May 2019 – Superdrug This is the top of the page.
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May 2019 – Superdrug
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How to spot symptoms, treat and prevent the flu

Getting the flu sucks.  Most people think you’re just moaning about having a cold but in reality, you feel like you’re on deaths door! Flu (or influenza to give it its proper name) can be caught throughout the year, not just in the winter, so listen up. Here’s everything you need to know about the flu and what to do if it pays you a visit.

Air Pollution, Allergy Medicine, Cleaning, Concepts & Topics, Medicine

Is the flu the same as a cold?

Nope! The flu is not the same as the common cold, it’s more severe (so it does warrant a little more sympathy!) The flu is caused by a different group of viruses and the symptoms tend to come on a lot stronger and a lot quicker.

How do you get flu?

You never leave the house without your trusty bottle of anti-bac gel, so how did you catch the flu? We’re sorry to say that even people who actively avoid germy areas (London underground, we’re looking at you) can unfortunately still catch the flu. Sad times. Here’s why…

  • When an infected person sneezes, coughs or blows their nose in public they release tiny droplets containing the virus into the air ready to latch onto someone else.
  • Viruses can live on objects for up to 2 days, so if you’ve touched an infected item – such as a toy, an unwashed glass or a door handle - then touch your face, you can contract the virus.
  • People with the flu can pass it on a day before even their symptoms start. How unfair is that? You won’t even see it coming!

What are the main symptoms?

Flu symptoms can come on very quickly and you may feel any or a combination of the following:

  • A sudden fever at 38 degrees or above
  • Your body will ache
  • Being tired doesn’t come close… you feel exhausted
  • Your throat could be sore
  • A pounding headache
  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Loss of appetite
  • Tummy pain
  • Nausea and being sick


Young woman drinking tea while covered in blanket

Help! How do I get rid of flu?

It could take around a week to feel better after you first contract the flu virus but there’s a few ways in which you can try and speed up the healing process:

  • Rest and sleep (Netflix to the rescue!)
  • Keep warm
  • Take paracetamol or ibuprofen to lower your temperature and to treat aches and pains
  • Keep your fluids topped up by drinking plenty of water and to prevent yourself from becoming dehydrated

How to stop the flu from spreading

The flu is very infectious and can be easily spread, sometimes without you even realising.  To reduce the risk of spreading the virus you can:

  • Wash your hands regularly with warm water and soap
  • Sneeze and cough into a tissue
  • Bin used tissues as soon as possible

Superdrug Flu Jab

During the height of flu season, September to March, you can get the flu jab from your local Superdrug pharmacy or selected Health Promotion Clincs. The jab is developed to protect you against current common strains of the flu. If you’ve been unlucky and have caught the flu, help speed up your recovery with Superdrug’s range of cold & flu medication below.

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3 super easy, healthy recipes

‘You are what you eat’, as we are so often told! Eating a well-balanced, nutritional diet is key to health and happiness! So, if you’re a little unsure on where to start your health kick or you simply want to add some new delicious recipes to your arsenal, you’re in the right place. We’ve teamed up with nutritional expert Charlotte to bring you 3 super-simple, easy and yummy recipes.

1. Pitta Pizzas

Who loves a pizza party? We do! These pitta pizzas are quick and easy to make and taste amazing! No take-away menus required!

Ingredients - to serve 4

4 Wholemeal pittas

2 tablespoons of tomato puree

3 tablespoons water

Selection of pizza toppings e.g.

Tuna, ham, sweetcorn, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, pineapple, olives, spinach leaves

100g cheese of choice – cheddar and mozzarella work well

Pizza collage

How to make your pizzas

Warm the pitas for 30 seconds or so in a toaster

Mix the puree with water and mix well

Spread the tomato puree mix on the warm pitta breads

Select your toppings and spread them out on top of the tomato puree

Add grated cheese to the top, spread it out and pop under the grill for 5 minutes or until they have browned a little and the cheese melted.

Tuck in!

