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Metro.co.uk: News, Sport, Showbiz, Celebrities from Metro

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    Drinking red or white wine could describe your personality
    Do you drink red or white wine? (Picture: Getty)

    New research has found that your choice of wine actually says a lot about your personality.

    If you like Game of Thrones, consider yourself an introvert and enjoy travelling, results found you’re more likely to be a red wine drinker.

    Conducted in advance of National Wine Day on 25 May, the survey of 2,000 Americans (aged 21+) looked at the differences in personality traits between those who drink red wine to those who prefer white.

    It revealed that white wine drinkers are more likely to be night owls and extroverts, as well as more likely to listen to punk music.

    Commissioned by Coravin and conducted by OnePoll, results found white wine drinkers were also more likely to identify as curious, sarcastic and perfectionists.

    Are you a red wine drinker?

    If so, you are:

    • More likely to be a “wine aficionado”
    • Early bird
    • Introvert
    • Prefer dogs to cats
    • Listen to jazz music
    • More likely to identify as adventurous, humble and organized
    • Willing to spend slightly more per bottle ($40)

    On the other hand, red wine drinkers were more likely to identify as adventurous, humble and organized.

    They were also more likely to identify as early birds, listen to jazz and consider themselves to be ‘wine aficionados’.

    In addition to looking at the differences in personality, the survey also examined each group’s knowledge when it came to drinking and wasting wine, as well as hosting and attending events.

    Do you prefer red or white?
    Apparently, drinking red means you know more about wine (Picture: Getty)

    It found that red wine drinkers had the knowledge to back up their claim of ‘wine aficionado’ — they were more likely to know how to correctly hold a wine glass, know what ‘tannins’ are and know how long it takes for wine to oxidize.

    They were also more likely to consider it a turnoff if a date wasn’t knowledgeable about wine, and were willing to spend slightly more on a bottle.

    The average respondent drinks four glasses of wine per week, and the favourite place to drink — regardless of wine preference — was found to be at home.

    More partial to a glass of white?

    • Less likely to be a “wine aficionado”
    • Night owl
    • Extrovert
    • Prefer cats to dogs
    • Listen to punk music
    • More likely to identify as identify as curious, sarcastic and perfectionists
    • Willing to spend slightly less per bottle ($37)

    But 62% will forego drinking a glass of wine after work or with dinner because they don’t want to open a new bottle.

    ‘Enjoying a glass of whatever wine someone is in the mood for, doesn’t need to be wasteful. There are more amazing wines available now, than ever before. Wine lovers should be able to enjoy the wine they love, in the amount they want, without thinking about when they are going to return to that bottle,’ said Greg Lambrecht, Founder and Inventor of Coravin.

    In addition to drinking in the comfort of their own home, the survey found that 49% of respondents enjoy drinking wine at events or gatherings, preferred over drinking at a bar.

    While at an event, three quarters will drink what everyone else is drinking, even if they’d prefer something else.

    And after hosting an event, people admit to throwing out an average of three partially-full bottles of wine.

    Americans do try to stop the waste, though: The average respondent finishes three bottles of wine a month to stop them from going to waste, but throws out two partially-full bottles that have gone bad.

    ‘Coravin offers wine lovers freedom in the way they drink wine. They can now enjoy a glass without having to finish the bottle and the dispute between picking red vs. white is obsolete, you can have both!’ said Fred Levy, CEO of Coravin.

    ‘Anyone with a Coravin System can now relax and enjoy any glass of wine, whenever they want, with whoever they want, without wasting a drop.’

    MORE: The first ever sky pool is coming to London

    MORE: Woman left paralysed after thinking her illness was just a cold


    Do you prefer red or white wine? Here's what that reveals about your personalityDo you prefer red or white wine? Here's what that reveals about your personality

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    Hen party items
    The bridesmaid said she doesn’t really want to party when her relative is dying (Picture: Getty)

    When you know someone hasn’t got long left, you want to spend as much time with them as possible – and that might mean cancelling plans.

    One woman dealing with a close relative dying from cancer said she wanted to cancel on her friend’s hen party, but the bride wouldn’t consider it.

    Posting on Reddit, she explained ‘A close relative of mine is in hospital dying of cancer right now and has been given days to live. He is my family’s only priority right now and we are all devastated, he is suffering awfully and we spend our days in the hospital almost waiting for him to be put out of his misery.

    ‘On Saturday I am supposed to be attending my best friends hen party. I am the bridesmaid and have arranged it all with the other bridesmaid. This has been tough as bride is expecting a lot and her family attending have no money to attend (people have complained about the meals costing £30 when this is all they may have to pay for). Some have cancelled and I have lost money because of unpaid deposits.’

    She said that the party would be drinks at a friend’s house, a meal out and then clubbing to keep the costs down.

    The bridesmaid said that given her current situation, she really wasn’t in the mood.

    A group of women at a hen party taking a selfie
    The bride said she wanted her to be there (Picture: Getty)

    She added: ‘I in no way want to attend, I can’t think of anything worse right now than hosting a group of 14 guests and acting happy when I’ve spent the last week crying, and spending my evening in a club full of drunk people.’

    But when she spoke to the bride, she didn’t get a great reception.

    She said: ‘I’ve called bride tonight to try to hint I may not be able to attend and hoped she’d understand. She lost her dad a few years ago to cancer, she knows the impact it has. She was supportive in the conversation but also said as long as I’ve organised and attend the hen, then she’s happy.

    ‘She’s not even considering the possibility of me not attending. My boyfriend and family think she is being ridiculous, and I am getting annoyed that she won’t openly give me the option to do whatever I need to do. I don’t want to let her down as she means a lot to me, but I am in no position to support her and her party right now.’

    She asked Reddit what they thought she should do. Most agreed that she needed to sit down and spell out exactly how she feels.

    One poster said: ‘Please tell her plainly that you are emotionally exhausted and grieving, and that, while you love and support her, you just can’t attend her party. If she is a good friend, she will be disappointed but understanding. If she pitches a fit, then you’ve got a bridezilla. Stand your ground and take care of yourself.’

    Another poster shared a similar experience: ‘I went through something similar last week. I told the bride I could not attend for many reasons (my own health, a family member being diagnosed with cancer, finances, r hour drive) and she was everything but supportive. She gave me the silent treatment for hours then proceeded to tell me she’s “tired of excuses”. She gave me an ultimatum pretty much and hasn’t spoken to me since. It’s sad because I’m having a really hard time and I have no support from her.

    ‘Weddings bring out the worst in people sometimes.’

    The poster updated the thread to say she would speak to the bride and explain exactly why she didn’t want to go.

    MORE: Woman left paralysed after thinking her illness was just a cold

    MORE: The first ever sky pool is coming to London


    Bride to be hen partyBride to be hen party

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    The highcut swimsuit
    It’s incredibly high-cut.. (Picture: Topshop)

    Summer is coming, which means it’s time to fill up your wardrobes with bikinis and swimsuits ready to hit the beach.

    But if you’re not wanting to show off too much skin, you should probably stay away from Topshop’s seriously high-cut swimsuit, which people on Twitter are saying is so high-cut it looks as though the woman modelling it is wearing it the wrong way round.

    The swimsuit is £40 and features some oranges and zebra stripes on a black background.

    It looks high enough to give you a front wedgie – but it does come with a rather cute waist belt.

    That hasn’t stopped people mocking it on Twitter.

    Eleanor Turney recently shared a photo of the swimsuit alongside the caption: ‘What the everlasting f*** is this?’ And since, people have beem laughing at it – with one person even calling it ‘distressing.

    Jenny Landreth, a writer and swimmer, also mocked the swimsuit.

    She wrote: ‘Laughing my actual head off at the thought of turning up to swim training in this.’

    The post received a number of hilarious comments.

    One person wrote: ‘We can all be relieved it’s unavailable in my size.’

    Another said: ‘Jesus what is happening there? What is not happening? That person had actual corners? I can’t unsee that!’

    Another Twitter user wrote: ‘You’d have to stop off for some serious waxing first!’

