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If you’ve added one or two extra subscriptions to your monthly outgoings during lockdown, you’re probably not the only one. The average Brit is now spending £55 a month on subscriptions such as Netflix, Spotify and Amazon Prime, according to new research.This adds up to £670 over the course of year if these subscriptions are kept active for a full 12 months.More than half (57%) of Brits now have three or more monthly subscriptions and three-quarters have at least one, research by TopCashBack.co.uk found. Perhaps unsurprisingly given that fewer millennials are watching linear TV, the most popular monthly subscription is for TV streaming services such as Netflix, BritBox and Disney+. The average spend on these comes in at £14.09 a month. The average spend on product delivery services such as Amazon Prime comes in at £12.80 – considerably less than the average spend on fitness subscriptions (£32.06) and recipe boxes (£28.72).Nearly one in five Brits (18%) now has a recipe box subscription – which is exactly double the number (9%) who had one in 2019. The data was compiled back in April, so this increase could reflect the fact that more of us have got into cooking during lockdown.Adam Bullock of TopCashBack.co.uk noted that “the majority of people [polled] feel they are getting value for money from their subscriptions”. However, in response to the fact that 40% of people have forgotten to cancel a free trial to a subcription service, he added more cautiously: “While people are getting use out of them at the moment, we would encourage those taking out new contracts or services to be extra vigilant about when trials end, and consider if they are going to need or use it once self-isolation comes to an end.”We recently asked women all over the UK how their spending and saving habits have changed for the better during lockdown.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?How To Live On The CheapThe Money Habit We Want To Keep After LockdownMoney Diary: A Civil Servant In Durham On 24k
Sitting outside the Hotel du Commerce this morning in the little hamlet of Bar-Sur-Seine, we sipped café and munched croissants in morning sunshine. I really did wonder what all the fuss was about.
Chrissy Teigen has spoken about how “terrified” she felt on discovering she was pregnant after she underwent breast surgery.In May this year, Teigen revealed she was having her breast implants removed.
Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion’s “WAP” is an instant classic collaboration with a supremely sensual and sex-positive video that’s already broken a YouTube record.It’s been hailed as “the epitome of female empowerment”, a “loud articulation of female desire for sex” and a team-up “for the freaks, by the freaks”.It’s prompted a lot of different conversations, too. Cardi B has already defended her decision to cast Kylie Jenner in the video and responded to criticism from Tiger King‘s Carole Baskin about the use of animals in the clip. However, in a not-so-hot take that absolutely no one asked for, Russell Brand has posted his own reaction video in which he discusses the “emergent polemic around the use of sexual imagery and female potency” in “WAP”.“Is it a feminist masterpiece,” Brand asks in the YouTube listing, “or is it just another version of what’s always existed in terms of the objectification and commodification of the self?”The 17-minute reaction video is so verbacious and meandering that it even includes a mention of highly controversial former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. In his reaction video, Brand says that he “wouldn’t be so reductive and simplistic to say that women celebrating their bodies using an aesthetic that’s conventionally been associated with the male gaze means it’s impossible that these tools could be used as a vehicle for liberation”.However, he then adds: “But I am saying that in a sense it’s still the same metric, it’s still the same aesthetic, it’s still the same values, it’s still the same ideals. It’s still ultimately a sort of capitalist objectification and commodification of, in this case, the female.”After insisting he’s not saying that Cardi B and Megan Thee Stallion “aren’t powerful auteurs and powerful creators”, Brand adds: “I’m saying that we ought to be aspiring to an entirely different set of values – not who has the power within an established set of values.”On Twitter, people are accusing Brand of “mansplaining” feminism and pointing out that he’s probably not the best equipped person to discuss issues surrounding feminism and the sexual agency of Black women.Deborah Frances-White, host of the Guilty Feminist podcast, wrote: “I really don’t want to be taught feminism by Russell Brand. But I look forward to Louis CK’s thoughts on why Beyoncé is getting it all wrong.”Check out a selection of reactions below.