Do Your Feet or Hands Suffer with the Cold?
Some of you may not have a problem with cold feet and hands, but I’m guessing there are many others of you out there who have the same challenge I have. When it’s cold or even simply chilly out, I struggle to keep my hands and feet warm. And I’m not talking about the kind of warmth that’s simply for comfort, I’m talking about the fact my fingers or toes will turn white from lack of circulation and go numb. It’s not something I think I should ignore and just tough it out. It’s purely a guess, but I think some of my problems stem from childhood—when my toes and fingers got too cold while playing outside during winter—maybe even some frostbite. But whatever the cause, they haven’t gotten better over the years.
There is Help!
I decided to share some of the products I’ve discovered that help me keep my digits warm and healthy during the cold or chilly weather season.
When I’m at home and relaxing in the evenings, I wear extra warm socks (double layer of fluffy material) and warm sheepskin-lined house slippers. But once in a while my toes become extremely cold, for unknown reasons, and need extra help to get the circulation moving once again. That’s when I turn to these booties—which were a gift from my thoughtful hubby. I heat the Bed Buddy Foot Warmers for a minute or so in the microwave and then slip them onto my feet for toasty comfort. These never fail to warm my toes to a healthy pink again, and then I can go back to wearing my thick, warm socks and house slippers in comfort.
The booties come in handy when I’m at home. But when we’re out camping away from electricity and modern technology, I need different resources on hand to use. For years I’ve kept a supply of the Heat Factory hand and foot warmers packed with our equipment. These have been used for years by hunters and fishermen, or anyone spending lots of time out of doors in the cold. For those of you who are not familiar with these, here is the product description from the manufacturer: The Heat Factory warmer is a soft, lightweight pouch containing a biodegradable mixture of iron powder, charcoal, salt, and vermiculite. When exposed to the air, an oxidation process takes place that generates heat. Unopened the Heat Factory Warmers have a shelf life of three years or more. They are made in San Diego. I like to buy local-made products and at the time we lived in Southern California. I found these to be really handy. Simply open the plastic wrap, give them a couple shakes to activate and you have warmth for hours!
Since we’ve moved to the PNW, hubby recently found another brand of warmers at Costco. He bought a box of each at a low price that made each warmer pack priced at under $1 each. I gave them a try and discovered they work just fine. So now we know of two reliable brands.
Slip the hand warmers in your mittens or pockets to keep your hands warm when outside in the cold. I’ve used the foot warmers in my sleeping bag, for nights when the temps dipped to freezing, or below. They also work great to warm your hiking boots in the morning. Just stick one in the toe of each boot while you are dressing and by the time you are ready to slip on your boots the cold has been chased away. Your toes will appreciate it.
The Little Hotties Toe Warmers were the real bargain though. This brand has an adhesive side that allows you to stick them to your socks! They stay in place inside your boots or shoes (no slipping around) and keep your toes toasty warm, even in freezing weather. I’ve even used them in my shoes when I know I’m going to be outside shopping in cold, damp weather. So far I’ve had great success with them. They keep my toes warm for hours.
Besides keeping these on hand for working outside, or stashed in the camping equipment for our trips, I’ve added some packs to our Emergency Get Back Home Bags that we keep in each of our vehicles. If you’re ever stranded for hours in the cold, how wonderful would it be to have a way to keep your feet and hands warm until help arrived? And they would definitely come in handy during a prolonged power outage!