Take the 2-minute tour ×
Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. It's 100% free, no registration required.

The title says it all. If I'm standing in the wind and I'm wet, I feel much colder than when I'm dry. This is true no matter how warm or cold the water. Why is this?

share|improve this question

1 Answer 1

up vote 6 down vote accepted

Evaporation of sweat from the skin surface has a cooling effect due to the latent heat of evaporation of water (from wikipedia). Basically, the heat is transfered from your skin to the water, the water then evaporates, taking with it a bit of the energy stored in it.

Further references here

share|improve this answer
Thank you! That was an interesting read. –  bertold Nov 4 '11 at 12:30

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.