How to survive first coldest and darkest winter in Finland

I won’t take you shopping today. Winter is coming, so we need to be prepared to survive it. One fun fact for someone from Southeast Asia like me is that this is the first time I have ever seen snow. My preparation was a bit difficult at times, but overall I’m getting used to it.

Gloves, scarves, and hats

Warm clothes are the obvious things you have to prepare to survive the winter. I want to highlight these things since, without them, everything else is meaningless to me. Based on real experiences, I’ll tell you the reason why.

Once I went to the supermarket, which was only about a kilometer from my house, everything was normal until I took my bag in hand to go home. I almost lost sense in my hands, and snow started to freeze on my hair and eyes. It felt like I couldn’t blink anymore. Therefore, if you buy these, I advise you not to hesitate, buying in small quantity but good quality with high insulation.

High neck winter boots

Again, it’s a chance for me to share my experience. As you know, forests cover more than 75 percent of the land area of Finland. Therefore, choosing to go the forest paths is traditional for Finns. And I turned that ordinary into the unusual by wearing a pair of low boots to walk in the woods. As a result, a lot of snow got into my shoes, and my feet froze.

Besides the height of the shoes, the material and design are also important. I recommend investing in a pair with many spikes on the shoe bottom to increase friction with the ground and prevent slipping. Likewise,  boots with a high neck and fur inside will protect you better by helping you stay warm.

Check the heater

Trust me! You will stay at home as much as possible in the winter. As it approaches, the number of hours with the sun becomes less and less, sometimes only about 6, 7 hours a day with the sun. Therefore, the heater will become your new friend. Check its performance as soon as possible and report back to the home janitor if there is any problem. You may face issues with your health if you do not have it for a few days.

Influenza Vaccination

It will be crucial if your body is sensitive to the weather and especially has some underlying diseases such as obesity, lung and respiratory diseases. Especially if you come from a Southeast Asian country like me, this preparation is considerable. 

Change bicycle wheels

For most international students when they first come to Finland, bicycles are the primary means of transportation. Even at home, you still have to go to the supermarket to buy food. The shelf life of regular food in Finland is relatively short because it is mostly preservative-free. Therefore, you won’t keep it in the fridge through the winter. Go to the car shop and ask them to choose a good pair of wheels for you, with enough spikes to increase safety. Besides, the accompanying accessories such as waterproof locks, defrost sprayers, waterproof sprays are also wise preparations.

Keep your body moisturizing

Moisturizing that I meant is both inside and outside. As someone who did not apply cosmetics regularly, I am also gradually getting used to using moisturizer for the face and body after coming to Finland. Because if your skin is not moisturized enough, it will become dry, worse, crack and peel like lips.

Finally, drink enough water for a day. It would be nice to always have a bottle of water by your side. You may not see its benefits right away, but it is continuously hydrating your body from the inside. Moreover, water helps speed up your metabolism. 

In conclusion, protecting yourself is the first thing to do when winter comes. Above are the experiences that I have gained from my practical experience as well as the sharing of local friends. I hope that it will be of help to you. Follow Edunation on the Website and other social media platforms, including Facebook and Youtube , if you want to read more articles on these topics.

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