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The brilliant dryer hack that will put an end to ironing clothes forever

<div class="replay"> <div class="reply_body body linkify"> <div class="reply_body"> <div class="body_text "> <p>Ironing is high up on the list of most dreaded chores, but if you’re feeling lazy and need crease-free clothes in a snap, then you’ll be pleased to hear that there’s a trick that does exactly that.</p> <p>And the best part? It’s free.</p> <p>After putting your clothes in the dryer, place two or three ice cubes along with them and then raise the setting to the highest heat for a few minutes. Apparently, the hack should make your clothes look like they’ve been freshly steamed.</p> <p>And it works, as multiple people have tested out the trick and shared their results online.</p> <p>You may be trying to figure out the correlation between ice cubes and smooth clothes, and it’s simply because once the ice is melted, the heat from the dryer transforms the water into steam.</p> <p>So, not only are you getting dry, clean clothes, but now they’ve been pressed for you once they come out.</p> <p>However, there are some things to consider. It is advised by those who have tested the hack to not overfill the dryer if adding ice cubes, so a few shirts and trousers should be enough for one load.</p> <p>Once the trick gained traction online, many others came out with their own secrets to avoid ironing, such as hanging your clothes as soon as they’re out of the dryer.</p> <p>And also using a hairdryer as a steamer. Others say running a damp towel over dry clothes can help with crinkling.</p> <p>Or you might take to your kitchen cabinets, as experts believe that vinegar is the secret to soft linen, towels and bedding.</p> <p>“Use vinegar instead of fabric softener. Works better, and no, it doesn’t smell,” said one social media user after a woman asked for advice on how to keep her towels feeling brand new.</p> <p>Do you have any hacks to avoid ironing that you swear by? Let us know in the comments below.</p> </div> </div> </div> </div>

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Prince Charles and Camilla's extreme laundry ritual leaves royal fans baffled

<p>For most people, ironing is a dreaded chore that, if possible, would be avoided at all costs. But no one has it as hard as the staff members who work for the royal family.</p> <p>While the British royals are known to live the high life, it has recently been revealed that a single bed sheet for members of the family must be ironed for at least one hour as there cannot be a single crease visible and people are baffled at the revelation.</p> <p><em>Queen of the World</em> – the new documentary that shows an exclusive preview into the lives of the royal family – featured one segment that showed just how much effort was needed when Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, stayed in Canada at Rideau Hall in Ottawa.</p> <p>To ensure the couple have a comfortable experience, their bed linen must be crease free and immaculate.</p> <p>“There are special sheets that are used for members of the royal family and they’re kept aside and brought out on only those special occasions when they’re here,” said Christine MacIntyre, the master of the household.</p> <p>“It takes over an hour to iron one sheet … After a long day of travelling there’s nothing better than getting into a bed that doesn’t feel like a hotel bed,” she says.</p> <p>“And that’s what you’re trying to do, is to make it feel like they’re in their own bedroom and they are.”</p> <p>And it isn’t the responsibility of one person to iron out each crease, as there are two people working together to ensure the sheet is smooth.</p> <p>After the segment aired, viewers took to social media to air their opinions on the protocol.</p> <p>“Over an hour to iron a bed sheet?! Bet the Royals wouldn’t even notice if it didn’t happen. #QueenoftheWorld,” one viewer wrote.</p> <p>“Stick [it] in the tumble dryer. It’ll be fine,” another said.</p> <p>Do you think ironing one sheet for an hour is excessive? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

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Laundry tips to live by

<p>Your laundry should be as minimal, clean and organised as possible. Yes, I know it’s a drag of a room and no one wants to be in there for long, but there are ways to make the laundry a more hospitable space. Fill large glass jars with bulk items like buttons, threads, pegs and twine and put them on display for a stylish touch. It’s so easy to recreate this look and add a little style to an otherwise drab space.</p> <p><strong>LAUNDRY TIPS TO LIVE BY:</strong></p> <ul> <li>Keep your laundry as minimal as possible, with no fuss and no mess.</li> <li>Use a collection of baskets to separate colours, dry-cleanable items, ironing etc.</li> </ul> <p style="text-align: center;"><img width="500" height="750" src="/media/7820235/image__500x750.jpg" alt="Image_ (66)"/></p> <ul> <li>Keep a basket for items that need to be darned and next time you are sitting in front of the TV, mend those holes.</li> <li>Store spare buttons in a jar so they are always close at hand.</li> <li>Keep a piggy bank for loose change that falls out of pockets.</li> <li>Use a small laundry bag to store all those stray socks whose partners will eventually turn up.</li> <li>Have washing labels on display so you can see how to care for each item at a glance.</li> <li>Always fold your jumpers away – never hang them on coat hangers.</li> <li>Keep whites white by soaking your clothes for 10 minutes in a bucket of hot water with two sliced lemons.</li> <li>Always clean stains immediately.</li> <li>Try and clean your clothes with natural cleaners, like vinegar, bicarbonate of soda (baking soda) and lemon.</li> <li>Always handwash your delicates.</li> <li>If buying detergent, make sure you buy the right one for the right fabric to ensure your clothes’ longevity.</li> <li>When handwashing your knits, never wring them out as they will lose their shape. Instead, roll them up in a towel to squeeze the excess water out.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Homemade linen water recipe</strong></p> <p>Making your own linen water is an easy way to bring your favourite scent into the bedroom. I love to use lemon and rose oil.</p> <p><strong>What you’ll need:</strong></p> <ul> <li>30 drops (approx. ½ teaspoon) essential oil of your choice</li> <li>90ml (3 fl oz) vodka</li> <li>375ml (12½ fl oz/1½ cups) distilled water</li> </ul> <p><strong>Makes:</strong> Approx 500ml (17 fl oz/2 cups)</p> <p><strong>Method:</strong></p> <ol> <li>Mix the essential oil and vodka in a glass.</li> <li>Add the distilled water and funnel the liquid into a spray bottle.</li> <li>Shake the spray bottle before each use and keep it in a cool, dry place for up to six months.</li> </ol> <p><strong>This is an edited extract from <em>Chyka Home</em> byChyka Keebaughpublished by Hardie Grant Books NZ$44.99 and is available in stores nationally.</strong></p> <p><strong>Photographer © Lisa Atkinson, Armelle Habib</strong></p> <p><strong><img width="131" height="176" src="/media/7820237/image__131x176.jpg" alt="Image_ (68)" style="float: right;"/></strong></p>

