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SDF - A Lifestyle Element



New Yorker | City dweller | blogger | solo traveler | lifestyle | photography | interior design | cuisine | social media | DDB Blog Ambassador | LUCKY Magazine Contributor



Updated: 2017-11-20T07:51:12.704-05:00

 



Living The Dream, Or In A Dream? Moving To A Foreign Country

2017-11-20T07:51:12.713-05:00

One of the great things about exploring the world by yourself is that you can truly get a feel of whether you belong in a certain place or not. Part of the reason people go traveling is to find somewhere that they can fit in, feel inspired, and finally find a place where they can wake up every morning and enjoy life to its fullest. The vast majority of us would call that home; others would call it a new beginning. But, when we go abroad, sample a different culture and lifestyle and feel that it's going to suit us down to the ground, are we merely suffering from honeymoon syndrome, where actually the grass is greener on the other side? It can be a very difficult thing to address, especially when you are seriously considering packing up your bags and leaving home for good, not just to move down the road or to another city in the same country, but taking the plunge thousands of miles away from anything you can consider as home. Put simply, is moving abroad to live a good idea? Let's try and answer the question.Living The Dream…The one thing that plants the seed in our mind is the draw of a new culture. When you ask people why they want to move to another country, when they got “everything they could possibly need” right here at home, is that they are on the lookout for new challenges. Conversely, it's not about the new challenge, but rather finding somewhere that is less challenging. The speed of life is something that is cropping up a lot now, and when you look at countries to the Far East, such as Indonesia, they are partially becoming westernized. So, you may have ventured on a backpacking journey yourself, and have found somewhere where life and culture are very simple. But is the reality far different to what you imagined it in your head? We go traveling to escape a sense of monotony in our usual lives, and a lot of people don't ever stop traveling. It's embedded in their DNA coding, that the travel bug is something lots of people don't get over. So, those people who go country hopping, and can't stay in one place for very long, are they going to actually benefit from moving to another country? They may in the short term, but over time, the differences will begin to show…Feeling Homesick…Whatever reason we move somewhere else, whether it is for love, career, or we just want to begin again, it can be a very big adjustment. Even those that are used to constant changes in their life, the seismic shock of moving to a completely different culture can have some negative effects on a person's well-being. Whether or not you believe in the concept of feeling homesick, especially those that have the travel bug, as life goes on, you start to assess your priorities in life. And the times we feel this the most when living in another country is the big events in life, such as weddings, big birthdays, and, unfortunately, the death of a loved one. It is this last one that hits home quite hard. When you are not there for these life-changing events, but are thousands of miles away, it can make you feel regretful that you ever left in the first place. This is a very difficult thing to get over. And if you have set up a new life for yourself, in another time zone, you may even feel a sense of disconnect to your old life, and it's those big moments in life that will make you question whether you want to move back home or not. The other big issue that can happen when you live abroad is that you actually don't fit in as well as you think you did. Of course, people are friendly and accommodating, but it can still feel very isolating if you don't get the little idiosyncrasies, all the things that can take years and years to understand. Unfortunately, it's not one of those things that you can figure out overnight, it can take years before you realize that it is time to move on. And, as your life priorities change, that idea of moving back to where you once came might sound more appealing, not just because you have parents to look after your newborn baby, or you know the roads better, but in actual fact, you understand the vibe better [...]



Want To Reinvent Your Bathroom? How You Can Do It

2017-11-15T13:38:43.216-05:00

A bathroom is one of those rooms in your home that can add serious value, especially when you take the time to ensure that you make the right decisions for design and implementation. However, it is also a room in your home that you can retire to after a particularly stressful day. Running a bath, filling it with warming water and your favourite bubble bath and scent. Lighting the candles, popping a towel on the radiator to warm and enjoying one of your favourite drinks. Champagne, anyone? Sounds like heaven, doesn’t it? However, a bathroom can be a true nightmare for some, and can certainly be on your list of home improvement jobs to do. Which is why I thought I would share with you some of the ways you can reinvent your bathroom.Think about what you want from your bathroomOne of the first things to consider when deciding to revamp your bathroom is to think about exactly what you want from it. Do you use your bathroom solely to get washed and dressed? Do you like the idea of creating a relaxing environment? Do like to take baths or are you more of a shower person? These are all the questions to ask yourself, so you truly know what you want from your bathroom. After all, you could potentially be investing a lot of money into this, and so it is worth making sure that you get what you want from the makeover and revamp. How much space and budget do you have?The next thing to mull over would be how much space you have. Not everyone has the luxury of a big bathroom, and often the room itself can be on the small side. Only managing to squeeze in the bare essentials. However, a builder or expert might be able to move things around and make the room a much more useable space, so don’t feel deterred if you feel you don’t have much room as often it could just need a tweak in the layout and design. The next thing to decide upon would be how much money you have to spend. There is no hiding from the fact that a bathroom revamp is going to cost some money, and the more you want to do, the more expensive the job will be. Choose your bathroom suite wiselyNow comes the fun bit, the choosing of your bathroom suite. Now you have a better indication on the size of room, the layout and of course, your budget, you can now go bathroom shopping and enjoy sampling all the different designs and options available. Will you go for a standalone shower and separate bath option? This when perusing elegant freestanding bathtubs could be on the agenda. Or perhaps you like the idea of practicality with a shower over the bath option and decent vanity unit filled with storage options. It is completely up to you what you decide to go for, and while it can be fun, it can also leave you with quite the decision to make about what might be the best way to go. If in doubt, why not bring someone along with you to provide an alternative opinion?It’s all about the color choicesYou have chosen your bathroom suite, so now it's time to think about a theme and color scheme. Many people opt for a white bathroom suite which means that you can decide on an array of color options to suit your own taste and personality. Another element to consider would be how you plan to decorate the bathroom. Will you be thinking about tiles or splashbacks? Maybe having a wall that isn’t tiled that can be painted or used to display pictures or prints. A You also might need to think about how you plan to use the bathroom. For example, if you like the idea of relaxation the neutral or calming colors could be the way to go. How should you accessorize your bathroom?Finally, how do you plan to accessorize your bathroom? Do you want to have some sort of running theme or choose trinkets and ornaments that you love and simply want to display? Are you going to consider your color pallette with your choice of towels and flannels? Maybe adding some scented candles into the mix. A bathroom can be just as much a room that you style than other locations in your home. It is time to get creative. I hope that these tips help you to reinvent your bat[...]



Problem Skin No More With These Top Tips

2017-11-06T10:23:12.938-05:00

Many women expect to have problems with their skin during those puberty teenage years. You expect that you are going to have problematic skin with the odd outbreak of spots here and there and more commonly associate things like acne with this time of your life. But more women are entering their twenties and thirties and finding that they have a whole new heap of skincare issues to deal with, what's the deal with that?It’s actually very common and there can be a number of reasons why women start to struggle with how their skin looks during this time of their lives. One major factor can be stress and problems in your daily life. It can also be caused from a lack of sleep or even just burning the candle at both ends with too many hours spent working hard and playing harder, we’ve all been there. I wanted to share with you some of the ways you can tackle the problem skin for good. Getting a proper skincare routine in placeYour skincare routine is important to ensure that you keep your skin looking good and healthy. However, we can all forget to be consistent with this and keep to the same regime where we use the same products morning and night. Consistency can also means ticking with the same products, and too often if we don’t see results quickly we can end up switching and trying something else. It’s important to develop a routine that works for you and then stick with it. Handling some of the major problems with skin Often we can have issues with skin that just a simple routine won’t cure, and this is when you may need to consider other action to get rid of embedded acne or scarring. Heading to companies like Dore Aesthetics could help solve some of the major issues enabling you to take a handle on your skincare routine moving forward. Other options you could consider would be to see a skincare specialist who would be able to put together some products and actions that would work well with your particular skin type. Are you drinking enough water?Water is one of those things that we can take for granted. However, it happens to be nature’s natural detox which means that keeping your body hydrated and drinking the recommended amount can help improve your skin condition. It keeps your skin hydrated and helps to create a natural glow to your skin. Drinking plenty of water has other benefits as well, so it is definitely worth changing some of your habits if you don’t drink enough at the moment. Could it be in the food that you are eating?Just like water can have a positive effect on your skin so can your diet and the food that you consume each day. A diet filled with sugar and junk type food full of fat and unhealthy oils will have a negative effect on your skin. Eating a well-balanced diet and ensuring that you eat the recommended allowance of at least five fruit and vegetable portions a day could help see your skin improve dramatically. Some of the best foods to eat include omega-3 rich foods, citrus fruits, kale, pumpkin and sweet potato, to name a few. There are more online in this article. Have you tried some of the popular at home methods?There are some great at home remedies that can help improve you skin complexion, the tone and colour of your skin. Some of them sound a little messy but they promise great results. One includes using freshly squeezed lemon juice on your face and then to wash off after ten minutes. You then rub slices of cucumber all over your face. Doing this each day can reduce the signs of problematic skin. Others include using ingredients like turmeric, honey and baking soda. There are plenty of methods online to try. Could something be going on with your hormones?Finally, it might be worth having a chat with your doctor to have some tests done on your hormone levels. The hormones in your body have much control on your mood, your feelings and things like your skin, so an imbalance somewhere could be the route cause of your problematic skin. This is possibly an option if you have tried to improve yo[...]



