How to prevent frostbite and stay warm in Edinburgh this winter

In the words of Ned Stark, “winter is coming”

We’ve all been there. Sitting at your desk at 3pm in your student flat, absolutely freezing despite wearing multiple layers, a dressing gown, slippers, AND clutching a hot water bottle. And once you venture across The Meadows for your next day 9am seminar, things only get worse. The only respite from the cold is your daily five minute hot shower to cut electricity costs.

Honestly, what is a student to do in these conditions?

Thermal layers

Well first things first, it turns out our mums were right. Layers really do make a difference, especially thermal ones.

The best places for inexpensive thermal layers are M&S and Uniqlo, with a pair of unbelievably cosy thermal leggings costing me £12 from M&S. If you don’t want to buy anything thermal just yet, then a couple of pairs of tights can also do the job very effectively under jeans. This is without a doubt my most responsible purchase ever.

Thermal layers can be worn standalone, or for maximum heat effectiveness layered underneath your normal jeans, trousers, tops, and jumpers!

Socks, slippers, and dressing gowns

If you’re trying to stay warm, then please keep your ears and feet warm too.

Get yourself some fuzzy socks from Primark, warm slippers, and you’ll be warming up in no time! Whilst a dressing gown is optional, they seemingly contain magical warming properties.


Yeah, I sound just like your mum again, but seriously hats are the bomb.

The feeling of cold ears is awful and can give you horrible cold-related headaches. Whether you’re a beanie, pom-pom, or even an earmuff person, there’s sure to be a hat for you out there.

Plus, a bonus hack for winter if you have hair you want to keep styled, is to tie it in a low pony and tuck that inside the hat. Whilst temporarily you may look like an egg, once you get inside you can remove the hat, take out your hair tie and have a very Tresemme advert hair moment.

Step one – egg head moment

Step two – release the hair from hat and voila!

Hot water bottles and heat patches

Hot water bottles and student flats go hand in hand. For many of us, it’s the closest we will come to a bath like feeling of being enveloped in heat (unless of course like in my flat, your shower drain is blocked, resulting in a constant ankle-length paddling pool for me and my flatmate to enjoy).

However, as tempting as it is, hot water bottles aren’t exactly convenient to carry with you to the library and seminars.

Instead, we have heat patches. These handy stick-on producers of warmth can be stuck just about anywhere (and are also perfect for period cramps). As such they are undetectable, and you can walk around campus feeling smug and warm whilst every inch of your body is plastered with the patches.

And finally, leave no skin exposed

Harkening back to the Victorian period, everyone needs to cover their ankles.

I get you want to look fashionable but I know you’re freezing in those cropped ankle length jeans. Solution? Either wear longer socks, longer boots, or longer trousers and problem fixed!

Still have spots of exposed skin, ears, head, fingers? Simply put some form of warm covering over them and you should be a lot warmer!

At the end of the day, I know in that in winter I spend most of my time looking like a sleeping bag wearing egg head, but honestly, at least I’m a toasty sleeping bag wearing egg head.

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