2. Chickpea and Kale/ Spinach One Pot

Healthy, balanced, very quick and you only need to use one pan for this dish, so that means less washing up!

Ingredients – to serve 2

1 teaspoon Extra Virgin Olive Oil

½ a stock cube

1 large clove of garlic, crushed

½ a teaspoon of paprika

1 tablespoon oregano

1 tin of chickpeas drained and rinsed

½ a tin of sweetcorn

1 tin of chopped tomatoes

2 handful of fresh kale or spinach

150mls water

Chickpea 2

How to make your one pot dish

  1. Add the olive oil to a pan and slowly heat
  2. Add the stock cube, garlic, paprika and oregano and stir well for a few seconds on the heat
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir together well
  4. Bring the mixture to the boil with a lid on and then turn the heat to a simmer and cook for 5-10 minutes or until the mixture thickens a little and the kale/spinach has wilted.
  5. Serve with some brown rice or a wholemeal pitta bread

3. No Added Sugar Apple Crumble

All the taste, none of the guilt!

Ingredients – makes 1 crumble to share

700g apples

50g chopped dates

½ teaspoon cinnamon

50mls water


For the topping:

85g wholemeal flour

85g rolled oats

60g butter or soya spread

Zest of half an orange

Apple crumble

How to make your crumble

Preheat the oven to 180℃

Peel all the apples to start

Add 50mls of water to a pan and bring it to the boil

Chop the apples into fairly small chunks and add them to the boiling water as you go (this allows you to get a good mix of well-cooked and harder, more chunky apples in your final dish).

Once all the apples are in the pan, add the cinnamon, ground clove and the dates and turn the heat down slightly. Add a lid to the pan and cook for another 10 minutes or so (you can add a little more water to the pan if necessary).

Once some of the apples are nice and soft, turn the heat to a simmer and remove the lid. Allow any remaining water to evaporate out of the pan and then remove the apple mixture from the heat and add to the bottom of a crumble dish (roughly 20 cm by 20 cm in size, but any will do).

For the crumble topping:

Add the butter, oats and flour into a bowl with the orange zest and mix together using your fingers (or pulse the ingredients together in a food processor).

Once the mixture is a similar texture to breadcrumbs and is mixed all the way through, pour on top of the apples and give the container a little shake to make sure it fills in the gaps.

Pop the crumble in the oven for around 20 minutes or until it goes a nice golden brown on top. Once cooked serve warm with a dollop of natural yogurt and a little orange zest to top.


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Castor oil benefits for hair

We’re pretty lucky, ya know! When it comes to choosing products or ingredients to keep our hair looking sleek, we’re spoilt for choice. Especially when it comes to oils. You’ve got coconut, argan, kukui to name a few, but the oil that’s really enjoying some time in the spotlight when it comes to soft, healthy and nourished hair is castor oil.

What is castor oil?

We get castor oil by crushing and pressing castor oil seeds – simple! It is rich in ricinoleic acid, which boasts amazing anti-inflammatory, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties, which is great if you have a problematic scalp! Alongside this, it also has an impressive vitamin E content, plenty of Omega-6 and Omega-9 fatty acids - all of which are fab for your tresses.

Castor oil with beans on wooden surface

Castor oil benefits for hair

Is your hair lacking shine? Do the ends look like they’ve seen better days? Or is your hair crying out for hydration? If so, castor oil could be what your hair is in need of!

This is how castor oil can benefit your hair:

  • It adds moisture and hydration
  • Add extra shine
  • Strengthens your hair to prevent breaking
  • Improve overall condition
  • Calm an irritated scalp

For our kinks, curls and Afro styled beauties out there, castor oil is especially uh-mazing for your type of hair. Castor oil is typically thicker than other oils and helps traps moisture into the hair, which works wonders if your hair is usually coarser or naturally lacks moisture.

Will castor oil make my hair grow?

Unfortunately, you can’t believe everything you read on the internet! Sure, castor oil will increase the health of your hair and will help towards preventing your ends from snapping off. But, when it comes to actually stimulating your hair follicles to increase growth, there isn’t enough evidence to support this… just yet!

