I'm an energy expert – seven ways to stay cool in the heatwave and they're all FREE | The Sun

TRYING to stay cool without resorting to turning on the fan or an air-conditioning unit isn't easy.

You might assume that a UK heatwave means you'll at least be saving money on your energy bills.

But a number of heatwave devices are actually adding to your costs.

Millions of households are struggling to cut their energy usage in the cost of living crisis – particularly as it's now estimate the average bill will hit £3,200 in October.

But it may be tempting to leave a fan on overnight to keep cool, or fire up other heatwave devices such as a cooling mattress or drinks fridge.

But John Stirzaker, expert at money-saving site NetVoucherCodes, said there are still ways you can keep cool for free.

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He has revealed his top tips for tackling the heatwave – without turning the fan on.

Make a cooling mist

Spritz yourself with some cooling spray can help you feel fresher.

These are available ready-made to buy for as little as £1.49.

But you could always make your own too.

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Grab a spray bottle and fill it with water, and a few drops of peppermint extract if you have it – if not you can pick some up for around £1.50.

John said: "The mint will make you feel extra cool as the water evaporates from your skin."

Make a fan

You might remember this one from school – but it's super easy to make your own handheld fan.

All you need is a sheet of paper or card and to fold it over itself at a thickness of about one inch, and voila – your own fan.

If you don't fancy making one, you can buy them for around £1.

Alternatively, we've rounded up our top battery-powered and electric handheld fans if you want a bit more power for a little less work.

Freeze your water

Filling an old water bottle and putting it in the freezer overnight means you'll never be without a thirst-quenching drink.

As the ice melts, you can drink your cooling water to refresh – and just holding the bottle means you've got a portable ice pack to hand too.

You can add squash if you prefer it to plain water – but either way, don't fill it all the way to the rim or it could explode and burst the bottle as it freezes.

Fill your ice cube tray

While you're in the freezer, don't forget to load your ice cube tray.

You can fill the tray with fizzy drinks or fruit juice to make snack-sized lollies or with chopped up fruit to pop in your drink.

John said: "You can go one step further by freezing aloe vera gel in an ice cube tray too – it's great for soothing sunburn."

Keep cool at night

If you've resorted to switching on the fan at night, then there's one trick you can use to maximise its effect, says John.

"Place a towel at the bottom of your bed and slip on a pair of socks that you've soaked in cold water.

"Then point the fan at your feet – it will keep your whole body cool, and the towel means your mattress won't get soaked."

He also suggested popping your pillowcases in a sealed bag in the freezer for ten minutes before bedtime.

This means you have a nice cool pillow to rest your head on, which should help you get to sleep more comfortably.

Shut out the sun

Keeping your house cool through the summer months can be difficult.

If you're at home in the day then open all the windows – particularly ones at the front and back of the house, so you can get a breeze running through your home and moving the air around.

John said keeping blinds and curtains closed can also help to shut out the sun and stop rooms from overheating.

Be sure not to run any hot appliances unless you really need to as well – that means ditching the hairdryer or straighteners for a few days.

John said: "Turning on your oven on a sweltering day is just asking for trouble too – the last thing you need is more heat in the house.

"Try preparing foods from the fridge to keep cool, like salads or sandwiches."

Take a shower

It might sound counter-intuitive, but taking a mildly warm shower can actually be more effective than jumping in a freezing ice-bath in the hot weather.

John said: "It gradually lowers your body's temperature, making you feel cooler for longer."

If you've already had a shower and are try to avoid racking up a big water bill, try running your wrists or ankles under cool water for a few seconds to get a immediate cool down.

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Elsewhere, we've looked at how you can save money at every time of day during the heatwave.

And Martin Lewis has revealed four ways to protect yourself before energy bills rocket.

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