Thursday, 17 July 2014

Feeling Hot? Top tips to keep cool, day and night.

Believe me I am not complaining. But blimey it's hot here right now! I have all the windows and doors open but there isn't much wind to breeze through them and cool me down as I sit here with a laptop breathing out some extra heat.

I love warm weather generally but here in Hertfordshire, UK right now it is humid which is not a good heat in my view. If I was at  my mum's in Cyprus with a hot tub and vine-covered taverna to relax in I wouldn't mind so much....

Anyway I thought in case there are more of you out there dreaming of snow and ice or hoping the inevitable storm comes soon to break the humidity I would post some top tips to keep cool - especially at night!

I have been in London quite a bit this week and found to survive the tube I needed a few extra bits in my back pack. These tips would work equally well for any journey or if you are planning a holiday abroad.

Firstly - water.  Sounds obvious but the key to not feeling ill or getting a heat/ sunstroke headache is often to keep hydrated. Invest in a good insulated bottle to have cool water on hand - nothing tastes worse to me than warm water!

Secondly - cool clothing. Well this sounds obvious but make sure your clothes are made from natural fibres like linen (which will crease like mad but keep you cooler) or cotton. Loose, light clothing is perfect and sometimes conversely covering up keeps you cooler than exposing skin. Think floaty Maxidress rather than teeny shorts.

Thirdly- wet wipes. Wether you favour value baby wipes or expensive makeup removing wipes or simply those "refreshing" wipes they are fantastic for making you feel a bit fresher. Chuch a spare deodorant in your bag too and turn a loo-stop into a mini "bed bath" break and emerge from the cubicle looking and feeling fresher!

At night I find it very hard to sleep if I'm feeling too warm. Now some of these tips are a bit odd but after seven pregnancies, many of them through some major heat waves, I have perfected the art of keeping cool - if I don't get my sleep I get nasty!

Fourth (ly?) gel bead scarf. These are strips of fabric filled with water retaining gel beads which when soaked in water feel cool against your skin. The fabric dries but the beads feel cold - I don't understand the science but love the sensation. You can tie them round your head under your summer hat too or can even buy hats with built in gel lining.


girl modelling gel filled menopause scarf
DD modelling my gel-bead filled scarf

I bought my scarf very cheaply off eBay when the menopause was really heating me up and found if your neck feels cool the rest of you does too! They come in a variety of patterns and colours and really work!

First tip - reverse hot water bottles. Cold water - even refrigerate the cold water bottle all day then place it in your bed about half an hour before bed time. Even better - camping freezer blocks on pillow and down the line of your body = cool sheets and cool body. In extreme weather I have been known to put one in a pillow case and rest my feet on it! Bendy wine coolers great for hot heads!

Second tip - water again but this time in spray form. Jump in to a cool shower and get yourself (or at least your feet and legs) wet, shake the worst of the water off then slightly damp go to bed.

You might even feel cold at first but hopefully will fall asleep before your core temp warms up again. Or fill a plant watering spray bottle or invest in one of those little fans with added water bottle and spray yourself cool whilst lying down. Especially refreshing on face and legs!

Third tip - fan. Ok so this sounds obvious but it can make all the difference. We finally decided on comfort over style (apologies if you think these ARE stylish!) and fitted a ceiling fan/light in our bedroom. Cheap as chips from that place where you choose products in a catalogue and they hand item over the counter and very effective. My husband fitted it himself and although he is quite "handy" it didn't look hugely complicated.

Although ours was cheap we find it isn't as noisy as a stand-up electric fan- only downside is that I often wake in the night and have to get up and pull the cord to switch it off.  I am currently working in a pulley system for my husband to create so I can turn it off without getting up!

More expensive models I believe come with a remote control - If you can afford it I would recommend you choose that option!

You can even buy air conditioning units for the home now but I quite like having the windows open so am happy with my ceiling fan.

So there you have it - my top tips for keeping cool in the humid weather. Devised through many pregnancies and hopefully of use to some of you out there desperate for a good night's sleep!




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