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5 strange ways to stay cool in summer

No A/C? You're probably already hitting the mall and pool as often as possible. Here are five somewhat strange strategies to try next.

By MSN Money Partner Jun 23, 2014 12:15PM

This post comes from Maryalene LaPonsie at partner site Money Talks News.


Money Talks News on MSN MoneyWith the exception of one glorious summer of apartment dwelling, I've never lived anyplace with central air. In fact, it wasn't even until after I was married that I had a window air-conditioning unit.


Blowing money out the window © Brian Hagiwara/Brand X/CorbisSo, my childhood summers were spent sweltering in our home where the downstairs windows didn't open and my second-story bedroom was cooled by one small fan. I remember sneaking down to the freezer for ice cubes to run across my forehead at night in the hopes I would cool off enough to fall asleep.


As those of you without air conditioning know, the heat can make you resort to all sorts of tactics to keep cool. If you're feeling desperate, you could try one of these rather strange methods to find relief from the heat.


1. Take an icy foot bath

The fastest way to start shivering in 90-degree heat is to dip your toes into freezing cold water. Fill a bowl with cool water and dip your little piggies right in. Add some ice if you're brave, but don't overdo it. Quickly immersing your feet in ice cold water can be painful -- although I suppose it would take your mind off the heat.


While you're at it, try running cold water over your wrists and placing an ice pack around your neck or on your forehead. Cooling down your pulse points can help your whole body feel more comfortable.


2. Wear some frozen clothes

To turn down the heat a notch and look fabulous at the same time, you could buy this stunning lime green quilted vest from Amazon. Soak that bad boy in cold water for a few minutes and, in theory, you should be feeling cool and comfortable for hours.


Actually, you can buy a whole range of clothing products that claim to cool you off in the heat of the day. There are cooling caps, cooling sleeves and cooling bandanas (don't forget your dog). However, my favorite by far is the freeze ice vest that not only lets you wear ice packs on your body but also gives the illusion of six-pack abs. I'm so putting that on my birthday wish list.


3. Freeze your sheets

You don't need specialized sheets to stay cool at night. Simply take the ones you have and throw them in the freezer a couple hours before bedtime. Then, pull them out and enjoy the cool. Just fall asleep quickly, because on an 80-degree night it won't take long for them to lose their chill.


Of course, it might be a bit inconvenient to make your bed each night, so maybe try this strategy with only your pillowcase and a top sheet.


4. Go underground

Head underground to the basement on those hot, hot days. Our basement is so chilly, we sometimes even use blankets down there in the summer.


However, not everyone has a finished basement. If you find yourself without one, as was the case in my last house, I suggest cleaning out a corner and setting up a chair or maybe a desk. Personally, I would rather smell musty and look at the furnace than melt into the floor upstairs.


If your house is built on a slab, well, I'm sorry. You're plain out of luck.


5. Live underground

Are you ready to get extreme? Then consider buying or building your next home underground. Sure, you might not get too much sunlight, but that's a small trade-off in order to have your very own hobbit house.


Often called earth homes, underground living will give you the same cool air of the basement without making you feel banished from your main living quarters. If you're ready to get drastic, you can look here for inspiration, and this site has some practical advice and details.


What about you? Are you going to feel like someone needs to scrape you off the floor with a spatula come August, or are you going to be staying cool? And for those of you with central air, there's no need to rub it in.


More from Money Talks News

34Comments
Jun 23, 2014 4:52PM
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Take a cold shower before going to bed at night...Brrrrrrrrrr.....but, it sure cools you off quickly and use your ceiling fans or any other fans you might have and raise those windows too.
Jun 29, 2014 10:44AM
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stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water and wear light colored,loose fitting clothing.dark colors absorb the sun's rays.light colors reflect them.and try to stay in air conditioned rooms,especially when the National Weather service issues excessive heat warnings for your area.avoid strenuous activities.if you exercise,do it lightly instead of over exerting yourself.
 