Hip, Hip Hooray: A Guide To Healthy Hips

2017-11-06T10:50:58.269-05:00

Our hips take a lot of strain. As we get older, many of us start to have hip problems as a result of not looking after our joints and muscles. This can have a negative impact on our mobility. Here’s how you can keep your hips free of wear and tear.Don’t be a couch potatoNot being active and sitting down all the time shortens the hip flexors. Being active can encourage these inner muscles to stay strong. You can overdo exercise and wear down the hips, but generally you can take precautions to prevent this (wearing running shoes whilst jogging for example can soften the impact on your joints). One of the best exercises for your hips is swimming as this puts no strain on your joints whilst helping to stretch the hip flexors and build muscles around the hips. Swimming is often recommended as a sport to people with existing hip problems as it can help those with bad hips to keep fit without causing any pain. Avoid wearing heels to oftenRegularly wearing high heels has been found to cause a lot of damage to the joints. The hips in particular can suffer as they are pushed forward, putting more pressure on the joints. The hip flexors are also shortened whilst wearing heels due to this walking posture. Heels shouldn’t been worn every day to work and should be saved for special occasions. If wearing flats isn’t possible and heels are part of a dress code, you could consider opting for lower heels that put less strain on your joints. Generally speaking, no employer should force their staff to wear heels and you should speak to your employer about this if this is the case.Try stretch exercisesTight hip flexors can cause a lot of discomfort – many people experiencing back or hip pain will find that these muscles are the culprit behind the pain. There are many stretches to help fix tight hip flexors. These include lunges and leg curls. Sports such as Yoga and Tai Chi that revolve around stretches are great for keeping the hips the healthy by constantly keeping flexors supple.Eat the right foodsThe foods you eat can affect the health of your hips. By and large, many processed foods that contain unhealthy fats and refined carbs can cause weight gain on your hips. Any unhealthy weight gain is bad for these joints, as it can put pressure on them as you walk. This can then lead to osteoarthritis.Foods that are good for the hips include fish and nuts. These are full of omega-3, which is vital for healthy joints. In fact, such foods are generally recommended to people with hip pain. You should also make sure that you’re getting a good amount of calcium in your diet. This nutrient is found in dairy products and fish and can increase bone strength, leading to less problems in your hip joints.[...]



Dive In to These Great Underwater Experiences

2017-10-24T10:31:41.761-04:00

Image sourceIf you’re planning a vacation and you’re trying to come up with something different to do, take your head out of the clouds and place it firmly in the ocean! Did you know that over 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is water? Yet, how much time do we take to explore its depths? The average person spends very little time in the water, which is a shame because it is home to some very unique sights and amazing experiences. If you’re interested in exploring underwater, here are some of the best aquatic experiences on the planet:See Grenada’s Underwater Sculpture ParkThe best thing about exploring underwater is, of course, the beauty of nature that we don’t usually get to see in our everyday lives. That being said, us humans have a good track record of creating our own beauty, and that is very evident at the Underwater Sculpture Park in Grenada. Founded in 2006, the park, which is located underwater at Molinere Bay, is basically an artificial reef created out of various unique sculptures, which also attract plenty of natural wonders, including fish and dolphins, too! It’s a seriously magical place that everyone should make the effort to see at least once in their lifetime!Go Scalloping in FloridaIf you want to stay in the United States, but the pull of the ocean is too much for you to ignore, one rather unique trip you might consider taking is open to Homosassa, where you can partake in one of the many scalloping excursion trips that take place there. You’ll need nothing more than a good bathing suit, and snorkelling mask, which will enable you to explore the warm under waters of the state, where as well as seeing and collecting your own scallops, which you’ll be able to eat later, there’s a good chance you’ll see plenty of other aquatic animals too!Stay at Fiji’s Underwater ResortIf you want to spend more than a couple of hours enjoying the exotic sights of the underwater world, then you simply must fly out to Fiji where you can stay at The Poseidon Undersea Resort in a hotel room that is actually located right down on the seafloor. Imagine laying in bed watching all manner of tropical fish float by - you’ll feel like you’re in your very own Disney movie! Even better, by pushing a button in your suite, you’ll be able to feed those beautiful fish for a once in a lifetime experience that you’ll never forget! It really is an amazingly magical place.Make Friends with Great WhitesImage sourceGreat white sharks are equally magnificent and terrifying, so if you’re the adventurous type and you’re looking for a unique underwater adventure that you’ll be able to dine out on for years to come, why not book yourself onto a Great White dive? There are numerous places in the world, including California, where you can go down into the water and get up close and personal with the beautiful beasts (don’t worry, you’ll be safely sequestered in a cage) and that is sure to get your heart pumping!Get Your History Buff on in IsraelIf you like the water and you love your history, then it might just be time to start planning a trip to the Caesarea National Park in Israel. There, you will find the Old Caesarea Diving Center, which is basically an underwater archaeological site, where you will be able to see Sebastos, which was built by none other than King Herod himself, over 2000 years ago, in all of its glory. You’ll also see sunken ships, drowned docks and long-lost cargo amongst other things! Eat Dinner Underwater in the MaldivesIf sleeping with the fishes in Fiji isn’t your thing, what about dining down there instead? You won’t have to spend quite so much time under the water, but you will get to experience its delights close up and personal, and you’ll get a good meal into the bargain too. Where can you do this? At the Conrad Maldives Rangali undersea restaurant - which is the only one of its kind - that’s where!See a Shipwreck in AustraliaImage sourceThe Yongala [...]



Garden Wedding: Preparations for Marvelous Day

2017-10-23T14:49:32.801-04:00

Time to tie the knot? The sweet agony of preparation for a perfect wedding is upon you. Preparing such event can bring some weight to the shoulders, but if planned timely and with consideration of all possible scenarios, wedding day should flow smoothly in the joyful and loving atmosphere. Saying the vows in your garden is the most romantic idea, but it will take some work to achieve that dreamy and warm surrounding that you and your guests will eventually enjoy. Garden weddings emanate love, intimacy, and simplicity, but rest assure they are not simple. Enough spaceSpeaking of intimacy, unless you own a huge manor with a park, home weddings are best suited for a small number of guests. Setting up a certain number of chairs that will fit in the backyard is not enough since your guests will mingle in the yard and the house. Make sure to provide enough space for everyone and to create a comfy environment rather than overcrowded one by cutting down the guest list. Intimate weddings are for the family and friends, not acquaintances and their plus one. Evaluate the houseEstimate whether your home has the potential of providing the necessities for such event. Having enough space is a good thing, but having well-equipped space is even better. Think about the kitchen and if it is big enough to provide accommodation for catering staff. Is there enough counter spaces, or is the fridge big enough for storing the food for such a big day? How many bathrooms there are and will the guest form a waiting line in front? Keep in mind all the features of your home and plan how to overcome possible shortcomings. Spruce up the gardenSince this is where it all happens, your garden deserves a new look. Being a spring bride means going green thumb the fall before. Think of the colors you wish to have in your garden and choose which flowers to plant so that they can bloom by the wedding day. Tend to the lawn and take a tip from people in Hoselink, sprinklers will make the grass look fresh and thick. If working in the garden is taking too much time, consider hiring a landscape designer who can make your backyard look like a home for fairies. What to rent Easy. Almost everything. Plan the budget and make a list of all the possible renting expenses for there will be many. You will need to rent all the necessities like tables, chairs, glasses, plates, napkins and table linens. Renting a tent is a smart move, whether in case of bad weather or to stay out of the sun. To make sure your home will provide enough power, make sure to rent a generator too to avoid problems while all the music, lights, fridges, grills, and roasters are on. Last, but not the least, renting portable bathrooms is a must. Good news is there are quite a luxurious portable bathrooms now, with lights air conditioning, sinks, and mirrors.Vendors inspectionBefore start renting almost everything, call the vendors to come over and inspect the property. That way you will be sure there won’t be any surprises on your big day. Catering company should send someone to estimate whether your kitchen is suitable or should they bring their portable kitchen. Tent companies inspect the ground to see if it is uneven and if there is a need for building the foundation. Other vendors, like the band or the florist, may also have requirements that you should take into account.Decoration Decorating the site is the most fun part, but make sure not to go overboard. Since already in the garden, remember to keep the place light and natural with some tasteful decoration that will elevate the spirit of the present guests. Fresh flowers, lanterns, with small white lights on the branches and the ground will create a fabulous impression. Legal stuffFind out if your wedding officiant is authorized to perform the ceremony on your chosen location and if not, take time to find the one that is. Also, see if you need to have a city permission to par[...]



