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- 03/07/19--08:42: _Seven top-rated bea...
- 03/07/19--09:04: _Subscription compan...
- 03/07/19--09:35: _Man, 85, proposes t...
- 03/07/19--22:00: _International Women...
- 03/07/19--23:12: _17-year-old’s aller...
- 03/07/19--23:27: _Topshop launches ne...
- 03/08/19--00:00: _International Women...
- 03/08/19--00:01: _Women won’t care ho...
- 03/08/19--00:03: _Gym holds a female ...
- 03/08/19--00:26: _Meet the woman who ...
- 03/08/19--00:29: _International Women...
- 03/08/19--01:00: _International Women...
- 03/08/19--01:32: _The most important ...
- 03/08/19--02:02: _Cafe launches decad...
- 03/08/19--02:27: _Give your pooch a l...
- 03/08/19--03:06: _Why do perfumes sme...
- 03/08/19--04:08: _A vegan afternoon t...
- 03/08/19--04:15: _When is Internation...
- 03/08/19--05:24: _Older people are ri...
- 03/08/19--05:56: _How to fight back a...
- 03/07/19--08:42: Seven top-rated beauty products you need to know about
- 03/07/19--22:00: International Women’s Day quotes, images and memes to celebrate
- 03/07/19--23:27: Topshop launches new animal print satin skirts for £35
- 03/08/19--00:03: Gym holds a female ‘takeover’ in honour of International Women’s Day
- 03/08/19--00:26: Meet the woman who gets turned on by gushing nosebleeds
- 03/08/19--00:29: International Women’s Day inspiring quotes from sportswomen
- Straight women have the lowest levels of sexual pleasure out of any demographic. They have fewer orgasms than men or women in same sex relationships.
- 45% of straight women do not usually orgasm when they have sex. That’s 45% of women don’t orgasm every single time – 45% of women don’t even orgasm most of the time.
- 80% of women cannot or do not orgasm from penetrative sex alone.
- Most depressingly of all, according to the Society of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists of Canada,10% of women will never experience an orgasm at all. Not once.
- 03/08/19--02:02: Cafe launches decadent milkshake inside an Easter egg
- 03/08/19--03:06: Why do perfumes smell worse on me than other people?
- To promote positive male role models; not just movie stars and sports men but everyday, working class men who are living decent, honest lives.
- To celebrate men’s positive contributions to society, community, family, marriage, child care, and to the environment.
- To focus on men’s health and wellbeing; social, emotional, physical and spiritual.
- To highlight discrimination against males; in areas of social services, social attitudes and expectations, and law.
- To improve gender relations and promote gender equality.
- To create a safer, better world; where people can be safe and grow to reach their full potential.
- 03/08/19--05:24: Older people are riddled with sexual diseases, apparently
When it comes to skincare and makeup, there is so much choice it can be a little overwhelming.
But whether or not you’re a die-hard beauty lover, there are a handful of products you need to know about – the ones that are top-rated among editors, bloggers, influencers alike.
From basic daily essentials, such as lip balm and hand cream, to quick-fix sheet masks, we’ve rounded up seven of the must-have beauty buys you need to know about.
And the reviews speak for themselves – so you can thank us later.
Boasting 4.5 out of 5 stars on Beauty Bay, this gentle exfoliating toner from The Ordinary is an absolute steal at £6.75.
Similar to the cult Pixi Glow Tonic, this toner is formulated with glycolic acid which does a great job at keeping breakouts, fine lines, dullness and congested skin at bay.
Its formulation includes a blend of ginseng and aloe vera for added radiance and soothing properties. With continual use it will brighten and improve your skins texture.
The Ordinary Glycolic Acid 7% Toning Solution, £6.75, beautybay.com
Sure, there are plenty of eyebrow gels to pick from. But we’re in a committed relationship with Glossier Boy Brow.
The small but mighty tube and teeny-tiny wand ensures your brows are tamed, without adding too much bulk, colour or staining the skin.
This will be your holy grail – especially for a for a no-makeup makeup day.
And you don’t have to just take our word for it, as it’s rated 4.5 out of 5 stars with over 2,000 reviews online.
Glossier Boy Brow, £14, glossier.com
For soft, non-greasy, nourished hands, Heath Hand Slave does a stellar job – even for the most weathered mitts.
It’s formulated with shea butter and pro-vitamin B5 to help keep skin soft, smooth, and healthy. And Pollustop, a secret anti-pollution weapon. it may be one of the greatest hand creams we’ve tried.
Not only is it efficient, it smells utterly divine thanks to its mix of lavender and mint.
Plus it also looks far more expensive than it is, with its sleek plastic (recyclable) packaging.
Heath Hand Slave, £6.99, amazon.co.uk
This pocket-sized beauty buy is a favourite here at Metro and Look Fantastic with a star rating of 4.5 out of 5.
And it’s not surprising as it’s one of the best lip balms we’ve tried.
It leaves even severely chapped lips soft and smooth. And it’s versatile too, so can be used to treat burns, abrasions, sore nipples, split ends, eczema, babies’ bottoms, and much more,
It will become your holy grail.
Dr.Lipp’s Original Nipple Balm for Lips, £12, lookfantastic.com
For a mask that offers instant results, you can’t go wrong with STARSKIN Purifying Liftaway Mud Face Sheet Mask.
This sheet mask has been infused with a layer of pink clay to deliver a deep cleanse and cocoon milk extract for soothed, hydrated skin.
All it takes is 20 minutes, for the mask to work its magic and give your complexion an instant boost.
One review claimed it offered ‘great preparation for a night out’ and ‘was soothing and clarifying’, leaving their skin ‘skin felt soft and fresh afterwards.’
STARSKIN Purifying Liftaway Mud Face Sheet Mask, £8.50, beautybay.com
The simplest of ways to help prevent cracked, dry cuticles is to moisturise regularly. But there’s one product in the beauty biz that gets the job done and quickly too, when your cuticles are in need of a little extra TLC.
Enter: Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover. This ickle blue-bottle, does exactly what it is says on the tin, helping to soften and remove overgrown cuticles, without breaking the skin.
You just apply the solution, massage it into the bed of the nails really well and then use a tissue to rub away excess skin.
Sally Hansen Instant Cuticle Remover, £5.48, amazon.co.uk
If your skin is sensitive, or not playing ball, Dr Sam’s Flawless Cleanser is what your skin needs.
The back-to-basics cleanser, was designed by London dermatologist Dr Sam Bunting, to help create and maintain healthy skin.
It’s gel like consistency melts into the skin when massaged, leaving no residue, or that dreaded tight feeling often associated with harsh or stripping cleansers.
It’s effective and well-formulated without fragrance, or foaming ingredients and well-priced too.
Dr Sam’s Flawless Cleanser, £16, drsambunting.com
7 top rated beauty products you need to know about
Only 1% of children’s books published in 2017 had a BAME (black, Asian, minority ethnic) main character, yet 32% of UK schoolchildren are of BAME origin.
So why should these youngsters grow up reading only about children who look nothing like them?
On World Book Day, as children are encouraged to dress up as their favourite book character, one book company wants people to think about the lack of characters that come in different skin tones.
Little Box of Books is a children’s subscription service that send out books only with characters from minority backgrounds.
They want youngsters to have more options on World Book Day so that almost a third of pupils don’t find it difficult to dress up as a character of their own ethnicity.
The company has also set up pop up shops in schools with costumes for children to dress as characters that look like them.
Director and founder of Little Box of Books, Lynsey Pollard noticed the lack of diversity when she read to her five-year-old child.
She tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Of course, children can wear whatever costume they want, they don’t have to dress up as someone of their own ethnicity.
‘But it’s about having the choice. World Book Day is an amazing celebration of the magical world of children’s books.
‘With increased representation of all children in books, including race, culture, disabilities and gender it could be even better.’
