Channel: Lifestyle – Metro
Browsing All 44194 Browse Latest View Live
Mark channel Not-Safe-For-Work? cancel confirm NSFW Votes: (0 votes)
Are you the publisher? Claim or contact us about this channel.

Once you’ve nailed your pumpkin bum, it’s time to try the glitter bat butt

(Picture: Instagram/gogetglitter)

Oh, so you weren’t satisfied by the glitter pumpkin butt Halloween trend?

You want more ways to decorate your butt cheeks?

Well, you’re in luck, because the people behind the pumpkin bum look have just created another sparkle-centric idea for your Halloween needs.

Behold the glitter bat butt.

The look is pretty self-explanatory, but in case you remain puzzled, here’s what we’re on about.

For Halloween, people are being encouraged to paint a glittery bat across their butt, using their bum crack as a centre point.

Instagram Photo

If you fancy making the look even spookier, you can add more sparkling bats down your legs or up your back.

As with pumpkin bums, we wouldn’t recommend wearing a glitter bat butt out of the house on Halloween, as that’s a surefire way to be very chilly.

You can, however, recreate the look in a more October-appropriate way by adding a glitter bat to a plain bodycon dress worn over tights, or even stick one on the back of your coat. Easy.

We’d recommend that you don’t put glitter on any item of clothing you plan to wear again, mind you. We all know that glitter can never be removed and will haunt your home and wardrobe long after Halloween season has passed.

If you’re keen for more glittery Halloween inspiration (really? Pumpkins and bats weren’t enough?), Go Get Glitter has also shown off glitter spider butt…

Instagram Photo

…A glitter skeleton ribcage…

Instagram Photo

…and a human pumpkin look.

Instagram Photo

Basically, just chuck on some glitter and you’ll nail the spooky season. Easy.

MORE: Looking for Halloween makeup? Pinterest reveals the most popular looks of this year

MORE: People are grossed out by this Rapunzel hair manicure

MORE: Flasher Halloween costumes accused of making light of sexual assault

Sainsbury’s is testing out talking tables to combat loneliness

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 11: (EDITORS NOTE: IMAGE STRICTLY EMBARGOED FROM ALL USAGE UNTIL 00:01 BST FRIDAY 12 OCTOBER 2018.) A member of the public sits at one of the designated Talking Tables at Sainsbury's Fulham Wharf on October 11, 2018 in London, England. The new scheme being trialed in locations across the country is designed to encourage community connections following the release of the retailer's Living Well Index, a barometer of the nation's mood and what impacts our wellbeing. (Photo by Nicky J Sims/Getty Images for Sainsbury's)
(Picture: Nicky J Sims/Getty Images for Sainsbury’s)

Could having a chat with a stranger be a solution for loneliness?

That’s what Sainsbury’s is hoping to find out with its trial of the Talking Tables scheme.

Talking Tables is a plan created in association with the Chatty Cafe Scheme, which asks stores and cafes to set up dedicated tables where people can have a chat.

Sainsbury’s will test the scheme out in a number of different ways, including tables with signs encouraging customers to sit down for a talk with a stranger, getting workers to act as chatting ‘hosts’, and charity-led sessions.

The store is following in the footsteps of Costa, who launched trials of ‘chatter and natter’ tables in more than 300 branches back in August.

Sainsbury’s will set up their talking tables in 20 stores from October to December, and will also be testing out the scheme internally by putting talking tables in depots and store support centres.

The Sainsbury's branches taking part:

  • Barnstaple
  • Bishop Auckland
  • Canley
  • Cwmbran
  • Dorridge
  • Falmouth
  • Hull
  • Longbridge
  • Monks Cross
  • Newport
  • Newquay
  • Northfield
  • Penzance
  • Pontllanfraith
  • Redditch
  • Scarborough
  • Sedgefield
  • Swansea
  • Tewkesbury Road
  • Truro

The initiative has been launched after Sainsbury’s conducted research which found that one in ten people feel lonely all or most of the time, and following Theresa May’s announcement of plans to battle loneliness.

The new strategy will bring together health services, charities, businesses, and community groups to encourage lonely people to take part in activities and talk to new people.

Sainsbury’s is one of the businesses to sign up to the government pledge to tackle loneliness in the workplace.

The Prime Minister said: ‘I was pleased to be able to support the Loneliness Commission set up in Jo’s name and I am determined to do everything possible to take forward its recommendations.

‘This strategy is only the beginning of delivering a long and far reaching social change in our country – but it is a vital first step in a national mission to end loneliness in our lifetimes.’

MORE: Loneliness is not something GPs can solve alone

MORE: Cooking and dancing to be prescribed to cure loneliness instead of drugs

MORE: Living with Body Integrity Identity Disorder: A condition that convinces sufferers to amputate their own limbs

70-year-old woman smashes world record with a ludicrously fast marathon time

The 70-year-old is already planning her next race. (Picture: Bank of America Chicago Marathon)

A pensioner is making us all look bad after completing the Boston Marathon with a ridiculously quick time.

70-year-old Jeannie Rice, set a new world record for her age category after finishing the race in just under three and a half hours. She did it in 3:27:50, to be exact.

The grandmother, from Ohio, casually crossed the finish line and said she felt absolutely fine.

The previous record for the 70+ women’s category was three hours, 35 minutes and 29 seconds, set by Helga Miketta in 2013. Jeannie crushed that record by more than seven minutes – and made it in to work the following Tuesday.

Jeannie has been running marathons her whole life, with her debut in 1984 in Cleveland. Her fastest recorded time was three hours and 16 minutes at her second attempt in Columbus. Chicago was her 116th marathon.

‘I’ve been running for 35 years and it is a huge part of my life,’ Jeannie tells Metro.co.uk

‘I love competition and preparing for races helps to keep me motivated to run better and faster.’

Jeannie gets up at 5.30 am every morning to train (Picture: Bank of America Chicago Marathon)

This unstoppable granny regularly trains to work on her speed, running 5Ks and 10Ks all year round. She even travels to Florida for half the year so she can escape the cold weather and keep on the move.

‘I really do not enjoy treadmills,’ she explains. ‘The only hard thing about training is keeping going through the cold weather, the wind and the rain does definitely make it tougher.’

If you think being 70 means retirement, lie-ins and leisurely, slow-paced days, think again. Jeannie starts her day at 5.30am for a run with her younger training buddies. As marathons approach, her weekly mileage can get up to 65.

‘I run every day and make sure to get enough sleep and a good diet,’ she says. ‘Age is just a number. If you’re physically capable you should just keep running – there’s really nothing stopping you.

‘It always feels great to see that finish line, especially in Chicago. I was extremely happy to see the finish line when I knew I had broken the World Record by more than seven minutes. It was an amazing feeling.

But there’s absolutely no slowing down for Jeannie. Mere weeks after her incredible race, she’s already set her sights on her next achievement.

‘Now I have a new goal – to break my own record time in three weeks in New York City. NYC will be my 117th marathon. If we have the right conditions, I know I can break my record.’

MORE: Woman set outs to do 12 marathons in 12 months to raise money for Myanmar

MORE: Why has Weight Watchers changed its name to WW?

AD FEATURE: Cold snap hitting you hard after the summer? Tricks to help you survive these Arctic conditions

What I Rent: Warren and Jenny, £830 each a month for a flat in Southwark

Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
Warren and Jenny have lived together for years. They moved to this flat three months ago (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)

Renting in London can be many things.

The best days of your young life.

A mess of unwashed plates and a mouse infestation.

A massive drain on your money.

But as naturally nosy people, we want to take a look at what renting in London is like beyond the stories of horror housemates and landlords who don’t give a toss. That’s why each week we take you inside someone’s rented property and have a dig around as part of What I Rent.