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Savvy woman saves thousands of dollars with this genius laundry trick

<p>If there was a list of the worst chores one can do, laundry would most likely be right at the top.</p> <p>But one savvy woman has revealed how she plans to save “a lot of money and time in the next 20 years.”</p> <p>Posting on Facebook, Jen explained that when her washing machine broke down, she decided to invest in a commercial quality machine instead of another regular washer.</p> <p>According to Jen, the machine will save her hours and thousands of dollars in the future, and she hasn’t regretted her decision in the slightest.</p> <p>“[it was] a big investment but hopefully worthwhile for larger families,” Jen posted on the budgeting Facebook group, saying that the Speed Queen machine is great for those who have “a lot of washing to do.”</p> <p>“I found my machine that was three years old decided to sh*t itself,” she posted. “I burn through machines quickly!”</p> <p>After going through regular machines that Jen claims she would “overload and overuse” and pay thousands of dollars for, she decided on purchasing a Speed Queen commercial washer.</p> <p>While it costs a cool $5785 for the machine and an extra $870 for installation, Jen could not be happier, as they are said to last around 25 years when used in a home environment.</p> <p>“I was extremely lucky enough to have my husband’s insurer help pay for my new washer and dryer (the difference in cost for domestic v industrial), BUT I have saved two days of washing in the one day that would usually take me three,” Jen said.</p> <p>Speaking of the machine, she said it’s “fabulous.”</p> <p>“Does a quick 8kg (max load is 10kg) wash in 26 minutes to the max intensive wash at one hour!” said Jen.</p> <p>She then went on to say that the dryer is “also super efficient”, and despite the fact that it’s industrial and will consume a lot of power, she has solar so is hoping it will be “less expensive.”</p> <p>“I looked at just getting an extra large 20kg top loader, but the basic wash programmes for clothing still took 1.5 to two hours,” she said.</p> <p>“With this 8kg, I can get 24 kilograms done in three hours maximum! Far less electricity long term.</p> <p>“For us, with the last twelve years, and over $6000 on machines, if it lasts for 15 I’ll be happy.”</p> <p>Would you be willing to drop the cash on an industrial washer? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

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How to declutter your home in 15 minutes flat

<p>While most of us would love to live in a mess-free home, it’s hard to find enough time to dedicate to decluttering the entire house. A better way might be to break the big job into small 15-minute-or-less decluttering tasks like the ones below.</p> <p><strong>Kitchen</strong></p> <p>Use bins and baskets to organise similar items. Label them so the system is clear to everyone. If you’re living in with other people, buy a pantry bin for each member of the home. This will not only keep the space looking neat and tidy but will also reduce the risk of people “mistaking” your food for their own.</p> <p><strong>Home office</strong></p> <p>Make your home office user-friendly by reorganising the space in a way that makes sense to you and your family. For example, store homework equipment in an area where your children can easily access them and things that are used less can be kept up high.</p> <p>Julie Stuart, founder of online craft store and blog Clever Poppy<span style="text-decoration: underline;">,</span> adopted this approach when she moved her home office into her open plan living and dining room.</p> <p>“All of my stationery is stored in a basket on my desk. For those things you don’t need on a day to day basis, store them out of sight in a cupboard or wardrobe.”</p> <p>Keep track of your mail and other paperwork that clogs up your desk by stacking it into three categories: bills, personal mail (e.g. wedding invitations) and then one for everything else. If you’re feeling particularly motivated, take the time to pay your bills now or just keep the piles stored neatly in a tray on your desk so it’s easier to tackle later on.</p> <p><strong>Living room</strong></p> <p>Keep on top of clutter throughout the week by identifying the biggest clutter culprit in the living room (e.g. kid’s toys, mail). Dedicate a few minutes every day, or every couple of days if you’re particularly time pressed, to dealing with that.</p> <p><strong>Bathroom</strong></p> <p>Pull all of your toiletries from the cabinet shelves and throw out anything that’s expired or unnecessary (do you really need four lipsticks in the same shade?) Follow this by giving the shelves a quick wipe-down and replace all of the remaining products, putting the items you use the most in easily accessible spots.</p> <p><strong>Bedroom</strong></p> <p>Take some time on a Sunday evening to pick out the clothes you plan on wearing for the rest of the week and hang them at the front of your wardrobe. This will minimise stress in the mornings and will stop you from tearing your closet apart (and making even more of a mess) to find a pair of piece of clothing.</p> <p>Another way to ease the morning rush is to organise your clothing by grouping like with like (e.g. all business shirts together) and adding garment tags to keep them together.</p> <p><strong>Linen closet</strong></p> <p>A simple way to quickly get you linen closet in order – and to stop sheet sets getting lost in the pile – is by tucking a complete sheet set inside one of its pillowcases. If you have a little extra time, stack the sets according to size (single, queen, king).</p> <p><em>Written by Natalia Didovich. Republished with permission of <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Stuff.co.nz.</span></strong> </a></em></p>

