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- 07/31/18--00:41: _The FDA is warning ...
- 07/31/18--01:38: _What I Rent: Rachel...
- 07/31/18--02:00: _I dropped out of un...
- 07/31/18--02:01: _National Orgasm Day...
- 07/31/18--02:28: _For years I couldn’...
- 07/31/18--03:06: _A job advert is off...
- 07/31/18--03:41: _Morbidly obese cat ...
- 07/31/18--04:00: _Chessington World O...
- 07/31/18--04:00: _Black women are lit...
- 07/31/18--04:05: _It’s National Orgas...
- 07/31/18--04:10: _Be careful what you...
- 07/31/18--05:27: _Why Turkey’s holida...
- 07/31/18--05:31: _As it’s National Or...
- 07/31/18--06:00: _I’m not well, but I...
- 07/31/18--06:33: _A pilot and the dau...
- 07/31/18--06:45: _Glasgow’s trees are...
- 07/31/18--08:56: _National Orgasm Day...
- 07/31/18--09:04: _I’m visually impair...
- 07/31/18--09:08: _National Orgasm Day...
- 07/31/18--22:23: _Scottish rescue dog...
- 07/31/18--00:41: The FDA is warning against vaginal rejuvenation treatments
- 07/31/18--04:10: Be careful what you wish for when it comes to Cards Against Humanity
- 07/31/18--05:27: Why Turkey’s holiday hotspot Marmaris is back on the map
- 45% said abdominal exercise.
- 26.5% weight lifting.
- 20% yoga.
- 15.8% cycling.
- 13.2% running.
- And a lucky 9.6% said they got off on going for a brisk walk.
- 07/31/18--06:45: Glasgow’s trees are saving the city’s life
- 07/31/18--08:56: National Orgasm Day: 9 health benefits of having an orgasm
- 07/31/18--09:04: I’m visually impaired, but it doesn’t give you the right to grab me
- 07/31/18--09:08: National Orgasm Day: Easy ways to have even better orgasms
Vaginal rejuvenation procedures are all the rage.
Spend some time on the internet and you’ll see stories of women whose lives have been transformed by having lasers blasted at their bits, and stats showing just how common treatments such as labiaplasties have become.
Our obsession with having the ‘perfect’ genitals – in terms of external appearance, tightness, scent, and ‘cleanliness’ (just look at all the unnecessary vagina ‘detox’ products out there) – pushes us to extreme measures, spending large amounts of money to strive towards an ideal.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is urging people with vaginas to resist the pressure, stating that the organisation is ‘deeply concerned’ about the rise of vaginal rejuvenation treatment.
As the FDA explains, many of the laser treatments advertised as the key to super tight vaginas are not officially approved, and pose risks of vaginal burns, scarring, and chronic pain.
The FDA’s administration commissioner Scott Gottlieb said: ‘The deceptive marketing of unproven treatments may not only cause injuries but may also keep some patients from accessing appropriate, recognized therapies.
‘We are deeply concerned women are being harmed.’
The FDA has now sent letters to makers of vaginal laser devices and given them 30 days to respond to concerns.
Many treatments promise top increase sexual pleasure, reduce pain, tighten the vagina, and even help to reduce vaginal dryness. To keep offering these treatments, practitioners will need to provide the FDA with evidence to back up those claims.
Alma Lasers, BTL Aesthetics, BTL Industries, Cynosure, InMode, Sciton, and Thermigen have all been warned to change their marketing to make clear that they have not been approved for vaginal rejuvenation.
There haven’t yet been the same warnings in the U.K., but it’s worth taking the FDA’s concerns as an urge to do your research before booking in any vagina related treatments.
If you’re struggling with difficulty having sex, talk to your GP before you rush to book the cheapest procedure you can find – they’ll likely have other recommended treatments to try before committing to lasers or surgery.
If you have your heart set on a treatment, do your research to make sure the practitioner is officially certified. Make sure you have consultations to be clear on the results you should expect. Only have a procedure done in a safe, clean, clinical setting.
As these treatments become more popular, you’re going to see ads popping up all over the place, promising all kind of miraculous fixes. Keep your wits about you and don’t get swept into the vagina hype. These treatments are risky and you need to proceed carefully.
Oh, and remember: Your vagina does not need to be super tight and ‘youthful’. Unless it’s causing you issues, it’s perfectly fine the way it is. The same goes for your labia.
There’s no such thing as a ‘normal’ vagina. Try to embrace yours in its unique glory before rushing into pricey, risky surgeries and treatments to change it.
Dead vagina syndromeDead vagina syndromeellencscott
Finding a place to live in London can be a hellish experience of misleading photos, bathroom mould, and showers slotted in kitchens.
Once you find a place that’s decent, you’ll have to pay quite a bit for the privilege of living there.
It doesn’t help that – thanks to our cultural reluctance to talk about money – many of us aren’t really sure how much we ‘should’ be paying.
Our parents will gasp at the prospect of paying £900 a month, but that’s probably because they grew up at a time when declaring you wanted to buy a house wouldn’t get you laughed at.
That’s why each week we take an honest, upfront look at someone’s London renting situation as part of our weekly series, What I Rent.
The idea is that by looking at what Londoners are getting for what they’re paying, we’ll be able to put together a clearer picture of what’s normal – and stop people getting massively ripped off.
This week we’re heading to Seven Sisters to hang out with Rachel, a 27-year-old art student from North London, currently studying Performance Design at Central Saint Martins.
Hey Rachel! How much are you paying for your one bedroom flat?
My rent is £936 a month, which is thankfully mostly covered by student loans.
Water, electricity, and internet bills usually come to around £110 per month. I currently don’t have to pay council tax as I am a student.
And what are you getting for that price?
I have a substantial living/bedroom area, one bathroom, decent kitchen and a lovely garden all to myself.
How long have you lived in the flat?
I’ve lived here since January 2018.
I found the flat on RightMove and immediately after the viewing I went to the letting agent’s office and filled out the application. You have to be very quick in London!
What do you think of living where you live?
I absolutely love where I live.
My landlord is a lovely man, the other people who live in my flat block are great, I live close to the tube and most importantly… I live 5 minutes walk away from three good friends of mine who all happen to be some of London’s most fabulous Drag Queens. What more could you want?!
Fair. Do you feel like you have enough space?
My flat may seem small but it is enough space for me.
My landlord very kindly bought large new wardrobes when I moved in (he even let me pick the style, so of course I chose the ones with the most mirrors) so there is plenty of storage space.
I love cooking and feel that the kitchen is a good size, which is very rare for a studio flat in London. A great additional feature of the flat is the garden, I love having friends over for dinner in the garden.
You have rats… but the good pet kind, not the rat-infested kitchens you sometimes find in London. Tell us about them.
I have two ratties called Gus and Mushroom (Gus is the one I am holding in the photos) and I am absolutely besotted with them. One of the most important things about choosing this flat was that the landlord let me keep rats.
By scale, their house is actually bigger than mine, even though they are rarely in it. They have free rein of my flat and are (mostly!) very well behaved. They are toilet trained and come to me when I call them, like tiny little dogs.
Mushroom is a bit shy, his favourite hobbies are playing in his paddling pool and building nests. Gus is one of the most docile creatures I have ever met. He absolutely loves sitting on my knee, massages, having a nap under my pillows and both of them will do anything for a snack.
I am trying to train Gus to wear tiny clothes and accessories in the hope that he will become London’s first Rat Drag Queen.
It’s just you and the rats, right?
I live alone. My boyfriend spends a lot of time here too which is lovely because the rats need a good father figure in their lives.
You’ve definitely made the place your own – how did you turn your flat into a home?
I am very lucky to have a landlord who let me decorate! This was my first time doing any DIY and I am so pleased with how the living/bedroom area turned out.
The big wall in the living area was previously painted a luminous shade of orange which wasn’t to my taste, so I painted it white and covered it in fabulous banana leaf print wallpaper. My inspiration for decor comes from The Beverly Hills Hotel in L.A. and Palm Vaults café in Hackney.
I have lots of mirrors which make the place feel bigger and look brighter. The handyman installed my tacky plastic purple chandelier for me, which no home is complete without.
The garden was full of junk left by previous tenants when I moved in, so my landlord cleared it out for me and I was able to plant all my gorgeous flowers.
We spend a lot of time in the garden, the rats have a tiny bed that we take outside with us so they can enjoy the fresh air.
Are there any major issues with the house you have to put up with?
Thankfully, no major issues. If there is ever anything wrong, my landlord sends the handyman around pretty much immediately.
Any plans to move again?
I really don’t want to move again for a long time! I am just about to start the second year of my degree and would love to stay here for the duration of it.
And what about buying a place?
I would never be able to afford it in London! My boyfriend has promised me he will buy us a house when he is a world-famous artist.
I think living in a castle with a few Irish Wolfhounds would really suit us. Can’t wait.
Sounds dreamy. Shall we have a look around Rachel’s place?
A quick note on this piece: We’ve described Rachel’s place as a one-bedroom flat, but because the bedroom and living room are combined, it could be seen as a studio. We’re using House Network’s definition of a studio as a flat with the kitchen, living area, and bedroom all combined into one room, which is why we’ve described this place – with a separate kitchen – as a one-bedroom flat.
We’re going to put together a follow-up piece on when a studio flat becomes a one bedroom, and what landlords are actually allowed to describe as one-bedroom flats, because frankly we’re not sure where the line is either – and that has to be confusing when you’re trying to find somewhere to live.
What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am. Check back next week to have a nose around another rented property in London.
How to get involved in What I Rent
What I Rent is Metro.co.uk's weekly series that takes you inside the places in London people are renting, to give us all a better sense of what's normal and how much we should be paying.
If you fancy taking part, please email email@example.com.
You'll need to have pictures taken of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your room. Make sure you get permission for your housemates!
You'll also need to be okay with sharing how much you're paying for rent, as that's pretty important.
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It all began in September 2013.
My accommodation opened a week before university did, which effectively gave me two weeks of freshers events and, as I thought, twice as long to settle in and make loads of friends.
I wouldn’t say it all started to go wrong right straight away, but I did spend that first night missing my bed at home, my dog, and the annoying sound of the warehouse that never seemed to close near my house. All the things that made my home, home.
I’d spent the month or so before my course looking for full-time jobs as I wasn’t 100% sure university was right for me, such was my apprehension before I made the move.
I can’t say I’d always wanted to work in my chosen course of air transport and logistics, though it did interest me, and as crippling depression had destroyed my chances of strong A Level results, it was something I could actually get into.
As the weeks went by, I made few friends. Flatmates often invited me to their rooms to play games and such, but I didn’t really connect with many people.
I was an hour from home, and I found it too easy to go back every weekend. It never really occurred to me that the reason was because I was unhappy.
