How to stay cool during the UK heatwave from closing blinds to chilling your bedding – The Sun

IT’S the hottest May the UK has had in more than 20 years, and the driest since records began.

With the next fortnight predicted to bring more blue skies and temperatures of up to 27C, some are even starting to miss those air-conditioned workplaces.

But working from home during a heatwave doesn’t have to be a sweat fest.

From icing your fruit to DIY air conditioning, Jenny Francis reveals the simple hacks that can help you survive isolation without overheating. Here’s our guide to the cheatwave . . .


It’s not as easy to pop to the shops to pick up emergency ice during lockdown, so think outside the (ice) box.

Put fruit such as grapes and berries into the freezer then add to your drink. They cool it down a treat and make a lovely snack once they’ve thawed.


Your pulse points can cool down the rest of your body in moments.

Place a cold flannel or ice cubes in a plastic bag on your wrists and neck and you’ll feel your body temperature drop within seconds.


Maximising the draught of air you get by creating a fan “cross flow”.

Opening a window and positioning a fan alongside it can help to create a cooling flow throughout the room, both at night and during the day if you are working from home.


Keep blinds and curtains closed during the day.

Creating shade in this way stops your rooms from overheating and prevents pollen entering the home if you have windows open – it’s good for hay fever sufferers too.


Don’t stress, chill out.
Studies have shown that just thinking of a cool spring, a glacier or even an ice cream can help to bring down your body temperature. It sounds crazy, but give it a try.


If your bedroom is buzzing with mozzies, it can make trying to get a good night’s sleep a nightmare. But you can make your own, all-natural repellent using simple ingredients you probably have in the kitchen.

Take a lime, slice it in half and stud it with cloves, then place near your bed. Bugs hate the smell and should stay away.


Position a bucket of cool water next to your bed or desk and dip your feet in it when you feel yourself overheating.

It can help cool down the rest of your body by bringing your temperature down and is more effective than a cold shower.


Throwing your bedding inside the fridge/freezer for ten minutes before bedtime brings some much-needed relief from the heat by setting the temperature low before you retire for the night.

Just make sure your bedding is wrapped up tightly in a plastic bag before you chill it. You could cool your pillowcases too.


You don’t need an expensive system to have an icy blast of air con.

Simply grab a plastic bottle or two and put puncture holes from the middle to the top. Fill to just underneath the holes with ice.

Either put the bottles in front of the fan or attach them to the back. The air will be cooled by the ice to create an air-con feeling in any room.

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Why you should be using azelaic acid on your face

If you have been battling acne for years, months, or even weeks and nothing seems to have worked, it’s likely you feel slightly deflated. But if you feel like you’ve tried everything, there’s one product you may not be aware of and we think you should reach for it next. Meet azelaic acid. 

“Azelaic acid is a multi-functional support ingredient for all skin types and also acts as an effective antioxidant,” Sheel Desai Solomon, M.D., a board certified dermatologist and founder of Preston Dermatology & Skin Surgery, told Good Housekeeping. “Nobody knows exactly how it works, but it’s an acid and most acids help exfoliate the skin,” John G. Zampella, M.D., assistant professor in the Ronald O. Perelman Department of Dermatology at NYU Langone Health, told SELF. In other words, it’s perfect for those with active acne or those with acne-prone skin. Here’s why.

Azelaic acids helps fight acne and rosacea

“Azelaic acid has been shown to be bactericidal against p. Acnes, the bacteria on the skin that is one of the causes of acne,” Beverly Hills-based dermatologist Ava Shamban told Allure. As Solomon explained to Good Housekeeping, “It helps the skin to renew itself more quickly and therefore reduces pimple and blackhead formation” and “helps to kill the bacteria that can cause acne and rosacea.” Not only that but it also works to improve skin texture and the appearance of hyperpigmentation.

The best part? It’s easy to incorporate into your skincare routine. “It is safe to use twice a day—morning and night—or once every other day for those with sensitive skin,” Dr. Solomon advised. However, it’s worth noting that for some it can be drying so always follow with moisturizer and SPF if you decided to apply it in the morning to ensure your skin is hydrated and protected throughout the day.

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Your old Disney VHS tapes could be worth £14,000 if you flog them on eBay

ALONG with our original Harry Potter books and beloved Polly Pocket sets, our collection of Disney VHS tapes have got to be among our most prized (and nostalgic) possessions.

