How to Stay Cool on a Hot Day

Growing up in Texas, we learn pretty quickly what activities you can do to stay cool in the hot summer months.

We often have temperatures over 100 degrees Fahrenheit for 50 and 60 days in a row!

What can you do to stay cool that won't cost you a fortune?

Here are a few tips.

Hang out in the mall
Hang out in the mall

Make Use of Free Air Conditioning

One of the best ways to stay cool is to utilize someone else's air conditioning. While you're away from your home, you don't have to have the thermostat set so low.

It's a great time to:

  • Window shop in the mall or read a book in the food court
  • Hang out in a bookstore
  • Visit a large antique mall
  • Go to the library
  • Restaurants with free wi-fi are a great place to hang out with your laptop
  • Go visit friends and family, even for an hour or two
  • Go to any free museums or local attractions.

Soak them with a watergun!
Soak them with a watergun!
Water balloons
Water balloons

Outdoor Fun

If you're more interested in being outdoors, at least look for some shade and wear a good sunblock.

Some ideas for keeping cool outdoors are:

  • Go to the lake, or any free access body of water
  • Go to a well-shaded park
  • Some towns offer free water activities. We have a couple of playgrounds around town that have water areas for kids to play in
  • Get out the watersprinkler and create your own backyard fun. If you feel even more adventurous you can roll out some plastic and make a slip-n-slide.
  • Have a watergun fight. Some of the waterguns today truly are supersoakers!
  • Have a waterballoon fight. Make sure someone picks up the pieces of balloon.
  • Kiddie wading pools are inexpensive. Buy one if for no other reason than to put your feet in it.
  • Inflatable pools are more affordable than they used to be. If you can afford one, they can be an alternative to paying admission to a local pool.
  • Watch for free outdoor activities like carnivals, picnics, family reunions, etc.
  • Personal misters are a fun way to keep cool. Some are inexpensive spraybottles with a battery-operated fan. Fancier options are available. If you can afford them, installing a mist system around the perimeter of a patio is a great way to reduce the temperature in that area by 20 degrees.
  • When sitting outdoors, sit on something that allows the air to freely move all around you. Chairs with webbing, slats, or holes are perfect.
  • Woven hammocks are a great way to allow the breeze to cool you from all sides.

Additional Tips to Stay Cool

  • Cooling your wrists, neck, and other pulse points with cool water will help cool off your body.
  • Take a cool bath and do not dry off. Let the breeze dry you naturally
  • Drink plenty of water even if you're not sweating or thirsty. If you're sweating, be sure to replace the electrolytes by drinking Gatorade or other similar drinks.
  • Dress lightly. Wear loose-fitting cotton, silk or linen fabrics in light colors if possible.
  • Go without a hat or shoes if you're able to since the body releases a lot of heat through the scalp and soles. If you are wanting to wear a hat for the shade, make sure it's one that allows your head to "breathe".
  • Turn off as many heat-producing appliances as you can. Switch to fluorescent bulbs in all your lamps and room lights.
  • Try to cook outdoors to avoid heating up the house unnessarily.
  • When it's cooler outside open windows and use fans to circulate the air. Box fans are great for this Keep shades and curtains closed when the sun is on that side of the house.

  • Use mint, menthol or rubbing alcohol based products in a lotion for applying to your skin. Peppermint and spearmint provide a cooling effect to the skin

  • Put a bowl of ice in front of a fan so that the breeze blowing across the ice will be cooler

  • Stock your freezer with frozen fruit, Popsicles, frozen juice bars, and ice.

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Comments 33 comments

jayb23 profile image

jayb23 7 years ago from India

Those are very nice and informative tips. Being from mumbai I know what problems heat and humidity can pose. Cheers

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thank goodness we don't suffer from too much humidity where I'm from in Texas.  It's mostly just heat.  I hate humidity.  I get that around Houston or Galveston.  You feel clammy and sticky....yuk.

Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Jayb!

ZWorkz profile image

ZWorkz 7 years ago from Florida

This topic hits very close to home as I have been working outside in the hot humid hell that is Florida summertime lately. What works best for me if I need to cool down quick is dipping my head in the nearest body of water I can find. It really seems to be effective at cooling the rest of your body down without taking a full dip. Underarmor works moderately well if theres a breeze but the little neck wraps that you soak in water are a better bet. Great topic!

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Great suggestions Zworkz! Thanks for adding these comments!

goldentoad profile image

goldentoad 7 years ago from Free and running....

And move as little as possible.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

LOL...I find flailing about stirs up more breeze.....LOL

Mighty Mom profile image

Mighty Mom 7 years ago from Where Left is Right, CA

Totally great ideas, KCC. I especially like cooling off using someone else's air conditioning. Even going grocery shopping is a good idea -- hang in the produce or frozen food aisle!

Popsicles are great, too.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

We've done some of almost all of these in the last two days. Our A/C wasn't blowing properly. Found out the A-coil is clogged and the pan underneath was rusty. We're having it repaired/replaced. It may be a few days yet. It's hawt as heck right now too. My car thermometer read 105 earlier when we came back from Wal-mart with another waterhose, sprinkler, personal mister fan, and more ice cream.

TamCor profile image

TamCor 7 years ago from Ohio

Great ideas for staying cool! We're in Ohio, where it can get pretty hot and humid, too, so we've done several of the things you suggest, and will have to try some of the others, also!

