To the Short Get-Away...
Here’s to a summer of new possibilities. Of getting out and about. A season where short get-aways are called for. A long weekend with buddies in a cabin, overnights with the in-laws… Or maybe there’s the last minute impulse to just get out of town.
And what do you do? Pack light. Keep it simple. Unless “formal” is in the mix, a small backpack, and some essential elements may be all that’s needed. What works for us: the Sir Cadian essentials: tees, briefs, and shorts. So stylishly versatile, and morning-to-night comfortable, these multi-functional elements can go from bed to bbq, to beach, to happy hour, and who will know that it’s your sleepwear they’re complimenting?
When the heat of summer leaves you with disturbed sleeps, it’s time to rethink bedtime…Sure there are A/C and fans that help, and expensive cooling mattresses and pillows you can invest in, but there are a few easy steps you can take on your own that can help you beat the heat and enjoy a better night’s sleep. Our suggestions:
- Eat light (500 or so calories) and early! Schedule your last meal (or snack attack!) of the day at least 3 hours before bedtime and you’ll avoid those digestive disorders that can make you restless and/or keep you awake.
- Avoid caffeine. Sure you know someone who can drink a late night latte and sleep like a baby, but it’s likely not you.
- Go “virgin” on your evening drinks. Yes, alcohol can make you sleep but overindulgence in particular can result in a restless night's sleep. According to the National Sleep Foundation, adenosine (a chemical in the brain that acts as a sleep inducer) increases while drinking, so while you doze off quicker, once it subsides you are more likely to wake up. Additionally, alcohol inhibits REM sleep, which is often considered the most mentally restorative phase of sleep.
- Take a warm shower. A warm bath or shower one to two hours before heading to bed helps the body prepare for sleep by lowering body temperature. It also helps regulate the body’s body clock – or circadian rhythms - which in turn are controlled by subtle changes in core body temperature. By lowering your existing core body temperature, you can achieve the right temperature for sleep, naturally.
- Choose breathable fabrics that bring airflow to your body. Wearing nothing might sound like a cool thing to do, but it’s often not. Even in the buff you’ll still sweat, and if there’s nothing to wick it away, the sweat will still linger on the body. (Note: we think our Boxer is sexier and has the anti-sweat, anti-bacteria breathability that helps keep you fresh, but we admit we’re biased.)
- Cool down the room before bedtime. Block out the sun by closing blinds or curtains early in the day. If you’ve no AC, use fans to move the air around and cool the room down before bedtime. Powering down and unplugging unnecessary electronics in the bedroom can also help.
- Kiss your partner good night before you head off to the guest room (or air bed) to sleep, somewhat cooler, alone. (Yes, sorry.)
The Black and White of a Cool Summer
By proxy, white is the color of summer. It looks fresh, but does wearing white really keep you cooler? Well, it’s more complicated than you would imagine and it all comes down to science.
For starters: white clothing reflects sunlight (good), but can also reflect the body’s own heat back towards your body, so the net effect under identical conditions may be less cooling than if you wore black. However, thin black clothing transmits heat to the skin, making the person hot. So what about Bedouins in the desert who wear black? Apparently their relief comes in the thickness of the robes. The outer layer of fabric gets hotter because black absorbs more heat but, because of the thickness of the fabric, that heat doesn't get transmitted to the skin. To make it more complicated, it may all come down to weather conditions. Apparently, as per an experiment that involved black birds with fluffed or flattened feathers, if there's wind, black clothing is the better choice for those who want to keep cool. Our response: Black or white, breeze or not, take your pick, but make sure the fabric is breathable - like the Tencel Modal™ fabric of our Sir Cadian tees!
The New Bar Code
With no-alcohol drinks becoming the choice of a growing flock of adults, mocktails – often plant-based with a healthy botanical twist - are having their day in the sun – and not just with the wellness tribe. Ideal for designated drivers who still want to participate in a happy hour, lunchtime get-togethers when slacking off in the afternoon isn’t cool, and all those who prefer, for reasons of their own, to be alcohol-free. While buying is an easy option - Curious Elixirs for one will deliver their booze-free, adaptogen infused, mocktails to your door, and your local bodega likely has a few options in ready-to-pop cans - why not become your own mixologist?
What you’ll need: Ingredients will vary according to the mocktail you’re intending to make but may include:
- Flavored syrups (purchase or make your own simple syrup)
- Bubbles (club soda, ginger ale, sparkling water, tonic)
- Ice cubes
- Some acid – like pickle juice/apple cider vinegar
- Bitters & garnishes - mint, for instance
- A muddler, long stirrer and cocktail glasses - say a Collins - for that extra flourish
If serious, and your palette is insisting upon some reference to actual spirits, you may also want to invest in some of the non-alcoholic spirits (as in, tequila, gin, vodka and whisky) now available from companies like Seedlip where all that’s required is a splash of something sparkling, some ice, and perhaps some garnish.
As for that “stirred or shaken” decision; if icy cool and refreshing is what you’re after, load up the ice and go for the “shake”!
Our suggestion: Virgin Margaritas