The organisation has put together a list of books with BAME main characters which include Julian is a Mermaid, Juniper Jupiter, Molly Rogers Pirate Girl and more.
‘It’s essential that you see yourself in the books you read,’ adds Lynsey. ‘It shows you’re important, you’re normal and you can be anything you want to be.’
Book subscription company sends you books with ethnic minority characters
Karl and Donna Von Schwarz have been married for over 65 years – but the romance certainly isn’t dead.
When Donna, 82, had to have heart surgery, Karl promised he would buy her a new engagement ring when she was better.
And last week, the 85-year-old followed through on his promise and even got down on one knee again.
The pair, who live in Youngstown, Ohio, U.S., were high school sweethearts and married in 1966, WFAA reported.
Since May, Donna has had several strokes, a brain bleed and open heart surgery but Karl has been with her every step of the way.
Now a wheelchair user, Karl knew he wanted to buy that engagement ring once she was healthy enough to go home.
The couple went to a department store and she picked out a ring, before Karl proposed and asked his wife to marry him again.
Their granddaughter Christina posted on Twitter: ‘My grandma has been very sick & we don’t know how much time she has left.
‘After over 65 years of marriage my grandpa got her a new ring and proposed to her again…. I don’t know why I’m crying in the club rn’
My grandma has been very sick & we don’t know how much time she has left. After over 65 years of marriage my grandpa got her a new ring and proposed to her again…. I don’t know why I’m crying in the club rn pic.twitter.com/PdIiZrLRhs
— ❃ tina ❃ (@christinacherie) March 3, 2019
Later she added: ‘I’m about to just start a thread of my grandparents because they’re my favorite humans on the planet.’
When the tweet started to go viral, she added a video of the minute her grandad got down on one knee again.
Since this blew up I’ll post the video too.. look how happy she looks omg pic.twitter.com/IYTrflvzFw— ❃ tina ❃ (@christinacherie) March 3, 2019
Karl Von Schwarz told WFAA by phone that it was easy to renew his vows.
‘It was great because it’s a gal that I’ve loved all of my life. It was very easy. You know, we’ve been together so long that we can’t stay apart really.’
Donna added: ‘It’s really beautiful. It’s gorgeous.’
Donna and Karl, you are couple goals.
close up of mature couple hands holding in meadow
That’s right girls, guys, and all you folk in-between – it’s International Women’s Day.Female paedophile nursery manager boasted to cop about sexual interest in babies
International Women’s Day, which falls on 8 March every year, is a blessed day on which we mark how far women’s rights have come over the years, take stock of how far we have yet to go, and generally celebrate feminism in all its multifaceted glory.
Things like the advent of contraception, women’s suffrage, and the fact that, since last International Women’s Day, the Eighth Amendment was repealed, making abortion legal in the Republic of Ireland, should all be celebrated loudly enough for anyone who’s not a feminist to know that they are on the wrong team.
So from Madeleine Albright to Sojourner Truth, we’ve put together some quotes from iconic feminists to celebrate.
And yes, it’s 2019, so of course enjoying International Women’s Day should also include a healthy dose of feminist memes…
‘Do you have a vagina? And do you want to be in charge of it? If you said ‘yes’ to both, then congratulations – you’re a feminist!’ – Caitlin Moran, writer
‘If the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world upside down all alone, these women together ought to be able to turn it back, and get it right side up again!’ – Sojourner Truth, activist
‘I think every woman in our culture is a feminist. They may refuse to articulate it, but if you were to take any woman back 40 years and say, ‘Is this a world you want to live in?’, they would say ‘No.’’ – Helen Mirren, actress
‘The best way for us to cultivate fearlessness in our daughters and other young women is by example. If they see their mothers and other women in their lives going forward despite fear, they’ll know it’s possible.’ – Gloria Steinem, activist and writer
‘I’m a feminist. I’ve been a female for a long time now. It’d be stupid not to be on my own side.’ – Maya Angelou, activist and writer
‘I raise up my voice – not so I can shout but so that those without a voice can be heard. We cannot succeed when half of us are held back.’ – Malala Yousafzai, activist
‘Who run the world? Girls.’ Beyonce, singer
Some excellent feminist memes
— Remi Cruz ✨ (@missremiashten) March 7, 2019
i’ll never understand girls who hate on feminism??? i mean-pic.twitter.com/zOpJYyMOX8
— lucy (@rendezvousroger) March 6, 2019
every time a man tries to educate me about feminism or give me “a opinion” about it pic.twitter.com/qvZtv2w2pV
— ً (@yeoj1n14) March 7, 2019
Feminism explained pic.twitter.com/2tK0sexGGH
— Aries Lady 🍁 (@_Suyasha_) March 6, 2019
Now, you know what to do – go be revolutionary.
Happy International Women’s Day 2019.
Huge Crowds Rally At Women's Marches Across The U.S.
A teenager is forced to tell strangers that she hasn’t been beaten up as her severe allergic reactions leave her face swollen and bruised.
17-year-old Kira-Shai Whitehead began suffering from the severe reactions – known as spontaneous idiopathic anaphylaxis – two years ago, with baffled doctors still unable to determine the exact cause.
Kira experiences bruised red lips, swollen, black eye sockets and cheek bones. She is regularly asked if she has been attacked as, during flare ups, her facial features would become disfigured.
Her parents Tim and Cheryl have admitted their daughter to hospital around 30 times over the past two years, as her allergic reactions require emergency medical attention before she goes into anaphylactic shock.
And the college student claims her teachers and nurses have even pulled her aside to ask if she’s being abused at home.
Kira-Shai – who was an aspiring model before her diagnosis – has spent months hiding away to avoid being questioned by strangers, but she is now sharing her story to raise awareness.
Kira-Shai, from Birstall, Yorkshire, said: ‘I’m always being asked by strangers if I’ve been beaten up as my allergic reactions affects my face.
‘Some medical staff and teachers have even been concerned that my parents have assaulted me.
‘When I used to go to school I remember teachers asking if everything was ok at home and if I get on with my parents, they were basically accusing them of beating me up, I was so angry.
‘And it was the same when I went to the hospital, as the nurses pulled me aside from my parents to ask about my home life.
‘My reactions are normally triggered by emotions, heat, air pressure, stress or solvents but it can be anything and doctors still have no idea why it started.
‘Now I have at least two severe reactions per month and won’t go longer than two weeks without needing to come back to hospital.
‘The reactions change each time and sometimes are more serious than others, I won’t know whether they’ll calm down or progress into a life threatening stage.
‘I’ve been in hospital for the past four weeks now as I had a severe allergic reaction which caused me to need oxygen to breathe and has since caused my eye to completely close due to being so swollen.
‘I’ve also been suffering from horrific stomach cramps which doctors can’t find the cause for either, they’re not sure if my allergies and my stomach issues are linked.
‘But I am staying positive and I’ve set up my own campaign ‘don’t judge a book by its cover’ as a lot of people have assumed I’ve been in a fight due to the appearance on my face when having a flare up.
‘That’s why I was so inspired to set up my campaign as it’s important to educate people.’
Her dad, Tim, a bath and plumbing manager, said: ‘Kira-Shai has been through such a lot in the last few years and at times, she has been scared to go out as she didn’t want people to see her black eyes and swollen lips.
‘But despite being in and out of hospital she has managed to raise awareness and has even set up her own campaign to educate others on how allergic reactions can affect the body.
‘We’ve been asked to leave the room at some hospital trips as medical staff question Kira-Shai about whether everything is ok at home.
‘She has undergone every test imaginable but we still don’t know what products or foods she needs to avoid if it’s even triggered by those.
‘It has been hard for us as a family with our daughter spending so much time in hospital but we’re just hoping we get the answers we desperately need.
‘She has recently had an MRI, CT and ultrasound scans which showed basically nothing but has just had an Endoscopy which we’re awaiting the results for.’
Kira-Shai fears doctors will never be able to get to the bottom of why she was diagnosed with spontaneous idiopathic anaphylaxis, but says she has learned to cope with the flare ups.
