Why Does Body-Temperature Air Feel Hot?

Toggle fullscreen Fullscreen button



In general, human bodies operate at about 37 degrees Celsius.

So you’d think that air that temperature would feel like nothing

not cold, not hot, just neutral.

But anyone who’s spent a sunny day at the beach

will tell you that’s not the case.

In fact, as a species, we prefer temperatures a lot lower

than our running body temp, and there are a couple good reasons why that is.

Part of the answer is that not every part of your body is the same temperature.

Your core is home to the organs

that really need to stay at that magic 37-degree temp.

But other parts of your body, like your arms or feet,

tend to be a couple of degrees cooler than your core.

And your skin is a few degrees cooler than that,

typically sitting at around 32 degrees C.

So it makes sense that you’d feel that five degree difference.

But that doesn’t fully explain why body-temperature air feels hot

after all, 32-degree air is still considered quite warm.

And that’s because we’re actually constantly running hot.

You know how your computer gets hot if it’s working really hard

and doesn’t have good airflow?