Cold Remedies

Neti Pot
Neti Salts
Nutribiotic Grapefruit Seed Extract
Mushroom Wisdom by Mai-Take D-Fraction
Organic Calendula Tea
Epsom Salts
Food-Grade Hydrogen Peroxide
Baking Soda
Jo Malone Lime, Basil & Mandarin Cologne
Alexander Wang Yoga Mat
Natural Calm
Juice Press Green Juice
Liquiteria KillerXX

You guys have fun last week?  We bet you did. We’re also betting that all of that going out on a weeknight, getting…err… “over-served” at the bar, and maybe even kissing strangers on Halloween (if a Super Mario runs into a Princess Peach, who is going to stand in the way of fate?!), has led to what Derek Zoolander would call a case of the Black Lung. And with 90% of your office showing up to work no matter how sick they’re feeling, it seems you can also look forward to ping-ponging the common cold/flu/and other Contagion scenarios back and forth from now until Spring 2014. What kind of friends would we be (and we’re friends, right?) if we made you go at it alone? We combed the Top Shelves of our nearest and dearest to give you the smart-girl’s guide to getting over it.

Irrigate: It's no wonder the Neti Pot resembles Aladdin’s Lamp, because it will grant the only wish you have right now—clearing your sinuses. Otherwise known as a “nasal irrigation system,” this not-for-the-faint-of-heart (or nose) remedy involves pouring distilled water into one nostril and draining it out of the other. Use it with new and/or sterilized hot water like Maria Muñoz, or try the Ranjana Khan method of adding a spoonful of Neti-Salt and irrigating daily to ward off illness, clear the sinuses, and "de-puff" your face. Khan’s face yoga should also help to speed up the drainage process.

Supplemental Coursework: After Topaz Page-Green told us “I never, ever get sick in the winter, and I swear it’s because of Nutribiotic GSE Grapefruit Seed Extract,” we bought in bulk. Add a few drops of this vitamin-C-packed gel to your morning orange juice, and up the dosage when you feel a tickle in your throat. The flavor is intense, so as an alternative, try putting ten drops onto a spoon, followed by a quick swig of OJ. When TPG really doesn’t want “flus or cold to make a dent,” she takes Mushroom Wisdom by Maitake D-Fraction, which effectively sets your white blood cells to “turbo” (or so it promises), giving your immune system that competitive edge.

Put Yourself Out There: Avoid virus-spreading opportunities by properly arming yourself for public spaces. Everything from subways to doorknobs are your enemies. So before you apply hand sanitizer with abandon, arm yourself with AirborneTory Burch does not get on those viral/bacterial cesspools known as 'airplanes' without it.

The Hot Stuff: If you’re staying home (or, more likely, schlepping to the office), make like Liz Goldwyn and pour yourself a twee, bacteria-terrorizing cup of calendula tea—you’re effectively giving a bouquet of get-well-soon flowers to your body by way of throat-soothing and sinus-moving hot water. Or, get your voice back with hot water and lemon, a natural antiseptic that includes nearly half of your day’s recommended vitamin C intake. It’s the Miranda Kerr way.

The Life Aquaticphor: So there’s this new thing called Aquaphor. Kidding! The panacea of beauty balms employed as eyeshadow by Jessica Stam, lip balm by Vanessa Traina and Langley Fox, under-eye cream by Emily Ratajkowski, and just about anything by Catherine Walsh and Drew Barrymore (who both “can’t live” without it), is especially ideal come cold season. If you’ve been blowing your nose, washing your face, or are generally stayin' alive in this new, not-so-friendly climate, your skin is probably a little raw. Apply the cure-all around your nose, like Valentine Fillol Cordier, or anywhere else you have dry spots and irritation for instant and overnight relief.

Bath Time: The cheapest and most universal detox, Epsom salts can be found on the bathtub ledges of Phoebe TonkinTopaz Page-Green, and Liv Tyler, the last of whom adds either baking soda or an entire bottle of hydrogen peroxide to the mix when she or her son is sick, to sweat everything out. Says Tyler, “I learned about it from a hippie-natural-amazing pediatrician.” Sounds good to us.

The Pick-Me Up: Lane Crawford fashion director Sarah Rutson was onto something when she told us that she wears Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin even when she’s “at home sick by myself… It lifts my spirit.” Keep in mind that, as awful as you feel, some of it is mental. Rutson’s sophisticated, woodsy citrus spray, or any of your favorite fragrances, will remind you to breath a little deeper, and at least help you feel a little more pulled together.