Fade To Gray: A Serene Monochrome Bedroom Space

2017-09-22T10:14:41.379-04:00

A monochrome bedroom can look both striking and serene if it's done properly. Making it the perfect scheme if you are looking for a way of making your bedroom over. So, with this in mind check out my advice below on how to get a comfortable but stylish monochrome bedroom with the minimum of effort. What is monochrome?Monochrome is all about decorating your room in the values of only one color. The color that is usually picked is black, and then its contrasted with white. That doesn't mean that you have to only use plain black though, as grays are value shades of black too. Although you are welcome to go for pure black and white if you want a particularly striking look. Decorating a room in monochrome can work so well because it's easy to do. Most items of furniture come in black and white, as do many fabrics. Making it easy to find things to decorate the room with without having to shop around too much. The simple contrast of black and white colors can be calming too if executed properly. As well as it being something of a trend at the moment. So keep reading to find out how to get this look in your own home. Design schemeNow, the design scheme of the whole room is something you will have to consider very carefully in a monochrome space. This is because the interplay of texture, pattern, and light can differ so widely. Even though you are using the same tones and shades. For example, a feature wall painted in a black or dark gray will make the room seem a lot cozier and intimate. Whereas all white walls will open up a smaller space making it seem lighter and bigger. Regarding texture, a contemporary look can be achieved with lacquered or laminated furniture items that are geometric. Although you can soften a monochrome look considerably by using natural materials like wood in more traditional styles. Along with aged finishes. Something that demonstrating monochrome style i truly flexible enough to be customized to your particular needs and wants. Patterns in a monochrome bedroom are important too, as you can achieve many different looks with just white, black and gray. Use small geometries for a modern urban feel, plain color blocks for calm serenity, and illustrative designs to add a little character and whimsy to an otherwise stark room. Bed The bed is always the central feature in any sleep space, and the monochrome room is no exception. Although you will, of course, want to stay away from natural wood colors and go for black, white or gray instead for the frame and headboard. Remember too that, as we spend way more time in our bed that we do our cars it is something that is worth investing in, Not just for the look and its ability to fit in with our monochrome design scheme but also for its quality and comfort. So if you need a new bed to fit in with your monochrome design, then remember to check out sites that examine the top rated beds on the market. As when it comes to where you sleep, it's not all about the visuals, you need to get the size and firmness level right too. Otherwise, you'll be left with a super stylish room that you won't want to spend much time in because it won't be comfy enough and that would be a real waste.DecorationsAs monochrome is such a huge trend at the moment, it is pretty easy to get decorations like cushions, wall hangings, and pictures that easily fit in with this design scheme. A very easy way to decorate your monochrome bedroom that won't set you back too much money is to buy a selection of frames and use them to display black and white types pictures, photos, or illustrations on the wall. You can even be a bit naughty and add an accent color with the frames if you like. Rose gold and copper being the most in vogue at the moment. Think carefully about your picture placement in this sort of room because you need to tread a fine balance between having enough i[...]



The Best Ways To Travel By Yourself!

2017-09-20T11:12:30.591-04:00


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Traveling on your own can be a brilliant experience, you’re only going to have yourself to look out for which means that your money is going to go further and you can do exactly what you want because there is no one else telling you what to do! But what are the best ways to travel when you’re on your own? Well, read on and find out!

Travel Groups

This slightly defeats the object of traveling on your own, however it’s a great way to meet more people that are likeminded and doing the same thing that you’re doing! Singles travel groups are great for those of s who want to meet new people and go traveling at the same time; the people in your group are going to be taking the exact same route as you and will be most likely wanting to do the same things as you so you’re not going to be held back at all, and even if you are you can drop out at any time to get on with your own thing! This makes solo travel not so lonely, and makes it a bit safer too!

Camper Vans

Hiring a van and going out on the road by yourself is an experience truly like no other. You’re going to get to drive to wherever you want to go, giving you a much wider scope of freedom because you’re going to be able to get to places much quicker than you usually would on foot, it allows you to traverse countries or states in a matter of days instead of weeks. This is a much quicker version of doing it all on foot, but it’s brilliant for anyone who just wants a taste of what it’s like to travel without all of the hard and grisly bits!

Bed And Breakfast Hopping

This is a very commonly used technique amongst solo travelers, and you can see why! B&Bs are a great service to use if you’re only going to be staying somewhere for one night; the prices are cheap enough for the one night, rooms often only accommodate one and you get a breakfast in the morning to set you up for the rest of the day. You’re going to be able to travel from one to another each day, giving you a comfortable place to rest and eat after a hard day of traveling.

All of these things are great for the solo traveller as all of these options are going to suit you! Join a travel group to meet up with like minded individuals who are doing the same thing as you for some companionship, perhaps rent out a campervan to be able to travel the roads with no one else bothering you or hop between B&Bs to get you through the nights with comfort! If you’re looking for areas of the world to travel to that aren;t very expensive to go to at all, then read this to see which places you should be visitng!



6 Reasons Why Europeans Would Love NYC

2017-09-11T10:51:38.673-04:00

If you’re from the old continent and you’ve decided to open your wings and fly to a new adventure in the States, then New York City is the perfect place to start your new life. As Truman Capote summed up quite rightly, New York isn’t a tree or a street or a house, something that belongs to you, but you belong to it anyway. The feeling of belonging is exactly what brings the various districts, cultures, and people of NYC together. Wherever you come from, you’re from NYC when you live here. In fact, it’s difficult not to love NYC as there’s so much the city has to offer – and keeps offering day after day, night after night. But if you’re European, visiting the Big Apple can feel like a very long journey. After all, you’ve got amazing countries just next doors. So why should you come and see NYC nevertheless? I can give you 6 excellent why you will love New York City if you’re from Europe. New York City#1. Your fashion world might implodeIf you’ve got a strong sense of fashion, you’ll enjoy the New Yorker’s approach to fashion more than anything else. Fashion in the Big Apple is very different from Europe: The contrast in style and personality is appealing, to say the least. Compared to the effortless and timeless Parisian elegance the New York gal always follows the next big trend. Trends in NYC come and go as fast as you can blink, while Paris cherishes a sense of underdone style that never dies. In the Big Apple, it’s about getting noticed, and consequently mixing brands, colors, and trends for a ‘notice my style’ effect. Not an avid admirer of the Parisian style? How about the edgy and experimental class of Londoners? The New York style has a researched runaway touch to it, while British girls are happy to mix and match their bold and edgy patterns for an individual festive style. If you love your brands, you’ll enjoy the American branded style in New York. What about the German style? Berlin is a cultural hotspot that happily mixes flea market discoveries and high-end fashion. There’s a sense of eccentricity that brings together unmatchable patterns. This eccentric mismatch of labels, designs, and prices is a bright clash against the polished NYC trends. #2. We happily mix cabs & public transportIf you’re used to living in big towns, you’re probably an expert in public transport solutions. Places like Oslo have a vast network that goes from the sea to the mountains just via subway/tramway and buses. If you live in London, you’re certainly an expert of the Oyster card, the public transport card that allows you to use boats on the Thames – the ones connected to the transport route – intercity trains and subways all for the same price. There are buses too, but they tend to be a favorite only at night when the subway stopped running. Paris also uses a strong network of subways and inter-regional trains to connect all the suburban areas. For most cities, taxis tend to be a one-off solution to take you to an appointment without the stress of switching between transport connections. Here, in NYC, taking the cab is a much more natural exercise, and especially for short distances. It’s a change of mindset for the European culture, but most budget transportation in NYC adds cabs for short travel, whether it’s to reach to neighborhoods safely at night and to avoid being crammed in public transports when you’ve got a lot of things to carry. We love our iconic yellow cabs and are happy to book the trendy limos from JFK Car Service from the airport into town. Traveling by cab is a lot cheaper than you might think, as long as you’re smart with your transport choices. Short distance and defined services are okay. Just don’t grab a cab to get you to the other end of town as it’ll cost you an arm!#3. The Big Apple is a melting pot of culturesWe are a[...]