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Mum’s warning after disgusting discovery in kid’s lunchbox

<p>A Kiwi mum is warning consumers to check for hidden mould in lunch boxes.</p> <p>While cleaning her children's bento-style boxes, Bay of Plenty woman Grace Bollen pried open the lids, pulling apart layers of plastic that had been glued together, and found mould coating the surfaces. </p> <p>"I first discovered wee black bits coming out of the yellow lunch box so decided to investigate," she told <em>Stuff</em>. "I was absolutely horrified. I was actually in tears at the thought my son was taking a mouldy lunch box to school."</p> <p>She published pictures in a Facebook post that has since been shared 1,400 times. She also contacted the suppliers of the lunch boxes.</p> <p>"When I showed the kids they were stunned, upset because they love their lunch boxes, but they understood how gross they were."</p> <p>Bollen said she washed the lunch boxes by hand each night and left them open to dry completely before morning. </p> <p>One of the lunch boxes had been in use for about a year, and the other for nine months.</p> <p><iframe src="https://www.facebook.com/plugins/post.php?href=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.facebook.com%2Fgrace.bollen%2Fposts%2F10158288750294852&amp;width=500" width="500" height="770" style="border: none; overflow: hidden;" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" allowtransparency="true" allow="encrypted-media"></iframe></p> <p> </p> <p>Since posting her warning, Bollen said she had received more than 20 messages from people who had also found hidden mould in their lunch boxes.</p> <p>"I'm not checking all of them as my inbox and Facebook notifications are going crazy."</p> <p>The owners of Lunch Box Inc, which sold one of the affected lunch boxes, told <em>Stuff</em> they were looking into the problem.</p> <p>"At this stage, we do not know the number of lunch boxes that may have been affected as we are still investigating the matter," said Nicky Skinner.</p> <p>"Upon being notified of this situation, we immediately contacted our manufacturer and are awaiting their response."</p> <p>Stuck on You, the Australian company which sold Bollen's second mouldy lunch box, released a statement.</p> <p>"The wellbeing of children is paramount to all of us here at Stuck On You and we are committed to the highest levels of compliance and safety. And we take our customer feedback very seriously."</p> <p>The company suggested that their bento boxes should be hand-washed in hot, soapy water as soon as possible after use. </p> <p>"Do not attempt to separate the silicon seal from the outer box," they said. "We highly recommend that even once dry you should keep the parts separate and store them in a well-ventilated area until ready to use again." </p> <p>Bollen's post was shared on the <a href="https://www.facebook.com/happymumhappychild">Happy Mum Happy Child</a> Facebook page, where it attracted a lot of comment. </p> <p>"I personally have never encountered mouldy lunch boxes like this – but this could just be because of the type of lunch box my kids have," said Maria Foy of Happy Mum Happy Child.</p> <p>"Although I've reviewed a lot of lunch boxes, most of the parts are removable (or sealed well enough) so that mould isn't an issue. The only thing I've ever come across is drink bottles that get mouldy, but that's not a new one."</p> <p>Foy suggested that unless people owned a lunch box that had been identified as problematic, they should leave them intact.</p> <p>"I would also hesitate to try and remove the existing seal because as soon as you do you ruin the lunch box."</p> <p>If you want to check your lunch boxes without pulling apart the layers that have ben glued together, hold the lids up to the light. You should be able to see dark patches of mould if they are there.</p> <p><em>Written by Eleanor Black. Republished with permission of <strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/parenting/106517559/mums-warning-check-lunch-boxes-for-hidden-mould">Stuff.co.nz.</a></span></strong> </em></p>

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7 ways to revamp your living room without spending a fortune

<p>If your living room feels dull and lifeless it's time for a new look. Using a balanced combination of light, colour and texture, you can transform a tired space into a room you don’t want to leave. And the best part? It doesn't have to cost you a fortune.</p> <p><strong>1. A floor rug</strong></p> <p><span>A floor rug can bring visual warmth and ties in the elements of a room creating a succinct space. In open plan areas it can also help ‘zone’ the living room and segregate it from the dining room. Note: Make sure you consider the size of the rug. A rug too big or too small can change the dynamics of a room. You can find a reasonably priced rug discounted through some wholesalers.</span></p> <p><strong>2. Couch pillows and a throw</strong></p> <p><span>Pillows and throws are a great way to revitalise a room. Simply changing the materials and colours of them can transition your room from summer to winter in a matter of minutes. Bold colours, pastels and thin materials can be great for summer, yet thick materials, heavy textures and muted tones are perfect for winter. Note: Mix and match colours of the same season. </span></p> <p><strong>3. Framed prints</strong></p> <p><span>Framed prints can form interest in a room, create a talking point with visitors and set the style of your living room. You can find some fantastic pieces from secondhand stores. Just remember that you want to match the ‘style’ of the room with the print, not necessarily the colours.</span></p> <p><strong>4. A vase and flowers</strong></p> <p><span>It is surprising how flowers can liven up a room. They bring a pop of colour and a sweet scent that cannot be artificially mimicked. Try keeping the vase a neutral colour or using a large recycled jar, and chose flowers that last, such as natives, kale flowers or greenery fillers.</span></p> <p><strong>5. A coffee table</strong></p> <p><span>Consider the shape and size of the coffee table to suit the layout of your sofa’s. You may find you need to compromise on the size of the table to fit the space. Think about the finish of the table. A timber table top may not always look good with timber floors.</span></p> <p><strong>6. A lick of paint</strong></p> <p><span>Paint is an easy way to transform a room and you can do yourself. Try a feature wall to give new backdrop to framed prints or paint the entire room for a complete overhaul. If you are confident with your decorating skills, try your hand at stenciling. Tip: Make sure you use a complementary hue if you are creating a feature wall.</span></p> <p><strong>7. A side table</strong></p> <p><span>It’s a useful piece of furniture to have. You can move it to suit the room layout and it can be used to sit a lamp, an indoor plant or just your cup of coffee! Like the coffee table, you may want to think hard about the shape and size of the table, and try not to match it with the coffee table. </span></p> <p><em>Written by <a href="http://www.ellevidovichcopywriter.com.au"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Elle Vidovich.</span></strong> </a></em></p>

