9 Headache & Migraine Hacks | Girl Talk Tuesday

9 Headache & Migraine Hacks | Girl Talk Tuesday

One thing I’ve got plenty of experience with is headaches.  Listen, I’m not bragging about that experience…  I’m just saying that I know a thing or two about that nasty word.  And migraines?  Girl, I got you there too.  If you’ve never had a migraine, count yourself blessed. Very, very blessed.

I felt like Girl Talk Tuesday was the best time for us to tackle this topic since we talk about things like period cramps and small breasts.  A lot of times headaches and migraines are hormonal.  Other times they’re hereditary, a result of your environment or a plethora of other reasons.  If you read my birth control blog post, then you know that I went through a dark period of time when migraines literally took over my life.  I learned so much about my body and how to deal with headaches/migraines during that time.  I wanted to share the wealth with any of my sisters who also suffer.

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

Headaches Migraines Hacks Girl Talk Tuesday Angela Lanter Hello Gorgeous

9 Headache and Migraine Hacks:

  1. Pain Killers.  This one is a duh, I know.  But the reason it’s #1 on my list is to not wait until it’s too late to take something for the pain.  Many times I feel like I can just deal with the pain, because it’s no that bad…  Then, all of sudden, the pain takes a quick turn and I’m in severe pain.  Listen to your body.  Take a small dose to knock it out before it gets worse if you know that you have a tendency to get worse before you get better.  I personally use either Advil or Excedrin Migraine.
  2. Chug that water!  Girl, stay hydrated.  Being dehydrated can be the only reason you’re in pain, so try to stay on top of your water intake daily.
  3. Find a cool, dark place.  My migraines come with an aura, so I get about a 30 minute warning.  At the first sign of migraine (aura) I pop an Excedrin Migraine and go find a cool, dark place to lay down.  I’ve found that if I do this immediately, I sometimes only get a mild headache.  If I wait too long, then the headache comes full force.  Being in a cool, dark room relaxes your eyes and keeps you calm.
  4. Turn down the volume.  Being in the quiet will dramatically help reduce the pain sometimes.
  5. Keep an ice pack on hand.  I’ve found that an ice pack placed on the base of my head/neck area really helps manage the pain.
  6. Invest in a steamer.  When my headaches are allergy or sinus related, I find that oftentimes I’m just really dried out.  Sitting under my steamer is such a relief during a bad headache or migraine.
  7. Rinse those passages!  If you’re suffering from allergy or sinus headaches, consider doing regular nasal passages.  As my allergist put it to me, we wash our bodies every day, but we never wash our nasal passages.  Think about all the dust, dirt and pollen we breathe in on the regular.  A nasal rinse can really help to keep those allergy headaches to a minimum.
  8. Olbas oil.  I’m a big believer in homeopathic medicine.  When I can, I use Olbas oil to treat my headaches instead of popping yet another painkiller.
  9. Watch your diet.  Have you noticed that your headaches or migraines come from certain triggers?  Maybe it’s only the week before your period?  Or maybe it’s when you skip your morning cup of coffee?  For me, I know MSG is a major trigger.  Consider journaling your headaches, what you did and ate the day before, and maybe you’ll begin to see a pattern form.

What are your headache tips and tricks?  I feel like I’ve tried just about anything and everything under the sun, these are just the things I’ve found that actually work for me.  Leave a comment and let me know how you treat your headaches.  Also, if you’re noticing more headaches than normal lately, go see your doctor.

Photos by Kara Coleen.

What I’m Wearing:

Sweater (sold out); similar here and here  //  Frame Flare Jeans  //  Steve Madden Edit Booties



  1. Jessica
    May 24, 2017 / 5:28 AM

    Girl, I feel you on this one. I started getting severe migraine headaches when I was a baby. I got them every 4 to 5 weeks like clock work, until age 12. They started spreading out a little at that time to about every 2 months. They again started spreading to every 4 months in high school, and then eventually to now where it’s pretty rare for me to have one. As a young child I really had no warning other than we knew they would come every month. Worse than that, there really wasn’t anything I could do since I would almost immediately be sick with them for about 12 hours, and then the next 12 were a recovery phase. Doctors couldn’t see any sort of specific triggers for me. The best thing for me was trying to sleep it off in between times of being sick. I would sleep in a dark, cool room.

    As I got older and could kind of sense them coming on a little better we found out about Zomig. It’s literally a miracle worker. It does make me a little sleepy, but it takes the headache and moves it to your neck. I do get a little stiffness in that area for a bit, but to me it’s completely worth it.

