Fun Ways to Keep Cool

Fun Ways to Keep Cool This Summer

It’s finally here. Summer. The season we’ve waited for all year. Those long, lazy hot weather days we’ve been dreaming about are here, and well, now we’re feeling a little sweaty. And lazy. And we just don’t want to expend a whole lot of energy doing much of anything at all. Much less keeping cool.

But there are so many fun and easy ways to cool down while you chill out this summer. Here a few of our favourite ways to keep cool when the temperature soars.

Play in the Spray

You’ve seen inflatables decorating the neighbourhood during the holidays. Now they’ve found new purpose in the summertime: as sprinklers. That’s right, these inflatable sprinklers aren’t just cute, they’re also functional, and will bring out the play while you get your spray on.

 

Keep cool in an inflatable kayakGo Boating

A cool sea-breeze may be just the thing you need to cool down, and you can search for the best coastal breezes in your single-seat kayak. Get paddling!

 

 

Keep Cool with a Pool FloatieOr Floating

If the pool is your preference, bring your A-game with a fun and funky floatie for you, or for the whole gang! Splish splash!

 

 

Keep Cool with a Sun UmbrellaMake Some Shade

Sometimes you’ve just got to sit down and relax. But if you want it made in the shade, and your yard has other ideas, you’ll need to create your own little shady spot with a sun umbrella that’ll make lounging a lot less sweaty.

 

 

Keep Your Drinks CoolPack a Cooler

There’s nothing like an ice cold drink on a hot day, but keeping it cool can be a challenge. And going inside for a refill isn’t always feasible, especially if you’re spending the day at the park or the beach. That’s why packing a cooler is essential — whether it’s a single-serving thermal jug or a jumbo cooler on wheels so your friends can join the fun. Just don’t forget the ice packs!

 

Check out our outdoor living guide for more ways to have fun — and keep cool — in the sun.

Tips to Make Your Summer Road Trip Awesome

How to make your summer road trip awesome

You can already hear the chorus and you haven’t even left home yet, “Are we there yet?”

If you’re contemplating a summer road trip with the family, you’re probably both excited and a bit apprehensive. After all, summer road trips are great for memory building, but they can also bring out a whole lot of whining if you’re not adequately prepared. That’s why we’ve gathered some tips to help you make your summer road trip the best kind of memorable.

Safety First

Before heading out on the road, make sure your car is road worthy. Get your fluids topped up, do an oil change and check your tires and air filters. You may want to get a safety inspection done to minimize the chances of a car breakdown mid-trip. Also, put together an emergency travel kit with any first aid supplies you might need.

Stock up on Snacks

Stock up on snacks for the long haul so you can minimize having to pull over for less-than-healthy food. Granola bars, rice cakes, nut mixes, crackers, dried fruit — these will all hold up well over long distances and hot temperatures. While you’re stocking up, set aside a bag for recycling so you can save your wrappers and bring them back to London Drugs. And don’t forget to fill a bunch of water bottles. You can freeze them the night before you leave so they’ll stay cold the next day.

Bring the Entertainment

All great road trips need great tunes and fun games. Before you leave, make a playlist with songs everyone in the family will enjoy. Then, load your smartphone with apps and your car with games that’ll keep all your passengers busy and well entertained. You could even try some good old fashioned games like i-spy or round robin to while away the time.

Make it Comfy

Long hours in a car are made infinitely easier with some of the comforts of home, like pillows, blankets and kids’ favourite stuffies and toys. Passenger window sunshades can be helpful to shield sensitive eyes from the bright sun and a windshield sunshade will keep the car cool when you’re out exploring.

Get Travel Insurance

Whether you’re staying close to home or travelling further afield, you never know when illness or accidents might happen. Ensure you’re covered in case of emergency with travel insurance for you and your family.

With all this taken care of, you’re almost ready to hit the road, Jack! Pack light, plan your route, and get ready to have the road trip of a lifetime!

