Here is a couple of home made goodies to help when you get congested. You can use them not only when you have a cold but for relief if you have congestion from allergies.
These two take advantage of steam to help you feel better. The first is for when your awake the second is for use with a humidifier.
Take 3 Tablespoons of chopped fresh thyme, sage, peppermint, eucalyptus and or pine needles place in a bowl and add boiling water. place a towel over your head and the bowl and breath for 10 minutes. Repeat as necessary. It can be a little boring sitting there so I suggest playing some nice relaxing music while you do this to help pass the time.
For this one you will either need a cotton ball or a humidifier with a place to put the mixture. Some are designed with a small cup or dip next to the steam vent.
Mix together 2 to 4 drops of peppermint essential oil, eucalyptus essential oil, and winter green essential oil. Then soak a cotton ball and place next to steam vent or put in cup on humidifier.
In both these recipes the steam helps loosen congestion and the herbs and oils helps sooth and relieve the congestion. Just like the stuff you buy in the store with out the gooey stuff on your chest.