Tips for Surviving Winter in New England

If you're new to New England, the prospect of freezing temperatures might make you shiver. Here are some tips for making it through winter with the least amount of frostbite:

Get a great pair of boots: Apparently there is only one brand of boots that people own in Boston: L.L. Bean. L.L. Bean offers an array of endless possibilities, with a lifetime guarantee. (They also sell cozy slippers!)

Live the layered life: It's not weird to wear long underwear, two pairs of wool socks, or two pairs of gloves/mittens, with heating pads tucked inside! There are numerous reasons to live the layered life. First, it’s not about cold getting in so much as heat getting out. If you’re freezing every time you walk outside, the odds are you’re not wearing enough clothes. Another reason to layer is that winter isn’t just about cold air: it’s also about wind, snow, and climbing out of the snowbanks. That super soft cotton hoodie you love so much works effectively as an insulator, but it’s not great in the wind. And your knit gloves are sufficient when you’re out for an autumn stroll, but if they get covered in snow when you’re climbing out of the snowbank, your hands will end up damp and freezing. That’s what layering is for: combining protection.

Bundle up in the puffiest coat you can find: When it comes to goose down coats, the puffier the better. 

Invest in warm gloves that let you use your touchscreen phone: No matter the weather, you’ll always need to scroll through your Twitter feed, so go buy gloves that can be used on touchscreen phones.

Stock up on chap-stick: Chapped lips are the worst. Even if you don’t care about chapped lips, the person kissing you might.

Get infatuated with flannel: Flannel is good fabric. They make shirts out of it, they line jackets and pants with it, and they even make bed sheets out of it. Flannel is hardy, and it provides excellent insulation. 

Drink tea: Coffee is probably what you need to perk up in the morning, but why not splurge on a few different boxes of tea? At ~10 cents a serving, you can fill many a mug of delicious warmth. Celestial Seasonings’s Bengal Spice tea is particularly soothing for the soul. The cinnamon, ginger, and cloves will warm you on so many levels, and it tastes naturally sweet.

Wool socks: Once you start wearing wool socks, you will immediately regret the existence of all your cotton socks. Wool socks are softer and warmer than cotton, and they continue to keep you warm when they get wet. Wear them to work, school, and bed.

Don’t Hibernate: It’s tempting to throw on your flannel bathrobe, climb in bed, and spend the next few months watching Netflix—but actually the best thing you could do is get up and get out. This doesn’t have to mean going skiing or winter hiking or ice climbing. It might just mean grabbing a hot chocolate at your local cafe, or building a snow fort with your kids. You could even just take a walk around the neighborhood, enjoying the winter wonderland.