But even though we've held onto them for all this time, it appears that our old videos could be worth a small fortune – and we wouldn't part with them for anything less tbh.

In fact a 1999 copy of Mulan was sold in Australia for £11,800 ($21,111AUD)

Trend watcher at eBay Sophie Onikul said that the tape fetched so much because the resurgence of 90s nostalgia.

Speaking to the MailOnline she said: "Thanks to a nostalgic 90s generation and the trend for retro home decor, VHS tapes are back and in high demand with collectors buying into the craze.

"From Disney to classic movies, your old VHS tapes can be a great earner with pristine, special edition sets sometimes fetching thousands of dollars. Dust off your old VHS tapes and get listing!"

And last year a set of 10 original Disney video tapes was flogged on eBay for just shy of £14,000.

Including classics such as Robin Hood, Cinderella, Aladdin and Beauty & The Beast, this impressive collection also boasts the lesser-known (yet equally iconic) The Great Mouse Detective and The Rescuers: Down Under.

But before you turn your nose up at the prospect of someone trying to swindle £14,000 for their old videos, this isn't exactly an uncommon price on eBay.

This particular collection are part of the "rare Black Diamond tapes" which were released by Disney between 1984 and 1993.

Unsure as to whether you have your own "diamond tapes" at home? Well you can easily spot the special edition thanks to "The Classics" logo in the upper spine of the case which has a black diamond round the outside.

What's more, an original Beauty & The Beast VHS is currently on sale for £8,000 on the bidding site while a Little Mermaid video was being flogged for a further £7,500.

And it goes without saying that each of these VHS cassettes are in tip-top condition and don't have any of those fuzzy scenes ours have from years of overuse.

In other words, you can find us hunting round the attic for our old videos for the forseeable future.

Looking to find more cash in the attic? Here's how much your childhood books could be worth now, including a £1,000 Alice in Wonderland.

And your old Polly Pocket set could now be worth over £1,420.

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Scientists claim lying down with your kids until they fall asleep is GOOD for them and can reduce mental health problems later in life

LYING with your kids until they fall asleep is good for their mental health, a top professor says.

Professor Susan Krauss Whitbourne claims there is a long-term benefit to snuggling up beside your child to soothe them to sleep.

This is known as attachment parenting which revolves around responding to your baby’s needs and having close physical contact with them, rather than fitting your baby into your busy schedule.

This can take the form of co-sleeping, breastfeeding and baby-wearing, when you carry a child around with you in a harness or sling.

The child-rearing was pioneered by American paediatrician Dr William Sears, and scientists have been debating the benefits over the years.

Some believe that it is the ideal way to raise secure and independent children, but is it best for your baby?

It’s a sensible approach that fosters physical and psychological health in children

Professor Krauss Whitbourne, a professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, claims there’s evidence that attachment parenting helps kids be successful as adults.

She wrote in Psychology Today: “When you separate the popular exaggerations of AP from the more objectively oriented scientific studies, it’s a sensible approach that fosters physical and psychological health in children.

“We do know from extensive research … that securely attached adults have happier and less conflict-ridden lives. There’s even research to suggest they may be better parents themselves.”

And she’s not the only one to write about the positive results of attachment parenting.

What is attachment parenting and co-sleeping?

Attachment parenting is a philosophy that encourages mothers to build a strong connection with their children through close physical contact and with responsiveness and maternal empathy.

Some believe that it is the ideal way to raise secure and independent children.

It is thought that a strong and trusting attachment to parents forms a solid foundation for good relationships in later life.

It’s estimated that half of all UK mums will share a bed with their baby at some point during the first few months of their little one’s life.

Co-sleeping is when parents sleep in the same space as their baby, whether this is in bed or on the sofa.

According to the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE), Sudden Infant Death Syndrome occurs more often when parents kip with their kids.

Patrice Marie Miller and Michael Lamport Commons at Harvard Medical School conducted a study in 2010 on the child-rearing method.

They said: “[The benefits] include less exposure to stress, which effects [sic] brain development and later reactions to stress. This has been shown to reduce mental health problems in later development.

“Another important psychological benefit is secure attachment, which is the tendency of the child to seek contact with a parent when distressed and to be effectively consoled by that contact.

"The result of more effective emotion regulation and secure attachment … is that children engage more effectively with essential developmental tasks, including peer relationships and schooling.”