I was homesick.
The more time passed, the more alone I felt.
I would go days without leaving my room, not feeling as though I fit in with my flatmates.
At times – though I’m sure it was all in my head – I felt as though I was just their entertainment once I’d had a few drinks. Probably not the greatest idea to drink when you have a history of mental illness.
The rest of the time was a waking nightmare. I had no friends on my course and the only people I really spoke to were as lonely as I was.
I made it to the first reading week of the academic year, around mid-November. I played it off as just wanting to study at home, away from the temptations of £1 Wednesdays, but in reality I had a massive breakdown in my room. I knew I wasn’t coping.
I felt incredibly lonely and so isolated. I didn’t want to be there anymore, and it was right then, curled up on my single bed, that I knew I had to get out.
I had the mindset that I was pretty much on a glorified, incredibly expensive, residential trip, and I suppose me going home every weekend didn’t help in that respect.
Nothing had prepared me for what living on my own – being an actual, real life adult – would be like. Nothing in the bubble of high school can ever prepare you mentally.
I was barely eating; I don’t need to be looked after at home, but I was in such a fragile mental state that I just didn’t have the motivation.
I felt like a fraud, getting into university without even meeting the entry requirements. Then I felt like a failure when I threw all my stuff into my bags to head home.
My dad asked me something I will never forget: ‘Don’t you think you’re throwing it all away?’
It’s hard to say if it was the best decision I ever made, because it was a difficult time and led to further issues. Thanks to my halls contract, I went into a spiral of debt that I’m only now getting on top of, and I spent 10 months unemployed.
But I managed to get myself an apprenticeship, and I’ve been working for the last four years in an accounts department.
I’m set up in a decent job, with great career prospects for the future, and I’m a part qualified accountant.
None of this would have happened if I had stayed at university.
To anyone doubting if university is for you: don’t force yourself, if you’re not ready.
Metro IllustrationsMetro IllustrationsqinxieI dropped out of university because of homesickness - but it was the right decision for me University halls car parent student leaving kicked out resident campus Liberty Antonia Sadler for Metro.co.ukman on his own
When you’ve been having sex with the same person for a while, it can be tempting to push the boundaries.
The fireworks which come from exploring another person’s body are gone. So, how do you replace them?
For some people, the answer is having riskier sex. Because when sex is risky, it can create a rush of adrenaline. Adrenaline is a hormone secreted by the adrenal glands that increases rates of blood circulation, breathing, and carbohydrate metabolism and prepares muscles for exertion.
Your body produces adrenaline in all sorts of different circumstances, one of which is when you’re nervous. So the first time you sleep with someone new, there’s usually a heavy whack of adrenaline thanks to those nerves and excitement.
But putting yourself at risk of being caught during sex (or rather, by simulating that risk – more on that later), you can get that first time feeling back.
Sexpert Ema Gautier, who works for Lelo, told Metro.co.uk: ‘We all know that having (or doing) something we’re not supposed to makes things a lot more exciting and no matter how fun and satisfying your sex life currently is, there’s something exhilarating about throwing a little danger into your routine.
‘The risk of getting caught having sex or finding a location out of the ordinary certainly increases desire but what really turns most people on about having sex in public and with the risk of getting caught is how it takes you out of the realm of comfort.
‘Physically, endorphins in the brain increase due to a combination of fear of being caught and the anticipation of an orgasm. In a risqué situation it means you’re not in complete control of your climax and this can most definitely help intensify your orgasm.’
However, its important to make sure that you’re not having sex in a dangerous way which could get you arrested or cause distress to other people. You need to understand the rules about exposure and follow them.
The law when it comes to sex and nudity is that you should have a ‘reasonable expectation of privacy’. So, if you’re having sex in your bedroom but up against or close to a bedroom window, that’s okay. Doing it in the street obviously is not.
Your own back garden is a legal grey area, as we explored with topless sunbathing. You should use caution if you’re intending to, and consider which parts of the garden are least overlooked.
Sex in deserted beaches and parks is not technically legal in the UK, so while you might make your own choice on the basis of the time of day/night and whether people are around, you’re not on the right side of the law. If you’re caught you’re likely to either get a caution or, depending on the severity of the situation, a fine and a community order.
Please also remember that the laws are different in different countries and there are places (especially Middle Eastern countries) where indecent exposure is considered a major crime.
Another safer way to get your adrenaline pumping is to have sex in a hotel or holiday rental when you know there’s a chance of being overheard.
As with any other sexual behaviour, risky sex should be enjoyed by a consenting couple (or more) and should not become the default. Like any other pleasurable experience, risky sex can become compulsive, which can in turn be destructive. If you’re worried about sex addiction, contact the Samaritans or your GP.
ILLUSTRATION REQUEST: Don’t do it! XX people share their horrifying and cautionary stories of sex with their ex (Bibi Lynch)ILLUSTRATION REQUEST: Don’t do it! XX people share their horrifying and cautionary stories of sex with their ex (Bibi Lynch)rebeccacnreidWhy does your sex drive increase in the summer?
It’s National Orgasm Day so I thought I would reflect on the statistic that 70% of women cannot orgasm from penetration alone.
I know. 70%.
Truly some depressing news. Ladies, I feel your pain. But there are some of us that struggle to achieve climax at all.
You see, for the majority of my sexually active life, I was anorgasmic. I did not experience orgasms, by myself or with a partner, and I wrote extensively about this.
However, you’ll notice, I say did, because I am happy to report that I am now in the goddamn orgasm elite.
I learnt a lot, from my time in the trenches, fighting to have an orgasm.
I read every single thing that has been written about the female orgasm, and I tried everything people suggested to me.
And, on hearing that sad statistic, I wanted to offer my advice to all gals out there who are RSVP-ing to the party and then not coming. I’ve got you.
First, get to know your own body. I spoke to a lot of women who found masturbation dirty. How are you going to come with someone else if you can’t get yourself off?
Learn what you like. Masturbation is self-care. And unlike getting a massage, or buying yourself new clothes, it doesn’t cost you anything, and it only takes a few minutes.
Your body is a gift. It can do this amazing thing for you, why wouldn’t you try it?
The second piece of advice ties in with that. Please, just buy a vibrator.
Sex should not be centred around the male orgasm. It’s a two-person (or more if you’re into that) activity, why should one person’s orgasm matter less?
My personal recommendation would be a magic wand, but the bullet is well-known as the ‘my first vibrator’. Go straight to a wand and it will blow your clit clean off.
Again, I’ve spoken to so many women who were put off by something mechanical, or worried that their boyfriend would be intimidated by a vibrator.
If it’s the first reason, get over yourself.
If you haven’t got a vibrator for the second reason, throw the whole boyfriend out. No man worth keeping is intimidated by a vibrator.
We are blessed to have safe vibrators. The first vibrator was catching bees in a gourd. Google it. If your female ancestors knew you were passing on a vibrator that didn’t sting you, they’d be hella mad.
Next, never fake an orgasm. I didn’t have much choice on this one.
Having never had an orgasm, I wouldn’t have known how to fake it when I started having sex. I was shocked when I found out how many orgasmic women faked it (according to Ann Summers, it’s around 80%).
I couldn’t even have orgasms, and women are out there faking to preserve the egos of men?
Sex should not be centred around the male orgasm. It’s a two-person (or more if you’re into that) activity, why should one person’s orgasm matter less?
So many men are walking around thinking they are the best sex any woman’s ever had.
Ladies, you deserve better. Demand more in the bedroom. The devaluing of female orgasm is a big factor in this 70% stat. Don’t be afraid of getting yours.
Lastly, remember that the female orgasm is so different from the male orgasm.
People always used to say, ‘you’ll know when you’ve had an orgasm,’ but it’s not actually true.
I used to have micro-orgasms, where I experienced the relief after but not the ecstasy during. I never registered that these were orgasms.
They gradually built up, and now I’ve had orgasms so intensely beautiful I’ve been on the verge of tears. However, it took me so long to understand that I was orgasming, and I can’t say I know when I had my first because the change from micro-O to BIG O was over time.
Forget your expectations, orgasms aren’t what you think they are.
Being anorgasmic for so long was actually a good thing. I appreciate the entire journey of sex, whereas people who have always been orgasmic are always in a rush to the destination.
I’ve tried so many different things in pursuit of orgasm that I now have a whole buffet of things I enjoy sexually, whereas most people just have a set menu.
I learnt to not put pressure on myself and know that my body can give me an amazing thing, if I chill the f out about it.
Be kind to yourself, you’ll get there. If you’re in the 70%, I can say to you, with confidence, you will come to the party. You’re just fashionably late, and those are the best people to have at a party anyway.
ella byworthella byworthjessrubyaustin
Skilled with a camera and looking to pick up some extra cash?
You might want to look at the job advert that’s just popped up on Bark.com.
A request has appeared from a couple searching for a videographer to film their wedding night.
Yes, their wedding night.
The couple has put aside around £2,000 for the service, but they say this is negotiable. Not a bad price for a night’s work though, right?
‘Both myself and my fiancé believe that your wedding day shouldn’t just be limited to a day, and actually your wedding night is just as important,’ reads the advert. ‘Obviously during the day, everyone has photographers and videographers etc capturing all of the days moments and memories, but it’s not a norm for someone to have that on their wedding night.’
The couple say they’ve been searching for a videographer to film their wedding night since they got engaged in 2016, but haven’t been able to find someone who’d be willing and who’d they be comfortable with.
Their wedding is now just around the corner in September, so the couple are keen to sort out filming as soon as possible.
The videographer would need to start work at around 1am and finish at around 3am, depending on what time the party finishes.
‘We’d like a mixture of still and moving shots, and we also want it all to look professional, so any lighting in the room etc will need to be sorted beforehand,’ explains the ad.
‘We know it’s an odd request but it’s something we’re really keen on.’
With such an confusingly-worded statement, we thought we’d do some digging:
The film won’t be published anywhere, so sadly the videographer who films the night won’t get to use it as part of their portfolio. The couple will be keeping their wedding night video for themselves.
The exact details of what’s needed will be discussed when speaking to potential videographers.
The couple would like to remain anonymous, obviously, which does make us question how legit the offer really is. They might just want to party until 3am rather than the inferred ‘wedding night antics’ of the announcement.
The whole thing could just be a slightly questionable way to promote a marketplace.
When you click to ‘register your services’, you’re asked to enter your email address, phone number, and tick your skills, and are then greeted with a screen that says you can ‘quote up to 10 jobs risk-free’ and invites you to buy a ‘starter pack’ of 80 credits for £76.80. There’s also no confirmation that you’ve actually applied for the wedding night videographer job.
Bark.com co-founder Kai Feller said: ‘We know how important videographers are for married couples across the UK… However, this is the first time we’ve been alerted to a request of this nature.