    And someone else commented: ‘It’s a head scarf. Someone needs to tell her.’

    So it’s safe to say, this swimsuit probably won’t be one of the most-wanted this year.

    But still, at least the design is pretty, right?

    MORE: Apparently, whether you drink red or white wine could say a lot about your personality

    MORE: The first ever sky pool is coming to London


    Topshop is selling an extremely high-cut swimsuit which shoppers say looks like it?s been worn the ?wrong way round?Topshop is selling an extremely high-cut swimsuit which shoppers say looks like it?s been worn the ?wrong way round?

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    China is always stealing food
    China, the naughty food theif (Picture: Kennedy News)

    A cross kitty has been dubbed ‘Greedy Cat’ after repeatedly getting caught stealing food – as his long fur gives away his crimes by getting Coco Pops and baked beans stuck to his face.

    In the wake of the sad death of beloved internet sensation Grumpy Cat, social media could have found a moody replacement with the crafty China, from Colchester in Essex.

    Owner Bea Ettlinger, 26, couldn’t believe her eyes when the cat turned around to reveal dozens of the chocolatey cereal stuck to his whiskers.

    Hilarious photos taken last week show 18-month-old China with cereal stuck all over his face, in his whiskers and eyebrows – and glaring furiously at the camera.

    The fuming Chinchilla Persian looks less than amused to be covered in the cereal all day and night.

    Other photos show China covered in the sauce from baked beans after he snuck his head into a can.

    The hilarious images of ‘Greedy Cat’ quickly went viral when Bea shared them in a social media group – receiving more than 9,700 likes and comments.

    China with food all over his face
    Look at that cheeky face (Picture: Kennedy News)

    Bea, from Colchester in Essex, said: ‘He’s a funny boy. It was a surprise to see them on his face.

    ‘Me and my mum were out and my cat is a bit of a scavenger. He will try and get in any cupboard, anywhere he thinks he can fit.

    ‘He’s very greedy. He thought he will go into the kids’ cereal. His face was wet from going out and the coco pops just stuck to the fur.

    ‘Me and my mum were just sitting down and saw him walk past but thought nothing of it, and then he turned around and he just had all these coco pops stuck to his face.

    ‘He knew there was something on his face but me and my mum were just laughing at him so much.’

    Bea said the Coco Pops were still on his face the next morning.

    She explained: ‘I refused to remove them because they were so funny to look at.

    ‘They just stayed there. Because I didn’t want to take them off his face, the dog Toad ate them off his face in the end.

    ‘He wasn’t distressed by it, he just looked grumpy as if to say “I know I’ve messed up but I was just greedy and hungry.”

    ‘He was definitely eating them but where he’s licked them they’ve got sticky and stuck on his face. I couldn’t believe it. He’s such a silly boy.

    ‘He caught me by surprise because I didn’t realise it was that funny to other people. I didn’t realise he was going to get so much attention.

    Cheeky boy
    Caught in the act! (Picture: Kennedy News)

    After sharing the photos of the cat online, Bea claims he was compared to the fluffy sidekick Snowbell from the Stuart Little films.

    It’s not the first time that China has got himself into a mess as Bea says he once gave himself an accidental fake tan after curiously dipping his head into a tin of baked beans.

    The mischievous feline was left with an orange ring around his face until Bea wiped it off – and was once again grumpy to be caught out in his misdeeds.

    Bea said: ‘My daughter cooked herself beans on toast and I left the pot out in case she wanted some more beans, and he actually went into the bean can and had a great big orange ring around his whiskers.

    ‘Because he’s so bright he literally had a bright orange face. He’s terrible. He’s absolutely terrible, and he’ll eat anything as well.

    ‘We’ve got a carrier bag that we use as a bin bag and every day he pulls rubbish out of the bag regardless of what it is.

    ‘He’s just so greedy. He just scrounges for food like a dog, and when I’ve fed him he’s still hungry. He’ll go through the bins like he’s never been fed in his life. He does it all the time.

    ‘I should know better really. I just enjoy it because I like seeing what he’s gotten up to.’

    China’s misdemeanours and grumpy reaction to being caught red-handed has left Bea wondering if he could rival internet sensation Grumpy Cat, who sadly passed away last week.

    Bea said: ‘He’s just grumpy – he does the facial expressions. If you try and stroke him in a certain place he will try and bite you. He’s not aggressive – it’s just his way.

    ‘He’s my baby, he’s lovely. He’s moody but he’s got a character.

    ‘He’s a very pretty boy and he has such a pretty little face. But he acts like a Tomcat.

    ‘He should be a pedigree Persian, indoors, brushed cat but no, he’d rather go out in search of worms and just gets himself into trouble [inside] in the meantime.’

    MORE: People are mocking Topshop’s high-cut swimsuit for looking ‘the wrong way round’

    MORE: The first ever sky pool is coming to London


    Greedy catGreedy cat

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    Illustration of stained pink underwear on the floor
    Notice bleached patches in your pants? You’re not alone (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    You just bought that pair of underwear, wore them once, and threw them in the wash. Why are they already stained with lighter patches?

    This is the curse of anyone who likes black undies.

    No matter how much you wash them or how few times you wear them, you might spot areas in the crotch that look like they’ve been hit with bleach.

    That’s not down to a dodgy washing machine or over-wear – your vagina can actually ‘bleach’ your underwear.

    But don’t worry, it’s perfectly natural.

    Why are there ‘bleached’ patches in your underwear?

    The vagina’s discharge – which is a normal, healthy thing, by the way – is naturally acidic, which can leave white or yellow stains on your underwear’s crotch region.

    Your vaginal discharge’s pH level is on the naturally acidic side, varying between 3.5 and 7. A healthy vagina will produce more acidic discharge, but the pH can fluctuate due to all sorts of factors, including your sex life, hormones, and the menstrual cycle.

    When you wear lighter coloured pants, you might not notice these stains. But when you wear white underwear you might spot lingering yellowish, off-white marks, while black underwear will look like it’s been bleached in little patches.

    This is nothing to worry about.

    Dr Alex Eskander, consultant gynaecologist at The Gynae Centre, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘The vagina contains ‘good’ bacteria, like lactobacilli, which keeps the vagina healthy by maintaining the optimum acidity level, in turn preventing bad bacteria from causing infection.

    ‘This discharge increases during ovulation and pregnancy due to an increase in cervical mucus.

    ‘When exposed to the air, the discharge can stain underwear a mild yellow colour due to oxidation.

    ‘Having bleached patches on your underwear is quite normal and generally nothing to worry about.’

    metro illustrations
    Discharge is normal (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    How to prevent ‘bleach’ stains in your underwear

    As we said, bleached thongs aren’t an issue you need to panic about, but if you’re fed up of your fancy black pants getting wrecked by your vagina, there are steps you can take to preserve their colour.

    First off, you could prevent the stains entirely by wearing pantyliners throughout the day. These will create a barrier between your vulva and your underwear, preventing that slightly acidic discharge from hitting the underwear fabric directly.

    You can also make sure to rinse underwear immediately after wearing them, rather than letting them sit in your laundry basket until the next big wash. This will stop the bleaching agent from sitting on the fabric and taking effect.

    Stains from discharge can also be broken down by cleaning products with enzymes, including a lot of those spray-on stain removers. Spray the affected area, leave to soak for a couple of hours, then wash.

    And of course, if you really want to get your black underwear back to its former glory, you could also home-dye it. Simple.

    Is your discharge normal?

    Whenever we chat about anything related to discharge, this worry comes up: am I normal?

    So let’s cover it.

    Yes, having discharge is normal and healthy. Usually you’ll produce up to 4ml of discharge a day.

    Discharge is part of the vagina’s magical and natural self-cleaning process. It’s a type of mucus produced by the cervix.

    Dr Virginia Beckett, spokesperson for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, tells metro.co.uk: ‘It’s normal and healthy for a woman to produce a clear or white discharge from her vagina.

    ‘The amount of vaginal discharge varies throughout a women’s menstrual cycle, and most pregnant women will get a pregnancy discharge.