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Top tips for keeping your pantry in order

<p>There is something about opening the pantry when it’s just been cleaned and organised that fills you with a sense of calm. Having a well organised, totally functional pantry is a must-have in this busy day and age. All it takes is an hour of your time, some matching containers and a little pantry inspiration.</p> <p>I am a firm believer that if you can see everything, you won’t waste it. Shallow= shelving will stop you from stockpiling cans; simple, clear containers will tell you when you are running low on items, and baskets are handy for odd-shaped packets that are a little tricky to decanter. I like to keep everything together – my herbs, spices and baking items, such as flour and sugars, all lined up neatly, a section for tea, and so on. Doing this makes it much easier to find what I am looking for in a hurry.</p> <p><strong>Learn to love labels</strong></p> <p>I can’t be the only one who’s confused plain (all-purpose) flour with self-raising flour, or icing (confectioners’) sugar with cornflour. Poor labelling can cause some real issues in the kitchen, so there’s no excuse not to label your jars, especially when there are so many free templates on the internet to get you started.</p> <p><strong>Creative labelling</strong></p> <ul> <li>Hang a simple piece of brown card from the lid and neatly write the contents in thick black marker.</li> <li>Paint a square on the outside of your jars with blackboard paint and label them with chalk.</li> <li>Write directly on the jar with a marker in neat, cursive writing.</li> <li>Match your labels to your kitchen colour scheme to ensure continuity.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Tips for a neat pantry</strong></p> <ul> <li>When buying containers for your pantry, stick to the same size, style and look. Consistency with your containers will create an inviting sense of order.</li> <li>Label, label, label!</li> <li>Group similar items, especially oils and condiments, together so that you can see everything at once.</li> <li>Never store more than two layers deep. If you can’t see it, you won’t use it.</li> <li>Invest in good lighting for a walk-in pantry. Searching in the dark is no fun.</li> <li>Tidy weekly to avoid your pantry getting disorganised.</li> <li>Having a collection of baskets on the floor of a walk in pantry is a neat and tidy way to store big packets and odd-shaped containers.</li> <li>A plastic-sleeved folder will solve your recipe mess. Simply slip cut-outs into a plastic sleeve and file away. Do the same with takeaway menus.</li> </ul> <p><em><img width="208" height="280" src="/media/7819914/chyka-home-cvr_208x280.jpg" alt="Chyka Home CVR" style="float: right;"/>This is an edited extract from </em>Chyka Home<em> by Chyka Keebaugh published by Hardie Grant Books NZ$44.99 and is available in stores nationally. </em></p> <p><em>Image credits: </em><em>Lisa Atkinson and Armelle Habib</em></p> <p>MREC-TAG-HERE</p>

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4 cleaning myths you shouldn't follow

<p><span>These cleaning tricks have been passed down through families but it turns out they could be doing more harm than good to your household. Here are four myths you shouldn’t follow.</span></p> <p><strong>Myth #1: Use hairspray to zap curtain static</strong></p> <p><span>Hairspray can keep flyways at bay but people have also said it will stop the static on drapes. However, Director of the Cleaning Lab at the Good Housekeeping Institute warns that it is sticky and will leave your fabric feeling tacky.</span></p> <p><strong>Myth #2: Wipe down windows with newspaper</strong></p> <p><span>Many people swear by this cleaning trick as it is an easy way to use up your recycling, but it is not without consequences. Carolyn explains the ink could smear and stain your windowsill. Unlike microfiber cloths which are designed to collect grease and dirt, paper also won’t absorb soil on your windows.</span></p> <p><strong>Myth #3: Store linens with wax paper</strong></p> <p><span>It's a common myth to create a wax paper barrier between </span>sheets, pillowcases<a href="https://shop.oversixty.com.au/collections/sheets/product-type_pillowcases?utm_source=Over60&amp;utm_medium=in-article-link-pillowcases&amp;utm_campaign=Over60Shop&amp;utm_content=pillowcases" target="_blank"></a><span> and other fabrics to prevent colour from transferring. However, it is possible for the wax to melt onto linens, especially if they are exposed to high temperatures. Instead, use sheets of acid-free tissue paper.</span></p> <p><strong>Myth #4: Use salt to prevent colour fading</strong></p> <p><span>The Cleaning Lab has tested to see if this old cleaning trick works and it does not. Carolyn explains if your fabric colour runs, the item probably wasn’t finished properly.</span></p> <p> </p>

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10 more uses for Sunlight soap from the Over60 community