She added: ‘My reactions can come on at any time of the day whenever, there’s no pattern to it but I always try to avoid stressful situations now as this could cause a flare up.
‘When I’m not in hospital I do all the normal teenage things like my friends, I don’t like to let my allergies hold me back and now I’ve started to share my story the support has been amazing.’
A teenager has been forced to tell strangers that she hasnt been beaten up after her severe allergic reactions leave her face swollen and bruised
Topshop’s satin skirts have always been a big hit – they’re pretty, they’re comfy, and they’re always on trend.
And you know what’s also a big hit? Animal print. Which is why we’re so happy Topshop has now combined the two with a bunch of brand new satin skirts which feature zebra and leopard print. Amazing.
The fashion retailer has launched a range of new bias cut midi skirts, which alongside the animal print, also features lace-trimmed designs.
The new releases follow last year’s launch, when Topshop first introduced the satin midi skirts in a variety of colours – and they sold out in record time.
The new skirts cost £35 each, which, by Topshop’s standards, isn’t too bad at all.
So, we’re guessing these skirts will start rapidly selling out too – so you had better head to your local store or the website ASAP to get your hands on one.
But if skirts aren’t for you, Topshop also does some amazing animal print dresses.
We wrote about this snakeskin number last October.
The dress features a midi, sleeveless design with a plunging neckline and pleated skirt.
But unfortunately it’s a little pricey at £65 – but it could be the perfect pay-day treat.
Topshop satin skirts
Despite it being 2019, there is still a massive stigma around tattoos – and particularly women with ink.
There are so many negative connotations around women being covered in tattoos. Often they’re associated with being ‘crazy’ or being sexually promiscuous.
But these are horrible, judgmental opinions around beautiful body art that someone wants to decorate their body with, as a way of embracing who they are and loving themselves.
My tattoos make me feel empowered. I covered my body with things that I deem to be beautiful. What started as a couple of small tattoos soon turned to bigger, bolder pieces, and I feel the ink on my skin helps flaunt my personality.
My tattoos have given me the confidence to really discover who I am, and to express who I am.
I think my tattoos make me beautiful, unique and that they turn my body into a story.
This International Women’s Day, we should be celebrating women for their uniqueness, tattoos and all.
23-year-old Heidi, from London, got her first tattoo when she was 18, on her ribs to keep it hidden from her parents but also because it was something very personal to her.
She tells Metro.co.uk: ‘The most noticeable thing about the style of my tattoos is that they are only black (and occasionally grey) ink.
‘I waited around a year and half to get my next one because I wasn’t sure what I wanted and I wasn’t sure on what style of tattoos I wanted and it was something I felt I needed to be sure about.
‘I then met a friend who had these amazing handpoked tattoos and that really escalated my love because it showed me a style of tattoos I hadn’t ever been exposed to before. The style is called ignorant style tattoo and I have heavily mixed this in with ‘Russian prison’ style tattoos.’
Heidi says she didn’t always want to be covered in tattoos, it happened by accident and quite quickly simply because she fell in love with recreating and reclaiming her body.
She continued: ‘I’ve had some really negative experiences surrounding my tattoos and all of it seems to come from people I don’t even know at all, and almost always on public transport.
‘An OAP told me the other day I’d ruined my body and that’s not the first time that’s been said to me. It used to be really upsetting and now I just find it funny how concerned people that is really none of their business.
‘All I said to her was that if my tattoos are the things I regret most in my life when I’m her age then I think I’ve done pretty well.
‘I think the worst experience was a few summers ago when a man came up to me on the tube to ask me about my tattoos on my legs, it was summer and I was wearing a play suit so they were all on show.
‘A lot of the time I’m very happy talking to people about my tattoos but when people start to touch my body without consent that crosses a line.
‘He started touching my legs and the tattoos on my thighs and then tried to kiss me. That was extremely upsetting and demoralising.
‘I find being tattooed has given people the impression from the outset that I’m promiscuous and kinky and just sort of open to being touched and stared at.
‘Me having tattoos seems to have made people lose their manners around me which is insane to me. Just because I have tattoos it doesn’t mean I am suddenly not worthy of any form of respect.’
Heidi says her tattoos have made her start to love and appreciate her body again.
She added: ‘I think to me they say I’ve reclaimed myself and my body outside of the confines of what is deemed beautiful and ‘acceptable’. I adore my tattoos and my tattooed body.
‘As a woman with tattoos I’d like everyone to know I’m still going to look amazing in a wedding dress please stop telling me I won’t and that just because I have tattoos it doesn’t mean the world is granted unrestricted access to my body.’
32-year-old Louise, from Worthing, has two full sleeves from her shoulders to her fingers, two leg sleeves, her neck, her chest, her sternum and her back tattooed.
She started inking her body when she was 15 years old, but started small.
Her tattoos are mainly black and grey and occult based, and she has styles from blackwork to traditional, to mandala and sketch style.
She believes there is a stigma around tattooed woman, and as a mother of four feels it quite intensely as she faces judgment from other mothers and older ladies – however funnily enough she says all the negative feedback comes from women, not men.
Which is sad, because us ladies should be empowering one another, not pulling each other down.
Louise tells us: ‘When on holiday I’ve been told to cover up my tattoos as “I’m a mother” at the school I’ve had comments of “why would you have that out at a school” so I feel there’s a double stigma with tattooed mums.
‘With a social media account with a large following I get a lot of males presume I work within the porn industry because of my tattoos.
‘I have also found that people presume women with tattoos don’t have jobs and can’t be educated! It shocks them when I say I run my own business.
‘My tattoos really do empower me, I had a lot of body confidence issues before I started to get more coverage and now, I feel so much sexier and stronger as a female because my tattoos are covering the areas I have never exposed before.
‘They tell my story, even the ones I regretted have been turned into something I love. They are memories, stories, things I love and things that make people chuckle.
‘I would love people to just stop judging. We live in a world where we are embracing clothing styles, makeup styles, and lifestyles so why can’t we embrace tattooed people?
‘Or at least give them a chance to show we aren’t uneducated, we can hold a decent conversation, we aren’t sexual objects, and that sometimes women like myself get tattoos to be able to have more confidence in general so why not just ask us about them instead of turning noses up.’
Kara, 33, from Cardiff, has 11 tattoos right now, getting her first when she was 21.
She said: ‘I always wanted to be tattooed; I grew up with close friends in the music industry so tattoos were an art style that I thought looked incredible, and I loved the idea of getting art on my skin permanently, so it wasn’t a case of getting one and deciding I wanted more, I always wanted to be tattooed.
‘There’s definitely a stigma against people with tattoos in general, but because women with a lot of tattoos aren’t seen very often, we definitely get more attention – often negative – from the general non-tattooed public.
‘I think anything that deviates from the norm is going to garner attention because a lot of people don’t see differences as a positive thing.
‘When I worked as a nanny in London, at school pick up time a lot of mothers just plain wouldn’t talk to me during summer because they could see my tattoos, or assumed that I was an older sister instead of a childcare professional.
‘There’s a definite assumption that tattoos mean you’re not a “proper adult”, as if growing up means you stop enjoying things that make you happy.
‘Men definitely seem to think that because I’m tattooed, my body is up for grabs. I’ve had strange men grab my arm and when I’ve yelled at them, they’ve called me a bitch and said they were “just trying to read it”, as if that’s some kind of excuse for touching strangers.
‘When I’ve been in public with male friends who are a lot more tattooed than I am, they don’t get grabbed like that.’
Kara loves being tattooed, and says her ink is a part of her.
She continued: ‘I don’t know that me being tattooed specifically empowers me, I think that it’s just that being tattooed makes me feel more myself, and being myself makes me feel empowered.
‘If they say anything about me, I would hope that they say I choose really talented tattoo artists.
‘People are going to think what they want to think about women with tattoos, but I’d like to see society as a whole being less small minded about people with tattoos.
