Mosquito Repellents

This week I found not only my PJs but also my pillow had become home to mosquitoes. Not the nicest thing to find when your head hits the pillow it has to be said.

Being someone mosquitoes love to snack on and knowing that bites and stings are a lymphoedema risk, it seems it is that time of year again when I need to find ways to keep the little buggers away from me.

citronella-candleHere a few things I know work and a few new ones that are worth a try:

  1. On my affected arm swap the E45 and Argan oil combo to Avon – Skin so Soft, which contains citronella.
  2. Get out the citronella tealights and start using those instead of my regular scented candles.
  3. Get some more lavender, rosemary, lemon grass and marigolds planted up in the garden.
  4. When opening windows in my bedroom remember to use the fly screens too.
  5. Cook with garlic more.
  6. Get out my mosquito swatter just in case.
  7. Make sure there’s no standing water inside or out.
  8. Cook with soy bean oil.
  9. Cut down or cut out perfumed products, especially when going outside.
  10. Wear long sleeved, light coloured tops with a tight weave.
  11. Avoid excessive exercise particularly at dawn and dusk when mosquitoes are out. Sweat, carbon dioxide and warmer body temperatures are also very attractive to them.

(Source: Amelia Island Mosquito Control)

Medicine Cabinet

cabinetAs with the pocket first aid kit, finding a medicine cabinet for the house, which looked nice but could also hold a whole host of bits and pieces took quite a while. In the end I found this one from The Holding Company.

It’s white-painted metal with a chrome handle and can be fitted to the wall vertically, horizontally, with the door opening on the left, right or from above. It doesn’t have a lock though so I’ve put it quite high up on the wall out of the reach of little hands.

I have to say it looks really cool and it’s just the right size for everything I need to keep to close to hand, without looking too imposing.

First Aid On The Go

One of the first things I bought myself after leaving hospital was a first aid bag. I particularly wanted something that was small enough to fit in a handbag but big enough to hold everything I needed – a bit of a tall order, which is why it took me some time to find one I liked.


I eventually found this one on eBay and in it I keep:

  • After Bite stick (for mosquito bites and wasp stings)
  • Blister plasters
  • Ibuprofen tablets
  • Plasters
  • Insect repellent wipes
  • Co-Codamol tablets
  • Antiseptic wipes
  • Paracetamol tablets
  • Tweezers
  • Lip Salve

The peace of mind it gives me is absolutely priceless so I make sure I always have it with me whenever I go out.

Argan Oil

argan oilHere’s one for my shopping list today: Argan Oil. It was my breast care nurse who first mentioned it to me as something that could help with the healing of scar tissue.

The benefits of Argan Oil:

The active substances called triterpenoids that occur in Argan Oil offer amazing skin protection benefits. These include tissue healing (scars), anti-inflammatory, sun-protective and disinfectant properties.

The oil contains 80% unsaturated fatty acids and is more resistant to oxidation than olive oil. Argan oil also contains 0.8% unsaponifiables (a large group of compounds also known as plant sterols or sterolins). Sterolins improve skin metabolism, reduce inflammation and promote excellent moisture retention.

It is helpful for lowering cholesterol levels, stimulating circulation and strengthening the body`s natural immunity.

Source: Natural News

How to use Argan Oil on the body?

You can use Argan oil alone or in combination with your favorite body lotion by adding a few drops to each application.

  • After a bath or a shower, rub a 1-2 drops in your palms to warm the oil up
  • Apply to damp, still moist skin
  • Apply Argan oil to entire body including feet and hands
  • Gently massage until absorbed
  • Enjoy your smooth soft skin!

Source: Argana Vita

Suntan Lotion

So the advice is to protect our skin, and that includes making sure we don’t get sun burnt. Breast Cancer Care UK recommend we use a sunscreen with a high sun protection factor (SPF) of 15 or above, and say we need to remember to apply it even under our clothes as it’s possible to become sun burnt through certain clothing.


Source: Breast Cancer Care UK

I have bought and tried both Nivea Sun Screen (SPF) 15 and Riemann P20. Out of the two I prefer Nivea, (which seems to be more readily available anyway) as the spray bottles make application much easier. The Riemann one is incredibly runny and can stain things yellow if you’re a bit too liberal with it. Despite that, Riemann P20 does claim to offer 10 hours of protection with just one application which lets face it, can be pretty useful.

Gloves and Sleeves

plantoBefore, I wouldn’t think twice about the odd scratch or burn here and there but now I have to try to be a bit more mindful about what I’m doing around the home. So I’ve bought myself a pair of washing up gloves, extra long oven mitts and arm protectors for gardening just to be on the safe side.

Apart from washing up gloves, which you can pick up pretty much anywhere, it did take a bit more hunting to find the others. In the end Amazon came up trumps with gardening sleeves by Planto, which have Velcro straps so I can adjust them to the size of my arm and are super thick, so I know I’m going to get good protection from any nasty rose thorns.

I  couldn’t find any extra long oven gloves that I liked on the high street so in the end took the plunge and bought a silicone pair from Amazon. Luckily they turned out to be super comfy and the cover nearly my entire arm. Result!

  • Washing up gloves
  • Gardening gloves and arm protectors
  • Extra long oven gloves or mitts
  • Thimble for sewing

Dry Skin Brushing

Dry skin brushing is great for getting our lymph moving but also for reducing the appearance of cellulite and it gives us a bit of a detox too (so double bonus points).

Dry brush your skin ideally after exercising but before you take a bath or a shower.