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

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    Illustration of six people, including women and men standing together
    Black nail polish, blusher, and plenty of fun Insta filters are a prerequisite (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    Gen Z are the ones that’ll save our planet from certain death, but all they get stick for is being the Instagram generation and pranking each other on TikTok.

    What us oldies need to realise, however, is neither of these things are mutually exclusive, and actually those crazy kids can be all about the A E S T H E T I C while still being super smart and switched on.

    And what would any of our teenage years have been without subcultures? Whether you were an emo, a mod, a grunger, or a punk, it felt – at the time – like the most vital part of your identity ever. For some of you, it still is – and there’s nothing wrong with that.

    To get to grips with the latest subculture to come from Gen Z, you have understand who they are and where they came from.

    Nihilism (or at least ironic jokes of it) will come naturally to this age group, faced with an unstable political and environmental climate.

    They’ve also grown up completely online, whereas those that came before – aka, me – didn’t even get to visit the Polly Pocket website until I was of school age, and didn’t have a smart phone until I was at university.

    Instead of having to congregate at the park and drink cider until they were socially lubricated enough to swap Bring Me The Horizon tracks on bluetooth, kids can go online, show people who they are at their will, and chat to their agemates from across the world while sitting in their bedroom.

    That’s where e-boys and e-girls come in. The e stands for electronic, just like in email, and they’re extremely online, extremely desirable to other young people (and old perverts and orbiters, but we’ll get to that later), and extremely ironic.

    E-girls and boys are like the popular kids at school, except on TikTok. They can premeditate their funny captions, edit their photos to fit the rest of their look, and choose what presence they have.

    So, with the history of the e-person done and dusted (and overly pathologised) let’s look at what it takes to become one of them.

    How to be an e-boy


    E-boys are often conflated with the softboy, who also exhibit many of the same sensitive traits and love of all things ‘different’. However, not all e-boys are softboys, and vice versa.

    According to Wikipedia – or at least the rogue editor who added this in – an e-boy is ‘a young adolescent boy who has a following of lonely 13 year-old girls who think they’re dating because said boys reply to their comments saying things such as “luv u” and “xo.”‘

    Hopefully there’s nobody over the age of 13 messaging 13-year-olds at all, but despite the fact citations are very much needed here, there is a nugget of truth when it comes to the luv u and xo comments. Kisses, hearts, uwu, emoji, and other forms of sickly sweet communication in captions and messages is common for an e-boy.


    As for the look, it’s not very far off from the skater one we know and love from our own youths, but with a somewhat more feminine twist. Pair your Thrasher tee with a chain on your jeans and some black nail polish, as well as dying your hair peachy pink for the e-boy vibe.

    Beanie hats and chokers are optional, but really complete your descent into getting 87,000 likes on a TikTok where you do the ‘rock on’ hand sign and stick your tongue out.

    Oh, and make jokes about having depression and edit barbed wire into your photos. That works, too.

    How to be an e-girl


    The e-girl look is somewhat rooted in anime and Japanese Harajuku/Kawaii fashion, as well as borrowing from the goth subculture.

    In terms of clothing, you can either go full pastel or opt for plaid and black, with long socks, chunky trainers, school-style skirts, and slogan tees reigning supreme.

    Gifs and slogans in your Insta pics are required, with love hearts and flowers always doing the trick.

    However, to truly master becoming an e-girl, you need to master their makeup. Blusher is used heavily on the nose and cheeks (as is highlighter on the tip of the nose) and black eyeliner is used to create cat eye flicks and hearts and stars under the eyes. Get creative with it, taking inspiration from the likes of HBO’s Euphoria and those you see online.


    The e-girl can be seen as somewhat problematic, due to the proximity to a lolita-type act (featuring ahegao faces and a babyish aesthetic) that attracts older men who are known as ‘orbiters’. On RedPill and incel discussion boards, these orbiters are a topic of derision, but the e-girls they admire and pander to are also denigrated as ‘looking for an ego boost or attention’.

    In reality, though, e-girls simply like what they like, and don’t need to be shamed for the fact they’re enjoying fashion and makeup and want to flex online just like all of us.

    MORE: Why you should book a break to New Brunswick in Canada

    MORE: What is a karmic relationship and how do you know if you’re in one?

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    Split compilation of four images, featuring someone pouring wine into a glass, a red maze, a man grilling food and a woman serving dishes to a table
    Head indoors for all the fun (Picture: Anya Hindmarch/British Street Food Awards/Wine Car Boot/Getty)

    The hot weather may have evaporated, taking with it late nights in the pub garden, summer festivals and tinnies in the park, but there is still plenty of fun to be had – indoors.

    Autumn has now well and truly arrived, and we have put together a list of the best events coming up this month.

    From London Fashion Week pop-ups to drinking wine from a car boot and finding love at a Mexican-themed singles night, we’ve got you covered.

    September is going to be sublime.

    Make your way through a maze at London Fashion Week

    London Fashion Week will run from 13 to 18 September this year, and Anya Hindmarch has something special planned for the occasion.

    Much like previous years, the English fashion designer has put together an art installation for people to marvel at. Previously, she has showcased a huge woven tunnel known as ‘The Weave Project’, but in 2019 it’s an altogether different vibe.

    Say hello to the Postbox Maze.

    The immersive art piece, which was created by maze and puzzle designer Adrian Fisher, is bright red (like a postbox, we presume) and is described as ‘a unique tessellated design’. Inside the maze, you can  find letters and other correspondence from The Postal Museum, some of which date back hundreds of years.

    Postbox Maze is located inside Brewer Street Car Park in Soho and will be open from Friday 13 September until Monday 16 September.

    Tickets cost £13 and will get you 30 minutes to explore (and try your best to get out of) the maze.

    Drink wine from a car boot

    If wine is your jam, grab a glass and head over to the Bloomberg Arcade in the City.

    The Wine Car Boot, an independent market that showcases the very best in independent wines, is back for another year so you can sample, sniff and swirl grapes of all shapes and sizes.

    There are usually some great deals to be had, and this year’s traders include Vinoteca, Berry Bros & Rudd and The Winemakers Club, as well as The New Zealand Cellar, Lea & Sandeman and Vagabond wines.

    The event is free, the vino is not.

    Have a glass while at the market or buy a few bottles to take home.

    If you’re feeling adventurous, try the tasting pack. For £12, you will get five tokens to try different wines.

    Go looking for a lover at a Mexican-themed singles night

    The team at Rande’s pop-up restaurant in Dalston are tired of online dating.

    So, this September, they are encouraging people to meet IRL instead, with a new singles night dubbed ‘Rande’s revolt against Tinder’.

    How does it work? Get yourself a ticket and head to the venue, where you will be placed in a group with strangers at a communcal table.

    Chat, flirt and bond over Mexican cuisine with four dishes on offer, including vegetarian options. This is fine dining, which means no tacos, burritos or nachos in sight.

    They’ve stocked up on tequila though.

    Tickets cost £39.50 and the event takes place on Thursday 12 September. If you can’t make that date, you could always go along to the one in October.

    Channel your inner artist and draw a yogi

    Illustrator and yoga teacher Kate Philipson has combined the peaceful science of yoga with art in this yoga life drawing class.

    The class will start with a breathing exercise to get you into the drawing mood, and then you will put pen to paper as a live yogi holds various poses.

    No previous experience is required, and all materials are included.

    The event will be hosted at Second Home in London Fields on Wednesday 11 September and tickets cost £15 (which includes a glass of wine).


    Be a street food critic for a day

    It’s the 10th anniversary of the British Street Food Awards and the final will take place next weekend on 13 and 14 September.

    Not only will you be able to munch on delectable dishes from the 16 finalists who will battle it out for the top spot, but each guest will also be able to vote for their favourite trader. A panel of judges will then decide the winner.

    Some of the finalists include Kokodoo, Makasih, Buffalo Truck, Utter Waffle and Homeboys, and there will be flavours from all over the world, such as Malaysian fried chicken roti, Filipino grilled chicken and Indian slow-cooked lamb burgers.

    The awards will be held at Hawker House near Canada Water and tickets cost just £5 (but, as expected, you’ll have to pay extra for the food). Come hungry.

    Eat cheese at a new market

    Speaking of street food, Kerb has just launched a brand new market space in Covent Garden’s Seven Dials.

