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Tips for Staying Cool & Safe During Summer Yard Sale Hunting

stay cool while yard sale hunting

It’s summertime again! And even though the world is in a strange place right now, there are still summer yard sales. This can be a great way to get out of the house, encounter other human beings, and stimulate your mind by being in a new place looking at new things. (Or, rather, new old things!)

Yard sale hunting in the summer is sweaty work, of course, so today in the Yard Sale Radar Blog we’re sharing our top tips for staying cool—and safe—while you’re out there treasure hunting.

Wear a Wide-Brimmed Sun Hat

First up in our list of tips for staying cool while yard sale hunting is a pretty simple one, but often overlooked in the modern, bareheaded era: Wear a sun hat!

Nothing says summer like a classic, wide-brimmed straw hat. That’s what they’re made for! You’ll be a natural at summer garage sales. Straw lets plenty of air through, to keep your head ventilated and help your body dissipate heat. Wearing the right kind of hat, one that blocks the sun but is still breathable, makes a huge difference!

  • Trivia: Your head is second only to your lower back as one of the most important heat dissipation regions on your body. That’s because your head has a lot of blood flow and almost zero insulating body fat, making it an excellent radiator of heat.

Wear Sunscreen, Too

This is more of a safety tip than a tip for staying cool, but be sure to wear sunscreen on all of your exposed body parts, even parts that are shielded by your hat (since we often tilt our heads and receive sunlight on our faces and necks).

There are many different kinds of sunscreens out there. The best ones use zinc oxide for the active ingredient, as this type of sunscreen blocks the widest spectrum of harmful solar radiation. The second best choice is sunscreen that uses titanium dioxide for the active ingredient. However, any sunscreen with an SPF rating is vastly better than wearing no protection at all.

Stay Hydrated

drinking water is a great tip for staying cool

One of the most important tips for staying cool is to stay hydrated. Water is best, but any plain liquid will do: tea, coffee, or juice. Liquids with protein or fat, such as milk, will also work, but they’ll be less effective, since your body will need to use more of its water reserves to digest and metabolize those kinds of molecules.

Alcoholic drinks will actually make you dehydrate more quickly, so avoid them completely until your yard sale hunting is done.

  • Tip: Take a bottle of water with you when you go out. Keep it in your car, or your bag, or even your pants pocket. (A smaller bottle of water should just barely fit enough to stay put.)

Try a Neck Cooler

There’s a handy little accessory you may have never heard about: a neck cooler, also known as a neck chiller, a cooling bandana, or an evaporative neck cooler, among other names. Whatever you want to call it, it’s one of our tips for staying cool when you’re at a summer garage sale.

A neck cooler is basically a cloth bandana filled with tiny beads that can absorb an enormous amount of water. Before you go out yard sale hunting, you soak this bandanna in a bowl of water for a few minutes, then tie it around your neck. (Like your head, your neck is an excellent radiator of heat.) It then uses evaporative cooling in the beads to draw heat out of your body, releasing it into the air.

The cooling effect lasts for a couple of hours, giving it a prominent place on our tips for staying cool, and it really does make a difference! Plus, they look as cool as they feel.

Visit The Nearest Restroom

Here’s one of the coolest pieces of trivia you never knew: When you’re cold, peeing can warm you up. And when you’re hot, peeing can cool you down. Why? Because the urine in your bladder doesn’t generate heat, but holds heat—any water-based liquid is an excellent heat reservoir—and it takes energy from your body to maintain that heat.

When you’re cold, your body is wasting energy warming up your pee. And when you’re hot, the excess heat in your full bladder is keeping you unnecessarily warm. So peeing helps with either problem, and it’s one of our favorite tips for staying cool!

Sit and Rest

Many of us have lost some physical fitness due to spending so much time sitting around indoors. At a summer garage sale, when you’re distracted by all the cool stuff, and you’re not doing anything that feels like exercise, the heat can really sneak up on you. This is especially so if you’re more out of shape than usual, or are a few pounds heavier.

Heat exhaustion can be hard to detect at first, so our next tip for staying cool is to stay on the lookout for it. When you’re out yard sale hunting, be on the lookout for sudden dizziness or confusion, and especially sudden irritation.

If you notice any of that happen to you, sit down in the shade and rest, and drink some water.

Wear Your Mask & Practice Social Distancing

For the foreseeable future, humanity is facing the threat of a global pandemic. The virus is not severe enough that we can’t go outside at all, but when we do go out, we need to be very careful about practicing proper social distancing measures. Here’s how to do that at a summer garage sale.

  • Mask: Like we mentioned, wear your mask. As you probably already know, this is going to heat you up even more, which is why we’ve paired this with our tips for staying cool.
  • Avoid Touching Your Face: When you’re out in public, don’t touch your hands to your face. It’s surprisingly hard to do, but it significantly reduces your chances of getting sick.
  • 6 Feet Apart: Keep at least six feet away from others, and more if you’re downwind of them. This is a good tip for staying cool in its own right, since humans are basically walking heaters.
  • Avoid Touching Merchandise: Handle the goods at the yard sale as little as possible. You don’t have to wear gloves or anything. Just minimize your touch as much as you can.
  • Decontaminate: When you get home, set your yard sale haul aside. Take off your sweaty clothes and get into something fresh and light (another tip for staying cool). Wash your hands thoroughly, and only now can you touch your face again. Leave the yard sale goods alone for a couple of days. Any virus particles on them will mostly die off in that time.

Find Summer Yard Sales With Yard Sale Radar

browsing records at summer garage sales

Yard Sale Radar can help you find yard sales in your area, as well as post a yard sale of your own to get the word out and boost visitors. We make yard sale hunting easier and more fun by helping connect buyers and sellers.

Check out our blog to see more articles like this one. Our blog is full of resources to provide buyers and sellers with helpful information about getting the most out of a yard sale experience.

We hope you enjoyed our tips for staying cool at summer garage sales. Happy hunting!