‘Having tattoos doesn’t make someone less able to do a job, it doesn’t mean their bodies are public property. We’re all pretty regular, we just like having art on us.’
Beth Ashley, 22, from Surrey, has nine tattoos. One on her sternum and she’s building a sleeve with the rest. They are all heavily detailed and shaded with intricate line work – all by the same artist.
She said: ‘I got my first tattoo when I was 19, and I felt empowered having art that has something to do with my passion on me – so I needed more of that. I was also super surprised by how easy the process is – its definitely not as painful as people make out and it can even be quite relaxing, so that encourages me to get more of them.
‘I’d always wanted at least a sleeve, since I was about 12 years old. It was actually only last year, though, that I decided I wanted to be more covered, and wanted to go onto my legs too.
Beth feels there is a lot of stigma around women being tattooed.
She explained: ‘For some reason, for women, it’s still seen as a sort of taboo.
‘Loads of my male relatives are heavily tattooed and never receive any comments about it, but some of my older family members will complain about my tattoos or tell me not to get more of them.
‘I’ve had comments from random strangers (always men) in supermarkets as well, always saying stuff like “you’d be pretty if it wasn’t for all those tattoos”.
‘On the flip side, there are a lot of men who appreciate my tattoos, but they’re normally into the culture of tattoos themselves.
‘There have been men in bars who’ve said stuff about me looking like I “like it rough” because of my tattoos. I’ve also had some first dates where men have assumed I’m into BDSM purely based on me having ink.
Beth says her tattoos empower her. She continued: ‘Having art permanently added to my body makes me feel like a walking gallery of some of my favourite images, symbols and messages that are close to me.
‘I got my first tattoo, a typewriter, when I got my first writing job. One of my tattoos in particular, the roses on my sternum, helped me to feel sexy again after I left an abusive relationship.
‘My tattoos have got me through a lot and helped me to feel myself, and I’ll continue to get them added to mark milestones or as an act of self care.
‘Women with tattoos are human. They deserve to be respected and not hyper sexualised or considered to be rough, or damaging their bodies. They’re celebrating their bodies in a way that’s personal to them and that’s something to be appreciated.
KT is 24 and is from East London. She has 40 tattoos, covering her back and her leg. They’re all different styles: traditional, botanical, hand poke, watercolour, blackwork.
She said: ‘After getting one, I knew I wanted more as it allowed me to change parts of my body I previously didn’t like.
‘I knew I always wanted a lot of tattoos, but I didn’t think I’d be this covered this soon!’
KT feels there is a stigma around tattooed women.
She continued: ‘Comments online can be really harsh and the everyday sexism you encounter as a tattooed woman is draining.
‘I get stopped in the street/while shopping/while out anywhere and while most experiences are nice – people complimenting/asking where I got them done – you do get leered at by men specifically, and you can feel judging looks wherever you go.
‘In summer months I’ve had guys in groups walk past me and shout things like “nice tattoos” which, while on the surface is harmless, makes me really self-conscious and embarrassed to have my tattoos on show.
‘I have people touching my arms/legs without asking and demanding me to show them my others. As someone with bad anxiety I find this really hard and often end up covering my tattoos even if I personally want them to be on show.
‘I think women do get seen as ‘crazy’ or ‘wild’ if they have lots of tattoos, which drives me mad as I’m incredibly introverted and shy, I just like tattoos!’
KT adds that her tattoos empower her ‘greatly’, explaining: ‘I love every one of them as they are helping me reclaim my body bit by bit.
‘I’ve always struggled with body image and by getting tattooed in places I previously hated, I can now say I love those parts of my body because I’ve made them beautiful and I carry some of my favourite artists’ work on my body.
‘I get tattooed so that my body better represents how I feel inside. They make me feel so much more myself and with each new one I get, I feel more at peace with being me.
‘My tattoos include wildlife/flowers, several vegan-related things, lots of band references/tributes/lyrics – they all say something different about me as a person and who I want to be. I love having reminders of things or people that I love on my body as I can always carry them with me.
‘I would like people to know that women with tattoos are not there for you to look at whenever you please. Just because a woman has their tattoos on show doesn’t mean she wants to be gawped at, pointed at, touched or talked about.
‘Polite admiration from afar is fine, but we do not have tattoos for anyone but ourselves.’
International Women's Day: Women with tattoos
It’s official – caring is the new black.
In recent years, it has become increasingly important for brands to stand for something – or at least appear to – and with feminism making its way firmly from the fringes to the mainstream, ‘women’ and our ‘issues’ are hot marketing property.
Once unfashionable celebrations like Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, have become an annual competition of companies attempting to out-woke each other with slogan tees and water bottles, initiatives, panels and workshops.
Whilst the new-found concern for societal ills (often created by the corporations themselves) is welcome, it remains bitter-sweet.
Brands are, of course, going to brand but he cynicism doesn’t dissipate because clothing made unethically by women in sweatshops now comes with a free badge of Rosie the riveter in various different skin tones.
Profit is still the priority – something that is often maintained by exploiting women’s labour. Only, being shafted on a day dedicated to your own empowerment stings even more than on a regular one.
‘I’ve been asked to do a two hour radio show on the theme of International Women’s Day,’ tweeted author and columnist Rebecca Reid recently. ‘For free.’
Understandably disgruntled by the idea of working for no money by the BBC, she instead offered to speak on the phone for a shorter period as opposed to the entire two hour show – they declined.
The issue of skin deep diversity — inclusion that skims over implementing the change companies pretend to advocate for with optics that infer it has — has become an epidemic.
The devaluation of women’s work seems, ironically, most rife on International Women’s Day. As it edges closer, so do the unpaid requests.
Initiatives who claim they feel compelled to highlight female empowerment gleefully side-step addressing one of the biggest barriers to actual equality – equal pay.
‘Companies are exploiting International Women’s Day!’ award winning playwright Bola Agbaje chimed. ‘The amount of requests to work for free to celebrate women isn’t productive. Set aside a budget, pay people accordingly. Make sure women can sustain themselves. That’s how you support women!’
What is usually a slap in the face, feels like a punch in the gut during these women-themed day celebrations.
Just last year, my-co author and I were contacted by a brand about a potential collaboration ‘celebrating women.’ Given the campaign’s apparent ethos, it hadn’t even occurred to us we could be shortchanged.
But before we could respond, an influencer got in touch and told us she had also been contacted by the brand. She asked us what our proposed fee was, whilst outlining her own fee, revealing we had been asked to do the same amount of work for approximately £5,000 less.
When we confronted the brains behind the campaign — a woman who prided herself on the importance of ‘women supporting women’ — she offered no meaningful response or rebuttal.
To add insult to injury, they had expected us to partake in a ‘money talks’ panel on the pay gap and ‘transparency’. In the end, we declined the offer, but many women simply aren’t in a position where they are able to walk away, which is miles away from any type of empowerment.
But it is the logical conclusion of brands increasingly searching for a ‘cause’ they are entirely disconnected from.
The company in question clearly hadn’t even read our book, which dedicates several thousand words to highlighting the continued underpayment of black women.
They didn’t care about what our values were, rather the ability to piggyback off of our message without needing to engage or even implement the ideals they wanted to buy (on the cheap, mind) proximity to.
The issue of skin deep diversity — inclusion that skims over implementing the change companies pretend to advocate for with optics that infer it has — has become an epidemic.
And alongside brands casting plus size models to advertise clothes in sizes they don’t sell and make up companies boasting about shades of foundation they don’t stock offline, International women’s Day brand initiatives that exploit and underpay the women they aim to celebrate, are a sinister part of the sham diversity scam.
More about International Women's Day
What is International Women’s Day?
International Women’s Day takes place on 8 March each day and is a celebration of women, whilst also raising awareness of what needs to be done to achieve gender equality.