This week we’re with Warren and Jenny, two friends who share a two-bedroom flat in Southwark.

We chatted to Warren about what he rents.

Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
They’re just good mates (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi)

How much do you pay for your flat?

£830 per month and approx £150 in bills each.

How long have you lived there? How did you find the place?

Three months. SpareRoom. We hadn’t considered living South of the River but took a shot at it and fell in love when we walked through the door.

We’re so glad we moved from Holloway now as its such a different vibe and community.

Do you like it?

We absolutely love it. Our landlord Hannah is amazing and really takes care of us and the flat. The location’s so good – four minutes walk from London Bridge or Borough.

Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
They’ve managed to make the flat their own (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)

Do you feel like you have enough space?

Yes, plenty and so much storage as it’s ex local authority – nice big rooms too, no box room.

How did you and Jenny end up being housemates?

We’ve know each other for several years and then I moved in with Jen a few years ago in Holloway.

We decided to leave a shared house and be all grown up and get a two bed flat. It was hard hitting to the bank account but we love it still, and love chilling when we get chance for catch-ups, gossip and wine.

Are there any problems with the house?

No, none so far but winter is coming so maybe we’ll find out the natural temperature of the flat, we’ll just crank up the heating more.

There are too many pubs to choose from.

Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
And clearly enjoy slogan items (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)

How have you made the flat feel like home?

We’ve bought a lot of our furniture and pictures. We both love our vintage record player cabinet, our charity shop pictures and fairy lights on the balcony. Other than that it had great stuff already it was a just a few finishing touches such as lampshades.

Any plans to move again?

Not any time soon. We love it and feel we’ve been really lucky with the flat and the landlord.

And what about buying a place?

Yes, but apparently they need real cash for that, not just Monopoly money.

Sad. Shall we look at the flat, then?

Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
The living room and dining area (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
There’s plenty of storage space (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
(Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
The dining area, where the friends can drink and gossip (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
There’s one separate toilet, plus another bathroom (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
And two bedrooms (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
This is Warren’s room (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
The rooms are both pretty evenly sized, so the pair pay the same (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
We’re starting to suspect that Warren likes plants (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
(Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
An entirely normal pillow fight between two friends in Jenny’s room (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
Cute (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
See? Storage space (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
(Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
Here’s the kitchen (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
That’s a small fridge (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
(Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
There’s a balcony too (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
The bathroom, complete with a bath (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)
Warren and Jenny who live in a flat in Borough
Oh hey, cute toothbrush storage (Picture: Sofia Bouzidi/Metro.co.uk)

What I Rent is a weekly series that’s out every Tuesday at 10am. Check back next week to have a nose around another rented property in London. 

How to get involved in What I Rent

What I Rent is Metro.co.uk's weekly series that takes you inside the places in London people are renting, to give us all a better sense of what's normal and how much we should be paying.

If you fancy taking part, please email whatirent@metro.co.uk.

You'll need to have pictures taken of your kitchen, living room, bathroom, and bedroom, plus a few photos of you in your room. Make sure you get permission for your housemates!

You'll also need to be okay with sharing how much you're paying for rent, as that's pretty important.

MORE: What I Rent: Tom, £1,733 a month for a one-bedroom flat in the Barbican Estate

MORE: What I Rent: Max, £900 a month for a room in a four-bedroom house in Tooting

MORE: What I Rent: Chris and Liv, £1,520 per month for a two-bedroom flat in Brixton

My son and hero restarted my heart and saved my life

David, left, went into cardiac arrest and his life was saved by his son, right. (Picture: David Groves)

My son Aaron was born when I was 44 – just two years after I had heart surgery to replace a valve.

It was the ultimate reward in life. And then when he was only 15, Aaron saved my life when my heart stopped beating.

On January 10 this year I carried out my usual routine. I went to the pool and swam 30 lengths, I did some shopping and picked up my wife Olwen from work.

Around 7pm she asked me to empty the washing machine and when I came back into the living room I said: ‘I feel really, really strange.’

I started hyperventilating and Olwen got me to sit down while she headed into the kitchen to get me a glass of water. By the time she got back I had blacked out.

My heart had stopped beating and I was in cardiac arrest.

My wife and son have explained the next part of the story to me as I don’t remember much.

Aaron was in his bedroom doing schoolwork. Olwen shouted to him to come down. She slapped my face to bring me round but then she saw I had turned blue.

Olwen was panicking, but Aaron took control. He said very firmly: ‘We need to do something now.’ He grabbed the phone and dialed 999, putting the call on speakerphone.

Aaron put me on the floor and checked my pulse and breathing – he found neither. He had learnt CPR five years before with the Scouts, and he trusted his instincts to start chest compressions immediately.

With the emergency services helping him over the phone, he carried on until the ambulance crew arrived. When they saw what a great job he was doing they said: ‘Don’t stop, keep going son, you’re doing well.’

He carried on while they unpacked the defibrillator. It took four shocks to get my heart beating again.

Aaron’s timing, coolness and skill were phenomenal for a 15 year old. What is so moving is that he did everything he could. He wrote a letter for me to read when I woke up in hospital, because he didn’t want me to be confused.

It started by saying: ‘Dad you have had a cardiac arrest. I called an ambulance and started chest compressions…’

Aaron wrote David a letter explaining what had happened to him (Photo: David Groves)

He was 15 years of age and he behaved like an adult. But he was just a baby. I was so lucky.

I was in intensive care for 24 hours apparently in an induced coma, and I only learnt what Aaron had done when I was in a fairly well state. I feel a debt of gratitude beyond belief. Aaron saved my life, and he was still only a schoolboy.

He was doing his GCSEs and I was worried about how it may affect him but that fear proved unfounded. He’s a bright boy and got 10 GCSEs and is now doing his A Levels. He plans on going to medical school and wants to become a doctor.

I didn’t even know Aaron knew CPR, but I’m eternally grateful that he did and he had the confidence to step in and save my life. Now my aim is to make sure I’m alive long enough to see him grow up and fulfill his plans and dreams.

I’ve cried buckets, but he is a cool cookie and has coped with everything.

I know I’m one of the lucky ones. Less than one in 10 people who have a cardiac arrest will survive, and that is thanks to the bravery of those who know CPR stepping in and using their skills.

Taking action immediately is vital as your chances of surviving a cardiac arrest decrease with every minute.

Aaron couldn’t have done more. Apparently when I was in intensive care he went back to the house with his aunt and together they cleaned it up. All the injections and medication the ambulance crew had used on me had been left around and he didn’t want his mum to see that.

He said after what she’d been through she needed to come back to a clean house.

I was in hospital for Aaron’s 16th birthday, so I didn’t have a chance to celebrate properly with him. It’s been a difficult subject for us to talk about as father and son. And that’s why I just want to take the chance this Restart a Heart Day to say a really big ‘thank you’ to my son, my hero.

This Restart a Heart Day, along with partners including the Resuscitation Council UK (RCUK) and emergency services, the British Heart Foundation are aiming to teach at least 200,000 people lifesaving CPR. Visit bhf.org.uk/cpr to find out more.

MORE: Online test reveals how likely it is you’ll have a heart attack

MORE: Eating dairy every day could lower your risk of heart disease, suggests new research

MORE: Woman undergoes heart transplant after doctors dismiss her symptoms as stress

Former Red Bull CEO launches drink that claims to cure your hangover

Hangover drink picture: SoberUp/ metro.co.uk
(Picture: SoberUp/ Metro.co.uk)

The crushing hangover – it’s inevitable after a night of drinking.

And we’ve tried every trick we can find to try to stop it.

But there’s something new that could make all the difference – Sober Up.