Beautiful african woman drying her hair with a towel in the mirror

How do I use it?

When using neat castor oil, mix it with a more penetrable oil to prevent your hair from being weighed down.  For an at-home treatment, try mixing one part castor oil with five parts of another oil such as olive or argan (and reap the benefits of this oil too!)

Apply the mixture to wet hair, to lock in the moisture, and pay extra attention to applying the majority of the oil to the length of your hair and the ends.

Wash out to reveal super soft, shiny and more manageable hair!

Psstt... as with all oils, when using them in your hair it is best to use it sparingly, especially if you have the fear of greasy hair!


If you don’t fancy applying neat oil straight to your hair, check out some of these castor oil-based products to achieve the same results:

Superdrug Superdrug Castor & Shea Leave-in Conditioning Cream 250ml £5.99 Buy Now
Shea Moisture Shea Moisture Black Castor Oil Conditioner 431ml £12.99 Buy Now
Shea Moisture Shea Moisture Black Castor Oil Hair Mask 340ml £12.99 Buy Now
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Top tips on how to fight a cold

The common cold. Everyone gets them. Nobody likes them! If you’ve been struck down with a case of the sniffles and sneezes, do not despair! Yes, they’re a nuisance but there’s no need for it to get the better of you! Follow these handy tips on how to banish the bugs to get you up and running again in no time.

1. Drink up!

And by drink up, we mean water, not time at the bar! Drinking plenty of water will help replenish any fluid you lose through blowing your nose and sweating. This will also help keep your scratchy throat lubricated if you’re coughing and spluttering.  No one said having a cold was glamorous!

Herbal teas such as ginger, lemon, chamomile and green tea may also help sooth dry, irritated and sore throats. So, you best get the kettle on!

Close up of woman's hand taking a glass of water

2. Take your vitamins

There are some well-known vitamins which can help you in your fight against the cold. Vitamin C is a very common one and can be found in foods such as oranges, kiwi fruits, citrus, broccoli and dark leafy greens* and will help keep your body protected.  You should also get yourself acquainted with zinc, which can decrease the time you suffer with your symptoms. Include zinc rich foods into your diet such as nuts, seeds and beans*.

If these food items aren’t taking your fancy, you can also top up your intake and protect your immune system with Superdrug’s Vitamin C with Zinc supplement.

3. Put your feet up

And that’s the doctor’s orders! Resting is one of the best ways to beat a cold. Keeping busy, running around and going about the daily grind is only going to make you feel worse – no matter how hard you try to keep up!  For the sake of you and your colleagues, take the day off. Germs will spread around an office quicker than gossip from the Christmas party!

Relaxing young woman enjoying her coffee while sitting in bed with book, top view, copy space

4. Avoid comforting eating (as much as you can!)

No matter how much you want to reach for comforting, sugary foods - now is not the time! Foods that are high in fat and sugar can slow down your immune system, which makes it harder to fight off infections.  You need nutrients provided by a balanced diet to help your recovery.

5. Find the right remedy for you

Sometimes nature needs a little support in getting you back on track! That’s why at Superdrug, we have a wide range of cough, cold and flu remedies from tablets to syrups, lozenges to sachets to help you along the way.


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What are the early signs of pregnancy?

Cropped shot of a young woman taking a home pregnancy test

Thinking you could be pregnant can stir up a hole heap of emotions. Excitement. Fear. Happiness. Nervousness. Love. Panic. Joy. The list goes on!  These emotions can be bought on by experiencing early symptoms. If you think you could be pregnant and are not sure what to look out for, these early signs of pregnancy are a good place to start.

You miss your period

The most common sign that you’re expecting is missing your period. If you can count on your period arriving at the same time every month, and it doesn’t arrive, then it’s time to take a test.

Woman holding pregnancy test, New life and new family concept.

Feeling nauseous or being sick

Another tell-tale sign that you are pregnant is an unexplained feeling of nausea, otherwise known as morning sickness. Although, sickness during pregnancy doesn’t discriminate, you can have this feeling any time of the day!

