Healthy Body

How to help hay fever naturally – the at-home hacks and products we love

Emma Harpham, Editor  |   5 Jul 2024

It almost feels unfair, doesn’t it? The summer finally starts to finally roll around, but before we know it, so many of us end up with streaming noses and eyes thick with pollen, whilst finding ourselves stifling sneezes far too frequently.

The good news – if we’re dealing with any of these symptoms come hay fever season, there’s a lot we can do ourselves, at home, to minimise the impact in a more natural way.

We’ve gathered the internet’s best tips for how to help hay fever naturally, and we’ve also asked over the desks here at TRB HQ, for our team’s personal pointers and support products for banishing the pollen.

Let’s get into it.

Firstly, what causes hay fever symptoms?

Hay fever, also known as seasonal allergic rhinitis, happens when your immune system has an overzealous reaction to pollen – mistaking it for a harmful substance.  

This immune system reaction is accompanied by the release of histamines, and this is what causes the unpleasant symptoms associated with hay fever.

How to help hay fever naturally

Natural, at-home tips and products can be surprisingly effective at combating this response, though.

They’ll often help you feel better in yourself compared to medications and antihistamines which, although helpful, can cause side effects like drowsiness, headaches, and a dry mouth.

Plus, natural hacks can become a soothing addition to your daily routine, and are safe to use in the long term.

Here are our top five recs.

1. Try anti-inflammatory, antioxidant diet swaps

Ginger is super well-known for its anti-inflammatory properties, and it can also help relieve nasal congestion and other symptoms associated with hay fever. Our team swears by morning ginger shots for relief, and ginger tea is thought to have the same effect. 

I personally love this one by Pukka with added turmeric and galangal, for a warming kick.

There may also be some benefit to loading up on vitamin C-rich foods, too – think oranges, grapefruit, lemon, and lime. Studies suggest that these citrus fruits can help decrease hay fever symptoms through their high antioxidant content.

How to help hay fever naturally ginger

You could also try out a low-histamine diet. There’s less evidence to back this one up, but it is thought that fresh, local, unprocessed foods with lower histamine levels might help reduce hayfever symptoms.

Can local honey help hay fever?

You might’ve heard of this one, but – and we’re sorry – it’s likely to be an old wives tale. 

As convenient a natural remedy as it sounds, studies have largely found no link between eating local honey and improved hay fever symptoms. This study did find that honey consumption in high doses might offer some symptom support, but more research is needed to prove the effects.

Unprocessed local honey is an absolute super food though, so don’t let us put you off enjoying a dab in your tea or drizzled on warm bread!

2. Explore natural supplements for hay fever

Along with trying a few diet tweaks, you might also be interested in natural supplements for hay fever. 

Studies show that chamomile, elderflower, and nettle supplements may help those with a sensitivity to pollen, as well as dust and other airborne allergens, by reducing inflammation. We’ve got our eye on the Summertime Capsules from Napiers, for this kind of potent, herbal support.

Quercetin is another key nutrient that has been found to balance histamine levels and help with respiratory symptoms through supplementation. For this, we recommend the Quercetin & B5 Complex by Viridian Nutrition for its highly absorbable, vegan formulation.

Natural supplements for hay fever napiers

Another natural ingredient to try is black seed, which has been shown to reduce congestion. Our top pick? The 100% Organic Black Seed Oil by Viridian Nutrition.

3. Focus on pollen prevention

And no, we don’t mean you have to hide inside all day – although this can be a great last resort when the pollen count is very high!

Simple tweaks like keeping your windows closed, and wearing sunglasses outside, can both help to physically protect you from breathing in pollen and getting it in your eyes and nose.

For more topical protection, we love the Haymax Pure Organic Drug Free Pollen Barrier Balm 5ml, available from Holland&Barrett, for use on and inside the nostrils. 

Made from natural ingredients, this award-winning hay fever balm is invisible and helps trap pollen that would otherwise travel up the nasal tract. 

It’s also gentle enough for use around the eyes and has a similar protective effect, preventing itchiness.

Natural Hayfever Barrier Balm Organic

I’ve personally been using this one since I was about 14, and it’s fab for grab and go support. 

4. Purify your space 

Looking for a more high-tech natural solution? We’ve found that investing in an air purifier can work wonders for keeping symptoms at bay, and our Content Manager Hollie swears by the Philips 2000i Series Air Purifier for use at home.

In the office, we’ve got a mini humidifying desk diffuser going every day in peak hay fever season. It’s a less pricey option that we find has a similar effect to an air purifier.

We love popping peppermint essential oil in – our go-to is the Peppermint Organic Essential Oil by Tisserant – for added respiratory relief.

Air Purifyer For Hayfever Philips

Speaking of, well, moisture – taking a steamy shower at the end of the day will not only help you breathe a little easier but also let you wash pollen out of your hair.

Make this step a non-negotiable if you’re struggling with hay fever at night. 

5. For itching, make a cold compress

How to stop itchy eyes from hay fever? Eyedrops can help, but if you’re looking for natural relief, you might want to try a cold compress.

Cold compresses work by restricting blood flow to the affected area, which can help numb discomfort and reduce itching and swelling.

All you need is a clean cloth. Soak it in cold water (I also swear by soaking it in cold chamomile tea for an extra soothing effect) and apply over closed eyes. Read up on making cold compresses at home for more on their uses and benefits – they’re pretty versatile! 

Let us how you get on with these hacks for how to help hay fever naturally. Pop us a DM over on Instagram if you’ve got any tips you swear by that we haven’t mentioned – we’d love to hear them.

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