> I really don’t want to be taught feminism by Russell Brand. But I look forward to Louis CK’s thoughts on why Beyoncé is getting it all wrong. https://t.co/is7aPEiyhZ> > — DeborahFrances-White (@DeborahFW) August 15, 2020> Lessons in feminism from a man who used to prank call rape help lines as part of his stand up act. Thanks Russell Brand, we have so much to learn from you> > — Claudia Connell (@Claudiacc) August 15, 2020> Russell brand comparing a fucking music video to thatcher’s time as prime minister… are you fucking kidding me 😂😂 white men really need to stay out of Black women’s business. I’m going back to bed 😪> > — Lola🕊 BLM (@whinemummy) August 15, 2020> I see Russell Brand is comparing the miners strike and the poll tax to women expressing their sexuality. > > Thanks for mansplaining mate.> > — Ann Coates (@setoacnna) August 15, 2020> So, Russell Brand came online with his torn singlet and tiddies exposed to throw as many big words into as few sentences as possible just so he could seem wise and stay relevant while undermining Black Women? But just looked far more ridiculous in the process? > > Love to see it.> > — Kemi (@_KingKemi) August 15, 2020> Russell Brand mentioning the WAP video in the same sentence as Margaret Thatcher was definitely not in my cards for 2020> > — YT: Develop with Amina 👩🏽💻🌱 (@yeahshewrites) August 15, 2020Brand’s reaction video has also attracted some positive comments. “Russell Brand is not ‘mansplaining feminism’, he’s having a nuanced discussion about a complex topic and… he’s right,” one user wrote.Brand previously attracted criticism on Twitter after he revealed that he had never looked after his two young daughters – then aged six months and two years old – for a 24-hour period without help from his wife, Laura Gallacher.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?Cardi B Defends Kylie Jenner In "WAP" Music VideoMegan Thee Stallion Has Some Serious Makeup Skills
Are we all getting a little loose in the brain thanks to this lockdown business? One minute we can’t visit the local boozer, the next everybody is off to Heathrow, enduring misery and contagion in order to drink sweet alcoholic goo at a beach bar in Magaluf.
Once upon a time, my ready-to-go, sling-on travel bag used to hold a passport, a credit card, a toothbrush and a spare pair of knickers. If I forgot everything else it didn’t really matter.
When I heard that Boris Johnson had introduced a two-week quarantine period for those returning from France, I was pleased. When Macron followed suit and reciprocated, I was overjoyed.
As we approach the 100th anniversary of the 19th amendment — a day that celebrates the right for white women to vote — President Donald Trump continues his self-congratulatory campaign, this time with a declaration about how much he supports women in the United States. In a tweet on Friday, Trump boldly claimed that he’s done more for women than any other president in history. “I have done more for WOMEN than just about any President in HISTORY! As we celebrate the 100th Anniversary of women’s voting rights, we should build a BEAUTIFUL STATUE in Washington D.C. to honour the many brave women who made this possible for our GREAT COUNTRY,” Trump tweeted. Trump is now suggesting that the United States erect one single statue in honour of all women (perhaps a 50 foot tall sculpture of Ivanka?). But since Trump is Trump, he doubled down on this by asking for Congress’ help. In a follow-up tweet, Trump said, “Congress should send me H.R.473 ASAP and make this happen! It will INSPIRE all women to continue being bold and brave in achieving their DREAMS!” Infused with inherent sexism implying women must be “bold and brave,” the tweets immediately garnered backlash considering Trump’s track record speaking about women and rolling back women’s rights over the duration of his presidency, and long before it. Shannon Coulter, co-founder of the GrabYourWallet movement, simply responded with a screenshot of the transcript of his Access Hollywood video where he talks about kissing women without consent. Many others replied by calling him a rapist and a misogynist, quoting lewd things he’s said about women, and citing the sexual assault allegations against him. Writer E. Jean Carroll, who’s one of the many women who has accused Trump of sexual assault, weighed in, too, tweeting, “Sir, if we build STATUES to all the women you’ve ATTACKED, we’d run out of public parks to put them in!”> You misspelled “I have attacked and sexually assaulted more WOMEN than just about any President in HISTORY!” > > There. Fixed it for you.> > — BrooklynDad_Defiant! (@mmpadellan) August 14, 2020> Trump has raped more women than any President in HISTORY. > > Trump has peed on more women than any President in HISTORY. > > Trump has cheated on more wives than any President in HISTORY.> > — Mrs. Krassenstein (@HKrassenstein) August 14, 2020> Donald Trump is tweeting about doing more for women than any president in history while E. Jean Carroll is currently suing him for rape.