25 TIPS FOR TRAVELING IN THE HEAT OF THE SUMMER
Knowing these tips and tricks can help us make the most of a travel trip and not let the heat of the summer get in the way of a good time!
After living in Arizona State, I experienced triple-digit temperatures up to 120 degrees. I quickly learned to adjust to the heat, I wish I would have these tips. I hope to make your travel trip a bit more comfortable for you.
1. TRY TO ADJUST TO THE TEMPERATURE SLOWLY
Try to adjust to the warmth by slowly adjusting the temperature in your car and home over time.
If the heat of the summer is 90 degrees outside, try having it around 75 to make it an easy transition when going outside, slowly adjusting it by a degree or two every so often. The same goes for air conditioning in the car.
Our body temperature is an average of 97-98, in a healthy range. We function best when the ambient temperature is around 70 degrees Fahrenheit, where we feel most comfortable, especially because moving generates more heat. I’m breaking a sweat just thinking about it! Phew!
2. ALWAYS HAVE A PAIR OF SUNGLASSES
Sunglasses not only make a stylish accessory, but sunglasses also have a host of benefits for your eyes. They cut down on glare, prevent problems, and contribute to better vision. Eyes can get easily strained, sunglasses keep the eyes safe and more comfortable.
♻ Sustainability Tip: Sunglasses can be eco-friendly too! There are sunglasses out there made of recycled plastics and some that are even fully compostable! Check them out here.
I personally love the compostable/plant-based sunglasses because I often lose or drop mine out on adventures. Knowing the sunglasses will not harm the environment is always a reassuring feeling.
3. CARRY EYE DROPS
Some climates really require eye drops, the desert is one of them. Anything from sand and dirt blowing in the air, to the lack of humidity and heat of the summer drying them out.
I was actually pretty shocked by how often they needed to be applied. An eye doctor had told me that in the desert, they are best applied about three times a day; morning, noon, and night.
These eye drops have only one preservative that dissipates with oxygen, leaving only the natural solution when applied to our eyes. Blink was actually recommended to me by a professional eye doctor, see Blink eye drops here!
4. KEEP YOUR HEAD PROTECTED
Investing in something to cover our heads can seem a bit cliché, but when it cools us down by at least a few degrees, it can make the world of a difference.
I suggest not getting black because it will absorb the heat. Yes, I know black is an awesome shade, it’s my favorite as well, but you’ll see what I mean if you do! Trust me, I learned the hard way! The heat of the summer is no joke!
Hats help give us that extra coverage from the sun, especially on our head, ears, and neck. They block out the sun’s harsh UV light rays, protect our eyes and skin, and keeps our core temperature cooler.
Here are some great hat options, or even here.
Another option is getting a scarf or bandana, these not only protect our head but can also protect our face.
Often times in the desert people cover their faces with scarves and bandanas to prevent the sand from blowing into the mouth, nose, and eyes. Check out a couple of options here or here.
5. WEAR LIGHT AND BREEZY CLOTHING
Wearing light and breezy clothing will keep our core temperature cooler and help prevent us from sweating so much. Our core temperature rises from heat, exercises, stress, or hormones.
Sweating helps our body naturally release heat to maintain an optimal body temperature. However, sweating more also means we lose more liquids, which can cause dehydration. So investing in some breathable clothing helps!
One of my all-time favorite protective long sleeve shirts is UV protection and has a hood. It’s lightweight and breezy, and made by Patagonia, I highly recommend it. Check it out here.
♻ Sustainability Tip: Patagonia uses recycled plastics in most of their clothing, they are an eco-minded company. Patagonia uses recycled materials, hemp, organic cotton, donates 1% to the planet, fair trade.
Also make sure to not wear black, dark colors absorb heat! Wearing lighter colors reflects the sunlight.
6. SANDALS, SANDALS, AND OF COURSE SANDALS
I’m almost always wearing sandals. Wearing closed-toed shoes in the heat of the summer can cause feet to get extremely sweaty. Sweat can lead to fungus and also blisters from friction.
