9 Practical, Smart and Super Easy Ways to Stay Healthy and Save Money this Holi despite Coronavirus Fears
Unless you have been cut off from the rest of the world for the last 4 months, you know the entire world is gripped by Coronavirus news. There is nothing in recent memory that has gripped the entire world’s imagination and scared us all shitless than this COVID-19epidemic.
And if you are planning to play Holi this year like the previous years, you have a right to be worried. The virus is here in India and it is better that you keep in mind a few things to take care of your health before you venture out.
We will also look at ways you can save some money at the same time.
Important Note: Also, an important update and disclaimer for those of you who think COVID-19is a simple ailment and you will get immunity after you contract it, then we suggest you have a good long talk with a smart doctor. Just to put it in a brief perspective for you in case you are not going for the doctor talk: the immunity from a bout of flu is approximately one week and it may be likely that you will only get this time as an immunity period for Coronavirus also. There are now cases of people who had recovered but are getting it again. For more clarity and details, please talk to a doctor. Nothing beats expert advice from a smart doctor when it comes to fighting an epidemic.
Let’s get back to what we intend to do here in this post. Give 9Practical, Smart and Super Easy Ways to Stay Healthy and Save Money this Holi despite Coronavirus Fears
#1: DON’T PLAY HOLI THIS YEAR – INA GROUP – IN PUBLIC
Yes, we know this is a controversial statement to make but this is the best way to ensure you do not get the virus. Just don’t play Holi by going outside your home. Play with your family.
The Coronavirus is highly contagious. It not only spreads through touch but also when you touch anything that has previously been touched in the last 14 days by an infected person. The more you go outside and touch doors, handrails, etc. the more are your chances of catching the virus. Going out and playing Holi increases your chances of contracting the virus by a magnitude that is maybe beyond anyone’s comprehension.
But if you really really really (really?) have to play, then it is better that you play within a small group of friends, preferably not in public.
Don’t make a day of festivity and happiness a day you regret.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Call your friends home or go to their home, take the necessary precautions we outline below and more that you know, and play a safe Holi.
You may ask, where is the money-saving tip here? Well, smarty pants, you save money by not contracting the virus and becoming national news. Can you imagine the cost of medicines for you and your family? And, yes, it almost 100% certain your family will get the virus if you get it.
#2: WEAR A MASK
Funny, isn’t it? Imagine a group of colourful people, all wearing masks, playing Holi.
They are doing it because they are smart. Be like them. It will be fun because it is funny. And the memories that Holi celebration will create will be a time to remember for everyone.
If you have kids, send them out if they really want to play after covering their mouths and noses with masks. Talk to the parents of your kids’ friends. Voice your concerns. Talk of options. Dry Holi or wet? Where to play? What precautions can you parents take?
Remember, if you do it alone, you are a laughing stock. If you do it after talking to others, you are a very smart person who cares about everyone’s health.
Also, keep in mind how your child will react if she is the only one wearing a mask among her friends while playing Holi.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Make a mask at home if you don’t have it in stores anywhere near you. Keep more than one handy. A damp or wet mask is of no use. Here is one way to make masks at home as demonstrated and explained by a Taiwanese doctor.
Don’t let the kids play unsupervised. Make them play Dry Holi without water. And if possible, let them play in a private space.
#3: DON’T TOUCH THE FACE – YOUR OWN AND EVERYONE ELSE’S
This has been repeated more than a few times over various media. Don’t touch your face or apply Gulal to someone else’s face. Don’t let anyone apply Gulal to your face also. Contaminated hands can transfer the virus to your mouth, nose and eyes. And from there, it has access to your body and will make you sick.
Instead, it may be a good idea to simply Gulal on the arms and clothes. For elders, simply put Gulal on their feet. Many societies and people do that and it is a good and respectful practice to emulate.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Instead of applying Gulal on the face, try sprinkling some on your friend’s head or throwing some into the air over them. The second one works well if both of you are in an open space.
Try to make a game out of it with enough photo opportunities. Gather a few of your friends, grab 1 colour in each hand and get someone to click photos. Now throw the colour into the air and let the shutters go wild. You will get photos that are worthy of news and photo magazines.
#4: PLAY IN THE SUN
Don’t play Holi indoors where it is cooler, instead go out into the sun and play. The reason is simple. You are more likely to get sick playing Holi in a cool or damp indoor location rather than in a hotter sunny area.