> > — Jason Overstreet (@JasonOverstreet) August 14, 2020Despite what Trump thinks about Trump, he is far from an arbiter of women’s rights. Even before he was elected, Trump became known for his “grab ‘em by the pussy” video, and during his 2016 campaign, he turned “nasty woman” into a slogan against Hillary Clinton. Since he’s been in office, he’s continued to erode women’s rights not in just the language he uses but also in action. During his time as president, he’s pushed to defund Planned Parenthood and severely damaged women’s healthcare, tried to ban abortion and impose a Global Gag Rule against safe abortion. And, he even disbanded the White House Council on Women and Girls. Most of this was just in the first year of his presidency. In addition to all of this, he’s been accused of sexual assault by more than 21 women, and continues to use derogatory language about women often. And as recently as this last month, he signed an executive order that will prevent houseless transgender women from being admitted to shelters. With this kind of history, it’s unclear what Trump thinks doing things for women even means. While the list of attacks on women could go on forever, perhaps just the right size statue is surely enough to absolve him of all transgressions past, present, and future. Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?Michael Cohen Makes Bold Accusations Against TrumpTrump Admits To Sabotaging Mail-In VotingSarah Cooper Is Getting Her Own Netflix Special
I discovered an amazing new activity during isolation times: working out. I dug my partner’s dusty weights from the bowels of the hall closet and started high-kneeing around the apartment every other day.Yes, I’d heard of this pastime before. I knew, theoretically, that everyone had deltoids, for example, and that those deltoids should probably be moved around once in a while. I just didn’t think this concept applied to me. I prefer yoga to gym life. (I’m a Taurus, I need exercise that lets me have a little judgment-free nap in the middle of it. I walk a lot, too.) Also, most gyms are too steeped in binary toxicity for my non-binary ass to feel happy or comfortable there, and the messaging around fitness too exclusive. Beyond that, the idea of “fitness” always felt preachy, moral, like a means to somebody else’s end — a way to mould myself into a product. Overall, at odds with my feminism.But during quarantine, with my yoga studio closed, being forced to exercise at home made me really tune in to what my body needed. Like probably most people, I was feeling a lot of anxiety, and had excess energy from being cooped up so much. For me, this anxiety can manifest as anger, and it gets unpleasant. I also have chronic pain in my neck and shoulders from hunching over a laptop in a posture quite unlike that which most homo sapiens are built to exhibit. So I started lifting weights for the first time ever (stronger muscles = less joint pain), and running; and I started to see exercise as a treatment, not a prescription to be suffered through. Now, as gyms open back up across Canada, I’m actually considering going. I live in New Brunswick, where there are only six active cases in the province. The gym doesn’t look like such a wild idea.Still, I have reservations.Fitness culture is dominated by that vapid, protein powder-fuelled rush to get swole for no reason and unhealthy pressure to lose weight. Sad protein bars reign. At the gym, the uglier parts of the gender binary are in full force: men go to bulk up, women go to get smaller. Of course this doesn’t apply to all men and women, and bulking up or slimming down can be perfectly fine; plenty of people have a healthy relationship with working out. I don’t, though. I’ve felt left out of fitness since I was a kid — I was clumsy and dainty and particular and hated getting dirty, or having dodgeballs lobbed at my bespectacled face.> Somewhere along the line, I clearly failed to separate the toxicity of gyms from the idea of exercise in general. Growing up labelled as a girl, I was, frankly, fat phobic, and felt compelled to lose weight. I felt the machines and weights were too dominated by grunting men to learn how to use them: getting strong, somehow, was not for me. Exercise was a set of deliberate acts I needed to perfect in order to sculpt and shave all of the fat off of particular parts of my body. I had internalised the message that I had to try to erase myself to be worthy. Overall, the gym was a depressing place, especially for a closeted gender non-conforming cheese eater.Somewhere along the line, I clearly failed to separate the toxicity of gyms from the idea of exercise in general. I used to yearn to hit people who yapped about the joys of vigorous exercise over the head with a frying pan. But now, I’m clearly one of those assholes, because exercise provides me the support I need.Yes, I was able to make these body discoveries due to extended period of peace and quiet of these past few months, but it’s also thanks mostly to fat, non-binary, and trans icons that I’ve been able to develop a healthier attitude toward my body and working out — see Lizzo, Lindy West, Janelle Monáe, Jonathan Van Ness, and Ruby Rose. Even before quarantine and its accompanying revelations, coming out as enby led to my ability to accept my body as it is, and the idea that it’s allowed to have substance. It took a true realisation of my identity for the body posi lessons I’ve learned to start to apply not just to others around me, but to me personally. Understanding the fact that there is no blueprint for how a non-binary body “should” look drove home the point that there is no way any body should look. That thought has set me free. I finally realise I have every right to build muscle, and to eat cookies when I want to. I don’t want to get smaller. I want to gain a little if anything. I think my fat is cute. I’d like to keep it and get stronger at the same time.When I do go to the gym, I will take this newfound power of mine with me and lift some weights. Away from the Muscle Milk guzzlers.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?Merriam-Webster’s Word Of The Year Is They7 Pieces Of Equipment Every Trainer Uses At HomeYour $5 Virtual Workout Isn't Saving Gym Owners