Sandals are the most breathable, I absolutely love my Xero shoes! Xeros are lightweight, flexible, grounding, and so easy to maneuver. Check out the Xeros I wear here.
I also highly recommend not walking barefoot. Oftentimes cement, rocks, metals, or anything else can absorb heat and burn the bottoms of feet or even paws of animals. Animals look so dang adorable in those booties though!
There is actually a joke that gets shared around Arizona about the asphalt or car hoods getting so hot that people fry eggs on it. Just don’t let that be your feet!
7. PUT THINGS IN SEALED CONTAINERS
Keeping belongings in sealed containers could truly prevent a mess! The sun will melt some of them or cause things to burst if you’re not careful.
Also, be aware of leakage, if the container is not sealed, oftentimes things will spill out of the cracks. This most frequently happens with chapsticks/lip balm, lotions, oils, candles, etc.
It can quickly ruin a mood and other belongings to find out something has leaked all over a bag or the car. Let’s not let that happen!!
I absolutely love my Stasher bags for this. Not only are they TSA approved, they seal, durable, and are so easy to clean if anything does happen. This pack here is great to start out with! REI also has some available as well, click here.
8. KEEP YOUR ELECTRONICS OUT OF THE SUN
Electronics left out in the heat or sun will overheat and go crazy! Most phones will warn us when it’s overheating, but not all electronics do. Keeping electronics close or stored in cool environments is ideal.
Often times, electronics will also lose battery faster when it’s sunnier outside because the brightness is up all the way up, it’s always a good idea to keep a travel charger handy when going out into the sun. This one is a great travel charger.
9. SHADE IS IDEAL
Shade can often be 10-15 degrees cooler than the sunlight. Getting into the shade at every possible chance makes a huge difference; whether it be walking or even parking.
I personally will walk under covers, walk behind tall vehicles, or even stay under a canopy when outside. Although it can be nice to soak up sun every once in a while, the sun can get pretty intense.
Often times I’ve noticed people walking around with an umbrella to cover themselves. Here are some options for canopies and here are some options for umbrellas.
10. HAVE SUNSCREEN READY
Apply liberally and often! It’s recommended to apply about ½ a teaspoon at least to the face itself and reapply every 2-3 hours. Referencing Pub Med
Prevention is always the way to go! I recommend this sunscreen here. Raw Elements sunscreen is lightweight and considered a solid with TSA, so its backpacking, hiking and travel friendly too.
The consistency is a thick white paste, and is best applied with a light lotion underneath it to help the sunscreen spread.
♻ Sustainable Tip/Highlight: Raw Elements is toxin free, all natural, and comes in a metal container making it more eco-friendly. (I was actually recommended this product by the flight attendants on Hawaiian Airlines to protect their coral reefs!)
11. HAVE SUNBURN RELIEF PRODUCTS – JUST IN CASE!
Hot climates often have very intense heat, and it really doesn’t take long for a sunburn to happen. A sunburn can easily happen from simply 5 minutes of sun exposure (This is why they start people with less than 5 minutes in a tanning bed for their first time.)
Sunburns can take anywhere from days to weeks to heal, but having sunburn relief products help aid quicker and more comfortably. Sometimes the heat of the summer is quite intense, and it’s best to be prepared!
I often make something similar to this lotion here or have this small balm here for traveling.
12. MAKE PLANS AROUND PEAK HEAT
If you’re planning on doing any outdoor activities, it’s best to plan early in the morning or later in the evening. It’s normally a bit cooler at these times of day.
When we are moving our body, we are also working up our blood flow, which increases our body’s temperature. Try to avoid overheating or being in intense direct heat of the summer sun.
There is this helpful app called sun positions, sunrise, and sunset demo. This app in widget form shows the sunrise, sunset, and the golden hours of the day. If deciding to go outside, it is best to stay closest to the sunrise and sunset to get the coolest temperatures.
The sun’s rays are strongest between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.
