4 Ways Outdoor Seasonal Allergens Can Hitchhike Into Your Home

No. 1 Clothes

Pollen may collect on dresses, shirts, pants, and skirts when you're outdoors.

Brush off clothing before you come inside; this step removed up to 68% of pollen in one study. Changing or taking off outer layers at the door is an even better idea. Dry laundry indoors during pollen season, too. Clothing as well as sheets and towels hung up to dry on the clothesline can be pollen magnets.

No. 2 Shoes and boots

Inch per inch, footwear may hold on to even more pollen than clothes. The simple reason: Pollen spores fall to the ground and get kicked onto shoes with each step. Seasonal allergens collect on the tops and underside of shoes, too.

Take off shoes at the door.

No. 3 Your hair and skin

Your hair (especially if you use sticky gels, sprays, or pastes), your hands, and any skin that's exposed when you're outside may pick up outdoor seasonal allergens and give them a free ride into your home.

After outdoor activity, take a shower and wash your hair.

No. 4 Open windows and window fans

Breezes moving through your home may bring pollen in. Window fans draw seasonal allergens in, too.

Shut windows tightly and run air conditioners on recirculate to filter indoor air when pollen counts are high. Manufacturers generally suggest changing the filter every 3 months.

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