How to Keep Cool in the Office

 While met with excitement from school children currently on summer break, news that the UK heatwave will continue long into next week was almost drowned-out by the collective groan from office workers.

With another week of air conditioning and body odor fear looming, we’ve decided to take matters into our own hands by compiling this list of alternative ways to keep cool in the office. And no – none of them include walking around barefoot (we’re looking at you, Deputy Prime Minister).

  • Colour change. Like a true chromatophore, shaking up your colour scheme works wonders in the heat. Trading in blacks and navys for a lighter, fresher palette of light greys, taupe, blues, and browns will better reflect the sun’s rays. Consider the fabric, too. Sticking to lightweight cottons is your best option – synthetic fibres are workplace suicide on hot days.
  • Don a suit to the office? Avoid short-sleeves under your jacket. This is just etiquette – and, unfortunately, etiquette makes very few allowances for hazy summer days. Aren’t we a strange and unique species? Roll up your sleeves when it comes to time in front of the computer – this will allow you to cool of quicker, whilst retaining a level of professionalism.
  • Always travel with a strong antiperspirant and a spare shirt. Endured the commute from hell? At least you’ll be able to freshen up when you arrive at your desk.
  • Drink water constantly. Two thirds of Americans don’t drink enough water on a daily basis anyway, but there’s no time more imperative to do so than when the temperatures are high. Make the water cooler your best friend. Add a little mint, or a slice of orange or cucumber, to maximise freshness (and deliciousness).
  • Keep air circulating throughout your office. While experts vary in opinion as to whether windows open or closed is the best policy, circulation is absolutely imperative in getting rid of that stuffy humidity. Fans, open doors, and air conditioning will provide moments of complete refreshment throughout the day.
  • Make sure you turn off unnecessary appliances and devices. A computer on standby produces a surprising amount of heat, which can have a negative effect on your perfect climate zen.
  • Avoid stress! Fuses may be shorter when the temperature is higher, so be sure to take a minute out. Grab another glass of water (two birds, one stone), stretch, and approach tasks and co-workers with a positive mental attitude. Actually, this tip is good for any time of year.

By Jack Cooper | Published 19 July, 2013

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