I love a good dry heat, but my tolerance for humidity borders on zero. When it’s humid out, it’s like every part of my body is in utter rebellion. My feet grow a size, it’s pointless to style my hair, and sweat pours from places I’d rather not discuss.
With so many, well, delicate concerns to consider once the weather heats up, it’s a wonder I get through the season at all. A trip to a theme park in the dead heat a few years ago wearing all the wrong things (shoes that were too tight, and no protection for my thighs and the dreaded “chub rub,”) was enough for me to wise up and find real solutions for all those hot weather wardrobe malfunctions that seemed to creep up on me year after year. I’ve finally found solutions that really work for the most embarrassing situations that plague me in the summer. With these nine hacks in my arsenal, I can finally stay cool and collected even in the dead heat of summer.
1. I’m stuck in my Spanx!
Who doesn’t love to regale her girlfriends with a good I-couldn’t-get-my-shapewear-off-right-before-sexy-time story? Yeah, no one wants to be that person, but you stand a good chance of getting stuck in your girdles when it’s hot and sticky outside. (And do you even want to wear that stuff when it’s that hot?) Sometimes you simply must, though, and that’s when you turn to fabrics that are designed to wick moisture from your body and keep you as cool and comfortable as possible, despite how awful it may be outside. One to try: Jockey Staycool High Waisted Shaping Brief ($23.99).
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2. My underboobs are…glowing.
We don’t sweat, we glow. That’s what we’re told anyway, but really? In the scorching dead of summer, well, reality sets in and you realise that, yes, in fact, you do sweat all over the place, including beneath your breasts. There are several solutions out there, including moisture-soaking sweat pads that fit inside your bra. Another option is to sprinkle on a little LUSH Silky Underwear Dusting Powder ($8.95), which contains soothing cocoa butter and a lovely jasmine fragrance.
3. My thighs are each other’s worst enemies.
Affectionately known as “chub rub,” or the phenomenon wherein your thighs lovingly meet and continue to mingle all day long with every step you take, every move you make, this may be one of summer’s most dastardly body woes, resulting in chafed, irritated skin that can really make life pretty miserable. The most affordable and effective answer to this issue is Monistat, which you need (stat). The brand’s Complete Care Chafing Relief Powder Gel ($5.99) works magic anywhere you experience raw, irritated skin due to friction and heat.
4. My silver necklace is looking a little green.
Heat can also do a number on your costume jewellery. Sure, it may be inexpensive and easily replaceable, but no one wants to see an accessory they love go the way of the trash bin. Avoid exposing your precious baubles to humidity and store them in mini zipper baggies ($4.50). Take off any jewellery (fake or otherwise) before jumping into the pool, as chlorine can also steal its shine. Finally, avoid leaving jewellery in the sunlight, or its colour may be affected.
5. I’ve got sausage feet.
It’s not unusual to develop swollen feet and ankles during summertime. The heat causes your blood vessels to expand, which leads to a collection of excess fluid in these areas. Usually this can be alleviated by staying out of the heat, keeping your legs elevated, and drinking plenty of water. (Make it a habit by filling up a cute S’well water bottle, $35.) However, this condition (known as edema) can be a sign of something much more serious. If you continue to experience fluid retention and notice abnormal swelling that doesn’t subside, contact your medical provider.
6. I could be Weird Al’s hair twin.
Ever seen that episode of Friends where Monica develops massive hair as a result of the Barbados heat? If that’s you every single day from late May through early September, it’s truly time to handle your situation. I love a product that delivers shine and weightless protection to hair, without giving it that sticky, oily look so typical of most moisturisers. One to try: Josie Maran Argan Oil Hair Serum ($12). Pop this travel-size bottle in your carry-on for quick touch-ups. Your hair will look and feel incredibly silky (and just a couple of drops will do).
7. I can’t reach the massive zit on my back.
It’s one thing to deal with a breakout on your chin or forehead (hey, at least you can actually see those up close and develop a plan of attack), but a bout of “bacne” is bound to present some moments of deep frustration. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon to develop zits on your body during summertime. Use a product formulated with salicylic acid to combat breakouts and prevent future ones, such as Murad Clarifying Body Spray ($40). It attacks acne while clearing up old scars, giving you back…your back.
8. My life revolves around an ingrown hair.
Hair removal is a PITA, no doubt, but add in the unpleasantness that is an ingrown hair and before you know it, you’ve spent ten hours Googling “giant bump down there” and frantically reassuring yourself that it’s not something worse. Nip every single ingrown hair in the bud with Tend Skin ($20), the holy grail of summer beauty products. And to prevent ingrown issues in the future, be sure to exfoliate regularly (and gently).
9. I’m pretty sure my office mates can smell my feet.
You’re fabulous in every way, which means you’re also 100% normal in every way. And that means that, sometimes, summer has its way with your feet and leaves them kind of sweaty and odorous. Baby powder will easily absorb sweat, while an insole, such as Summer Soles Ultra Absorbent Insoles ($8), can also wick away moisture and leave feet dry whether you’re indoors or outside.
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