    • May 24, 2017 / 11:21 AM

      Oh my gosh, I’m so sorry you had to deal with that through childhood! I’m glad you’ve found relief as an adult. 🙂

  2. Katherine Cagle
    May 24, 2017 / 6:01 AM

    Mirgraines run in my family. It’s good to have someone who knows what it is like because the pain is sometimes hard to explain to someone who has never had one. I have recently had a bad case of mirgraine season. My doctor has suggested I start Botox to relieve some of the pain. That is my next step because I am like you. I have literally tried everything. I also have a medication that I am supposed to take right as I feel one coming on. I also saw where you can get a pressure point pierced on the inside of your ear. I am willing to try anything to relieve the pain. I wouldn’t wish a mirgraine on my worst enemy because they are so evil.

    • May 24, 2017 / 11:21 AM

      Mine too! I got mine from my aunt (my dad’s sister). I’ve heard about Botox and the ear piercing. If you try either, please report back and let us know your results!

  3. Lisa
    May 24, 2017 / 6:57 AM

    Rubbing peppermint oil, methanol or eucalyptus oil on your temples works. I use burts bees peppermint lip balm and always carry it with me. So if I am not home that also works. A hot wash cloth or water bottle works for me better than ice packs. Icy hot can work too. I havent had a migraine since I was a teenager but I do still get a variety of headaches. The most common for me are ones from not enough sleep.

    • May 24, 2017 / 11:20 AM

      I sometimes use heat too! I think that’s why I like the steamer so much, it’s soothing. 🙂

  4. Risha
    May 24, 2017 / 8:17 AM

    Girl, I get migraines with aura too! So horrible. I’ve found that mine are caused by misalignment of the top two vertebrae in my neck. I try to get regular adjustments with my chiropractor and that limits them significantly. I also use essential oils to calm my neck down. DoTerra makes a blend called PastTense that’s pretty effective. I also sleep on a contoured pillow to keep proper curvature of my neck while I sleep. Thanks for this post with all the tips! I think water is the #1 remedy I forget…

    • May 24, 2017 / 11:19 AM

      They’re THE WORST! I’ve been migraine free since coming off birth control, Praise the Lord!
      I still get headaches from time to time, but they’re usually hormonal or stress/tension. I’m trying a new chiropractor tomorrow, hoping to get some neck relief!

  5. Sherri
    May 24, 2017 / 9:42 AM

    Great tips! In 2010 I was tootling along, having a great life, in the best shape I’ve been in since college. Within a couple of months, my legs felt very heavy, I got really fatigued and foggy, and got to the point I couldn’t walk across a room. I could barely walk for three years, and finally, after nine doctors, my neurologist found I was having a continuous migraine down my spine. After a massive dose of Aleve, it came screaming up into my head for the next year. Then it became a circular migraine — so for 30 minutes I would speak in an Irish accent, then for 30 minutes I would smell chlorine, then I would act drunk, then I would need to sleep, etc. It’s taken many years and lots of therapies to get me to the place where I am migraine-free most of the time. But I still can’t exercise without crashing and getting a migraine — and exercise was one of my favorite things, so it’s felt like a big loss. Everything you said is in my arsenal of things to do at the first sign of an aura. I have a designated migraine room that’s really dark. In the end I usually have to go to bed and try to sleep it off. I hope yours go away completely, and become a distant memory. <3

    • May 24, 2017 / 11:18 AM

      Oh my word! I’ve never heard anything like this! I hope you kick this condition once and for all!!

  6. Stephanie Cole
    May 24, 2017 / 12:20 PM

    I’ve been dealing with migraines for about 15 years now. I see a Neurologist on a regular basis. I’ve been through every medication there is and none of them really work. I basically have to take a ton of ibuprofen, sit in a dark quiet room and try to sleep them off. I have the ear piercing and honestly it didn’t really help. I’m going to try Botox next but I’m deathly afraid of needles so I’m trying to put it off as long as possible. There is an app called “Migraine Buddy”. Its the perfect tool for you to track symptoms, triggers, etc. I use it to track everything and it’s really helpful for when I need to discuss with my doctor. There are also special eyeglasses you can get if you are sensitive to light during a migraine. They are made by my co-workers brother called Theraspecs. A bit on the expensive side but really worth it especially if you work under harsh lighting.

    • May 25, 2017 / 10:04 AM

      Please report back and let us know how the Botox works!

  7. Bethany
    May 24, 2017 / 12:26 PM

    I have had chronic migraines for 7 years now. I am 29. I have tried everything under the sun in terms of medications, natural remedies and alternative therapies (osteopaths, acupuncture, biofeedback, botox, etc) with no consistent relief.

    I also got my daith pierced 7 months ago and no change. I have heard it can really help so would still recommend it since it’s fairly inexpensive and if it doesn’t work you can just remove it. For me, it was about something realistic that I could do, that was within my control, and worst case senario, I can cross it off my list and stop wondering.