Have you found that any discussion of holiday plans this summer is accompanied by an eerie sense of deja-vu? All the trips I hear about are thoroughly retro affairs. Some belong squarely in the 1980s, like a cheap-and-cheerful family camping trip to Brittany by ferry, my first taste of European travel as a child, when even a baguette seemed thrillingly sophisticated (they’d only just started selling these strange tubular loaves at our local Tesco). Other plans are all a bit 1920s Jazz Age, like decamping en masse to a fancy hotel on the French riviera, the sort of vacation F Scott Fitzgerald considered passe and worth lampooning by the time Tender Is The Night was published in 1934. A travel editor friend who typically found reviewing shiny new Aman spas in exotic spots like Bhutan, is instead driving with her family to Lake Constance in Germany, to stay at a holiday home owned by relatives, much as Swiss, English, Austrian and German aristocrats did in the 18th and 19th centuries. As a lover of all things vintage – fashion, wine, my parents – this sudden revival of retro holidays holds a lot of charm for me. This summer, travellers have been liberated from our thirst for ‘newness’ – new hotels, new destinations, new transport routes – and we’ve fallen back, gratefully, on the old tried-and-tested classics. We’re rekindling our relationship with our closest European neighbours, like France, Germany, Portugal and Italy. We’ve rediscovered ferry routes, and no-fly driving holidays. British holidaymakers have always been fond of a glampsite – and arguably we do glamping better than any other nation on the planet – but travel this summer is an even more nature-oriented affair, with spaced-out individual lodges, cabins and yurts appearing infinitely more appealing than jam-packed resorts and busy cities. As well as our holiday plans being significantly simpler, they’re also more intimate affairs, with a greater focus on good company, family and friends. I’ve never heard so many people gushing about the other family they’re decamping to a villa in Tuscany with, or enthusing about taking their parents to Normandy. During the long weeks of lockdown, I could virtually hear the clunking of machinery in my soul, as my priorities reshuffled and rearranged themselves. Suddenly I saw who my most precious friends were: the funny, the kind, the wise ones. I realised that – other than human connection – nature was my greatest treasure, and it was the beach here in my hometown of Margate that would see me through the strict days of lockdown, and keep me sane when the world felt crazy. The pandemic changed my tastes in culture, with so many books, TV shows, films and albums seeming hopelessly irrelevant or unbearably depressing. Almost overnight, I stopped being remotely attracted to ‘misunderstood artist’ types, and the only men I was interested in were the ones working the wards, producing or delivering food, or building chicken coops in their gardens. I’m sure I’m not alone in observing how much my tastes have changed during lockdown – and so we shouldn’t be surprised that our travel tastes have similarly turned radically retro. Some of this, of course, is down to sheer practicality; travel insurance, quarantine regulations, flight routes. But during these still-strange days, we’re all finding comfort in the familiar, the classics. And, perhaps, there’s an acceptance that the old way of travelling might actually have been better – for travellers, for destinations, and for the planet. This summer, when friends tell me about their travel plans, there are no strange, unfamiliar place names that I need to pretend to recognise, because Todos Santos is apparently the “New Tulum”. Nobody is namedropping glossy, newly opened boutique hotels, tutting if I don’t already follow them on Instagram. There is no talk of “bucket-list” destination events like Burning Man festival in Nevada, or New Orleans Jazz Festival, requiring a dutiful display of regret at having not snagged a ticket myself. No, this year, the pressure is well and truly off holidays. They don’t need to be anything other than a perfectly pleasant way to spend a few days, and frankly, even Devon sounds stupendously exotic to lockdown-wearied Londoners. I suspect most British holidaymakers have accepted that the travel landscape is going to look fairly different for the next few months. But this doesn’t need to be a bleak picture. This is the time to rediscover forgotten classic destinations and itineraries, to celebrate the tourism destinations we have on our doorstep. If you can just apply a sepia tint to the future, a retro Instagram filter, the future of travel looks pretty charming. Because it looks rather like the past.
