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Cooling vest???

Discussion in 'Lifestyle Management' started by Sacajawea, Jun 3, 2010.

  1. Sacajawea

    Sacajawea slightly bedraggled

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    Does anyone here own or use a cooling vest? I am getting one and have chosen a model made by ArcticHeat. I live in a very humid climate and can't tolerate the heat at all. I can't wait to get it!

    Any feedback/experiences would be appreciated. This one is lightweight, made with environment-friendly material, non toxic and doesn't cover the kidney area. I'm waiting to hear back from them regarding their sizes since I'm not sure I'm measuring correctly.

    Thanks,
    SJ

    http://www.arcticheatusa.com/cooling_products.html
  2. Sean

    Sean Senior Member

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    I live in the steamy tropics. I don't have a commercial product like the one you are looking at so can't comment on that specifically. But I do have an old thick denim jacket that I cut the sleeves off and soak in water, run in the washing machine on spin for about 15 seconds to get the excess water out, and then wear, with a fan pointing at me. Works very well at relieving heat stress, and is cheaper than one of those commercial versions. But it does require re-wetting every hour or so.

    At least that is how I used to do it. Now I have air-con. :cool:
  3. caledonia

    caledonia

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    Sounds interesting. I tried a cooling vest made for people with MS and you put ice packs in it. It felt really strange and actually made me feel worse.

    Now I use a neck band which sounds similar to the cooling band Artic Heat sells. You can buy them all over the net for a couple bucks or even make your own if your handy. However, I think it would be a bit much to try and make a vest.

    The crystals are the same thing they use in soil to retain moisture. You can buy the crystals at a garden store.

    Let us know how it works.

    ps. heat/humidity intolerance is a symptom of adrenal fatigue, so if you can work on your adrenals, it will help the overall problem.
  4. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

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    Hi

    I have been thinking along these lines for years. I am very interested in people's experiences. I have tried wet and even wet frozen cloths and a fan.
  5. BEG

    BEG Senior Member

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    Thanks, Sacajawea, for the link. Please let us know how you like it. I've been toying with the idea for years.

    Several good ideas have been mentioned on how to stay cool, very innovative, the one about the denim jacket. I bought a couple of plastic bottles at Walmart complete with little fans. Filled with ice and water and sprayed about the face and neck, they can keep one somewhat cool. I live in the semi-tropics, and we've had a run of rain, high temperatures and high humidity.
  6. Tammie

    Tammie Senior Member

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    I, too, have been seriously thinking about something like this, but the cost is quite prohibitive.......still, I have passed out many times simply from overheating & that is obviously not the safest thing, esp when driving, so I am really interested in knowing how well these work

    have looked at a few varieties....hard to know which to go with if I do try them, how long they will stay cold, how well they will fit, and how comfortable they will be (clothes tend to irritate my skin quite easily....I know they don't sit directly on the skin, but I might wear them with a tank top, and even if not, the potential for rubbing and irritation is still there).....wish there was a way to get them other than online
  7. BEG

    BEG Senior Member

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    Here is the link for the cool vest site I've been looking at for years. It was the cost for me, too, which was prohibitive, and the length of time to get it made. That may have changed, but I just didn't think of it in the winter months.

    http://www.coolsport.net/index2.html
  8. Sacajawea

    Sacajawea slightly bedraggled

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    Hi All, thanks for the replies! The wet denim jacket in front of a fan, yes, I've done that myself! But I have air conditioning in my house (it does a poor job these days) and none in my van.

    Anyway, I got the vest yesterday. I was so excited I could hardly get the package opened. Unfortunately, the vest comes in a vinyl bag, its carrying case that was so loaded with chemical odors I instantly got a headache and light headed. So I had to air the vest out for a bit (and put the storage bag outside to outgas) before I could try it on. It's made of superb materials and very light. It's half the weight of the one advertised on coolsport, BG (I looked at that site and liked the model, except the weight of it and the site hadn't been updated since 2008). At that point this one had already been ordered anyway.

    So the other bad news for now is that I had to go by my chest size to order. I have a rather large chest, and couldn't believe the size I had to order. Sure enough, it fits across the chest all right but is very big in other areas, especially arm holes and the shoulders. I imagine they don't take women into consideration-- I noticed that no matter where I looked, they are all the same type unless you get one made custom. One site had ladies' versions but it only meant in the style/color, not over all design.