Must-Have Barbecue Basics

‘Tis the season for outdoor cooking! And there’s something so special about food cooked on an open grill, isn’t there? It’s not only a sign that summer is here, but also an invitation to finally indulge in those long, hot days capped off with dinner on the grill and the lingering summer nights we’ve been craving all year long.

But before you bust out the burgers and buns, here’s a helpful checklist to make sure you’ve got everything you need to get your grill on.

Must-have BBQ Basics

Essential Grilling Tools Checklist

The Grill

There are two main types of grills to choose from: those fueled by charcoal and those fueled by gas. Purists will say that charcoal is the way to go for authentic-tasting grilled meals, but propane can definitely be more convenient, as long as you’re stationary. If grilling on the go is what you’re after, then go for a charcoal grill.

Learn more about our grill options.

Grilling Tools

You don’t need to go too crazy when it comes to grilling tools, but there are a few essentials every BBQ master should have in their arsenal:

  • Tongs — You’ll reduce the chances of losing delicious food through the grill slots if you invest in a solid pair of tongs.
  • Meat thermometer — Don’t take any risks — make sure your meat is always perfectly cooked
  • Grill brush — Finally, it’s always a good idea to clean your grill when you’re done with it, so get a good grill brush to make the job easier

Other items you might find useful include grill mitts and a grill light, especially if you like to enjoy your meals later in the evening.

A Few More Things to Make the Grilling Life Awesome

  • A patio set — Sure, you could bring the food inside to eat, but food cooked outdoors is best enjoyed outdoors — especially on a gorgeous patio set.
  • Outdoor lighting — A twinkling set of patio lights adds a little ambiance when daylight starts to fade. Unless, of course, you’d prefer to dine by the light of the moon.
  • A cooler — If you’re going camping or simply heading to a BBQ at the park, a decent cooler will keep everything organized and easily portable.
  • A fire extinguisher – Because, well, accidents can happen.

All you need now is the food. Happy grilling!

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home

How clean is the air in your home?

We don’t always think about the air we breathe indoors, but we should. In fact, NASA has proved the air inside can be 30 times more toxic than the air outside. There are lots of possible air pollutants on any given day — lingering particles from cooking, dust from heating vents and fireplaces, cigarette smoke, perfume or cosmetic residue, and even just good old fashioned regular dirt and exhaust from leaving windows open in summer. It’s enough to send anyone’s allergies and sensitivities into a sneezing fit.

We’ve collected five easy things you can do to keep on top of these allergens and pollutants to improve the air quality in your home.

Now that’s a breath of fresh air!

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home


1. Air purifiers

Air purifiers are an easy way to clean the air in your home for even the busiest families. Once you choose a model that fits your aesthetic, lifestyle, and price range, place the unit in the room you spend most time in. Then simply turn it on and walk away!

Pro tip: Replace the filter more often than 6 months when the air quality is particularly bad. For example, during forest-fire season you should replace it more regularly. Monitor and replace as necessary.


2. House plants

If you’re looking to not only detox the air indoors but beautify your space too, bring the outside, in! In the same study NASA completed about indoor air quality, it also revealed many house plants that scrub and purify indoor air of common pollutants. Each one has different light and water requirements, so pick a few that will do well in your own home, and go green for cleaner air!

Some recommended house plants include:

  • Aloe Vera
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Devil’s Ivy
  • Dracaena
  • English Ivy
  • Ficus
  • Flamingo Lily
  • Many palm varieties including Areca, Bamboo, Dwarf Date, and Raphis
  • Peace Lily
  • Snake Plant
  • Spider Plant

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home


3. (De) Humidifiers

Depending on the humidity level in your home, (de) humidifiers can be useful tools!

Keep in mind if too much moisture is released into the air it can stir up dust mites and create mould, making the air quality worse and thereby causing allergic reactions. If it’s too dry, viruses and airborne toxins thrive. So choosing a humidifier or dehumidifier depends on your unique air quality.