This is caused by new pregnancy hormones flooding your body, leaving some women feeling queasy or actually vomiting.

Being tired, no… exhausted!

Even when your baby is still teeny tiny in size, pregnancy can make you feel drained, exhausted and generally over-tired.  Tired pregnancy isn’t the same as normal tiredness and the best way to deal with it is to listen to your body and try to get more rest.

A Caucasian woman sleeping on her bed

Sore or tender breasts

Due to the extra hormones taking over your body, your breast may begin to change and feel extra sore or tender. They can also feel heavier, and again, this is due to wonderful hormones!

Normal things are starting to smell and taste weird

During the early stages of pregnancy, foods that you loved before may start to become unappealing, they may even repulse you!  This goes for smells too.

In replace of the foods you used to love, you may find yourself craving other foods and it’s not unheard of for women to crave strange combinations! Go with it!

Beautiful pregnant woman eating with lust cereals on breakfast, enjoying meal. Yummy food for pregnant ladies

You need to pee more

Like, all the time! Throughout the day… throughout the night… you will have the urge to urinate, especially as your baby grows.  But during the early stages, if you are going to the loo more than usual, this can be considered an early indicator.

Mood swings

Back to those overwhelming feelings of emotions! In the first 12 weeks of pregnancy your body has a lot more oestrogen and progesterone and it is these hormones which can make you feel extra- emotional!  If you’re laughing and smiling one minute and crying the next, don’t worry! This is just another big sign that you could be carrying a baby.

What to do next?

These are just a few of the symptoms associated with pregnancy. Remember, everyone is different, and every pregnancy is different.

If you are experiencing one or more symptom, then it is time to take a pregnancy test.

If your test is positive, then your next step is to book an appointment with your GP. If you’re test is negative and you are still experiencing symptoms two or three days’ later and your period hasn’t arrived, then this is also a good time to see your GP.

For more information on all thing’s pregnancy, you can visit our dedicated information page below.

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Guys, try this charcoal skincare for blemish free skin

In the last few years charcoal has taken a leap from being your humble BBQ staple (or from burning your bangers) to becoming a regular on the bathroom shelf due to its skin reviving and cleansing properties.

Helping men in their battle against the blemish is L’Oreal’s Men Expert Pure Charcoal skincare range which features a collection of products specially formulated for men to target blocked pores, spots, roughness, blackheads and excess oil.

How does charcoal benefit the skin?

When charcoal based products are applied to the skin, it draws out the impurities and pollution from your pores - working a little like a magnet! The dirt is attracted to the charcoal, instead of being absorbed into it.

In fact, charcoal can attract up to 100 times its own weight in impurities, so it's no wonder it has become such a sought after ingredient!

Picture of handsome man having facial in spa salon

L’Oreal Men Expert Pure Charcoal Range

To banish your blemish blues, give these charcoal-based beauties a go:

L'Oreal Men Expert Pure Charcoal Tissue Mask

Exclusive to Superdrug and made especially for men, this XL sized sheet mask is ideal to use when chilling in the bath or kicking it back on the sofa! It moisturises, mattifies and helps fight excess oil in your skin and gets to work in just 5 minutes. Simply unfold the mask, adjust it to your face and leave it for up 15 minutes to work its magic.

L'Oreal Paris Men Expert L'Oreal Men Expert Mens Charcoal Tissue Face Sheet Mask x1 £3.99 Buy Now
L'Oreal Paris Men Expert L'Oreal Men Expert Pure Charcoal Face Wash Cleanser 100ml £4.99 Buy Now

L'Oreal Men Expert Pure Charcoal Face Wash

If your skin is prone to imperfections such as spots, blackheads, excess oil or marks then this daily face wash will work hard to clear your skin. The jet-black formula, caused by purified charcoal, creates a foamy lather on your skin and digs deep to clear your pores and cleanse your skin.