    The food hall will feature a mix of traders including Wheelcake Island – think Taiwanese pancakes – Club Mexicana with its vegan dishes, Big Shot Coffee + Donuts, Monty’s Deli (try the Reuben sandwich) and Claw, a seafood joint that will serve up sustainable lobster rolls, plus much more.

    However, the trader that is on everyone’s lips only serves one type of product: cheese.

    Please welcome the world’s first-ever cheese conveyor belt, which will feature 25 items – it really is too gouda to be true (sorry).

    OK, so this one isn’t technically an event, but it’s an all-you-can-devour-cheese on a revolving belt, so we couldn’t resist adding it to the list.

    Watch a scary classic in a pop-up cinema

    If there’s anything that screams autumn, it’s cinema nights.

    Temple cinema has returned to the Andaz hotel and this year’s theme is scary classics, hosted together with East End Film Festival.

    Watch on in horror as Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) confesses to seeing dead people in The Sixth Sense, marvel at Anthony Hopkins’ superb acting skills as Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs or enjoy Alfred Hitchcock’s hit movie, Psycho.

    It’s the perfect excuse to hold someone’s hand during date night.

    There are two ticket types; fork out £15 for just the movie or splash the cash for the £40 option, which includes a bag of popcorn and a Bento box from Miyako.

    MORE: Run, don’t walk, to B&M for these Peppa Pig potato faces and veggie shapes

    MORE: Fancy a treat? Restaurants in Chinatown give away 2,000 dumplings for free

    MORE: Morrisons is selling two tubs of Roses, Celebrations, Quality Street and Heroes for £7

    Best indoor activities when the weather gets colderBest indoor activities when the weather gets colder

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    Illustration of woman squatting with weights
    ‘The first thing to consider is what is most important to you and what you are actually able to consistently do.’ (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    We are all time-poor, so fitting in a workout at any point during our hectic daily schedules feels like a win.

    But is there a perfect time to get a sweat on? Can the time that you choose to workout impact how effective it is for your body and overall health?

    Some people swear by earl morning HIIT classes, but for others a late-night weights session when the gym has mostly emptied is the perfect time to get in the zone.

    We asked the experts to find out if there is any truth in the claim that the perfect time of day can supercharge your workout.

    Ultimately, it depends what your goals are.

    ‘The best time to exercise may be perceived from varying points of view, but the two main ideals would usually take into consideration whether you are training for performance or simply for lifestyle convenience,’ explains Lawrence Price, Fiit trainer.

    ‘The first thing to consider is what is most important to you and what you are actually able to consistently do. After all, consistency is the key so don’t set a time of day that is unrealistic over the longer term.’

    We have already written about how to maintain consistency with your workout plan, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy.

    illustration of two women running together
    ‘The key is to take some time to self-assess when you feel your most energetic.’ (Picture: Ella Byworth for Metro.co.uk)

    With busy working schedules and family commitments, it’s easy for fitness to take a backseat. So if you want to make real changes you need to be able to build fitness or sport into your schedule in a non-disruptive way.

    ‘Some people may be better suited to train in the late afternoon for performance, but due to work commitments they might be forced to train in the early morning when they may not be at their optimal physical state according to their natural biorhythms,’ explains Lawrence.

    ‘In the busy modern world, allowances like this are commonplace when planning your training – unless you are a professional athlete of course! The key is to prioritise what is important for you – training for true performance, or for overall general well-being within a busy working lifestyle.’

    Once you know what you’re aiming for, the next step is to figure out what works best for you specifically. Contrary to popular fitness myths, there isn’t one ideal time to workout – it very much depends on a wide range of individual factors.

    ‘The best time to exercise will be personal to you,’ says Lawrence. ‘It may also evolve over the chapters of your life. A teenager may find early morning training sessions a struggle but when they hit their 30s, early mornings may become their most effective time to train.

    ‘The key is to take some time to self-assess when you feel your most energetic and to test that out by training for performance at those times.

    How to motivate yourself to workout

    1. Book into a class
    Booking a class can be a great idea when you are lacking motivation – having an instructor there to guide and motivate you can be that extra incentive you may need to help you complete your workout for that day. There is an abundance of fitness classes available for all interests and levels of fitness – and so many opportunities to try something new.

    2. Work out with a friend
    Working out with a friend provides extra accountability – you may find you are less likely to cancel on your friends, it also provides an extra social opportunity.

    3. Work out before work
    It’s a great feeling when you have finished your workout before the day has even begun. Getting your movement in before work has anecdotally shown to boost production levels for the day – and should your day go off track, your workout is already done.

    4. Schedule movement into your diary
    Scheduling your exercise in your diary like an appointment ensures your workout time is protected – working out on regular days/times can also help establish a routine.

    5. Hire a PT
    Hiring a PT offers the best accountability there is – as well as a personalised programme, they also provide buckets of motivation and hopefully a lot of fun along the way.

    Hannah Lewin, personal trainer

    ‘Some people love to train early morning on an empty stomach, for example, whereas I have personally discovered that I train best late morning after I have allowed my breakfast to digest.’

    Lawrence says that even when you know what works best for you, training outside of those windows isn’t exactly going to do you any harm. He explains that when he is doing ‘maintenance’ training sessions he will often workout outside of his optimum time periods.

    ‘But if I want to participate in a high-performance training session, such as a CrossFit open workout, then I will plan accordingly and specifically identify my prime to train to hit it,’ he explains.

    ‘On the other side of the coin, if I am training for general fat loss and not performance, then I will most likely want to keep my medium-low energy output ticking over during a 24hr period. Meaning I will do a light training session in the morning before breakfast and then again in the late afternoon or evening.

    ‘Training times are therefore both personal and goal-specific.’

    Ultimately, if you know your goals and you know yourself – figuring out the best time to workout should be obvious. It will be when you feel most up for it.

    Just like how some people are chipper in the mornings and others are sociable night owls – working out is the same. So don’t worry, you can’t really damage your progress by working out at the ‘wrong’ time.

    It’s the fact that you’re working out at all that is important.

    MORE: This Pilates workout could improve your sex life

    MORE: How to work out like a professional footballer

    MORE: This simple kettlebell workout works every muscle group in your body


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    You Don’t Look Sick is our weekly series looking at what it’s like to live with an invisible illness.

    Many people living with a condition that you can’t see face judgement when they use things like disabled bathrooms or parking, like Hayley, who we spoke to last week. She wants people to stop tutting at her for using priority seats.

    This week, we’re with Sophie Crowley, 34, from Hertfordshire.

    She has a number of conditions including asthma, eczema, hayfever, costochondritis, depression and anxiety, but the two that have the biggest impact are myalgic encephalomyelitis (M.E.) and vestibular migraines.

    Myalgic encephalomyelitis is also known as chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) a long-term illness which causes extreme tiredness, sleep problems, muscle or joint pain, headaches, problems concentrating, dizziness and generally feeling unwell.

    Vestibular migraines cause repeated vertigo but unlike traditional migraines, it does not always cause a headache.

    Sophie who suffers from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis, at her home
    Caption: Sophie who suffers from myalgic encephalomyelitis (Picture: Joe Newman for Metro.co.uk)

    Before her diagnosis with ME and vestibular migraines, Sophie had a very active lifestyle. She worked as a primary school teacher and enjoyed socialising with friends a few nights a week.

    Her daughter was born in 2017 but she says she and her husband quickly adjusted to sleepless nights, feeding and dirty nappies.

    But in October 2018, with her daughter at nursery, she was picking up lots of bugs and infections, that she often passed onto her mum.

    Sophie’s asthma got worse as she had a series of chest infections. She was admitted to hospital but most of her tests, scans and X-rays came back clear. Doctors couldn’t understand why a previously ‘well person’ was being hit by back to back infections.

    Sophie also found she had no energy – she felt more tired than she did when her daughter was a newborn and just walking 50 metres was difficult. Some days, she couldn’t stand up at all.

    She was going back and forth to her doctor and eventually, she has referred her to a consultant physician and endocrinologist, the clinical lead for chronic fatigue syndrome in the area.

    He diagnosed Sophie with myalgic encephalomyelitis based on the sudden onset and pattern of her symptoms.

    Sophie in hospital wearing a gown and oxygen mask
    Sophie in hospital (Picture: Sophie Crowley)

    Sophie tells Metro.co.uk: ‘I had a massive sense of relief. My anxiety does not cope well with uncertainty.

    ‘As much as I have my anxiety under control these days, it rears its ugly head in times like this. I had spent months with back-to-back infections, with no sense of what was causing these.

