Planning an event outside means you need to consider more than just whether it’s going to rain or not.
The temperature is also important since it can determine how comfortable your guests are at the outdoor event.
While 72 degrees Fahrenheit is typically regarded as the temperature most humans are comfortable at, you may feel a little unsure about 68 degrees.
It may only be a few degrees lower than 72, but it can make a difference.
Here’s what you need to know about 68 degrees and whether it’s cold or not.
Is 68 Degrees Cold?
Yes, 68 degrees is cold.
Rather, you can consider 68 degrees to be chilly.
68 degrees is on the lower end of the room temperature spectrum.
The room temperature spectrum is the small range of temperatures that scientists consider to be room temperature.
The spectrum extends from 68 degrees to 72 degrees Fahrenheit.
It’s within this range that the human body feels comfortable without needing to take clothes off or on to accommodate the temperature.
Room temperature is important because it defines what temperature our bodies can be the most efficient in.
When temperatures start to fall or rise outside of the range, then the body has to start burning energy.
When the body is cold, it burns energy to keep warm.
When the body is warm, it burns energy to stay cool.
That’s because the body has an internal temperature of 98.8 degrees Fahrenheit.
The body does everything it can to maintain that optimal temperature.
Room temperature helps the body maintain that temperature without requiring too much energy to do so.
When it comes to 68 degrees, some people may feel that it’s a little chilly, but in reality, it’s right on the edge of the room temperature spectrum.
Why Does 68 Degrees Feel Cold?
Because 68 degrees is right on the fringe of the room temperature range, some people find that it actually feels cold.
Here are a few reasons why you might find 68 degrees to be cold.
1. Acclimation To Warmer Temperatures
One of the main reasons why you might find 68 degrees cold or chilly is because you’re used to warmer temperatures.
If you live in an area that frequently sees temperatures in the eighties and above, then anything below that mark is going to feel colder to you.
That’s because your body has acclimated to hotter weather.
To survive, the body adapts to its surroundings as best it can.
For someone who lives in a climate with hot weather, their body adjusts itself to become more efficient at living in hot temperatures.
While the body can only adjust to smaller changes in temperature over time, evolution might make it so that the human body can adapt faster or more permanently.
For example, while the human body can adapt to survive in 100-degree weather and above, there’s a point where the body can no longer survive.
Given enough time, the human body might advance and adapt enough to eventually live in harsher climates, too.
However, when those changes occur rapidly, like with climate change, the body doesn’t have the time it needs to adapt and adjust over generations.
When someone from a hot climate experiences 68-degree weather, their body isn’t used to it.
It has to adapt and change to make it efficient in that weather, too.
As a result, your body feels colder.
If you’re used to living in a hot climate, then 68 degrees is going to likely feel cold to you.
Another reason that 68 degrees might feel cold is that there’s a breeze.
68 degrees on its own may feel quite comfortable.
However, when there’s a breeze in the air, then it can quickly start to chillier.
That’s because the wind usually carries with it a different temperature.
That’s why you hear about things like cold fronts or hot fronts.
It’s a passage of wind carrying a different temperature with it.
In some cases, the breeze may have a colder temperature which it’s blowing against your skin.
That can make 68 degrees feel colder since it’s bringing colder air into your space.
Another reason a breeze makes 68 degrees feel cold is because of how it interacts with your body.
When you’re warm, your body starts to sweat.
It does this to stay cool.
Air then passes over your skin and because of the sweat there, it makes you feel cooler.
It’s not unlike spraying yourself with water and then having a fan blow on your face.
On a breezy day, the air passes over your skin and makes you feel a bit chillier.
On a sunny day, 68 degrees may feel quite warm.
If it’s raining, however, then 68 degrees can feel cold.
That’s because the rain can sometimes lower the ambient temperature.
Part of this has to do with the cold front mentioned earlier.
Changes in air pressure and the movement of clouds can bring a cold front alongside the rain.
When the rain hits your body, then the cold front passes through and makes you feel even chillier.
Rain, alone, can make you feel colder because it’s soaking your skin.
Since your entire area of skin is wet, and not just a few areas normally moistened by sweat, it means your body is feeling the cool air pass over it everywhere.
This is a lot more cooling than what the body intended since it usually regulates how much you sweat.
As a result, you feel colder.
Finally, when rain passes through, it makes everything wet and humid.
Even if there is no longer humidity, there’s always some lingering moisture in the air after the rain passes.
This can make 68 degrees feel cold because the moisture in the air makes your body cold.
It also makes your body a bit more slick which, as the air passes by your skin, makes you feel chilly.
4. Skin Exposure
What you’re wearing can also determine whether 68 degrees feels cold or hot to you.
If you’re wearing a t-shirt, shorts, or a skirt, then you’re likely going to find that 68 degrees is on the chilly side.
That’s because you have a lot of skin exposed to the elements.
This means there’s more of a chance for cold breezes to pass over your skin.
When you wear clothing that covers your skin, you feel warmer.
Not only do the clothes help to insulate your body more, but it also keeps the wind from passing over your skin and cooling you.
You can easily make yourself feel warmer at 68 degrees by putting on a light jacket or changing into some pants.
68 degrees can feel cold when you’re not wearing pants or a long-sleeved shirt.
5. Light-Colored Clothing
If you’re feeling cold in 68-degree weather, then another reason may be the color of your clothes.
Whether the clothing covers your skin or not is only half of the formula.
The color of your clothing is the other half.
Light-colored clothing makes you cooler because it doesn’t absorb as much heat from the sun.
Every object that has a color, like clothes, absorbs some wavelengths of light while reflecting others.
Since light is energy, it also means that light is heat.