It’s a detox shot that claims to detox the body, support liver health and therefore prevent hangovers.

The drink is being launched by former Red Bull CEO Harry Drnec, a man who knows a thing or two about drinks.

It can be taken before, during or after drinking to help prevent a hangover.

The drink is made from a combination of naturally sourced ingredients, including turmeric, which is known for its anti inflammatory properties; peppermint, which can relive stomach problems and nausea; Ginseng, which helps with brain power; and wormwood which can help support liver health.

But you can’t get your hands on it just yet – Drenc and his team have launched an IndieGoGo page to help fund the production of the drink.

They have already secured all the funding required so the launch might not be too far away.

Full Length Of Woman Sitting On Bench
(Picture: Getty Images/EyeEm)

Their page also says that in the future, they hope to combine their current Sober Up product with CBD – a liquid extracted from the marijuana plant which is legal.

The page says: ‘Each and every day, we’re seeing new evidence that shoes CBD’s ability to help people with physical and emotional ailments, including anxiety, physical pain and steepness nights.

‘Recently, CBD has also been shown to have further benefits for liver health.

‘CBD is potentially a great fit with our core values. Until we’re able to do more research, we don’t know all the ways this new combination of Sober Up and CBD might be able to help people.’

Harry Drnec adds: ‘This product is different than anything I’ve worked on before.

‘I’m thrilled to be working on something that’s made to help people.’

MORE: No, Aldi’s new prosecco is not ‘hangover-proof’

MORE: Once you’ve nailed your pumpkin bum, it’s time to try the glitter bat butt

MORE: Have we all been grating our cheese the wrong way?

Meghan Markle crashes another site after people rush to buy Karen Gee dress

(Picture: Splash News/Karen Gee)

Whatever the Duchess of Sussex wears seems to sell out in a matter of seconds.

Handbag companies Strathberry and Everlane both saw their sites crashing after Meghan Markle carried their creations, and it’s happened to another designer.

After Meghan and Harry’s pregnancy announcement yesterday, the Karen Gee dress she was wearing seemed to catch many peoples’ eyes.

As people rushed to find the Karen Gee Ivory Blessed dress online yesterday, the site crashed, leaving the designer having to post her customer services email online to direct enquiries.

(Picture: James D. Morgan/Getty Images)

Meghan stepped out wearing the AU$1,800 (£972) shift dress on the first day of her and Harry’s tour of Australia, fittingly going for an Aussie designer.

The piece is made from premium cream fabric and was paired with Stuart Weitzman heels, a beige trench coat, and jewellery from Princess Diana’s collection.

You can still get your hands on one, but the site is continuing to glitch, so it might be worth contacting customer services first to ensure they can accommodate your order.

Instagram Photo

They take up to 21 days to craft, then there’s around a five day wait for delivery.

The Karen Gee Blessed is also available in ink and black.

The Sydney-based designer apparently sent various dresses to the Duchess of Sussex for consideration, with this simple number coming out on top.

Karen Gee told The Sydney Morning Herald she was ‘so proud, particularly because I am not a world recognised brand’.

The designer – who is a Harvard Business graduate and mum of five – also says her brand is about empowering women, something she believes Meghan does.

MORE: Harry and Meghan say G’day to thousands before Aussie welcome of beer at tea

MORE: Prince Harry and Meghan receive first baby gifts as they kick-start Australia tour

Everything Meghan Markle is wearing in Australia with Prince Harry

Meghan, Duchess of Sussex poses for a photo at Admiralty House in Sydney, Australia, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018. (Phil Noble/Pool Photo via AP)
(Picture: Phil Noble/Pool Photo via AP)

So, a lot of big news related to the Duchess of Sussex, Meghan Markle.

She’s on tour of Australia with Prince Harry. She’s also just announced that she’s pregnant.

With that much press attention on your every move, what does one wear?

Honestly, we’re blimmin’ jazzed about discovering how Meghan Markle will dress during pregnancy. Her style is pretty stellar as it is, but we expect that her maternity choices will be even more glorious.

To help us all keep track and refer back to these joyous and stylish times, we’ll be updating this post with every outfit Meghan wears during her trip to Australia. Buckle in.

Day One: Meghan wears a white Karen Gee dress at Admirality House

Prince Harry, the Duke of Sussex and Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex attend a welcome ceremony at Admiral House in Sydney by The Governor General Sir Peter Cosgrove and and Lady Cosgrove. Pictured: Prince Harry,the Duke of Sussex Ref: SPL5033573 151018 NON-EXCLUSIVE Picture by: SplashNews.com Splash News and Pictures Los Angeles: 310-821-2666 New York: 212-619-2666 London: 0207 644 7656 Milan: +39 02 4399 8577 Sydney: +61 02 9240 7700 photodesk@splashnews.com World Rights,
(Picture: Splash News)

For a visit to the official Sydney residence of the Governor-General of Australia, Peter Cosgrove, and Lady Cosgrove – and her first appearance since announcing her pregnancy – Meghan opted for a sleek white shift dress by Australian designer Karen Gee.

The dress, known as ‘The Blessed Dress’, promptly sold out and crashed the Karen Gee website. It costs AUD1,800 (£971.99)

Meghan completed her look with Stuart Weitzman nude suede pumps.

Meghan wears a Brandon Maxwell khaki shirt dress for an afternoon reception

The Duchess of Sussex attends a reception hosted by the Governor-General at Admiralty House in Sydney on the first day of the Royal couple's visit to Australia. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Tuesday October 16, 2018. Harry and Meghan will take part in 76 engagements in Australia, Fiji, Tonga and New Zealand over their 16-day trip to the Pacific region. See PA story ROYAL Tour. Photo credit should read: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire
(Picture: Andrew Parsons/PA Wire)

Meghan did a quick change for the afternoon reception at Admiralty House, swapping her white shift for a khaki shirt dress by Brandon Maxwell.

Brandon Maxwell is a favourite of Meghan – she previously wore their design, a yellow shift dress, at the Commonwealth Youth Event in July.

Just like the white shift, the green khaki dress has already sold out, but we know it cost £1,728. Whew.

The Duchess accessorised the dress with Dior nude heels and jewellery previously owned by Princess Diana – a bracelet and butterfly earrings.

MORE: Prince Harry berates fan saying ‘you can’t give flowers that big to my wife’

MORE: Prince Harry and Meghan receive first baby gifts as they kick-start Australia tour

What is a papoose and what are the benefits of using one?

(Picture: Elder Ordonez / SplashNews.com )

Piers Morgan has lots of controversial opinions. His latest thoughts were on the way Daniel Craig carries his child.

Piers mocked the James Bond actor for having his child wrapped around his chest using a baby carrier, traditionally called a papoose. The look didn’t go down well with Piers who called it ’emasculated’.

Since the tweet, several dads have defended Daniel for using the baby wrap to hold his one-month-old daughter.

So, what exactly is a papoose and where did it come from?

A papoose is the old school name of what most of us know it as a baby wrap or sling. The term papoose has Native American origins and goes as far back as 1643.

Papoose historically referred to a child as a term of endearment and was also used in context of the child’s mother.

After the word gained popularity in the UK, it came to be known as a child carrier, regardless of sex.

Papoose is also the name of a rapper who’s having a baby with Remy Ma. We do not think Piers’ use of ‘#papoose’ refers to the rapper’s new track, however.

Piers claims that his problem is with the papoose and not the act of a dad caring for his child.

‘He’s not carrying it (the baby), that’s my point,’ he wrote. ‘He (Daniel) is using an emasculating papoose. James Bond would never use a papoose to carry his babies.’

The Good Morning Britain presenter said it’s more masculine to just use your hands to hold your child while out and about with them.

