With the East Coast rising to sauna-style temperatures, and the West breaking heat-wave records, many frugal families have been looking for new ways to beat the heat. Life in the sun is easy when there’s a fully functioning air conditioner waiting at home, but not everyone has the joy of instant cooling at an affordable price.
To help our readers without air conditioning cool down a bit, DeseretNews.com has compiled a list of 15 cheap ways to chill out:
Hang a damp towel in your window, preferably light-colored. Check the towel every so often, periodically wetting it again with cold water. The evaporating water will cool the incoming breeze. Complement this by running a ceiling fan counter-clockwise to keep the cool air circulating.
By pouring cold water, or applying a cool towel to your temple, ankles or wrists, you can cool your blood down, as well as your body temperature. “Pulse points,” as they’re called, are the areas of the body where blood vessels are closest to the skin.
Eat spicy foods. It may sound counter-intuitive, but eating foods with a little extra kick will cause you to sweat without actually raising your body temperature.
Freeze your pillowcase and sheets. Seal up your pillowcase and sheets in freezer bags and leave them in the freezer all day. When it’s time to go bed, you’ll have a nice cool bed awaiting you.
Freeze some water bottles and place them in front of a fan. As the ice in the water bottles begins to melt, the fan will blow cool, misty air.
Eating big delicious meals causes insulin to rise. By eating smaller portions more often, instead of infrequent and large portions, you will avoid that warm drowsy feeling after lunch.
Try Otter Pops in your pocket. They are a great way to keep your thighs cold and provide a handy snack for the summer.
Eat more salad. Do your best to eat foods that don’t necessitate the oven. Cool meals like sandwiches and salads will help keep down the unnecessary heat generated from the oven.
By performing the Sheetali Pranayama (a yoga breathing practice), you can decrease body temperature, if even by a little. To perform the Sheetali Pranayama, simply curl your tongue and breathe in through the mouth. Exhale slowly through the nose, and let the cool feeling wash over you.
Brew up some peppermint tea and put it into a spray bottle. Every time you get too hot, give it a spray. The menthol will tingle on your skin and keep you feeling cool and fresh.
Heat rises, so the more time you can spend in the basement or floor level of your house, the better.
By wearing loose-fitting light-colored clothes, you will attract less heat from the sun. Keeping a wet hat on hand isn't a terrible idea either.
Replace your candy habit with frozen grapes. They’re sweet like a Skittle but much healthier, and cheaper too. Apply the same theory to your bananas and strawberries, and you have a wide array of chilled summer treats.
Americans spend more than 100 hours a year commuting, and that means a lot of time in the car. While most cars these days have air conditioning, the first few minutes in the driver’s seat can be particularly brutal in the summer heat. Even if it’s out of your way, a shady parking spot can make all the difference.
The average American has dozens of appliances in the home that generate heat. Turn off the ones you can, such as a computer, and do your best to save energy on the ones you can’t, like the refrigerator. By keeping the refrigerator door closed, for example, it will take less energy to keep the fridge cool because less cold air is escaping.