‘Obviously wedding night videography isn’t a service we explicitly offer on site, but hopefully one of our videographers is willing to help the couple out. Who knows, if we have a lot of applications perhaps we could look at making it an additional service on the site.’
We reached out to Bark for their comment on suggestions that the advert may be too good to be true (or too good not to be a PR stunt), and were told: ‘Understand with the page that it could appear it but post isn’t fake. I’ve attached images of the advert for reference.
‘With the process of Bark, all service professional have to pay for onsite credits to quote for jobs that come in from members of the public.
‘The couple has not yet had any videographer come forward for the job and this is the reason they are happy for us to make their request public.’
We’ve also tasked a member of our video team with applying (hey, if they land the job they get £2,000) so we can see what happens at the next stages.
xx top tips for enjoyable anal sex (Katy Red)xx top tips for enjoyable anal sex (Katy Red)ellencscott
There’s a lot of Bronson to love.
At just three years old, Bronson the cat weighed in at a massive 33lbs when he arrived at West Michigan Humane Society in May, following the death of his owner.
He was more than double the weight of an average cat, and his tummy had a circumference of 32 inches. As you might have guessed, that’s not a healthy weight for a cat, and he struggled to move around and play.
Shelter volunteers reckon he was overfed high-carb kibble multiple times a day by an elderly owner, leading to his huge weight gain.
Thankfully shortly after Bronson arrived at the shelter, he was adopted by Mike Wilson and Megan Hannman, a couple who were dedicated to making sure the cat was in good health.
The couple, who design cat furniture, had planned to adopt a kitten, but when they spotted Bronson they fell in love – and knew they needed to help him shift the pounds.
They’ve now put Bronson on a vet-recommended diet that restricts his food intake to 375 calories a day.
In just a few months he’s already lost 1.5lbs and has overcome his addiction to kibble, now happily tucking in to wet, low-fat cat food. Great job, Bronson.
‘When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size,’ said Mike. ‘He was huge. He really needed help.
‘We went back to the humane society the following day to discuss the possibility of adopting him.
‘Luckily they thought we would be a good match for Bronson because of our experience with cats and also what we do for a living.
‘We don’t know a whole lot about Bronson’s past. The shelter thinks his owner might have been an elderly person who wasn’t very mobile themselves and overfed him.
‘His blood tests revealed that he didn’t have any health problems which would cause this weight gain, so it was just overindulgence.
‘We think that Bronson used to be on a diet of kibble, which is mostly carbs. We’re pretty sure he was fed every few hours before.
‘We’ve switched it up. He’s now on a wet food which is grain free and low fat. We add water to it so that it becomes sort of like a soup to fill him up.
‘He likes the food fine, but you can tell he just wants more. He wakes us up in the middle of the night meowing for a snack.’
We can relate.
Bronson still has some weight to lose, as he needs to be slim enough to have an operation for his broken tooth. He’s currently too heavy for anaesthetic to be used safely, and he’s limited to staying indoors as his health isn’t strong enough to take medications to protect him from fleas and ticks.
He’ll need to drop a few more lbs before he can live life to the fullest.
‘Our vet discovered that one of his teeth is broken and it needs to be pulled but right now he’s to heavy for anesthetic to perform the operation safely,’ explains Mike.
‘So far he’s lost one and a half pounds but hopefully in a couple of months he can have that tooth pulled.
‘We think this time next year he will have a much better quality of life
‘Of course, he would like to be eating more. He’s not thrilled with the lifestyle changes but hopefully he’ll be happier when he can move around better in a few months.’
image (4)-2874image (4)-2874ellencscottBronson weighs twice the size of a normal cat. See SWNS story NYCAT; A morbidly obese cat who loved chowing down on carb-heavy kibble is on the path to a slimmer life after starting a strict fat busting diet. Bronson, three, weighed a whopping 33lbs when he was dropped into West Michigan Humane Society in May, after his owner sadly passed away. The buss tabby cat was more than double the weight of an average cat and his mammoth belly measured a hefty 32 inches. Shelter volunteers suspected that Bronson had been overfed several times each day by his owner with high-carb kibble leading to his alarming size. Mike Wilson, 35, and Megan Hanneman, 29, were hoping to adopt a new kitten when they first encountered larger-than-life Bronson in May. The couple, who design cat furniture, knew Bronson needed help shifting the pounds and decided to adopt the chubby feline. Mike and Megan, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, have placed massive Bronson on a vet recommended diet, which has restricted his intake to 375 calories every day. Since May, Bronson has shed an incredible 1.5lbs and has almost completely conquered his kibble addiction, now opting for wet, grain-free, low-fat cat food. Mike, co-owner of Catastrophic Creations, said: ???When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size. He was huge.Bronson with Megan. See SWNS story NYCAT; A morbidly obese cat who loved chowing down on carb-heavy kibble is on the path to a slimmer life after starting a strict fat busting diet. Bronson, three, weighed a whopping 33lbs when he was dropped into West Michigan Humane Society in May, after his owner sadly passed away. The buss tabby cat was more than double the weight of an average cat and his mammoth belly measured a hefty 32 inches. Shelter volunteers suspected that Bronson had been overfed several times each day by his owner with high-carb kibble leading to his alarming size. Mike Wilson, 35, and Megan Hanneman, 29, were hoping to adopt a new kitten when they first encountered larger-than-life Bronson in May. The couple, who design cat furniture, knew Bronson needed help shifting the pounds and decided to adopt the chubby feline. Mike and Megan, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, have placed massive Bronson on a vet recommended diet, which has restricted his intake to 375 calories every day. Since May, Bronson has shed an incredible 1.5lbs and has almost completely conquered his kibble addiction, now opting for wet, grain-free, low-fat cat food. Mike, co-owner of Catastrophic Creations, said: ???When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size. He was huge.Bronson weighs twice the size of a normal cat. See SWNS story NYCAT; A morbidly obese cat who loved chowing down on carb-heavy kibble is on the path to a slimmer life after starting a strict fat busting diet. Bronson, three, weighed a whopping 33lbs when he was dropped into West Michigan Humane Society in May, after his owner sadly passed away. The buss tabby cat was more than double the weight of an average cat and his mammoth belly measured a hefty 32 inches. Shelter volunteers suspected that Bronson had been overfed several times each day by his owner with high-carb kibble leading to his alarming size. Mike Wilson, 35, and Megan Hanneman, 29, were hoping to adopt a new kitten when they first encountered larger-than-life Bronson in May. The couple, who design cat furniture, knew Bronson needed help shifting the pounds and decided to adopt the chubby feline. Mike and Megan, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, have placed massive Bronson on a vet recommended diet, which has restricted his intake to 375 calories every day. Since May, Bronson has shed an incredible 1.5lbs and has almost completely conquered his kibble addiction, now opting for wet, grain-free, low-fat cat food. Mike, co-owner of Catastrophic Creations, said: ???When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size. He was huge.Bronson weighs twice the size of a normal cat. See SWNS story NYCAT; A morbidly obese cat who loved chowing down on carb-heavy kibble is on the path to a slimmer life after starting a strict fat busting diet. Bronson, three, weighed a whopping 33lbs when he was dropped into West Michigan Humane Society in May, after his owner sadly passed away. The buss tabby cat was more than double the weight of an average cat and his mammoth belly measured a hefty 32 inches. Shelter volunteers suspected that Bronson had been overfed several times each day by his owner with high-carb kibble leading to his alarming size. Mike Wilson, 35, and Megan Hanneman, 29, were hoping to adopt a new kitten when they first encountered larger-than-life Bronson in May. The couple, who design cat furniture, knew Bronson needed help shifting the pounds and decided to adopt the chubby feline. Mike and Megan, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, have placed massive Bronson on a vet recommended diet, which has restricted his intake to 375 calories every day. Since May, Bronson has shed an incredible 1.5lbs and has almost completely conquered his kibble addiction, now opting for wet, grain-free, low-fat cat food. Mike, co-owner of Catastrophic Creations, said: ???When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size. He was huge.Bronson weighs twice the size of a normal cat. See SWNS story NYCAT; A morbidly obese cat who loved chowing down on carb-heavy kibble is on the path to a slimmer life after starting a strict fat busting diet. Bronson, three, weighed a whopping 33lbs when he was dropped into West Michigan Humane Society in May, after his owner sadly passed away. The buss tabby cat was more than double the weight of an average cat and his mammoth belly measured a hefty 32 inches. Shelter volunteers suspected that Bronson had been overfed several times each day by his owner with high-carb kibble leading to his alarming size. Mike Wilson, 35, and Megan Hanneman, 29, were hoping to adopt a new kitten when they first encountered larger-than-life Bronson in May. The couple, who design cat furniture, knew Bronson needed help shifting the pounds and decided to adopt the chubby feline. Mike and Megan, of Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA, have placed massive Bronson on a vet recommended diet, which has restricted his intake to 375 calories every day. Since May, Bronson has shed an incredible 1.5lbs and has almost completely conquered his kibble addiction, now opting for wet, grain-free, low-fat cat food. Mike, co-owner of Catastrophic Creations, said: ?When we first saw Bronson we were shocked because we had never seen a cat his size. He was huge.
How much do you like tigers?
I mean, I think we can all agree they’re pretty awesome.
They can see six times better than we can at night.
They use their tails to say hi.
They manage to be both terrifying and cute at the same time.
But do you like them so much that you want to spend the night in a tiger-themed room before going on a tiger-themed ride surrounded by tigers?
Yes? Then you’ll probably like Chessington World Of Adventures Resort’s Safari Hotel.
The theme’s pretty straightforward, but fun none the less.
The park has another hotel – Azteca – and a glamping area, but who cares about them when you can stay in a room where there’s a tiger bursting out of a wall?
Why the tiger theme?
Well, the park has a section called Land Of The Tiger, which includes a log flume ride called Tiger Rock and four Amur tigers in an enclosure that includes overhead walkways.
The tiger-themed rooms were, well, just look at the pictures.
There were tigers bursting through the wall, framed tiger photos, tiger stripe bed spread, tiger stripe cushion and tiger paw prints on the carpet.
And this was just the adults’ section of a family room.
The kids’ half was even more enthusiastic.
The only fault I’d point out here is that the kids got a giant cuddly toy tiger – but only for the night, not as part of the cost of the room.
Luckily, my niece and nephew didn’t seem too interested in him, but good luck prying a (give or take) £100 stuffed animal from your crying child’s hands when you check out.
The bathroom seemed pretty normal (well, there was obviously a tiger pic in it, standard), but when you flushed the loo, the creators of this tiger-themed den dreamt up the best bit, in my opinion.
Yes, you hear a tiger’s roar when you flush. A growl when you foul. A big cat when you’ve – well, you get the idea.
