Summer is here.
That's great news for beach-goers, outdoor fanatics and students who love their vacation. But it also means the perpetual battle with heat waves and warm, sticky nights. For people who don't have air conditioners or live in brutally hot climates, with summer can come the dread of trying to stay comfortable.
Thankfully, humans are innovators, and we've continued to find ways to get through the summer without spending ridiculous amounts of money on utilities or trips to the water park (though we always recommend a trip to the water park).
1. Make sure your ceiling fan is rotating counterclockwise.
In the summertime, you want your fans running counterclockwise to pull hot air up and create a breeze going down. In the winter, you can run them clockwise so they distribute heat throughout the room. Most ceiling fans have a simple switch to toggle through the settings. This is also a big money saver.
2. Bust out the cotton.
Cotton clothes and sheets are the most breathable and wick away perspiration. Try to find light colored clothes and light colored sheets made up of as much cotton as possible. Satin and polyester tend to retain heat.
3. Make your own air conditioner.
If you're on a tight budget, you can actually make your own air conditioner. All you need is a small fan, a styrofoam cooler, some PVC pipe (or a substitute) and ice! Cut two holes in the top of the cooler. In one hole, run your pipe out the top. In the other, face a fan downwards into the cooler. Now you're blowing ice into the room!
4. Copy the Egyptians.
5. Know your sweet spots.
Certain parts of the body release and contain the most heat, typically in places where you have a pulse. Run ice cubes or put a compress over your neck, ankles, groin, wrists and elbows to cool off.
6. Ditch the mattress and get low.
You know that feeling when you cuddle under the sheets in the winter and the bed warms up? Well, that happens all the time, and it's because mattresses are good at retaining heat. When the summer rolls around, ditch the mattress for a yoga mat or a hammock. Both breathe better, and you can put the yoga mat on the floor to get lower than the hot air (which rises).
7. Cook outside or don't cook at all.
Stoves and ovens can really heat up the house, so do your best to avoid using them. Cook using a microwave, an outdoor grill or just go for cold meals like salads and sandwiches. Or just make a lava grill.
8. Fix your hair!
The ladies can put their hair into braids, ponytails or get a nice cut. The fellas would be wise to go full buzz cut or just shave your head. Your head retains a lot of heat and the less natural covering you have, the cooler you'll be.