<p>Sunlight soap was the world’s first packaged and branded laundry soap, being introduced by the Lever Brothers in 1884. Since then, it has continued to impress customers with its quality and many uses. We shared with you <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="http://www.oversixty.co.nz/lifestyle/home-garden/2016/01/uses-for-sunlight-soap/" target="_blank">surprising uses for Sunlight soap</a></strong></span> and now, the Over60 community have shared 10 more ingenious uses for Sunlight soap.</p> <p><strong>1. Laundry</strong></p> <p>“I remember my Grandmother using this for laundry, cleaning and used it for the bath and washing dishes. Soap went into basket, locked it shut then as the water ran over it make suds… sunlight soap is amazing.” – Susan Lyzwa</p> <p><strong>2. Shampoo</strong></p> <p>“I always used it to wash hair when we were young... it was remarkable how soft it left our hair too… no conditioner in those days.” – Marlee Marley</p> <p><strong>3. Remove stains</strong></p> <p>“Fancy expensive stain removers are not necessary. Cold water and Sunlight soap rubbed on any stains or marks, before placing item in the washing machine will do the trick.” – Fran Doyle</p> <p><strong>4. Discipline naughty children</strong></p> <p>“I remember having my mouth washed out with it for saying ‘bloody’. That was 55 years ago, and I never said it again in front of my Mum. I can still taste it!!” – Carolyn Korlaki</p> <p><strong>5. Remove splinters</strong></p> <p>“As a child I had a lot of splinters. My nan mixed grated Sunlight soap and sugar to form a paste, place it on my finger then bandage it... later you would feel it drawing the splinter out, no tears.” – Lois Boon</p> <p><strong>6. Clean pets</strong></p> <p>“Old vet told me to use it on my dog years ago when he had some sort of mite rash on his skin. It fixed it.” – Ellie Tarver </p> <p><strong>7. Treat grazes</strong></p> <p>“Very effective for those who get nasty grazes whilst playing various sports. Only 'treat' with Sunlight soap and it will clear up very quickly!” – Robyn Hern </p> <p><strong>8. Stop cramps</strong></p> <p>“Stops the cramps when you put it between the sheets, old wives’ tale but it works for me.” – Penny Button </p> <p>“Put a cake of Sunlight soap under your pillow. Helps with pain, funny but true. Try it.” – Rhonda McWilliam</p> <p><strong>9. Treat boils</strong></p> <p>“Sunlight soap, little water and white sugar makes a paste. It fixes sores, boils and draws out splinters.” – Patti Cloake</p> <p><strong>10. Firelighter</strong></p> <p>“Nanna used to cut chunks of it to put into the wood fired copper.” – Maureen Snelson</p> <p>What are your favourite uses for Sunlight soap? Let us know in the comments below.</p>

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Prince Charles opens up his home to the public in rare TV appearance

<p>The Prince of Wales is to make a star appearance on UK’s Gardeners’ World, asking green thumbs to “do their bit” to save native trees.</p> <p>A fierce advocate of the natural world, Prince Charles will invite the public into his gardens at Highgrove and discuss his love of gardening, which started when he was a boy, according to <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><em><strong><a href="https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/07/03/prince-charles-make-star-turn-gardeners-world-asking-viewers/">The Telegraph</a>.</strong></em></span></p> <p>The future King of England will implore gardeners to get their plants from reputable places, take measures to protect their own garden, and not bring back specimens from their holidays abroad – to prevent the spread of pests and disease.</p> <p>The Prince will be interviewed at Highgrove by presenter Adam Frost for a special episode focusing on trees.</p> <p><img width="424" height="266" src="https://imageresizer.static9.net.au/n0BeYOhQyns3AGQvyvuFG-7V4WA=/396x0/http%3A%2F%2Fprod.static9.net.au%2F_%2Fmedia%2F2018%2F07%2F05%2F08%2F24%2Fcharles2.jpg" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"/></p> <p>It is believed Charles was inspired to help tackle the issue after visiting border force officials at Heathrow Airport earlier this year, where he learned more about how experts are preventing plant-borne diseases being brought into the country.</p> <p>For nearly 40 years, Prince Charles has worked to transform the gardens at Highgrove, revamping overgrown and neglected land.</p> <p>On the TV special, he will talk through the steps he is taking within the Duchy of Cornwall, which covers 53,000 hectares of land across 23 British counties, to avoid the spread of plant diseases and pests.</p> <p>The prince will also share personal experiences of managing diseases on his own estate, including Dutch Elm Disease and Ash Dieback.</p> <p><img width="421" height="260" src="/media/7819610/capture_421x260.jpg" alt="Capture (12)" style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;"/></p> <p>He's previously spoken about his passion to save the trees, saying: "I have always been mortified by the loss of mature elm trees from almost every part of the countryside I knew and loved as a child, so I had high hopes for an American variety that appeared to be resistant to the disease.</p> <p>"I planted an avenue of them at Highgrove and then watched, miserably, as many of them succumbed just like the native variety.</p> <p>"The wider problem is that a great many more pests and diseases are now seriously threatening the health of all our native trees, yet public awareness of this situation seems to be frighteningly low."</p> <p> </p>

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9 cost-effective ways to warm your home this winter