#NYFW - New York Fashion Week Master Schedule Fall 2017

2017-09-06T12:02:35.207-04:00


MASTER CALENDAR 

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OPEN TO PUBLIC SHOWS

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#NYFW Special: Fashion Comparison New York vs. European Capitals

2017-09-06T11:13:26.468-04:00

When it comes to fashion, despite what you may believe, Europe and the USA are quite different. If you’re an avid traveler, and a fashion-savvy one at that, you will have noticed the vast difference in style between women from European capitals and ladies from the US, New York city included. Now, if you haven’t had the chance to personally compare and contrast, we’re here to give you all the details concerning the differences in the fashion and style department, and then you can be the judge as to who wears it better.Paris vs. New YorkOk, the differences between a classic Parisian and New York gal could literally fill an entire book, but we’ll try to narrow it down. It’s important to emphasize that New Yorkers are always in pursuit of the next big trend, and they follow each and every one of them like there’s no tomorrow. They’re also known for those ‘Carrie Bradshaw’ impossible combinations that are just beaming with colors and prints. That is exactly why fashion here is much more disposable. Trends have a lifespan of a fruit fly, and it’s no wonder new clothes are quickly discarded to make room for new ones. New York girls also have a tendency to mix not only different prints but clashing styles as well – they’re all about the ‘notice me’ effect’. For instance, the athleisure style that has been dominating the streets of NYC for quite some time allows women to pair their tracksuits with expensive bags and patent leather loafers.This is something you could never spot on the streets of Paris. Parisian girls are all about effortless and timeless elegance. Their staple outerwear doesn’t change with the arrival of a new trend – it’s always a trench coat and a well-tailored winter coat that fits just perfectly. For New Yorkers, denim and leather jackets, such as the ones by Ena Pelly Clothing, are staple outerwear items. With Parisians, the mix of color and fabric is very streamlined, and there’s always a poignant yet subtle detail gracing their outfit. Neutral tones and monochromatic outfits trump everything else. There’s a certain ‘underdone’ quality to their style, but it’s always impeccable, although a tad restrained. The Paris fashion week might be ostentatious, but modesty rules the streets, even when they’re wearing high-end garments.London vs. New YorkThe style of your typical British girl could be described as “girly with an edge”. When it comes to high-street, there’s no denying that London girls do it better than anyone else. They will pair a floral skirt or shorts with black opaque tights, and complete the look with plimsolls. As trendy as New York girls are, they can never be as experimental as London girls. These gals will mix and match without giving it a second thought. In a way, they have that Parisian careless quality, but their choice of garments is bolder and edgier. As mentioned, the classic New York style revolves around trendy pieces and these women usually have that ‘just stepped off the runway’ look. British girls will rock their wacky colors and flaunt their ‘festival style’ all year round. The differences can be spotted even in garments from British and American designers. You have trendy and polished by Ralph Lauren on the one side and then punk, eccentric and clashing by the one and only Vivienne Westwood. You can now judge for yourself. Berlin vs. New YorkAs The New York Times Magazine points out, Berlin is a city of inexpensive living and a laid-back lifestyle. Everything is done at a slow pace, but it’s undeniable that Berlin is a cultural hotspot. It’s also a place where high-fashion meets flea market finds. Just like Londoners, Berliners have a knack for eccentricity and matching the unmatchable. Matching jeans and jacket thrown over a kimono toppe[...]



Kitchenspiration: All Your Favorite Recipes, But With A Twist

2017-09-04T11:33:28.131-04:00

Like most people, you know what you love. But sometimes, eating exactly the same recipes week after week can get a little dull. But fear not, you don’t have to raid the supermarket to find something entirely new. Why not just tweak your favorites for a new experience? Here are some popular recipes, but with an interesting twist.Swap Out Regular Pasta For ZucchiniIs there anything that zucchini can’t do? If you’re trying to cut back on refined carbohydrates, like soba noodles or instant noodles, zucchini might be the perfect fix. The best way to make zucchini noodles is to use a spiralizer. But even if you don’t have one, you can make them by hand. Either use a mandolin - preferably with the right attachments. Or just use the grater, making sure to use long strokes the maximise the length of each “noodle.”Go For A Portobello Burger Instead Of BeefAccording to estimates from Britain, people eating plant-based diets has increased by nearly 300 percent over the last decade. Thus, it seems as if we’ve reached a threshold, with more and more people willing to try meat-alternatives.One of the most popular “meat alternatives” - and something which has been around forever - is the portobello mushroom. Unlike many meat substitutes, products which use industrial processes to mimic the flavor and texture of meat, portobello mushrooms are all-natural. Most people think that portobello mushrooms are a different kind of mushroom from regular white mushrooms, but it turns out that they’re just regular white mushrooms you find in the store which has been allowed to mature for a few extra days and open up.Want a delicious tasting burger that’s something a little different from the usual? Try making a spelt, mushroom, avocado burger.To Make The Spelt RollSpelt is an ancient grain that is related to modern wheat. Unlike modern wheat, however, it has a dense, nutty flavor. First, put the spelt, some active yeast and a tiny bit of sugar into a bowl and mix it up. Then add lukewarm water and knead with your hands until you get a doughy, non-sticky texture. You’ll need to fold the dough a few times to make sure that all the particles of flour are incorporated into the mixture.Next, leave the yeast to react for about an hour. The yeast will feed on the sugar in the dough, creating pockets of air which will then give the spelt rolls a large rise. Finally, cut the dough into roll-size balls and place them on baking paper, put them in the oven at 200 degrees celsius for 20 minutes.To Make The Mushroom BurgerWhile the spelt rolls are cooking, it’s time to make the mushroom burger. Take the portobellos out of the packet and put them on a baking tray. Get some garlic, black pepper and thyme and crush it all up to make a paste. Smear the paste on the gills of the upturned portobellos and put them in the oven for 15 minutes with the spelt rolls.While the rolls and mushrooms are cooking, grab a couple of avocados and mash them up in a bowl. When the rolls are done, cut them in two and smear them with the mashed avocado, just like you would do if you were making avocado toast. Then add your choice of toppings. Pineapple rings, seitan, chopped sundried tomato, salsa, and salad leaves all work really well.Mix Up Your Morning MilkWhen it comes to milk, we’re living in extraordinary times. Just a few years ago, the only alternative to cow’s milk was plain, bland soya milk. Now though, there are dozens of different kinds of milk, including goat milk, almond milk, hazelnut milk, rice milk and even milk made from oats. Try pouring a different kind of milk on your muesli the next time you sit down for breakfast.Almond Butter Cups Instead Of Reese's Peanut Butter CupsLove Reese's peanut butter cups? You’re not alone. But did you know tha[...]



