Right now, the Midwest and Northeast regions of the United States are enduring some of the coldest temperatures ever recorded as another polar vortex passes overhead. To give you an idea of how cold it’s been, last night the temperature in Chicago was -23° F (-30° C), which is just above record for the city’s lowest reading ever, set in January 1985. The coldest area throughout the 2019 polar vortex was International Falls, Minnesota, where the temperature dropped to -55° F (-48° C) with wind chill. This was even colder than the south pole, which was a balmy -24° F (-31° C).

Or, you could just look at this weather map from last night. The areas in purple have temperatures below zero° F.

Photo Credit: Accuweather

That’s a lot of purple.

Stats and maps are one thing, but what’s it like to actually live through such low temperatures? Luckily, people from the midwest and northeast have been sharing the effects of extreme cold on their daily lives. Unsurprisingly, it affects almost everything.

Here are 15 examples of what happens when Chicago turns into Antarctica. Let’s put it this way…don’t go outside with wet hair.


1. Antifreeze is not living up to its name.

Photo Credit: Imgur

2. Here’s what it looks like to fight a fire in -50

Photo Credit: @ABC13Elita

3. The faucets are now ice makers.

Photo Credit: @mak_savi

4. You know that booze that famously doesn’t freeze? Well…

Photo Credit: @KKrilanovichCRE

5. “The soap is frozen in my shower.”

Photo Credit: @wowmartiean

6. It’s a lot harder to charge your smartphone.

Photo Credit: @CJcued

7. The door hinges are freezing…inside the house.

Photo Credit: @ABC13Elita

8. And sometimes, it’s the entire door.

Photo Credit: @HeidiMiler

9. You can freeze noodles.

Photo Credit: @ccroucher9

10. No beard is safe.

Photo Credit: @Volus_dude

11. “After two days of freezing rain, my tire had a perfect mold.”

Photo Credit: Reddit

12. The cold is freezing the paint off some cars.

Photo Credit: Imgur

13. “My door handle was frozen this morning. It snapped off.”

Photo Credit: @kuyacoo_

14. People are going to the bathroom the same way Elsa does.

Photo Credit: @LoungeCKRM

15. But at least their toilet is still intact.

Photo Credit: @hannahtraining



h/t: Buzzfeed