Our product picks for cold and flu season

It’s that time of year again, when days and nights are filled with runny noses and kids coughing. So we decided to put a few flu and cold products to the test to get you prepared for another germ invasion. All of these products are available at local stores or online at the major retailers.

The best humidifiers, thermometers and more to help your family recover quickly from their sick days.

Solid and functional

  • Starry Night, Vicks, $44.99
  • GermFree ColdMoisture humidifiers, Vicks, $59.99

Our editors loved how easy these two were to fill and dump. Weadmit we missed the comforting image of steam coming out of thehumidifier-these have an invisible mist-but we could feel a strongcurrent of cool air coming out of both. Both came with germ-freefilters and were the workhorses of the bunch-solid and functional.Kids will like the stars projected on the ceiling with the StarryNight humidifier.

Local and good looking

  • Ultrasonic Cool Mist Humidifiers, Crane, $39.99-$45.99

The owl-shaped humidifier we tested was adorable and thedouble row of mist spewing out of its head was moist andcomforting. This one was also easy to fill and clean. Theteardrop-shaped humidifier blew out a nice stream of cool mist andwas attractive enough even to be used in mom’s room. We also likedthat Crane is a local company-it’s headquartered inBensenville.

Fast and Easy

  • Exergen TemporalScanner, $39.99

We were eager to try this thermometer after seeing it onTV commercials. Taking a temperature is as super easy and fast aspromised. It proved accurate, too, alerting on a fever in one ofthe five testers who was sick.

Most accurate

  • 3-in-1 Family Thermometer, Summer Infant, $30.29

This one was extremely accurate. The thermometer was easyto use and includes three separate attachments for rectal, oral andunderarm. Best of all, all the attachments store within thethermometer-no searching for missing pieces in the middle of thenight.

Mixed results

  • Behind Ear Gentle Touch Thermometer, Vicks, $32.99

We had mixed results with this thermometer. It was very easy andquick to use, but the thermometer gave the same reading when testedon several people and failed to register a fever on one of ourtesters who actually had a fever.

Cute and cuddly

  • Thermal-Aid Zoo, $19.95

These super-cute stuffed animals are actually heat and coldpacks perfect for feverish heads or sore bellies. Our testers lovedsnuggling with the warm bears after they were heated in themicrowave and the cold packs beat messy ice bags that end updripping all over pillows.

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