    I am seeing a NUCCA chiropractor now with some minimal results but she reports that my neck is healing so hopefully my pain will decrease soon. Trying not to hope that it will works since it is so devastating when you get to the point where you have to accept that it is not changing. Beyond the actual pain, is the constant emotional roller coaster of living with pain and trying different things which can be just as brutal imo.

    AlsoI am forcing myself to sleep in my back which is really tough but I think a lot of my pain is muscular and referred pain from my traps and neck.

    So glad you are not suffering like you were before. Chronic pain is a black hole and a totally awful thing that I would never wish on anyone. I might order that oil you mentioned. Is it roll-on one?

    • May 25, 2017 / 10:06 AM

      I’ve never heard of a NUCCA Chiropractor? I’m headed to the chiro today myself. I’m a side sleeper but I often wake up on my back with my arms above my head, which I know can’t be good for my shoulders. I’m pretty sure you can buy Olbas in roll-on form!

      • Bethany
        May 27, 2017 / 5:08 PM

        NUCCA focuses on the upper neck exclusively and I think they have their own school as well. It has been around for 60 years but I had never heard of it till a few months ago. Their analysis is based on different concepts and even their x-ray techniques are different.

        • June 13, 2017 / 6:12 PM

          That is so fascinating! Thank you for sharing!

  8. Brittany Blackburn
    May 24, 2017 / 7:35 PM

    I love standing under the hottest shower I can stand, letting the water fall on my head. I also rub my temples & use my middle finger to press firmly against the bridge of my nose, all the way up my forehead to my hairline. I do this above each eyebrow, too.

  9. May 25, 2017 / 9:10 AM

    I am currently home with a “post-migraine hangover headache”, and really feeling this blog post – thank you! You’ve mentioned all my go-to tricks, but I wanted to add that I also try to keep my feet and hand warm while having an icepack on my neck/base of my skull. The heat on my feet seems to draw the blood from my throbbing head. Also, lavender essential oil to calm an upset migraine tummy. Verrry important.
    Wishing you continued migraine-free days!

    • May 25, 2017 / 10:07 AM

      Ugh, I’m sorry! I have this lavender oil pillow mist I love. Lavender is so soothing. 🙂

  10. May 26, 2017 / 4:00 AM

    Oh…gosh…headaches are the worst! Everything you’ve said is 100% true. I’m not sure, though, which specific oil you use as I’ve not heard of that one. I do use an essential oil (YL’s peppermint oil) and it has helped so much, especially since I’m allergic to most ingredients in basic pain killers. I may smell like Christmas most times, but no headache. (Plus nothing is wrong with smelling like Christmas.)

    Do you have more info on the oils that you use? I’d greatly appreciate it if you share. Thank you for this post.

    • June 13, 2017 / 8:18 PM

      THE WORST!!! Nothing wrong with smelling like Christmas!
      I picked my oil blend up in Whole Foods. 🙂

  11. Elizabeth Williams
    May 26, 2017 / 8:46 PM

    Your tips are awesome! I’ve had headaches that have not turned into migraines all week due to end of year teacher stress, the emotions of sending 8th graders off to high school, and hormones. I’ve been following my own recipes to avoid migraines that involve many of your tips, too!

    I would add:
    1. Staying fed! When blood sugar levels drop too low it can turn into a migraine.
    2. Biofreeze: rubbed along the temples, base of head and down the neck, across shoulders, and a bit down the spine.

    I love your posts Angela! I’m so glad to have stumbled across them when I read an article where your husband was talking about his faith and amazing wife. 🙂

    • June 13, 2017 / 8:17 PM

      Love your tips! I’m so glad you’re a part of the Gorgeous Fam, Elizabeth! 🙂

  12. Alyssa
    June 8, 2017 / 8:33 AM

    Angela is it true you are that Timeless will be filming in LA instead of Vancouver now? I hope not I want you to stay in my country!!

    • June 13, 2017 / 6:08 PM

      We haven’t been told yet where it’s filming but we’re hoping that rumor is true! We’d love to stay in our own home this season. 🙂

  13. Tiffany Keller
    October 26, 2017 / 12:17 PM

    I have suffered from migraines to sinus headaches my whole life. My mother and grandmother are the exact same, I recently went on a spree to find something natural that would take care of my headaches because as often as I get them it can’t be good for my body to take all of this medication. So during my spree I spoke with a older lady that swears by essential oils, so I was telling her how I suffer from headaches and she preceded to tell me about peppermint oil and if I would mix it with a little bit of coconut oil and rub a little on my chest and on my temples when I felt a headache or migraine coming on that it would release the tension and the headache would go away. So I have tried it multiple times and this is my go to now.

    • October 31, 2017 / 12:09 AM

      Ugh, I feel for you, Tiffany! Oils are amazing! Sadly, when you’re pregnant, there are many oils you can’t use.

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