A myth-busting or cautionary fact here: there are some reports in the media that the Coronavirus will not survive temperatures over 30 degrees centigrade. But as of now, scientists are not sure how the virus will react to the higher temperatures. So, don’t expect them to be wiped off in the heat of Indian summers. In cases like we are seeing now, it is better to be safe than sorry.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Don’t stay out in the sun for too long. You will get sunburnt. You can apply sunscreens but its ability to stop colours from reaching under your skin is questionable. See point 6 for a better way to protect your skin from colours.
#5: PLAY DRY HOLI
We have touched upon this somewhat in the preceding paragraphs. Dry Holi causes fewer problems than wet Holi. Most of the skin allergies you hear about or get after Holi are because the colours have seeped into your skin. Even if one argues that wet or dry Holi does not have much of a difference in causing COVID-19 infections, it is a known fact that you catch cold more easily when you are unwell. And wet Holi with bad colours can make you very unwell.
Also, something that we always forget. You have no idea how the colours you or someone else is putting on your face and body were created or where they came from. You may have a colour manufacturer saying that it is safe or green, but you do not have any comparison guide or even test results to gauge how safe. Mixing unsafe colours with water or oil and applying it is certain to cause more problems than a simple sprinkle of the powder we mentioned in the tip under #3 above.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Use homemade colours. There are enough videos and website pages devoted to making homemade colours for Holi. They are cheaper (in the long run) as your health is not likely to suffer because of them.
#6: APPLY VASELINE OR SOME OTHER BRAND’S PETROLEUM JELLY ON YOUR SKIN
This is more of a smart money and time-saving tip but has health benefits that you will find out.
Vaseline petroleum jelly is a non-permeable product that sits on your skin and protects it from outside weather. Here is what the Vaseline website says:
“Vaseline® Jelly works by creating a sealing barrier between cells in dry or damaged skin which locks in moisture and speeds up your skin’s natural recovery process, helping it to heal from within. Its occlusive function allows it to protect dry skin, cracked skin, minor cuts, scraps, and burns. It also helps to reduce the appearance of fine, dry lines. Vaseline® Jelly can also be used to protect your skin and lips against dryness and chapping.”
What this means for you this Holi is that if you apply it and then play with colours, you will not need half an hour or even an hour of scrubbing afterwards to take off the colours. You will likely need 2 rounds of normal soaping and some brisk scrubbing before all colour washes off. This will take at most 10 minutes from start to finish unless you want to have a good soak.
The jelly helps you take care of your health as it does not let the colours soak into your skin.
#7: APPLY VASELINE OR SOME OTHER BRAND’S POMADE ON YOUR HAIR
Same reason as above. If you don’t get pomade, apply the regular Vaseline petroleum jelly. Some people prefer to use oil which in most cases works as well.
The Health and Money Saving Tip: Do ensure that the Petroleum jelly covers your scalp. This will make it easier to wash off and save considerable money from having to sit for hours at a hairdresser’s.
#8: PUT SOME PLASTIC ON YOUR CAR SEATS BEFORE YOU USE IT FOR HOLI
If you take your car out during Holi, you know how difficult it can be to get the stains out. A smart trick is to buy some plastic seat covers and larger mats that cover the floor from end-to-end. Having some plastic on the seat covers will ensure the car stays clean and all you need to do to get it back into pristine shape is to remove the covers.
For the dashboard and other areas like armrests and handles, it may be good to apply a coat of oil on them so they act as a barrier between any accidental colour transfer from clothes or arms/hands to the car. Washing it off later with a cleaning fluid is a breeze.
The Money Saving Tip: If youdon’t get disposable plastic seat covers nearby or get only large wholesale packs, buy a roll of plastic sheet or cling film that you can simply put on top of the seats. Use some wide cello tape to tape and fashion the seat covers. You can also talk to your car service centre and ask if they canspare plastic seat covers they use during care servicing.
For floor mats, use newspapers instead of buying bigger mats that you may not use later.
#9: DON’T DRINK AND DRIVE
Despite what everyone says, people tendto get caught up in the festive spirit and get behind the wheel after a drink or two. Most people who do so have a firm belief that they can drive even after they have had a few. The sad truth is they cannot. No one can.
Drunk driving is dangerous for everyone and will create a large hole in your wallet. The Police know that people do stupid things at the heat of the moment during festivals and remain prepared to control the menace. News media reports that there are more challans and penal actions during Holi and other festive occasions than regular days. Moreover, if you remember, the penal fees were raised quite considerably a few months back.
The Money Saving Tip: Quite simple really: Don’t drink and drive.