    I am thrilled with it. I haven't activated it, but that's because I'm still debating whether or not to have it altered, or to send it back and get a smaller size. It needs to fit snug against the body. The gel is part of the vest, it's not removable, which I like. I won't activate it for now (either way, the smell from being stored in plastic would prevent me from wearing it) and get a few opinions from some friends. It does stretch a bit.

    Alex, I noticed this company has a lot of endorsements and is the official vest for many sport teams in Australia (wonder why, is it hot there, lol??) as well as around the world. It's great for MS as well, and so I'm excited that it will be a good thing for me. I know what you mean, Tammie-- I have passed out as well.

    Caldonia, I tried another one on a few years ago and the weight alone was too much for me. I'll let you guys know how well it works once it's activated (until it's activated the vest will not get cold). Oh, this vest can also be heated to help the body in winter.

    SJ
  9. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

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  10. Frank

    Frank Senior Member

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    i can't stand heat at all. ...
  11. Tammie

    Tammie Senior Member

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    Sacajawea.....any update on your vest?

    I really need to get one soon, and I was planning to get one from cool sports (I think that's the name)

    .... emailed them 2 times to try to get a couple of questions answered and they have not bothered replying, so I snet them one last email telling them that they are going to be losing my business if they can't bother to answer my questions (the questions are re sizing, materials, and return/exchange policy, so things I need to know before ordering and thigns they should have no problem answering)

    I also told them that I will be letting other patietns know about their complete disinterest in satisfying their customers if they do not respond.....seriously, what terrible customer service - seems like they don't actually want to sell anything

    so, anyway, I am really bummed, bc I think they would work the best of the different types, but given how very broke I am, no way am I going to risk spending that kind of money on something w/o knowing if it will work and/or if I can return/exchange it if not

    so now the summer is getting hotter and I am getting really deperate and if they do not answer by the middle of next week I will be ordering from someone else

    so I would really love to know how yours is working
  12. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    I've used the arctic heat cool vest for a couple years--it is in my freezer right now and I used it every time I go out. If I am going to be out for a while I take a cooler bag with ice-bricks with me and when I go into a store or wherever, pop my vest in to keep cool. Or, if I am visiting someplace with a fridge I pop it in the freezer. It saves me!

    Tip: I dealt with the parent company in Australia. They were great and give a 20% medical discount. The MS people got that in place, but I talked to a rep there and they gave it to me too. It came in a week and with the exchange rate, cost less than getting it in the US. I also had problems when I tried to talk to the US people. There is a separate website for the Australian company.

    I couldn't manage summers without it.

    Sushi
  13. Tammie

    Tammie Senior Member

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    sushi, thanks for the input.....I will definitely look at the Australian site rt away
  14. Tammie

    Tammie Senior Member

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    well, I looked at the aussie site and found out that their vests are made with wool, which I am extremely allergic to.......bummer

    aside from arctic heat and cool sport does anyone know of any other cooling vests? I'm seriously getting desperate.....risking passing out in the car is obviously not an option, but not being able to drive at all is also not an option (I do very little driving, but I need to be able to do some to get groceries, for instance)

    I may just have to try the towel things and/or the neck wrap or something, but the vest really sounds like it would work best by far
  15. kerrilyn

    kerrilyn Senior Member

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    Tammie, I noticed a thread about cooling vests on the Dinet forum. People mentioned coolvest.com and www.arcticheatusa.com, Coolsport was talked about more often.

    I'd like to get one too, but most seem to weigh 4 lbs, I think. I find I get easily fatigued carrying any added weight, so I've hesitated, but need so help with the heat. Do they seem heavy, or the pros out way that?
  16. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    Tammie,

    It is made of wool, but it is some special type that is nothing like any wool I have ever seen or felt. If I had to guess (and didn't know it was wool) I would have thought it was cotton. I think they will let you return it if it doesn't work for you. I also got a sort-of sweat band thing that I put around my neck or forehead if it is really hot.

    And Kerrilyn, the light weight of the arctic heat vest is one of the reasons I got it. And, it looks almost "normal!" The only downside of this one is that it only stays frozen for about an hour, though it is cool for much longer. Some of the heavier ones stay frozen longer. The arctic heat vest was originally made for sports--so they wanted it to be light-weight.