Style And Substance: Value-Adding Projects For Your Home

2017-09-05T08:02:14.579-04:00

When you think about your home, how do you feel? Is your home a safe haven, a relaxing retreat or your undisputed happy place? If so, this is brilliant news. We all strive to find a sanctuary that makes us feel calm and secure. While it’s essential to feel comfortable and celebrate our individual style at home, it’s also wise to remember that your home represents a financial investment. This is probably the most important and valuable asset you’ll ever have, so it’s always a good idea to think about how you can protect and grow your money. If you’re keen to ensure your home delivers on all fronts, it may be worth considering undertaking work to increase the value of your nest. Here are some of the best value-adding projects out there.Loft conversionIf you’re lucky enough to have a loft, you’re almost certain to make money if you convert it into a functional room. Loft space is often redundant, but it can offer a versatile range of uses. You could use the attic to create an extra bedroom, a den for teenage kids, a guest suite or a study or studio. If you have more usable space, your home will also appeal to a wider range of buyers when you do come to sell. That extra room could make the property a viable option for families, as well as singles and couples, for example. The average cost of a loft conversion in the US is around $49,000, but the figure will vary hugely according to the size of the space, the use of the room and the types of materials you use. In most cases, this kind of project could increase the value of the property by up to 20 percent. ExtensionExtending your home may be an option if you have a growing family or you’re simply eager to make the most of your plot. If the house is relatively small and you don’t need a lot of land at the back, for example, adding an extension could enable you to create an extra reception room, a study or a large, open plan kitchen. Building an extension isn’t a cheap way to increase the value of your home, but you can really reap the rewards when you sell your home if you stick to a budget. Make sure you can cover the cost of the building work before you sign on any dotted lines. If you need more money to finish off the interior details, there’s nothing wrong with waiting and doing the final bits as and when you can afford them rather than automatically considering options like an installment payday loan. Sometimes, you have to speculate to accumulate, but don’t get into a situation where you can’t afford to complete the project, and you owe money. Get a number of quotes before you make a decision, and make sure you know exactly how much money you can afford to spend. Basement renovationLike lofts, basements often represent wasted space, but they can really enhance the look and appeal of a property if the conversion is done well. Basements make excellent kitchen-diners, and they’re also great for offices, home gyms, wine cellars, games rooms and playrooms. If you are thinking of renovating your basement, it’s wise to call some local building firms and get some quotes. You may find that one company offers a completely different price to another, so shop around. The cost of a project can vary hugely, so make sure you have an accurate written quote before you sign any agreements. It’s always worth getting an idea of how much value the project could add by asking local real estate agents for advice. Looking in magazines and online for ideas and inspiration can also be a useful exercise, as it can be hard to imagine how the space could look when you’re staring at a dark, empty space. It’s particularly beneficial to consider revamping the basement if you have a small kitchen and you want to target the family market[...]



10 Simple and Affordable Interior Design Tips to Create A Bedroom That Feels Like Home

2017-08-31T15:01:10.376-04:00

The bedroom is my favorite room in the house.It was where I played as kid, where I spent most of my time when I moved into my first share-house and it is still a room that holds a great level of comfort and enjoyment for me to this day.However, thinking back to my share-house days, it took me some time to work out how to make my bedroom look and feel like ‘my bedroom’.A great interior designer will tell you is above two things above all else: letting the room inform the design and making all the elements you use do as much as possible. That second point is crucial for anyone who wants to do more with their bedroom space with limited resources.I’ve put together 10 awesome tips on how to create the bedroom decor that feel right to you - on a budget. Every one of these ideas is completely accessible to anyone and demonstrate how a lot can be done with not much to create a bedroom that feels like home.LinenThe most important part of a bedroom is … the bed. Whether you prefer neutral colors or bright patterns, keep in mind how your bedsheets will look in relation to the rest of your room. For example, if you have curtains with a bright pattern on them then make sure these don’t clash with your bedsheets. Choice of material and texture can also have a huge impact, so try to educate yourself on the different fabrics available before you buy and avoid ordering online if possible as touch is everything when it comes to linen. You can also decorate your bed by adding a pile of cushions or a snuggly down comforter on top. It is also crucial to note that without proper care of your sheets, the look you initially create in your bedroom can fast deteriorate. Ensuring proper care when washing, drying and storing will give you the look you want for much longer.Wall Tapestry An easy way to give your bedroom character and cosiness is to hang a tapestry on your wall. These are very lightweight and easy to hang up. You can choose from hundreds of prints and countless colors. They come in a variety of sizes and can look great over your bed or on a particularly empty wall. Keep in mind that dark designs will absorb light from your room, while light designs can add brightness to dark rooms. Also, consider how different colors and patterns will look with the rest of the room, especially your bed linen, curtains, and other textiles.   Photographs What better way to personalize your room than to put up your favourite memories? Whether you frame them, hang them up from a string with wooden pegs, or pin them to a cork board, photographs will add character and color to your room. It can be nice to be surrounded by images that make you feel at home, especially if you’ve just moved to university or into a new room or house.Posters and Prints Posters and prints are another easy trick for decorating and personalizing your bedroom. Whether it’s a picture of your favorite band, an inspirational quote, a poster from your favorite event, or just artwork you like, you can easily make your space your own with a few large prints. If you’re feeling super creative you could even draw some posters yourself. Try putting some up on walls that could use some decoration and seeing how they look. Lights and Lamps Lights and lamps can make all the difference. In addition to the overhead lighting in your room, consider having some smaller and dimmer lights for a more relaxed mood. You could have a bedside lamp, a desk lamp, or a standing lamp by your reading chair. You can even hang up some fairy lights for a dreamy effect. If you are short on space, an awesome option is to go for a mounted lamp (although that’s probably not as feasible if you’re only a temporary[...]



Enjoy Your Best Holidays at These 5 Wonderful Places of the World

2017-08-31T14:46:58.903-04:00

When life gives you vacations, turn them into expeditions. That's the best way of giving into the vibe. Today, I’d like to describe some beautiful places in the world. These wonderful places are located around the world, waiting for you to pay a visit!Hallstatt in AustraliaYou might be paying annual homage to Australia but we bet that this one hasn't caught your attention yet. Positioned between Salzburg and Graz, Hallstatt is a home of the early pre-historic mines. Ask no more, it is a UNESCO heritage site down to its cultural richness. Best things always come in small packages and for your testament, you can travel the whole of this town in barely half an hour! The stunning salt caves, ice caves and the Hallstatt Lake will steal your breath.Jackson Hole in WyomingTravel to Jackson Hole, Wyoming to feel a nostalgic adventure in the heart of this American West! It is flanked by this sweeping Teton along with Gros Ventre huge batch ranges and jagged peaks that offer powdery skiing in winters and beautiful hiking in summers. From winter sports to hiking, windsurfing, and paragliding, think of an outdoor activity and you can do it here. During the winters, Jackson Hole can be a wonderland of excellent skiing conditions, skiing snowmobiling, along with ice-skating. Summer in Jackson Hole is great again, because of the hiking, white water rafting, golfing and horseback riding experiences. Sure, you are not going to encounter the glitz along with glam of Aspen or Lake Tahoe, but the beauty and vastness of the Jackson Hole is enchanting. It has caught the eyes of famous Hollywood people like Harrison Honda and the politicians such as the former American Vice Chief Executive, Dick Cheney.New York City in the United StatesOnce you have lived in New York and made it your home, no place else is good enough. – John SteinbeckNew York is a location in the US flaunting many famous buildings like the Empire State Making, the Statue of Liberty, Central Recreation area, the Metropolitan Public of Art and countless more.New York is the city that never sleeps. This city carries a dazzling array of restaurants, hotels, events, and sites that draw tourists worldwide. Besides, you can enjoy the finest things here. Cafes are open until 4 am. The New York cocktail is a must have if paying a visit to this place. Hip-hop runs in the veins of people and you can easily spot cool dudes grooving to the musical.Udaipur in IndiaThe city of lakes and the Venice of the East Udaipur is a big city, identified for history, culture, scenic locations as well as the Rajput-era palaces. It was voted as the best city in the world in 2009 by the Travel and Leisure magazine and is the first South Asian hot spot to win the title. Udaipur boasts of several gleaming lakes against a backdrop of the Aravali hills. Many famous places include the magical Lake Palace, now a magnificent five-star hotel, and the gigantic City Palace on East standard bank of Pichola, displaying epic courtyards along with stunning paintings. The city earned the tag of ‘the most romantic place in the Indian continent’ in 1829 by Colonel James Tod, the East India Company’s first Political Agent in the area. Udaipur is famous for lakes, palaces, forts, gardens, and romantic backdrops. People throughout Udaipur usually prefer wearing bright coloured clothes which is again a visual delight in itself. Colourful festivals and fairs express the cultural prosperity of Udaipur.Biarritz in the Bay of BiscayThe last in this list of beautiful places, Biarritz, is a city on the Bay of Biscay, around the Atlantic coast in the Pyrénées-Atlantiques department in southwest France. It is a [...]