    ‘I was being sent from pillar to post, from one consultant to the next, none of whom could explain what was going on.

    ‘It was one person who mentioned the possibility of it being M.E. I looked into it and it suddenly all seemed to make sense.

    ‘The symptoms and history description entirely matched mine.’

    Her diagnosis of vestibular migraines came later the same year.

    She explains: ‘My vestibular migraines were diagnosed by a neurologist who examined me and conducted an MRI scan of my head.

    ‘The diagnosis of vestibular migraines was part relief, part frustration as there isn’t, unfortunately, anything that can be done about them.

    Sophie in her wheelchair holding hands with her daughter
    Sophie with her daughter (Picture: Sophie Crowley)

    ‘Vestibular migraines are treated by beta-blockers which unfortunately can’t be taken for those with asthma.

    ‘So, for me, it’s a case of learning to live with it, just like I’ve had to do for the M.E.’

    Although having a diagnosis was helpful for Sophie, there is no cure or universal treatment option for either condition.

    Now Sophie has had to give up work and struggles to leave the house, which she finds upsetting as she has a young daughter and wants to do activities with her,

    In her blog, Mummying and M.E., she describes living with M.E. as like ‘having the flu constantly, running a marathon daily (with the flu) and then being beaten up, followed by an all-night bender.’

    She says: ‘The important thing I want people to know is that M.E. (or chronic fatigue syndrome) is not just “being tired”. It is so much more than that.

    Sophie in her wheelchair with her daughter
    She says her condition makes it harder to do activities with her daughter (Picture: Sophie Crowley)

    ‘I can only shower twice a week. It requires lots of energy to shower so I can only do it on my good days. I use a shower seat to try to conserve the energy it requires to stand up.

    ‘When going out and about, I use mobility aids depending on how far I have to go. I have a hired electric wheelchair which allows me to leave the house without having to get in the car. I have a manual wheelchair for supermarkets and shopping centres. I have a rollator for short distances, and crutches for very very short distances.

    ‘I make myself leave the house every day, purely to get fresh air and see members of the public.

    ‘If I don’t leave the house, I don’t see anyone. It can get very lonely being with your own thoughts all day every day.

    ‘On my bad days, and bad parts of days, I can’t stand. Noises and light are physically excruciating. All I can manage is lying down and falling asleep.

    ‘It comes on very suddenly, like a switch turning off. When that switch turns off, it’s like my body just shuts down.’

    Sophie says that despite the huge impact the condition has on her life, she has received negative comments because M.E. is still often misunderstood, particularly as there isn’t a clear diagnostic test – doctors just have to rule out other conditions.

    Sophie adds: ‘I’ve had people say, “but you don’t look sick” and “but all the tests came back clear” as if that denies that anything is actually wrong.

    ‘It really annoys me when people say “but you don’t look sick” because it somehow implies that people with M.E. must look a certain way, or even those with any chronic illness must look a certain way or must act in a certain way.

    In terms of test results, there isn’t a biomarker, or set blood test, for M.E. yet. This means that standard blood tests do come back “normal” or “clear” but this must not be an assumption that therefore M.E. is all in the head. M.E. is very much a physical condition but just does not have a set biomarker for yet.

    Sophie in her wheelchair
    Sophie now uses a wheelchair when she needs to (Picture: Sophie Crowley)

    ‘In the past people considered multiple sclerosis to be a case of “hysteria” because they didn’t yet have a biomarker for that. Can you imagine saying that to someone with MS nowadays?

    ‘That’s unfortunately what is going on with those with M.E. Because there isn’t a biomarker, nor is there sufficient research to investigate one, it means attempted treatments are psychologically related, even though research has shown these are ineffective.

    ‘Until the psychological treatments of CBT and GET (graded exercise therapy) are shown to be what they are, i.e. damaging to those with M.E. then the research into the physical side of the illness won’t happen.’

    Sophie says that using a wheelchair when she needs to has made a huge difference to her quality of life but she does, she feels she gets judged because peoples think she looks young and doesn’t obviously look unwell.

    She says: ‘It is wonderful to be able to go out and get fresh air again, an activity I couldn’t do for months. There’s only so many supermarkets and shopping centres one can spend time at, as an alternative to staying at home.

    ‘I do feel very self-conscious being in a wheelchair as I have been told in the past “using a wheelchair will make you more disabled”. Wow. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    ‘My wheelchair(s) give me a greater quality of life that I might not have had otherwise. I love being able to leave the house and take my daughter out to the swings knowing that I can manage it if my energy only needs to be expended on enjoying time with her, rather than having to use energy on walking.

    Sophie who suffers from Myalgic Encephalomyelitis in her wheelchair
    Her wheelchair helps her get out of the house but she says that she feels people judge her for using one because she doesn’t look sick (Picture: Joe Newman for Metro.co.uk)

    ‘What I’m always terrified of though is if I stand up to say put my wheelchair in the car and then walk to my car seat, that people will somehow think I’m faking it.

    ‘Too many stories out there of people being harassed for being able to walk but yet still use a wheelchair scares me. We need more awareness that ambulatory wheelchair users exist.’

    Sophie has taken some time to come to terms with her conditions and how her life has changed but she has a great support network around her.

    ‘I am very lucky to have family support in looking after my daughter on a regular basis, as well as a fantastic nursery my daughter goes to,’ she says.

    ‘My husband is also incredibly supportive, I don’t know what I’d do without him.

    ‘I’ve joined a local church that I attend weekly and that has helped me find the spiritual peace in coming to terms with the illness.

    ‘Writing for me is a very effective form of therapy, hence my blog. I find writing about my thought processes, writing about my experiences of various situations to be incredibly therapeutic.

    ‘I’m also a member of various support groups online who keep me upbeat and help me avoid isolation.’

    Sophie finds that writing about her condition online has helped her to process what has happened and helped her raise awareness of the condition.

    She adds: ‘People need to talk about invisible illnesses. Each and every invisible illness needs to be publicized and be made normal and not something to be ashamed about.

    ‘People need to be honest about how their condition affects them. That’s why I started my blog mummyingandme.com, to share what it’s like living with invisible illnesses, to share the types of challenges we come across, but also to help those who do have invisible illnesses to feel slightly less alone.

    ‘It’s a challenge to achieve that but I do believe we can.’

    How to get involved with You Don't Look Sick

    You Don’t Look Sick is Metro.co.uk’s weekly series that discusses invisible illness and disabilities.

    If you have an invisible illness or disability and fancy taking part, please email youdontlooksick@metro.co.uk.

    You’ll need to be happy to share pictures that show how your condition affects you, and have some time to have some pictures taken.

    MORE: You Don’t Look Sick: ‘People need to stop tutting when I use a priority seat’

    MORE: You Don’t Look Sick: ‘I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I fell down 51 steps in Vegas’

    MORE: You Don’t Look Sick: ‘My arm hurts so much I considered having it amputated’

    MORE: You Don’t Look Sick: ‘Living with an invisible illness destroyed my confidence’


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    Gathering of Nigels (Picture: Viacom International)
    A huge gathering of Nigels is coming soon… (Picture: Viacom International)

    The name Nigel can be traced back to a Gaelic word that means ‘cloud’ or ‘champion’.

    To most of us, however, it equals a nasally-sounding name that we aren’t willing to inflict upon any more innocent babies.

    It’s been the name of political figures including Nigel Farage and more likeable folks like Nigel Thornberry – plus it’s the masculine version of a certain TV cooking goddess’s name – but in 2016 it was recorded that fewer than three babies were given the name.

    And one non-baby Nigel is taking a stand.

    56-year-old Nigel Smith is hosting what he hopes will be the world’s largest gathering of Nigels.

    Taking place at his Bretforton pub on Saturday September 28, ‘Nigel Night’ is a chance for all Nigels to gather before they’re go ‘extinct’.

    Each and every Nige will even score a free drink at the 600-year-old establishment.

    While non-Nigels are certainly welcome, they will need to declare their status by wearing a badge.

    It’s a move he hope will set a Guinness World Record and even spur on a national gathering. Smashing!

    If you’re a Nigel or you happen to know one, get yourself to The Fleece Inn at 7pm on 28 September.

    People aren’t naming their babies Nigel but other names are much more popular.

    In the list of the most popular baby names in 2018, Oliver remained the most popular name for boys in England and Wales for the sixth year in a row, while Olivia is still the most popular name for girls – for the third year in a row.

