If, like us, you are in the midst of a mini-heatwave (known elsewhere as 'summer'), the relentless sunshine may have you running for the nearest cold water spot for a swim. But cooling down during the day is one thing. It's a whole other story at night. Do you find yourself tossing and turning in the heat, unable to sleep, feeling sticky and sweaty and generally rather cranky? If you want to sleep well in comfort and wake up feeling refreshed, here are 14 ways to keep cool at night in summertime. They are simple, don't require great expense and are much more environmentally friendly than running air conditioning all night long.
1.Sleep near or on the floor
Warm air rises, so sling a hammock in your room if you can (this allows air to circulate fully around your body) or simply move your mattress down onto the floor.
2. Wear loose, linen nightclothes
Some people feel more comfortable sleeping naked when it's very hot, but if that's not your thing, choose loose pyjamas or nightdresses, preferably made from natural fibres like linen. This will actually wick sweat away from your body, keeping you drier and cooler.
3. Make a cold compress
Fill a sock with rice and leave in the freezer for 60-90 minutes, then apply wherever you need it.
4. Sleep in linen bedlinen
Not only does linen wick moisture away from your skin, it also regulates your body temperature. Whilst a new set of pure linen sheets and pillow cases might seem like a luxury, it is actually a really sound investment as it will also keep you cosy in winter, so no need for seasonal bedlinens. Our bedlinen is prewashed for super softness and will last you for many summers and changing seasons.
5. Drink water
You will sweat more during the summer, and this includes at night. To avoid dehydrating, drink a small glass of iced water before bed and keep it on your nightstand in case you wake up feeling parched. Drink more first thing in the morning to replenish your fluid levels.
6. Take a cold shower
Lower your blood temperature by having a cool shower before bed, paying particular attention to your feet - keeping them cool can help keep your overall body temperature down too.
7. Freeze bedding
This might sound nuts but it works! Place your pillow and a top sheet in sealed plastic bags inside the freezer. When it's bedtime, take them out and lie on your very own chiller bed.
8. Ice pulse points
Ice packs placed on pulse points (wrists, backs of knees, temples) can reduce your body temperature, so tuck some ice cubes into a cloth and hold them, or an ice pack, over these areas just before you doze off.
Make a spritz from iced water and fresh mint leaves, and keep beside your bed. If you wake up during the night, or have trouble dropping off, give yourself a light, cool misting.
10. Ice in front of a fan
If you have an electric fan, place an iced bottle of water or bowl of ice in front of it. The fan will blow the cold air round the room, helping you stay comfortable.
11. Turn off lights and gadgets
It may seem minimal, but the heat generated by lightbulbs and other electrical gadgets can make a room more stuffy and unbearable. Turn everything off to minimise extra heat.
12. Cold (hot) water bottle
Fill a hot water bottle with cold water (you can even put it in the freezer for a bit, but not for too long as it will create condensation) then put it by your feet in bed.
13. Open bedroom doors
Keep air flowing by opening your bedroom door (if appropriate). This will also create a through-draught if your window is also open, and keep air moving around the house.
14. Stay calm
It can be incredibly frustrating not being able to sleep, but getting angry and annoyed will just raise your body temperature and make things worse. Practice yogic breathing or mindfulness techniques to still your mind and distract it from the feelings of discomfort.
Hopefully these tips will help you stay cool at night until the heat passes and our thoughts turn to cozying up for the autumn. Wishing you sweet dreams and comfortable sleep!