After recently purchasing a Garmin watch from REI, I noticed that one of the downloadable face templates for the watch, called the “Data lover”, which shows the sunrise and sunset as well! How convenient is that?! Absolutely astonishing for those that are sunrise and sunset chasers. Check out the Garmin watches here!
13. DRINK A LOT OF WATER
I mean a lot! You’ll get dehydrated faster because your body is trying to maintain a core temperature by sweating. Sweating causes us to lose fluids fast, especially with the intense heat of the summer!
Keeping ourselves excited about getting water in is key! Try making water taste better by making fruit infusions. A few great water infusions have strawberries, lemons, oranges, limes, ginger, mint, or even cucumber. Mix it up! Get yourself excited about drinking water! You won’t regret it!
In general, it’s recommended to drink between half an ounce and an ounce of water for each pound we weigh, every day.” For example, if you weigh 150 pounds, that would be 75 to 150 ounces of water a day. Referencing WebMD
14. ALWAYS HAVE MORE WATER THAN YOU THINK YOU’LL NEED
We go through it faster than we think! I keep about a half gallon of water on me at all times. I even have some backup in my car.
This half gallon insulated water jug will keep water cool and is a great back up! I’ll often fill them with half ice to enjoy that extra cool down. Check it out here.
In the desert, sweat evaporates extremely fast, and it can be a bit harder to notice how much water our bodies have truly lost. Stay hydrated always! ♡
15. ELECTROLYTES ARE MORE IMPORTANT THAN MOST EXPECT
Electrolytes are minerals found in your blood that help regulate and control the balance of fluids in the body and help with absorption of water. Staying on top of electrolytes can prevent heat exhaustion and heatstroke.
Laird Superfood Hydrate is a clean and natural form of electrolytes that I often turn to on a daily basis when in hot or dry climates. Its ingredients are freeze dried coconut water and minerals from marine algae. It tastes similar to coconut water, YUM! This hydration powder has been my favorite so far, click here to see.
I also keep these emergency electrolyte tablets, that are chewable, in my first aid kit that I bring with me everywhere. These tablets here are essential, especially when being active outdoors or in the heat.
Want to know what’s in my first aid kit? Comment below and I will write an article on it!
I still have yet to find a compostable or more eco friendly electrolyte mix that is also all natural, let me know if you find anything!
Some people often make their own by drinking tea cold or fruit, with some salt and sugar. However, this does not have the same absorption affect and can often spike our sugar intake.
♻ Sustainability Tip: Another great way to get electrolytes is by drinking leftover brines. Some examples of brines can be from olives, pickles, sauerkraut, etc. What a great way to avoid food waste and hydrate the body! YAY!
16. KEEP THE DRINKING WATER COLD
I also strongly recommend keeping your water in a stainless steel or titanium water bottle. It will keep your water on the cooler side, which will also keep your core temperature optimal.
Be sure to avoid aluminum. Aluminum can get into your bloodstream and cause issues. Here are the water bottles I strongly recommend!
I personally prefer either Klean Kantine or Hydro Flask. Klean Kantine has the least plastic, but Hydro Flask has straw accessories that really get us to actively get us drinking more water. Here is the Hydro Flask I use, and here is the straw attachment.
REI has both Klean Kantine and Hydro Flask. Earth Hero also has Klean Kantine and Hydro Flask.
Plus, we can never have enough ice cubes! Check out these awesome eco friendly and durable ice cube trays here.
17. REFRESH WITH COLD WATER ON THE BODY
Cold showers are a great way to aid in muscle recovery, reduce bodily inflammation, keep your temperature down, save on cost, and help the environment.
♻ Sustainable Tip: Energy or propane is usually used to heat the water for hot showers, so by taking cold showers we don’t end up using as much energy. Yay! Eco-win! An even better option than showering is to stick our feet and hands in cold water, it will almost instantly lower our temperature and uses even less water than a shower.
Another way to keep our body temperature low is to go swimming; there are oceans, lakes, rivers, and creeks that are great for taking a dip!
Have you ever seen nurses or caregivers place a cold, damp cloth across the forehead? This is a method that is also used to cool the body’s temperature. It works great and can be done almost anywhere!