    ‘Healthy discharge doesn’t have a strong smell or colour, but women may feel an uncomfortable wetness.’

    Your discharge won’t be entirely odourless or smell of roses, so don’t panic if you have a slight scent.

    A strong smell or a change in smell can be a sign of irritation and infection, so if you notice that it’s worth heading to your doctor or gynaecologist.

    In terms of colour, clear, white, or cream discharge is normal. If it’s yellow, brown (when you’re not on your period), or green, this could also be a sign of infection.

    Consistency-wise, everyone’s different, so it’s vital to know what’s normal for you and check for any changes. If discharge becomes thick and lumpy, like cottage cheese (sorry for that visual), talk to a medical professional as this could be another sign of infection.

    The vagina is pretty good at telling you when something’s wrong, and it’ll often do that through changes in your discharge.

    Dr Eskander says: ‘If you notice any changes to the colour and smell of your vaginal discharge this could indicate bacterial vaginosis, a common bacterial infection.

    ‘If a change in colour and smell is accompanied by itching or irritation, this could indicate a candida infection.

    ‘Gonorrhea or chlamydia may also lead to excessive yellow mucus discharge. If you experience any changes that aren’t normal for you, you should visit your doctor or gynaecologist.’

    MORE: Is your vaginal discharge normal?

    MORE: I painted vulvas in public loos to show no two vaginas are the same

    MORE: Your hayfever medication could be making your vagina dry


    Here's how much vaginal discharge is normalHere's how much vaginal discharge is normal

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    A widow is travelling the world with a cardboard cutout of her late husband
    Michelle planned to travel the world with Paul. Then he passed away from cancer. (Picture: SWNS)

    Widow Michelle Bourke, 58, has one thing she has to pack whenever she ventures outside her town: a cardboard cutout of her late husband, Paul.

    Michelle is travelling the world with the cutout – so her partner can see the places he missed out on during her life.

    So far the pair have visited the Grand Canyon, the Eiffel Tower, Buckingham Palace, Stonehenge, New York, and Phuket.

    They’d always hoped to travel the world together, but after 25 years of happy marriage Paul died of cancer aged 61 in 2016.

    Michelle promised to honour their dream in a conversation before his death – so went on an epic journey with the cardboard doppelganger.

    The cutout uses an image of Paul aged 34 when they wed – and he’s still wearing his wedding suit.

    Michelle of Melbourne, Australia, said: ‘Paul asked “what are you going to do when I’m gone?”

    Michelle honoured her promise by taking a cardboard cutout of Paul on a trip around the world
    Michelle honoured her promise by taking a cardboard cutout of Paul on a trip around the world (Picture: SWNS)

    ‘I said: “I’m going to travel – I’ll pack a photo of you in my suitcase and take photos of us in all the different countries”.’

    Michelle stuck to that promise but took it a step further, swapping a photograph for a fold-up cutout that Michelle can take with her everywhere she goes.

    The cutout will need to be replaced soon, as it’s looking a bit ropy from all the travelling.

    ‘Twelve months after Paul died I went on a tour with Cardboard Paul from LA to Las Vegas and San Francisco,’ says Michelle.

    ‘Then we flew to Houston and later visited Paris, London, Edinburgh, Wales, Dublin and Somerset.

    ‘Stonehenge was an amazing experience because I really wanted to go there.

    Michelle and her cutout at Buckingham Palace
    Michelle and her cutout at Buckingham Palace (Picture: SWNS)

    ‘It was silent but windy and I had to stop Paul from blowing away. I felt at home.

    ‘The Grand Canyon was spectacular – the energy there was lovely, peaceful and calm.

    ‘Paris was amazing because Paul and I always wanted to see the Eiffel Tower.

    ‘When I saw it I cried, it was beautiful.

    ‘En route back to Australia I visited Singapore to relax.’

    Paul and Michelle were married for 25 years and had two children together. They were in separate marriages when they met at work and became friends.

    After two years of friendship, their respective marriages broke down and they fell in love with each other.

    Michelle says: ‘Paul was family oriented, my best friend and soulmate.

    ‘We were comfortable around each other and enjoyed going for breakfast every Sunday.

    ‘Paul was fun, quirky and had a weird sense of humour.

    Michelle and the cutout of her late husband Paul at Limerick's King John's Castle
    Limerick’s King John’s Castle (Picture: SWNS)

    ‘He talked more than the average man and would follow me around the house telling the same stories over and over again.

    ‘He liked dad jokes around the dinner table and was easy-going. We enjoyed holidays together at our shack in Central Victoria, Aus.’

    Paul was diagnosed with melanoma, a type of skin cancer, in 2008, and was in remission when, in 2010, a lump formed on his neck that turned out to be non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

    The tumour was removed and Paul underwent radiotherapy but was diagnosed with melanoma again in 2014 after it spread to his spine and brain.

    He died on May 20, 2016.

    Michelle wrote a book, titled Conversations With Paul, describing his final years and the impact of his death.

    She has penned a second book, Travelling With Cardboard Paul, which will be released on 25 May.

    MORE: This First Dates couple just got engaged and all is right with the world

    MORE: Photographer takes stunning portraits of black cats and dogs to get more of them adopted


    SEI_69146784SEI_69146784

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    Sliced grilled ribeye steak
    Poor diet could be as risky as drinking alcohol when it comes to cancer risks (Picture: Getty)

    A study has found that a ‘suboptimal diet’ may be the cause of 5.2% of all new invasive cancer cases in the U.S. every year.

    Researchers discovered that there are two specific diet mistakes that are most closely linked to cancer – not eating enough dairy and not eating enough whole-grains.

    Consuming too much red meat, processed meat and sugar-sweetened drinks were also found to be possible causes of cancer.

    The study, published in the journal JNCI Cancer Spectrum, found that diet may have accounted for 80,000 new invasive cancer cases in U.S. adults in 2015.

    Most of already knew that poor diet choices could leave us at a higher risk for certain cancers – sugars, processed food and red meat are often cited as risky products – but the risks of not eating dairy or whole-grains are less well known.

    The scientists also identified which cancers were most likely to occur if you have a poor diet.

    Blueberry smoothie in glass
    Are you getting enough dairy? (Picture: Getty)

    They found that 38.3% of all colorectal cancer cases in 2015 were associated with suboptimal diets and 25.9% of mouth, pharynx, and larynx cancers were also linked with diet.

    The study also estimated that about 16% of diet-related cancer cases are connected to obesity, rather than the diet alone.

    Researchers also found that certain populations – middle-aged men and some racial and ethnic minorities – are much more likely to be affected by diet-associated cancer.

    ‘Diet is among the few modifiable risk factors for cancer prevention,’ said study author Dr Fang Fang Zhang.

    ‘These findings underscore the need for reducing cancer burden and disparities in the US by improving the intake of key food groups and nutrients of Americans.’

    The study does have implications for people who follow the keto diet – which is very low in carbohydrates – and people who follow a paleo diet – which excludes dairy completely.

    The findings suggest that the best way to lower your risk of cancer is to eat a balanced, well-rounded diet – and not exclude any entire food groups. Which makes sense.

    Researchers hope that the findings will encourage people to think carefully about their diet and to recognise poor diet as a significant cancer risk factor, much like alcohol or smoking.

    MORE: Why your vagina leaves ‘bleached’ patches in your underwear

    MORE: Widow travels the world with a cardboard cutout of her late husband

    MORE: People are mocking Topshop’s high-cut swimsuit for looking ‘the wrong way round’


    Sliced grilled ribeye steakSliced grilled ribeye steak

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    David James Seed was diagnosed with pectus excavatum at 12, a condition which caused his ribs to grow inwards
    David James Seed was diagnosed with pectus excavatum at 12, a condition which caused his ribs to grow inwards (Picture: David James Seed/Kennedy News)

    David James Seed, 25, used to dread going topless.

    He had a deformity that meant his chest grew inwards, giving him the appearance of a caved in torso.

    Now, years after having a metal bar placed in his rib cage, he’s working as a Calvin Klein model, and recently shared his transformation to inspire others living with the same condition.