And lots of celebrities have got behind the trend too.

The benefits include less exposure to stress

Tamara, the millionaire daughter of Bernie Ecclestone, who has an estimated £300million fortune, is also a strong believer in attachment parenting.

Tamara said that daughter Sophia sleeps in her and husband Jay Rutland’s marital bed, and has done since she was six months old.

Tamara said: “She goes in the middle and takes up most of the bed. I just sleep on the side.

“It hasn’t really affected the romance. You learn to adapt and change. Obviously it’s different, but it’s still there and we do still make time for each other. Just not as much.”

Of course, what works for one child might not work for another, so it’s important to respond to your youngster and adapt your style accordingly.

Meet the new fans of ‘gentle parenting’ who ask their kids permission to touch them and never punish them when they’re naughty.

Ever wondered what your parenting style is? Find out with our quiz.

What is helicopter parenting, where does the term come from and how has it been linked to children’s behaviour?

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Proof That Senegalese Twists Are the Protective Style You Need to Try This Summer

Proof That Senegalese Twists Are the Protective Style You Need to Try This Summer

When it comes to low-maintenance hairstyles that allow you to keep the manipulation of your natural hair at a minimum, box braids aren’t the only protective style that comes in handy. Senegalese twists — or, as some like to call them, rope twists — are just as dependable whenever you’re looking to throw your hair up into a style that cuts the time you spend getting ready in half for a few weeks, and they’re also just as versatile.

Senegalese twists look a lot like Marley twists, though instead of featuring Marley braiding hair, these are usually installed using the same type of Kanekalon hair that’s used for box braids. In case you’re looking for some protective style inspiration, read ahead to see some of our favorite takes on the style.

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Jessica Simpson Shows Off Her Toned Abs and Legs in Two-Piece Activewear Set from Her New Line

Jessica Simpson is making sure to carve out some time for herself while social distancing with her husband Eric Johnson and their three children, daughters Maxwell Drew, 8, and Birdie Mae, 14 months, and son Ace Knute, 7.

The fashion industry mogul, singer and New York Times best-selling author of the recent memoir Open Book, shared an empowering mirror selfie on Instagram Tuesday, showing off her fit frame and a cute new two-piece workout set from her Jessica Simpson Collection activewear line.

"Woke up before all 3 kiddos to get my steps in and spend time with me, myself, and I," Simpson, 39, captioned the sexy photo, adding, "Move move move for your own mental health."

Her followers flooded the comments section with support and praise for Simpson, who has been very open about the struggles she's endured ⁠— and industry pressure she felt ⁠— while learning to embrace her body.

"Oh I’m sorry Hi LEGS!! 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥," Chef Gaby Dalkin, wrote.

"Ok hottie!! 🔥🔥," Simpson's colorist Rita Hazan shared, with the star's stylist Nicole Chavez writing, "Looking good girl ⚡️🖤⚡️🖤."

A lot of Simpson's fans also wanted to know where they could buy her trendy tie-dye workout set, so she made sure to include a swipe up link. The pieces are Simpson's own designs from Jessica Simpson Collection's latest activewear launch. The seamless bike shorts, $45, and matching sports bra, $40, are still available, but selling out fast thanks to Simpson's sexy selfie.

In her memoir Open Book, Simpson opens up about the body expectations that plagued her career, referring to the famed 2005 Daisy Duke shorts from her scene-stealing role in Dukes of Hazzard as creating "a gold standard Jessica, the 'before' for every 'is she fat or is she thin' story for the rest of my career."

Scrutiny over her body would follow her through three pregnancies and the infamous "mom jeans" moment in 2009 that left people calling her "fat" at a size 4.

Simpson told PEOPLE in a recent cover story that early on in her career she turned to things like diet pills because of the pressure she felt to be thin when starting out at 17 when she got a record deal.

"I thought it was about my voice. I didn't know that it was going to end up being about how I looked in a dress," she said. "It's heartbreaking and I mean, I punished myself for it. I took diet pills. I heard it and I couldn’t not hear it in the back of my mind every time I was on stage, every time I walked out the door."

After the birth of her third child Birdie Mae last March, Simpson revealed that she tipped the scales at 240 pounds, and that over the course of six months she lost 100 pounds with help from her trainer Harley Pasternak.

