Hydrate to Keep Your Cool

Proper hydration is key to comfort when the temperatures soar, says LifeHacker. Water is like a coolant that keeps the body cool — and if you’re sweating it out, it must be replaced. Drink plenty of water (preferably uncarbonated water, which has proven more effective for hydration). Don’t rule out other beverages when you’re trying to keep cool, though; even coffee and beer (in moderation) can aid in hydration. Coffee and other caffeinated beverages tend to increase the body’s temperature, however, temporarily thwarting hydration’s cooling effect, while excessive alcohol intake depletes the body of fluids and nutrients.

Use Ventilation to Beat the Summer Heat

Last week’s heat wave may have only been a harbinger of what’s to come in August. To beat the heat, proper ventilation is your best strategy, Real Simple says. If you don’t have air conditioning in your home, place fans in the windows facing outward to draw hot air out of the house. Fans can also add to your air-conditioned comfort by circulating the drier, cooler air by adding a gentle breeze inside the home. And you can make your own air conditioner by placing a bowl of ice in front of a fan — and placing yourself in front of that.

Make a Splash to Beat the Heat

Water is generally the answer to keeping cool in the summertime — the more, the better, whether you’re drinking it or soaking in it. When it’s hot out, there’s nothing like a splash in in the pool, lake or ocean to really cool off, the Barefoot Nomad says. If all else fails, you can pick up a cheap kiddie pool to soak your feet, or take a run through the sprinkler. Evaporation helps you keep cool, too, so find a spray bottle to mist yourself with when the temps become unbearable. Add botanicals such as lavender or cucumber slices and keep it cold in the fridge — instead of sweaty, you’ll feel like you’ve gone to the spa!

Dressing for the Hottest Weather

Dressing for the (hot) weather? Start with loose-fitting, lightweight and light-colored clothing. Clothing and hats block the sun’s damaging UV rays by providing your body with its own portable patch of shade, and light colors absorb less sunlight. Keep garments loose to allow airflow to cool the skin, NPR says; use sunscreen to protect exposed areas, but don’t forget that it can actually make you feel hotter by preventing sweat. If your closet is short on sheers, try the local thrift store for a few lightly used summer garments; shopping thrifts supplied by ClothingDonations.org helps veterans!