    MORE: How to become an e-boy or e-girl (blusher and nail polish required)

    MORE: You can preserve the tattoos (and skin) of your loved ones

    MORE: What is a karmic relationship and how do you know if you’re in one?


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    STOCK IMAGE Dogs have a habit of winning hearts, but scientists say they can also help keep them healthy. New research suggests that owning a pet may help maintain cardiovascular health, especially if that pet is a dog. Using data from the Kardiozive Brno 2030 study, the research examined the association of pet ownership - specifically dog ownership - with cardiovascular disease risk factors and cardiovascular health.
    The Doggo Style market is returning to town. (Source: 500px)

    With the recent departure of summer, there’s almost nothing left to smile about. Luckily, canines – our moist-nosed huggers, our fuzz butts, our pooches – are here year-round, you ingrate!

    To celebrate all things canine, the Doggo Style Market is taking place on Sunday 29 September.

    Having kicked off just last year, London’s go-to indoor dog market returns with accessories, themed photo-ops, beer for dogs and treats from Oonalfie, Florence & Ottie, and The Rockster.

    There will even be gourmet burgers and ice-cream for your dog from Hugo & Celine and designer collars to show your dog just how ‘mutts’ you are about them.

    Bring your dogs, of course, but pets of all kind are welcome.

    The theme this time is dogs with jobs (which also happens to be the name of a Metro.co.uk series) so expect lots of very good doggos.

    It will also be a Sunday of style for the humans. The bar will serving up beverages and there will be numerous food stalls, so you aren’t a drooling mess while watching your pets feast.

    Taking place at Tower Bridge Court, the event will run from 12pm-5pm. Tickets are £4 in advance or £5 on the door. Children under 12 get in free.

    The proceeds all go to dog rescue and rehoming charity All Dogs Matter. According to Doggo Style, they were able to raise £2,090 for the charity during their Christmas market last year.

    MORE: You can now enjoy a glass of wine and a cuppa in one

    MORE: What is a VSCO girl and are you one?

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    Chelsea Darczuk thought her boyfriend Jared was about to propose to her on a long weekend away.

    She’d packed her bag before work and headed off to her job as a special education teacher.

    But despite her hunch being right, Jared still managed to completely take her by surprise by staging the proposal in her classroom, with her whole class helping him ask the question.

    Last week, Chelsea, 28, drove to work at EastSide Charter School in Wilmington, Delaware.

    jared proposing to Chelsea in the classroom
    Chelsea was shocked to find Jared in her classroom (Picture: Facebook/EastSide Charter School)

    After starting her normal routine, she got a message from her boss asking for some help with a literacy programme.

    Walking back into her classroom, she found her boyfriend and a few other teachers.

    Behind him, her students held signs that read ‘will you marry me?’

    Jared told her he loved her and wanted to be with each other before he gave her a rose gold ring.

    Of course, she said yes.

    The delighted students cheered for their teacher and shouted ‘kiss, kiss!’

    Chelsea and Jared are now planning their wedding for September next year.

    She told Yahoo Lifestyle: ‘It didn’t click at first because I had mentally prepared myself for the possibility of getting engaged this weekend.’

    At least Chelsea figured it out in a few seconds.

    Earlier this week we told you about the man who secretly proposed to his girlfriend for a whole month without her realising.

    Edi Okoro took the engagement ring everywhere and took as many photos of Cally with the ring as he could without her knowing it was there.

    MORE: You Don’t Look Sick: ‘Having M.E. is like you’ve ran a marathon with the flu and were beaten up afterwards’

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    METROGRAB Students hold \'will you marry me signs?\' when her partner surprises her with a proposal in the classroomMETROGRAB Students hold \'will you marry me signs?\' when her partner surprises her with a proposal in the classroom

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    Text exchange between Tinder matches chatting about charcuterie
    A Tinder man said no to his match because he doesn’t know what charcuterie is (Picture: Twitter/Instagram/sistersome)

    This week on bizarre things that happened on Tinder, we bring you the man who doesn’t know about charcuterie.

    Now we don’t shame people for not knowing different food staples – a meat and cheese board in this case.

    But weirdly, the man told his Tinder match that he wasn’t ‘ready’ for a charcuterie date – too serious apparently.

    His match Danielle Betsy shared their exchange on Twitter after being rejected by the dude.

    Danielle, a 22-year-old from Canada, posted their messages with ‘Jan’ online where she wrote: ‘the boys in Germany are different’.

    Weirdly enough, Jan’s first message to Danielle was ‘what is charcuterie’ which is either a really unusual chat-up line or is in response to it being mentioned on Danielle’s Tinder bio.

    Danielle then replied to his opener with ‘It’s a board full of meat and cheese and grapes that you have with wine’.

    But that’s too much for Jan who replied: ‘Mmh I am sorry. I don’t think I’m ready for that’.

    Which makes us wonder – are cheese boards too serious for a first date?

    Danielle Betsy has shared her brutal dating app rejection online after a man suggested that her choice of charcuterie as date food was 'too serious'.
    Weird reason to unmatch but okay (Picture: Twitter/Instagram/sistersome)

    Plenty of users were tickled on Twitter where the post racked up more than 40,000 likes.

    Since the post went viral, Danielle followed it up with another saying ‘I’m saving charcuterie for marriage’

    Users were in stitches, making jokes and saying: ‘French boys would never’.

    ‘Fine meats and cheese is where I draw the line,’ quipped another while one wrote: ‘I mean, it’s an awfully intimate experience for a first date.’

    We’re not sure what’s so serious about charcuterie – it really is just prepared meats such as bacon, ham, sausages as well as fine cheese and grapes.

    Sounds delightful, if you ask us. Perhaps he was lactose intolerant though.

    A brief history lesson about charcuterie

    Jan might not be ready to face the French delicacy but we love our food staples.

    Here’s how charcuterie came to be.

    Charcute stems from the French noun ‘Charcuter’ which means ‘to butcher’.

    ‘Char’ means flesh and ‘cuite’ is old French for ‘cooked’, according to Nisbets.

    During the fifteenth century, ‘charcutiers’ weren’t allowed to sell uncooked pork due to obvious risks of raw meat. So meat began to to be salted and cured in this specific way on a commercial level.

    By the time of the French revolution, nearly one hundred charcutiers were operating within Paris.

    Initially, the process of curing meat was never designed to enhance its flavour, but was more of a necessity – to preserve the meat edible during the winter months.

    By drying meat and smoking it over a fire, using juniper berries or other herbs and spices to add flavour, it could be stored for longer.

    In Britain at least, as soon as refrigeration became widespread, this practice of curing meat almost became extinct but is now revived.

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    Tinder man says no to date coz he doesn't know what charcuterie isTinder man says no to date coz he doesn't know what charcuterie is

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    Tesco is selling beefeater gin
    It’s purple coloured (Picture: Beefeater)

    If you’re in the market for a new autumn tipple then good news, Tesco is selling a blackberry flavoured Beefeater gin.

    The supermarket is offering the exclusive drink which is fruity-flavoured and purple.

    If a gin and tonic is your go-to drink but you fancy a bit of a change then you’ll enjoy the colour as it stays a light purple when mixed with tonic water.

    According to the booze distiller, the drink tastes of classic gin with hints of juniper and citrus, and has a ‘long, rich finish’.

    Each bottle is 700ml bottles will set you back £18.99.

    Though that is more expensive than a plain bottle of Beefeater gin, which is cheapest at Waitrose where it’s on offer for £14, it has the new blackberry flavouring.

    Good for those who’re missing the fruity summer taste.

    Tesco is also offering other flavours of Beefeater gin such as pink strawberry and blood orange which are cheapest at the supermarket.

    At Tesco, they cost £16.50 but are pricier elsewhere.

    Other flavoured gins usually get their taste by mixing ingredients to the spirits later on in the process.

    But Beefeater’s version is unlike the others as it’s made by distilling the gin base with natural blackberry flavours.

    The Beefeater drink has a 37.5% alcohol by volume (ABV) content. Other gin liqueurs only contain around 20% ABV.

    The drink will only be around for a year and is being exclusively sold at Tesco both online and in stores from 9 September. You can find your nearest store here.

    If you’re in the mood for fruity-flavoured gin then you might want to get your hands on the Flagingo Electric Raspberry gin which is flavoured with blue and Scottish raspberries.

    Zymurgorium, home of the original Parma Violet gin, has launched an electric blue raspberry flavoured shimmery gin which turns pink when you add a mixer to it.