Over the past six months, it's likely that your obsession with homeware has gone from mildly problematic to a full-blown condition. For those of you who have spent the pandemic WFH, staring at your lacklustre rented walls all day has likely inspired at the very least a following spree of home interiors accounts on Instagram and, at the worst, a shopping spree that shows no sign of coming to an end. Perhaps you've been indulging in a spot of cottagecore, sprucing up the place with a collection of dried flowers or investing in some plant pots for that teeny outdoor space that likes to call itself a garden. One trend that's been popping off on Instagram of late is rattan furniture. Rattan is a climbing vine which grows mainly in southeast Asia and has been used for centuries to weave everything from baskets to clothes to furniture. While it can be used to create many different patterns, it's really the webbing style that's caught the eye of interiors queens of the moment. To help you add some rattan to your place, we've rounded up a collection of our favourite pieces for you to pick from.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?How To Decorate Your Walls Without NailsWhere To Buy Prints Online For Your WallsThe Best Homeware Shops On The Internet
Welcome to Money Diaries, where we're tackling what might be the last taboo facing modern working women: money. We're asking a cross-section of women how they spend their hard-earned money during a seven-day period – and we're tracking every last penny. This week: "I’m a 26-year-old civil servant living in Durham with my partner and our dog. We’re both from Durham and moved away for university before moving back together five years ago. I loved Leeds, where I studied for my undergraduate degree, but felt like living in a bigger city just wasn’t for me. When we moved back I did a master's degree over two years at Newcastle University then fell into working at my current department as a bit of a stopgap in 2018. It turned into more of a career than I expected and after a recent promotion I’m planning to stay put for a while yet! The cost of living here really cemented us wanting to move back: I feel very lucky to have been in a position to buy a house with relatively low stress. I used to live paycheque to paycheque and often relied on my overdraft to keep me going each month, however having such a small mortgage puts me in the strongest financial position I’ve ever been in, meaning I can now save for big things and spend on fun things with much less guilt. My salary feels like a lot, which I’m very grateful for. I’ve been really lucky through COVID-19 and have been working a mixture of in the office and at home so my pay hasn’t been affected. I was due to get married to my partner this August but we postponed by a full year to make sure we can have the celebration we want. It’s a shame but for the best." Industry: Civil service Age: 26 Location: Durham Salary: £24,108 Paycheque amount: £1,580 after deductions Number of housemates: Two: my partner and our dog Monthly Expenses Housing costs and utilities: My share of the mortgage is around £125, however my partner and I put £500 a month each into our joint account. This covers the mortgage, utilities, council tax, weekly grocery shops, various insurances (life, home, breakdown and pet), entertainment subscriptions (Netflix, Disney+, English Heritage etc) and most expenses for our dog. Loan payments: £100 a month to pay off various student overdrafts and credit cards. I recently consolidated all of my small debts into one loan and it's made a huge difference as it comes out on payday so I don't even notice it. Transportation: £60 a month for parking at work, split with my partner as we work in the same office. We usually spend around the same on petrol but this has been nearer £30 a month since lockdown. No other monthly payments for transportation since we bought our little used car outright and also paid our insurance and tax upfront this year. Phone bill: £23 a month. Savings? I put away between £200 and £600 depending on the month. I use an app that calculates how much I can afford to save but tend to top this up regularly. I currently have around £3,500 in savings across various accounts. Most of this is allocated to our wedding, which has been moved back a year due to COVID-19.Like what you see? How about some more R29 goodness, right here?Money Diary: 22-Year-Old On 26k, Flying To JerseyMoney Diary: A Communications Assistant In GlasgowMoney Diary: A 29-Year-Old Radiologist On 65k