Your hands might get tired, but hey at least you’ll be manly, according to Piers. Bad news if you’re disabled, as you should still find a way to hold your child in a masculine way, lest you should be emasculated.

Father and his baby boy in a baby carrier ; Shutterstock ID 200176769; Purchase Order: -
(Picture: Shutterstock)

But perhaps Piers wasn’t aware of the research highlighting how healthy and safe it is for parents to use baby wraps and slings (more safe than using one’s hands at least).

According to Dr. Eckhard Bonnet in a 1998 article published on Didymos, a baby wrap or sling holds a baby’s body in a comfortable, correct position, much as the womb carries a fetus before birth.

Eco-conscious website Small Footprint Family also highlights other benefits of using a papoose; ‘Upright carrying massages your baby’s abdomen which promotes healthy digestion, and prevents physical abnormalities associated with infants who spend large amounts of time lying on their backs or bellies (such as hip dysplasia, frog legs, or flattened skulls on the back or sides)’.

The position helps parents to bond with the baby, giving them warmth and comfort, and for mothers allows access for breastfeeding.

Hands-free carrying also allows parents to go about their day, care for the child’s needs as well as taking care of other responsibilities or children.

Piers probably just forgot all that.

MORE: Mums offer advice to the Duchess of Sussex following royal baby news

MORE: These stunning portraits capture the real essence of Brixton

MORE: Couple’s maternity photoshoot in a pumpkin patch has a hilarious twist

Stella McCartney launches breast cancer charity after losing her mum

Stella wants to give practical support for women with cancer (Picture: Kristy Sparow/WireImage)

After losing her mother to the disease in 1998, Stella McCartney has long campaigned for breast cancer awareness.

Now the 47-year-old designer is launching her own foundation, Stella McCartney Cares, dedicated to the prevention and early detection of the disease.

Beyond awareness and discussion, Stella wants the foundation to have a practical impact for those who have been touched by cancer.

The Louise Listening bra is specially designed for women who have undergone breast cancer treatments and mastectomies.

With front fastening and soft internal pockets for use with prosthesis, the design aims to help minimise discomfort for thousands of women.

Louise Listening Bra (Picture: stellamccartneycares.org)
(Picture: stellamccartneycares.org)

As part of the launch of the new campaign, Stella has announced that 1,000 of these special bras will be given out to women with cancer – for free.

‘It’s a cause so close to my heart,’ explains Stella, ‘the reason I designed the Louise Listening bra is my experience of seeing someone I loved go through such a traumatising operation.

‘I found that the mastectomy bras available at the time were just another moment where they lost their femininity and they lost their sense of who they were as a woman.

‘Through Idris’ narration, we challenge the taboo surrounding men talking about breasts openly with their partners,’ it says on the website.

‘It also serves as a reminder that breast cancer affects both men and women and the experience extends to their loved ones.

‘Poignant moments appear throughout the video as we connect intimately with women like Phoebe, who launched a community charity after beating the disease, and Sarah, a mother of two who overcame both breast cancer and PTSD.’

MORE: How can a relationship survive grief?

MORE: Michael Buble is not retiring after son’s cancer battle

MORE: Mums offer advice to the Duchess of Sussex following royal baby news

Mum with fear of Halloween wants to pay someone to take her kids trick-or-treating

Halloween Concept - little white ghost with halloween pumpkin candy jar doing trick or treat with curved pumpkins over bats and spider web on Wooden studio background.; Shutterstock ID 732168391; Purchase Order: -
(Picture: Shutterstock)

A mum is looking to pay a professional £50 an hour to take her children trick-or-treating, because she’s too scared to go out with them.

The mum-of-three, who has children aged nine, seven and three, posted a job advert to Childcare.co.uk last week, as she says she’s been unable to find anyone else to have her kids.

She’s willing to pay the person £50 an hour, but is just too terrified to leave the house at Halloween.

The mum says she has severe social anxiety, but she doesn’t want her fear to impact her kids’ time out having fun.

The advert reads: ‘I get very scared at Halloween because of the costumes and speaking to strangers to ask for sweets for the kids.

‘I have severe social anxiety and am uncomfortable with trick or treating but I’d like for my kids to experience it. I’d hate for them to miss out on this because of me and having put it off for the last 3 years I feel I can’t anymore.

(Picture: Getty)

‘The kids’ father isn’t in the picture and I no longer speak to any of my family. I’d ask friends but I don’t know many people with children, so they’re not doing trick or treating and are busy on Halloween, as it’s a school night!

‘I’d like someone who’s qualified to look after children, have all the right qualifications and be DBS checked.

‘If anyone is willing to help me out, I can pay them up to £50 an hour, I would imagine it would only take a couple of hours.

‘It would also be useful for the person to come round and help the kids get ready, I hate costumes! So in total, it might take 4 hours of your time.

‘I’d like the children home by 8pm at the latest to put the two youngest kids to bed, so ideally, you’d be working from 4pm-8pm.

‘Can anyone help me?’

Richard Conway, founder of Childcare.co.uk said: ‘When I saw this advert put onto the Childcare.co.uk website, I wanted to help the woman instantly. She’s clearly trying to do the best for her children and is more than happy to pay someone to perform this service.

‘I got in touch with her to ask how I could help, and promoting this advert seemed like the best way I could help her.

‘Hopefully more people will see this advert and be willing to help her and her children out. Children usually love getting dressed up and going out trick or treating, so I’m sure the kids will love it!’

MORE: Once you’ve nailed your pumpkin bum, it’s time to try the glitter bat butt

MORE: Looking for Halloween makeup? Pinterest reveals the most popular looks of this year

Surfing in Croyde has all grown up – here’s how to plan your own luxury seaside break to this part of north Devon


Luxuriating in the freestanding, roll top bath at the foot of my Chalet Saunton bedroom, memories of the gritty shower stalls at the Croyde campsite, where I used to doss down during the surfing weekends of my 20s, are dissolving in a hazy swirl of aromatherapy scents.

Here, I’ve had the warmest of welcomes (and a basket of Ila apothecary bath and body products) from the housekeeper, who has also made sure that there’s gluten free bread in the pantry; there, I used to be shouted at by a site manager who banned alcohol, was ruthlessly determined to keep groups of guys and girls biblically separate and nursed, as far as I could tell, a basic hatred of people in general.

I could be a million light years away, yet in truth, less than 2 miles separates me from those soggy pitches.

In this area of north Devon, such a level of luxury would have been unimaginable 12 or so years ago; Saunton Sands Hotel next door was about as upmarket as it got.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

Surf culture started to really take off in the UK in the late 90s, becoming as much a fashion statement and lifestyle choice as an occasional hobby.

Many of the original proponents of the trend probably still inhabit the wave-lashed shores of Cornwall and Devon, but the urbanites and part-timers have grown up, got city jobs and swapped the hoodie for a well-cut suit, and the budget off-peak rail ticket for a 4WD.

The desire to brave the elements is still there, but wild weekends are re-lived with a luxurious twist, like mac’n’cheese with a dusting of truffle shavings.

As a local, Chalet Saunton’s owner, Tim Fleming, has witnessed the shift first hand and, sensing a demand for more opulent accommodation, responded with the upscale development of the site on which his family home once stood, transforming it into six three-bedroom apartments and a two-bed penthouse.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

His intuition was spot-on, as it turns out: the property’s very first August hit 90% occupancy.

‘When I first started surfing in the early 90s, there were just a couple of Kombi vans in the car park and only two of us out back in the water,’ he recalls.

‘Now, the car park is a sea of Range Rovers and convertibles, and the water is full of surfers of all ages and abilities.

