another great choice. Olive oil moisturizes skin and can help soothe and heal irritated skin with its antioxidant properties.
2. Natural Cleaning Products
Keeping your home free of dust, pollen, pet dander and other allergens as best you can is crucial in reducing your allergies. But the chemicals found in most of the cleaning products at the store can be just as harmful to you. That’s why it’s best to buy natural or green cleaning products.
But don’t just buy anything that says hypoallergenic or natural. Read labels before buying something. You can also look for cleaners marked with the Green Seal of Approval, which means they’re good for you and the environment, or use EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning to learn what all-purpose, bathroom, kitchen, furniture and other hypoallergenic household cleaners pass the graded test for being safe and effective.
If you’re not finding any products you like or that work for you, make your own. Vinegar and water make a great window cleaner, and lemon juice and vegetable oil can be used to polish furniture.
3. Vacuum with a HEPA Filter
A good vacuum is another cleaning tool you want in your closet. But not just any vacuum will do. For those of you with allergies, you need a vacuum that has a High Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filter. HEPA filters are mechanical air filters that push air through a thin mesh that traps irritating and damaging particles, like dust mites and pet dander, rather than blowing it out into the air for you to breathe in. Look for one that’s certified by the Allergy and Asthma Foundation of America, too.
4. Air Quality Products
Indoor air quality can affect your allergies just as much, if not more, than outdoor air quality. To make sure your home’s indoor air quality is healthy and maintains safe humidity levels, you need three things:
- Air purifier — Clears dust, smoke and other allergens from the air.
- HEPA air filter — Rids your home of dust and other allergens.
- Dehumidifier — Keeps the air in your house dry and reduces the risk of mold. It’s recommended to keep your home’s humidity level between 35-50% for your comfort and to control allergens, like mold and dust mites that thrive on moisture.
5. Bamboo Bedding
This one may be the most important, especially since you spend 7-8 hours (or you should) in your bed every night. And the easiest way to allergy-proof your bedroom is swapping your current bedding for bamboo bedding. Bamboo is naturally hypoallergenic, has natural deodorizing properties and doesn’t absorb your body’s sweat or oils. All of that means your bamboo bed sheets and pillowcases won’t collect common allergens, so you can breathe and sleep peacefully throughout the night and wake up feeling refreshed and clear every morning.