Winter Hacks!

As seen on Canada AM: Here are a few tried and tested hacks for the colder (and drier) months of winter. These work like a charm and they’re fun and frugal to try!

USING YOUR SMARTPHONE IN WINTER

Some phones (mostly Androids) now have a setting that allows you to increase the “keypad sensitivity” so you can still use your phone when you’re wearing gloves. But if your phone doesn’t have that setting there is a simple and frugal DIY project for you to try.

Buy a small spool of conductive thread and sew it into the fingertips and thumb of your existing gloves. The thread looks and behaves like conventional sewing thread with the added bonus of being conductive and is a creative way to connect various electronics to clothing.

If you want an even cheaper and more immediate DIY, strip an old insulated cable you have at home, remove the conductive thread, and reuse it. This method is a bit messy but I’ve used an old phone charger cable for this purpose and it worked great. I had to replace the thread once over the winter months.

Read more about this method HERE.

KEEPING WARM IN WINTER

One item that is worth the splurge is a programmable thermostat, specifically a *smart* thermostat like Nest. These smart thermostats help you save even more energy by learning the temperature you like and creating a customized schedule for your home. You can control them from anywhere using your phone or tablet. They look cool and give you energy reports so you can see firsthand how much you’re using and why.

It may seem old-timey but a low-tech hot water bottle can be your best friend during the cold season. Fill it with hot water and you can warm up lots of things: yourself, your bed and/or bedsheets, your favourite chair for TV watching, etc. Don’t forget you can water plants with the cooled water, or dump the water back into the kettle and heat it up again for another round of hot water bottle fun.

A frugal solution for door drafts is to lay down a roll of wrapping paper at the draft. Go that extra mile by inserting TWO empty wrapping rolls into the cut leg of pantyhose or tights. Stretch the nylon or tight to cover the rolls and tuck and secure the edges inside the tubes. Slide the contraption underneath your door with one roll stretched to either side of the door to stop drafts.

BATTLING STATIC CLING IN THE WINTER

Ack! Staticky hair…the one thing we can all hate during the dry and cold months. Try this quick frugal hack! Rub a dryer sheet over your hair and the static will instantly lessen. Or, cut slits in a dryer sheet and push it down onto your brush so it acts as a base layer. Then brush your hair as normal and enjoy static-free locks.

If you don’t buy dryer sheets you can make your own anti-static spray and it works pretty well on clothing, furniture and also hair.

1 cup water
2 Tbsp rubbing alcohol
1 Tbsp fabric softener

Put all ingredients into a spray bottle, shake well and spritz. You can read more about this recipe (and why it works) HERE.

Related: If you’re feeling blah or have a sore throat…try this soothing ancient Indian remedy!

 

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