‘This new crowd prefer smashed avocado and poached eggs to cream teas and bingo; they’re affluent, fit and keen to embrace natural resources on a weekend break from the city.’

You’d have been hard-pressed to find an avocado, let alone a smashed one, back in the day; I clearly remember grumbling that Croyde needed to take a leaf out of Bondi’s book.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

Is there anything more annoying than an Australian in England? Yes, as a matter of fact. Yes there is. There’s not being able to find a decent coffee on a Saturday morning after a night in a tent.

The Thatch, legendarily the pub into which everyone would cram at the day’s end to sink pints and swap tales of surfing exploits, is still there, still crowded, and its pub grub is still satisfactory – but one night there suffices.

Its biggest draw was always the fact that it was right there, a walk from and a stumble to the campsite.

As four-wheeled adults, there are far more enticing options available – I love a plate of nachos and a beer as much as anyone, but there’s no comparison with the perfectly cooked lamb rump and velvety shiraz that I demolish at the award-winning The Kings Arms in nearby Georgeham, the kitchen of which is stocked by its own greenhouse nursery.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

In fact, north Devon is home to more Michelin stars than Manchester and Liverpool combined – further proof of this coastal location’s coming of age.

The Olive Room, run by local chef Thomas Carr, gained its first star in 2016 and retained it the following year.

Located around 20 minutes from Croyde, its menu puts a heavy emphasis on seafood, with the likes of hand-dived scallops, line-caught wild north Devon bass and Lundy crab making my mouth crackle with saliva as soon as I read the words.

Given the views from Chalet Saunton – think floor to ceiling glass, yielding seamlessly to the broad expanse of Saunton Sands – you’d be forgiven for not wanting to venture too far for food.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

I mean, what issue could you possibly have with the mindlessness of endlessly stirring a risotto when you can gaze at those shifting tides, while your bare feet are warmed by wall-to-wall underfloor heating and your wine is chilling in the climate controlled fridge?

Lukewarm beers from a contraband cool box? Not any more – and the morning coffee issue has been amply solved by the presence of a Nespresso machine or, in the village, by relative newcomer The Stores, where your extra-shot soy milk latte is barista-crafted to perfection, and groceries to take back to the chalet would give any so-called city ‘providore’ a run for its money.

Naturally enough, the surfing offering has upped its game considerably, too – having once wriggled, shivering, inelegant and exposed, into fraying wetsuits of dubious hygiene, we’re now ensconced in a heated blue double decker bus, which forms the changing room of Croyde Surf Academy, tugging on thick, fresh, seam-free neoprene.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

The Academy guarantees to have absolute beginners standing by the end of the first lesson, while those who have surfed before have various betterment options, ranging from stance improvement and linking their turns, to getting to grips with the bigger waves out back.

From what I remember – and I’m not saying that it’s much – surfing and partying used to go hand in hand.

These days, it seems, virtually every activity needs to come with a side order of virtue to make it an adult-worthy pursuit – so it’s unsurprising that the area now offers a number of retreats that combine surfing with wellness.

Chalet Saunton’s two night autumn offering, hosted by renowned surf-trainer Andrew Blake, focuses on techniques for both body and mind, with an emphasis on yoga, mindfulness and a nutrient-rich diet, with guided meditation and vinyasa flow yoga sessions.

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

Running from November 16-18, the two night stay, which includes locally-sourced vegan meals and fresh juices and a sports massage, will set you back £575 per person – more than half of what I was earning in a month when I first started weekending here.

But then again, that was before I – and Croyde – became a grown up.

Oh, and speaking of grown ups? Croyde is awash not only with them, but with their offspring.

That joyless campsite manager may have been able to saltpeter a few on-site, in-tent shenanigans, but he had absolutely zero control over what happened when everyone went back to the Big Smoke at the weekend’s close.

What else to do in Croyde:

(Picture: Sarah Rodrigues)

‘Tarka the Otter’ author Henry Williamson hailed from nearby Georgeham and wrote his novel based on real places in this region.

Spanning a figure-of-eight, 163 miles and diligently waymarked, the Tarka Trail follows the otter’s journey and is popular with both walkers and cyclists; short and circular sections of it provide a reassuringly land-based excursion for when you just can’t face shoe-horning yourself into your wetsuit.

If – and no one will judge you for this – you just want to hole up in your apartment (the penthouse sofas are Le Corbusier, after all) then at the very least, the book you curl up with should be this one.

Where to stay in Croyde and how to get there:

Set out over four floors, Chalet Saunton is both family and pet friendly.

Saunton Sands beach is accessed via a direct footpath from the landscaped gardens, where there’s an outdoor shower and space for hanging wetsuits.

Minimalism is the order of the day here – no chintz, china nor sprigged fabric in sight – and the effect is one of light, space and the kind of uncluttered comfort that lends itself perfectly to a short break reboot.

A stay in a three-bedroom apartment (sleeps six) is priced from £350 per night, with a two night minimum, and includes a welcome hamper of local produce, plus products by British organic skincare brand Ila Apothecary.

You can book a stay or a place on the autumn retreat online.

MORE: Anguilla is the perfect Caribbean destination for a soft adventure holiday

MORE: Hot sun, quiet beaches and good food: How a glamping trip to Croatia turned out to be the best of both worlds

MORE: The ultimate gourmet adventure: Where to find Italy’s most traditional foods

Beyond Tokyo: How to get more out of your trip to Japan with a visit to its peninsulas


See Tokyo by night, eat your way around Osaka and enjoy the hilariously over-functional toilets.

These were the generic recommendations from friends when I started planning my two-week adventure around Japan.

I added them to my list and promptly returned to my research.

Japan has been firmly at the top of my ‘dream countries to visit’ list for three years.

Primarily it was to feast on my favourite cuisine, but also to experience a totally different culture and explore the country’s natural beauty.

I was determined that my first visit would involve more than robot shows in Tokyo and ramen in Osaka.

I began planning a tri-peninsula trip, visiting the Izu, Noto and Kii peninsulas, travelling at lightning speed on Japan’s highly efficient bullet trains.

With no more than konichiwa (hello), arigatou (thank you), and Google Translate in my back pocket, I wondered how the next two weeks would go.

The Izu Peninsula

After a brief stint in Tokyo, sampling rainbow candy floss, the aforementioned robot show and staying at Shinjuku’s weird and wonderful Godzilla Hotel, it was time to start the adventure.

Japan’s Izu Peninsula is located in Shizuoka Prefecture, around 100km southwest of Tokyo.

Atami, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Atami, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

The region is famed for its volcanic origins, creating rugged coasts, sea caves and mountains.

Atami’s views are comparable with Italy’s Amalfi Coast, while the jagged formations of the Jogasaki Coast will have you feeling like you’ve stepped onto another planet.

With volcanic roots come hot springs, and a trip to an onsen (a Japanese hot spring bath) is a total must.

Clothing isn’t permitted in these traditional public baths, but don’t let that put you off – the initial awkwardness swiftly melts away in the soothing warm waters.

Ryugu Sea Cave, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Ryugu Sea Cave, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

The town of Shuzenji feels like the epitome of the word ‘zen’, with its ancient temple, warming springs, meandering river and bamboo forest all worth visiting.

Venture along the east coast and you’ll reach the mysterious Ryugu Sea Cave.

Once you reach the top and peer in you’ll see why people have associated it with mystery, as the undeniable outline of a heart comes into view.

Soba noodles and wasabi, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Soba noodles and wasabi, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

This is a top region for foodies too, famed for tricky-to-grow wasabi (lots of dishes come with a whole wasabi root and grater!) and healthy soba noodles.

The highlight of the Izu Peninsula for me was visiting Kawazu Nanadaru – a series of seven waterfalls, along a serene river trail.