<p>Sick of hearing about the same old heating methods<a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/homed/heating" target="_blank"></a> that never quite do the job? Try these nine unconventional heating hacks. </p> <p><strong>1. Preheat your pyjamas </strong></p> <p>While you shower, put your pyjamas in the dryer to ensure that you have toasty warm clothing to change into as soon as you leave the warmth of the bathroom. For a slightly more affordable version, wrap your PJs in a hot water bottle or heat bag, not only will it heat your clothes but it will make your bed toasty warm too, just be sure to remove the hot water bottle from your bed before you settle down to sleep for the night. </p> <p><strong>2. Join the fan club</strong></p> <p>It might seem counter-productive but turning a fan on at the lowest setting will help circulate heat throughout the room. Don't knock it until you try it!</p> <p><strong>3. Hottie in the car </strong></p> <p>Dreading your chilly morning commute to work? Make your early start a little easier to stomach by putting hand warmers into your pockets or heat up a hot water bottle with warm water or a heat bag and put it on your lap as you drive. </p> <p><strong>4. Utilise bubble wrap</strong></p> <p>For those whose home insulation isn't up to scratch, a budget-friendly trick is to use bubble wrap to insulate your windows from the inside. To create the DIY double glazing, simply get some bubble wrap and use a product like blue-tac to hold it in place on your windows.</p> <p><strong>5. Make use of your curtains</strong></p> <p>Keep your house warmer for longer by making use of your curtains and the limited winter sun. To do this, open all of your curtains on a sunny morning and allow the house to soak up as much heat as possible during the day. As night falls, let your curtains act as an additional piece of insulation by closing them at dusk and trapping heat inside the house.</p> <p><strong>6. Cuddle your pet</strong></p> <p>When in doubt, a great way to stay warm on a cold night is by sharing body heat. While snuggling up with your partner might make you a little bit warmer, cuddling a furry pet will heat you up a lot faster. The key to success with this hack is to cuddle up with the fluffiest animal possible, so try and find a friend with a Ragdoll cat or a St Bernard.</p> <p>7. Go camping… indoors</p> <p><strong>Just because it's winter does</strong>n't mean you can't go camping... well, as long as it's in the living room. For a warm night's sleep, fill up a tent with pillows and blankets, make sure it's all zipped up and settle down for the night. The enclosed space will heat up by trapping the air and using your body warmth to make the space nice and cosy.</p> <p><strong>8. Redecorate</strong></p> <p>Positioning your favourite seat in front of the heater might feel great when you're sitting in it, but when you put furniture too close to a heating source you're actually stopping the hot air from circulating throughout the rest of the room. Fix this problem by repositioning your furniture and allowing the hot air to fill the whole room, rather than just absorbing it all up in one spot.</p> <p><strong>9. Get in the kitchen</strong></p> <p>There's nothing like a good soup or a roast to make you feel better on a cold winter’s night. Cooking is an easy way to warm up the air in your home, while also providing you with something warm to eat at the same time. </p> <p>What is your best tip for keeping your home warm in winter? Let us know in the comments below.</p> <p><em>Republished with permission of <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/" target="_blank"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Stuff.co.nz</span></strong></a>.</em></p>

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7 creative uses for wallpaper around the home