Whether you choose to add moisture to the air or remove it, Health Canada recommends keeping your home’s humidity level between 30 and 50 percent. This will also make the air feel warmer during winter months, helping you use less energy to heat your home.

And of course, be sure to clean your unit regularly to ensure it works effectively and safely.

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home


4. Clean

When it comes to indoor air quality, preventing the build-up of toxins can easily be remedied with some good old fashioned elbow grease. That is, cleaning.

With our busy schedules it can be difficult to find time to clean every surface in our homes, but dividing up the house-cleaning schedule among family members can make the weekly chore list easier and faster.

In terms of avoiding air pollutants, there are some spaces in your home that can have a bigger impact on your air quality than others:

  • The air conditioning unit
  • Dryer lint traps
  • Clothes and bed sheets
  • Flat surfaces

By wiping these down with your trusty cleaning supplies, you’ll remove dust mites, dust build-up, and all kinds of pollens that blow in from outside. And be sure to use eco-friendly cleaning products! You’ll not only avoid harsh chemicals, which are common indoor air pollutants, but they’re easier on our systems, our homes, and our planet.

Pro tip: Keep areas cleaner and minimize build-up by removing your shoes at the door so you don’t track in what your soles have brought inside. And if you smoke, go outside and close the door behind you.

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home


5. Aromatherapy and salt lamps

Finally, science has shown aromatherapy and salt lamps can help eradicate airborne bacteria, fungi, and according to some, the flu virus. This is especially true of eucalyptus, citrus, clove, lavender, and tea tree oils.

Simply add the recommended amount to your diffuser, turn it on, and ultrasonic diffusion will disperse essential oils. Within 30-60 minutes you’ll have cleaner indoor air!

Plus, by using aromatherapy and salt lamps, you get the added benefit of not just beautiful smelling air (bye-bye unwanted odours,) but essential oils can help relax your mind and body as well. It’s a win win win!

5 Ways to Improve the Indoor Air Quality in Your Home


If you need help or advice on how to purify the air in your home, we can help! Stop by your local London Drugs and talk to our in-store experts – we’d love to see you!

How to Have a Relaxing at-home Spa Day

At-home spa

We live in a culture that glorifies “busy”. Despite the adrenaline-pumping thrill of knocking things off your to-do list, it’s important to carve out space to breathe, calm down, and process all that “doing”. Our nervous systems and minds need regular breaks to reset and reflect on our rich and full lives.

Yet self-care, which more than half of millennial women resolved to do more of last year, isn’t always easy to incorporate, particularly when it involves booking time to get away to a spa.

The good news is that we don’t need to travel to go to the spa. Once you commit to making the time and space, it’s easy to incorporate some basic rituals that help bring the spa home. After all, home is meant to be a place of restoration, so all the more reason to embrace it.

Here are some easy products and practices that will make an at-home spa day nearly as good as the real thing.

Set up Your Spa Space

Part of a spa’s appeal is simply the care they take in creating a relaxing environment. Find a soothing music playlist to set the backdrop and light a scented candle for some natural mood lighting. Crystal salt lamps also cast a beautiful soft light and are known for gently filtering the air. Awaken your senses with an aromatherapy diffuser to relax your mind and encourage some deep exhalations.

Relax with Massage

Massage is deeply therapeutic, stimulating our circulation and releasing muscle tension which creates deep relaxation. In the absence of a professional massage therapist, we can mimic the benefits of this type of treatment with innovative home massagers that focus on the lower back, the upper back, the hands, and the feet. A 10- to 15-minute treatment will help loosen up sore muscles and release tension that may be contributing to higher stress levels.  

Take a Long Bath

The power of salt is not only for mood lighting. Epsom salts are widely used in athletic communities for treating muscle aches and pains. They work by drawing toxins out of the body through the skin, minimizing lactic acid build-up in muscle fibres. To use, add about a cup of epsom salts to a hot bath and soak for 15-20 minutes. Short on time? Try a foot soak instead. After bathing, towel off lightly and let the salt continue to work its magic until your next rinse.

