rich emollient used in the management of eczema, psoriasis and other dry skin conditions.


What do you never leave home without? I am one of those people with a Mary Poppin’s type bag, inside which I carry around everything but the kitchen sink. Sometimes I wish I could leave the house with nothing, but there are so many things I have to take that I end up covering every eventuality.

Let’s start with the bag itself. It is ginormous.

What is in the Allergic Girl WhatAllergy's beautiful 100% leather satchel

What is in the Allergic Girl WhatAllergy’s beautiful 100% leather satchel?

There are the obvious things that every allergic person never leaves home without like two adrenaline auto-injectors (mine are Emerades). If you have asthma you also need your inhaler and of course anti-histamines which can be invaluable at reducing allergy reactions. We all need money and the obligatory mobile phone but what else does this allergic girl keep by her side? I emptied my bag and laid it all out on the table and couldn’t quite believe how much was in there… I need to de-clutter in a big way.

What does the allergic girl never leave home without?

What does the allergic girl never leave home without?

Just how many things can the allergic girl fit into her handbag? I was actually quite shocked.

  1. iPhone – number one. Never leave home without it
  2. Ipad with pink padded case and Logitech keyboard
  3. Merino wool green beanie
  4. Brown leather gloves
  5. 2 x Emerade adrenaline auto-injectors – Everyone should carry two adrenaline auto-injectors.
  6. 1 x inhaler – never leave home without an inhaler, that has not expired. Check yours today.
  7. Fexafenodine anti-histamines
  8. Allergy Action Plan – This explains simply for anyone who finds me having an allergic reaction what to do, from injecting, phoning 999 etc. Even I panic so having it written down can be really helpful, especially if you’re with people not familiar with anaphylaxis. It is easy to panic and do the wrong thing.
  9. Paracetamol pain killers
  10. Oyster card
  11. Train timetable
  12. London map – most months I’m in London for some event or other on the allergy calendar and you never know when a map might come in handy.
  13. Business cards – you never know who you’ll meet in the freefrom aisle or in the Health Food Shop. I am often swapping cards and telling people about my blog. These are in the credit card wallet – forgot to display them but they are there. Honest!
  14. Nairns Wholegrain crackers - crunchy bite, very tasty

    My very favourite Nairns new gluten free Wholegrain crackers – crunchy bite, very tasty

  15. Nairns oat cake tin contains GF oats and syrup oatcakes and a couple of my favourite GF wholegrain crackers
  16. Strawberry flavour Frank Bar – my favourite snack bar treat, avoids sitting in a coffee shop watching friends indulge in cakes and cookies while I pretend I’m not actually hungry anyway.
  17. Nairns Mueisli breaks biscuits – there seem to be rather a lot of snacks in this bag. Always go prepared – ever the girl guide. But if you don’t have food and find you are also hungry and fancy the look of one of my oat cakes or snacks, unless you are in danger of going into diabetic shock you’re not having one. I don’t do sharing.
  18. Shopping bag – you know, in case I find a fantastic health food shop and can’t fit it inside my ginormous bag. Made from parachute material and folds up into a little pouch.
  19. Pure Potions tea tree salve – in case I get that cold sore tingle. This stuff really keeps them at bay.
  20. Herstat Propolis cold sore balm – just in case I get a cold sore. This and the tea tree salve are my saviours. I alternate between them and the cold sores don’t stand a chance. It also keeps my lips healthy.
  21. Small pot of Epaderm – for those dry skin moments. I often have to moisturise during the day so having a small tub of emollient helps maintain healthy skin and avoids breakdown of the skin barrier and unnecessary itching.
  22. Small pink makeup bag – hidden from view on the far right.
  23. Tissues – My eyes are often weeping and my Mum and Nan said you should never leave home without your hanky. I do prefer a cotton handkerchief but I don’t always have one in my bag. Cotton is better when eyes and nose are very raw and sore.
  24. Origins cover up – masks any red face moments should they arise.
  25. NatOrigin black eyeliner – the only one I can use without making my eyes water.
  26. Small black comb to tame my haystack hair.
  27. USB memory stick – working freelance you never know when you might need to exchange files or need extra storage.
  28. A couple of coloured pens – everything seems better when you have nice stationery and coloured pens.
  29. Coin purse – It’s not cheap living FreeFrom.
  30. Portable extra iphone battery and cable – the iPhone 4 has appalling battery life. This battery gives me THREE charges! Priceless.
  31. Credit card pouch – I cannot walk past a vegan or health food shop and they are not cheap. Plastic makes the world go round.
  32. Cloth for cleaning glasses lenses
  33. Glasses case for those vain moments when I don’t want to be seen wearing the geeky specs.
  34. Always a book – this week The Guest Cat by
    Takashi Hiraide. Just call me bookworm. I am always reading, if I’m not writing.
  35. Ipod and headphones
  36. Chewing gum
  37. Keys to the whatallergy household

OK, so mystery prize for anyone who can spot the item in the list that is not actually in the photograph… Comment below what you think is missing and I’ll get in touch. These are things that are normally in there but are either being washed or in another smaller bag. There that’s enough clues.

You should also carry your Allergy Action Plan with you at all times – mine is hidden inside one of the adrenaline plastic protective containers.

So what do you never leave home without? This photograph obviously doesn’t contain the lunch which is also often packed in there in little tubs. Then there’s the umbrella in case it rains. The bottle of water which was currently being washed so not in the bag at the time, the notebook which was on the side and forgot to be in the photograph.



An allergy and health writer and freelance copywriter, Ruth is passionate about helping those with allergies and food intolerances take control, embrace their condition, and learn to live with and love who they are. It can be very lonely finding you have allergies and discovering what helps you can be a life long journey. What works for one person won't work for another, so after trying nearly every allergy treatment under the sun and finding hours of research necessary to keep abreast of what's going on, Ruth started writing her blog, What Allergy? in April 2009. Ruth has life threatening allergies herself to all nuts, all diary, tomatoes and celery and knows first-hand what it's like to have an anaphylactic attack. Voted in the Top 5 UK allergy blogs by Cision UK in 2011, What Allergy is packed full of interesting articles, hints and tips and product reviews which are a must read for anyone with allergies, food intolerances or sensitivities, asthma and eczema. From subjects such as "What is celery allergy?" to "Surviving a holiday abroad with allergies", it's packed with useful and interesting information. You can register free for a weekly newsletter by visiting her website and also keep in touch by following her on Facebook and Twitter.

3 Responses to What’s in the allergic girl’s handbag?

  1. Zaki Anwar M.D

    Nice Site For Health…….!

  2. RM

    Hi Ruth – can I ask who provided your anaphylaxis management plan? Is it from a charity or an NHS trust?

  3. Erma Coto

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