<p>Wallpaper has been back en vogue for years but interior design lovers are still pushing the boundaries of what you can do with it far past the standard feature wall.</p> <p>From covering the stairs to using it as art, here are seven creative things you can do with with wallpaper. </p> <p><strong>1. On the stairs </strong></p> <p>Take your entryway to the next level by installing wallpaper on your stairs. Either install a variety of geometric patterns or transform your stairway into a piece of art by choosing a pattern that is revealed to be a floral or abstract image from a distance.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://static3.stuff.co.nz/img-4774-copyjpg-97cdd145.jpg"/></p> <p><strong>2. Upcycle old furniture</strong></p> <p>Wallpaper can be used to upcycle tired and old furniture. All you need to do is wallpaper the back of a cabinet, bookshelf or even a set of shelves and voila. </p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://static3.stuff.co.nz/17-rod-house12jpg-fa88f1d0.jpg"/></p> <p><strong>3. As a piece of art </strong></p> <p>Interior designer Daniella Norling created a unique piece of artwork in her living room by installing a bold piece of wallpaper - Kanchou by Brunschwig &amp; Fils - in a circular frame. </p> <p>Norling isn't the only one who has begun to think of wallpaper as art.</p> <p>"The lines have become blurred between art work and wallpaper art, which is often large-scaled art, such as a mural," Annabel Taylor of The Paper Room said. "A bold wallpaper or mural can make a great design statement that completely transforms a space. The key is not to have the design elements in your room fighting each other; rather they should be in harmony in terms of colour and pattern."</p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://static3.stuff.co.nz/47726882726407f6da94cc45a5905c6d-c014787b.jpg"/></p> <p><strong>4. On a fireplace </strong></p> <p>Make your fireplace the focal point of a room, even when it isn't in use, by wrapping it in bold wallpaper. For a modern touch, opt for a geometric pattern.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"> </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 658px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media"> <div style="padding: 8px;"> <div style="background: #F8F8F8; line-height: 0; margin-top: 40px; padding: 50.0% 0; text-align: center; width: 100%;"> <div style="background: url(data:image/png; base64,ivborw0kggoaaaansuheugaaacwaaaascamaaaapwqozaaaabgdbtueaalgpc/xhbqaaaafzukdcak7ohokaaaamuexurczmzpf399fx1+bm5mzy9amaaadisurbvdjlvzxbesmgces5/p8/t9furvcrmu73jwlzosgsiizurcjo/ad+eqjjb4hv8bft+idpqocx1wjosbfhh2xssxeiyn3uli/6mnree07uiwjev8ueowds88ly97kqytlijkktuybbruayvh5wohixmpi5we58ek028czwyuqdlkpg1bkb4nnm+veanfhqn1k4+gpt6ugqcvu2h2ovuif/gwufyy8owepdyzsa3avcqpvovvzzz2vtnn2wu8qzvjddeto90gsy9mvlqtgysy231mxry6i2ggqjrty0l8fxcxfcbbhwrsyyaaaaaelftksuqmcc); display: block; height: 44px; margin: 0 auto -44px; position: relative; top: -22px; width: 44px;"></div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BgeSX-gH2K2/" target="_blank">A post shared by Lime Lace (@lime_lace)</a> on Mar 18, 2018 at 10:38am PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p style="text-align: center;"><strong> </strong></p> <p><strong>5. As a kitchen splashback </strong></p> <p>Renters rejoice. Give a tired kitchen a spruce without having to make any costly or permanent changes by installing removable stickers that resemble a tiled splashback.</p> <p>If you're looking for a more permanent solution, you could install wallpaper behind a piece of glass, but the experts say that this won't last in the long-run.</p> <p>"Sticking up wallpaper behind a piece of glass may look okay to begin with, but often moisture will get in behind the glass, bubble and create issues," Lucy Gauntlett of Lucy G Splashbacks <a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/homed/kitchen/95676466/how-to-make-a-splash-with-your-splashback" target="_blank">t<span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>old NZ House &amp; Garden</strong></span></a>.</p> <p style="text-align: center;"> </p> <blockquote style="background: #FFF; border: 0; border-radius: 3px; box-shadow: 0 0 1px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.5),0 1px 10px 0 rgba(0,0,0,0.15); margin: 1px; max-width: 658px; padding: 0; width: calc(100% - 2px);" class="instagram-media"> <div style="padding: 8px;"> <div style="background: #F8F8F8; line-height: 0; margin-top: 40px; padding: 50.0% 0; text-align: center; width: 100%;"> <div style="background: url(data:image/png; base64,ivborw0kggoaaaansuheugaaacwaaaascamaaaapwqozaaaabgdbtueaalgpc/xhbqaaaafzukdcak7ohokaaaamuexurczmzpf399fx1+bm5mzy9amaaadisurbvdjlvzxbesmgces5/p8/t9furvcrmu73jwlzosgsiizurcjo/ad+eqjjb4hv8bft+idpqocx1wjosbfhh2xssxeiyn3uli/6mnree07uiwjev8ueowds88ly97kqytlijkktuybbruayvh5wohixmpi5we58ek028czwyuqdlkpg1bkb4nnm+veanfhqn1k4+gpt6ugqcvu2h2ovuif/gwufyy8owepdyzsa3avcqpvovvzzz2vtnn2wu8qzvjddeto90gsy9mvlqtgysy231mxry6i2ggqjrty0l8fxcxfcbbhwrsyyaaaaaelftksuqmcc); display: block; height: 44px; margin: 0 auto -44px; position: relative; top: -22px; width: 44px;"></div> </div> <p style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px; margin-bottom: 0; margin-top: 8px; overflow: hidden; padding: 8px 0 7px; text-align: center; text-overflow: ellipsis; white-space: nowrap;"><a style="color: #c9c8cd; font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; font-style: normal; font-weight: normal; line-height: 17px; text-decoration: none;" href="https://www.instagram.com/p/BYr8Q1gBWAE/" target="_blank">A post shared by 🔲Lover Of Luxe Homewares (@sartorialinteriors)</a> on Sep 5, 2017 at 9:43pm PDT</p> </div> </blockquote> <p><strong>6. On the ceiling </strong></p> <p>Give any room a dose of wow-factor by installing wallpaper on the <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/homed/ceiling" target="_blank">ceiling.</a></strong></span> </p> <p>Wellington-based accountant and <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/home-property/91135726/statement-ceilings-transform-your-space-with-a-bespoke-fifth-wall" target="_blank">statement ceiling fan</a></strong></span>, Nicola Koptisch, said giving your your fifth wall some TLC is the perfect way to give a dull room an eye catching transformation.</p> <p>"I believe ceilings are just as important as the walls and furniture. A stunning ceiling can completely transform a space," Koptisch said. </p> <p style="text-align: center;"><img src="https://static3.stuff.co.nz/26d2aab55c2587a9782ba37cc0f38694-01ea8e29.jpg"/></p> <p>MREC-TAG-HERE</p> <p><strong>7. As an alternative headboard </strong></p> <p>Not a big fan of headboards but don't want to be stuck with a plain wall behind your bed? Install a framed piece of wallpaper behind your bed instead. Opt for removable wallpaper as this will allow you to switch to a different style of paper without causing any damage.</p> <p><em>Republished with permission of <a href="http://www.stuff.co.nz/" target="_blank"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Stuff.co.nz.</span></strong></a></em></p>

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How regularly you should be washing your bed sheets

