The sun’s working overtime and it’s getting real hot in here. Keep things cool in Singapore’s hot weather with these tips.
“31°C but feels like 37°C” – this is today’s weather forecast and it’s not even the hottest day we’ve experienced in Singapore. Temperatures are soaring and heatwaves are happening in our city and around the world. Yup, climate change is real, people! To avoid a potential heatstroke or sweaty mess, we’ve put together a handy list of ways to keep it cool in Singapore’s hot weather and perennial summer.
How to stay cool in Singapore’s hot weather
1. Never underestimate the power of H2O
Whether you’re working from home or in the office, it’s good to have at least a two-litre water bottle by your side. Staying hydrated with sufficient liquids actually helps to regulate your body temperature. Your body also loses water through perspiration so if you want to avoid dehydration, drink up!
2. Or take it up a notch with thirst-quenching drinks
Do you hate the taste of water? There’s no excuse to avoid it since there are other ways to zhuzh it up. Quench your thirst with refreshing fruit-infused water (we like ours with cucumber and lemon slices plus a sprig of mint leaves), coconut water, watermelon juice, cold peppermint tea, chrysanthemum tea and isotonic drinks with electrolytes. Or get a bottle of cooling water, a traditional Chinese medicine drink that’s said to relieve body heat.
3. Avoid ‘heaty’ food
“Eh, that’s too ‘heaty’, have something cooling instead.” Growing up, we’ve all had this conversation in our household. Even now, when someone’s infected with Covid, their care package includes ‘cooling’ items. For the uninitiated, the terms ‘heaty’ and ‘cooling’ are derived from an age-old belief that certain foods can cause various effects on the body.
Examples of ‘heaty’ food include spicy food, durian, chocolate, deep-fried food and red meat. They’re believed to cause thirst, fever and sore throat when taken excessively. On the other hand, ‘cooling’ food is said to remove the heat from your body. This includes items such as mangosteen, watermelon, green tea and water chestnut. There aren’t any official studies to back this up, but hey, it helps some of us.
4. Spritz on a facial mist
We can’t tell you how much a facial mist comes in handy on especially warm days. It’s also a great pick-me-up for slow afternoons. We rotate between Glow Recipe, Bioderma and Eau Thermale Avene.
5. Take a stroll through our green spaces
Try before you deny! It may seem counterproductive to explore the great outdoors when it’s so darn hot. But taking a walk in a shady green space filled with trees is actually cooling and also calms your mind. Try forest bathing to be one with nature.
6. Wear sunscreen
‘Nuff said. We don’t have to tell you twice. But remember to apply sunscreen if you’re going to be indoors too – oh, and don’t forget to reapply it throughout the day!
7. Wear a hat
We don’t know why we don’t see a lot of this in Singapore but wearing a hat protects you from the sun’s damaging rays. So don’t just limit it to the beach or an outdoor activity. Pick a sun hat, visor, cap or bucket hat with a wide brim and opt for darker colours. Some even have built-in UV protection – go for something with an ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) of 30 and above.
8. Keep it cool in the bedroom
Imagine walking up all sweaty and hot from the heat. We don’t want that. Keep it cool by changing your pillow covers and bedsheets to light and breathable fabric such as linen, cotton, lyocell and tencel. A cooling pillow helps a ton, too!
9. Bring out a portable fan
We used to be wary of what people thought when they saw us walking around with a portable fan. Now, we simply don’t care. In fact, it’s a staple item in our bag. Forget about the weird stares you get while waiting for the bus or MRT. They’re simply jealous and probably wish they had a portable fan for themselves. There are many rechargeable portable fans on the market, in various colours and with a stand, holder and clip-on feature. Take your pick.
10. Run to an air-conditioned place
Singaporeans love aircon (portable aircons included!) but turning it on at home for prolonged hours increases carbon footprint and the electricity bill. Instead, take a break and head to the nearest shopping mall. You’ll cool down and get your retail therapy fix along the way.
11. Wear breathable fabric
We love wearing body-hugging ensembles that show off our gorgeous body shapes but save those for cooler days. Loose clothing that doesn’t cling to the skin is your best friend during summer weather. Dress in lighter shades and in cooler fabrics such as cotton, linen, seersucker and hemp.
12. Get an insulated water bottle that keeps your drink cool
Another staple that should be in your bag: vacuum insulated water bottles. These babies keep the temperature of your liquid consistent whether it’s a refreshingly cool drink or hot coffee. Lucky for us, these water bottles come in a variety of colours, sizes and features.
13. Plan a day at the beach
Is the heat getting to you? Cancel all plans and make it a beach day. Dust out your picnic mat and basket, and bask in the sun and beach breeze. Make yourself comfy at a shady spot or park yourself at a beach club.
14. Put your skincare in the fridge and use it later
Picture this: you just got out of a cool shower and want to keep it that way. So you pull out your cleansing balm, face mask or moisturiser from the fridge for an extra cool 20 minutes. Absolute bliss.
15. Jump into a pool
Grab your best swimsuit and make a splash at a public swimming pool near you. Or check into a hotel that boasts a spectacular pool. From Capella Singapore to The Outpost Hotel Sentosa, the choices are aplenty.
16. Have a snow day
Snow in our tropical city? You bet. Snow City is a snow chamber that gives you a close-to-real-life winter experience any day of the year. Up to 15 tons of snow is made each week to maintain the snow levels on the grounds. There’s a winter shooting arena, bumper car arena, and an ice hotel stretching across a 17-metre snow field. You’ll definitely forget the blistering heat outside.
17. Get a dehumidifier
There’s no such thing as crisp weather in Singapore. Our frizzy hair is proof of it. Rain or shine, humidity is always there like that annoying relative that just won’t leave. Dial it down (the humidity, not the relative) with a handy dehumidifier that keeps moisture out of living spaces.
18. Add a solar film to your window
So you’ve got the living room and bedrooms covered with blackout curtains or blinds. But how about areas such as the service yard and kitchen windows? Block nasty sun rays with solar, UV and tinted window films.
Keep it cool, people! These tips will help you stay chill in Singapore’s hot weather.