Comme des F*** Down: You know what doesn’t help your immune system? Stress. Aside from clearing your head with meditation, yoga also massages your organs to keep everything running at tip-top speed. And you can dress the part of Ultimate Flu Fighter with this crocodile-embossed Alexander Wang Yoga Mat. Then, before going to bed, congratulate yourself with a night cap of the Topaz Page-Green favorite Natural Calm—a magnesium-rich anti-stress drink that can accompany your glass of wine.

Go Green: Respect your elders—in this case, the insanely cool, 92-year-old Iris Apfel, who told us, “I think more people get sick from over-eating all the wrong things. The body is like a machine—if you don’t put the right [things] into it, it’s not going to work so well.” Read: put down the cold pizza and Halloween candy and pick up a green juice. Juice Press’s Justyna Sroka drinks one every day so she won’t feel “sick or bloated,” and Moon Juice’s Amanda Chantal Bacon says she “hasn’t been sick” since she added (key word: added) them to her daily diet. If and when germs get the best of you, turn to Liquiteria’s Killer XX (apple, lemon, ginger, cayenne, and echinacea) for a body-shock of vitamins and sinus-clearing spice. Our desks are littered with them.  

Good luck out there, friends. Wash your hands, and, when in doubt: hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

Photos by Mathea Millman. 

Neti Pot, Neti-Salt, Grapefruit Seed Extract, Maitake D-Fraction, Calendula Tea, Lemon, Epsom Salt, Baking Soda, and Natural Calm courtesy of Whole Foods

Let’s Talk About It! JOIN IN
  • Amanda Hamman

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    Useful & helpful post with ideas I haven't heard before!


  • Molly

    Ahh, this is perfection. And it might just be me, but all I could think of when I saw the netipot box was Wayne's World-- ancient Chinese secret, huuhhh?

  • catherine

    Don't forget about humidifiers!!

  • tabgirl

    Never, never use plain tap water to irrigate sinuses with a neti pot. Use only distilled or water that has been boiled and cooled first.

  • Guest

    The neti pot is disgusting. Period. I have found, however, that zinc lozenges such as Cold-Eeze, work wonders. You have to start taking them as soon as you feel sick, though.

    • bluesky557

      Zinc is the only thing that works for me. I don't bother with fancy lozenges, I just take a straight up zinc supplement. And you're right, you have to take it the second you feel the least bit sick.

  • hollygoeslightly22

    The neti pot is not pretty. It's a messy, gross process, however, it is effective if used regularly. It calms the sinuses down & reduces inflammation. Someone pointed out that you should not use tap water - they're right. Boil the water and add 1 tsp of salt.

    Also, I was talking to my dentist about how I started using a tongue scraper (also, gross - yet, effective) and he said it helps reduce the bacteria and germs that sit on the tongue which prevents colds/infection.

  • k8

    the neti pot is the bee's knees, it's actually pretty easy to use and not as gross as it might seem once you get used to it

  • Zoe

    A.Wang yoga mat? Being given that would bring me out of my sickness full stop.

  • Siobbahn

    Two words: Elderberry Syrup. it's not just homeopathy -- clinically proven to work, honest.

  • allyouneedisblush

    This was posted just in time for my annual cold... it must be fate! I am a firm believer that there is nothing the Neti Pot and a Diptyque candle can't cure.

  • MadamPince

    Tea, tea, tea. Regular black/orange pekoe or herbal, all winter long. Also a lot of aspirin. Thanks for the bath idea, BTM!

  • ThisTrendThatTrend

    Seriously- I just started feeling a tickle in my throat / slight soreness, luckily I had some "master cleanse" Suja juice (lemon, water, cayenne, and maple syrup), hopefully that, plus centrum, plus zinc does the trick *fingers crossed*. Any suggestions before its too late and I sound like an 80 year old 5 pack a day smoker?

  • Ally Jane

    And when all else fails...make a cure-all chicken soup!

  • tigerlily

    Source Naturals -Wellness Formula, best stuff ever!

  • daggerpaws

    Does anyone have the Alexander Wang yoga mat? I'd love to get it, but I'd really like to read some reviews first and the internet is strangely deficient. Thanks, ITG!


Alexander Wang
Himalayan Institute
Himalayan Institute
Jo Malone London
Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Cologne
Nutribiotic GSE Grapefruit Seed Extract
Airborne On the Go!
Aquaphor Healing Ointment
Dr. Teal's
Eucalyptus Epsom Salt Relax
Natural Vitality
Natural Vitality – Natural Calm Orange
Juice Press
Juice Press Mother Earth
Mushroom Wisdom
Mushroom Wisdom by Mai-Take D-Fraction
Baking Soda
O-W & Company
Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide
Celebration Herbals
Calendula Tea