L'Oreal Men Expert Pure Charcoal Face Scrub

Are your blackheads bothering you? Or do you just want to prevent them from appearing altogether? Then you need to add this face scrub to your daily routine. Gentle enough to use both morning and night but still powerful enough to unleash 2,000 natural particles per use! This is your secret-weapon for tackling blemishes and blackheads.

L'Oreal Paris Men Expert L'Oreal Men Expert Charcoal Face Scrub Exfoliator 100ml £4.99 Buy Now
L'Oreal Paris Men Expert L'Oreal Paris Men Expert Mens Charcoal Clay Face Mask 50ml £6.99 Buy Now

Men Expert Pure Charcoal Clay Mask

This mask teams powerful purified charcoal with naturally absorbent kaolin clay to create a black clay mask that is specifically design for men who love to look after their complexion. Male skin is generally oilier than women’s, so you’ll need something that specifically targets these issues. Pop the clay mask on your face and leave for 10-minutes and let it get to work tackling oil and stubborn, trapped dirt. Simply wash off with warm water to reveal clearer looking skin!

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New born essentials for the royal baby

Welcome to the world Archie Harrison Mountbatten-Windsor

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have welcomed the arrival on their first-born baby!

Breaking away from the usual royal traditions, they opted to reveal little to no details about the pregnancy or the arrival of their new bubba! Surprising the waiting world with the announcement on Monday 6th May, the beaming parents make their first appearance with Archie 2 days later.

Pregnancy and the arrival of a child is such an intimate and special experience, especially for first-timers!  So, fair play to Meghan and Harry wanting to keep the precious first moments and pregnancy details to themselves!

We must admit, playing 'guess the arrival date, guess the gender and guess the name' made it a little more fun for the waiting public!


Photo credit: Chris Allerton ©️SussexRoyal

We’re just sat here hoping that there will be plenty of updates on their Insta page! Who knows, maybe Archie Harrison and his new parents could become big fans of Insta stories. Stranger things have happened!


As first-time parents, we hope that Megs and Harry have everything they need, but for all new parents or parents-to-be, we have compiled a handy shopping list of items you're going to need time and time again!

Must haves for any new parents

Baby wipes

No new mum or dad would step out of the house without a pack of baby wipes or be further than an arm’s reach of them at home.  The fragrance-free options from the My Little Star range are as soft as they come and gentle on your baby’s skin.

Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star Fragrance Free Pure Baby Wipes X64 £0.99 Buy Now
Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star New Mum Disposable Breast Pads £1.29 Buy Now

New mum disposable breast pads

Absorb any excess milk and protect your clothing from wetness and stains with the My Little Star new mum disposable breast pads. You’ll need these for roughly the first 8 weeks of breastfeeding (each new mum will be different) so be sure to stock up.

Cotton wool pads

A great alternative to baby wipes, stock up on cotton wool that’s gentle enough to use from top to toe on your baby. We’re certain this generous pack from My Little Star would get the royal seal of approval for its softness and strength!

Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star Large Cotton Wool Pads 51 £1.99 Buy Now
Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star Nappy Bags x100 £0.99 Buy Now

Nappy sacks

An absolute necessity for any parents for any right royal messes left by your little one! Dispose of nappies safely and hygienically with these strong, lightly fragranced nappy sacks.

Pure Petroleum Jelly

A happy baby = happy mum and dad! So, keep the smile on your little one’s face by soothing your baby’s behind and preventing nappy rash with the My Little Star petroleum jelly. It’s soft texture makes it easy to apply and the pot is the perfect size for popping in your changing bag.

Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star Pure Petroleum Jelly 100ml £1.29 Buy Now
Superdrug My Little Star My Little Star Safety Cotton Buds 50 £0.59 Buy Now

Cotton buds

Gentle clean smaller areas of your little prince or princess such as between their toes, fingers and around their ears, with the My Little Star cotton wool buds. They’re also perfect for applying creams to blemishes but remember never to use inside the ear or nose.

Congratulations again, to The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and the arrival of Archie Harrison and to any new parents or parents-to-be!

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