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Free Ways to Stay Cool

Summer isn’t over yet! In fact, with the most recent heatwave, it’s felt hotter these past couple of weeks than I think it’s been all summer long. In light of what seems like a never-ending summer, I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to worry about the heat. We have a list of free ideas for you to beat the heat: inside, outside, day and night.

Indoors:

One of the easiest ways to stay cool indoors is to turn on the A/C if you have one. But on particularly hot days, running the A/C can drive up your electric costs and using up too much energy isn’t particularly cost-effective. And if you don’t have an air conditioner, your fate may seem grim. However, there are plenty of other options for staying cool inside without running up your electricity costs.

  1. Ice water – Drinking ice water is refreshing and can help cool you down. But did you know that the quickest way to cool down is dipping your toes in an icy bath? Cooling the many “pulse points” on your feet can bring down your body temperature. So fill up a bucket or bath with cold water and to give yourself a good cool-down.
  2. Freeze your sheets – It’s tough to get a good night’s sleep when it’s hot outside. Stick your sheets in a bag and throw them in the freezer to give them a good cool down before bed. While they won’t stay cold all night, they’ll help keep you comfortable while you fall asleep.
  3. Create a DIY-Icepack – Fill up a water bottle about ¾ of the way and freeze it. Then, when you need a cooldown, pull it out and apply it to the back of your neck, wrists, forehead or toes for quick body cooling.
  4. Wet your clothes and sheets – Dip a scarf or loose-shirt in some water and wring it out so it’s not dripping. Then wear it on your body to cool down. You can do the same with your top sheet at night before bed to keep you cool while you fall asleep.
  5. Turn off the lights and unplug electricity – When electrical appliances are running, they give off heat. But turning off the lights and unplugging and turning off any appliances you aren’t using, you’re keeping the house cooler by not adding additional heat sources.

Outdoors:

Some of the cooling methods listed above, such as dampening your clothes and using a home-made ice pack, can help you stay cool outdoors as well. But there are times when you might find yourself without these resources to help you out. Working outdoors in the summer heat can be particularly taxing, but we have several tried and true methods that could help.

  1. Chase the shade – Learn what the shade patterns are in work areas or in outdoor spaces you’re familiar with. Plan your schedule around the shade if you can. If you’re just out and about, find a tree to hang out under or walk on the shady side of the street.
  2. Wear proper clothing – Choosing to wear clothing that is light-weight, like cotton, or moisture-wicking and light in color can help keep you much cooler than heavier or dark color clothing.
  3. Stay hydrated – Make sure to drink plenty of fluids, not only the day of, but days prior as well if you can plan in advance. Staying hydrated can help your body better regulate your temperature in addition to preventing heat-related illness.
  4. Find a watering hole – If you know someone with a pool, help them plan a pool day and enjoy the cooling benefits of pool-time. If you don’t have pool access, take a trip to a local river, beach, or lake. Or simply turn on the hose and have a water fight at home.
  5. Spend time at local shop – Shopping malls and local libraries are often much cooler than spending time at home without A/C or outdoors. And they’re free to visit. Spending a few hours at one of these places can be your option sometimes to avoid the heat.

Next time you find yourself without A/C, don’t sweat it. There are so many easy and free ways to stay cool in the heat.

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