Spring is on its way and while that finally means you can start to strip off the multiple layers of jumpers that were packed on for winter (at least, for some parts of Australia), it also means that allergies are at an all-time high.
During spring, flowers, trees, and grass start to produce pollen that can heighten the symptoms for those with allergies. These symptoms are caused by the body’s immune response to inhaled pollen which results in sneezing, a runny or stuffed nose, and watery or itchy eyes.
Priceline pharmacist Nancy El-Miski said that spring allergies are extremely common and affect around 18 per cent of Australians, which results in approximately 4,500,000 Aussies suffering symptoms of seasonal allergies every single year.
“People that suffer from seasonal allergies can experience a variety of symptoms,” she said.
“Generally, allergies cause your eyes, nose, and face to become, dry, puffy, watery, and itchy. This results in your skin feeling sensitive; therefore, pharmacists recommend make-up and skin care products that relieve skin irritation and have minimal active ingredients.”
While some people use make-up to cover the redness or dryness of allergy symptoms, sometimes make-up can increase the risk of further irritation. Therefore, El-Miski says that generally, pharmacists will recommend medicines that contain antihistamines in the form of oral tablets, nasal sprays, or eye drops.
“Along with your regular routine, you may benefit from incorporating nasal sprays or oral antihistamine medicines to your day,” she said.
“Nasal corticosteroid sprays work by reducing inflammation and swelling in the nose and can be used regularly. Antihistamines tablets can help reduce symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and itchy, irritated eyes.”
Additionally, hypoallergenic skincare and make-up products are a great option for those who want to use skin-friendly make-up and skincare. For over-60s who want to cover their redness but don’t want to pack on layers of make-up, El-Miski says hydration and high coverage are key.
“It is important to start with a hydrating primer,” she said.
“This should be followed by a high-pigment concealer or foundation.”
When it comes to general care against spring allergies, there are plenty of ways you can reduce symptoms just through day-to-day life. For instance, simply reducing your time spent outdoors, particularly on dry or windy days is super important.
The best time to go outside if you have allergies is just after a good rain as most of the pollen would’ve been cleared from the air by then. Lawn mowing and weed pulling aren’t recommended during spring, and neither is hanging clothes outside as pollen has a tendency to stick to sheets and towels.
This article was originally published on September 24, 2020, and has been updated on August 24, 2023.
IMPORTANT LEGAL INFO This article is of a general nature and FYI only, because it doesn’t take into account your personal health requirements or existing medical conditions. That means it’s not personalised health advice and shouldn’t be relied upon as if it is. Before making a health-related decision, you should work out if the info is appropriate for your situation and get professional medical advice.