Tackling menopause and hot flushes – when feeling and being hot is really not that hot. Healthista’s Charlotte Dormon reveals 5 tried and tested handbag essentials to help overcome a hot flush and keep cool and calm on the go
Menopause, often called the ‘change,’ is a natural biological process that represents the end of a woman’s reproductive years. While it brings the insight of wisdom and self-discovery, it also comes with many debilitating mental and physical challenges, one of the most commonly talked about being hot flushes.
Why do hot flushes happen during menopause?
Hot flushes, or hot flashes, are sudden sensations of intense warmth that can spread across the body, often accompanied by sweating and a flushed face.
They happen due to hormonal changes, primarily due to a decrease in oestrogen levels, which impacts the body’s ability to regulate temperature during this time.
As oestrogen levels decline, the body’s thermostat goes a bit haywire, becoming hypersensitive to even slight changes in temperature. When your body perceives a temperature increase, it triggers a cooling response, leading to the characteristic hot flushes that women frequently experience.
Hot flushes aren’t just about feeling hot; they can be emotionally and physically challenging.
Here are some of the most common symptoms women may experience during a hot flush:
- Intense Heat: A sudden and intense feeling of heat, often starting in the face or neck and spreading throughout the body.
- Excessive Sweating: Profuse sweating is a typical companion of hot flushes, which can leave you feeling drenched.
- Rapid Heartbeat: Many women may experience an elevated heart rate during a hot flush.
- Chills: After the flush, you might feel chilly as your body works to regulate its temperature.
- Mood Swings: Hot flushes can sometimes accompany mood swings, irritability, anger and anxiety.
Other side effects from decreased oestrogen include:
- Increased Sweat Production: Lower oestrogen levels can increase sweat production, as oestrogen helps regulate body temperature and control sweat gland activity.
- Change in Sweat Composition: The composition of sweat can change during menopause, becoming more acidic. This change can provide an environment that encourages the growth of odor-producing bacteria.
- Vaginal Changes: Along with changes in underarm odour, some women may also notice changes in vaginal odour. This can be due to decreased vaginal moisture and changes in pH levels in the vaginal area.
Healthisa’s Tried & Tested Hot Flush Handbag Essentials…
Hot Flush Handbag essential #1 FreshWipes Shower Wipes
Cooling, Refreshing and Antibacterial.
FreshWipes Shower Wipes are a perfect product to keep in your bag to tackle those hot flush moments to help you feel fresh, clean and confident wherever you are.
Unlike regular body wipes/baby wipes that don’t decompose and usually stay in landfills, FreshWipes are made from natural plant fibres that are fully biodegradable and will compost just like regular fruit and veg.
If you’ve ever been worried about body odour after being caught out with hot sweat, fear not, as FreshWipes are ideal for tackling smelly bits as they contain a special antibacterial agent that is used in the medical profession that effectively removes the body odour-causing bacteria that build up on the skin.
FreshWipes Shower Wipes as well as being helpful when hit with a hot flush, are also ideal for use to freshen up after a workout, during travel and after a hot, sweaty commute so you can feel instantly fresh and smelling gorgeous again.
Currently available to buy from Amazon, QVC and Superdrug and come in three different options – Coconut, Grapefruit and unscented.
Hot Flush Handbag essential #2 FreshWipes Feminine Wipes
Gentle cleansing and soothing properties for helping you feel fresh ‘down there’ after a hot flush experience.
FreshWipes Feminine Wipes are pH-balanced to support the natural pH of the intimate area. This helps maintain the delicate balance of the vaginal environment, reducing the risk of odour and are enriched with soothing and moisturising ingredients like aloe vera, chamomile, and vitamin E.
They help keep the intimate area comfortable and hydrated, which can be especially beneficial during menopause when vaginal dryness may occur.
They are discreetly packaged, making them perfect to pop in your bag and use for instant on-the-go freshness. Whether you’re at work, travelling, or simply out and about, they provide a quick and discreet solution for staying fresh.
Hot Flush Handbag essential #3 The Sensation Cooling Scarf
Designed to be a naturally chic, discreet and stylish cooling aid for when you’re feeling overheated.
Designed by a women’s health expert and menopause coach, this almost magical cooling fabric scarf is ideal to pack in your bag and help you stay calm in those hot flush moments.
When wrapped around the neck, back and chest (it can be used anywhere on the body you want to feel a cooling relief and will even work on a pillow if you want to lay down and keep cool), you instantly feel soothed by the soft cool sensation fabric.
It may look like you are wearing a regular scarf (which is handy in those moments, like during meetings when you don’t want to be armed with a handheld fan), yet the nature of the fabric technology means that it keeps dry and cool at all times.
The fibres wick moisture and water vapour away from you and accelerate evaporation. It is this evaporation that provides an immediate cooling sensation. Once taken out of its packaging, the scarf just needs to be shaken to be activated and then placed anywhere on the skin. This will provide an immediate relief.
This scarf is light, fashionable, and needs no preparation to be effective. The cooling sensation provides immediate relief as soon as you drape it around your neck.
Hot Flush Handbag essential #4 John Lewis Handheld and Foldable Fan
Your No.1 fan when it comes to keeping you cool, this handbag essential comes in handy to keep you cool any time you experience a hot ‘moment’ – be that on a busy tube, train or plane, sitting in a stuffy waiting room, or simply waiting in line for your morning coffee.
Despite the teeny size, it’s surprisingly powerful and quiet too. You have 3-speed settings to allow you to tackle the heat, and if you are doing your makeup or sitting at your desk and want to stay chill, it cleverly adapts to a fold-out stand.
Batteries are not required; simply recharge with a standard USB, and you are good to go.
Hot Flush Handbag essential #5 Weleda Hydrating Facial Mist
Weleda are leading experts in natural beauty and skincare, and if you’re after a cooling facial mist to keep handy without the worry of unnatural ingredients or unwanted chemicals, this one is for you.
With the temperatures dropping outside and the heating on inside, our skin can start to dry out when faced with extreme temperature changes.
Spritz the mist onto your face three to five times as and when needed, and enjoy refreshing and rehydrating dry skin with an oil-free moisture boost, calming sensitivity and cooling the heat. It absorbs quickly, leaving skin soft, fresh, supple and most importantly cooler.
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