On the main walls of the room, there are facts about tigers, and there were really lovely views of the safari park from the window.
The kids were reasonably entertained in the hotel itself.
They began their visit in the Savannah Splash Pool, which they loved.
After dinner, we all tried a music quiz (which was a bit too old for them and, at four and six, almost past their bed time).
In the Zafari Bar and Grill restaurant, there was a disappointing lack of tiger-themed foods.
That said, the menu was, for theme parks, reasonable value and even included cocktails – there’s a range of gin drinks, mojitos and Aperol spritz for £8.50, and mocktails for £3.50.
On the kids’ menu, three courses sets you back £9.95, and two courses £7.95.
Options included tomato soup, sausage and mash, macaroni cheese and profiteroles.
Also on the kids’ dessert menu was Gruffalo Crumble – which I had for serious reviewing purposes, not because the kids just wanted ice cream.
This was supposed to be ice cream topped with cream, jelly, crumble, cream and sweets, but mine tasted quite bland – too much ice cream and not enough everything else.
Hotel guests can also dine at the Temple Restaurant – there’s a buffet menu – but this was closed during our stay.
Breakfast was slightly chaotic and involved a lot of queuing for bacon, but we did choose to go to the restaurant at rush hour (8.30am) – it’s open from 6.30am if you’re up that early.
Part of the benefit of staying at the hotel was getting to go into the park early.
The highlights in terms of attractions included The Gruffalo River Ride Adventure (there’s Gruffalo themed rooms in the hotel too, if your kids are obsessed with that at the mo).
Both kids enjoyed it.
Queuing up, they were a bit nervous it might be scary, but it was a fairly gentle water ride that tells the much-loved story visually.
Probably because of their ages, the kids loved the play park and animal elements of Chessington more than the rides.
They spent ages running round Amazu, especially its series of walkways up high, with monkeys and parrots nearby.
As for Land Of The Tiger, it had an interesting design and the kids enjoyed spotting the Amur tigers Tsar, Kyra, Olga and Kalinka. But the log flume, Tiger Rock, was a bit daunting for them.
The eldest could have gone on it – it’s for kids of 1.2m and taller – but it was a bit out of his comfort zone.
I enjoyed it though – it’s your classic log flume ride, a little bit scary but not too scary, with an impressive drop and splash at the end.
We were very impressed by the food in the park during our day there.
Most theme parks I’ve visited can’t seem to get this right – not only is the food usually overpriced and almost exclusively junk food, it’s often of very poor quality.
However, we had lunch at Chessington’s Fried Chicken Co in the Forbidden Kingdom.
While there’s no point pretending this was akin to a home made salad, you could at least get a veggie burger or a chicken wrap, as well as some really tasty chicken.
Meals, including chips and a soft drink, cost about £7 each.
Overall, the zoo elements of the park interested the kids more than the rides, and it was good to see there were plenty of areas to run about in, as opposed to just giant queues ending in rides that hardly last any time at all.
As for the tiger room, they were neither scared nor particularly surprised (but will probably get a shock when they stay in normal hotels).
For my part, it was great waking up looking out across the plains (well, park), at the animals (grazing types) – more sheer calm than Shere Khan.
How much does it cost to stay at Chessington Safari Hotel?
A night in a tiger room at Chessington Safari Hotel, which can accommodate a family of four, starts from £359 per night.
This includes access to the Savannah Splash Pool, breakfast and two days’ entry tickets for the family.
Staying on site also means you can get into the park early, as we did, from the opposite side to the days’ crowds.
Check in is from 3pm and check out is at 10am, but head out earlier to make the most of your second day (and the lack of queues).
Standard rooms cost from £289, while character rooms, like the Gruffalo suites, cost from £489.
How to get to Chessington Safari Hotel
We drove – it takes about an hour from central London depending on traffic. We parked just outside the hotel and it was all very straightforward.
For day visitors, parking is £3, or £10 for a space closer to the entrance, and can be booked online in advance.
Alternatively, if travelling from London, you can take the train from Waterloo, Clapham Junction or Wimbledon to Chessington South.
The journey takes about half an hour – you then need to walk for about 10 minutes to the park.
A return ticket from Waterloo to Chessington South costs from £12.70 per adult.
As with all train journeys, children aged under five can travel for free as long as they’re with a fare-paying adult, while kids aged 5-15 can get a half price ticket.
National Rail is also running a two for one ticket offer to Chessington World Of Adventures – go to the Days Out Guide website for more details.
You could also take the 465 bus from Kingston to Chessington, or the 467 bus from Epsom.
(Top picture: Chessington World Of Adventures)
sumatran-tiger-be44sumatran-tiger-be44yvettemcaster(Picture: Chessington World Of Adventures)(Picture: Chessington World Of Adventures)(Picture: Yvette Caster)(Picture: Yvette Caster)(Picture: Chessington World Of Adventures)(Picture: Yvette Caster)
‘Ooo, you have a black woman’s figure…’.
‘White women are trying to look like black women…’.
I hear these statements all the time and I’ve always thought, what does it mean to look like a black woman?
Deep down, we know the answer, or at least we think we do. Apparently we are all supposed to have big butts and tiny waists.
We just don’t talk about our beauty standards and it’s high time that we, as black women, started having a conversation about our bodies, because the mainstream body positivity movement isn’t – and has no intention of doing so.
The pressure on black women to have the shape of a ‘black woman’ is crippling.
We’re meant to be the ‘right’ kind of thick; be curvy in all the ‘right’ places.
And I would argue that in an era where we fear our erasure and appropriation — and rightly so, just look at Kim Kardashian — we have been forced to defend a very dangerous body ideal.
This is doing more harm than good.
Black women are literally killing themselves to fit the beauty standards of what a black woman is supposed to look like.
As a plus size model, my job has always centered around fighting the norm, and in recent years, ‘body positivity’ and ‘diversity’ are have become key buzzwords for advertisers.
Given the current conversation around accepting one’s body, we could easily be mistaken and assume that the current body positivity movement is a rebellion against the ultra skinny beauty ideal.
In conversations where beauty standards are discussed, I often hear the narrative that the beauty standard for every woman is, and has always been, thin and white.
This simply isn’t true.
Allow me to explain.
How we view our bodies is much more complex than how western media portrays it. Beauty standards are set by cultural boundaries and traditions, something advertisers consistently fail to understand.
Growing up as a black woman, I never wanted to be skinny. The ‘heroin-chic’ look of the late ’90s to early ’00s was never an ideal body in my eyes, nor a point of discussion to anyone around me.
Growing up in an age before social media, my beauty standards were defined by the images and media in my surroundings, which at the time was predominantly African American.
In my world, we rarely saw the thin white woman.
We saw the video vixen in music videos – she was our beauty standard. Her pert round bottom, her defined skinny waist and her ample bosom. An exaggerated hourglass.
We all wanted to be like her, and to an a certain extent, we all still do.
Growing up as a black girl, if you didn’t have a small waist or a big bum, you were considered ugly.
As a result, black women are turning to unsafe tactics to achieve this figure.
Most famous is the conviction of Oneal Ron Morris, the woman who was sentenced to 10 years in prison for performing illegal butt injections, reportedly filled with horrifying ingredients such as cement, mineral oil and bathroom caulking, resulting in the death of one of her clients, Shatarka Nuby.
Celebrities such as K Michelle and Cardi B have openly discussed the appeal and consequent regret (and harm) of these backstreet injections. I applaud these women, because we have been silent for far too long.
It is important that, within the realm of body positivity, black women have the platform to speak on these issues and really interrogate the ideal ‘ black woman’ body narrative.
Personally, the current body positivity movement is unrelatable. Until I started modeling, I didn’t read any mainstream fashion magazines or go to any high-end fashion stores.
Much has been praised about the inclusion of curvy models in commercial advertising, and to an extent, there has been a noticeable shift.
However, black women are noticeably absent from this. More importantly, black women of different shape and sizes need to be included.
It’s not enough to have a few black women with hourglass figures in your campaign. This is permanently damaging in ways many advertisers fail to appreciate and understand.
While the black woman’s experience is unique, it should not be homogenised. We are all different, and suffer the consequences of the ‘ideal’ body image in different ways.
It is important that the body positivity movement includes, engages with, and better understands the experiences of black women, to ensure it is a truly inclusive movement that breaks beauty standards in all its forms.
We’re sure you have this written down in giant letters on your calendar, but in case you missed it: Today is National Orgasm Day.
Yes, that’s a day dedicated to the celebration of orgasms.
It’s natural, then, that sex toy brand LoveHoney will air an advert tonight that features four people at the point of climax.
The advert has been given the go-ahead to be screened on non-terrestrial channels including ITV channels and Comedy Central after the 9pm watershed from tonight, 31 July. So if you fancy giving it a watch after bedtime, you can keep an eye out on your TV. Or you could just watch the advert at the top of this article whenever you want. Easy.
It’s part of the brand’s Turn Up the Turn On campaign encouraging couples to bring some excitement to their sex lives.
The advert is designed to build up to a climax (just like sex does – get it?), showing couples taking off each other’s clothes, kissing, and throwing down on to a bed before showing two men and two women at the point of orgasm. Lovely.
It’s worth noting that the advert is under half a minute long, which is not representative of how long it usually takes to achieve climax (don’t panic if you’re not moaning the second someone rings your doorbell).
But it is nice to see sexual pleasure being shown on TV.
The ad’s director, Tiny Bullet from Thomas Thomas Films, said: ‘I have to say this was one of the more unusual briefs: to normalise sex toys and encourage the British public to have better sex.
‘Getting the right tone of voice was key – it had to be fun and sexy, but not too naughty.
‘We came up with some inventive ways to suggest products without showing them like the vibrator “cam” shot.
‘I also wanted the edit to have a rhythmic energy similar to having sex where we have moments of calm just like foreplay that build until the spot climaxes with our montage of orgasm faces.’
The game is known for its boundary-pushing and bad taste card combinations, but it also provides hilariously OTT customer service.
When Cards Against Humanity released a special glitter bomb Pride edition, 21 year old Kait Johnson from Massachusetts was one of the customers who rushed to order it.
However, she wasn’t quick enough to receive a pack with the added glitter, because the option to add glitter had already sold out online.
Kait then did what any self-respecting fan of the card game would do, and emailed customer services asking for ‘a sh*t tonne of glitter’.
Cards Against Humanity responded with a cryptic email from a customer services representative called Maria, saying: ‘Two things. Be careful what you wish for. Check your mailbox in about a week.’
They sent Kait an envelope filled with glitter, accompanied by a card reading: ‘Sorry we f***ed up! Love you.’
A couple of days later, a bigger envelope arrived, also filled with glitter.