Give Yourself a FacialAt-home-spa-day

Facials are truly the ultimate spa experience. The gorgeous scents, myriad creams, and the care taken in applying each one is what makes a facial so unique. The secret ingredient to a great facial is all in the mask, and what gives us that coveted youthful glow. Luckily, masks are easy to make at home with ingredients found in your own kitchen. Coconut oil, avocados, fruit, yogurt, and oatmeal, are simple ingredients that hydrate, exfoliate, and rejuvenate. Once you’ve blended your mask, apply to clean skin and let sit for 15-20 minutes. After rinsing, don’t forget to moisturize and lock in that new-found glow.

Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Now that you’re massaged, soaked, and masked, the best way to prolong the “aaaahhh” is to get a good night’s sleep. You can support a restful, deep sleep with healthy red reishi mushroom supplements, which are used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to strengthen Qi, boost mood, and encourage sleep.

Make it a Regular Date

Your body and mind will be thanking you for the well-deserved TLC. A regular home spa day (or evening) will go a long way to alleviating chronic stress, restoring your energy, and brightening your mood. With some simple products and strategies, bringing the spa home can be simple, fun, and revitalizing.

12 Father’s Day Gift Ideas That’ll Make Dad Smile

Father's Day Gifts to Make Dad Smile

Dads are great at bringing a smile to our faces with jokes, silliness and camaraderie that can’t be matched. This Father’s Day, let’s do the same for them, with gifts to get them grinning.

For the Health-conscious Dad

FitBit Charge 3If your dad hasn’t yet jumped on the FitBit craze, now’s a good time to get him started. The Fitbit Charge 3 offers more advanced features than ever before, tracking heart rate, calorie burn, sleep stages, and cardio fitness. It also provides personalized guidance and reminders, guided breathing sessions, and call alerts, text notifications, and quick replies for when he’s on the move.

 

Omron Blood Pressure MonitorHelp dad keep his ticker in top shape with Omron’s Blood Pressure Monitor. This device is easy to use, offers advanced monitoring features and even allows two users to track and save their results (so mom can share, too).

 

 Are aches and pains keeping dad away from his favourite activities? Give him Dr-Ho’s Pain Therapy System. This digital massage system provides 12 soothing massage techniques to help relieve pain and tension in just 20 minutes.

 

 

For the Techie Dad

Ryze Tech Tello DroneTechie dads love their toys, and this one does not disappoint. The Ryze Tech Tello Drone is super easy to fly; just toss it up in the air and it goes. Your phone acts as controller, and lets you perform cool tricks, flips and spins. It comes with an HD camera for high-quality photos and video, too, so you can capture the whole fam from a bird’s eye view.

 

Google Home AssistantIs dad a bit of a homebody? Then make his home life all the more convenient with a Google Home Voice Activated Speaker Assistant. Google Home will answer his questions, relay weather updates and sports scores, and even tell him jokes.

IQ Wireless Charging Pad

 

If dad is drowning in cords for all his tech, give him the gift of a cordless charging pad. With the IQ Wireless Charging Pad he can set his phone down to charge without fiddling with any cords. Happiness really is about the little things sometimes.

 

For the Outdoorsy Dad

Coleman Roadtrip GrillWhat dad doesn’t love to grill? With the Coleman Roadtrip Grill, he can take his love of grilling with him wherever he goes. This 36” grill with collapsible scissor legs makes it perfect for camping trips and cooking on the go.

Garmin GPS

 

Help your dad get where he needs to go (without ever having to stop and ask for directions). The Garmin GPSMAP is perfect for hikers with its multisatellite handheld navigation system and expanded wireless connectivity for access to weather forecasts and other essential information. Its large colour display makes maps and info easy to see, even in direct sunlight.