    Chin chin.

    MORE: Attention, cocktail fans: Tesco is selling two-litre boxes of Passion Fruit Martini

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    MORE: Brussels sprouts flavoured gin now exists

    Tesco is selling beefeater ginTesco is selling beefeater gin

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    The new Oxfam superstore in Oxford
    The new Oxfam superstore (Picture: Newspix International)

    We all love a charity shop, crammed full of second-hand clothes, all ready for a new home.

    It is a great way to get designer things at a cheaper price – and help charity too.

    And now, Oxfam is giving you more choice and racks of clothes to comb through with a giant superstore.

    The shop, which opened yesterday in Oxford, is 12 times the size of the average Oxfam shop.

    It’s a first for the charity, but of course, it will sell both Oxfam’s donated items and the ‘Sourced By Oxfam’ range of brand new ethically sourced gifts and homewares, like other smaller shops.

    There’s even a cafe because you’ll need a rest after all that searching.

    The Oxfam superstore in Oxford
    Perfect for Second Hand September (Picture: Newspix International)

    Items already in store on opening day included a pair of Gucci shoes worth £500, on sale for £19.99, a £180 Moschino belt for £35 and a Victoria Beckham-branded black and white shirt for just £14.99.

    It’s perfect for those following Second Hand September – an initiative by the charity to encourage people to buy pre-loved clothes instead of new.

    The space will also be used as a community hub, with an area for meetings, workshops, activities and talks.

    The store will create 11 new jobs and numerous volunteering opportunities. It will also support Oxfam’s Future Skills project, a volunteering, training and mentoring project for women in the UK facing barriers to building a better life.

    Danny Sriskandarajah, chief executive of Oxfam GB said: ‘Oxfam’s first ever superstore is an exciting new venture for us.

    ‘The huge treasure trove of items on offer make it a destination shopping experience but it is so much more than a shop. It will be a social hub at the heart of the community which we hope will give people a greater sense of the incredible difference they can make by shopping, donating or volunteering at Oxfam.’

    The superstore will be open for trading four days a week (Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays) but will accept donations seven days a week.

    Free parking is available and there’s even a drive-through donation point so you can drop off anything you don’t need easily.

    MORE: Tesco is selling blackberry flavoured Beefeater gin and it’s purple

    MORE: Woman rejected by Tinder date who isn’t ‘ready for charcuterie date’

    Oxfam Opens SuperstoreOxfam Opens Superstore

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    The Aldi Le Creuset dupe cookware
    The Aldi casserole dish (Picture: Aldi)

    Another week, another Aldi bargain.

    This time its cookware. And these coloured cast-iron dishes remind us a lot of top brand Le Creuset.

    Le Creuset pots are beautiful but pretty pricey. It costs £185 for a 20cm cast iron round casserole dish.

    So you might be pleased to hear that Aldi’s range includes one the same size in a similar design for just £19.99.

    Other items include a pack of two mini casserole stoneware dishes for £3.49 and a shallow casserole dish for £24.99.

    The supermarket also has a cast-iron roaster for £19.99, a larger casserole dish with a lid for £24.99 and packs of ramekins for £3.49.

    Or if casseroles aren’t your thing, there’s a cast-iron skillet, griddle pan, saucepan or 30cm tray for £14.99 each, compared to items from £125 on Le Creuset.

    Everything in the range comes in red, blue and grey.

    Aldi cookware dupes Provider: Aldi
    The Aldi range starts at £3.49 (Picture: Aldi)

    You can pre-order it online from today but it doesn’t hit stores until next Sunday, 15 September.

    And if you’re lucky, you might still find an Aldi dupe from last week down the middle aisle.

    They also launched stand mixers that look a lot like the KitchenAid ones, famously featured on Bake Off.

    The Aldi version, which comes in red or white, costs just £49.99.

    It comes with a 4l capacity stainless steel bowl, a whisk, dough hook and beater.

    It also comes with a three-year guarantee so you can get a replacement if anything goes wrong.

    It was only available while stocks last but it’s still available to order online and you might be lucky enough to find one in store.

    MORE: Oxfam opens charity shop superstore filled with designer brands including Moschino, Gucci and Victoria Beckham

    MORE: Tesco is selling blackberry flavoured Beefeater gin and it’s purple

    Aldi cookware dupesAldi cookware dupes

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    Woman showing middle finger at wedding
    A mood? (Picture: Imgur)

    Brides and mother-in-law don’t always get along.

    We’ve even seen a few times the MIL has ended up wearing a white dress in a move that’s more aggressive than passive. Not all brides mind too much though.

    But one mother of the groom just couldn’t hold her feelings about the woman her son had married.

    So, she decided to give her the middle finger. During the photos. As you do.

    An image of all the wedding guests was sharedon Imgur.

    The woman, thought to be the mother of the groom, can be seen standing innocently among the rest of the guests.

    At first glance, you’ll be forgiven for thinking it’s just a normal family photo taken on a special day.

    But look closely and it’s unmistakable – the woman is seen flipping off the bride who is a mere few steps away from her.

    Of course, the couple are anonymous and we’re not sure where the image is from but naturally, it has gone viral.

    What makes it so much better is how low-key the rude gesture is.

    Guest shows bride the middle finger and gets caught on camera
    Photos last forever, you know (Picture: Imgur)

    Surrounding guests are seen beaming at the camera but obviously the MIL has other ideas.

    Wearing a blue top, which might have been the colour scheme of the wedding as other guests are matching, the MIL also has a smile on her face.

    And clearly it’s aimed at the bride, who is two people away from her, and the groom seems to be missing from the picture.

    Over on Imgur, the viral image has been viewed almost 6,000 times.

    We’re not sure how she’s going to explain that one, to be honest. Perhaps a finger cramp she was stretching out?

    But at least she’s not wearing a whole wedding dress? Other pissed of mothers-in-law have done the bold move.

    If you’re someone who enjoys reading about passive-aggressive relationships then you’ll love this list of things mothers-in-law have done to their daughter-in-law. Strap in, you’re in for a wild ride.

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    Guest shows bride the middle finger and gets caught on cameraGuest shows bride the middle finger and gets caught on camera

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    Women posing with their colostomy bags for a charity calendar
    Some of the images from the colostomy girls calendar (Picture: Mercury Press)

    You might have heard of The Calendar Girls but 2020 is all about the colostomy girls.

    A group of 14 women aged 20 to 53 from across the UK stripped down to their underwear and showed their ostomy bags for a new calendar to raise awareness for a charity that helps people with stomas.

    The idea is a twist on the story of the Calendar Girls from a Woman’s Institue group in Yorkshire, who posed naked to raise money for Cancer. The story later went on to be made into a film and even a musical.

    Charity founder Lauren Henderson, 31, from Worcestershire, who set up the organisation after having a stoma herself, said: “We wanted to do something completely different to everyone else and give people the chance to look and feel glamorous with their colostomy bags.

    ‘At first, I was nervous because I didn’t think people were going to actually do it.

    ‘I had my stoma at 25 and featured in the first calendar with it – it just shows that it doesn’t make a difference to a person.

    Women posing with their colostomy bags for a charity calendar
    All 14 women in the calendar (Picture: Lisa Jones/Mercury Press)

    ‘It’s now my favourite event of the year – none of the people involved are scared to get their bag out, just like any other woman in that position – the bag wasn’t the issue at all!”

    It’s not the first time they’ve created a charity calendar – the first happened in 2016 – but for the first time, they decided to shoot the images outside

    This is the fifth time Purple Wings has created the calendar after their first effort in 2016 went viral online.

    Women posing with their colostomy bags for a charity calendar
    The women are raising money for Purple Wings (Picture: Lisa Jones/Mercury Press)

    The woman stood by the lakeside behind a social club in Redditch, Worcs, and posed for each month of the year.

    Claire, 53, who stars as May, was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and colitis in 1988, and after unsuccessful treatments by 1997 she had a panproctocolectomy where her total colon was removed.

    She said her two daughters and husband have been her rock throughout and encouraged her to join the group of beautiful, brave and truly inspirational ladies to raise awareness.

    Women posing with their colostomy bags for a charity calendar
    Each woman has a colostomy  (Picture: Lisa Jones/Mercury Press)

    Julie, from the month of April, had recently had her stoma made permanent following a previous bowel perforation, two tumours and colitis.

