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August 17, 1940

Current Comment

JAMA. 1940;115(7):538-539. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810330044019

CLOTHING AND AIR CONDITIONING STANDARDS  The "double standard" of temperature for men and women complicates the problems of the engineer and increases the expense of heating and cooling office buildings. Women prefer higher temperatures than men for comfort not so much because of any difference in constitution as for the clothing they wear. Yaglou1 undertook some unique experiments to establish this point. The mean skin temperature of women under ordinary conditions in a room of 71.5 F. and 30 per cent relative humidity with 20 feet per minute air movement was about 2 degrees Fahrenheit lower than that of men. The feet and hands of women averaged 5 degrees cooler than men's, while the trunk was only 0.5 degree cooler than men's. When most of the men in a room were comfortable the women generally were cold. To make the women comfortable the room temperature had to be raised