You might think at this point that Kait’s longing for glitter had been well and truly satiated.
But no, Kait wanted more.
She got in touch with the Cards Against Humanity customer service team again, asking them ‘is that all you got?’
The company responded with another ominous message.
‘Sorry to have underwhelmed you. Thanks for the excuse to take this too far. Please continue to keep an eye out on your mailbox.’
Of course, even more glitter arrived. This time, it was a cardboard box filled with the sparkly stuff, and Kait had finally had her fill.
She emailed Cards Against Humanity, saying: ‘I haven’t seen the floor in days. Every time I think I’ve finally gotten rid of it all, a tiny bit more appears.
‘Then a tiny bit more and more. I’ve succumbed to eating a small bowl of glitter with milk in the hopes that I can just be rid of it all. Update it hasn’t worked.’
Kait posted her glitter journey on Facebook where it’s been liked 39,000 times and shared 280,000 times. Her experience also prompted thousands of people to comment on Cards Against Humanity’s amazing approach to customer service.
One Facebook user called it: ‘Customer service at its finest’.
This isn’t the first time that Cards Against Humanity has used the US postal service to send… unusual parcels.
The johnsonpotato website read: ‘Legally, we’re not allowed to call Senator Johnson a cruel idiot who doesn’t understand how health insurance works.
‘But we are allowed to mail thousands of potatoes to his office demanding that he listen to his constituents and hold a town hall meeting’.
Johnson faced backlash last year for saying that access to food, shelter and medicine should be considered a privilege for those who can afford it.
Whether Cards Against Humanity decides to use the mail to get involved in politics or troll customers in the future, one thing is certain.
Kait won’t run out of glitter for a really, really long time.
Be careful what you wish for when it comes to Cards Against HumanityBe careful what you wish for when it comes to Cards Against HumanityhpwilliamsonTo celebrate Pride month in June, Cards Against Humanity released a special edition Pride pack with the option to add glitter.To celebrate Pride month in June, Cards Against Humanity released a special edition Pride pack with the option to add glitter.
You might have the same reaction as I did when a week in Marmaris is floated. Call me Nana if you like, but my all-night euro disco days are done. I want rooftop restaurants and local wine over late night bars and lager.
You see, I had been operating under the misconception that Marmaris was more about beaches, beers and bars than a cultural, culinary and scenic hotspot.
Of course, I was way out.
Marmaris, nestled in a valley between two pine-clad mountains and a buzzy marina, is an ancient fortress town, linked to modern Marmaris by a palm tree-lined seafront promenade looking out to the point where the clear waters of the Mediterranean and Aegean seas meet.Why you should go to Gocek on Turkey’s Dalaman coast this summer
It has all the charm, authentic food and history you might be after, with a side helping of late-opening bars, both chic (there is a Hix on the yacht-lined marina) and lively (live music in cocktail bars on the boardwalk, dance music on Bar Street) if you seek it.
The old town itself is a charming warren of cobbled streets and white-washed stone buildings arranged higgledy piggledy up winding lanes opening on to cool courtyards, decorated with evil eyes and overgrown bourgainvillea.
Turn a corner and a shaded lane opens up to a glimpse of crystalline blue sea or the turreted walls of Marmaris castle, built by the Ionians in 1044 BC (though fort walls on this site date back 5,000 years), repaired in the 1500s by Suleyman the Magnificent during his expedition against Rhodes and now faithfully restored.
Yes, if you have ever gloated to Americans about their lack of history – ‘You call that an old building? This is an old building…’ then Turkey, land of the five millennia-old castle, will one up you time and time again – and Marmaris is no different.TripAdvisor just announced the top 25 destinations in the world and London is second
There is so much history stored within these walls and, indeed, the entire coastline. Wars won and lost during its rich Ottoman history; Alexander the Great invaded in 334BC and Lord Nelson sheltered here in 1700s.
Marmaris, once named Physkos and part of the 6th C Carian Empire, played a central part in Greek history and legend too. A cult to Leto (mother of Artemis and Apollo) was discovered in caves here and the Dalaman coast is where Icarus is said to have landed after his fateful flight.
Once you have walked the cool, shaded streets of the old town, explored the uncrowded shops (in August, Marmaris old town is surprisingly peaceful) you can head to the castle itself and walk the walls, finishing with a visit to the castle’s museum full of rare, well-preserved artefacts dating back thousands of years.
In the shadow of the castle is the Carsi Market, where you can buy jewellery, handbags, local honey and wines.
You will also have spotted from the heights of the castle walls the marina, with its mix of wooden fishing boats, pristine yachts and boutiques.
Stylish shops sell traditional Turkish linen, handmade soaps, coffee and spices, and if you’re in the market for gems (and you’re in the mood to bargain), you are likely to get a good price for gold and diamonds here.
Stroll around the picturesque harbour, stop off at a quayside restaurant or take one of the boat trips on offer from the harbour to the many nearby islands and islets.
We walked along the front for a cocktail on the waterfront before heading to dinner at Pineapple, a seafood restaurant right on the marina (visit pineapple.com.tr) for fresh sea bream and calamari, but you could have thrown a stone and hit any number of restaurants that served excellent fresh seafood and traditional Turkish cuisine.
WHERE TO STAY
D-Resort Grand Azur
Set back from the boardwalk a leisurely 30-minute walk from the old town in palm-fringed gardens with a generous sized pool, lazy river, slide and beach bar, this hotel is an oasis of calm with a dose of luxury.
We stayed in a seafront room on the top floor, and could have spent days just sitting on the balcony enjoying the mountain-framed sea views, listening to the live jazz waft up from the al fresco dining area each evening.
WHAT TO DO
In Marmaris you will never be short of things to do. Sailing and diving are a speciality, but water sports of all sorts are on offer.
On the doorstep of D Resort Grand Azur are a number of watersport companies offering waterskiing, jet skis and – our choice – parasailing with Turkey’s longest parasailing cord.
There’s nothing that quite compares to being 400metres up in the sky, gliding silently out to sea with only the birds for company.
Back on dry land, one of the highlights of the hotel is a private decked jetty that stretches out to sea.
While all those around you are sunbathing on the (very lovely, imported from Egypt) sand, you can be stretched out on a very Instagrammable lounger, nothing between you and the expanse of sparkling Aegean.
Oh – and nothing by your side but a button you can push to have drinks and snacks delivered from the beach bar.
SHOPPING, SAILING, SAFARIS
You can hire a boat all to yourself for around three hours to explore the coastline, with starting rates at £75.
Adrenalin junkies will enjoy the sunset jeep safari, which takes you into Marmaris National Park, where you’ll be bounced around in one of the all-terrain military vehicles before heading to a beach for a twilight swim and barbecue.
After dinner, we loved strolling along the seafront promenade to the marina.
By night you can still appreciate this truly beautiful bay with steep-sided wooded hillsides dropping down into a deep blue sea. Islands and headlands, little bays and beaches, harbours and tiny fishing ports – this is one of the prettiest coastlines around.
And don’t leave Marmaris without having a strong Turkish coffee in the sunshine.
SPA AND GYM
The exchange rate of the Turkish lira to the pound means that spa treatments are a steal. A Balinese massage at D Resort Grand Azur works out to £35 (at current exchange rates) for an hour. The whole hammam experience is £30. You could have a treatment every day over a three day long weekend and still get change out of £100.
D-Resort also has a well-equipped gym, indoor and outdoor swimming pools (including kids’ pools), flood-lit tennis courts and the Azur spa, with sauna, steam room, Turkish bath and solarium offering a wide range of massage and health treatments.
Turkish food is world renowned for its reliance on fresh, local ingredients and a fabulous sense of spice. The food in Marmaris is no exception
D-Resort operates an all-inclusive option, so you can eat at the buffet, which has an ever-changing barbecue menu along with an almost endless selection of Turkish stews and salads, with fresh fruit, ice cream and baklava readily available for pudding.
A natural honeycomb you could scrape the honey off yourself was a lovely touch at breakfast, along with Turkish cheeses, salads, traditional bacon and eggs, fruit and pastries. It is perfect for couples, but equally relaxed enough to take children and never feel like you should be seen and not heard.
Inclusive or not, and particularly if you are sans enfants (though our 7 and 9-year-olds were perfectly welcome and loved the food) you must take the time to dine on the rooftop steak restaurant, Steak & Bar.
In fact, Steak & Bar is a must-visit no matter where you are staying in Marmaris: most will tell you it is the best restaurant in town.
The venue runs the entire side of the curved building, with a terrace for cocktails and tables that allow for an unfettered view over the ocean tinged pink by the setting sun.
The menu is excellent – centred on steak, but also has excellent fish and veggie options – we did our best to eat our way through it and still didn’t manage to blow the budget, which brings us on to another benefit of a trip to Turkey.
With the pound so weak against the Euro, a holiday in Spain or France is no longer the affordable option.
The current exchange rate gives you 6.18 Turkish Lira to the pound and, with prices for food (outside of Istanbul, at least) relatively low already, you will be able to have a much higher standard of living here than in many countries of Europe.
Yes, Turkey has its share of political problems – and this article talking about President Erdogan’s recent election campaign will give you a potted history of where it is currently and how it got there – but the UK government website says 1.6m British nationals travel to Turkey each year – and most visits are trouble free.
In fact, thanks to a serious revival, Turkey is flying up the popularity stakes, with only Spain and France taking more bookings from the UK.
It means Turkey is back on the map, whatever your budget.
Dalaman Airport is a four-hour flight from the UK – there are regular direct flights from most major UK airports to Dalaman airport.
Transfer is then an hour and a half by car.
Standard Sea view rooms at D-Resort Grand Azur start from £135 per night incl half board.