Earth, Water, And Fire: An Elemental Trip Of America

2017-08-30T10:37:53.307-04:00

The US has always felt the harsh and unrelenting force of Mother Nature. Being such a big continent, the variations in landscapes, climates, and ecologies are huge from place to place. Along with this, its size and location make a lot of the country prone to natural disasters. Over the years, this has created some amazing sights throughout America, giving tourists loads to soak in and enjoy. Of course, though, it can be hard to know what you want to do in such a big place. So, to help you out, this post will be going through some of the best elemental activities to enjoy on your stay. EarthCanyons are formed over thousands of years, as the result of moving water eroding the ground around it. In some cases, the quantity and flow of water are great enough to make these landmarks into gaping chasms, often with incredibly unique appearances. One of the most famous examples of a Canyon in the US is the Grand Canyon, in Arizona, which is known for its huge size. Along with this option, though, you also have examples like Antelope Canyon which has beautifully shaped walls, letting the light shine on the floor in nice patterns.Mother nature doesn’t just go down, though. Along with this, some of the biggest natural wonders in the world are going straight upwards. Denali, in Alaska, is the USA’s tallest mountain. With a peak of over 6000m, this landmark is sure to take your breath away, while also giving you the chance to climb one of the hardest mountains in the world. If you’d like something smaller, though, Alaska is home to loads of different mountains, and many of them give you the chance to look right into Canada.WaterSome of the most impressive of mother nature’s feats lie in water, in the form of lakes, rivers, waterfalls, and coastlines, and the US has its fill of all of these. Starting with lakes, you have dozens of options to choose from. In Oregon, you have Crater Lake, a place perfect for scuba divers and those that want to see a unique lake on their trip. Alternatively, you could look at something a little bigger, with Lake Superior in Michigan. Some of the lakes in the US are massive, with water sports and summer fun wherever you go. But, others are colder, giving you the chance to enjoy some of Earth’s hardiest wildlife.Next, it’s onto waterfalls, and possibly the biggest reason to travel inland in the US. From the Niagara Falls and other waterfalls in New York to the options in Yosemite National Park, you have the chance to see loads of gushing water on your stay in America. There are loads of different ways to see this sort of landscape. Some people will use the normal viewing platforms which are provided. But, if you want something a little more exciting, you could also consider the idea of using a helicopter tour to see this part of the US.Being such a large continent, the US has one of the widest ranges of coastline any country has to offer. From sandy beaches, with clear water and beautiful wildlife, to rock pool filled areas, with murky water and rich history, America has all the ocean you could ask for. For those looking for the perfect beaches for relaxation, Florida and California have some of the best options for you. But, for those looking for something different, you could travel to a huge range of places to get your fill. Most of the US is built on the coast, with most of its major cities and towns dotted around the edge. This gives you an excellent opportunity to see this wonderful part of the US.FireFinally, it’s time to think about fire. It may be hard to think of any locations or landmarks in the US which are based on fire or heat, but there are plenty. One of the most famous [...]



Design Tips and Hacks for a Small Living Room

2017-09-01T12:01:59.937-04:00

If you're reading this, I'm guessing you're not exactly living in a luxury Upper East Side mansion and your most expensive furniture item is that funky ottoman you picked up from the Salvation Army shop. Am I close?Well don't despair, even the smallest living space can be made – practically and visually bigger – using a few clever tips and tricks. And that ottoman could play its part!When dealing with a small room, especially a well-used space like a living room, you are always going to have to balance storage and visual space. Getting that right is the key to having a pleasurable living room.Storage, Storage Everywhere When it comes to storage you basically have three options. Put your stuff inside something (a cupboard, cabinet, basket, etc.); put it on top of something (a shelf, a sideboard, a window ledge, etc.) or just leave it lying around for folks to trip over. If you have a tall room, you will usually find a lot of vertical space that could be utilised by using shelves. Corner shelves and floating shelves are popular storage options but why stop there? From fixing wicker baskets to walls to converting stepladders into shelving units, people are finding ultra-creative solutions to a common lifestyle problem. As mentioned in the intro though, its best to balance storage with visual space – so don't drill into every square inch of wall and ceiling.Think Small, Thin and Leggy OK, so you have probably already realised that a huge luxury modern sofa isn't going to work in your itsy bitsy living space, but furniture comes in all sorts of weird shapes and dimensions so take some measurements and then explore your neighbourhood (or the online auction sites) for suitable options. Popular space-savers include miniature stools, which can be tucked out of sight until friends pop over; nested tables and ultra-thin console tables. These can sit almost invisibly behind a couch but provide a useful hard surface for eating at when snack time arrives. Chairs, tables and sideboards on long legs are also useful for giving an overall impression of space.Lighten Up Playing with light is one of the most fun parts about interior design. The strategic placement of mirrors and light sources can transform the look and feel of any space, not least your poky living room. One popular trick is to hang a huge mirror directly opposite a window. This gives the illusion of another window as well as the very real benefit of extra reflected light. Buying furniture made of light-colored woods or painted white can help a small room look bigger and even a transparent coffee table can make a big difference. Replacing heavy curtains with light ones – in weight and color – will create an airy and spacious ambience. Avoid One Trick Ponies By one trick ponies I mean those pieces of furniture that are restricted to one use. When space is at a premium, any chair or table that can double up as a storage unit is worth seriously considering. Some items will be so versatile they can perform three or more functions. Take that ottoman. By removing the upholstery and using some basic carpentry (if its not already hinged) you can turn it into a combined chair/footrest/coffee table/storage unit.Some Extra Ideas You're probably itching to get to work on some serious home re-modelling but before you go, here are some more ideas to inspire you: Place plants in corners or beside bulky furniture items to create a feeling of depth A feature wall is another way of adding depth to a small, bland space Choose a rug with a small pattern. This makes your ro[...]



Amazing African Animal Encounters!

2017-09-01T11:45:09.152-04:00

Want to do something really adventurous, something that will truly take your breath away on your next vacation? Forget the same old beaches and shopping destinations, a trip to Africa could allow you to get up close and personal with some of the most incredible, powerful wild animals on the planet. Africa is a massive continent made up of fifty-four different countries, so as you can imagine there are completely different experiences depending on where you go. From high plateau tablelands with rolling hills and mountains to desert, rain forests, lakes and more. Here are just a few of the ways you can encounter spectacular animals while you’re visiting.Go on SafariOne of the best ways to experience Africa and see some of the most amazing animal species is to go on a guided safari. The tour guides will know exactly where to go in order for you to get the best animal viewing experiences possible. Depending on where in Africa you are visiting, you can expect to see rhinos, elephants, hippos, wildebeest, giraffes and of course the king of the jungle- all in their natural habitat. Book your Africa lion safari today if this is something that interests you- it’s one thing seeing them at a zoo but quite another seeing them in the wild.Go on a Self Driving TourIf you’re a little more experienced or want more freedom where you can go, instead of a guided safari, you have the option of driving yourself. There are 4x4s you can hire for exactly this purpose which will give you ease of access over the wild terrain. You could either plan out a route based on advice from a guide or you could take it as it comes. An awesome option for seeing all kinds of wildlife in Africa. Visit The National ParksThere are a huge number of National Parks in Africa, which of course are all completely different due to the diverse terrain and weather conditions on the continent. But they are an excellent opportunity to appreciate Africa- you can go hiking, bird watching, boating, rock climbing and so much more making it a fun and adventurous trip. And of course, you get to spot some wildlife, from wildebeest, gazelle, and zebra to lions, leopards, cheetahs and jackals and so much more. Go on a Boat TourAs well as traveling by land to see some of Africa’s most spectacular animals, how about traveling by water? You could go in the canoe-like Mokoro boats which are commonly used for viewing game safaris. You could travel by motor boat or even river cruise boat. The benefits of this is you get to access different places which you wouldn’t be able to get to by land. Which could mean some different opportunities to see animals!Are you planning on seeing animals in an African country in the near future? Which of these options most appeals to you?[...]



Out With the Old and In With The New: Beauty Basics to Reconsider

2017-09-01T11:12:18.788-04:00

We’re all guilty of sticking to what we know, especially when it comes to beauty products. Chances are that once you find a brand that you are happy with, you settle with it, adding it to your basket each and every time you head to the supermarket to replenish your supply of beauty products. While you may be comfortable with your choice, it’s important to remember that many companies and brands will change their products’ formulas over time, meaning that over the years you’re actually buying multiple different products that are merely placed in the same packaging that you are used to. This means that you may well end up using a product that isn’t as effective or suited to you as the one you originally chose. It is also paramount that you keep an eye on the ethical guidelines of the companies that you use. Perhaps you’ve opted for a certain brand because of their cruelty-free aspect. While many brands are cruelty-free and do not test on animals when they start out, they may turn to animal testing as their popularity increases in order to sell their products to larger markets such as China, where animal testing is a necessity for any product being sold to the nation’s public. What starts out as a cruelty-free product may well develop into a product that doesn’t conform to your moral or ethical compass. So, here are a few parts of your routine that you might like to switch up!Shampoo and ConditionerYou may think that all shampoos and conditioners are pretty much the same besides their scent, but you’d be surprised at how much the ingredients can vary. Many hair products are packed with chemical nasties that may make your hair appear good in the short term but will prove damaging in the long run. Be particularly wary of products that claim to give your hair a high-shine finish, as these products often coat your hair with particles of plastic based substances in order to reflect light. You should also avoid sulfates and parabens as much as possible. Sulphate, in particular, in a surfactant that removes dirt and oil from hair. While this may sound ideal, it is actually damaging, as its chemical composition strips hair of natural oils, often leaving it dry and straw-like. So, instead of immediately reaching for your usual hair care combo, try out the best sulfate free shampoo and conditioner combinations. You will see the benefits in no time.Bath ProductsWhat’s better than a long hot soak in a bubble bath? Well, a long hot soak in a bath that is completely cruelty-free and composed of all natural ingredients. Many bath bombs, bath salts, and bubble bath liquids contain harsh chemicals that can irritate your skin. Instead, check out the amazing ranges available to you by brands such as Lush. Lush dedicate themselves as a company to creating delicious smelling, magically coloured products that can transform your bath into a mermaid lagoon, intergalactic space landscape, or glittery pink haven. What’s more? They’re completely against animal testing and many of their products are also suitable for vegans. Perfect!Remember, as well as switching up your cleansing products, you should also keep an eye on the makeup, hair styling and hygiene products that you make use of. It’s always best to be well aware of what you’re using and placing on your body.[...]