    David first noticed a dip in his chest when he was 10 years old, and observed it getting deeper over the next two years.

    He had a major dip in confidence when other boys in the school changing rooms started to point out the ‘dent’ in his chest and make fun.

    At 12 he was officially diagnosed with pectus excavatum, a condition in which the cartilage in the rib cage grows too fast so the ribs grow inwards, causing the sternum to sink in.

    David was incredibly self-conscious of his caved in chest
    David was incredibly self-conscious of his caved in chest (Picture: David James Seed/Kennedy News)

    David’s parents pushed for their son to have corrective surgery; a two hour operation that involved placing a curved metal bar underneath his sternum and attached to both sides of his rib cage, to force the bones into their correct position.

    The metal bar put pressure on David’s ribs and chest, putting him in intense pain.

    But he says the agony was worth it. Slowly he regained his confidence and was able to live life again.

    What is pectus excavatum?

    Pectus excavatum (also known as funnel chest) is a condition in which, instead of being level with the ribs, the breastbone (sternum) is ‘sunken’ so that the middle of the chest looks ‘caved in’.

    Pectus excavatum affects about one in 1,000 children and is four times as common in boys as in girls.

    We are not sure what causes ribcage problems, but it seems to be linked to the cartilage in the ribcage overgrowing. More research is needed to confirm the cause. There may be a genetic link to ribcage problems, as it seems to run in families.

    If the ribcage problems are not causing any physical or psychological problems, a child may not need any treatment.

    When ribcage problems are affecting a child’s lung function or are causing serious psychological problems, an operation to correct the problem might be suggested.

    This surgery is usually suggested when a child’s rib cage problem is affecting his or her breathing or lung function. It may also be suggested if it is causing severe psychological problems.

    – Great Ormond Street

    David said: ‘I remember meeting the consultant and he was explaining to us what was going to happen and that it was going to be extremely painful and it just freaked me out. I got a nose bleed and almost passed out.

    ‘But going into hospital for the operation I was really naive. I was just a happy little boy going along.

    ‘It wasn’t until I was about to get the anaesthetic and the nurse mentioned that this is the second most painful surgery that they’re allowed to do that I started panicking.

    ‘Then I woke up and I had a flat chest. It saw it straight away, it was mad. I was just amazed to have this new body. I had gone from having such an extreme dip to a perfectly flat chest.

    ‘The pain was excruciating. I had this foreign object in my body and it was pushing and putting all this pressure on my bones.

    ‘It was like having a really heavy weight on your chest but you can’t lift it off.

    A two hour surgery involved inserting a metal bar through the chest
    A two hour surgery involved inserting a metal bar through the chest (Picture: David James Seed/Kennedy News)

    ‘I went back to school after the summer holidays but it took me a long time to recover fully. It was a huge change to my body adjusting to having this object in me.

    ‘And it takes time for your bones to realise that this is how they’re supposed to grow now instead of constantly trying to keep growing inwards.’

    After recovering, David found a love for fitness and building muscle.

    At 15 he told his mum that he’s one day model for Calvin Klein. It turns out he was right.

    In his gap year working as a teaching assistant in Sydney, a stranger suggested David should get into modelling. He went to a walk-in at an agency, got signed sharpish, and gave up his place at university to pursue this new career.

    Now signed with Models 1 and Boss, David models for designers, magazines, and editorials. And, of course, he’s landed a job for Calvin Klein.

    This year David was finally able to undergo surgery to remove the metal bar from his chest. The procedure took 90 minutes and happened on 15 May.

    After another surgery and recovery, David is a model
    After another surgery and recovery, David is a model (Picture: David James Seed/Kennedy News)

    Despite a few cracked ribs and bruising, David is recovering well and can’t wait to get back to work.

    The model recently shared his journey from his sunken in chest through two surgeries on his Instagram, to show people the truth behind the dreamy pics on his social media.

    He hopes to inspire other people with the same condition and show them just how far they can come.

    David says: ‘There are so many fake people on Instagram but I wanted to share my life with people.

    ‘I wanted people to know that I don’t just have an Instagram to look pretty, I go through real things – there’s pains and there’s struggles.

    ‘I’m not just a person with a perfectly rounded chest and a six pack. There was a time before that and I have been through a lot and worked really hard to get where I am.

    ‘After I shared my first post, I couldn’t believe how many people messaged me to say they had the same deformity and they had never heard of the surgery.

    ‘I can’t imagine what it must be like living your whole life with a chest like that.

    ‘Essentially I would not have a career working in fashion without the surgery.

    ‘I wouldn’t be able to do topless shoots and the clothes wouldn’t fit me like they do.

    ‘When I started to get all these modelling jobs, it was mad really because I knew I never would have been able to do them if I hadn’t had the operation.

    ‘Apart from my career, I also appreciate the simple things the surgery has given me like being able to go on summer holidays and not having to worry about showing my chest.

    ‘I have been allowed to become a confident young man. I have never worried about taking my shirt off or been insecure with girls.

    ‘You grow into the deformity as well so if I didn’t have the surgery, my shoulders probably would have rolled forward but now I can stand up proud with my shoulders back.

    ‘I can’t contemplate being 25 let alone 35 or 45 and living with a chest like I had. I can’t fathom it.

    ‘I just know that I would not be where I am today if it wasn’t for the surgery. It has changed my life.’

    MORE: Men of Manual campaign challenges male body image in the media

    MORE: Teens who eat breakfast have a better body image than those that skip it, scientists claim


    PIC FROM David James Seed/Kennedy News (PICTURED: DAVID JAMES SEED, 25, IS SIGNED WITH LONDON AGENCY MODELS 1 AND BOSS IN MANCHESTER) A lad with a deformed ???caved in??? chest endured excruciating corrective surgery by having a metal bar bolted to his ribs - only to go on to land a job as a Calvin Klein model. David James Seed, 25, dreaded summer holidays as a youngster for fear of having to undress thanks to a deformity that meant his chest grew inwards. After years of discomfort and embarrassment, David was just 12 when he underwent gruelling surgery to have the condition known as pectus excavatum corrected. David had a curved metal bar placed underneath his sternum and attached to both sides of his rib cage with wire and pins to force the bones back into their correct position. This metal bar put pressure on David\'s ribs and chest leaving the lad in immense pain that felt like being ???crushed under a heavy weight???. But every moment of agony was worth it for David as the surgery allowed him to become a confident young man instead of one too insecure to ever take his shirt off because of his chest deformity. Now a successful full-time model and fashion blogger, David had the bar surgically removed on May 15 and bravely shared photos of his transformation to inspire others suffering from the condition. Now working with the likes of Calvin Klein, Ted Baker and Alfred Dunhill, David thanks the ???life-changing??? operation for his success in his career. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266PIC FROM David James Seed/Kennedy News (PICTURED: DAVID JAMES SEED, 25, IS SIGNED WITH LONDON AGENCY MODELS 1 AND BOSS IN MANCHESTER) A lad with a deformed ???caved in??? chest endured excruciating corrective surgery by having a metal bar bolted to his ribs - only to go on to land a job as a Calvin Klein model. David James Seed, 25, dreaded summer holidays as a youngster for fear of having to undress thanks to a deformity that meant his chest grew inwards. After years of discomfort and embarrassment, David was just 12 when he underwent gruelling surgery to have the condition known as pectus excavatum corrected. David had a curved metal bar placed underneath his sternum and attached to both sides of his rib cage with wire and pins to force the bones back into their correct position. This metal bar put pressure on David\'s ribs and chest leaving the lad in immense pain that felt like being ???crushed under a heavy weight???. But every moment of agony was worth it for David as the surgery allowed him to become a confident young man instead of one too insecure to ever take his shirt off because of his chest deformity. Now a successful full-time model and fashion blogger, David had the bar surgically removed on May 15 and bravely shared photos of his transformation to inspire others suffering from the condition. Now working with the likes of Calvin Klein, Ted Baker and Alfred Dunhill, David thanks the ???life-changing??? operation for his success in his career. SEE KENNEDY NEWS COPY - 0161 697 4266

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    Y/Project is selling 'blue skirt jeans' for £405
    Behold the blue skirts jeans. (Picture: SSENSE)

    Working out what to wear each morning is tough.