Address: D-Resort Grand Azur, Marmaris, Cumhuriyet, Bulvarı, No:17 48700 Marmaris, Mugla, Turkey
THE REST OF MARVELLOUS MARMARIS IN PICTURES
The hotel has killer views over the ocean (Picture: D-Resort Grand Azur Marmaris)The hotel has killer views over the ocean (Picture: D-Resort Grand Azur Marmaris)akismet-2fcb28243f975bb512a587b829a23dfdD-Resort's jetty reaches out into the sparkling ocean, leaving you with nothing between you and the view (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)marmaris.JPGBourgainvillea overgrown in a Marmaris courtyard (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)Shaded courtyards in Marmaris old town are decorated with evil eyes and overgrown with flowers (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)The carefully preserved walls of Marmaris castle, dating back to 1044BCThe ramparts of the ancient castle, dating back to at least 1044BC, though walls were built on this site up to 5,000 years agoThe charming shopping streets of Marmaris marina (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)Hix on Marmaris marina (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)The hotel has killer views over the ocean (Picture: D-Resort Grand Azur Marmaris)D-Resort_Grand_Azur_Marmaris_Deluxe_Suite.jpgThe beach bar and restaurant at D-Resort Grand Azur Picture D-Resort Grand Azur)*Not* the company we went with, as ours had the Turkish flag on the parachute, but there was no chance we were going up with our iPhones in our pocket The jetty at D-Resort Grand Azur, Marmaris (Picture: Deborah Arthurs)Dont leave Marmaris without having a Turkish coffee. Ours was from the beach bar and restaurant on the sand at the front of the D-Resort hotel D-Resort_Grand_Azur_Marmaris_Indoor_Pool.jpgD-Resort_Grand_Azur_Marmaris_Steak_Restaurant_Terrace (1).jpgIMG_1515.jpgDetail on the wall at Steak and Bar restaurant at D-Resort Grand Azur in Marmaris Steak and Bar restaurant at D-Resort Grand Azur in Marmaris The jetty at D-Resort Grand Azur A glimpse at a traditional part of the Marmaris marina at duskThe charming, cool streets of Marmaris old town Breakfast was cucumber, watermelon, Turkish cheese and fresh honey scraped straight off the honeycomb
There are few days when it’s not a good idea to have an orgasm.
Orgasms are great. They release stress, they feel glorious, and they bring you closer to your partner.
But if there’s any day when it’s a brilliant day to have an orgasm, it’s today, 31 July, also known as National Orgasm Day.
You’ve probably already got your getting off routine down to a tee (up a little, curved finger, yep, keep going, keep going), so why not take today to try something new?
We’re not just talking doing it on the other side of the bed.
There are apparently 12 different types of female orgasm that are within the realms of possibility. Take a look at the list, take your pick, and challenge yourself.
1. Clitoral orgasm
The most common type of orgasm and the one that’s easiest to achieve… and yet too many women are putting up with minimal clitoral stimulation during sex as their partners prefer to thrust away.
Try oral focusing on gently licking and sucking the clit (we’ve got a handy guide to some ideas on what to do), and during sex use manual stimulation or a sex toy to keep the clitoris involved.
2. G-spot orgasm
Less common, but well known.
The expertise on this is pretty divided, as some experts insist the G-spot isn’t real, while other people claim to have had mindblowing orgasms purely from G-spot stimulation.
It’s easy to check if you get anything from G-spot touching. You’ll find it about two inches inside the vagina, on the front wall (not the back wall closest to your anus). Try massaging it with your finger in a come hither motion.
If it feels amazing, congrats, you’ve found your G-spot. If it feels meh, that’s fine too – there are plenty of other ways to get off.
3. Anal orgasm
Yep, that’s when you orgasm only through anal sex. It’s another controversial type of orgasm that not everyone accepts is ‘real’, but the anal walls are rich in nerve endings so anal can definitely feel pleasurable.
Plus there’s the emotional side of things – the intimacy, the care taken to make sure you’re comfortable – that can increase pleasure.
Go slow and gradual, starting with a finger and working your way up rather than going straight to putting a penis in your bum, and use plenty of lube. If it hurts, stop. If you’re not enjoying it, stop. You don’t have to do anal sex if you’re not into it.
4. Blended orgasms
Simple: A blended orgasm is when multiple areas of your body are being touched at the same time, so you can’t pinpoint whether just one sensation brought you to climax or if it was a combination.
You’ll need a partner that’s got good hand-eye coordination for this and the ability to multi-task, or you can get involved, dividing up areas of focus such as nipples, clitoris, and G-spot between yourselves.
5. Multiple orgasms
As LoveHoney’s sex and relationship expert Audrey Andrews explains, multiple orgasms can be ‘either sequential (when you orgasm, rest, and then orgasm again) or serial (one orgasm after another with no rest in between).’
Audrey advises trying a sequential style first: Orgasm, then take a minute to rest and enjoy the extra oxytocin (known as the love hormone, it is secreted during sex) flooding your brain. Then go back for round two!’
That’s when you orgasm in your sleep. It can happen thanks to a particularly vivid dream or just feeling deeply relaxed, and it can wake you up.
A sleepgasm doesn’t mean a partner should attempt sex with you while you’re asleep, as you’re unable to give consent.
Sleepgasms aren’t really something you can try, but that just happen on their own. You can try reading some sexy stuff or watching porn before bed to get you in the mood.
7. Cervical orgasm
This happens as a result of deep penetrative sex, as the penis or sex toy taps the opening of the cervix.
You’ll need to build up to this and be fully aroused, and be careful to avoid cervical bruising. Doggy style helps to ensure deep thrusts.
8. U-Spot Orgasm
‘The urethra isn’t just for peeing,’ says Audrey. ‘It’s actually surrounded by some of the hidden parts of the clitoris.
‘When stimulated, blood rushes to the erectile tissue that surrounds the opening, which can result in ejaculation or squirting.
‘Although you can buy internal urethral vibrators, you can also stimulate the area externally using a standard clitoral vibrator. The urethra can be very prone to infection, so do your research before you insert anything. Oh, and make sure to have a towel handy.’
9. A-Spot Orgasm
The A-spot is the ‘anterior fornix exogenous zone’, located right above the cervix, in the area of the belly button.
It’s tricky to reach, and unless you’re using lube it can be painful.
‘It is best reached after considerable foreplay has taken place, and with a generous amount of lube, so take your time before aiming for this kind of climax,’ says Audrey.
‘Get your partner to touch the A-spot with the pad of their finger or a toy, and then pull down across the front wall for a wake-the-neighbours style orgasm!’
10. Nipple orgasm
Nipple orgasms aren’t possible for everyone, so don’t feel rubbish if someone licking your nips does nothing for you.
For some people, though, breast and nipple play can be such a turn-on it brings on an orgasm all by itself, as it triggers the release of oxytocin.
Try edging to test out nipple orgasms.
Audrey advises: ‘Massage the area around your breasts, torso, and tummy to tease yourself, and encourage circulation around your chest. Then, circle and caress your breasts using a featherlike touch. Don’t touch your areolae (area around the nipple) or nipples until you are seriously aroused. Once you feel like you can’t wait any longer, run your fingers around your areolae and start to gently pinch your erect nipples from base to tip.
‘This should result in multiple waves of pleasure washing over you.’
Probably the least fun type of orgasm to attempt, a coregasm – also known as an EIO, exercise-induced orgasm – is an orgasm that’s induced by exercise, usually focusing on your core tummy muscles.
It can happen during exercise or shortly after, and happens as a result of all the feelgood hormones flooding your body when you’re physically exerting yourself.
Exercises that have caused coregasms:
A study by the University of Indiana asked people who’d experienced a coregasm what they’d been doing when it happened.
12. Expanded sexual response
ESR is a type of orgasm only experienced by some women, who are able to have multiple, prolonged, more intense orgasms that can also bring on flashes of light and colour in their vision, out of body experiences, and feelings of earthquake. Whoa.
Essentially it’s an orgasm had by someone who is able to achieve extra levels of pleasure beyond a standard orgasm. Their orgasms will last longer and feel much more intense.
Now, this is a good type of orgasm to lead into an important thing to remember: It’s entirely okay if you struggle to achieve any of the orgasms on this list.
Sexual pleasure is complex and intensely personal. What works for one person does nothing for another. There’s nothing wrong with you or your body if one specific thing gets you off, it takes a long time to climax, or you struggle to orgasm at all.
Focus on what feels good for you and give yourself permission to enjoy it. Sex should be fun – not a stressfest dedicated to feeling rubbish about what you ‘should’ be doing.
**ILLUSTRATION REQUEST** Reasons why I don’t like receiving oral sex (Almara Abgarian)**ILLUSTRATION REQUEST** Reasons why I don’t like receiving oral sex (Almara Abgarian)ellencscottcouple in bed
We’ve all had those days when we wake up feeling off our game.
Maybe it’s because you had one too many wines the night before, or because you were trawling through your ex’s Instagram posts until the early hours.
But what about those days when you really are ill, would you still slap on a smile and battle the commuters to the office?
According to new research released by the Office for National Statistics, yes, you would.
Apparently the number of sick days that UK workers take has fallen to its lowest on record – all because people are too worried to phone in sick, for fear of losing their jobs.
And I’m one of those people.
I’m 25, working in a busy environment full of chiming phones and daily deadlines.
Often I’m left with three people’s work at a moment’s notice.
It’s my dream job and I would never, ever call in sick. Except, most days, in the interest of my health, I definitely should.
I suffer from sciatica, which is essentially irritation of the sciatic nerve. It means I get shooting pains from my lower back and down my thighs, which often leaves me stooped over in agony. I first got it after being too cocky in a trampolining session during fresher’s week.
Sometimes I wake up wondering if I’ll be able to shower or even walk that day.
But it never crosses my mind to call in sick for fear of being told I’m skiving my duties.
If I did tell my boss, he would probably just say I’m too young to feel back pain and to get my act together.
And, because I have too much work to do, I can’t just take a day off because I hurt. Instead, I hobble around like someone thrice my age and hope no one jostles me, because it’s very likely I’ll hit the floor if they do.
If I don’t come in, the work doesn’t get done – and I’ll have to work overtime the next day, which would probably make me even more ill.
Interestingly, the study by the ONS found that back pain was the second most common reason for taking sick days. Except, this figure related to those aged 50 to 64-years-old – not spring chickens like myself.
Among people my age, the research noted a 2.4% rise in sick days since 2009, with mental health as the main factor. With 25 to 34-year-olds, 9.6% of sick days were taken because employees felt low.
In addition to my physical pain of sciata, I also suffer from PTSD and depression, and sometimes, I’m just not ‘me’.
My job is heavily focused on being happy and getting people to trust me, which is hard when I’m dealing with mental health issues. But again, it’s not worth the added anxiety that calling in sick would bring.
When it comes to mental health, you often don’t believe that your boss will understand what is going on inside your head, and that they’ll think you don’t have a ‘real’ reason for being off, except for ‘just being sad’.
I’d only take a sick day if some sort of excrement was emerging from every possible orifice, and it’s probably been ingrained in me from school.
The good kids got gold stars for 100% attendance, while the ones that didn’t turn up were punished.
Things need to change, because you shouldn’t feel like you owe it to your boss or the company you work for to come in when you’re unwell.
Employees should be able to take their managers aside and tell them how they’re feeling, if they have a medical condition, or even, that they just don’t feel OK.
I don’t want to be punished for being in pain, but until I find the strength to take a sick day, I’ll continue going to work – hobbling and with a fake smile on my face.
*illustration request* xx nightmare job interview stories*illustration request* xx nightmare job interview storiesallieabgarianwoman lying down
The competition is looking pretty fierce.
One lucky plant-eater will be crowned the UK and Ireland’s hottest vegan, which according to animal rights organisation PETA is ‘living proof that compassion really is sexy’.