    Sushi

    And
  17. Sacajawea

    Sacajawea slightly bedraggled

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    Hi All,
    I didn't get to return the vest until this week so hopefully I'll have it by next week. I had trouble getting a correct size to order, and the lady (Nancy) wanted me to go down "one" size...the thing was so big on me! But it matched my chest measurement. So a good friend who weighs @ 60 lbs more than me tried it on and it FIT her--perfect in the armholes, everywhere...when I saw it on her I knew I needed a smaller size. A dear friend bought this for me and she was getting frustrated as well at the run-around regarding the size and she called herself and demanded to talk w/ the owner...he responded and told me to go down three sizes. I had given her my body weight, height, chest size, CUP size...so if this wasn't such a wonderful vest I'd have thrown it back at them based on the service so far. I had a further delay in sending it back because they didn't give me a return number. So it was mailed Wednesday.

    I talked to my doctor (she's thrilled that I am getting one) and she said my insurance would probably not cover it but we could try to run it through. They normally don't cover the on the go vests.

    Tammie, the arctic wool is NOT your thought of wool...it's amazing. I wondered myself if it's not just a term because the material is unlike any wool, it's a cottony-lycra like feel. I have MCS and many many allergies so that was a concern but it's not typical wool, if it's even really wool (I'll find out).

    Sushi, thank you so much for your experience w/ the vest...I was so happy to see the reply but couldn't respond till now, lol...I've done so much research and I think the main reasons I like this one over the others is the design and it is very light. How long have you had yours? I was told it can be handwashed in oxi-clean. I didn't activate it, of course (that voids being able to return it) but having it shipped in the vinyl zip bag made it difficult to try it out. I'm glad I decided to ask my friend to try it on rather than try to go to the extent of getting it altered.

    I love love love the design-- it reminds me of a high quality swimsuit material and looks nice. I had no idea there was a parent company or I would've tried them out!

    Tammie, I hope you hear back from that other company-- I saw a phone number on that coolsport website, perhaps you could call them. I like that vest too but it would be too heavy for me and I wasn't thrilled with the velcro parts. I sure wish I had mine right this minute! It's been "Miami" hot here! I have to drive in a few minutes to a friend's house to let her dogs out and wait for my kids who went to a grad party with them...and I have no air in my van so I had to wait for the sun to go down a bit and I just hope the dogs won't hold that against me, lol!

    Tammie, are you in a humid state? I found a good one that is priced well but it's for arid climates. I'm thinking I've read before that you're in the midwest as well?
  18. Sushi

    Sushi Moderator and Senior Member Albuquerque

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    Hi Sacajawea,

    I've had mine 3 or 4 years and it is still fine. And yes, you can hand wash it. Only thing to watch out for is letting it soak in water for too long as the gel stuff can expand too much and weaken the seams. So time it when you "activate it." To refresh it after using it for a couple of weeks, you just soak it again for about 3 minutes then spin it in the washer to get out excess water. I let it dry before freezing it cause if you don't you can get ice on the surface.

    The fit is important and you are right the guidelines are wrong. I actually phoned Australia and spoke to a very nice woman and she guided to to a good fit. It needs to fit tightly so that the vest is in full contact with your body. If I am going for a walk outdoors, I just wear a bra underneath so it can touch my skin.

    Good luck! I just put mine on simply to check the mail--I live in Florida and the heat is intense.

    Sushi
  19. Sallysblooms

    Sallysblooms P.O.T.S. now SO MUCH BETTER!

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    Where did you get your vest, Sacajawea?
  20. Sacajawea

    Sacajawea slightly bedraggled

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    Hi Sallie, I edited this since I didn't see your reply. I got mine from Arctic Heat USA. I called to talk to someone about the measurement issue and other than her not helping me much, I love the product itself. She's kind of irritated at both myself and the friend who purchased it. I'm hoping for a good enough fit and not have to return it again.
    http://arcticheatusa.com/



    http://www.facebook.com/l.php?u=http%3A%2F%2Farcticheatusa.com%2F&h=4c7199UcsBlEOuJDEOQW_QUOJdw


    _______________________________________________________________--

    Tammie, this is another site (not where I got mine)



    http://www.bodycooler.com/cooling-vest-multiple-sclerosis-products.htm#ladiescoolingvest


    Not sure if I inserted that correctly and I have to go for now...but this is another site that I looked at as well. This one looks like it's for over the clothes only and not a snug fit.

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