The more light energy that an object absorbs, the hotter the object is going to be.
Color is determined by which wavelengths of visible light an object reflects.
A black object absorbs all the wavelengths of light.
It is not reflecting any color back at our eyes, which is why it appears black.
A white object does the opposite, reflecting all the wavelengths of visible light.
So, a black t-shirt absorbs all the light wavelengths while a white t-shirt reflects all the light wavelengths.
A dark-shade t-shirt absorbs lots of light wavelengths and reflects a little.
A light-shade t-shirt absorbs little light wavelengths and reflects many.
As such, light-colored clothing takes in less energy.
This means that the object, clothing, doesn’t become hot as fast as dark-colored clothing.
Basically, light-colored clothing doesn’t insulate heat as well.
Since it isn’t insulating the heat, there’s nothing to help keep your body warm at 68 degrees.
You’ll feel colder as result, so you may find that 68 degrees is chilly when you wear light-colored clothing.
6. Sun Exposure
A final reason 68 degrees may feel cold to you is if you’re exposed to the sun or not.
Sun exposure can make you feel a lot warmer at 68 degrees.
If you’re in the shade, on the other hand, then you’re going to feel chilly.
That’s because the sun’s rays warm everything they touch.
If you’re under the sun, then you’re feeling the heat of its rays.
When you wear a hat or sit under some shade, you’re no longer exposed to the sun’s rays.
As a result, you feel a bit chillier.
Temperatures in the shade may even be lower than 68 degrees since it doesn’t have the sun heating the area.
Why Does 68 Degrees Feel Warm?
If you’re on the opposite side of the spectrum and find that 68 degrees feel warm, then you may wonder why.
Here are a few reasons why you might find 68 degrees warm.
Much like finding 68 degrees cold, if you find that it feels warm instead, then your body’s natural acclimation and adaptation could be a reason why.
If you live in an area that frequently sees lower temperatures, then 68 degrees may feel quite warm to you.
For example, if you live in an area that frequently sees temperatures in the 50s, then 68 degrees may feel quite hot to you.
That’s because your body has acclimated to colder weather.
It works most efficiently at colder temperatures because that’s what it’s used to.
When you go somewhere that’s experiencing 68-degree weather, your body is in for a shock since it isn’t used to running at that temperature.
As a warning, your body makes you feel hot to encourage you to go somewhere cooler, so it can make running your body more efficient.
Another reason that you might find 68 degrees hot is that you’re active.
Perhaps you’re running, jogging, or playing outside.
You may be playing a sport or chasing the dog down.
You may be running along the beach or taking a swim.
Whatever the reason, if you’re active, then you’re going to feel warmer in 68-degree weather.
That’s because you’re forcing your body to burn energy.
When you burn energy, your body becomes hotter.
If you’re in a warm temperature already, then your body feels even hotter since there isn’t a way to cool down.
An unfortunate reason why you might feel warm at 68 degrees is that you’re ill.
If you’re running a fever, then your body is going to feel hot.
That’s because your immune system is fighting off germs inside of it, and the best way for your body to kill germs is to raise its own temperature.
This makes it difficult, or impossible, for the germ to survive in the hostile environment.
The problem is that by raising your temperature, you also feel hot.
If you’re in 68-degree weather, then it can make you feel even hotter.
That’s because 68 degrees is right on the edge of room temperature.
It isn’t necessarily cool, so it doesn’t help cool your body down.
You’d need the temperature to be far lower than 68 degrees to actually start feeling cool.
4. Sun Exposure
Like finding 68 degrees cool, the amount of sun exposure that you receive can also make it feel a lot hotter.
If you’re standing in an area with direct sunlight and no shade, then you’re going to feel warm.
That’s because you have no protection against the sun’s rays.
Instead, you’re feeling the heat of them baking into your skin.
Since you’re exposed to the sun’s rays directly, you have no way of cooling your body down.
You might start to sweat to help cool off, but you’re still under the intense gaze of the sun.
Until you block the sun’s rays and get under some shade, 68 degrees is going to feel a lot hotter under direct sunlight.
5. Clothing Coverage And Color
The amount of clothing you’re wearing can also make 68 degrees feel warmer.
If you’re wearing pants, a long-sleeved shirt, or even a coat, then you’re going to feel warm.
That’s because clothes help to insulate the body’s heat.
The more layers that you wear or the more that it covers your skin, the better the insulation.
As such, if you’re out in 68-degree weather, then your body is going to be doing a great job of insulating the heat.
Since the clothing is covering everything, there’s no way for the sweat on your skin to feel the breeze.
As a result, your body can’t cool itself.
68 degrees suddenly feels very warm.
The color of your clothing also impacts whether you feel warm in 68 degrees or not.
If you’re wearing dark-colored clothing, then you’re going to feel warmer.
That’s because the clothes absorb more light energy which means they absorb more heat.
Add that with wearing more layers and you have a very insulated body.
68 degrees feels warm when you’re wearing lots of dark-colored layers of clothing.
A final reason why you might feel warm in 68 degrees is if there’s a high level of humidity.
Humidity is a measure of the moisture in the air.
When it’s high, it means there’s a lot of moisture in the air.
This becomes a problem because humidity makes it difficult for your body to cool itself.
Part of the process of sweat cooling you relies on evaporation, but when there is too much moisture in the air, the sweat cannot evaporate off of you.
So, if it’s humid outside, then 68 degrees can feel warmer than it actually is.
68 degrees is right on the edge of the room temperature spectrum.
Because of this and other factors, it can sometimes feel chilly to certain people.
However, some people who live in cooler climates or who are affected by additional factors might find that 68-degree weather feels hot.