7 Cool Tips to Beat A Heatwave

With heatwaves becoming more frequent in the UK and with temperatures expected to rise to as high as a sweltering 40°C (104°F) in places, it can be a stressful and uncomfortable time, especially if like many homes you do not have air conditioning. To help you try and beat the heat, we’ve compiled a handy list of tips and tricks that you can apply throughout the day.


  • Hydrate

Most important first, you need to stay hydrated! It seems self-explanatory that you should drink water when it’s hot, but it’s also vitally important to increase your water intake even before the temperature starts to climb.  

SIX TO EIGHT glasses of water is the recommended daily amount in normal conditions, and it’s a good idea to drink as much water as possible, especially before a heatwave. When things heat up your body will be working hard to try and keep you cool, so the more prepared your body is the better.

The key to staying hydrated is to start early. A good trick is to go to bed with a glass of water ready for you in the morning, then drinking it before doing anything else when you wake up. Not only will it get you started early, but by creating a routine, those who struggle to get going in the morning may feel more energized and ready for the day.

For more information and insight, we've added a helpful article about the importance of staying hydrated here.


  • Freeze Your Sheets

Ditching your duvet is a no brainer, but a less common tip is to throw your bed sheets and pillowcases in the freezer; this way when you go to bed in the evening, you’ll have nice, chilled sheets to get into, it’s as simple as that!


  • Taking A Plunge

A refreshing shower can sometimes be the perfect remedy for a hot sticky day, but don’t be too tempted to crank down the temperature dial too quickly. A good starting point is around 15-20°C, about the normal temperature as the English Channel at this time of year for the trivia folk out there. By having a lower temperature without it being an outright shock, you can be comfortable from the start and adjust temperature to preference as you go.

You may also feel the urge to take a dip in the local lake or river if you are feeling adventurous. If you choose to do so please act responsibly and follow the advice or guidance from local authorities and information centres.

Jonathan Cowie has a quick reference guide for swimmers that explains the kind of environment and precautions considered for each temperature. More can be found here.

  • Linens

The materials you wear can make a big impact on your comfort, and just like you wouldn’t wear sandals to the Arctic Circle, you shouldn’t wear jeans in a heatwave! If you’re in the market for some new summer clothes, look for lightweight and breathable fabrics to wear on hot days.

Linen clothing is perfect for staying cool because it is highly breathable even in slightly heavier weights, meaning you can feel a cool breeze and relax while still wearing full business attire if you must. If unsure about the suitability of a product in the shop, look for the materials list on the label and hold up the garment to a light, this way you can clearly see the open weave and determine if it is fit for purpose.

As alluded to earlier, linen clothes can come in a wide array of fits, styles and levels of formality. An advisable starting point is to get a pair of dark trousers and a couple of long-sleeve shirts, this way you can dress up, or down, with your existing wardrobe without having to invest in a whole new look.


  • Keep Blinds & Curtains Closed

Maybe seeming counter-intuitive, it’s better to keep those curtains closed rather than opening them up and letting the sun in. Although this may restrict a breeze the key is to stop your house turning into a greenhouse, as British homes are designed to retain heat rather than dissipate it.

This is a perfect time to invest in blackout blinds or curtains because they are such an effective way of blocking the sun out, but if a particular side of your home sees a lot of the sun, it may even be worth investing in shutters, allowing good airflow with minimal greenhouse effect.


  • Stay In The Shade

Spending time outside and topping up your tan can definitely be a relaxing experience, but it is important to remember that sunburn and heatstroke are both far from relaxing and a real risk even on overcast days.

When enjoying the sun wear appropriate protective clothing and suitable skincare products, but also ensure that you are nearby a source of shade to avoid over-exposure. When out in your garden on a sunny day, a parasol offers a cool shady spot in a compact and flexible way. Click here To explore our range of parasols so that you can stay safe (and cool) in your garden.


  • Sleep Downstairs

Heat rises. A simple fact that unfortunately means you may be more comfortable on the sofa than in bed this summer. As previously discussed most British homes are built to retain heat, and usually that heat will accumulate on the upper levels, in some cases causing a several degree difference just between your ground level and upper floor.

Even if you can manage to dissipate some of the heat in the evening, it’s advisable on the hottest days to avoid heading upstairs and keep to the cooler rooms of your home instead.  


Hopefully with some of these tips you will be able to enjoy the sun and maybe even sleep a little easier this summer. If you have any advice of your own you’d like to share, reach out to us on social media and you may even feature in our next post!

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