The first International Women’s Day event took place in 1909 and in 1975 it was adopted by the United Nations, who have set each year’s theme since then.
This year’s theme is #BalanceforBetter, which encourages us to take action to create a more gender-balanced world.
What is hypergamy (golddigging)? (I)
DW Fitness First is changing its name to DW Female First for one day only in an International Women’s Day ‘takeover’.
The move is aimed at redressing the gender imbalance in physical activity in the UK and is meant to inspire more women to get physically active.
The UK-wide celebration, in collaboration with Reebok, will see 120 gyms run full schedules of female focused classes and workouts all day, encouraging women to get confident by trying something new in the gym space.
The fitness company has said that men can gift their membership to a female spouse, friend or colleague for the day in a bid to inspire them to visit the gym or try out a class.
In London’s Bishopsgate, the gym will host a packed schedule of empowering female-orientated activity – including a dance-inspired workout class and workshop led by professional dancer and Reebok Ambassador Danielle Peazer.
Plus Team GB athlete Perri Shakes-Drayton will lead a women’s running group and host a workshop, supported by England Athletics.
The takeover comes following a recent Mintel report into health and fitness in the UK, which revealed a ‘massive gender imbalance in physical activity levels in the UK’ and follows US studies revealing that women feel insecure about going to the gym.
The figures show that 58% of women feel they are being judged for using equipment incorrectly and 65% avoid the gym altogether for fear of being judged.
‘We want to re-address the gender imbalance in gym use this International Women’s Day,’ says Tim Andrews, Head of Gym Floor Experience at DW Fitness First.
‘We know that we have 15% more male than female members, so want to shine a light on these females and allow them to try classes and boost their confidence in a gym space without any feelings of intimidation.’
Creating spaces for women in traditionally male environments is a really positive step towards real inclusion in the fitness world.
Women working out in an exercise class
This is Kinky Characters – a new series that explores unusual fetishes and the people who like them.
Last week we spoke to John, a civil servant from Croydon who loves being carried by women who wear big watches.
Today, it’s all about blood play, known as hematolagnia.
Bonnie, a full-time artist in her 30s who makes avant-garde fetish adornments, has a very specific blood kink – nosebleeds – which she often gives herself with a scalpel.
Although considered a BDSM fetish, blood play lies within the ‘edgeplay’ category – meaning the kink is generally considered unsafe due to its extreme nature.
There’s a variety of types – from period blood and ‘sucking blood out of tampons’, knife play and virginal fantasies of women bleeding ‘for the first time’ (note – this does not happen to all women), to nosebleeds and vampirism.
Research on blood play is scant, but it’s not a new topic; one study dates back to 1964, and investigates the urge of ‘sucking or drinking’ blood.
Out of the many fetishes out there, hematolagnia is considered so taboo even porn sites stay away from featuring it. One popular site has just 19 results for ‘blood’ (none of which actually seem to feature the fetish), while another has zero results.
Dive into Tumblr accounts however, and you’ll find graphic pictures of people bleeding from their mouths, blood running down throats and blood-filled bathtubs. Some blood play fans turn to forums to chat about their fetish or to ask for advice from the more experienced.
We ask Bonnie why she loves nosebleeds and how others have reacted to it.
Tell us about your nosebleed fetish
When I was at school, I saw a kid get a nosebleed in the playground. I was really fascinated, but also extremely jealous – I wanted so badly to have one myself.
My former partner and I have taken photos of us kissing while I had a nosebleed. It’s not exactly easy to introduce, because I have to give myself the nosebleed first by cutting the inside of my nose with a scalpel.
Without the constraints of reality, I would like to give someone a nosebleed with my mind. Not a small one either, but a gush of blood.
Similarly, I’d like to be able to have one myself by sheer will.
What is it about nosebleeds that turn you on?
Mainly the look of them, there’s a feeling of drama, like something might be really wrong with the person who has it.
It also looks quite fierce.
It’s a combination of vulnerability and strength. It’s hard for me to pinpoint what it is exactly – I just think it looks incredible. If I have one myself it feels empowering.
I like the feel of it when the blood first starts to come out, like a release and I also like tipping my head back and feeling it run down my throat. I like the taste, the way it feels.
I don’t masturbate during a nosebleed, but I might use the memories afterwards.
Is it only nosebleeds or is blood in general a turn-on?
Blood is also a turn-on but nosebleeds especially.
It has to be in the right context; an accident or something like that wouldn’t work for me. It has to be either fantasy or if it’s in real life, there has to be an element of consent.
Periods are not a turn-on. Vaginal bleeding maybe, but not mensuration. Living with a uterus while not wanting one kills off any sexual feelings for what comes out of it.
Have you ever done any other form of blood play?
I did blood play once with an ex and I didn’t really get off on it.
Things turned out very badly between us and I still have a prominent scar from it, which has put me off wanting to do it again. I’d be happier to just blood play with friends, but haven’t found guests for that particular kind of tea party as yet.
I don’t have any interest in smearing blood.
Smearing seems to be more of a rebellious act, whereas I’m more interested in the release of blood flow. That’s why I’m also not so interested in blood play.
It’s not a turn off exactly; I just want to see blood pouring.
Once it has stopped pouring and it dries, I don’t have much interest. It’s not a very sustainable way to play.
How do people react to your kink?
I haven’t had a partner with a particularly strong positive or negative reaction to my fetish.
I’m a pretty out-there individual in general, so it’s just one of my many quirks.
I’ve been with my partner for over 12 years and they are very aware of it as I’ve never exactly been quiet about it. They say it’s just a part of me.
I’m pretty sure most of my friends know about my fetish too. I had a montage of photos of my nosebleeds for my Facebook profile picture for a while – that sort of got the message across.
What’s the best nosebleed you’ve ever had?
I wouldn’t say this fetish is intrinsically sexual, so I don’t have any sexual scenarios to draw from. I do remember that I was writing a birthday wish for an online friend so I thought why not do it in nosebleed blood?
I cut the inside of my nose with a scalpel and the blood really gushed out everywhere. It made for a cute photo and I had ample material to write with.
I used to have a ketamine addiction and during that time I could get nosebleeds very easily because the inside of my nose was always raw.
That’s when I had the best nosebleeds.
Once, I woke up because my nose had ruptured and there was blood pouring down my throat. It was just about the nicest way to wake up that I could think of – it tasted like sweet chestnuts.
Do you think that people are judgemental of unusual fetishes?
People will always be judgemental of what they don’t understand, it’s human nature. There is always going to be something that’s considered taboo.
The vast majority of people have some kind of fetish, no matter what they say. It’s part of natural psychosexual development to pick a few up along the way into adulthood.
I enjoy it and I don’t have any negative effects from it.
I don’t feel embarrassed or ashamed about my kink; it doesn’t have any moral complications and I only need myself and my nose to practice it.
Do you have a nosebleed fantasy that you haven’t yet done that you would like to do in the future?
Not one that is logically possible. Most of my fantasies are fantasies because they can’t be re-created in reality.
I used to have this recurring fantasy about someone special, where I would whisper in their ear and blood would start pouring from their nose.
Do you have any other kinks?
Honestly, there are too many to list.
Off the top of my head, in the same vein as nosebleeds, I have a medical fetish, dental fetish and ero-guro (eroticism of the grotesque).
I don’t watch porn about nosebleeds – I’d rather lucid dream it – but I do enjoy heavy gore in horror movies though, ones where it literally rains blood.
Do you have an unusual fetish?
Want to tell us about your sexual preferences or odd kinks?
Drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to be considered for upcoming episodes of Kinky Characters.
It’s March 8, and you know what that means – International Women’s Day is here!How to say Happy International Women’s Day in 16 languages
However, on days like today, it’s important to take stock of how far women’s rights have come, and mark the achievements of the women who have gone before us and, in many ways, paved the way for our success.
When it comes to female athletes, who’ve worked in a notoriously sexist field, this sentiment is particularly strong, so we’ve put together some badass quotes from women all over the world of sport.