    She said: ‘I questioned everything, then Purple Wings entered my life via a new friend, and slowly I began to start a newfound journey.

    ‘The calendar shoot made me come away emotionally and mentally a new person, with the added bonus of some amazing new-found friends and best of all my daughter was there to share this experience with me.’

    Women posing with their colostomy bags for a charity calendar
    The calendar will be on sale later this month (Picture: Lisa Jones/Mercury Press)

    Annie, 31, who features on the front of the calendar, added: ‘I was six weeks post-op when I did the calendar shoot, it was worth the pain for such a good cause and the opportunity to meet some truly fabulous fierce queens!

    ‘It was just what I needed to make me feel sexy again.’

    Lauren added: ‘The best reaction we’ve got from the calendar was from a young guy who didn’t even notice the bags on the ladies and said ‘is that it?’ – that’s the whole point of the calendar.

    ‘We want to educate those without stomas with the calendar and gives those with one a confidence boost, especially the models.’

    The 2020 calendar will be on sale soon for £9.99.

    MORE: Aldi is sellling Le Creuset cookware dupes with prices starting at £3.49

    MORE: Oxfam opens charity shop superstore filled with designer brands including Moschino, Gucci and Victoria Beckham

    Colostomy calendarColostomy calendar

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    Colorful bags made from materials from old bouncy castle and inflatables
    A mother has saved 100 tonnes of plastic from heading to the landfill (Picture: Solent News)

    A mum-of-two has singled-handedly saved 100 tonnes of plastic from heading to landfill – by making trendy handbags.

    Georgia Wyatt-Lovell has turned inflatables, bouncy castles and deck-chair covers from around the world into accessories.

    The 38-year-old from the Isle of Wight said David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II drew her attention to plastic pollution, particularly in the ocean.

    Her work was so inspired that charity National Trust and Thomas Cook are now collaborating with Georgia to set up ‘Inflatables Amnesty’ collection points in the UK and around the world.

    That means soon you could be picking up a stylish bag made by Georgia who’s given old plastic a new life.

    When she first began, Georgia used discarded deck chair covers from the beach but soon holidaymakers sent her other bits.

    People asked Georgia to make memorabilia out of pool inflatables or water-wings, all of which she created out of her dining room.

    Fans can follow the journey of their donation, from an unboxing video posted on Instagram to the final product. And many buy back their transformed beach toys.

     One of the bags made from recycled plastic
    Cute and ethical (Picture: Solent News)

    The designer explained: ‘There are certain bespoke orders that stick in my head. The hen party that sent in their blow-up man. He was really weird looking.

    ‘They wanted him made into a bag to give to the bride on her wedding day. His head was made into a rucksack.

    ‘We see what we get and where it’s damaged, and that dictates the final bag’s shape and style. Flamingos are the most popular.’

    Now the business employs six people and operates from a shop in Ryde, Isle of Wight but will soon be moving to its first warehouse.

    Each recycled bag starts at £5 for a small pocket bag, but complicated bags, which take days to make, can reach up to £145.

    Some of the final products include tote bags, rucksacks, and washbags.

    Bouncy castle materials are ideal to use as they can’t be recycled because of their mixed fibres, and inflatables have to be turned into pellets before they can be recycled.

    So Georgia pairs the two together, using the strong bouncy castle fabric as the base of the bag, decorated with less durable fabric from inflatables.

    ‘For me, it just seemed like the obvious thing to do,’ added Georgia.

    ‘Don’t throw something away if you can re-use it. I want people to feel like they can get involved, and that they can afford it.

    ‘I’ve always wanted people to go “that’s a really nice bag” and then look at the tag, and think “oh cool it used to be something else”.’

    There are inflatable amnesty drop off points around the UK, including Studland Bay, where the finished products are returned to the location they were discarded to be sold in the National Trust shop.

    Some are as far-flung as Brisbane, Australia, Majorca, Spain, and Seattle, US.

    Thomas Cook is also trialling the drop off points in Greece. You can find more information on the Inflatable Amnesty website.

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    A mother has saved 100 tonnes of plastic from heading to the landfill - by turning inflatables into stylish handbags.A mother has saved 100 tonnes of plastic from heading to the landfill - by turning inflatables into stylish handbags.

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    Before and after she used a hirclip to fix her dress
    Before and after (Picture: Sharna Horwood/Caters News)

    You’ve found the perfect dress – it’s slinky, made of silk and has classic spaghetti straps.

    But quickly you realise the straps just won’t stay up and you relegate it to the back of the wardrobe.

    Well do not fear, a nurse has found the perfect solution to keep straps in place – and it costs just £2.

    Sharna Horwood bought her dress online but said she was left severely disappointed when it arrived because it just did not seem to fit right on her body.

    The 25-year-old explained that no matter what she did, the frock’s ‘annoying’ silky spaghetti straps kept falling down around her shoulders – which meant she constantly needed to pull them up.

    She was prepared to try and alter it herself or spend some money getting it done professionally – but luckily she had a genius idea that saved the $90AUD [£50] ‘Born To Be Chic’ dress.

    She went to her local Kmart department store and discovered a set of three pretty hairclips for just $5AUD [£2.80] and decided to use them on her new dress.

    Sharna Horwood, 25, from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
    Sharna Horwood, 25, from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia (Picture: Sharna Horwood/Caters News)

    She clipped the straps together at the back to make them much more secure.

    And incredibly, the genius hack worked beautifully by holding the straps together at the back – while also looking seamlessly stylish at the same time.

    Sharna said: ‘I bought the dress online, and I really loved it. But when it arrived, it just didn’t fit right.

    ‘I planned to wear it to an upcoming event with a strapless bra. But the problem was that the spaghetti straps on the dress kept falling down.

    ‘No matter what I did, I’d constantly need to pull them back up onto my shoulders. It was frustrating, so I knew I had to do something if I wanted to keep the dress.

    ‘I originally had a hook and eye in the back, but it didn’t look nice. So, I decided to go to my local Kmart department store and see if I could find something to help.

    ‘I came across these nice hairclips and it just clicked. They were only $5 for three, so I bought them and took them home.

    ‘They worked perfectly, and it looked like it was just meant to be a part of the dress. The colour suited and blended in well.

    ‘I was so happy to be able to fix my dress at such a bargain.’

    She posted the hack on Facebook and it soon went viral.

    She said: ‘The response I’ve received online from this has been pretty overwhelming, but it’s so lovely to get all these lovely messages from people praising my idea.

    ‘I’d definitely do it again in the future. It just sits so much nicer and is much more comfortable.

    ‘The hairclip hack totally saved my dress, so I couldn’t be happier.’

    Of course we don’t have any branches of KMart in the UK, you can find similar hair slides here too.

    Boots sell a pack of two for £4, for example.

    MORE: Mum saves over 100 tonnes of plastic from landfill by turning bouncy castles and inflatables into handbags

    MORE: 14 women strip down to their underwear and show their stoma bags with pride for new charity calendar

    From droopy to perfect fit dressFrom droopy to perfect fit dress

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    A cheese conveyor belt is coming to London Picture: METROGRAB
    Pickj & Cheese is now open (Picture: Pick & Cheese)

    Earlier this year, we brought you the news that a cheese conveyor belt was coming to London – and now it’s finally open.

    Pick & Cheese features 25 different cheeses that literally come to you.

    So forget that overflowing cheese board, this place lets you sit in one spot as the cheese in front of you keeps changing, letting you pick your favourite.

    And of course, if you really like a particular one, you just wait for it to come around again.

    It’s sushi but with chunks of creamy cheesy goodness instead.

    The whole belt measures 40-metres and there are 38 seats around the whole thing.

    It opened at the new KERB street food market in Seven Dials this week.


    Honestly, everything on their Instagram will make any cheese-lover drool.

    It’s been created by the people behind The Cheese Truck in 2014 and Camden’s Cheese Bar in 2017, so these guys know a thing or two about cheese.

    Each of the 25 cheeses comes with a different condiment – combinations

    Combinations include coolea with hazelnut brittle and fresh ricotta with sherry-infused cherries.

    Each cheese is marked with a price and you pay for everything from the belt at the end.

    Dessert is cheesy-themed too – there’s a flavoured soft-serve ice cream, using Baron Bigod brie and Beauvale Blue.

    The restaurant is one of 26 traders at the new KERB Seven Dials Market, which is inside a former banana storage building.

    We can’t wait to go and try every single one.

