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I consider myself to be an extremely organised and very methodical person; something that drives my husband totally potty, as I know exactly where something is at any given time. In addition to my tidiness I always ensure I have a good supply of products in both our first aid box and medicine cabinet and whilst waiting in Lloyds Pharmacy for a prescription some time ago I had a rummage through their shelves and discovered a fabulous item called Flupak manufactured by a British company named PatientPak Ltd. As we have now seen the last of our "summer" and are heading for the colder months it is inevitable that those cough and cold germs will start to affect some of us. Consequently, I felt it an appropriate time to discuss my experience with using this product.
WHAT IS FLUPAK?
It is basically as the title suggests and that is a pack containing a number of useful products to assist in the prevention of the flu. I thought it an extremely handy product to own, particularly as the items contained within are suitable for the killing of 99.9% of germs together with influenza viruses including Swine Flu H1N1 and Bird Flu H5N1. Whilst the pack does not contain items to cure any of the aforementioned viruses, it contains products that will assist in their prevention and enable the user to carefully sanitise their environment to reduce the spreading of germs.
WHAT IS CONTAINED WITHIN THE PACK?
The pack is made from an extremely sturdy transparent plastic measuring 18 cm x 14 cm and has a plastic zip on the upper section, which is identical to the storage cases for papers that you would purchase in a store such as WH Smiths. I purchased several of these Flupaks due to the fantastic price, which I will provide at the end of the review and all but one had fully operational zips. I keep one of these packs in the glove compartment of my car, but due to its' size had to remove a lot of junk! There is a large cardboard sleeve providing a list of the five items contained within the pack and I will discuss them in the next section of my review.
~ Sanitising Wipes ~
We are provided with 15 wipes, which we are informed are both antiviral and antibacterial and these are contained within a small sturdy plastic packet, which offers a clean and fresh appearance with its' calming colours of green and white. Accessing the wipes is by way of the small tab contained on the upper section, which is easily lifted to reveal a good sized opening. The tab securely reseals to enable the remaining wipes to stay clean and moist in readiness for their next use. Considering the packaging is fairly small I was expecting miniature wipes, but the reasonable thickness white woven wipes are of a good size measuring in at 23 cm x 19 cm. They offer a clean and fresh green tea aroma together with a sufficient amount of moisture and I regularly use them on areas such as door handles, the toilet seats and flushes and the telephones; all of which are well known for harbouring germs. I'm a little apprehensive about using the wipes on items such as remote controls and the desktop pc and laptop keyboards for fear that the liquid will dispense below the keys.
The sanitising wipes are very similar to any other brands that I've used with the wiped surfaces drying fairly quickly. As I keep a pack of them in the car I will regularly give the steering wheel and gear stick a quick wipe over, as these are also areas that harbour a fair amount of germs and are very often neglected. The wipes are very gentle on the skin and have never caused me to suffer with any irritation, such as dryness or itching. I do not intend copying the entire list of ingredients into this review, but would advise that the wipes contain alcohol. The used wipes should be discarded with normal household waste with the outer packaging being suitable for recycling. I particularly like these wipes due to their subtle and favourable scent, which unlike some other brands of wipes, which offer a rather strong clinical aroma. I also like the fact that they do not contain any bleach, which often causes an irritation to my skin. With other brands I've used there is normally a small symbol providing the length of time the wipes should be used after opening. However, the only information we are provided is that the expiry date with mine being in well over 12 months' time.
~ Sanitising Spray ~
We are provided with 60 ml of antiviral/antibacterial spray, which is contained within a sturdy plastic bottle; the packaging of which mirrors the pack of sanitising wipes and that is clean and fresh. It delivers the identical properties to that of the wipes as we are informed that it kills influenza virus, swine flu, bird flu and 99.9% of germs. Manufacturers always claim that 99.9% of germs are killed, so I wonder what happens to the 0.1%? The bottle has a transparent plastic lid, which is easily removed and firmly replaced to provide the assurance that the product is protected from dust and germs. For the initial use the pump action dispenser needs to be pressed a few times to draw the liquid into the unit where a fine mist is dispensed.
The purpose of the spray is identical to that of the wipes and it can be used on any surfaces. However, what I favoured with this spray is that it is also suitable for spraying on bed linen, clothing and furnishings. Due to the fact that I suffer with systematic lupus erythematosus (commonly known as lupus), my immune system is considerably weakened and I am susceptible to every cough and cold germ that is doing the rounds. As a result I am extra cautious with cleaning my home with highly effect products and whilst I would not describe myself as paranoid it is definitely a necessity in our home. My husband suffers with diabetes, so he is also at high risk, so when I have a cold I will regularly use this product to spray the bed linen, particularly as I am worried that I will pass him my germs - we sound a right pair, don't we?
