25 ways to keep cool

I published this last year on 25th July – today it’s 25th June, but I thought it might be useful to update it and re-post it. It’s hot out there!!

A couple of other things to think about – things have changed since this was posted –

a) Remember you might have to queue outside shops etc for a while – which means you might be stood in direct sunlight for longer than you’d intended. Wear sunscreen.

b) When the pubs and restaurants re-open there will be more outdoor spaces – which means more time spent outside in the sun. Wear sunscreen.

So, gleaned from a bit of time spent in the tropics, and in Australia, I hope these ideas will help you get through the next few days and nights.

  1. It’s hot. It’s very hot. Just accept it. Kicking against it or getting cross about it will only make you more hotter and more bothered-er. Chill…
  2. Move slowly. Saunter. And think slowly too. You won’t be able to work with your normal vim and vigour.
  3. Drink lots. And lots. Drink more than you normally drink. Water is best, but juices, pop, and even tea and coffee are better than nothing. An ice cold lager cuts through a thirst better than anything – but don’t over-indulge with the alcohol as it is de-hydrating in the long run.
  4. Find the coolest place and stay there. A room on the shady side of the house, a spot in the garden that catches the breeze – or if you’re desperate, head to your nearest shopping centre or sports centre, or any public place that has air-conditioning. This isn’t ‘normal’ hot weather, so extreme measures are called for. My garage down in the basement is the coolest place in my house, so I’ll be finding jobs to do down there tomorrow. If you’re in the area, you’re welcome to pop by!!
  5. Close the windows and the curtains of rooms that get the sun – and check again midday as the sun will have moved round.
  6. Drink lots. And lots.
  7. As the temperature starts to drop in the evening, open as many windows as you can without compromising your security. You want to try to create a through-put of air.
  8. If you’ve got a fan, only run it if you’re actually in the room. Fans work by moving the air around, and the air moving against your skin makes you feel cooler. The fan doesn’t actually keep the room cool – in fact, with a motor running continuously, it’s more likely to increase the temperature of the room if it’s on a long time!!
  9. If you haven’t got a fan, check your fan heaters – they often have a ‘no heat’ option. Ditto hair dryers!!
  10. Avoid making the house hotter than it needs to be – don’t even think about cooking or ironing, or using the tumble dryer, or anything else that creates heat. If you must, do it early in the morning or late in the evening.
  11. Do physical stuff either early in the morning or late in the evening. Spend the middle of the day doing as little as possible. Siestas were invented for a reason!!
  12. Drink lots. And lots.
  13. If you need to cool off quickly, apply a cold compress to the wrists, the forearms and the sides of your neck.
  14. After a shower, don’t be in any hurry to dry off – damp skin will keep you cool for a while. Oh, and have a tepid shower rather than a hot one or a cold one.
  15. It’s tempting to wear nothing in bed when it’s this hot – but most people are more comfortable wearing thin cotton, a thin baggy T-shirt for example.
  16. If you don’t need to go out in the heat of the day, then don’t. Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun…
  17. Drink lots. And lots.
  18. The other side of the pillow is cool, so turn it over.
  19. Take a hot water bottle to bed, filled with cold water
  20. You’ll probably not feel as hungry, and you’ll almost certainly not feel like cooking – so put together a salad. Smaller meals are all you need, as long as you’re drinking lots. And lots.
  21. Ditch the duvet, and just have the duvet cover or a sheet over you
  22. Have a bottle of water by the bed – if you keep it in the freezer during the day, it will defrost slowly overnight, allowing you to take sips of cold water as you need them.
  23. Use a cold damp flannel to cool yourself from top to toe just before you get into bed.
  24. Think about moving to a cooler room to sleep – or sleeping separately.
  25. Drink lots. And lots.

Good luck everyone…

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5 Comments Add yours

  1. oldhowie says:

    Good advice sis … but on hottest day we have no water aahhhh


    1. OMG, really?? Come on over!! I have water, and ice, and a really cool garage!! Serious offer – I’m at work today but we can sort something out. xx


  2. anglosvizzera says:

    Great advice! I always find that seemingly paradoxically it is actually more comfortable to sleep in a thin cotton nightdress than nothing, and under a sheet rather than not. Not sure why that is…my husband declined my offer of a nightie, choosing a T-shirt and boxers instead 😉

    When I lived in Italy, we always closed the wooden shutters and windows on the sunny side – kept amazingly cool inside. Here, people don’t seem to understand the logic, and open all the windows to let in air that’s even hotter than inside the house and wonder why they are baking inside.

    One thing we’ve found can be helpful is to open the loft hatch at night which allows any hot air trapped in the house to escape upwards, creates a bit of a draught…


    1. You’re right!! I’d forgotten about loft hatches (I don’t have a loft!!)


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