The finale? Nanadaru Onsen Resort where you can relax in 40 degree waters, with an awe-inspiring view of the largest waterfall.

Nanadaru Onsen Resort, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Nanadaru Onsen Resort, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

The Noto Peninsula

A few hours northeast of Tokyo, the Noto Peninsula is another region of natural beauty, with mountains, waterfalls, rice paddies and rock formations aplenty.

Hire a car and go on your own adventure, kicking off with a ride along the unique Chirahama Beach Highway.

It’s the only beach in Japan where driving is permitted, and let’s face it, it’s not every day you see a main road directly on the sand.

Chirahama Beach Highway, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Chirahama Beach Highway, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

Fancying a break from driving, I spent one morning learning a form of calligraphy-based art with Noto resident Ayane Muroya.

While attempting to create something worthy of hanging on my wall at home, I learned about her life in Noto, and her years living and studying in England.

As for the calligraphy, it was a very soothing experience – but with my wall space at a premium, I’m not sure my finished work will make the cut!

Calligraphy in the Noto Peninsula (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Calligraphy in the Noto Peninsula (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

I’ve heard visiting the town of Wajima was a must, mainly for the market, which sells fresh fish, seafood and the region’s famous lacquerware.

It was a great place to stock up on gifts for friends and family, including chopsticks, bento boxes and handmade ceramics.

After days soaking up the isolation and nature of the coastal route around the Noto Peninsula, it was a surprise to find such a buzzy city waiting at the end.

Kanazawa, nicknamed Little Kyoto, is metropolitan and youthful, with a downtown filled with hole in the wall bars and restaurants.

Kanazawa, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Kanazawa, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

It’s also a cultural hub, with Kenrokuen (one of Japan’s top landscape gardens), Kanazawa Castle, the Nagamachi Samurai District, Omicho Market, and the 21st Century Museum Of Modern Art all vying for your time.

The Kii Peninsula

South of Osaka is Wakayama and the Kii Peninsula, a mountainous region with mist and low-lying clouds creating magical views.

Named as one of Lonely Planet’s top regions to visit in 2018, the region was described as the perfect place for visitors to ‘dig a little deeper’ into Japan.

Kumano Kodo, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Kumano Kodo, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

After using soy sauce everyday over the past few weeks, it was fascinating to learn how it’s made at Yuasa Soy Sauce Factory.

There’s a chance to taste one of the region’s most intriguing delicacies too – soy sauce flavoured ice cream, topped with a few drops of soy sauce.

It was surprisingly delicious, with a salty/sweet sensation similar to salted caramel.

Soy sauce ice cream, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Soy sauce ice cream, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

Many visit this region to hike the Kumano Kodo.

The ancient pilgrimage route is dotted with sacred shrines and passes through some of Japan’s most stunning scenery, including bamboo forests, waterfalls and vast mountain ranges.

The iconic view of Seigantoji Pagoda with Nachi Waterfall was a great reward after an active day hiking in the region!

Seigantoji Pagoda and Nachi No Taki waterfall, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Seigantoji Pagoda and Nachi Waterfall, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

This tri-peninsula trip was a great introduction to Japan, showcasing the country’s natural beauty, traditions and culture.

I still enjoyed the robot show in Tokyo, but I was so happy to have ventured beyond the country’s obvious attractions.

Where to stay and how to get there

Several airlines offer direct flights from London to Tokyo, with returns starting from £620 depending on the time of year.

Once there, I’d recommend picking up a Japan Rail Pass (approx. £315 for 14 days) so you can visit each peninsula by train. When trains are busy, it’s advisable to reserve seats in advance, which can be done for free at the station ticket office.

I’d also recommend renting a WiFi device for your trip. You can collect these at the major airports, and you’ll appreciate being able to check routes and translate on the go.

I stayed at a mix of hotels, B&Bs and traditional ryokans across my trip.

Ryokans are Japanese inns, usually with their own public bath, and offering an authentic Japanese dinner and breakfast as part of the package.

You’ll get a real flavour of Japan when you tuck into the huge number of tiny dishes (mostly seafood, fish and pickled vegetables), wear a yukata (a cotton kimono) and sleep on a futon.

My favourite ryokan experience was at Hyakurakuso in the Noto Pensinsula, which had breathtaking views over Tsukumo Bay, a cave bath, and exceptional food, worthy of several Michelin stars.

Hyakurakuso Ryoken, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)
Hyakurakuso Ryokan, Japan (Picture: Chloe Gunning)

For more information on Japan travel visit the Japan national tourism organisation’s website and build your own personalised Japan itinerary at Enjoy My Japan.

Chloe Gunning is a blogger and creative producer. You can follow Chloe’s travels at wanderlustchloe.com and on InstagramTwitter or Facebook.

MORE: 11 reasons to book a glamorous Sicilian yacht holiday

MORE: Budget city break: How to see New York without breaking the bank

MORE: 9 reasons you should visit Alberta, Canada, in winter

It’s all well and good having disabled people in your adverts, but we still can’t access your shops

Only 8% of the disabled community are wheelchair users, so installing a ramp simply isn’t enough (Photo: Getty)

‘But everywhere has to be accessible by law, right?’

This is the reaction I get more times than not when I discuss access issues with people who don’t have an impairment or know someone with a disability.

I am met with sheer disbelief when I tell them that no, in fact, not everywhere is accessible and that the law repeatedly fails to protect us from discrimination.

Access, or lack thereof, affects the disabled community in such a profound way.

It’s not just a case of having a lack of accessible toilets; our whole life is dictated by inaccessibility – from entering bars, restaurants, shops, schools, higher education, work, going on holiday, taking public transport to simply going down the street where no drop curbs are implemented or the potholes haven’t been maintained.

The Equality Act 2010 is meant to ensure disabled people have equal access in all areas of life.

This may mean changing the way in which services are delivered, providing extra equipment and/or removing physical barriers.

However, the stark reality is that the Equality Act repeatedly fails to protect the rights of the disabled community.

It is shrouded in ambiguity, making it easy for it to be bent and – in my opinion – abused, and thus, it’s not fit for purpose.

So what exactly do I mean when I say ambiguity?

Adjustments only have to be made if it’s reasonable to do so. What’s a reasonable thing to ask for depends on things like: your disability, how practical the changes are, if the change you ask for would overcome the disadvantage you and other disabled people experience, the size of the organisation, how much money and resources are available, the cost of making the changes and if any changes have already been made.

With 13.9 million people living with a disability in the UK, access needs to represent more than just a small percentage of this figure.

For example, when most people think of access needs, they immediately think of ramps and lifts.

However, only 8% of the disabled community are wheelchair users, so installing a ramp simply isn’t enough.

Samantha says the Equality Act is failing disabled people (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

Like most things in life, access comes down to money. So if a small establishment can prove that making adjustments will financially impact their cafe, restaurant, or shop, then they are not bound by law to add an accessible toilet for example.

Society’s lack of understanding around disability also impacts access needs.

On a recent trip to a theatre, I was told that staff had been trained to carry wheelchair users down the three flights of stairs.

This renders you completely at the mercy of others – your life is literally in their hands. Offering this as ‘reasonable adjustment’ is not only dangerous but down right degrading.

Even if reasonable adjustments have been implemented, they are often abused – or staff simply aren’t trained to implement them correctly.

For example, I am often faced with accessible toilets being used as storage rooms for stock, and even – in one incidence – for storing a sofa.

So what are the initiatives being implemented to improve access and inclusion?

The high street seems to be leading the way in being more forward thinking and inclusive, and so they should.

The disabled community has a total spending power of £249 billion – something referred to as the Purple Pound.

We’ve seen many high street brands using more models with disabilities and even launching accessible clothing lines.