Places To Travel With a Low Budget

2017-08-21T10:46:16.923-04:00

Everyone likes to travel every once in awhile, and for a lucky few of us it’s a fulltime reality. However, time and money can get us bogged down, and the thought of a holiday ends up being just a dream. After booking a vacation, the cost of amenities can get too much and we have to cut down on those important hints of luxury as well. However, you can still travel when you only have a few bucks in the bank. So if you do have some time on your hands, here are a few suggestions of where to go when you only have a budget to live on for some time away from home. Head Off to ThailandThailand is popular with tourists for good reason. There’s plenty of locations to head off to including jungles and beaches, perfect for exercising your swimming skills or adventurous side. Taking a bite out of the street food is wonderful for the experience as well, with plenty more flavour then you’d get at home. Visit the Phi Phi Islands in affordable and fun speed boat trips. Try your hand at rock climbing, or even get a tattoo from one of the local shops in remembrance of your time away. As Thailand is tourist hotspot number one, sites such as DontPayFull.com have plenty of offers and coupons when it comes to finding places to stay, and even for booking a package holiday itself. Use the internet to your advantage and scour for some deals that will be a godsend for rolling in the little money you have to indulge your adventurous side. Check Out GreeceTourism to Greece has increased by 6.6 percent in 2017 alone. The recent economic crisis in Greece is a reason in itself to head over there on holiday. You’ll be supporting its economy with one of the main ways all countries make money: tourism. Every dollar you spend is a step in the right direction, and there will be more deals when it comes to hotels and eating out. Greece is full of something for everyone, including historical hot spots and beaches. This appeals to the mythical side in all of us, so go and discover the origins of Zeus himself. Similarly, Greece has perfect climate temperatures all year round, so for Christmas this year head down to the beaches. If You Want, You Don’t Even Have To Leave The Country Having a good vacation is all dependent on what you do with it. So when a colleague comes into the office with tales of their trip away, don’t be jealous. Have culturally enriched tales of your own holiday to share. Visit landmarks and shopping districts to take the best photos and find the best deals. You can even roadtrip cheaply with just a good friend and some sleeping bags in the back. Eating out of gas stations and convenience stores is already a staple of student life, so do it in style this year.[...]



AIRBNB TRAVEL X DECÓR SERIES - ROME, ITALY

2017-08-21T10:50:24.172-04:00

In the Airbnb Travel x Decór Series, we sifted through Airbnb's collection of beautiful apartments to bring you this eclectic gallery and potentially a place for you to stay in your next visit.Rome is the perfect starting point for an Italian adventure in the ancient city with a modern buzz. Whether you have 36 hours or just a few days, there is so much to see and do!  Luckily, many of the must see sites like the Trevi Fountain,  the Spanish Steps and the Pantheon are all within walking distance of each other. While the Colosseum and the Forum, are easily accessible by metro. From delicious pizzerias, to espresso bars, to gelato shops and the boutiques of Via Nazionale and Via del Corso. Well Rome is the epicenter of history after all, with enviable architectural, food and lifestyle. 1) $109 / night / entire home - Your host is MatteoLoft at the Colosseum, within walking distance from Domus Aurea park, very well connected, it is 5 minutes from Colosseum Metro. 2) $42 / night / private room - Your host is PatrizioA nice quiet area in the center, with all excellent public transport connection, Metro A station and Porta Maggiore, where it’s possible to take several trams to go to Termini, Vaticano, Colosseum and other peripheral areas are nearby. View of Basilica Santa Croce, Basilica San Giovanni and Scala Santa.3) $52 / night / private room - Your host is ValeriaLocated right in the heart of Rome’s historical center, refined sunny double room in a cozy apartment, with air conditioning, bathroom shared with only another room, shared kitchen. The Colosseum and Domus Area are only 1 km away, as for the Baths of Caracalla and Circus Massimo. The apartment is excellently connected by subway (line A) and main bus lines and it's located in one of the best neighborhoods of Rome with bars, restaurants, shops and green areas.4) $46 / night / private room - Your host is DamianoGarbatella was built in an area marked by hills and meadows crossed by Via delle Sette Chiese. Via delle Sette Chiese provided a link for the pilgrims to travel between San Paolo fuori le mura and San Sebastiano. It was organized in blocks, called Italian Lotto, by multiple architects over a period of about 20 years. Not far away is the ancient Via Appia with Roman archeological sites such as the catacombs and Tomba di Cecilia Metella. A bike path connects the area to the city center (15 minutes).5) $109 / night / entire home - Your host is BenedettaThis is a special loft suspended between sky, roofs and typical balloons in the heart of the only San Lorenzo.6) $121 / night / entire home - Your host is LuciaCozy, small, clean, beautiful! A few steps from the Colosseum and the main monuments. Located in a beautiful street full of shops, cafes, restaurants. Just restored with a philosophy of retrieval of ancient materials.7) $32 / night / private room - Your host is Barbara Pigneto is perhaps "up and coming" with many bars and restaurants, and easy to reach Termini or La Sapienza by tram. San Lorenzo is also very nearby and offers a lively nightlife full of students and young people, the Ex Dogana centro sociale which often hosts top international musicians and DJs, and other attractions.8) $39 / night / private room - Your host is DaniloSpacious home with 3 bedrooms, terrace, kitchen with sofa bed, a bathroom, in one of the most popular districts of Rome: San Lorenzo.[...]



Reverse Dryness & Get Back Your Dewy Skin

2017-08-30T10:36:10.823-04:00

Have you suddenly noticed dry, flaky patches on your once beautiful skin? Fear not! There are ways you can reverse this dryness and get back your dewy, glowing skin. Although changes in skin type can be down to many factors and happen to us at any time, you can do the following things to help remedy it:Avoid Hot Baths Hot baths tend to suck much of the moisture out of skin, so they could be the reason that your skin no longer feels soft and smooth. The occasional hot bath shouldn’t hurt, but if you’re having them a lot of the time, you should definitely cut back and see if this helps with your issue. Take cooler showers in place of hot baths and you’ll save your skin, as well as money on your water bill! Avoid Products Laden With Harsh ChemicalsCheck out the labels on products you’re using and figure out if they could be too harsh for your skin. Using products filled with chemicals can be harmful to skin in the long term. They can be cheaper, but spending a little more makes sense for your health. You don’t want your skin to soak up dangerous chemicals every day! Go For Organic/Natural SkincareTaking care of your skin with organic skincare is something you should do everyday. You can even make your own if you like! There are lots of moisturizers and face masks you can make with natural products that could work wonders. Coconut oil is an amazing thing to have in your home at all times, as it can be used for numerous things, as well as a cleanser/moisturizer for your face and body. Some people swear by it! Use A High Quality RazorIf you’re using a low quality razor, chances are you have many nicks and scrapes from shaving. For the smoothest, softest skin, you need to use a good razor, similar to one from 99centrazor.com/. It isn’t always about the razor either. By using a quality shaving cream, you can also get better results and avoid dry patches and other problems. Moisturize At Least Once A Day You should moisturize your body and face at least once a day. Using other skincare methods alongside this will enhance the results, so consider cleansing, toning, and sometimes exfoliating your skin. Using a serum can help penetrate the deeper layers of skin that may not be getting any moisture. You should moisturize after a bath or shower for body, and after cleansing for face. Usually this is upon waking and before going to bed. See A Dermatologist If all else fails, seeing a dermatologist could be an option. They will be able to take a deeper look at your skin and come up with a plan/recommend products that will work best for you. Bear in mind it’s usually better to try natural remedies than taking tablets and medication to clear up problem skin! Do you have any go-to tips for soft, dewy skin? Leave them below![...]