Donna Orender – basketball player
‘Women: When we team up we are incredibly pwoerful. Find someone to team up with … Our voices collectiively really do make a difference and change and perspective is worth fighting for.’
Michelle Payne – jockey
‘It’s such a chauvinistic sport, a lot of the owners wanted to kick me off. Everyone else can get stuffed [who] think women aren’t good enough.’
Serena Williams – tennis player
(After she was asked about being considered ‘one of the greatest female athletes of all time’) ‘Well, I prefer the words “one of the greatest athletes of all time”.’
Bethany Hamilton – surfer
‘Courage, sacrifice, determination, commitment, toughness, heart, talent, guts. That’s what little girls are made of; the heck with sugar and spice.’
Michelle Wie – golfer
‘We’re all just playing our own game. I don’t see it as a rivalry. We’re just trying to play our best.’
Katie Taylor – boxer
‘I want to tell girls, it’s not about make-up and how you look that’s important; you are so much more than how you look.’
Emma-Jayne Wilson – jockey
‘There is a perception among many trainers and owners that women aren’t as strong riders as men but I disagree. My goal was to be one of the strongest finishers out there — and now I am. I set out to prove that we are just as good, if not better than the boys.’
Maria Sharapova – tennis player
‘Just like in any field, women have to endure and ultimately overcome challenges or misperceptions. Women are continuously judged for outward appearance by the media and the public — so projecting confidence in your own personal power and strength is paramount to redirecting that focus.’
Anna Kournikova – tennis player
‘There are a lot of pretty girls. I am a tennis player first of all, that is why I am here, and if wasn’t producing results no one would notice me.’
Diane Crump – jockey
‘A horse doesn’t know whether the rider on his back wears a dress or pants away from the track.’
Jackie Joyner-Kersee – track and field athlete
‘Girls playing sports is not about winning gold medals. It’s about self-esteem, learning to compete and learning how hard you have to work in order to achieve your goals.’
Chantal Sutherland – jockey
‘I want to see more girls coming in to the sport. There were actually a lot in Canada when I was riding there, but we can let girls know that they can be jockeys. And if they can’t be jockeys, why can’t they be owners or trainers? We need to invite girls in.’
Billie Jean King – tennis player
‘Ever since that day when I was 11 years old, and I wasn’t allowed in a photo because I wasn’t wearing a tennis skirt, I knew that I wanted to change the sport.’
Wilma Rudolph – sprinter
‘‘The triumph can’t be had without the struggle. And I know what struggle is. I have spent a lifetime trying to share what it has meant to be a woman first in the world of sports so that other young women have a chance to reach their dreams.’
Mia Hamm – football player
‘Somewhere behind the athlete you’ve become and the hours of practice and the coaches who have pushed you is a little girl who fell in love with the game and never looked back… play for her’
Julie Krone – jockey
‘If the stable gate is closed, climb the fence’
Triumph of feminism 'could be leading to a rise in homophobia'
It’s International Women’s Day and this year the theme is Balance is Better.
But throughout their education, kids are brought up hearing mainly about men.
Most of the books we study at school were written by men and we focus on men when it comes to history.
We need to do more to ensure that the women of the past are not forgotten in history.
One woman is trying to change that.
Becky Laxton-Bass runs tours of London that focus solely on women.
The Women of Westminster tour is the first experience for people to learn more about women around London who worked in various areas.
Becky has been a tour guide for four years now and she launched the first tour last year for IWD, to coincide with the Vote 100 celebrations to mark a century since women were given the vote.
She explains: ‘I think women are underrepresented in the way history is taught in schools. I did a history degree and throughout the year, there was one course that was about women. It was the only one available in three years.
‘People walk past these memorials to women and don’t notice them. That needs to change. When we visit cities, we need to go to the places that remember women.
‘We need to make sure women are there when we are talking about history.
‘We had the anniversary and I wanted to keep that conversation going. I didn’t want it to feel like women have had their year and that is it.’
Since the first tour last year, Becky has adapted the route, including more stories and has launched Women of London – a company focusing on historical tours with a solely female angle.
At the minute, they provide one tour around the Westminster area but they hope to launch a tour in the East End of the city later this year.
The tour, which lasts about two and a half hours, covers women in literature, women during the first and second world war, female royalty, feminist art, female campaigners and women in healthcare.
Becky explains: ‘We talk about women thematically. We start at Agatha Christie’s memorial and we talk about women who do have memorials and the women who don’t but who were still important in this area.
‘At Agatha Christie’s, for example, we talk about Jane Austen, the Bronte Sister, Virgina Wolf and J.K. Rowling.
‘We don’t just cover modern queens like Elizabeth and Victoria, for example and healthcare is not just about Florence Nightingale – we talk about Edith Cavell and Elizabeth Garrett Anderson, who was the first female doctor.’
Becky is even more excited for the East End tour which will tell the story of women who she feel are even less well-known.
She adds: ‘When I first started as a tour guide, the Jack the Ripper tour was the most popular tour that we ran. I ended up not doing it because it sounded so strange.
‘I don’t want to think of Jack the Ripper and glorifying a serial killer. My aim for my tour is about the women, where they came from and how society let them down. I want to show what the problems were in society at that time.
‘We also talk about the East London suffragettes. People know the story of Christabel and Emmeline but not necessarily Sylvia.’
This week, Becky is running a series of tours for IWD, looking at the history of the event as well as the women in the area.
Beyond IWD, she runs tours everyday at 10am and 2pm but pre-booking is required as she does not run the tour without bookings.
At the minute, she leads five or six tours a week and says that the reception has been incredible.
She hopes that she will be able to expand the range of tours on offer, and in the future, she will be able to donate a percentage of the profits to charities that support women and girls.
She adds: ‘I want to work with schools as well and get them to London for day trips. When I was at school I learnt about the suffragettes and then Henry VIII’s wives and that was it really.
‘It’s really inspiring. When I finish the tour, I just feel like I want to go out and do something. It’s great not just to talk about these women but also to have people interested in hearing about them.’
The group also posts a daily #OnthisdayinWomensHistory on their Twitter account, so if you can’t make it to a tour, you can learn more about women who have been forgotten in history there.
Let’s bring these women back into the public eye.
It’s International Women’s Day!
Despite the best efforts of a lot of shops, IWD is not a gift oriented celebration.
Probably a good thing, given how much of the produce we buy is a result of unfair working conditions for women in less economically developed countries. But there is something that you can give to the woman in your life in celebration which is entirely appropriate.
Some very depressing statistics:
There are plenty of things for women to worry about in terms of equality, from the statistic that women do 60% more domestic labour than men to the fact that 1 in 4 women will experience sexual harassment or assault in her lifetime. But the pleasure gap is a very real problem to.
For context, 95% of men said that they orgasm usually or every time they have sex. So in the bedroom we are decidedly unequal.
A recent spate of articles suggested that we should stop obsessing over having orgasms and learn to enjoy non goal oriented sex.
I understand the logic – nothing makes you less likely to climax than worrying about it and obsessing over it. But I think the idea of forgoing orgasms, not thinking about them and being pleasantly surprising is getting off too lightly. Pun intended.
If you are having sex and the male partner is having an orgasm, the female partner should be having one too.
Sure there are reasons why a small percentage of women cannot orgasm, but talking in terms of the majority that is not the case. 90% of women will orgasm in their lifetime, and therefore 90% of women are capable of having an orgasm.
Advice websites are strewn with questions from women who explain ‘I can orgasm when I masturbate, but not during sex.’
The reasons for this are generally speaking either because the person you’re having sex with lacks the skills to make you come, or because they aren’t trying.
You shouldn’t feel like a failure if you can’t come from sex, but your partner should feel a hefty sense of guilt if they haven’t at least offered to try. Sex does not stop when a man ejaculates.
Afterplay is just as much of a thing as foreplay.