18. KEEP THE SKIN HYDRATED
If the skin doesn’t stay hydrated, the outermost layer of the skin (The epidermis layer) will crack and often become a weakened defense against the intense heat of the summer and sun.
Think of a canyon, which allows the sun to get into the cracks and crevices. EEKK! Our skin is virtually the same, except on a smaller scale. So, dry and cracked skin is more prone to sun damage.
The first product I would recommend for hydration is facial toner. Facial toners help aid the skin in retaining moisture and help aid the skin from the elements by minimizing pores. I currently have one similar to this here.
I currently make something very similar to this body butter; they have lavender, rose + sandalwood, soft rose, forest, and fir. All of them have very similar ingredients and are nontoxic, but the lavender is always a comforting smell for me personally.
Comment down below if you’d love to see a skincare routine and what I use for my skincare!
19. CUT BACK ON APPLIANCE USAGE
Appliances naturally radiate heat. A few examples of appliances that radiate extreme heat are dryers, ovens, washers, blow-dryers, etc.
♻ Sustainable Tip: Try hang drying clothes instead of using the dryer. This can cut costs, save energy, cut back on major heat, and even make clothes last longer.
Even a simple para cord can be used to hang clothes on, here is one that even has hooks to make it easier to clasp onto things.
20. BE CAUTIOUS WHEN GRABBING THINGS
This tip similarly follows the barefoot tip. So many items absorb heat and can become dangerously hot with the sun beating down on them.
A few examples of this are seatbelts, keys, zippers, door handles, steering wheels, most things on/in cars, cement, rocks, and most metal.
Try using a cloth, that scarf or bandana I had mentioned earlier, the long sleeve, or that UV protection shirt.
21. BE CAREFUL OF BROKEN GLASS & DON’T LEAVE GLASS OUTSIDE
Glass can act as a magnifier and can start fires, this is why backpackers or hikers are asked not to bring glass on most hiking trails.
Dry and hot climates are already at a high risk of fires, this tip is essential for preserving our land and homes. The heat of the summer sun can be magnified and start fires.
Having a stainless steel water bottle or when bringing food, store in stasher bags. Both are easy swaps and are also more eco-friendly!
22. DON’T LEAVE SHOES OUTSIDE
So, you know how we like to go inside the house or car when the temperatures get too hot? Well, little critters like to hide in dark spaces like shoes to avoid direct sunlight too.
Don’t leave shoes outside and avoid having cracks between the house and the outdoors. Otherwise, critters like scorpions and snakes could end up in the shoes.
23. KEEP HAIR MAINTAINED
Having long hair also holds heat, and acts as an insulator.
So keeping hair up, braided, up, or short really helps to air out some of that built-up heat. Even getting haircuts regularly can really make a difference by a degree or two!
♻ Sustainability Tip: I recently discovered these biodegradable hair ties! Check them out here. Even though I personally haven’t gotten to try them, everyone I have met that has tried them loves them!
24. EAT PLENTY OF FRUITS AND VEGGIES
A lot of fruits and veggies also have a high water content, making them very hydrating. For example, watermelon is made up of mostly watery juice, that’s how it got its name!
Plus, fruits and veggies are just downright delicious!
Each climate has different fruits and veggies to offer, try having more fun exploring different fruits in the area. The heat of the summer can also offer wonderful bounties.
Curious to know how to shop ethically, locally, and sustainably? Let me know in the comments below if you would love an article about it!
25. CHECK-IN WITH YOURSELF OFTEN IN THE HEAT OF THE SUMMER
Checking in with ourselves could be taking care of our skin, checking in with a dermatologist annually, asking ourselves if we need a break from the sun, or to just see if we need more water.
Life is often about balance, checking in with ourselves regularly to make sure we are blanched mentally and physically can make a difference in our experience. Hopefully, these tips aid you in your adventures and keep you safe.
Have fun and enjoy the sun!
Know someone traveling in the heat? Share this article with them, it could really make a difference in their trip!
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