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Fabulous, feel good gift ideas for someone diagnosed with cancer: a Guest Blog by Anikka Burton

Wednesday, 21 May 2014 15:15:00 Europe/London

picture graphic of website home page showing homepage Annika Burton founder of gift website

We first came across the lovely Anikka Burton, left, founder of the wonderful and truly innovative Not Another Bunch Of Flowers online gift boutique, on Twitter. We immediately LOVED her fantastic approach to being there for loved ones with original, pampering and gorgeous 'feel good' gifts based on her own experiences having been through breast cancer. We'll leave the rest for Anikka to explain, in this lovely guest blog she has kindly written for us, with her handpicked gift recommendations and tips!

Get Well Gifts For Cancer Patients

With flowers being the quick and easy ‘go to’ option when someone is ill, and with many hospitals now banning flowers, what is the best gift for a loved one facing cancer? Obviously the most important thing you can do is to be there for them, help out whenever you can, listen and give them a big hug when needed. However, many people also like to send a token of their love and support, so rather than inundate them with flowers, why not send a more thoughtful gift that will stand out from the rest?
picture of get well brown greeting card
(Get Well Card available at Not Another Bunch Of Flowers).
When I was diagnosed with cancer a couple of years ago I was overwhelmed by flowers from well-wishers. It gave me a real boost on my down days knowing that so many people were rooting for me, but the flowers sent or brought to me in hospital were confiscated as they are banned on the wards – and the flowers I received at home soon died while my treatment went on and on … and on! This inspired me to set up Not Another Bunch Of Flowers – handpicked pretty and pampering get well gifts that are a bit more thoughtful, useful and longer-lasting than flowers.

The perfect gifts that pamper during cancer treatment

When you’re poorly and either recovering from surgery or going through treatment, your home comforts become really
magazine hot water bottle and pyjamas gift set
(Cosy Night In Gift Package available at Not Another Bunch Of Flowers).
It’s also difficult to find ways to treat yourself, as you might not have the energy to travel and socialise, massages and beauty treatments are off limits and food can lose all of its appeal. So a bit of home pampering and ‘me time’ becomes  a real treat. I have picked gifts to help patients feel cosy and comfy along with some lovely pampering treats that are safe for use during treatment. They are all gifts that would be nice to receive normally and nothing clinical, as we have enough of that with all of our hospital treatments.

Some tips on what NOT to give!

When picking gifts, you also need to be wary of the ingredients used as many patients will choose or be advised to avoid certain things. Some choose to avoid dairy and sugar. Many become quite sensitive to beauty products and conscious of the chemicals used in them and switch to more natural, organic products. My gifts are selected with this in mind - and below are the bestsellers!

My Top 5 Gift Ideas For Loved Ones Diagnosed With Cancer

pink make-up bag and cosmetics
1)     Chemo Care Packages  I have had so much lovely feedback from patients who have received these little gift sets (such as the one above). They contain useful things such as natural sweets to help with nausea, pretty berets and beanies, cooling pads and natural refreshing body sprays for hot flushes and nail kits full of goodies to help protect finger and toenails during treatment.
white female pyjamas with pink floral print
2)      Cosy Pyjamas and Kimono Robes Much prettier and comfier than the standard issue hospital gowns and a bit of a treat to replace the tatty old dressing gown at home. Luxurious nightwear injects a bit of fabulousness and femininity whilst being forced to lie among drips and bed pans. Also great for recuperating at home as it feels wonderful to slip into a fresh pair of pyjamas when you’re stuck in bed for days at a time.
range of skin care body wash and moisturiser
3)      Natural toiletries When buying beauty products as a gift for a cancer patient, you need to avoid heavily-scented products which can cause nausea and be careful with the ingredients as skin can be very sensitive and the patient may have switched to more organic and natural products (Burt's Bees set, as an example, above). The most popular range I stock is completely organic and natural and was specifically formulated for cancer patients. The pampering goodies on Not Another Bunch Of Flowers include a relaxing bath oil, soothing balms, a cooling facial mist and body spray. Our natural lavender pillow spray is great for hospital stays to naturally soothe and relax while masking the distinctive hospital smell.
floral bedding cushions and quilt on couch
4)      Couch Quilt and Pillow Sets Perfect for snuggling up on the sofa or to make a hospital or hospice bed a bit more homely.
blue lap tray on bed
5)      Trays I have a variety of trays including beanbag laptrays which are really useful for resting your laptop on, reading or eating in bed. However, my favourite is this one. It has a spot for a bell, tissues, soup and brave little soldiers – all to be enjoyed in front of a bit of daytime TV!
We  ♥ these great gift ideas, and what Anikka is doing to help others find the perfect gift for someone special.  Thanks SO much to Anikka for putting together these wonderful ideas for the Suburban Turban blog! :) For more information and to shop online, please go to

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