    Is it a trousers day or a dress day? Do you need a jacket? Are you in the mood for colour?

    Handily, Y/Project has lent a helping hand by getting rid of one of those questions.

    Behold the skirt jeans, a glorious hybrid of a skirt and jeans so you won’t have to choose between the two.

    Was this decision really the thing holding us back from fashion greatness? Honestly, we doubt it. But we’ll always enjoy a ridiculous hybrid fashion item.

    Y/Project is no stranger to out-there denim. They’re the same brand behind this festival season’s greatest trend, janties, as well as butt-less jeans, a denim jacket with absurdly long sleeves, and detachable jeans that let you change into short-shorts at a moment’s notice.

    We bet your black skinnies are feeling pretty boring now.

    This time around, the wild fashion item on our radar is a sort of A-line skirt meets flares with a straight jeans leg thrown in for good measure.

    Y/Project blue jeans skirt
    (Picture: Y/Project/Ssense)

    The product description doesn’t offer much further guidance, reading: ‘Wide-leg non-stretch denim jeans in blue. Pleated skirt-style construction. Mid-rise. Five-pocket styling. Leather logo patch at back waistband. Twill lining in white.’

    Right.

    So it’s a skirt, basically, but you put one leg in a hole with a cuff on the end.

    Don’t question why. Fashion makes no sense and it’s better to just accept this creation for what it is.

    Oh, and did we mention the blue skirt jeans are £405? Considering you get two clothing items in one, that might not be too outrageous.

    MORE: Fashion website removes ‘offensive’ mini skirts with Allah written on them

    MORE: Prada is the latest fashion house to go fur free

    MORE: Rihanna rocks all-white look as she celebrates fashion launch with swanky pop-up shop in Paris


    Skirt jeans hybridSkirt jeans hybrid

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    A Muslim man and woman smiling
    The vast majority of British Muslim men rarely if ever step into the kitchen (Picture: MMUFFIN for Metro.co.uk)

    Midway through the month of Ramadan, a friend shared a post on Facebook of her husband making samosas.

    It showed a man, in the kitchen, preparing, and then later cooking. Culturally, for many Muslims of South Asian descent, a man preparing food for the family is alien. Yes there are exceptions but the vast majority of British Muslim men rarely if ever step into the kitchen, let alone cook in one.

    As Ramadan is a month of reflection, increased spiritual awareness, learning and of education, to the men out there I ask: why not go out shopping to buy ingredients, step into the kitchen to prepare a meal and serve and feed your family and guests?

    Why not then do the household chore of washing up afterwards?

    Too many of us still expect to be mothered like lost puppies, despite being doctors, lawyers, engineers, bankers, teachers – the list goes on. The kitchen is still too readily thought of as a woman’s domain.

    We could explain this away as a reflection of modern life with traditional gender-role models applied, where men are the breadwinners and women look after the home.

    But increasingly this is no longer the case. The World Economic Forum identifies working Muslim women as a trillion dollar market, with over 50 million joining the workforce since the year 2000 and women being the majority of students at universities in the Muslim world.

    Nor can we say it’s historical: as the classical Muslim scholar and jurist from the 9th century AD, Al-Jahiz observed, not only were women involved in the workforce, but they appeared in public stylishly dressed, and work was just part of everyday life.

    As I sit here typing, I’ve noticed that one of the top buttons of my shalwar kameez (the traditional south Asian outfit of baggy ‘trousers’ and a long shirt) has come off.

    I’m torn between two options: doing as my late father, a surgeon, did and picking up a needle and thread, or passing it onto my mother or even to one of my siblings, smiling like a poor injured cat in need of assistance.

    Gendered stereotypes of women alone being responsible for household chores do not therefore find their origin in Islamic texts, rather they are a reflection of culture and misinterpretation over the ages.

    The lazy part of me anticipates the latter while the politically aware and equal rights campaigner part of me is reminded of Prophet Muhammad’s own example: when asked, Aisha said that Prophet Muhammad would do as everyone else would do, stitch his own shoes, patch his garments, even sew.

    Gendered stereotypes of women alone being responsible for household chores do not therefore find their origin in Islamic texts. Rather they are a reflection of culture and misinterpretation over the ages.

    As Muslims we believe Prophet Muhammad is the best example and insist on following his ‘sunnah’ – the way he lived his life. Yet when it comes to certain things, we move away from what he actually did, adopting a cultural interpretation of everyday roles.

    The word Ramadan comes from the word ‘ramada’ meaning ‘to burn,’ and it refers to fasting as one becomes inflamed by the heat of hunger, especially in the desert environments where the Abrahamic faiths originate from.

    For me, during the month of Ramadan, I am reminded that if, along with the heat from fasting, I do not wish to feel the heat of the fire by way of punishment in the next life, I ought to be more fair in how I live my life.

    This includes adopting my fair share of the household chores, from cooking meals, washing the dishes, vacuuming, and more. And not just during Ramadan.

    For who would have thought that a man making samosas for his family – cooking which is often viewed as a chore – would be a path for him to get closer to God, and make God happy?

    MORE: During Ramadan, I suffered with my eating disorder in silence

    MORE: Muslim’s Ramadan invite flagged up as ‘suspicious’ by Twitter

    MORE: Horny Muslim women like me aren’t supposed to exist during Ramadan


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    Live Action Role Play
    In my ‘other life’, I am a queen (Picture: WeekendHeroes.co.uk)

    I spend six weekends a year pretending to be someone else.

    In my ‘other life’, I am a queen: I’ve presided over trials and negotiated treaties and been involved in magic rituals. I have wept real tears at the fireside over a fallen warrior and experienced genuine shivers of heady terror as I’ve rushed through forests, pursued by a monster.

    I’m not an actress, and I don’t have delusions of grandeur. I’m talking about my hobby as a larper – that’s Live Action Role Player.

    For the uninitiated: live action role play (larp) is improvised play-acting for grown-ups. In essence, a group of people get together, often for days at a time, everyone assumes the role of a fantasy character and acts out their story.

    The game organisers give players dilemmas, moral quandaries and even monsters to respond to and we play in mock ups of genuine villages. I still remember arriving at my first game 10 years ago and wandering between meticulously realised camps complete with historical cooking set ups and hand-embroidered banners and candlelit tents.

    Medieval-themed larp
    Imagine a kind of improvised play-acting for grown-ups (Picture: Kate Townshend)

    I am aware that this is commonly considered a reasonably quirky way for a 30 something professional to spend her time. It can feel strange at first; everyone around you is dressed up, immersed in their role and intent on playing their character, so it quickly becomes normal for you too.

    It was a friend who first convinced me to give larp a try, but the truth is I’ve always been fascinated by these parallel universes.

    I’ve been obsessed with Arthurian legends and fairy tales for as long as I can remember and as a teenager I devoured the Lord of the Rings books. Why wouldn’t I want to experience the closest thing possible to actually living within them?

    For me it’s the ultimate vicarious pleasure. Assuming my character allows me to experience things that are very different from my daily life.

    Whatever stresses I bring with me are pretty much instantly forgotten as soon as I step into role because Esme, my character, isn’t thinking about work or finances or her tax return.

    She’s more likely to be focussed on political wranglings or evil armour or attacks by un-dead knights. I’ve even found larp an effective break when I’ve struggled with severe anxiety in the past. It gets you out of your own head and stops the endless cycle of ‘what if..?’ thoughts dead.

    A live action role play battle
    Battles can be massive with hundreds of participants on each side in conflicts (Picture: WeekendHeroes.co.uk)

    It’s not just about escapism though. Larp is a safe space in which you can become more courageous or more confident, or more open – I know larpers who are better at public speaking in their day jobs after years of practice giving rousing battlefield pep talks, and others who have cried over in-game deaths in a way they haven’t felt able to with real life bereavements, processing their grief at a level removed.