The finalists have now been revealed, but only one male and one female contestant can win.
Have a look at the contestants below and don’t blame us if you feel yourself being pulled to the plant-based side.*
*Not that being vegan is about being physically attractive, before anyone jumps on us.
Disney channel actor George has appeared in The Bill and the series Evermore, and uses his time outside of work to promote positive change.
He has attended protests against the outerwear clothing company Canada Goose for their use of coyote fur, and been involved with vegan outreach project Cube of Truth.
Elisa comes from a family of butchers and says that her mission in life is to turn her dad vegan.
She’s a 21 year old dietitian from Cork and says that meeting a vegetarian for the first time in 2012 was the catalyst she needed to become vegan.
David loves beatboxing and can reel off reams of animal facts if you get him on the subject.
The 28 year old works for an organisation that fights food waste as their business development manager.
22 year old pilot Ciaran is from Cheshire and uses his job to promote the vegan lifestyle.
He talks to people about the benefits of veganism and is encouraging his employer to provide more vegan options and cut down on single use plastics.
Vincent is from Burton-on-Trent but previously lived in Dubai, where he rescued over 20 abused and neglected animals.
The 30 year old now has three rescue dogs. Adorable.
Scottish nurse Kirsten is from Edinburgh and keen to spread the word about veganism.
She also protests against places that keep animals in captivity for human entertainment, including zoos, aquariums and marine parks.
Sea saviour Mathew spends eight months a year with the marine conservation group Sea Shepherd.
He’s an activist and uses leafleting and dating apps to promote the vegan lifestyle.
Nuria Molins Larripa
Nuria is 22 and has been in London for five years. She moved from Tenerife when she was 17 to study fashion.
Of her decision to go vegan, she said: ‘I watched Gary Yourofsky’s speech. For me, it was a very emotional connection and I decided to go vegan mainly for my ethics.’
Kimberley decided to go vegan when she learned what goes on behind the scenes in the dairy and egg industries.
Her dream is to one day open an animal shelter with her husband.
Ben and his pup Nacho live in Cambridgeshire. The sales advisor credits documentaries What the Health and Dominion with giving him the inspiration to adopt a vegan lifestyle.
He said: ‘As an animal lover, I realised my actions weren’t aligned with my morals. I pretty much went vegan overnight and haven’t looked back since.’
Norfolk-born Alexandra is a nature lover and her environmental beliefs helped inform her choice of degree.
She said: ‘I’m studying politics in the hope that my words will one day change the current state of animal agriculture and environmental policies.’
Krystal is a teacher from Leighton Buzzard and has been vegan for eight years.
She loves vegan pizza and her cat Missy, saying: ‘She is my everything. I am a fully-fledged crazy cat lady!’
Kieran is from Brighton and has been vegan for four years.
He said: ‘Life is precious, so why would I choose to end a life for ten minutes of enjoyment on a plate? I always said I was an animal lover, but it was only at 21 years old that I made the conscious effort to have my actions reflect my morals.’
Katie is 26 and went from vegetarian to vegan after reading Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari while on her honeymoon.
The marketing manager and self-described ‘massive adventure seeker’ uses her own experience of turning vegan to help others thinking switching to a plant-based diet.
Professional drummer Jose says that music and animals are the two most important things in his life.
Born in California, he turned vegan after learning about the abuse of animals in agriculture, fashion and entertainment.
Support worker Cath lives in the West Midlands and loves her dog Walter.
She’s involved in online activism and blogging, and she made the switch to veganism when she learned about what is done to cows every day in order to mass produce dairy products.
The prize for the winner of the UK and Ireland’s hottest vegan is a luxury two-person cabin for five-night cruise on Germany and Switzerland’s Rhine and Moselle rivers during the Christmas markets, provided courtesy of Vegan Travels.
The two winners will be chosen by PETA and will be influenced but not decided entirely by the public’s vote.
PETA’s Director of International Projects, Mimi Bekhechi, told Metro.co.uk: ‘Our annual Hottest Vegan Competition is a celebration of those doing their part to end violence against animals and substantially reduce their carbon footprint, while enjoying all the benefits of a healthier body.
‘It’s a fun way to promote a vegan lifestyle – and many people who come to our website to vote end up staying to watch our eyewitness exposés and learn that chickens, fish, cows, and pigs feel pain and fear just like the animals we share our homes with do, yet they’re abused in ways that would be illegal if dogs and cats were the victims.
‘This year’s winners will be chosen based on several factors, including vote count, and will be announced by 13 August.’
You can vote for your favourite cruelty-free cutie here.
A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganA Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganhpwilliamsonPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest VeganPicture: Peta A Disney star, a pilot and a BUTCHER'S daughter battle it out to be crowned the UK and Ireland's Hottest Vegan
What do we see when we visualise Glasgow? Hard streets, tough pubs and double fried confectionery. Cliches as old as time itself.
But they couldn’t be more wrong. In fact, when we think of Scotland’s biggest and most vibrant city we should be thinking about trees.
At least that’s according to a new body of research that shows just how valuable Glasgow’s greenery is to the wellbeing of its citizens, as well as the general aesthetic appeal of a city historically known as ‘Dear Green Place’, and for good reason. With over 90 parks and public gardens ranging from the iconic Kelvingrove Park to a range of lesser known gems, its an urban reality vastly different from the stereotypical imagery of a permanently grey, unending concrete jungle.
But it’s how the city’s plants and trees contribute to boosting public health that could prove of more lasting importance.
The new work has found that healthcare costs are reduced by almost £12 per person due to the airs pollutants being absorbed by the surrounding vegetation, a total saving of £59.2m in 2015.
What that means in practical terms is less money being spent on treating avoidable air quality related issues such as heart disease, asthma, bronchitis and other respiratory illnesses. In fact, a similar figure can also be shown for Edinburgh (£10.47 per person), while the less densely populated Dumfries and Galloway in the borders can point to an even higher figure, with £14.55 saved per head in avoided health costs.
Although the figures are promising, they aren’t a cause for jubilant celebration just yet for Scotland, or the rest of the UK.
Despite 1.4 billion kg of air pollutants being absorbed by greenery, woodland and other general UK vegetation, it’s a figure that sounds slightly less impressive when put in context against a total amount of air pollution over five times as large.
Though the report’s authors at The Office Of National Statistics have come out as saying all those lovely trees won’t solve the UK wide air pollution problem entirely, it’s still making an important dent in a pretty terrifying problem.
Bridge over Kelvin river, Kelvingrove ParkBridge over Kelvin river, Kelvingrove Parkfranciscogarcia92
You don’t need a reason to have an orgasm. They’re glorious things to be celebrated.
But in case you did need an excuse, here’s one plus a load more.
The first excuse: Today, 31 July is National Orgasm Day.
The other excuses: All the health benefits of orgasms we’ve listed below.
1. An orgasm is an instant stress reducer
That’s because reaching climax floods your body with feelgood hormones such as oxytocin, which reduce stress.
Plus the process of reaching an orgasm distracts you from any worries or lingering things on your to-do list. It’s tricky to worry about how full your inbox is when your, um, filling your other inbox.
2. It’s good for your skin
Having an orgasm increases blood flow to the skin, which will help with reducing wrinkles and repairing damage. Brilliant.
The reduction of stress we mentioned earlier helps too, as a reduction of stress hormones lowers inflammation, which is connected to acne and redness.
Immediately after an orgasm you’ll get a glow thanks to getting your blood bumping, and longterm you could have smoother, blemish-free skin (although, sadly, no research has yet been done into how many orgasms you need to have to match the benefits of an excellent skincare routine).
3. Orgasms can get rid of headaches
And other aches and pains.
That’s thanks to the pleasure hormones released by orgasms – dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin – which also handily reduce the sensation of pain.
Just a warning though: Some people find that orgasms actually bring on headaches. It’s thought this is due to strenuous activity, and you can deal with any postcoital headaches by popping a painkiller before a bone sesh and following up your lovemaking with a drink of water and a lie-down. Sexy.
4. They *could* help with migraines
Anyone who’s been through the hell of migraines will jump for anything that promises to reduce the struggle.
While we wouldn’t suggest swapping medication for sex (if your medication is working for you, please keep using it), the links between orgasms and migraine relief are promising enough to make sex an option when nothing else is doing the trick.
In one study, 47% of people with migraines felt complete relief after an orgasm.
That being said, 49.1% felt no relief, and 5.3% said an orgasm made their migraine worse. So it’s a bit of a gamble.
Researchers compared the benefits of orgasm to that of medications and found that orgasms are a significantly less effective fix, but that when they do work to reduce migraine symptoms, they do so speedily.
Worth a go, right?
5. Having an orgasm will help you get to sleep
We all know sleep is incredibly important for our physical and mental wellbeing – so anything that helps us ease into sleep is brilliant.
Again, this benefit is all down to the hormones released by orgasm. Stress reduction will always help with sleep, while serotonin and norepinephrine – both released by orgasm – are important players in helping the body go through REM cycles.
Research has also found that the better your sleep is, the better your sex life is, so it’s a lovely symbiotic relationship.
6. Getting off can help your digestion
Yep, it’s that oxytocin again. The body is aaaall connected, and having increased oxytocin levels and lower levels of stress will mean your tummy works better, too. Congrats.
7. Orgasms aid muscle recovery
That’s thanks to the increased blood flow brought on by orgasm, and it’s why we recommend anyone training for a marathon spends some time having sex (alone or with a partner) on their rest days.
Increased blood flow will ease aching muscles and help the body recover from exercise more quickly, so treat yourself to an orgasm post-workout.
8. An orgasm can help you avoid infections
The hormones triggered by blowing the old sex trumpet boost your immune system, increasing your body’s ability to make protective antibodies against bacteria and germs linked to common illnesses.
That means that having plenty of orgasms will offer you some protection from getting sick, and will make your cold last a little less time than someone not buttering their crumpet.
Of course, you can’t treat your body like rubbish, whack in a few sex sessions, and expect to never get sick again. No orgasm is powerful enough to counteract a terrible diet, a lack of sleep, and having vaccinations.
But if a bug’s going round the office, it’s worth spending some time at home masturbating.
9. It’s good for your heart
When you have an orgasm, your peak heart rate tends to be the same as it would be during light exercise, such as walking upstairs. That’s nothing major, but it’s a little boost for your heart health.
The physical exertion used to get you to orgasm helps, too.
***ILLUSTRATION REQUEST*** Women describe their first orgasms (Violet Fenn)***ILLUSTRATION REQUEST*** Women describe their first orgasms (Violet Fenn)ellencscott(backgrounds have been changed) Credit: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk
It’s a Monday morning and I’m about to board the train to work. As the doors open, and just as I’m about to step in, a hand shoots out, grabs my wrist and drags me into the carriage.
