Preparing Your Summer Medicine Cabinet
While the medicine cabinet is not exactly the first place you think of when it comes to organizing your home, it is one of the most important areas to keep clean and stocked—especially as we head into the summer months. We recommend starting this process by clearing out all products and wiping down the inside and outside of the cabinet with an eco-friendly cleaning solution such as our Ecospirit brand.
Once everything is out of the cabinet, you need to begin sorting through what you need, organizing what you have and purchasing what you may be missing. Here are some tips:
Out With The Old (And Smelly)
Are items outdated, old or smelly? They need to be thrown out, even if they’re not empty. Expired items will no longer be effective and may even be hazardous to your health. Before you toss products into the trash, check out these tips from the FDA on how to properly dispose of unused medicine. In addition to looking at dates on medicine, be sure to also look for cosmetics that may have expired—if the consistency and/or smell of the product has changed considerably, throw it out.
Add Warm Weather Medicines
There are certain items you should always have in your medicine cabinet regardless of the season such as basic pain relievers and products that relieve mild digestive ailments (here is a great checklist from Real Simple). However, in the summer months, you will want to add allergy medicines, hydrocortisone cream, and eyedrops. We also recommend having children’s versions of medicines available. Even if you don’t have children of your own, you never know when a tiny houseguest might need some immediate relief.
Do you have three of each item crowding your cabinet? Move the extra items to another area such as a linen closet or kitchen pantry. You can continue to keep them organized by creating small bins labeled by type of product (i.e. “Lotions”, “Digestion”). Keep in mind that some medications and cosmetic products become less effective when stored in areas of high humidity or heat and you should always keep items out of reach of children.
Re-stock First Aid Kit
You probably use your first aid kit more during the warmer weather months, so make sure it is stocked and ready. Your at-home emergency kit should include Band-Aids, sterile wash for cleansing wounds, ointment, gauze and burn relief. We also recommend adding extra sunscreen and aloe vera gel for unexpected sunburns. The Red Cross gives you a complete list of items to include. It’s always better to take the time to make sure you’re prepared before an emergency actually happens.
Make it Pretty
You may not think “medicine cabinet” and “pretty” should be used in the same sentence, but we know that the more attractive an area is, the more likely you are to keep it organized. HGTV.com suggests purchasing glass jars for cotton balls or bandages, using small plastic organizers for tweezers and combs and taking advantage of the removable shelves to organize items by size.
Talk to us: What is the most used item in your medicine cabinet?