Although I wouldn’t in any way want to diminish the power of featuring inclusive models in advertisements, or the introduction of accessible clothing ranges, I most certainly would have appreciated seeing disabled models in my magazines growing up. I can’t help but feel as though this is more tokenistic and almost fruitless if our basic access needs aren’t even being met when entering venues.

I fear that inclusion and diversity is such a buzzword at the moment and that many organisations are jumping on the band wagon without actually taking the time to understand the needs of disabled consumers and implementing appropriate access.

What happens when inclusion and diversity stops being the Zeitgeist and are no longer popular? What are we left with?

Purple Tuesday, set to take place on November 13 this year, is the UK’s first shopping day that’s established to recognise the importance and needs of disabled consumers and promote inclusive shopping.

Endorsed by the Department of Work and Pensions, all participating retailers will make at least one long-term commitment aimed at improving the experience for their disabled customers.

The nature of the commitment is up to the individual retailer and, as far as I’m aware, no timescale for these implementations have been set.

I worry that the ignorance surrounding the Equality Act is why progression for a more inclusive society is so darn slow.

If most people think that everywhere must be accessible by law and are not aware of the blatant ‘grey areas’ then a change in legislation won’t occur.

This is why I have launched a campaign to get people to see the reality of how inaccessible the UK really is.

I am asking people to take pictures of inaccessible venues and posting them on social media with the hashtag #DontWantOurCash.

I’m hoping to build a body of evidence to take to Parliament and ultimately change the Equality Act reasonable adjustments legislation so that there will be no ‘grey area’ and access means access.

For more information on the #DontWantOurCash Campaign please visit, the website, Facebook page or Twitter.

MORE: Stop referring to people with disabilities as ‘inspirational’ – my body does not define me

MORE: ASOS deciding to show models in wheelchairs means the world to disabled fashionistas like me

MORE: BBC’s Leading Lady Parts failed to address the discrimination disabled actors constantly face

Cat lovers, rejoice: You can now buy a pussy themed merkin

Kitty merkin
Behold: A cat face merkin. (Picture: MerkinBoutique/ Etsy)

Just a warning here: We’re not actually talking about cats so this article is not suitable for children or for work. If you’re an adult relaxing at home, read on.

Ah, the merkin.

While for many years the smooth waxed look has reigned supreme, there are some pubic warriors battling for the right to have hair around their genitals.

But still, pubic hair remains an undercurrent movement rather than the norm. A full bush won’t truly be in fashion until we all strive towards having more hair down there, and until adverts for waxing and lasering are replaced with Christmas lists full of merkins (also known as pubic wigs).

A merkin is designed to create a neatly trimmed – but very full – pubic hair region where perhaps there is no longer one, due to excessive waxing habits, alopecia, or a struggle to use one of those tiny razors.

Thankfully the merkin industry has progressed to a point that you need not settle for the standard long and luxurious or sharply trimmed. There are all kind of colours and designs available to fit every need.

And cat-lovers, we may have found the perfect merkin for you.

A delightful Etsy-er named MerkinBoutique has designed not one, but two different cat-themed merkins.

kitty wig
And a second furry cat design (Picture: MerkinBoutique)

The first one is a cat’s face design that you may perch atop your clitoris, while the second shows a wonderfully furry cat’s body, including a tail, available in black or hot pink.

The cat face costs £9.45 while the full-body kitty is £10.24.

The product description advises that merkins can bring ‘playfulness to the delicate area of women’, and that while they have a ‘decorative purpose’, they also have a ‘more important role to play’: saying ‘NO to boredom and routine, because it likes to surprise, ignite the passion, and bring new experiences.’

Well, quite.

To wear your kitty themed merkin you simply stick it on your pubic area then go about your sexy business.

You could also use the merkin as part of a saucy Halloween costume (a black cat merkin could work as a witch’s companion – just deck out the rest of your bod in a witch outfit), or perhaps for your next cat themed party. There’s no reason your merkin couldn’t double up as a furry face sticker or an accent for your belt.

The possibilities truly are endless.

If a cat-themed pussy wig isn’t quite your speed (why not?), do not fear, for MerkinBoutique has plenty more designs to take your fancy, from diamante crowns to furry pink hearts.

But really, our heart’s longing for a pubic wig belongs firmly to the kitty-themed designs. Thank you, MerkinBoutique, for catering to the not at all niche needs of cat lovers who want their genital region to be meow-worthy.

MORE: Fendi’s £750 fur-trimmed shawl looks a lot like a vagina

MORE: Women describe what an orgasm actually feels like

MORE: H&M releases new line of affordable, stunning wedding dresses

Asda is selling white chocolate and salted caramel cheese for £1

(Picture: Asda)

Cheese lovers, rejoice: Asda is selling white chocolate and salted caramel cheese.

No, we’re not sure how to feel about it, either.

Yes, cheese is great, and white chocolate and caramel are glorious together, too – but all in one? We’re not so sure.

The 90g wedge of red tractor farm-assured Wensleydale cheese contains pieces of white chocolate and chunks of salted caramel, and costs just £1.

So, it’s not breaking the bank if you want to give it a go.

???ASDA Is Selling White Chocolate And Salted Caramel Cheese
(Picture: Asda)

The cheese contains 406 calories per 100g, and we’d suggest serving it on a digestive biscuit to keep the sweet flavour.

This isn’t the first time Asda has released a chocolate flavoured cheese.

Last November, the supermarket launched Double Chocolate and Orange cheese – a large block of cheese filled with chocolate and orange.

Asda said the citrus kick in the cheese came from a candied orange peel, and also featured chunks of milk and white chocolate.

The description read: ‘Strength – two. Really creamy, with sweet chocolate chips and zesty orange. No artificial colours or flavours. Suitable for vegetarians.’

Currently, the orange chocolate cheese isn’t available in stores or online – so if you have a sweet tooth and a love of cheese, you’ll have to settle for the white chocolate and caramel version.

MORE: Tired of chocolate? Lovehoney’s adult advent calendar is full of sexy goodies

MORE: B&M releases Kellogg’s cereal filled advent calendar

Woman creates brilliant Instagram pictures using just books

(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)

Instagram isn’t short of stunning pictures; whether it’s travel, food, or just really attractive people having fun.

People also love showing off what books they’re reading, but perhaps no one is as enthusiastic about reading than bookworm Elizabeth Sagan.

She has over thousands of books and creates stunning pictures with them, posing as some of the characters and worlds she’s reading about.

Her 90,000-strong followers tune in to see what creations she makes on her account as her ideas have become more complex and intricate over the years.

Elizabeth is also best friends with James Trevino who has also become an Instagram sensation thanks to his artwork created out of his favourite books.

METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
Elizabeth said this is her favourite creation as it is a warrior look (Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)

When it comes to creating their ‘bookstagram’ the pair help each other assemble the books and take the photographs.

Elizabeth tells Metro.co.uk that some of the books are borrowed from James and donated by people such as her dad.

‘I have so many that after giving away 28 bags of 10kg each I can barely see the difference,’ she says.

‘I have no idea how many exactly there are, but I’m sure there are thousands. And if you count the ebooks too, the numbers are even bigger.

METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)

‘But not all of them are my cup of tea – in my collection you can find a lot of old science textbooks or other books that are outdated, for example, old computer science books thanks to my father.

‘I’ve not read even half, they are so many! But I’m reading as much as I can.

‘A picture can take from half an hour (the fortunate case) to a few hours (the unfortunate case) to create. After that comes the editing, which can also take from 15 minutes (the fortunate case) to more than an hour (the unfortunate case).

‘The good part is that I’m taking my pics in batches, and a batch usually translates to 16-20 pics that last for a month or so.’

