How To Make Neck Coolers

You can make these cool tie-on neck coolers to help keep you cool while mowing, boating, visiting an amusement park, hiking or whatever you can think of. They're easy to make and great for gifts, too.

Materials needed:

Absorbent Polymer Crystals (I got them through Watersorb)


Cotton Fabric (45 inch width- one yard makes about 8 neck coolers)


Sewing machine

Fabric marking pencil

Iron and ironing board


1. Pre-wash fabric.

2. Cut fabric into 45 x 5 inch strips.

3. Fold the strips in half length-wise with the patterned side out to form a 45 x 2.5 inch strip and press with hot iron.

4. Stitch down the length of the strip 1/4 inch from the open edge back stitching at both ends to make a tube.

5. Stitch one end of the tube closed (I stitched mine at a 45 degree angle for looks).

6. Using an unsharpened pencil, knitting needle or chopstick, turn the tube right-side-out.

7. Fold the tube in half and mark the half-way point. Measure and mark points 4 inches and 8 inches on both sides of the half-way point to make 5 even marks down the length of the tube.

8. At the mark closest to the closed end of the tube, stitch across the width of the tube.

9. Pour in 1/4 tsp. of the absorbent polymer crystals making sure they all fall down to the line you've just stitched across.

10. Stitch across the width of the tube at the next mark.

11. Repeat steps 8 and 9 until you have stitched across the tube at each of the 5 marks. There will now be 4 closed pockets in the center of the tube each filled with absorbent polymer crystals.

12. Fold in the open end of the tube and stitch it closed (again, I stitched mine at a 45 degree angle).

13. Trim the thread ends and you are finished.

To use your neck cooler:

Soak in cool water for 5 to 15 minutes. Pat dry with a towel. Tie around your neck or forehead and you will stay cool for hours. Rinse with cold water before drying. Hang to dry (it will take a couple of days to dry out). Rehydrate by soaking in water again.

We gave ours away for Mother's Day with little wrappers around them.


Stephanie said...

Hmmm.... those sound nice!

Michelle said...

What a cute idea!

devildogwife said...

I've always wanted to make some of these. Thanks for sharing how to do it!!

Celeste said...

These would be great to wear out on trail ride or in the field!

Lisa Knight said...

We had these in the sewing shop I used to work in. I don't remember selling any of the premades, but it was a class they had. Great Idea, especially when you work somewhere without airconditioning!

Sara said...

Neat idea! I've never heard of this.

Anonymous said...

I just made my first one and it took a grand total of 35 minutes start to finish. My only comment is that I believe in direction #3 it should be to iron it with the patterned side IN so that when you turn it right side out, the patterned side is on the outside. I use these in my exercise classes as I have MS and it prevents me from getting overheated. Thanks for the directions...I can make them for a fraction of the price of buying them!

Whitney Allen Photography said...

Great Tutorial, only problem I have is you say to place fabric pattern out and then sew.... then turn it right side out...

Probably should say to place fabric wrong side out and sew the tube.

Again- thank you so much.

Anonymous said...

I knew a lady who made these and sent them to the troops. I want to make them for the whole family for when we are at the beach over the 4th. These are the easiest instructions I've found on the web. Thanks!