    MORE: Woman’s £3 hairclip hack transforms her dress from ‘droopy’ to a perfect fit

    MORE: Mum saves over 100 tonnes of plastic from landfill by turning bouncy castles and inflatables into handbags


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    The big toe heel
    The big toe heel is here (Picture: Getty)

    Ever purchased a gorgeous pair of new shoes, only to fret that your favourite toe won’t get the sunlight, oxygen and public admiration it needs?

    Well look no further than the latest footwear trend: big-toe heels.

    French label Y/Project kicked off the aesthetic with the inclusion of the shoe in their Spring Summer 2018 collection. As you might have worked out, it’s an enclosed shoe with the big toe left bare.

    It screams to the world that all the other piggies have gone to market, and this big piggy stayed right at home.

    Would you like a pair to call your own? That’ll be £790.

    The price is nothing considering it’s an eternal conversation starter/closer, and an excuse for the senior members of your family to consistently enquire about whether ‘it gets cold’ or you got it for ‘half price’.

    The Parisian brand didn’t stop there. Following the shoe being a near sell-out, they’ve also designed a pointed floral variation of the big-toe heel which retails for £720.

    PARIS, FRANCE - SEPTEMBER 27: A model, shoes detail, walks the runway during the Y/Project show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2019 on September 27, 2018 in Paris, France. (Photo by Peter White/Getty Images)
    Y/Project has launched the big toe heel (Picture: Getty)

    It’s a style they refer to as ‘modern and edgy’, ‘equal parts feminine cool and fashion-conscious’ and perfectly paired with ‘bleached denim or with a high hemline’.

    The pointed mules might go with your favourite pair of jeans, but you know what comes with them? Blisters.

    Shoppers have drawn parallels between Y/Project’s big toe heels and Céline’s Pirate Mule from 2017, a design that boasts the inverse style, concealing the big toe and revealing the four others to wriggle free.

    big toe shoe trend
    Céline’s Pirate Mule from 2017 (Picture: Celine)

    Call this toe-isolating trend heinous, call it a scourge on society, but please, darling, call it fashion.

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    big toe compbig toe comp

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    Man paying on date.
    Check please (Picture: Getty)

    Women are finding it harder to find suitable partners to marry and a lot of it is to do with men being broke.

    That’s not us hypothesising from anecdotal experience, the finding is from a study looking into mismatches in the marriage market.

    According to a paper published in the Journal of Family and Marriage, marriage rates are going down in America because of a lack of ‘economically attractive’ male spouses.

    Now that’s not to suppose that all women are just looking for men who make big bucks, it’s more about finding a partner with some stability.

    ‘Most American women hope to marry, but current shortages of marriageable men — men with a stable job and a good income — make this increasingly difficult,’ says Daniel Lichter, lead author in a press release.

    Not only are women at a disadvantage when it comes to finding well-off partners, but some groups also fare worse than others.

    Racial and ethnic minorities, especially Black women, face serious shortages of potential marital partners.

    Unmarried women of low socioeconomic status and high socioeconomic status, both at the national and sub-national levels, also face a man drought.

    Perhaps that’s why more women are marrying ‘below’ their own wealth and status.

    Researchers used profiles of real husbands logged in American Community Survey data to create fake profiles of potential husbands.

    When they released these profiles to single women, the fake profiles (based on already married men) fared better.

    The made-up husbands, based on data logged from 2008 to 2012 and 2013 to 2017, made 58% more money than the current lineup of eligible bachelors.

    They also were 30% more likely to be employed and 19% more likely to have a college degree (you can see why they were snapped up).

    The study concludes: ‘This study reveals large deficits in the supply of potential male spouses.

    ‘Many young men today have little to bring to the marriage bargain, especially as young women’s educational levels on average now exceed their male suitors.’

    And yeah in an ideal utopia, money shouldn’t matter, but love is also a ‘fundamentally economic transaction,’ adds Daniel.

    So the options are either to remain unmarried or take someone who doesn’t meet all your standards as your husband.

    Tough choice.

    MORE: Unsatisfied by conventional dating, this woman is marrying a zombie doll

    MORE: Marrying multiple times is good for women’s health but bad for men, suggests study

    MORE: What heartbreak taught me about love

    Check Please.Check Please.

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    jaffa tel aviv_1-1fe1

    Holidays aren’t just about lazing about on the beach anymore.

    The world of travel is opening up more and more doors to the intrepid adventurer these days, and it’s easier than ever to fit more into your time away. Whether it’s day excursions to historic sites led by experts in the field, or hands-on craft workshops hosted by local artisans, adding a little enlightenment to your vacation has never been more accessible.

    And if you’re keen to go even further and travel to more than one country during your holiday, that’s becoming more straightforward too. Take the Three Continents itinerary from Celestyal Cruises. This seven-day trip takes you on a tour of the ancient world, enabling you to step back in time and fully immerse yourself in the different cultures and histories of four enthralling destinations: Egypt, Israel, Turkey and Greece. It’s the perfect adventure whether you’re looking for winter sun over the Christmas period or a fun-filled summer holiday.

    All this without the added hassle of arranging transfers and accommodation makes this a pretty sweet deal – but that’s not all. Here, we show you exactly what to expect on what is, quite possibly, the coolest holiday itinerary ever.


    The adventure begins in Athens, birthplace of theatre, culture and democracy.

    There’s flexibility to spend the whole day here before you set off on your voyage, and there are incredible things to see and do within easy reach of the port. For example, just a 15-minute train journey away is the Acropolis, locally known as the Sacred Rock. 

    Sitting above the city since the 5th century BC, this iconic site was once a buzzing centre where market traders haggled in the shadows of magnificent statues and temples. Throughout its diverse history, many of its gems have fallen to decay or now live in museums around the world, but there are still many exciting things to discover. 

    The Parthenon, the once grand temple dedicated to the goddess Athena, patron deity of Athens, is perhaps the most famous of the sites. But make sure you get a look at the fascinating Tower of the Winds too: a marble structure that is considered to be the oldest meteorological tower in the world, with a weather vane and a sundial to help keep track of the seasons – a real feat of engineering for the time. 

    A full day of exploring will work up an appetite, and you’ll be spoilt for choice in Athens for culinary treats. Spinach pies and tomato balls are great options for snacking on the go, while pastitsio – best described as a mix of moussaka and lasagne – will make a filling feast.

    Alexandria and Port Said

    The Sphinx and the Great Pyramids of Giza

    After a day at sea, you’ll arrive in Alexandria, Egypt’s second city. This urban port is now a cosmopolitan wonderland, where you’ll find world-class restaurants and a mixture of bustling markets and high-end retailers. But there are still traces of the ancient capital to explore.

    Once home to the Great Library and the Lighthouse of Alexandria, one of the Seven Wonders of the World, the city has been the epitome of extravagance and splendour since it was founded by Alexander the Great in the 4th century BC, and there are plenty of museums and tours you can do to learn all about its own past and that of wider Egypt.

    In fact, while you’re in town, join an excursion to nearby Cairo, just 2 hours away, and come face-to-face with the Great Pyramids of Giza – the only surviving wonder of the Seven Wonders of the World. Built as a tomb for Pharaoh Khufu over 4,000 years ago, the pyramids are still standing strong, and you can wander the corridors inside and explore these architectural wonders firsthand.

    Alexandria’s also near Port Said, home of the Suez Canal. Bask in the sun and enjoy views across the glittering Mediterranean while taking in the glory of this feat of human engineering.


    Jerusalem panoramic roof view to christians, jewish and muslims sacred places

    Heading east along the coast, you’ll arrive in Ashdod, Israel for day four of your cruise.

    Today, this city is the perfect base for visiting Jerusalem, where you can dip beneath the pavement and explore Hezekiah’s Tunnels, visit the iconic Dome of the Rock and the Wailing Wall, or climb Mount Zion and enjoy the panoramic views of this city steeped in history. 

    Whether you’re au fait with religious history or not, you’ll be overcome by the incredible energy of this city and its inhabitants.

    Back in Ashdod, meanwhile, there’s plenty of shopping and eating to do. Or you can sign up for an excursion with Celestyal; explore Jaffa and Tel Aviv on a four-and-a-half-hour tour and enjoy a spot of lunch en route. 


    Limassol, Cyprus-dfc1

    Up into the heart of the Mediterranean sits the wonderfully sunny island of Cyprus and the town of Limassol.