Here are some more creations by Elizabeth:

METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)
METRO GRAB VIA INSTAGRAM Elizabeth Sagen who creates astonishing images out of books https://www.instagram.com/p/BlijdYpHisJ/?taken-by=elizabeth_sagan
(Picture: Elizabeth Sagan/Instagram)

MORE: It’s all well and good having disabled people in your adverts, but we still can’t access your shops

MORE: 70-year-old woman smashes world record with a ludicrously fast marathon time

MORE: Ballet Black is the dance company recruiting black and Asian dancers

Do you know what temperature your fridge should be?

(Picture: Getty)

You might opt for environmentally-friendly packaging or use a bag for life instead of plastic ones but there’s something in your kitchen that still leads to food waste every week.

It’s your fridge. Half of us don’t know the optimal temperature our fridges should be to ensure its contents don’t go off any earlier than they should.

Food waste charity WRAP said British people aren’t aware exactly what temperature their cooling devices should be which can, in turn, lead to more food waste.

(Picture: Getty)

WRAP said the average fridge in UK homes runs at 7°C which is higher than what the Food Standards Agency (FSA) recommends – something between 0°C to 5°C.

‘Our fridges are often too hot for our food to handle, which means that milk and other food items are going off too soon and getting thrown away. We wouldn’t chuck money in the bin, but the average UK family wastes £70 a month by wasting food that could have been eaten,’ said Helen White, from WRAP’s Love Food Hate Waste initiative.

And it’s important for your fridge and freezer to be in the right condition to stop the growth of bacteria, says the FSA.

Some foods need to be kept in the fridge to help slow down bacterial growth and keep them fresh and safe for longer. Generally, the colder the temperature the slower bacteria will grow, but cold temperatures don’t stop bacteria growing altogether (for example, listeria monocytogenes).

You need to check that your fridge is cold enough using a fridge thermometer. This is because the dials on fridges don’t always show you the right temperature. The coldest part of the fridge should be below 5°C.

Don’t overfill your fridge. Leaving space allows air to circulate and maintains the set temperature.

If your fridge is looking full, take out items that don’t need to be chilled, such as beer. This will make room for the items that do need to be chilled for safety reasons, such as raw, ready-to-eat and cooked food.

To keep food safe

  • Store any food with a ‘use by’ date, along with cooked dishes, salads and dairy products, in your fridge
  • Keep chilled food out of the fridge for the shortest time possible during preparation
  • Cool cooked food quickly at room temperature and then place in the fridge within one to two hours
  • Don’t leave the fridge door open for too long

MORE: Extreme climate change could happen in just 12 years – and it’s the poor and vulnerable who will suffer most

MORE: Someone is actually going to grow weed in space

MORE: A bottomless halloumi brunch is coming to London

B&M launches McVitie’s biscuits filled advent calendar

(Picture: B&M)

B&M has just launched an advent calendar filled with biscuits and it looks amazing.

The McVitie’s biscuit advent calendar features 24 days of classic biscuits, including Penguins, Clubs, Gold Bars and even a bag of Iced Gems.

They calendars are expected to sell out as they’re only £9.99 – and they’re in stores already.

Everyone knows that biscuits are meant for being dunked into tea, so if you fancy dedicating your countdown to Christmas with tea and biscuits, you should consider investing in a tea advent calendar, too.

B&M launch McVitie's biscuit advent calendar
(Picture: B&M)

For instance, this £20 24 days of tea advent calendar by John Lewis, which costs £20 and features a selection of fine teas and fruit infusions to enjoy every day of Advent.

Flavours include mixed red berry, Moroccan mint, India spiced chai and sencha leaf.

24 Days of Tea Advent Calendar, 320g ??20.00 Exclusive to John Lewis & Partners
(Picture: John Lewis)

Of course, if you fancy standard tea you could always simply buy yourself a box of PG Tips. Draw dates on the box to make it feel more festive.

B&M’s biscuit calendar comes just after the store launched a Kellogg’s cereal calendar for those who can’t face eating chocolate first thing in the morning.

It features a range of cereal bars including Coco Pops, Frosties, Rice Krispies and squares, as well as two pop tarts.


MORE: Tired of chocolate? Lovehoney’s adult advent calendar is full of sexy goodies

MORE: Asda releases ghost themed crumpets in time for Halloween

How does vegan keto work?

(Picture: Getty)

Keto is the diet plan (or lifestyle plan, depending on who you ask) that’s swept the nation.

The general idea is that you cut down your carbohydrate intake and instead opt for high-fat options, ensuring a decent amount of protein within this.

The lack of carbs is supposed to change how your body burns fat.

Instead of turning carbs into glucose, your liver converts fat into fatty acids and ketone bodies, starting a process called ketosis which allegedly prompts your body to consume its fat stores and helps you lose weight.

It’s had a big resurgence recently, with people swearing by it for weight loss and to alleviate symptoms of certain health issues.

Despite some scientific studies backing the keto diet, it’s not foolproof or without its problems.

It’s not suitable for diabetics or those on blood pressure medication, and was previously seen as out of step with a plant-based lifestyle.

(Picture: Getty)

Because of the fact you have to really amp up your fat content, it’s normally taken as read that you’ll have to consume tons of full-fat cream, cheese, eggs, oily fish, and meat.

Also, since carbs are heavily restricted when it comes to keto, it’s another missing food group from a vegan’s already-limited diet.

A new trend, however, according to a report by Pullman Hotels & Resorts partners and Healthista, is vegan keto.

It’s certainly not an easy one to follow, but the report states ‘with keto-focused diets tried, tested and proven to work for weight loss, issues around its lack of eco-friendliness have become a big focus with meat requirements impacting the planet as the livestock industry generates the same amount of greenhouse gases as global transport combined.’

The way to do vegan keto is essentially to get really, really good at substitutions.

Within a the keto plan, around 5% of your energy should come from carbohydrates, up to 20% from protein, and around 75% from fat. Instead of filling those quotas with animal products, find fatty plant-based alternatives.

So, instead of butter, coconut oil and avocado oil can be used. Similarly, use coconut cream or avocado in dishes that require a creamier texture. Nuts are another great source of healthy fats.

Your go-to proteins will be tempeh, seitan, and tofu, then your (albeit small amount of) carbs will come in the form of leafy greens, mushrooms, and other fruit and veg.

Fat bombs are a common way to keep your fat intake up, and there are plenty of vegan recipes out there if you think you’ll never meet your daily quota from three meals a day.

Since you’re staying away from grains, legumes, sugar, fruit, and tubers like potatoes, boredom is the main enemy.

Vegans often know how to be creative with recipes that already exist – haven’t you ever heard of vegan fish and chips?! – but this will be trickier since you have to count the amount of carbs and fat you’re eating.

Luckily there are vegan keto recipe sites and plenty of recipe books to keep things interesting and balanced.

Go see your GP before any big diet change, and consider taking extra D3, B12, & B6, DHA & EPA, iron, zinc, and taurine.

Even if you’re already eating fully plant-based, you should understand the implications of limiting your diet further, and only a medical professional can advise you properly (beware Instagram snake-oil salespeople).

Vegan keto-friendly foods


  • Avocado
  • Avocado oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Olive oil
  • Nuts


  • Tempeh
  • Seitan
  • Tofu
  • Other meat substitutes (check to see if they fit your macronutrient quanitites)


  • Kale
  • Mushrooms
  • Spinach
  • Brocolli
  • Asparagus
  • Celery
  • Berries

MORE: Woman creates brilliant Instagram pictures using just books

MORE: Asda is selling white chocolate and salted caramel cheese for £1

Browsing All 44194 Browse Latest View Live