    I know that I’m braver in real life as a direct result of ‘pretending’ to be brave at larp. I’ve also ended up mixing with a far wider variety of people than I suspect I ever would have otherwise.

    It’s a shame that larping has something of a PR problem, assumed to be the sole domain of sweaty, single men who still live with their parents, because it is anything but.

    To indulge in larp’s collaborative storytelling you need imagination and a willingness to talk to people, which means that it’s actually an intensely social hobby with a diverse range of followers.

    A woman dressed as a medieval character
    There’s something oddly cathartic about a fireside lament over a fallen warrior (Picture: Oliver Facey)

    Some of my very best friends now are people I’ve met through the hobby, and this includes my husband.

    He first made my heart beat faster dressed as a knight in shining armour. But when the game ends each day (usually in the early hours of the morning!) there’s a chance to get to know the real people behind the characters you’ve interacted with.

    Larp remains a hugely important part of both our lives and I think sharing a hobby like this makes our relationship stronger. It definitely gives us something interesting to talk about over dinner.

    The success of shows like Game of Thrones demonstrates that the draw of these fantasy worlds is actually far more mainstream than people assume. And ultimately I think it’s the social aspects that have kept me hooked on the game for so long.

    For that weekend I get to live alongside the people I’m playing the game with, forming unbreakable alliances, bitter grudges and fervently held beliefs. We get to enjoy intense conversations, save each other’s lives and create beautiful, hilarious, tragic, spine-chilling stories.

    There’s really nothing else like it. Now, excuse me. I’m off to try on my crown.

    MORE: Even in Game of Thrones’ fantasy world disabled people are still not good enough

    MORE: Vikings star Alicia Agneson shades Game Of Thrones season 8 finale and it’s everything

    MORE: Piers Morgan slams snowflake generation as he joins Game of Thrones cast to attack ‘ridiculous’ season 8 petition


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    Uber can take you anywhere.

    From a last-minute dash to the airport to a drunken journey home after missing the last train – there aren’t many places an Uber can’t get you to.

    Now they have taken that one step further and are plunging customers to the watery depths of the Great Barrier Reef.

    No, Toyota hasn’t developed an underwater Prius – these Ubers are submarines. So, obviously, they’re calling it scUber.

    Uber is partnering with Queensland, Australia, to allow visitors to hail the world’s first ridesharing submarine, which will take them on a one-hour tour of the reef.

    The experience is available from 27th May until 3rd June, and all you have to do is log onto the app and book your ride. But it’s not exactly the same is booking a normal Uber.

    The underwater Uber
    Don’t forget to make small talk with your Uber diver (Picture: Tourism and Events Queensland)

    After booking, an Uber operator will call to confirm that you didn’t order the trip by mistake, they will also check the riders’ weights.

    And it costs slightly more than a typical Friday night surge charge. The fare is £1,625 for two people – and that includes transport by helicopter to the submarine’s exact departure point.

    Uber on the water
    (Picture: Tourism and Events Queensland)

    The driver will be rated like any other Uber driver – so be sure to make pleasant small talk.

    The best thing is that this whole venture is all for a good cause.

    Uber underwater
    (Picture: Tourism and Events Queensland)

    Uber will match every fare with a donation to Citizens of the Great Barrier Reef. A Cairns-based conservation group which works to protect the giant reef from the effects of climate change, coral bleaching and overtourism.

    So we can’t think of a better way to explore one of the world’s most incredible sites of natural beauty.

    MORE: Researchers discover the two diet mistakes that are linked to cancer

    MORE: Can’t decide between jeans or a skirt? Just get this £405 hybrid instead

    MORE: Man with deformed ‘caved in’ chest is now a Calvin Klein model


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    Shane and Marc hold their new identity cards at the household registration office in Taipei
    Shane and Marc hold their new identity cards at the household registration office in Taipei (Picture: REUTERS/Tyrone Siu)

    Last week Taiwan became the first country in Asia to legalise same-sex marriage.

    Today, that big decision comes into effect – and hundreds of couples are marking the occasion by rushing to the household registration office to tie the knot.

    It makes sense when you think about it. If you’ve been in a loving relationship for ages and only now can you get married legally, you probably don’t want to wait any longer.

    Plus, the day Taiwan officially legalised marriage equality is a pretty cool anniversary date.

    Taiwan’s interior ministry said around 300 couples are expected to register today.

    Take a look at some of the joyous moments below.

    Shane Lin and Marc Yuan kiss on their first day of marriage in Taipei, on the day same-sex marriage became legal in Taiwan
    Shane Lin and Marc Yuan kiss on their first day of marriage in Taipei, on the day same-sex marriage became legal in Taiwan (Picture: EPA/DAVID CHANG)
    Shane Lin is comforted by his partner Marc Yuan and a friend during a wedding ceremony in Shinyi district in Taipei on May 24, 2019
    Tears of joy after years of waiting (Picture: AFP/Getty Images)
    Two couples seal their legal marriage with a kiss at the registration office in Xingyi District in Taipei, Taiwan, Friday, May 24, 2019
    Two couples seal their legal marriage with a kiss at the registration office in Xingyi District in Taipei, Taiwan, Friday, May 24, 2019 (Picture: AP Photo/Johnson Lai)
    Two same-sex couples pose for a photo at the household registration office to register their legal marriage in Xingyi District in Taipei, Taiwan, Friday, May 24, 2019
    We’d just like to take a moment to appreciate those pink suits. Gorgeous. (Picture: AP Photo/Johnson Lai)
    A newly married couple hug during the first day of civil registration for same-sex marriage in Taipei, Taiwan
    A newly married couple embrace against a rainbow wall (Picture: EPA/RITCHIE B. TONGO)
    A same-sex married couple kiss
    There’s a lot of love and happiness today (Picture: EPA/RITCHIE B. TONGO)
    Gay newlyweds walk on a giant rainbow flag at a pro same-sex marriage party after registering their marriage in Taipei, Taiwan May 24, 2019. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu
    Pure joy (Picture: REUTERS/Tyrone Siu)

    MORE: Harry and Meghan share behind-the-scenes pictures on first wedding anniversary

    MORE: Ikea’s big blue bag gets a rainbow makeover to celebrate Pride

    MORE: Arthur creator slams Alabama ban on Mr Ratburn’s gay wedding episode: ‘Why is there this discomfort?’


    Hundreds of same-sex couples in Taiwan are rushing to the household registration office on the first day that a landmark decision to legalize same-sex marriage has taken effect.Hundreds of same-sex couples in Taiwan are rushing to the household registration office on the first day that a landmark decision to legalize same-sex marriage has taken effect.

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    What happens to your vagina when you're pregnant?
    (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    Pregnancy is a weird time.

    The obvious stuff (bump, being sick, allegedly ‘glowing’) is well documented. But there are a lot of other side affects of gestating a human which are kept on the down low.

    Specifically the ones which happen to your vagina.

    Discharge

    One of the first things that happens to your vagina during pregnancy is a change in the amount of discharge – specifically an increase.

    While this can be alarming, it’s generally not cause for concern. A white or clear discharge is not a sign of anything untoward.

    If your discharge is brown, pink or blood stained then you may want to contact your doctor. Spotting during pregnancy is extremely normal and not usually a sign of miscarriage, but worth checking on.

    Sensitivity

    One of the nice things about pregnancy is that your vagina becomes more sensitive thanks to increased blood flow.

    This can result in easier and more intense orgasms.

    Also, more good news, many women report having better orgasms after pregnancy.

    Thrush and other infections

    During pregnancy your immune system is not as strong as usual, meaning you’re more likely to get ill in general.

    Hormonal changes in your body mean you’ve got more oestrogen, which helps the thrush bacteria to thrive. What fun.

    Women are also more vulnerable to Bacterial Vaginosis and UTIs during pregnancy. See your doctor if you think you have either, and stay well hydrated to avoid the latter.

    Queefing

    There isn’t any official news on why women queef more during pregnancy, but anecdotally we know that they do.

    Luckily it’s harmless, so nothing to worry about.

    pH changes

    The pH of your vagina is usually around 4.5 or below.

