How to Stay Warm in a Cold Office

Young woman in glasses cupping a mug and wearing a warm wrap around her shoulders at desk in cold office

The battle over the office thermostat is an age-old dilemma. While more women than men lament that the office is too cold, it’s actually the number one complaint among all office workers in numerous workplace polls. Unfortunately, the solution offered by the rest of the warm-blooded world is simply to “put on a sweater.” And yet, despite a workplace wardrobe of mostly wool and cashmere, it’s still not enough.

If you’re one of those workers suffering from frostbite in a frigid office, here are some cozy and professional ways to get warm without wearing your parka at your computer.

Throw Blankets, Wraps & Scarves

If your legs tend to get cold, leave a throw blanket draped over the back of your chair and pull it over your lap whenever you need a little extra warmth. For upper body chills, keep a neutral colored wrap at your desk, or a zip-up fleece or hoodie for the guys. Even a scarf can do the trick. While it might not seem like much, simply covering the exposed skin around your neck can actually help trick your body into feeling warmer.  

Hot Beverages

Another way to trick your body into believing it’s warm is to sip a hot drink. While a cup of cocoa, tea or coffee won’t actually raise your internal body temperature, it does have the placebo effect. Your mouth is one of the most sensitive parts of your body, so the sensation of hot liquid actually gives you the illusion that you’re heating up. For an added bonus, pick up a mug warmer for your desk and save yourself the chilly walk to the microwave.

Heated Mouse & Fingerless Gloves

It’s hard to get your work done when you’re sitting on your hands. And typing in gloves is downright impossible. But fingerless gloves, now that’s genius. Splurge on a heated pair that plug into your computer’s USB port, or pick up a heated mouse to keep your fingers toasty while you’re clicking and scrolling.

Heated Foot Rest

Whether it’s poor circulation or a drafty floor, it’s not uncommon for your feet to be the first thing to get cold while sitting at your desk. You could wear thick wool socks and invest in a lifetime supply of toe warmers, but a heated foot rest is a really smart alternative. Plus, it’ll make your work station more ergonomic.

Space Heaters

When all else fails, get yourself a space heater. Just check with your office manager first to make sure personal heaters are allowed. Look for models that give off plenty of heat, but are compact, quiet and  come with safety features, such as an automatic shut-off. And if a space heater is a no-go, a heated seat cushion for your desk chair can also provide all-over warmth.

More Winter Tips for the Office

From how to avoid the office cold to how to beat the winter blues, we’ve got more tips and tricks to help you stay happy, healthy and productive at work this winter.

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