Steiner Binoculars

 

Is your dad into ornothology? Help him check out all-things-winged with these Steiner BluHorizons Binoculars. Ergonomic eyecups shield eyes from wind, glare and peripheral light while the binoculars automatically adjust brightness levels, so dad can keep his eyes on the prize.

 

 

For the Beautiful Dad

Bulldog SkincareDads like to look good too, and it’s never too late to start a good moisturizing routine. Bulldog Skincare for Men offers an age defense moisturizer that’s perfect for “mature” skin. It helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles and will brighten your dad’s skin, along with his day, every time he uses it and thinks of you.

 

 

Braun Beard TrimmerEvery dad needs a good razor — even if it’s just for trimming his beard. If your dad is of the bearded variety, get him the Braun Beard Trimmer Shave and Trim Kit. With 39 different length settings, this shaver’s got your dad covered no matter how he prefers his facial hair.

 

 

Philips SonicareAnd, finally, he’ll be grinning from ear to ear with his ultra-clean pearly whites thanks to the Philips Sonicare DiamondClean Smart Electric Toothbrush.

 

 

Happy Father’s Day to all the dads, from all of us at London Drugs

Travelling Outside Canada? Get Current on Your Vaccinations First

With the summer holiday season approaching, you might be making plans to do some travelling abroad. While booking flights and hotel rooms is usually the first step, making sure you and your family are up to date on all age-appropriate vaccinations is another important part of the trip planning process.

The majority (78%) of Canadians believe that travelling outside of Canada puts them at risk for a number of vaccine-preventable diseases, according to a survey conducted by Insights West on behalf of London Drugs. Despite this, only half (52%) of those who have previously travelled overseas say they have ever received a vaccination specifically for travel. Just three in 10 (31%) are aware that the Government of Canada recommends that Canadians visit a travel clinic before travelling.

A Convenient Way to Update Your Immunity

“Travel vaccinations can be administered by pharmacists and this can be a more convenient, time-saving option for Canadians,” says Lily Liang, a Travel Clinic Pharmacist at London Drugs.

Travel Clinics are offered at select London Drugs locations and Certified Injection Pharmacists can administer common travel vaccinations such as hepatitis A and B, yellow fever, typhoid, and traveller’s diarrhea as well other recommended vaccinations like rabies, Japanese encephalitis, meningitis, pneumonia, shingles, diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, measles, mumps, and rubella.

Liang says getting current on your measles vaccination is particularly important right now, due to reported outbreaks throughout North America.

“The measles vaccine is the best way to prevent the spread of this highly contagious virus. If you’re planning an international trip, or if you are unsure of your immunization status, get vaccinated before travelling.”

More than a quarter (28%) of Canadians say they did not receive vaccination for travel because they didn’t feel it was necessary. Yet nine in 10 (89%) Canadians say they strongly believe that travel vaccinations and medications protect themselves and others when travelling and six in 10 (61%) agree that it’s important to review their immunization history before travelling.

“The results seem contradictory but the reemergence of vaccine-preventable diseases has caused some concern and confusion about vaccination. It is particularly important for those planning to travel internationally to get vaccinated,” advises Liang. “Beyond the serious health threats of not being vaccinated, travelling without them can really ruin a holiday if you or your loved ones become sick. No one wants to spend their vacation at a doctor’s clinic or hospital in a foreign country.”

Most (79%) Canadians say they are likely to visit their personal doctor to learn about vaccinations before travelling overseas, with pharmacies being the next most popular choice (61%).

London Drugs’ Travel Clinic

London Drugs’ Travel Clinic Pharmacists have obtained specialized training from the International Society of Travel Medicine and have their Travel Health® designation. They can provide advice about medications, vaccinations and health supplies needed for travel as well as the following services:

  • Comprehensive destination consults
  • Personalized travel health advice and record keeping
  • Administration of vaccines and boosters
  • Direct insurance billing

To book a Travel Clinic appointment before your next trip, visit LDTravelClinics.ca.

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