Jun 29, 2014 11:04AM
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Don't worry, poor peopole of Ameica.  Know that while you work, pay taxes and sweat, the dignitaries of most other countries are relaxing under the best air conditioning systems in the world.  All compliments of our CONgress.  We need to get hot enought to revolt!!!!!!!!!!!  To march on Washington and to take the "dignitaries" there to the woodshed!!!
Jun 28, 2014 4:03AM
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When I was little, my mom and I would take our sheets and pillows and stretch out on the kitchen floor, where we would catch the cool breezes coming through the back second-floor windows. This was in the city in the 1950s, when air conditioning was nearly science fiction. :-)
Jun 29, 2014 1:56PM
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Use to sleep outdoors back in the 60s. all the neighbor kids. Today its too dangerous anymore.
Jun 29, 2014 10:47AM
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As a kid at night slept out on the porch. We were lucky, it was screened in. Now, I am spoiled. I have A/C in my apt.  When I go to work, a cold wet paper towel around my neck. Other than that, a little bitching. Doesn't cool me off but it is satisfying some how. 
Jun 23, 2014 4:50PM
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Underground and semi-underground construction can offer a lot of benefits in protection from severe weather and lowered HVAC costs, but it's not for everyone. Wouldn't mind trying it at some point.
Jun 29, 2014 11:21PM
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We grew up poor and spent our childhood in hot and humid apartments. At night, after the sun went down, we all showered and then headed to the living room where we had one fan blowing air in from one window, another blowing air out of another, and yet one more on the other side of the room creating a nice cross breeze. Our Mom would then hang heavy blankets in the doorways leading towards the living room to trap the cool air. It was a process, but it was effective. Mom would fall asleep on the sofa and me and my brothers and sister would all fall asleep on a mattress that our Mother laid out on the floor. As hard as those days were, I often miss them. Amazed at how our Mother made things happen with so little. Even more amazed at how loud my little sister could snore..........
Jun 23, 2014 3:39PM
Jun 29, 2014 11:30AM
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Walk around naked. I do. Get up early and walk to the nearest golf course and stand under their sprinklers and you can wash at the same time. If you don't live near a golf course move to a better neighborhood. Drink much water and swim in water stay in the shade and walk around naked. Oh I said that already.   
Jun 29, 2014 8:30PM
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Quite possible the stupidest article ever written, and by MSN standards that's a big statement!

 

Frozen clothing? Frozen sheets??

 

Ummmmmmm AC is the only way.

Jun 29, 2014 5:43PM
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We have an old farm house and this trick works wonders! If you have an upstairs, close all of your windows downstairs and place a fan facing outside in a window closest to your stairway. Turn it on high and the air from your basement will come through your cold air registers and also push the hot air outside. It's nearly as good as air conditioning. 

Jun 29, 2014 6:48PM
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Beinghonest is turning into BEING ANNOYING!!
Jun 29, 2014 1:03PM
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Reusable ice pack on your chest, cools the heart and that's what pumps the blood to the rest of the body.
Jun 29, 2014 6:25PM
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Sleep nude.  the breeze feels wonderful on your skin.  You don't have to have the AC as high.  And, when you are in the house, why wear anything?  Again, the breeze on your skin is great.  I think if you try it, you will like it.

Jun 30, 2014 12:38AM
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Not long ago, I was told that "having running hot water is a luxury" and that "we should be lucky to have it".  This article reminds me of that mentality.  Gotta love setting the bar high for us.  Now, according to this article, we can live underground.  Great idea.  We'll be mole people.  Cavemen.  Progressive. 
Jul 1, 2014 5:43PM
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Everyone that thinks that showing skin keeps you cool is wrong.  Think about it.  The scorching sun directly hits every inch of your exposed skin.  However, if you had your skin covered it would hit the clothing instead.  This keeps you cooler and appropriate.
Jun 30, 2014 1:27AM
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Just move to Wisconsin where you have only 2 seasons: Winter and July. And even in July there, heat isn't an issue.
Jun 29, 2014 11:29PM
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TRY THIS AND IT DOES WORK SOUNDS ODD BUT. TAKE A LONG SHOELACE AND TIE IT IN A CIRCLE. THEN TAKE  A MEDIUM PAPER CUP. FILL THE CUP WITH WATER AND PUT ONE END OF THE TIED SHOELACE (CIRCLE) INTO THE CUP .WITH THE WATER PUT IT IN THE FREEZER. ONCE FROZEN JUST HANG IT ON YOUR CHEST AND IT WILL COOL YOUR BODY DOWN WITH THE EVAPORATION AND YOUR BODY CORE GETTING COOLED DOWN ALSO. KIDS LIKE IT AND SO WILL YOUR BODY    BACKWOODS AIR CONDITIONER
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