    This island may be small but its history is great, with everyone from the Mycenaeans and Romans to the Ottomans leaving their mark here – and Limassol is one of the best spots on the island to get a flavour for every aspect of this diverse history.

    Perhaps the most famous site here is Limassol castle, a Medieval port build under the Ottoman Empire. Today, it houses a museum which boasts an amazing collection of pottery and tombstones from the period; a great mix of art and history for the culture fanatic.

    Limassol is also a short drive away from Aphrodite’s Rock, where it is believed the daughter of the sky first sprung from the sea. Other than being a great spot for holiday snaps, this stretch of coast is defined by pearl-white sands and crystal clear waters – perfect for catching those rays.


    Rhodes 117-5992

    Heading back towards Greece and the Aegean, you’ll arrive in Rhodes on your penultimate day of the cruise, famous for the Colossus of Rhodes, another of the Seven Wonders of the World which depicted the Greek sun god, Helios, deity of the island.

    While this grand statue is long gone, the island still holds plenty of allure. Rhodes Town and its Old Harbour for example, are an enchanting maze of winding cobbled streets, Byzantine architecture and Italian-style townhouses. Simply walking around this UNESCO World Heritage site is a pleasure, but if you want more focus to your day here, stop off at the Palace of the Grand Master of the Knights of Rhodes to learn about the Jerusalem Knights of the Hospitaller who once ruled the island.


    Library Of Celsus at Ephesus

    Your final day of exploration brings you to beautiful Kusadasi on Turkey’s Aegean coast, where you’ll have your final taste of the ancient world before heading back to Athens.

    This beach town offers something for everyone. If you’re feeling in need of a rest after your week of cultural adventure, you can simply plonk on the beach and let the world pass you by. However, if you did that, you’d miss out on one of the ancient world’s most famous archaeological sites.

    Kusadasi is home to Ephesus, an ancient Greek and Roman city which you can explore the ruins of in the Turkish sunshine. Stroll in the footsteps of Greeks, Ionians and Romans as you take in the grand Library of Celsus, or the theatre where 25,000 citizens would gather to watch dramas and comedies well after the sun had set.

    Ephesus is best known, however, for the Temple of Artemis, another of the Seven Wonders of the World. Explore the foundations of this once exquisite holy site that was rebuilt time and again over the centuries to bring prosperity to the people of Ephesus.

    Discover more with Celestyal Cruises


    Step into the ancient world with Celestyal Cruises Three Continents Cruise, sailing 2020 and 2021.

    Do in seven days what could take four weeks without the hassle of booking transfers and different accommodation for every country you visit. Plus, enjoy all-inclusive food and drink and three free expert-guided tours: Classic Cairo (Egypt), Medieval Tour (Rhodes) and Ancient Ephesus (Turkey).

    Want added fun during your time away? Opt for Celestyal Cruises Idyllic Aegean seven-night cruise, where you can party in Mykonos and sunbathe with the stars in gorgeous Santorini. Or, for a dreamy long weekend in the sun – regardless of the time of year – give the three and four-night Iconic Cruise a try and hop around the beautiful Greek islands. You won’t be disappointed.

    For more information, visit celestyalcruises.uk

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    Cara and Gordon with Shaun and Benjamin and the scan for their twins
    Cara and Gordon have been together for three years (Picture: PA Real Life)

    Meeting your partner’s parents for the first time is always a bit nerve-wracking.

    But one woman was so worried, she didn’t introduce them until she was in labour with her boyfriend’s baby – because she was worried about what they would think about their 30-year age gap.

    Cara Foxall, 25, and her partner Gordon Robertston, 55, had been together for over a year when she eventually introduced him to her parents in the delivery suite.

    The mum-of-two, who is now expecting twins with Gordon, met her partner at work and they never thought they would fall in love but their feelings soon deepened, and they have been a couple for over two years – now living together in Dundee, Scotland.

    Speaking out in favour of age gap relationships, following her own positive experience, she said: ‘We have had the odd person thinking Gordon is my dad, not my boyfriend, but other than that, we haven’t had much negativity – not to our faces at least.

    ‘He worries more than I do. When we’re out, he’ll say, “I bet people are thinking, “Oh isn’t she nice, taking her granddad out.’’”

    ‘But I don’t care what other people think. We’ve clicked because of our personalities, not our ages. We’re Cara and Gordon – age doesn’t come into it.

    ‘You can’t help when you were born, and you can’t help who you fall for.’

    Cara and Gordon with Shaun and Benjamin (PA Real Life/Collect)
    Cara introduced Gordon to her parents with Benjamin was born (Picture: PA Real Life/Collect)

    Before meeting Gordon, Cara, who has another son, Shaun, four, from a previous relationship, dated men either her own age, or slightly older.

    When she first met Gordon through work around three years ago, romance was the furthest thing from her mind.

    ‘I didn’t actually realise he was quite that much older than me. I thought he was in his mid-forties,’ she explained.

    ‘He dresses quite young – it’s not like he was in a grandad cardigan and slippers – plus he’s young at heart, always telling jokes and not taking himself too seriously.’

    They were just friends for the first six months but soon found they were flirting with each other.

    Cara continued: ‘We would talk all the time, both in and outside of work. Gradually, I started to wonder if he was flirting, or just being friendly.

    ‘Then, someone else at work told me he liked me.

    ‘I realised I’d developed feelings for him too. He’s got a great sense of humour, which is really important to me. You’ve got to have a laugh.’

    Soon they were officially an item but initially kept their relationship quiet.

    She added: ‘Gordon was fantastic with Shaun, and my boy absolutely loves him, but I wasn’t sure what other people would think.

    ‘I didn’t even tell Shaun Gordon’s name at first, as I was worried he’d tell the rest of the family about him. He would call him ‘Man’ instead.

    Cara and Gordon with Shaun and Benjamin (PA Real Life/Collect)
    Cara and Gordon with Shaun and Benjamin (Picture: PA Real Life/Collect)

    ‘My parents are in their late 60s so they are older than Gordon, but he’s still closer to their age than he is to mine, so of course I was wary of their reaction.’

    When she fell pregnant with Benjamin in 2017, Cara realised she had no choice but to tell her parents, with Gordon and her parents finally meeting for the first time when she went into labour in March 2018.

    ‘Because everyone was so focused on me and making sure I was okay, that helped break the ice a little,’ she said.

    ‘People are always a bit shy on first meetings, and because Gordon is 30 years older than me, I think my parents weren’t quite sure what to make of it all initially.

    ‘But, he’s still here, we’re still happy and now they get along just fine.’

    Despite her loved ones being supportive and her friends completely approving of Gordon, Cara is all too aware of the taboo surrounding age gap romances.

    Still, she insists that having a partner 30 years her senior has worked in her favour, as he is much more settled than men her own age.

    She said: ‘I’m only 25, so most blokes my age want to go out partying and drinking all the time. But I’m not interested in that – and neither is Gordon. He’s already done it all. Now he wants to be settled with our family.

    “I always say that we almost meet in the middle, maturity-wise, as men tend to mature slower than women.

    ‘The only place I really notice our age difference is in the things we like, such as films and music. He listens to songs that came out before I was even born – but that can be a good thing too, as he’s full of stories from years and years ago, of things I’d have had no idea about.’

    Cara's baby scan (PA Real Life/Collect)

    She also knows that some people judge their decision to have more children when Gordon is slightly older but Cara defends their choice.

    Cara who will welcome their twins in January 2020: ‘When it comes to age gap relationships, people do tend to make the same criticisms – one being that the kids may not have as much time with Gordon as they would with a younger dad.

    ‘But the thing is, anything can happen at any time. You can live to 90, or die at 30. We don’t know what’s around the corner.

    ‘Of course, there are times when I think about the twins starting school and how he will be 60 by then, but you have to take each day as it comes.

    ‘Gordon and I have a great relationship. I could be with someone my own age who treated me horribly. Would that somehow be more acceptable to people?

    ‘To all those with a negative opinion, I would say if it has nothing to do with you, there’s no reason for you to be judgemental.’

    MORE: Fashion’s latest abomination is here: big-toe heels

    MORE: Aldi is selling Le Creuset cookware dupes with prices starting at £3.49

    Mum, 25, expecting twins with a partner 30 years older than her admits she was so worried about reactions to her age-gap romance that she only introduced her parents to her lover when she was in labour with their first sonMum, 25, expecting twins with a partner 30 years older than her admits she was so worried about reactions to her age-gap romance that she only introduced her parents to her lover when she was in labour with their first son

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