Pasternek told PEOPLE that Simpson started making positive changes right after she gave birth by focusing on a more holistic lifestyle approach rather than jumping right into the gym.

"The difference between this and the other times was that she worked out, yes, but her transformation was more about what she did on her own time," Pasternak, who trains Simpson alongside his co-trainer Sydney Liebs, told PEOPLE last September. "She was so motivated and positive. She was saying that her body has not belonged to her for the past decade. Not in a bad way, in a positive way — her body has been designated to create life and now it’s hers again and she’s going to make it fantastic in a really enjoyable way."

RELATED: Jessica Simpson Lost 100 Lbs. After Having a ‘Hard Time Not Feeling Like Herself’ Post-Baby

He explained that Simpson took on five daily tasks — getting in her steps, unplugging from technology for an hour, getting sleep, eating healthfully and exercising — to help reach hear goal.

Simpson loves walking and started with 6,000 steps a day for the first few weeks, and then slowly built back up to her usual 12,000.

"I never work with scales," Pasternak said. "My work with her is more about the habits she’s created and kept up. Every night before she goes to bed she sends an email showing that she hit all five tasks, so she’ll go to bed feeling successful. She’s hit her step goal, she’s eaten well, she’s balanced her responsibilities — so she can go to bed with a sense of fulfillment, and that’s everything. And as a byproduct of doing these habits, she lost 100 lbs."

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I Tried This Savage x Fenty Cami, and It's the Softest Thing That's Ever Touched My Skin

I Tried This Savage x Fenty Cami, and It’s the Softest Thing That’s Ever Touched My Skin

If Rihanna makes it, I’m probably buying it. I’m a shopping editor, so I’m using that as my excuse to spend my paychecks on her must haves. I am particularly a big fan of her lingerie line, Savage x Fenty — it’s equal parts sexy and functional. Plus, I love that the brand celebrates confidence and inclusivity. I’ve bought a few bras from the site, but I recently found my new obsession on the brand’s Amazon page; it offers a selection of pieces there, too.

I’m not exaggerating when I say that this Savage x Fenty Jersey Cami ($34) is the softest, slinkiest thing I’ve ever put on my body. It feels like loungewear, but it’s cute enough to dress up for beyond the couch. My favorite part? The rose gold hardware on the adjustable straps. It gives the cami a luxe vibe.

On top of being a great buy for yourself, part of the proceeds from this tank top support CLF’s education and emergency response work around the world. So this summer essential is totally worthy of your attention. Read on to shop my favorite find, and order one for yourself before it sells out.

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This 20-Minute Tabata Workout Is WAY Better Than An Hour Of Running

What if I told you a 20-minute workout could give you better results than 60 minutes on the treadmill? Welcome to Tabata training! By now, you’ve probably heard the word “Tabata,” but you might not really know what that means. Tabata is a form of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) that’s been proven to torch serious calories quickly.

In a Tabata workout, each round lasts four minutes. It requires 20 seconds of all out intensity, followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated eight times. And when I say “all out,” I mean ALL OUT. We’re talking about 100-percent max effort for every burpee, tuck jump, and mountain climber. It’s worth pushing yourself though, because that’s how you get such a stellar workout in such a short amount of time. Plus, it’s not for long—you can do anything for 20 seconds.

Now that you’re ready to kick your workout into high gear, these Tabata exercises will boost your metabolism and get you fitter faster.

Time: 20 minutes

Equipment: Resistance band

Good for: Total body

Instructions: Choose five moves below. Do each move for 20 seconds at maximum effort, resting for 10 seconds in between. Repeat for a total of eight rounds. Once you’ve completed all rounds of one Tabata exercise, rest for one minute, then continue to the next move.

1. High Knees

How to: Start standing. Run in place, driving knees towards chest. Use arms and try and go as fast as you can (note: the trainer demo-ing this exercise is moving slowly to exhibit proper form). Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

2. Sprawl

How to: Start in a plank position, then jump feet towards hands, dropping butt below knees and lifting torso up and raising hands to chest level. Jump feet back to plank position. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

3. Skaters

How to: Start standing, feet hip-distance apart. Jump to the right, landing on right foot and bringing your left leg behind body. Jump to the left, landing on left foot and bringing right foot behind body. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

4. Knee Tuck To Pushup

How to: Start in a plank position. Jump knees between hands (or place sliders under feet, and pull knees forward in line with hands). Return feet to plank position. Slowly bend elbows and lower into a pushup. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

5. Tuck Jumps

How to: Start standing. Jump straight up, tucking knees to your chest. Land softly, and immediately repeat that move. That’s one rep. Complete 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute.

