By the time I finished writing these ideas, I kid you not, I had semantic satiation of the word “cool”. That just goes to show just how great these ideas and life hacks are for uh, cooling you down.
Growing up in Sydney, I’ve experienced my fair share of hot summers, and learned from a young age how to survive them, even before we had air-conditioning!
My childhood is full to the brim of memories involving me waking up on the floor after a particularly hot night, napping beneath a ceiling fan covered in damp towels, or heading to the local swimming pool with friends!
Summer here in the UK is a lot milder than that we experience back in Australia, but that doesn’t mean we don’t feel the need to hide away and keep ourselves cool – we’re all familiar with the Glaswegian Taps Aff, afterall!
As part of my Surviving Summer series, I thought that a long list of ways to help fight the summer heat would be essential – not only will it help you survive summer, but will give you some brilliant ideas on not only keeping yourself cool, but your whole home.
So, without further ado, here’s how to keep cool this summer:
- Air-conditioning : Not many homes in the UK have air-conditioning, but it’s a great investment as reverse cycle air-conditioners cool during summer, and heat during winter.
- Aloe vera : Aloe Vera helps reduce body heat, so moisturising with products containing
- Avoid Caffeine : Caffeine increases your metabolism, which increases your core body temperature. This one is a no brainer!
- Avoid the booze : We’re all familiar with the Bourbon blanket, and how we all feel warmer after a drink or two, so best to leave the beer in the fridge. Also, alcohol dehydrates the body which is a big no-no in summer.
- Avoid the oven : Ovens take time to heat up and cool down, and all that hot air is going to increase the temperature in your home. Try using a slow cooker, or opting for grilled or barbecued foods instead!
- Change your fans setting : Did you know, setting your fan to rotate counter-clockwise creates a wind-chill breeze effect that will help cool you down? No? Well, now you do!
- Chrysanthemum tea : Chrysanthemum tea is great for cooling your body, reducing your core temperature. It’s also fun to watch as the tea turns from yellow to blue as it cools down!
- Close the blinds and curtains : Blocking the sunlight coming in through your windows, will also reduce the heat radiating through them.
- Cold water bottle (ice pack) : Instead of using a hot water bottle to warm your bed in winter, use an ice pack to reduce the temperature of your bed in summer.
- DIY Ice Lollies : Use fresh juice and fruit to make your own ice lollies. You can buy ice lolly moulds from Amazon.
- Eat less or lighter : The more you eat, the more your metabolism has to work to burn it off, and the warmer your body will get. Opt instead for smaller meals more often, and switching soups for salads.
- Exercise at night : If you get your fitness by walking, running or jogging, do it first thing in the morning before the sun has had a chance to warm the air and ground.
- Eye masks : To help cool you down as you sleep, wear under-eye masks. The moisture in these masks will react with the airflow in your room and help cool you down – all whilst ensuring you wake up looking refreshed!
- Flip your pillow : We all know this trick when it’s hot – flipping your pillow offers momentary relief from the heat as your face gets smushed up against that sweet, cold side.
- Freeze your sheets : Pop your sheets in a plastic bag, and put them in the freezer for an hour before bed for a great, cool nights sleep.
- Frozen fruit : A cheap and easy way to cool kids down in Australian schools is frozen orange quarters. At home, you can freeze any fruit (oranges and pineapple work best) to nibble on to help you cool down.
- Get cultured : Art Galleries and Museums always have their air-conditioning on in order to preserve their displays. You’ll be out of the sun, in cool fresh air, and surrounded by lots of amazing art or interesting items.
- Go Commando : Hot days mean warm nights, so skip the pyjamas and go commando.
- Head to the cinema : Watch a movie and be entertained whilst you sit in the dark enjoying the air-conditioning, courtesy of the cinema!
- Head to the shops : Any large shopping complex will be blasting out the cold air during summer to keep customers cool and happy. Wander around the shops, or if there’s comfy seats nearby, hang back and relax a little.
- Kiddie Pool : Don’t have a large yard or pool? Kiddie pools are a great options for small spaces, and are great to relax in at the end of the day.
- Lie on the floor : Hot air rises, so the coolest place in your home is likely the floor, especially if you have tiles! Grab a comfy pillow and a book, and enjoy the coolness the floor provides.
- Lukewarm showers : Having an ice-cold showering will actually cause you body to compensate and raise your core temperature. Instead, opt for a lukewarm or cool shower.
- Make a Slip & Slide : If you have a yard, or live near a park, a slip & slide is a cheap and easy way to cool down. Use an old tarp, add some dish soap, and spray with a hose for instead fun!
- Minty fresh : We all know mint is cool and refreshing, so use a mint body wash or drink peppermint tea to remain cool, calm, and collected!
- Open your windows : Unless you want your home to become oppressive, open your windows to let the trapped, hot air escape, and let the cooler evening air in.
- Reduce your TOG : A lot of people need to sleep covered, so replace that 10 tog duvet, with a lighter 4 tog. Alternatively, use light blankets with an open weave to promote airflow around your body as you sleep.
- Run cold water over your wrists : Running cool water over your wrists helps in reducing your overall body temperature. It also feels incredibly relaxing!
- Spray bottle : Spritz yourself with a spray bottle whenever you start to overheat.
- Stay hydrated : Keep half-filled bottles of water in the freezer. Once frozen, you can top up with tap water for an instantly cold and refreshing drink.
- Take a bath : Fill your bathtub with essential oils and lukewarm water, and relax with a book to keep yourself cool and refreshed.
- Use a fan : an electric pan, whether a ceiling fan or pedestal fan, will help the airflow in a room as well as blowing sweet, cool air over you. They may be noisy, but it’s better than being hot!
- Use a wet cloth : Soak a cloth or facetowl in water, then wring out before placing over exposed skin. As air passes over the cloth from the window or fan, it’ll help cool you down.
- Water Park or Beach : This one goes without saying – pop on your togs and head to the closest water park or beach! It might be hot out, but a quick dip will have you loving it in no time. Just don’t forget the SPF!
- Wear cotton and linen : Cotton and linen clothing in light colours can help keep you cool during hot weather. Unlike synthetics, cotton doesn’t trap the heat, and lighter colours reflect the suns radiation.
How are you planning to keep cool this summer? Let me know your ideas in the comments!
Don’t forget there’s more Surviving Summer series! Just click on the image below.