What to buy someone going through cancer

If you have a friend or family member going through cancer and you’d like to buy them something to show them that you’re thinking of them and rooting for them, we’ve got some suggestions for you. Or maybe you’re going through cancer yourself and it’s time for a treat?

A speciality food hamper

The Gift Hamper, €85.00, The Happy Pear

The Happy Pear does a fabulous food hamper full of delicious and healthy treats. We think it would make a fabulous gift. Or, make your own with a big basket and a haul from SuperValu’s Food Academy section supporting small, local producers around Ireland.

Special tea 


Pukka Turmeric Gold Tea, €3.50, The Health Store

Price & Kensington Bright Green Tea for One, €2.99, Home Store & More

In Ireland, tea solves everything… We love Pukka’s Turmeric Gold tea – lemon fruit, aromatic cardamom and whole leaf green tea expertly blended with turmeric, one of nature’s most powerful herbs. Pair it with an indulgent Tea for One set like this one from Home Store & More and you’ve got a beautiful, thoughtful gift for under €10.

Pyjamas and a dressing gown

Contrast Heart Wrap, €20, Dunnes Stores

It can be hard to know what to buy someone going through cancer, especially if you know the person has made changes to their lifestyle or diet because of their cancer journey. One thing you can’t go wrong with is some comfy pyjamas or a dressing gown. If your friend or family member is going through chemo, they will be spending a lot of time in their pyjamas resting. Make sure they’re as comfortable as they can be in this super-soft fluffy wrap from Dunnes Stores.

Natural household products

Lavender Hand Sanitiser, €5.89, Dr Bronner’s

Dr Bronner’s is a fantastic brand of natural products available in health stores around Ireland. Their range of products smell great and work just as well as their mainstream counterparts. A lot of people going through a cancer journey look at their ‘toxic load’ – that is the amount of chemicals they use on their skin and in their household products – and choose to swap to a natural brand like Dr Bronner’s. We think Dr Bronner’s Organic Pump SoapLavender Hand Sanitiser and All-One Toothpaste are a great place to start. The Lavender Hand Sanitiser is particularly good for people going through cancer as they can pop it into their bag and use it as needed to keep their hands germ-free.

A gentle or natural skincare set

Dermatological Daily Essentials Pack, €18.95, Elave

A person’s skin goes through a tough time during cancer treatment. Chemotherapy and radiotherapy can leave skin feeling dry, sore and inflamed and after surgery, scars need extra special care. The Dermatological Daily Essentials pack from Elave or a custom-made box from natural skincare expert Denise O’Connell at myskin.ie are both thoughtful and practical gifts.

Aromatherapy oils

Aromatherapy Starter Kit, €35.00, Atlantic Aromatics

Aromatherapy is a practice in which scented oils are inhaled through the nose or rubbed on the body during a massage. Research in cancer patients has shown that aromatherapy may help relieve anxiety, depression, nausea and high blood pressure. The oils used in aromatherapy, called “essential oils,” are the highly concentrated extracts of flowers, leaves, stems, roots, seeds, bark, resin, or fruit rinds. Essential oils can be purchased in most health food stores. We love this great value aromatherapy Starter Kit from Atlantic Aromatics. Click here for more information on aromatherapy during cancer.

Frankincense is a common type of essential oil used in aromatherapy that can offer a variety of health benefits, including helping relieve chronic stress and anxiety, reducing pain and inflammation, boosting immunity and even potentially helping to fight cancer. Click here for more information about Frankincense and it’s uses.

An inspirational diary

The Get Up & Go Diary for Busy Women 2018, €10, available here

‘The diary that inspires and motivates’ – perfect for any woman and any woman going through cancer. It is filled with beautiful graphics, inspirational quotes, thought provoking messages and timely reminders to ‘forgive the past, live the present, create the future’. Help your friend or family member keep track of all their appointments and stay positive with this handbag-sized diary. It’s a bargain-busting €10.

A luxury blanket 

Lambswool Throw, €69.95/€99.95, Avoca

Back to that whole ‘spending a lot of time resting’. And what with winter on the way. A beautiful luxury blanket like this Lambswool Throw from Avoca, or one of these from Foxford, will be a cherished present for your friend or family member. We love the brightness of the Avoca throw – it’s cheer and joy in a blanket.

A house-cleaning service

Helpling, from €13.90 per hour

Ooh, this one is just too fabulous for words. Give them permission to put the household cleaning into someone else’s hands, even if just for a little while. There’s nothing better than resting and relaxing in a beautifully cleaned house. Helpling will put them in touch with a trusted cleaner in their area starting from €13.90 per hour.

The gift of your time

Your favourite book or box set
Whatever you decide to buy, don’t underestimate the power of your very best gift – your time. Don’t worry about what to say, just go see them. Be with them, listen to them. Talk about whatever they are talking about. That’s all you have to do. Bring them your all-time favourite book or box set and they will remember you long after you’ve gone home.

A healthy home-cooked meal
Going through chemotherapy is extremely tough. It’s important that your friend or family member eats well during this time to keep their energy levels up and maintain their weight. They’re not going to have the energy to cook for themselves though, so bringing them one or a few home-cooked meals will be a really welcome helping hand, for them and their primary care-giver.

Your professional services
Do you work in healthcare, personal care, complementary therapy, nutrition or food? Do you have a professional service or skill that you can offer to your friend or family member during this time in their life? For example, if you’re a hairdresser, offer to help them choose a wig, or wash and blow-dry their wig for them. Or, if you’re a dietician, offer your services to them to work out if they’re eating enough calories to maintain their weight during chemo. We all have skills, professional or otherwise, that could help your friend during this time in their life. Think about it and put the offer out there.

Finally, we think there are some lovely gift items available in the Wellness section of The Kilkenny Shop, take a look here.

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