    During pregnancy your vagina may become more acidic. Most people won’t notice the change but if you’re very sensitive it might smell different.

    Colour

    Due to increased blood flow to your vagina you might notice a darkening in its colour. It’ll go back to its original colour after your pregnancy is over.

    Varicose veins

    Yes, you can get them in your vagina. We’re sorry. We don’t make the rules, we just write about them.

    Size

    Some vaginas become engorged during pregnancy due to increased blood flow. Just as your feet, fingers and nose can swell up, so can your vagina.

    If you’re worried about any swelling during pregnancy you should speak to your midwife or GP.

    Incontinence

    Yes, it’s possible that you’ll have issues with wetting yourself before the baby arrives.

    It’s very common, but it can be stressful and embarrassing. Try to do regular kegels, and if you’re worried about it again, see your GP.

    MORE: I pretend to be a queen on weekends, and here’s why

    MORE: Why your vagina leaves ‘bleached’ patches in your underwear


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    There's a reason you shouldn't get your hair dyed the day before your period starts
    There’s a reason you shouldn’t get your hair dyed the day before your period starts (Picture: Getty/Metro.co.uk)

    If you’re planning a major hair transformation, it’s worth checking your menstrual cycle against your calendar when you book in that bleach appointment.

    Ask any hair colourist and they’ll advise you not to get your hair bleached right before your period begins.

    Why? Because all that bleach on your scalp will hurt more than usual.

    That’s because your pain sensitivity changes throughout your hormonal cycle. The bad news: just as you’re getting plagued with cramps and feeling teary at the sight of puppies, that’s when you become more sensitive to pain and it’ll feel like nasty stuff hurts more. Great.

    The good news: knowing that means you can schedule around it, avoiding unpleasant sensations in the days before or during your period.

    Sophie Hilton, founder of Not Another Salon, tells Metro.co.uk: ‘Ask any hairdresser in the works and they will tell you that time if the month is a factor.

    ‘We know purely by experience of watching clients twitch in our chair.

    ‘But scientifically there is a reason too, your pain threshold is much lower sure to a drop in oestrogen, and that goes for everything.

    woman with purple dyed hair and dark roots
    If you need a root touch-up, wait ’til after your period (Picture: Getty)

    ‘I always say to my clients “bleaches, waxes and any 50 Shades of Grey malarkey is off the cards”.’

    This isn’t just one of those old wives’ tales. Science backs up the idea that you’ll find those scalp tingles more irritating when it’s a few days before your period starts – because you’ll find everything gets more sensitive around this time of month.

    Dr Alex Eskander, Consultant Gynaecologist at The Gynae Centre, says: ‘I have had patients report a sensitivity to pain just before menstruation.

    ‘This can occur due to the accumulation of blood in the uterus which results in uterine contractions; this opens the cervix, releasing the period blood 2-3 days later.

    ‘These mild contractions result in cramps before and during the period, making the uterus sensitive to touch.

    ‘Some women may notice pain or sensitivity during intercourse due to this.

    ‘Additionally, research from the University of Michigan (2003) has suggested that changes in women’s estrogen levels, like those that occur during the menstrual cycle and pregnancy, can affect pain sensitivity.

    ‘The study shows that high estrogen levels can lead the brain’s natural painkiller system to respond by releasing endorphins which suppress the pain signals to the brain.

    ‘When estrogen was low, this same painkiller system didn’t control the pain nearly as effectively, resulting in a higher sensitivity to pain.’

    It’s worth noting that not everyone responds to their menstrual cycle in the same way. Some women report being more sensitive during menstruation, whereas others show the complete opposite trend. As with lots of things to do with women’s health, there hasn’t been enough research and more studies are required to work out why these differences happen.

    But if you do happen to be booking in your first scalp bleach and are worried about the imminent burning sensation all over your head, consider planning your appointment outside the time you’re PMS-ing.

    MORE: What you need to know about the reality behind those Instagram hair colour transformations

    MORE: Why your vagina leaves ‘bleached’ patches in your underwear

    MORE: Everything you need to know before you dye your hair blue


    Why you shouldn\'t get your hair bleached on the first day of your periodWhy you shouldn\'t get your hair bleached on the first day of your period

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    babies are being named after plants and flowers

    Plant parents have infiltrated the actual-parents-of-humans world.

    No longer are us houseplant-obsessed millennials left alone to chat to Karen the cactus or Susan the snake plant. We’re starting to have children, and our passion for greenery is having an impact.

    According to a report from trend analysts McCrindle, plant-inspired baby names will be a big trend for 2019, alongside royal picks (yep, Archie will increase in popularity, just as Charlotte did before it), gender neutral names, and unique choices designed to for easy Instagram handles.

    In the top 100 names given to babies in Australia in 2019, there are quite a few inspired by nature.

    Willow is at spot 10, Ivy is 18th, Lily 22nd, Violet 39th, Poppy 41st, Daisy 47th, Rose 56th, Jasmine 63rd, and Olive 79th.

    Of the top five girls’ names that most significantly increased in popularity in the 2010s, three had a botanical theme.

    From 2010 to 2018, Willow increased 64 positions, Violet increased 53 positions, and Ivy increased 43 positions (now at 18th position).

    woman working with baby on her lap and potted plant on her desk
    Babies and plants – the perfect combo (Picture: Getty)

    Sadly, there don’t appear to be any babies yet named after the super trendy houseplants, such as a little Monstera or Palm (although Kim and Kanye have come close, naming their latest sprog Psalm).

    Floral names remain the more popular choice over greenery, but if you are looking to get inspired by the succulents and potted palms around your living room, there are plenty of pretty lovely botanical names to choose from.

    We’ve popped some ideas below, because as much as we think Cactus would be a deeply cool name for a baby, you might want some other options.

    Botanical baby name ideas:

    From flowering plants to potted palms, here are some botanical baby name ideas you might not have considered.

    • Acacia
    • Aloe
    • Alocasia
    • Areca
    • Althaea
    • Begonia
    • Calla
    • Calathea
    • Camellia
    • Cypress
    • Dahlia
    • Dracaena
    • Fern
    • Forsythia
    • Freesia
    • Heather
    • Iris
    • Ivy
    • Jacinda
    • Jasmine
    • Kentia
    • Lantana
    • Lavender
    • Linnaea
    • Peperomia
    • Primrose
    • Prue
    • Sakura
    • Themeda
    • Willow
    • Zinnia

    MORE: These vintage baby names are making a comeback

    MORE: These are the most popular baby names of 2019 so far

    MORE: These are the most popular Disney inspired baby names in the UK


    Mother kissing her newborn baby boy at homeMother kissing her newborn baby boy at home

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    A makeup artist who uses a wheelchair is raising awareness of the abuse she receives by writing hurtful words strangers call her across her face.

    Doaa Shayea, 21, was born with spina bifida.

    She has posted images of herself with the words such as ‘sp*z, ‘r*tard’ and ‘ugly’ on her face to highlight the impact cruel words can have on those who are ‘different’.

    Doaa, from Plymouth, Devon, said: ‘I do a good job of hiding it but I want to show there is damage underneath and makeup is my mask.

    ‘So with my makeup design, I wanted everyone to see what disabled people still have to put up with in 2019.

    ‘It is like the words I write on my face – r*tard, bedridden – I get called them. It’s hurtful.’

    Doaa said it was while scrolling through her Instagram feed, being bombarded with summery festival makeup looks, that she realised no looks highlighted disability.

    Doaa with the abuse across her face
    Doaa wrote the abuse over her face (Picture: Doaa Shayea / SWNS)

    She added: ‘I don’t feel disability has been accepted and it really does frustrate me.’

    Doaa shared a video of her makeup on her Facebook page, hoping to inspire others to not let words define them.

    She said: ‘A lot of the time – to my face – I get people saying “it’s such a shame you’re pretty, it’s wasted on you”.

    ‘I had a guy on the bus come up to me and look at me with the most sympathetic look.

    ‘Then he said “it really is a shame you’re so beautiful as you’re never going to do anything with it because you’re in a wheelchair”.

