House pharmacy essentials: 10 items for medicine cabinet

House pharmacy – these are the necessities

From cuts to headaches to the common cold – it’s important to be prepared in case of injury and illness. That’s where a well-stocked home medicine cabinet can make a big difference. But if you’ve never stocked a house pharmacy before or are planning to restock your current one, it can seem a little daunting. There are thousands of medical products out there. So where do you start? What products are must-haves in a home pharmacy? And why is it important that you get them?

1. Bandages and plasters

Every home medicine cabinet should have plenty of bandages and plasters at the ready. Cuts are common and happen all the time. So it’s a good idea to stock up on plasters of different sizes and at least two roller bandages and some wound dressings. You may also want to invest in an antiseptic wound spray for quick disinfection after a cut.

2. Painkillers

The second item that shouldn’t be missing from a home pharmacy are over-the-counter pain medications like paracetamol and ibuprofen. It’s best to stock one of each because they’re used for different types of illness. While both are useful to relieve headaches, fevers or other pains, ibuprofen is also an anti-inflammatory.

3. A thermometer

Fevers are common symptoms of colds and the flu. A thermometer is a good house pharmacy investment to make sure you can quickly check when you or your family get a high temperature. Standard digital thermometers are widely available and shouldn’t be missing from your medicine cabinet, especially if you have children. 

4. Antacids

Overindulged a little during dinner? Antacids can bring quick relief. They’re available over the counter and are a useful addition to your house pharmacy. 

5. Cough medicine

Although most coughs tend to go away by themselves after a week or two, they’re often annoying and disrupting. When coughs also keep you from sleeping, it’s time to take some cough syrup. You could also stock up on cough drops and lozenges to treat a sore throat. 

6. Allergy medicines

If your nose is itching, you’re sneezing, or suddenly develop a rash or watery eyes, you may be having an allergic reaction. Antihistamines like loratadine and cetirizine can offer quick relief. If you suffer from seasonal allergies like hay fever, make sure you have antihistamines to hand. They’re available as tablets, nose sprays and eye drops.

7. Tweezers

No medicine cabinet should go without tweezers. You never know when you may get a splinter or find yourself having to remove a tick. Tweezers are still the best tool to remedy both. 

8. Petroleum jelly

Petroleum jelly is cheap and a great all-rounder. You can use it to treat dry or chapped skin and nails, as well as rashes and scars. It also makes for a nice makeup remover when you’ve run out of your daily cleanser in your house pharmacy section.

9. Sunscreen

Sunscreen is a must-have in your medicine cabinet. It protects against skin cancer and burns. It’s best to choose a slightly higher factor like SPF 30 or 50. If you have children, you can also buy a water-resistant sunscreen to make sure they’re protected. 

10. Heat and ice sprays or packs

These are useful for muscle sprains and aches but can also be a soothing way to relieve headaches. Heat and ice sprays are also available as plasters or creams.


Staying safe is important. That’s why we recommend you put up a list of emergency contacts on the inside of your medicine cabinet. You could also provide some quick instructions for your family so they know whom to call when an accident happens. Make sure you know how to drill a hole correctly so you don’t accidentally cut yourself!


Sign-up now to take advantage of member exclusives!

As a member of Ask Team Clean, you get access to exclusive offers and the best cleaning tips.