6. Mountain Climbers

How to: Start in a plank position. Drive your knees toward chest, one at a time, as quick as you can. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

7. Squat Jump

How to: Start in a standing position with feet shoulder width apart, toes pointed forward, and weight in heels. Lower down into a squat, and then drive through heels to reverse movement and jump up as high as possible. Land softly back into the squat position. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

8. Burpees

How to: Start standing. Squat down to plant palms on mat and jump feet back into a plank position. Perform a push-up, then jump feet toward hands. Push down through heels to rise up and jump into the air, bringing hands over head. Land softly back on mat. That’s one rep. Complete as many reps as possible in 20 seconds at maximum effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest. Repeat eight times. Rest for one minute then continue on to the next move.

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How One of TV's Busiest Anchormen Stays in Shape

CRAIG MELVIN ISN’T sure how much energy he has left. The host of NBC’s Today is breathing heavily midway through his fifth set of sprint intervals on a treadmill with fittingly breathtaking views at the eighth-floor company gym at New York’s iconic Rockefeller Center.

Melvin’s going 30 seconds on and 30 seconds off, peaking at a nine-mile-per-hour pace. Leaning forward, he stomps his tree-trunk legs down even harder on the spinning belt. When time’s up, he plows onward for ten more seconds. “Just wanted to give you a bit more,” he says. It’s 3:30 P.M., but technically he’s been up and after it since well before dawn. Since he’s been working for nearly 12 hours, he could be forgiven for slow-rolling a bit. But that’s not him. “This,” he adds, “is the final challenge of my workday.”

Three times a week, Melvin makes that challenge count, putting himself through an hour-long swole session that blends a cardio warmup with bro-style weightlifting. Sometimes he does it at 30 Rock; other days he hits the elliptical and lifts at his home gym in suburban Connecticut. (He relied on that home gym in March, when he was quarantined due to COVID-19, running and biking and doing pushups with his children on his back.)

No matter the location, his workout comes at the tail end of a grind that starts while most of the nation is deep asleep.

Giacomo Fortunato

As the anchor of both Today, which airs from 7:00 to 11:00 every morning, and MSNBC Live, which runs from 11:00 to noon, Melvin rolls out of bed at 3:45 A.M. He’s in Manhattan by 5:15, prepping for the shows and going over last-minute scripts, and then he straps in for five hours of continuous airtime. The 40-year-old says he’s at his most megawatt when he cohosts the third hour. Then he gets a quick breather before that hour of Live.

Giacomo Fortunato

By early afternoon, Melvin’s extra-early-bird schedule leaves him zapped, but after two decades in front of the camera, he’s discovered that that’s precisely when you need to give a little more. It’s certainly healthier than the alternative he once embraced at Wofford College, where he built his diet around French fries and beer. By the time he graduted in 2001 and started as an anchor and reporter at WIS in Columbia, South Carolina, his waistline had ballooned.

Melvin sought out a trainer, who helped him shed the extra pounds by introducing him to a thing called running. “I enjoy the fellowship of food, drink, and merriment,” he says. He has learned to find a healthy balance, which keeps him at a solid 210 pounds. Being on TV has plenty of looks-based pressures, but his objective remains basic. “I have to stay reasonably fit,” he says.

The workout stays reasonable, too. There are no lung-crushing, CrossFit-style WODs. After doing stretches and light ab work, Melvin hits the weights. He starts with 3 sets of walking lunges, resting 30 seconds between each. Then it’s on to 3 sets on the leg press before he finishes with a superset of biceps curls and triceps pressdowns.

He revels in keeping things simple, offsetting the chaos of the rest of his day.“It’s nice to know exactly what’s coming next,” he says. When it’s over, his T-shirt is drenched. He’s pumped and smiling, even though there are no cameras. “That’s exactly what I wanted,” he says.

Home Work

Giacomo Fortunato

Try this speedy Melvin mobility session when you’re on the go. Do 3 sets of each move.

1. Touch-Toe Hamstring Stretch,

3 reps

2. World’s Greatest Stretch,

5 reps per side

3. Stability-Ball Dead Bug,

8 reps per side

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