How to make your partner come
Try to have sex when you’re sober or have only had a couple of drinks, as being drunk can dull the sensations.
Discuss what your partner finds arousing. Does she love oral sex, or does it make her feel vulnerable and embarrassed?
Ask her to show you how she masturbates and observe what she’s doing, then emulate it. You can also offer to assist by touching her while she touches herself.
Try doing it with the lights out if she’s self conscience.
Impress upon her that there’s no time restriction, you’re not going to get tired or bored – you want to do this because giving pleasure to her makes you happy.
If in doubt, use a toy. A bullet vibrator is an easy add into your sexual routine, or request to bring whatever toy she masturbates with into your bedroom together.
There is no shame in struggling to make your partner orgasm. We all have different needs when it comes to reaching a climax and for some people it is more complicated than others. But there is shame in not bothering.
Women have sexual identities. Women experience sexual pleasure. Women, broadly speaking, want to come. Not putting in the time and effort to make sure that your partner has an orgasm every single time that you have sex is unforgivable.
She might not want to come – if she has an early start the next morning or already feels satisfied. There is no obligation to make sure that she comes every single time, but there is an obligation to make sure that she has the option.
If you’ve fallen into a sexual routine where you orgasm and she does not, it is not too late. Make the effort. That’s honestly the most feminist thing you could do this International Women’s Day.
Let’s be honest, Easter is all about the chocolate.
So much chocolate, all the chocolate, the more chocolate the better.
But are we getting a bit bored of the humble Easter egg?
Is spherical, hollow chocolate no longer enough to float our boats?
Whether it’s flat-pack chocolate bunnies, innovative ruby chocolate, or chocolate shaped like an actual egg sandwich, brands are bending over backwards to keep you excited about fulfilling your sweet tooth this Easter.
But of all the wacky innovations, we may have found the best one yet.
The Little Dessert Shop in Wolverhampton has launched an extra-special product – a milkshake that is served inside an actual Easter egg.
Yes, you read that right. Instead of drinking your milkshake out of a boring old glass, this Easter you can drink one out of a solid chocolate egg. It doesn’t get much more decadent than that.
And great news if you like Maltesers. The Malteser ice cream shake is topped with whipped cream and crushed Maltesers, and the whole thing is encased in a giant Maltesers egg and finished with a drizzle of chocolate sauce.
Our mouths are already watering.
The sugary creation costs £4.65 and should satisfy for chocolate cravings for the entire Easter weekend.
It’s available until 31st April, so it’s probably time to start looking at trains to Wolverhampton.
Milkshake in an Easter egg
It’s anyone’s dream holiday – spa treatments, a butler service and excellent food – except at this particular hotel, all the guests are dogs.
Having trouble avoiding the pleading puppy dog eyes when you’re heading for a trip without your pet? You no longer need to feel the guilt, because at the Little Lord Barkley in Headley Court, Surrey, your pooch is likely to have a better time away than you will.
The ultra-luxury stay includes first-class care that borders on the extreme.
The experience begins from the moment the dogs are picked up – by a chauffeur in a Range Rover Sport – and there are no cages, each pooch has a pillow to lounge on until they arrive at the hotel.
A team member will greet them on arrival, dressed in a Ralph Lauren, Barbour and Le Chameau uniform.
Once inside (or outside) pooches can enjoy Evian water from fountains, receive £40 Japanese aromatherapy massages with oils from Neils Yard and baths with rose petals, while at bedtime, the dogs unwind to a classical music soundtrack – all to ensure they are relaxed to the max.
There are no designated rooms. Instead, pets can sleep wherever they want, be that on a plush leather sofa, in a dog bed or on the floor with their newly-made pals.
If you’re concerned your pooch might not get enough attention, you can rest easy – the hotel has five permanent staff members and only allows 15 dogs at any given time – and there’s also a 24-hour nanny service (for £75 per night).
Worried dog owners can also sign up for Whatsapp updates and videos (filmed from a drone that flies across the property) and local vets are on stand-by in case of emergency.
As for the menu, three meals are offered every day, prepared with meat from high end stores such as Whole Foods, Harrods and Fortnum & Mason – all cooked to order by a chef. Additional choices are available for £5 or £7 extra a day.
Fridays are even more lavish, with a weekly afternoon tea party provided by a canine bakery including sandwiches, cakes and treats made from British organic ingredients.
Dogs who are staying over during their birthday also receive a special ‘doggy cake’.
It’s worth noting that the hotel is primarily designed for small or medium-sized dogs with plenty of outdoor space, and welcomes pups as young as one month, as well as disabled dogs.
If your ‘little lord’ been a good boy/girl, give them their treat (but beware, they might not miss you as much as you hope).
Soho Farmhouse for dogs
Have you ever bought a fragrance that you loved on someone else only to realise that it smells completely different on you?
Or come back to a fragrance after a break and realised that you don’t like it anymore?
We spoke to beauty expert Leighton Denny MBE, who spilled the beans on everything that can change how you feel about a perfume.
Why do fragrances smell different on people?
This is because each of us has our own ‘scent print’ that will influence the development of a perfume. This odour-identity is the sum total of our genes, our skin chemistry, diet, medication intake, stress level and, probably the most important factor of all, the temperature of our skin. It’s not as simple as saying that fragrances react differently on different people because of their ‘body chemistry’.
The warmth of our skin is critical. Some people have more pores per centimetre than others, or more layers of fat in their skin. These and other factors affect the warmth of skin, which in turn influences the scent of a fragrance. We are all created equal until we use fragrance.
Does what I eat affect my perfume?
If you’re on a low-fat diet, the oil levels in your skin tend to be lower so you may find that your fragrance does not last as long.
What about antibiotics?
Yes, firstly, because many antibiotics change the smell of your skin. Secondly, because their action decimates the bacteria on your skin, which, in turn blends with your skin oils to produce a fragrance that is distinctive to you. Some medications might change your favourite fragrance so don’t bin it if this happens, just wait until the medication has left your system and try the fragrance again.
How should you spray on your fragrance?
Applying perfume is the simplest of matters. Just simply spray. Avoid rubbing the wrists together after application to prevent ‘crushing’ the scent. Apply on pulse points: below earlobes, inside elbows, back of knees, ankles, base of neck, inside wrists. Other good places to apply are in cleavage, on shoulders, and back of the neck at the hairline. Some women apply fragrance on inner thighs, so the scent wafts up and around them. Spray about 20cm away from your skin. An even spray over a wider area will help your fragrance last longer than a generous amount in a small area.
How long should a good fragrance last on your skin and in the bottle?
In the bottle it’s usually anything from 12 to 35 months but it depends on the type of fragrance, its ingredients and how it is stored. Any fragrance stored out of its box in direct sunlight isn’t going to last more than a few months at most.
But if stored in a dark, cool environment and the ingredients are the type not to decay easily, then you might get well over 10 years. Some vintage fragrances can last for decades, when stored properly.
Does your favourite perfume change on your skin as you get older?
Yes! Our chemistry changes with age and fragrance is affected by our chemistry!
Antibiotics can change the way you smell. Who’d have thought it?
The LIGHT & DARK by Leighton Denny collection can be purchased on LD-boutique.com
There’s more choice than ever for vegans in London and yesterday, another addition was introduced.
US vegan brand by Chloe. has launched its afternoon tea, but unlike other similar experiences in the capital, this one includes tuna salad and smoked salmon.
Well, OK, not really – the dishes are all made from plant-based ingredients but have been given a ‘non-vegan’ spin.
Featuring both sweet and savoury delights, the menu features egg salad made from scrambled tofu, tuna salad made from chickpea tuna, mayo and onion and smoked salmon created from marinated beef tomatoes, dill and cashew mozz served on a beetroat loaf.
As for the sweet treats, stuff your face full with rainbow star scones with strawberry jam and coconut whipped cream, Victoria sponge bars, chocolate whoopie pie and red velvet cupcake with cream cheese frosting and sprinkles.
