How to keep cool this summer: Social distancing style

A woman holding a drink floating on a pool
Emily Bi/Senior Staff

Related Posts

As the hottest days of the year approach, a lot of us are stuck inside our homes social distancing instead of cooling off at the beach or pool. Though it’s no fun to be sweating inside your home in the June heat, never fear! Try out some of these ways to keep cool while social distancing.

Kiddie pool social distancing hangout

Sure, the big kid pools are closed, but you can still have some fun in the water by buying an inflatable pool and planning a social distancing pool day! Invite some friends over with their own inflatable pools, and chill out in your driveway or backyard while staying 6 feet apart. If you’re feeling more like a solo adventure, get yourself a cold drink and a book and sit in your kiddie pool by yourself! It’s a great way to catch some rays without sweating off all your sunscreen.

Watch a documentary about penguins

If swimming is not your thing, maybe the key to staying cool this summer is just putting yourself in a cold mindset. I mean, how can you really be that warm when you’re watching those shivering penguins huddle together in freezing winds? Instead of popcorn, eat some ice cream while you watch and drink a cup of very icy water. Make some ice cubes and throw them at your siblings to simulate the chunks of snow being hurled at those little penguins. Immerse yourself in the experience of the penguins. Stop when you get the urge to buy a plane ticket to somewhere snowy. 

Make homemade popsicles 

Hoping for a cold treat but you already spent your food budget for the week? Dreading facing lines outside the grocery store? Make popsicles out of juice, or whatever else you have in the back of your fridge! If you have a popsicle mold, that’s great! But, you could always use a plastic cup and a popsicle stick, or any other utensil. Don’t worry if your popsicle starts melting minutes after you’ve started eating it — you could always blend up the frozen popsicle chunks and make a popsicle smoothie!

Sleep outside 

If your house gets super stuffy at night, skip the air conditioning and just go sleep outside. Maybe it’s time to crack out the hammock you haven’t been able to hang up at the Glade, or you could just drag a mattress or sleeping pad outside. Just because you can’t travel doesn’t mean you can’t camp! If you want to get really wild, you could set up a tent and pretend you’re camping in a very cold arctic forest … maybe it’s time for one of those penguin movies.

Don’t go hiking on a day when it’s 100 degrees Fahrenheit

As important as it is to get outside and stay active, hiking during a heat wave probably isn’t the best move if you’re trying to stay cool. This feels like a simple rule, but it’s surprisingly hard to stick to when you have almost nothing to do and have restricted outside activities. If you do really want to go on a hike, maybe find one that you know is very shaded, or go on a hike to a lake or creek. Another good option is a sunset hike or sunrise hike — get outside at an hour that is not controlled by the sun. Or you could just not go on a hike.

Put some aloe lotion in the fridge for that sunburn you got because you didn’t heed this list

So, you didn’t try these great ways to stay cool and you decided to just lay in the sun for hours with no sunscreen on instead. And now your skin is peeling off your body? Sounds about right. Put some lotion (an aloe-based one is especially soothing) in the fridge and slather all over to soothe any sunburn! Even if you’re not yet burned, this can be a good way to cool down. If you’re that person who only remembers to put on sunblock after you’ve already been outside for two hours, pop one of those in the fridge as well! And if that didn’t work, maybe it’s time for an ice bath

Now you’re ready for your coolest summer yet! You might not be doing anything that exciting, but at least you won’t be as warm as usual. Maybe? We wish you luck on your chill summer journey!

Contact Elysa Dombro at [email protected].