The spray delivers a delicate yet very pleasant green tea aroma, which is slightly less evident than with the wipes. I find it extremely handy to spray a piece of kitchen roll and clean areas such as in between the computer and laptop keys as well as the television remote controls. The spray does not contain any bleach and is therefore, safe for the skin and I cannot report of suffering from any adverse effects. The directions for use on hard surfaces are to spray and wipe with a cloth or sponge and allow to dry; a process that tends to take only 30 seconds or so.
You may think I am fanatical about germs, which I'm not, but I will always take the necessary precautions where I can. I have a thing about handling money where I will always wash my hands afterwards, but my husband does not see any problem with touching money and then preparing a meal, which is something that drives me absolutely mad! There is a lengthy list of ingredients contained on the reverse of the bottle, which I do not intend copying into this review, but I would advise that the spray contains alcohol. Identical to that of the wipes there is no timescale for using the spray after opening, as there is an expiry date on the underside of the bottle of well over 12 months' time. The bottle can be recycled once empty.
~ Tissues ~
The third item contained within FluPak is a packet of 10 tissues with the appearance again mirroring the afore-mentioned products. I had expected the tissues to contain some sort of antibacterial ingredients, but would advise that they are simply ordinary tissues. We are even provided with directions on how to use them, but I think I'll skip those! The pack opens like any other pack I've used by way of a sticky tab, which sufficiently seals back down to protect the remaining tissues. The tissues are 2-ply and although the manufacturer claims that they are soft I found them a little too hard when I used them to simply blow my nose. Consequently, they would be far too harsh for those times when I suffer with a cold because unless I use balsam tissues I suffer with very sore, cracked and broken skin. The tissues are very absorbent and seem to be able to cope with my very forceful nose blow without a large hole appearing! I'm unsure why, but there is no recycling symbol displayed on the outer packaging, as there is simply a small image of a man dropping the empty packaging into a litter bin.
~ Disposable Bag ~
The purpose of this item is that if you are unable to bin your used wipes and/or tissues you should store them in this fairly sturdy transparent plastic bag measuring 27 cm x 45 cm. The upper section of the bag has a sealing section where the protective covering needs to be removed and the top of the bag subsequently turned over similar to that of an envelope and is safely sealed. Personally, I don't find this item of much use, but for those with children it would come in extremely handy, particularly for car journeys.
~ A Guide to Good Hygiene ~
The final item contained within the pack is a small cardboard leaflet, which provides a little information relating to each of the items in the pack together with a few lines of directions on how to use them. Some consumers may find the leaflet a little patronising, as it provides information on the precautions that should be taken on how to protect against catching the flu. However, it is the type of information that you would expect to find in a GP's surgery where we are advised on simple tasks such as sanitising areas that have been touched by an infected person. Further information advises the reader on the symptoms of flu and how the virus spreads, but most of the advice is common sense.
I think that this is a fabulous pack of items, which has given me the assurance that I am doing all that I can in the prevention of flu and germs in my home. Obviously, I am unable to evidence if these products actually work, which would be the same with any cleaning product that claims to kill 99.9% of germs. However, there is some important information contained on the outer cardboard packaging, which advises that the antiviral and antibacterial items within the pack contain a patented antimicrobial formula, which has been tested in accordance with European Standards EN1500, EN12054 and EN1276. Consequently, I feel reassured that I am using high quality products that deliver the results that they promise. I cannot recommend this pack highly enough, as I feel it is an important first aid essential and as a result, Flupak receives 5 stars from me.
PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
I purchased my FluPak from Lloyds Pharmacy and this is the best part, as I found it on one of their bargain shelves where customers were able to choose one product and get a further two for free. This product was marked up at just 99p, so I had a further two packs free of charge. Consequently, I ended up spending £3.96 and walking away with 12 packs! I have checked on their website and would advise the pack is listed at 99p with no special offers, but you may be able to locate the same offer as I did in one of their high street stores. It seems that none of the items can be purchased individually, but I would advise that you are able to make a purchase of a 100 ml bottle of hand protect gel for 99p, which hardly seems worth it when you can purchase the entire pack of similar items for the same price.
I hope you found my review useful and would thank you for reading.
This review will appear on both Ciao and Dooyoo under the same user name.