An hour later, I’m waiting at a pedestrian crossing, the beeps start to sound and suddenly a man takes my elbow and pulls me across the road.
I pop into a coffee shop. I’m waiting in the queue, then someone from behind grabs my shoulders and pushes me towards the counter.
It’s not even 9am and already three different people have grabbed me, pulled me and pushed me. This is a pretty standard morning, but why are all these people touching me without asking?
I’m visually impaired, I was born with sight loss and I’m registered partially sighted.
On a good day, I can see a couple of metres ahead of me, sometimes I can recognise a face, text on my phone or read a street sign.
On a bad day, if I’m tired, stressed or it’s really sunny I can only see blurry shapes and colours.
I started using a long white cane last year because my sight deteriorated and my life got busier. I had started falling over a lot and bumping into things on my commute into work, and it really affected my confidence.
I’ve even started having panic attacks because I get so disorientated and scared when people suddenly touch me without warning.
I didn’t want to go anywhere on my own. So I reached out to Guide Dogs who gave me lots of training on how to use a white cane so that I could safely navigate around London.
The white cane means that everyone understands that I need a bit of space, it gives me information through vibrations and sound, it bumps into objects before I do and it helps me judge the depth of steps or pavements.
I love my cane as it has really helped me regain my independence, but there is one negative that I’ve started to encounter. People keep grabbing me!
I know that people just want to help. However, being grabbed, pushed, pulled or even touched without warning is disorientating, frightening and sometimes even dangerous.
People who grab rarely help me and often achieve exactly the opposite. Imagine how it would feel if you were suddenly pushed across a road or pulled into a train carriage?
Now imagine how it feels if you can’t see where you are going or who is doing it! I’ve even started having panic attacks because I get so disorientated and scared when people suddenly touch me without warning.
People who grab me assume I can’t do something, when usually I’m absolutely fine. Remember I was born visually impaired and I’ve had the training!
Grabbing actually prevents me from being independent. The most helpful thing someone can do if they encounter a visually impaired person or any person with a disability is to just ask.
Sometimes I do need assistance and when I do, I can ask for help. I definitely always welcome polite and respectful offers of help.
Usually I say yes please, but if I say no please respect my decision.
If someone asks me if I want assistance I can tell them how best to support me, and this means they can assist me safely and positively.
I’m never offended by someone asking me if I’d like some help. Strangers give up their seats for me, help me find things in supermarkets, guide me across unfamiliar roads, and generally make my life a lot easier!
I can go to work, socialise and volunteer because I know I can rely on the kindness of others when I need it, but I don’t want to be stuck at home again because I’m too scared of being grabbed.
So if you see a visually impaired person with a white cane or a guide dog and you think they might need some assistance, just ask and please don’t grab!
Follow my #CaneAdventures on Twitter and learn more about how I navigate life as a visually impaired person
It’s National Orgasm Day, and the perfect time to work on having more pleasurable climaxes.
Orgasms are amazing. They don’t just feel good, they have real health benefits for both your mind and your body.
They’re wonderful alone and with a partner, and they can completely turn around a bad mood.
If you want your orgasms to last longer, feel better, or simply occur more frequently, take a look at our list of pro tips.
1. W*nk more
Masturbation is a brilliant way of connecting you to your body. It helps you figure out what feels good and what works for you.
Once you’ve hit on the magic formula for making yourself come, you can instruct your partner(s) on how to help you get there.
2. Change it up
It’s easy for couples to slip into a routine with their sex lives, but by mixing things up, you could guarantee yourself (and your partner) some newly exciting orgasms.
One of the easiest ways to do this is about changing where you have sex.
Do you always do it in bed? If so, try it somewhere else – your kitchen, on the living room floor, in the bathroom or standing up against a wall.
3. Make sure you get enough foreplay
For an orgasm to occur, both vasocongestion (blood flow to the genital region) and myotonia (muscle tension) need to happen at the same time.
If you want a really intense orgasm, you need to be super turned on beforehand. More blood flow equals more sensitivity, and more muscle tension means a greater feeling of release.
If your partner acts like you’re inconveniencing them with requests for prolonged foreplay, consider whether they’re someone who you want to be having sex with.
4. Prioritise your needs
Accepting pleasure and making sure your own needs are met in bed is so important for having great orgasms.
For every person who’s been left unsatisfied after a sex session that ends when their partner has climaxed and promptly rolled over to go to sleep, this tip’s for you.
If you’re too worried about pleasing your partner, you won’t be concentrating on chasing your own orgasmic high. Learn to ask for what you want and take pleasure without feeling obligated to return the favour.
5. Do some exercise
Sex can be a workout in itself, but doing exercise increases blood flow to the genital region, making you more likely to want sex.
Also, competitive sports and the anticipation of a competition ahead have been proven to increase testosterone in women by 24%, raising their libidos.
6. Delay your orgasm
‘Edging’ or getting close to an orgasm but not allowing yourself to climax is another pro tip for making your orgasms more intense.
People who enjoy edging do so because they like the process itself, but they also enjoy even better orgasms as a result.
It’s all about getting to a pleasure plateau, then decreasing the amount of stimulation so you don’t quite reach orgasm. You can do this as many times as you like before finally allowing yourself to indulge in the big O. You can delay your orgasms on your own or with a partner, and while using sex toys or without them (it’s probably easier to do with a toy though).
7. Take risks (within reason)
Some people find the idea that they might get caught having sex incredibly exciting, because of the adrenaline spike that accompanies doing something risky.
Public sex comes with its own set of risks (indecent exposure is a crime), but if you want to get a thrill out of something that feels taboo, you can do it perfectly safely.
Sex up against your bedroom window, where you might be seen, is legal because it’s within the confines of your own home.
You can simulate other risky situations through role play, such as sex between co-workers or a boss and their secretary.
8. Be realistic
Forget what you see in porn, because only a quarter of women can orgasm from penetration alone.
If you don’t climax just from penetration, get your clit involved. Make sure you or your partner are stimulating your clitoris with fingers or a vibrator during sex.
9. Talk dirty… to yourself
According to the orgasm experts at sex toy retailer Hot Octopuss, this is an advanced masturbation tip that’s been reported to have explosive results.
‘Try treating yourself as you’d like a partner to treat you. And we don’t just mean using the physical techniques that you enjoy most.
‘Why not expand it into dirty talk too? Make lots of noise, tell yourself how hot you are, and even try masturbating in front of a mirror. It’ll give you a whole new view on what a sexy badass you are.’
10. Try a couple’s sex toy
There are lots of different sex toys specifically for couples on the market, so spend some time browsing with your partner and decide on one together.
You might want to try out a selection of different toys to find out what works for both of you. If you’re not familiar with couples’ sex toys, read reviews and choose something that’s marked as good for beginners or people who are exploring.
Now go forth, and have amazing orgasms.
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Staycations are great. Cheap, simple and free of any passport hell or familial relationship rupturing airport dramas. So why shouldn’t Scotland’s hard working rescue dogs get a look-in as well?
That’s the thinking behind a new initiative launched by travel agency Argyll Holidays and the Scottish SPCA.
There’s been a dramatic spike in domestic holidaymakers bringing their dogs with them as they explore the country, with a 56% increase over the past couple of years in the number of pampered pooches enjoying some downtime in the company of their owners.
So, they argue, it’s only right to give something back to the less fortunate canines without the same level of opportunity or comfort in their own day-to-day lives.
Just last week, a gang of pups were let loose on a Loch Lomond beach to mark the launch of a partnership that it’s hoped will bring in a minimum of £2,000 over the next year to support the SPCA’s work with Scotland’s most vulnerable and at risk dogs.
It’s a pretty simple scheme. For every one dog that stays at an Argyll Holidays venue, a donation will be made to match: a massive boon for a charity without access to either lottery or government funding.
Lisa Allan-Downie, Head of Marketing, at Argyll Holidays, said: ‘As a proud owner of two rescued Collies, Bonnie and Clyde, I understand that dogs are an important part of the family – and that means they’re part of the family holiday.
‘We’re excited to be partnering with the Scottish SPCA to promote our dog friendly breaks and give something back to furry friends that might not have the opportunity to go on holiday this year.
‘At Argyll Holidays, we’re welcoming more and more dogs to stay every year and we make sure that they have a pawsome time, with special dog bowls and some of the most spectacular dog-walking routes for them to enjoy.’
SPCA superintendent Sharon Comrie also spoke of her delight when chatting to Glasgow Live about the launch, saying: ‘Dogs really are part of the family and it’s great that they are so welcome to stay at the holiday parks.
‘We rely on the public to be able to continue our work rescuing and rehoming animals in desperate need of our help. Partnerships like this help us fund vital projects and day-to-day costs of running our rehoming centres.’
A pup-laden weekend away and an excuse to feel a well justified glow of good deed smugness. What’s not to like?
Meet The Scottish Rescue Pups on Summer HolidayMeet The Scottish Rescue Pups on Summer Holidayfranciscogarcia92(Picture: Paws Pet Photography/Argyll Holidays) A 56% upsurge in families taking their dogs with them on staycations across Scotland will result in leading animal charity, the Scottish SPCA, enjoying a new wave of donations. A group of four-legged friends were unleashed on Loch Lomond?s private dog beach yesterday (Sunday 29 July) as Argyll Holidays launched its new partnership which will see them raise a minimum of ?2,000 in the next year for the Scottish SPCA.(Picture: Paws Pet Photography/Argyll Holidays) A 56% upsurge in families taking their dogs with them on staycations across Scotland will result in leading animal charity, the Scottish SPCA, enjoying a new wave of donations. A group of four-legged friends were unleashed on Loch Lomond?s private dog beach yesterday (Sunday 29 July) as Argyll Holidays launched its new partnership which will see them raise a minimum of ?2,000 in the next year for the Scottish SPCA.(Picture: Paws Pet Photography/Argyll Holidays) A 56% upsurge in families taking their dogs with them on staycations across Scotland will result in leading animal charity, the Scottish SPCA, enjoying a new wave of donations. A group of four-legged friends were unleashed on Loch Lomond?s private dog beach yesterday (Sunday 29 July) as Argyll Holidays launched its new partnership which will see them raise a minimum of ?2,000 in the next year for the Scottish SPCA.(Picture: Paws Pet Photography/Argyll Holidays) A 56% upsurge in families taking their dogs with them on staycations across Scotland will result in leading animal charity, the Scottish SPCA, enjoying a new wave of donations. A group of four-legged friends were unleashed on Loch Lomond?s private dog beach yesterday (Sunday 29 July) as Argyll Holidays launched its new partnership which will see them raise a minimum of ?2,000 in the next year for the Scottish SPCA.