    ‘What can you say to that?

    Doaa's inspiring makeup
    She has been called a ‘r*tard’ (Picture: Doaa Shayea / SWNS)

    ‘As soon as you’re seen in a wheelchair or with any disability, that beauty is gone. The wheelchair is always going to be seen before I’m going to be seen.’

    Born in Yemen, Doaa moved to the Devon with her family when she was six years old and swapped her crutches for a wheelchair a few years later.

    ‘I used to be really paranoid being on crutches as I had a limp and I was always aware that people were staring at me,’ she said.

    ‘Now, they still stare, but I can whizz right by them and speed off.’

    Doaa said she believed people ‘put a limitation’ on her straight away and that was something she wanted to break.

    ‘I can do everything anyone else can do,’ she said.

    MORE: Plant-themed baby names are a major trend right now

    MORE: Why you shouldn’t dye your hair in the days right before your period


    SEI_69166920SEI_69166920

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    The organic wine is £6.99
    The Malbec has won awards (Picture: Getty/Aldi)

    Aldi is launching a new award-winning, organic Malbec for just £6.99 a bottle.

    The new Exquisite Organic Malbec won silver at the recent Decanter World Wine Awards. Yep, it’s winning awards before it’s even hit the shelves.

    It was judged by a panel of 200 world-renowned wine experts, including 70 Masters of Wine.

    The Malbec beat a load of amazing wines from around the world in a number of blind taste tests.

    In total, Aldi was awarded 49 accolades for its wines, including eight silver awards.

    Other wines which were a success with the judges included Aldi’s Exquisite Leyda Sauvignon Blanc, £5.49, Exquisite Crémant du Jura, £8.29 and Exquisite Côtes de Provence Rosé, which costs £6.99.

    In other Aldi news, the supermarket has launched some vegan sausage rolls, alongside some vegan burgers.

    Mae’s Kitchen Vegan No Sausage Rolls cost £1.19 for a pack of four.

    A single Greggs vegan sausage roll is £1, so Aldi’s offering is quite the bargain.

    The sausage rolls are wrapped in golden puff pastry and are made using soya.

    Julie Ashfield, Managing Director of Buying at Aldi, says: ‘The launch of our new vegan range is in response to our growing, ethically inspired customer base, looking for delicious alternatives to meat and another example of our ongoing commitment to cater for all diets, at everyday low prices. We look forward to expanding our vegan offering even further over the coming months.’

    MORE: Apparently, whether you drink red or white wine could say a lot about your personality

    MORE: Aldi is looking for 30 new wine tasters


    Award-winning ?6.99 organic Malbec drops at Aldi next weekAward-winning ?6.99 organic Malbec drops at Aldi next week

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    Toni and her 13 week old son, Bobby
    Tonis fake tan fail didn’t go down well with her son (Picture: Kennedy News and Media)

    We do love a fake tan gone wrong… but it turns out babies aren’t big fans.

    Mum Toni Morton managed to take a photo of the moment her baby son saw his mum’s green tinge. He wasn’t pleased.

    Toni, 25, had been looking forward to her first night out since giving birth. Her friend recommended ST Moriz medium tanning mousse for a bit of a glow, which she dutifully applied.

    Two hours later, Toni’s tan was getting darker and darker, and before long she’d turned a fetching shade of green.

    When 13-week-old Bobby saw his mum’s new look, he burst out crying.

    Toni said: ‘When I first saw the colour I was fuming. I thought ‘I’m turning into The Hulk’.

    ‘But when Bobby started cry, I was panicking and wondering what to do – it was scaring him. I don’t think he recognised me.

    ‘He was initially asleep when I put it on but a couple of hours later I could hear him awake in his Moses basket so went to see if he was alright.

    ‘The moment he saw me he started crying – his bottom lip dropped and that was it.

    Toni's fake tan fail saw her turn a shade of green, which her son didn't particularly like
    We don’t think Bobby’s a fan (Picture: Kennedy News)

    ‘I gave him a bottle and he even cried through that. I ended up sitting him in a chair and putting TV on so he would calm down – it took half an hour.’

    Toni was lucky – once she showered her skin turned a lovely colour. But at least we all get to enjoy the pictures of the fleeting moment Bobby thought his mum had turned into Shrek.

    ‘I’m really pale so I fancied a change,’ said Toni. ‘I followed the instructions, put it on and I got darker and darker, then started turning green.

    ‘The bottle says leave it on for around six hours or overnight, then you wash it off in the shower like you would a spray tan. I had it on for two hours and it was turning green.

    ‘This was only medium, they have dark and ultra dark as well.

    ‘I was scrubbing in the shower worried it wouldn’t come off and even text my mum to say “I can’t go out the house tomorrow”.

    ‘She text me the next day asking if I needed anything from the shops because she thought I couldn’t leave the house.’

    St Moriz declined to comment.

    MORE: Woman shares hilarious photos of her unfortunate fake tan fail

    MORE: Man finds out why you shouldn’t spoon your girlfriend after she has fake tanned

    MORE: Plant-themed baby names are a major trend right now


    A mum caught the moment her baby was left crying in terror because she turned into The Incredible HulkA mum caught the moment her baby was left crying in terror because she turned into The Incredible Hulk

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    Don't ask people about having a second child. Picture: Reuters COMP (no PSD; PS crashed and only recovered flat)
    When’s the next one, then? (Picture: Reuters)

    Bookies have opened betting on when Meghan and Harry’s next child will be born, just three weeks since the arrival of their first child, Archie Mountbatten-Windsor.

    Bookies Coral reckon that 2020 will be the year that Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announce that they are expecting a second baby, at 5-4.

    2021 comes next in the betting at 2-1, while it is 8-1 for a second pregnancy to be announced this year.

    Coral’s Harry Aitkenhead said: ‘It’s almost certain that Meghan and Harry will add to their blossoming family in the next few years and we think a second pregnancy is most likely to come next year.

    ‘It’s 8-1 for Meghan to announce she is expecting again by the end of the year and whilst the odds may be long you can’t rule it out.’

    While having bookies taking bets on your reproduction is more of a Royal problem than an average one, the pressure to have a second child is extremely common.

    You don’t have to be a duchess for people to start asking when the next one is coming before the stitches in your perineum have dissolved – women from all walks of life report being asked almost as soon as the first is born when they’ll be having number two.

    The NHS recommends that women wait a minimum of 12 months between pregnancies, and some studies suggest that a gap of 18 to 24 months is ideal. So a 2020 baby wouldn’t allow Meghan enough time to recover.

    Given that one in 10 mums experiences post natal depression and around 20,000 women per year are left with PTSD after birth, lots of women understandably don’t feel like having another child.

    Even if your birth was easy and you take to motherhood like a duck to water, that doesn’t mean that you’re gagging for another baby.

    Experts predict that by 2022 more than half of UK families will stop at one child. In 2015 47% of couples had already stopped at one child.

    Blame finances, environmental concerns or just a lack of desire to do the baby thing twice, having one child is an increasingly popular option and makes the assumption that a couple are going to have a second one even more redundant.

    As well as those who don’t want a second child, not all couples are able to conceive a second time. Known as secondary infertility, around one in seven couples will struggle to conceive. It can be due to stress, factors surrounding the previous birth or the fact that the mother is older therefore sometimes less fertile.

    Whatever the reason, secondary infertility is a real struggle and therefore it is not safe to assume that because someone has had one child they will be able to have another one.

    Asking ‘when’s the next one?’ could actually be prodding at an agonising secret struggle.

    There’s also every chance that the woman in question is intending to have another baby at some point in the future but doesn’t want prying questions into her reproductive planning.

    There are so many questions you can ask a new parent. How are you finding it? What’s your favourite part of being a parent? Are you going to any groups? Is there anything I can help with? Would you like a cup of tea?

    When is number two really does not need to be one of them.

    But at least most of us won’t have to cope with the indignity of the bookies putting odds on when it will happen.


    Don\'t ask people about having a second child.Don\'t ask people about having a second child.Don\'t ask people about having a second child.Don\'t ask people about having a second child.

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