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Hayfever: Brits suffering with symptoms earlier than ever according to Boots

30 March 2022
News Healthcare
  • Sales of hayfever and allergy products at Boots has seen an increase in February and March to date, compared to the same time last year
  • Sales data suggests symptoms of hayfever have started earlier this year, with studies also pointing to a longer and more intense hayfever season
  • Boots Chief Pharmacist Marc Donovan shares his top tips of how to manage hayfever now that the high pollen season is upon us

Sales data from Boots suggests that people are experiencing hayfever symptoms earlier than usual this year – up by almost one third in February and the first two weeks of March 2022 compared to the same period last year.[1]

Hayfever is a common allergy to pollen that occurs mainly in spring and summer and affects 26% of adults and 10-15% of children in the UK. Its symptoms of sneezing, a runny nose and itchy eyes can be significant for many.[2]  

Hayfever is usually worse in the UK between late March and September, when it’s warm, windy and humid and the pollen count is at its highest.[3] However, Boots sales data suggests that Brits are experiencing symptoms earlier this year. Furthermore, studies suggest that hayfever seasons elsewhere are starting earlier and becoming more intense as a result of climate change.[4]

Marc Donovan, Chief Pharmacist at Boots, says: “With the hayfever season looking like it is starting earlier than ever before, it’s important to limit your exposure to pollen by keeping windows and doors shut as much as possible, shower and change your clothes after you have been outside to wash pollen off and wear wraparound sunglasses to stop pollen getting into your eyes.

 “If you are already experiencing symptoms of hayfever a member of the pharmacy team can provide advice about products or medicines to help treat your specific symptoms. If symptoms persist talk to your Boots pharmacist who will be able to discuss other options which might be more appropriate for you.”

Boots is the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer and offers the largest range of health and wellness products. At over 2,200 stores, Boots pharmacists can recommend the appropriate over-the-counter hayfever remedies for patients, including medicines that can only be bought under the supervision of a pharmacist. People with severe symptoms of hayfever can access advice, and where appropriate, prescription only medicine, through the Boots Online Doctor Hayfever Treatment service.[5]

Popular products at Boots to help relieve or prevent hayfever symptoms include[6]: 


Boots One-a-Day Hayfever & Allergy Relief 10mg tablets, contains loratadine* £2.99

Fusion Allergy Lozenges £7.99

Boots Allergy Barrier Nasal Spray £7.99

Allevia 120mg Tablets, contains fexofenadine* £8.39

Boots Hayfever Relief 2% w/v Eye Drops, contains sodium cromoglycate* £4.99

Boots Allergy Eye Mist £9.99


[1] Sales increased by 27% from 30th January to 19th March 2022 compared to the same period last year.

[2]Allergy UK, March 2022

[3]Met Office, March 2022

[4]  Nature Communications, March 2022

[5]Access to prescription only medicine is subject to a consultation with a clinician to assess suitability. Charges apply

[6]The Chief Pharmacist does not endorse any of these products

*Always read the label



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Boots is the UK’s leading health and beauty retailer with over 52,000 team members and 2,100 stores, ranging from local community pharmacies to large destination health and beauty stores.*

Boots serves its customers and patients for life as the leading provider of healthcare on the high street and the UK’s number one beauty destination. It offers an unrivalled depth and breadth of products, which incorporates its extensive own brand range and innovative portfolio of brands, including No7, the UK’s No1 skincare brand, Soap & Glory, Liz Earle Beauty and Sleek MakeUP.

2024 marks Boots’ 175th anniversary year. Founder John Boot opened a herbalist store in Nottingham in 1849 to offer an affordable alternative to traditional medicines. His son Jesse expanded the business to become a modern retailer and the biggest chemist in Britain. Throughout its history, Boots has listened, learned and innovated, and it continues to challenge itself to improve its products and services every day.

Boots is part of Walgreens Boots Alliance, which is a global leader in pharmacy-led, health and wellbeing retail.  More company information is available on

*Figures accurate as of 30 November 2023