Your home should be a refuge—a safe place, where you can rest and relax and be soothed. But it’s hard to build the calm sanctuary of your dreams if you can’t stop sniffling and sneezing long enough to make it happen. Or, even worse, if your family members won’t stop huffing and wheezing!
Fortunately, creating the allergen-free paradise of your wildest fancies is all a matter of being strategic and planning out your space, down to the paint on the walls and the flooring you pick. This spring, try these products to plan out your perfect mite, dust, and pollen-free palace—and give yourself and your family the haven you’ve been craving:
Color Your World (with Allergy-Friendly Paint)
The color palette you choose for your home has a huge impact on how you feel. Whether you’re a fan of soothing cool colors or energetic warm ones, the colors don’t matter if your runny, bleary eyes take precedence.
Select an allergy-friendly paint (yes, they exist!) that doesn’t release VOCs, or volatile organic compounds. These solvents, found in most standard paints, are released into the air as paint dries—and can cause those with allergies to run fleeing. However, paints that don’t release VOCs and that dry quickly can limit allergic reactions and help you breathe easy.
You’ll Be Floored (At How Well You Can Breathe!)
Your floor is more than just the biggest shelf in your house. The flooring and floor coverings you select can have a huge impact on the quality of the air in your home. Again—you want to find floorings that have low VOC emissions, and that won’t play host to dust mites, mold, or mildew. For many allergy-sufferers, that rules out carpeting. Tile, laminate, bamboo, or cork can all be good choices.
And if you love floor coverings, but quake in fear at the idea of big area rugs full of allergens, bamboo floor mats can be a great way to bring in some style (without making you sniffle).
Good Night, Dust Mites
Bedding and other soft accessories (think: throw pillows) can harbor dust mites and can keep you tossing and turning and struggling to breathe. Clear up your allergens by using a mattress cover and consider pillow covers if your nighttime tossing is truly terrible.
You should also put some thought into the sheets and blankets you’re selecting. Natural, breathable, undyed materials like organic cotton can stand up to hot water washing, but are still comfortable and soft.
Consider a portable air cleaner to keep your indoor air clean and healthy. However, make sure the model you select actually eliminates allergens with a filter, rather than just sending them back into the air.
If your kids are allergy-sufferers (or if their stuffed animal collection is giving you cause for concern), look for hot water washable asthma-friendly toys. By washing them regularly, they’ll be far less likely to harbor colonies of dust mites.
Want to go whole-hog and build a truly allergen-free paradise? Household items like vacuum cleaners, cleaning products, and even washing machines have been reworked to be especially useful at preventing or removing allergens from your environment.
If spring is less “sunshine and daisies” and more “sneeze and sniffles” for you and your family, then take action. Make this the season you improve your indoor air quality, cut down on allergens, and build the allergy-friendly oasis of your dreams.