My favorite way to cool down is to freeze Iced tea in ice cube trays--after they're frozen, let them sit for a couple of minutes, then they are really good to munch on! Not hard like ice cubes(unless you don't use sugar), so they won't break your teeth crunching on them, lol...

Thanks again for the great suggestions! :)

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Glad you enjoyed them TamCor!  I drink tea without sugar because that's what my mom and all her family did.  My ex-husband and his family drank it sweetened.  So, once my kids saw there was a choice, of course they chose sweetened.  So, that leaves me being the only one who drinks it plain. 

We've just been sitting outside with the mister sprinkler blowing onto us from the bit of hot breeze.  It was nice!

TamCor profile image

TamCor 7 years ago from Ohio

KCC--It's funny, but I prefer unsweetened tea to drink, but, for the ice cubes, I add sugar...weird, huh?lol

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Huh....interesting, TamCor....I may have to try that. Years ago.....probably close to 20 years ago now, I threw all of my ice trays out in protest. I was angry with my first husband for always leaving them empty. He never would refill them. I threw them out and told him he could buy ice. We bought bags for years after that. Then we built our new house and bought a refrigerator with ice and water in the door. Then, the ice maker started slothing off pieces of the lining of the ice trays into our ice so we unhooked it and went back to buying bags of ice. We've gotten so used to buying bags of ice, I don't even think about ice trays.

TamCor profile image

TamCor 7 years ago from Ohio

lol--That's a great story! And makes a lot of sense, especially since your hubby had a refilling problem, lol...

We go through a LOT of ice, so I keep six trays filled all of the time--2 for my "tea cubes", as my grandson calls them(he's addicted to them, too!), and four for regular ice. I can't imagine not having them, but gee, buying ice would be SO much simpler--gotta think about that, haha!

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

It's only just over a $1 for 8 lbs. It's worth it to me! No dumping and refilling. We just buy it went we're out doing other stuff. We dump it right into the bucket portion that the ice maker used to dump into, so I still get the ice straight out of the door as if the ice-maker made it. :)

RAJIV WRITES profile image

RAJIV WRITES 7 years ago

Take a bath (dont dry urself with water) and sit under a fan (not AC) or in a windy area to let the water evaporate... and soon you will be freezed...

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

That does work well too ! Thanks, Rajiv!

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

My A/C is fixed, after one week without it! YEAH!! Popsicles, making icy drinks with crushed ice in the blender, getting wet in the water sprinkler and drying naturally were life-savers this week...and it's been over 100 here for the last few days!

Camping Dan profile image

Camping Dan 7 years ago

Drinking plenty of water is a big key. Too many people do not take in enough now since they drink soda and stuff more.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thanks Camping Dan. You're right, many assume that if they're drinking sodas they are getting enough liquid and that just isn't necessarily true. You need water.

GiftedLifted 7 years ago

Wow! U R sooooo interesting. I really must return (after breakfast) and read more. This is awesome stuff. I am excited about my decision to do the 30 hubs in 30 days. That truly will get me going. U have so many readers, as well. U go Ms. KCC Big Country. Peace.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 7 years ago from Central Texas Author

Thank you so much GiftedLifted! I'm glad to hear that you have decided to join the 30 day challenge! It's a great way to jumpstart things here.

Lisaaa 6 years ago

Oh Lord its been a Very hot few days in Ireland !!

I like to lie in a cold bath while sucking on ice cubes!

Also try riding your bike(bring WATER!!)

My God Im roasting!!

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 6 years ago from Central Texas Author

Sorry to hear it's unbearably hot in Ireland, Lisaaa! Sounds like you have found a few ways to cope. Hope my list helps you come up with some more!

carelady 6 years ago

Great article by the way. I like wearing neck coolers during the hot days. I like soaking the neck cooler in ice cold water.

Ron 6 years ago

You can get cheap ice without ice trays if you use milk jugs with the top cut out. A few pecks with an ice pick and presto, just like the stuff you buy at the store.

My mom used to use our ice trays to make frozen fruit juice cubes.

Annoymois 6 years ago

love it

mkv 5 years ago

thanks for the tips i can use these for my softball practice later

Emma lee 5 years ago

pretty good,i'll be doing some of these also,i know what you mean .it tends to be humid here in the spring-summer a lot and it KILLS me.

JmaBSP profile image

JmaBSP 5 years ago from Vernon Hills, IL

Great article! Nice title as well! You have given me a lot of ways to stay cool, especially now that summer is coming.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 5 years ago from Central Texas Author

Awesome, JmaBSP! We've had 9 days of over 100 degrees so far this summer and I noticed that my computer is showing me a possible 106 degrees over the next few days here in central Texas. I may be having to refer back to my own list!

I bought a chair mat yesterday during my lunch hour and left it rolled up in my car. Four hours later it had taken on a completely different shape. It was very pliable and I begin to try to shape it as my car cooled down. Unfortunately, he "hardened" back into a shape with creases. I need to lay it out in the sun flat today. LOL

JmaBSP profile image

JmaBSP 5 years ago from Vernon Hills, IL

Oh wow you guys already have had 100 degree weather? Here in Illinois, I believe the highest we have gone is around 80. I would feel like mush if it was constantly 100 degrees here.

KCC Big Country profile image

KCC Big Country 5 years ago from Central Texas Author

I don't think it even gets down to 80 at night here! LOL My computer shows it's 102 right now. It shows the low to be 77. :)

renee 4 years ago

I work At a fast food place and with not very many options to cool down and have to be constantly moving around and wear a hat and pants we also have no air conditioning on our back work area...... What should I do

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