Of course, there’s plenty of option for a nice cuppa to go with or alternatively, add a glass of bubbly for £7.50.
By Chloe. is known for its ability to create meals that mimic non-vegan flavours and are popular with vegans and meat-eaters alike, with 13 locations worldwide including seven in New York City, where the brand was first launched.
The new menu is on offer at both of its UK branches, in Covent Garden and Tower Bridge, costs £20 per person and is served seven days a week (see the individual branch websites for opening hour).
Bring a meat-eating friend and see if they can tell the difference.
Given today is all about women, it’s seems fitting that some men are feeling pretty left out amid the cries of ‘Happy International Women’s Day!’.
International Women’s Day is a day reserved for celebrating the achievements of women socially and politically, as well as female equality.
But, with gender equality a hot topic, some people have been wondering (whether being facetious or serious) when the male equivalent day is.
So, when is International Men’s Day?
International Men’s Day is celebrated every year on 19 November, this year falling on a Tuesday.
What does IMD celebrate?
Founded in 1992 by Thomas Oaster, it wasn’t 2008 that the UK started celebrating the day. It is now celebrated in 70 countries across the world.
The International Men’s Day UK website states that the day is a chance to address a number of the issues affecting men and boys and how they can be dealt with.
These include: high suicide rate, shorter life expectancy, marginalised men in society and male victims of sexual abuse.
Despite being founded after International Women’s Day, which began in 1910, it does not serve as an antithesis – instead it marks ways we can all work together to change gender stereotyping and discrimination.
There were six pillars at the core of International Mens Day back when it was founded. They are:
Is there an International Gender Neutral Day?
If there’s a day celebrating men and another celebrating women, it begs the question: is there a day celebrating those who identify as gender neutral?
And it’s a question that’s not gone unnoticed by people on Twitter, with some wondering if such day exits.
There is currently no official International Gender Neutral Day, but 14 July has been celebrated as International Non-Binary Day, with others referring to it as International Gender Neutral Day.
Non-binary is used as a category for those who don’t identify with masculine or feminine identities.
It’s understood 14 July was chosen as it falls in-between International Women’s Day in March and International Men’s Day in November.
Close-Up Of Gender Symbols On White Background
When we talk about STIs it’s often in relation to young people.
Reckless teenagers, drunk students, that kind of thing. But it looks like it’s actually middle aged people who are the biggest STI catchers.
The rates of sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) are rising rapidly among US adults above age 40, according to a new report.
From 2016 to 2017, chlamydia rates increased among middle-aged Americans while cases of syphilis almost doubled.
The good news doesn’t stop coming either. In 2018 about 2.3 million Americans were diagnosed, which is 200,000 more than the year before.
The team, from Health Testing Centers, says the findings prove that education and access to contraception are essential so that the STI growth stops gathering momentum, especially as gonorrhea becomes more resistant to antibiotics.
Despite the number of STDs rising, they are still highly stigmatized. According to a poll conducted in 2015 by HIV Plus Magazine, 25% of people who were diagnosed with an STD didn’t tell their partner.
Additionally, another 49 percent said they had never been tested.
Most STIs are cureable and all STIs can be managed using medication.
You can avoid catching an STI by using a condom with new sexual partners, and getting an STI test before ditching the condoms.
STI checks are free and confidential. You can arrange one through your GP.
Ariana Grande has teamed up with Starbucks to launch a special coffee to celebrate International Women’s Day.
Yeah, that’s not a pleasant sentence.
This year, like the last few years, brands are doing the absolute most to try to hijack this annual day of female empowerment and celebration, and make it instead about nothing more than buying stuff.
Namely, pink stuff. Stuff with ‘the future is female’ slogans, female sex symbols emblazoned on the front, or cuddly illustrations of vaginas.
It is nothing more than a thinly veiled attempt to commodify our feminism and we are absolutely not here for it.
Capitalism has gone into overdrive this IWD, and you’ve got to work hard to avoid it because it’s basically everywhere.
Pink doughnuts to celebrate women, fast food menus to celebrate women, car insurance because… feminism?
Buying a t-shirt with a cute, vaguely feminist slogan isn’t going to do much to help the cause of women globally.
And lining the pockets of giant corporations might be actively damaging for certain women – remember the ’empowering’ Spice Girls t-shirts that were actually made in a factory in Bangladesh where women were earning the equivalent of 35p?
International Women’s Day is about empowerment and equality. Working to redress the huge gender discrepancies that are still failing women the world over, and finding space within our feminism to make sure it is intersectional and inclusive of everyone who identifies as female.
So how can you celebrate International Women’s Day without just making Starbucks richer? We have a few ideas.
Support other women in the workplace
Women make up 47% of the UK workforce but the gender pay-gap still sits at 17.9%, according to figures published by the Trades Union Congress.
It is thought that it will take 60 years for the gap to close at the current rate of progress.
The only way to speed things up is for women to consistently, relentlessly and loudly demand change – and also support each other in any way they can.
Women in the workplace have a responsibility to bolster the women around them. If you are in a position of power, that means taking on mentoring roles for female colleagues, creating space for younger women to come up behind you, and using your influence to create opportunities.
It can even be as simple as listening to your female colleagues or working together to overcome a grievance.
There is power in numbers – the moment we don’t feel alone is the moment we can start to exact some lasting change.
Spend your money in female-owned businesses
Women account for just 17% of business owners. And female-owned businesses have a higher churn-rate – i.e. there are more start-ups, but also more closures.
Men are twice as likely to be entrepreneurially active as women – and a large part of that comes down to cultural barriers.
Research from the Unilever Foundation found that women are not supported or encouraged into entrepreneurship in the same way as their male counterparts.
They also found female business owners routinely report that they have had to overcome others’ expectations of them; they also cited the lack of female role models in business.
The lack of female CEOs and big business owners is a huge factor that contributes to the gender pay gap – so we need to encourage more women in to business, and then do more to help those businesses flourish.
Rather than spending your money in Starbucks this IWD, visit one of these amazing female-owned brands and support women in business:
Khalia Ismain launched a discount card specifically for black-owned businesses – offering great deals on skincare, hair products, clothing lines and food brands.
Biana Miller created an inclusive range of hosiery offering different shades of ‘nude’.
Sabrina Greenberg-James and Charlotte Simmons have recently launched Her Move magazine which aims to make fitness and activity more inclusive and accessible for women.
Volunteer your time
If you’re desperate to spend something this International Women’s Day – make it your time.
There are many charities around the world working hard to support women and girls – and they need your help.
Whether you choose to focus on education, healthcare, domestic violence, period poverty – there are some incredible organisations that can help you give something back in the fight towards equality.
Womankind Worldwide is a women’s rights and international development organisation making an impact through the power of partnership. They work to attack the root causes of gender inequality across the globe, and challenge governments to protect and promote women’s rights.
The Hunger Project UK is an organisation committed to the sustainable end of world hunger. One of their primary focuses is developing women’s leadership to end hunger and poverty.
Invest In Girls teaches high school girls financial concepts and introduces them to career paths in finance. Their vision is to give all girls access to financial education and encourage careers in the financial services industry.
Big up your friends
International Women’s Day is about supporting the women who inspire you – and that includes your friends and female relatives.
If there are women in your life who support you, encourage you and make you feel good about being a woman – today is the day to tell them how much they mean to you.
Women have come a long way in the fight for equality – but there is still so much further to go. We will never get there without the micro, daily support of our bezzie mates.
The ones who help you prepare for job interviews, wipe away your tears when you’re sidelined for promotion in place of a mediocre man, provide an escape route from toxic relationships, like every single one of your Instagram posts.
It doesn’t have to be performative. Send them a private message, or better yet, give them a call, and tell them exactly what you love about them, why they are so inspiring and why you’re proud of them.
Your female networks are invaluable – so let them know.
IWD: How to fight back against the commodification of Internatio