Sun-Kissed, Not Sun Burnt

2017-08-14T10:33:54.589-04:00

We all want that perfect sun-kissed glow at the end of the summer, but it can often be a tough balancing act between getting tanned and getting burnt. Your skin care routine during the summer will be vastly different to your usual routine, because your skin is encountering some very different elements. To protect your skin, while still letting it experience the sun, here are a few tips to incorporate into your skin care regime. Use sunscreen, not sunblockIt’s been hammered into us since childhood that we should not spend hours in the sun without protection. After all, we all remember when our mothers wouldn’t let us run rampant on the beach until we had been slathered with sun lotion? That said, you have to make sure you use the correct sort of protection. There are two types of sun lotion designed to protect your skin from harmful UV rays. Sunblock is a physical kind of lotion, containing both organic and non-organic ingredients that sit on top of the skin acting as a barrier between your skin and damaging UV rays by reflecting or scattering the light. Sunscreen is a chemical lotion that penetrates the skin and filters the sun's UV rays. Essentially, it keeps most rays out, but lets some in, which means that your skin can absorb the vitamin D emitted by the sun. Since your body still needs to absorb vitamin D for health reasons, sunscreen is the best option for your beach days. A minimum SPF of 30 is recommended and must be applied 20-30 minutes before you head out into the sun. If you are going swimming, then keep applying as and when it gets washed out.Follow some basic sun safety rulesNothing provides better protection against sunburn than some basic sun safety rules. In addition to wearing sunscreen whenever you go out - and topping it up throughout the day - you should also avoid tanning between 10 AM and 4 PM when the sun is strongest, you should wear a hat and sunglasses if you need to go out, and you should always stay hydrated. Not only is drinking water good for your body during a heat wave, water has amazing benefits for your skin that should not be undervalued. Keep up a good skin care routineIf you want your tan to look flawless, you need to take good care of your skin before, during, and after spending time in the sun. During the summer, you need skin care routine that keeps your skin clean, hydrated, and free of grime. You might find, you’re more prone to breakouts in the summer because the sweat can clog your pores if you don’t clean your face on a regular basis. You should also use an effective moisturizer to prevent your skin from drying out. Any moisturizer containing hyaluronic acid will have incredible benefits for your skin; hyaluronic acid is a natural substance in skin that improves skin hydration, stimulates production of collagen in skin, works as an antioxidant and free radical scavenger, and maintains skin elasticity. It doubles as a hydrating moisturizer, and anti-ageing agent. Also, make sure you seek shade during peak sunlight hours, and apply an aftersun lotion after you’ve been out all day. Aftersun lotion can replenish lost moisture in the skin, and soothe the heat that is still radiating from it. Ideally, use an aloe vera based lotion. Aloe vera can replenish the moisture on the skin in small doses. Mind what you eatWhen the weather is particularly hot the last thing we want to do is eat heavy foods that make us feel sluggish. Unknowingly, you have been doing your skin a [...]



Style Upgrade Your Home with Decorative Glass Doors

2017-08-15T14:25:02.309-04:00

Your home’s entrance door is one of the first things that guests and passersby see. In most cases, it can even be used as an interesting conversation piece. If you’re tired of being labelled as “plain and boring” by your gossipy neighbors, then perhaps it is high time you give your home an upgrade. You don’t have to do anything too drastic, just yet. In most cases, installing a decorative glass door is enough to turn heads and give your home a makeover.What are your Decorative Glass Door Options?When you go online, you will find various types of decorative glass doors. Every style offers a unique touch to your home and serves a different purpose.Stained Glass DoorsThis is the type of decorative glass you commonly see in churches and museums. Also known as art glass, stained glass can also be used for homes, adding to the aesthetic appeal of the house. No matter what design you choose, stained glass door is absolutely beautiful and adds an artistic touch to your home. It brings together color and elegance, adding more life to your boring home’s exterior.Aside from that, stained glass decorative doors are versatile. You will find a wide selection of design options. So you can choose the one that is suitable for the look of your home. It is advisable to use this as an accent piece on your front door.Etched Glass DoorsEtched glass doors are becoming more and more popular these days because of the variety it offers. Also known as carved glass, doors with glass etchings offer endless design options. So, you are sure to find something that is suitable to the style of your home.When you run your fingers over the glass etching, you will feel the carvings of the design. If this is something that you would not fancy, then other decorative glass door options might be more suitable for you.Frosted Glass DoorsClear glass is the classic design option for an entry door. However, if you are after privacy, then the aforementioned option is not for you. The ideal decorative door for you is one with frosted or opaque glass.What frosted glass does is blur the other side so your pesky neighbors would quit peeking into your home. At the same time, you can still let sunlight shine through your door. If you do not fancy the way frosted glass looks, you can choose from other opaque glass design options that will still add class and elegance to your entry door.Why Opt for Decorative Glass DoorsYou might have heard of the term “curb appeal”, but why does it matter? What is all the fuss about? Is it just a topic that your neighbors throw around carelessly? Well, if you’re planning to sell your home in the future, you might have to review your house’s curb appeal. You see, the more curb appeal your house has, the higher its selling value is.Now, your front door contributes greatly to your home’s curb appeal. As we’ve previously mentioned, it is the first thing that visitors see. There are many ways you can increase your entry door’s curb appeal and installing a decorative glass door is one of them. Take a look at some of the benefits you can get from having a decorative glass entry door.You can Customize the DesignDo you want to express your artistic side through your front door? If so, then stained glass would be ideal for you. Not a fan of color, but still wants an intricate design? Well, glass etching would be your best choice. Are you concerned about your privacy? The ideal solution would be to opt [...]



4 Easy Ways To Clear Up Your Skin

2017-08-15T13:39:03.781-04:00

Skincare is difficult and at times, confusing.. The average person can go an entire lifetime without ever figuring out how to truly take care of the body’s largest organ. The Internet doesn’t make things, particularly easier either--there’s simply too much information out there for the average Joe or Jane to make sense of. And not to mention a lot of that information happens to be false or, at the very least, exaggerated.Consider these four simple and basic rules of skincare to keep your complexion clear and youthful:1. Moisturizer is the Skin’s Best FriendOne of the most common conditions that the average person could suffer from is dry skin. All kinds of nasty and highly visible symptoms can arise from a failure to keep the skin nice and moisturized --itching, flaking, and when things get really bad, even bleeding.Moisturizer is common, usually cheap, and absolutely invaluable in maintaining passably healthy skin. For those who want to go the extra mile, brands like Well Within Beauty provide products that come packed with added value: skin protection, antioxidants, and a host of compounds that leave skin even healthier than before.2. Gentle TouchApplying excessive pressure to sensitive parts of your body, such as the eyes and temples can lead to the early development of unsightly wrinkles. Using a gentle touch comes highly recommended across the cosmetic profession, and is by far the cheapest way to keep your face clean and youthful.For those who can’t help but touch their faces, investing in things like stress balls and fidget toys can help break the nasty habit. The bottom line here is discipline: take corrective steps when you catch yourself doing these or any other unhealthy habits.3. Adopt a Healthy PerspectiveOn the subject of erasing bad habits, it’s also well-advised to maintain good ones. Half the battle in taking care of any part of your body is in making sure your outlook on life is one that includes health as a priority. This means eating well, sleeping on time, and keeping up a generally healthy lifestyle.You’ll find that keeping proper eating habits does wonders for the complexion, drinking the right amount of water can prevent skin problems as well as keep your kidneys healthy, and eight hours of sleep a night can leave you looking refreshed at zero cost.4. Bring in the ProfessionalsWhen all else fails, consulting experts in the fields of dermatology and nutrition is your safest, simplest bet towards looking and feeling at your best. Consultation doesn’t always come at a hefty price, and you’ll end up avoiding the cost of suboptimal skincare routines and wasteful products for the cost of a session.Keep an open mind, but make sure to be critical of their advice and recommendations for the kinds of products you should invest in --there might be more reliable products out there, and the general principle of what you’re after is a great enough take-away from a session.Ordinary people rarely find the time to devote to daily maintenance routines. With luck, you can find a regimen that works best for you, as well as the motivation to keep it up --after all, if you aren’t going to take care of your complexion, who will?[...]