<p>A leading microbiologist from New York has advised people to wash their <a href="https://shop.oversixty.com.au/collections/sheets?utm_source=Over60&amp;utm_medium=in-article-link-sheets&amp;utm_campaign=Over60Shop&amp;utm_content=over60-shop" target="_blank"><span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong>bed sheets</strong></span></a> once a week to avoid illness.</p> <p>Philip Tierno from New York University told Business Insider that microscopic life can build up over time and within a week gunk becomes “significant”.</p> <p>Tierno explained that not washing your bedding for two weeks will leave you with a build-up that can leave you with a scratch throat especially if you suffer from allergies.</p> <p>Unwashed bedding can also make you sneeze and sniffle more as the microbes are near your face, meaning you are more susceptible to breathing them in.</p> <p>"Even if you don't have allergies per se, you can have an allergic response," Tierno said.</p> <p>In a recent study, researchers found that a test sample of feather and synthetic pillows that were more than 11.5 -20 years old contained up to 16 species of fungus each.</p> <p>Mary Malone from about.com explained that leaving bedsheets unchanged can lead to health complications such as infected wounds and athlete’s foot.</p> <p>“It is possible to find saliva, urine, genital fluids and faecal matter in the fibres,” she told ATTN.</p> <p>“Infrequent cleaning of sheets and pillowcases allows the fluids to seep into the pillows and mattresses, and those are much more difficult to clean than tossing sheets in the washer,” she said.</p> <p>As well as your own microbial life, you can also find pollen, soil, lint, dust mite debris and faeces and finishing agents in your bedding.</p> <p>"If you touched dog poo in the street, you'd want to wash your hands," Tierno said. "Consider that analogous to your bedding. If you saw what was there — but of course you don't see it — after a while you have to say to yourself, 'Do I want to sleep in that?'"</p> <p>How often do you wash your bedding? Let us know in the comments below.</p> <p><em><strong> </strong></em></p>

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7 cleaning myths you need to stop believing

<p class="first-para">Belief is a funny thing. When we hear something that sounds plausible it’s rare that we’ll go looking for further evidence to validate it.</p> <p>And this is particularly true when it comes to cleaning tips. There are dozens of old wives tales that keep being perpetuated. Many of which are completely false.</p> <p>Below I’ve outlined seven of the most commonly held cleaning myths. Have a read and you may find some of your long-held beliefs aren’t true after all.</p> <p><strong>Myth one: Kills 99 per cent of germs</strong></p> <p>Nearly every cleaning product touts some version of this in their advertising. The truth? It’s no more than a great sounding marketing gimmick.</p> <p>It only means the product killed 99 per cent of germs it was tested on. This doesn’t mean 99 per cent of all germs or even dangerous germs. On top of that, <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="http://www.abc.net.au/health/talkinghealth/factbuster/stories/2010/09/16/3013695.htm" target="_blank">studies have shown</a></strong></span> that water and soap does just as good a job of eradicating germs.</p> <p><strong>Myth two: Vinegar will clean everything</strong></p> <p>I’m a huge fan of <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.domain.com.au/living/ditch-the-dish-soap-40-surprising-uses-for-white-vinegar-20161116-gsq97a/" target="_parent">cleaning with vinegar</a></strong></span> and use it nearly every day. That being said, vinegar won’t actually do the best job on all surfaces.</p> <p>Specifically, vinegar is great for tiles, walls and bathrooms but not as beneficial on stone, granite or wooden finishes.</p> <p><strong>Myth three: Vacuuming too often ruins carpets</strong></p> <p>I first heard this as a kid growing up in the 1980s and, like all the myths in this list, the truth isn’t so simple.</p> <p>You should avoid vacuuming wool or non-synthetic rugs too often. However, it’s perfectly fine to clean more modern carpets multiple times a week if you like. Modern synthetic rugs are made of strong stuff and no amount of vacuuming will wear them down to a noticeable level.</p> <p><strong>Myth four: Natural cleaning products are safe</strong></p> <p>The term “natural” is used so often in marketing that it almost means nothing anymore. Just because a product is labelled “natural” doesn’t mean it’s safe.</p> <p>Case in point; ammonia is completely natural and consists of the elements nitrogen and hydrogen. It’s also completely hazardous to your health if used in anything higher than a trace amount.</p> <p><strong>Myth five: Bleach is the ultimate cleaner</strong></p> <p>Contrary to popular belief, bleach is a disinfectant and not a cleaner. It does a great job of killing everything in its path, but a terrible job of cleaning stains while doing it.</p> <p>Most people flat out refuse to believe this. Citing evidence of how clean their bathroom is after using bleach. In reality, it’s the bleach combined with soap scum that’s doing the cleaning. So minimise the amount of bleach you’re using. It isn’t helping your health or your cleanliness.</p> <p><strong>Myth six: Newspaper cleans glass</strong></p> <p>Sure, if you wipe glass for long enough with newspaper it’ll get clean. But that would be the case if you used Christmas paper as well.</p> <p>You’re better off using an abrasive or absorbent cloth. Both will do a better job than newspaper, and in less time.</p> <p><strong>Myth seven: Febreze helps to clean</strong></p> <p>This couldn’t be more wrong! Febreze doesn’t clean or sanitise much of anything. All it does is reward your brain after cleaning with a nice smell. That way, you think things are cleaner than they actually are. The marketing geniuses behind this deserve a raise.</p> <p>Keeping all this in mind, if you really love to clean windows with newspaper then, by all means, keep doing it. However, if I’ve created a bit of scepticism then take a moment to challenge your own beliefs. It may just make your life easier.</p> <p><em>Written by Michael Brooke. Republished with permission of <a href="http://www.domain.com.au" target="_blank"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Domain.com.au.</span></strong></a></em></p>

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The Queen’s extravagant wedding gift to Harry and Meghan revealed

<p>The Queen has gifted one of her many estates to Prince Harry and his new wife Meghan Markle, following their May 19 nuptials.</p> <p>The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have been given a country home in Norfolk, the <em>Metro</em> has reported. </p> <p>The extravagant royal property called York Cottage is located at Sandringham Estate, a 20,000-acre estate, approximately 180 kilometres northeast of Kensington Palace.</p> <p>The residence is said to resemble "three Merrie England pubs joined together, oozing charm and character", the <em>Metro</em> stated. </p> <p>The estate has been in the royal family for hundreds of years, dating back four British monarchs to 1862, the estate's official website declares. </p> <p>Queen Elizabeth II inherited the large parcel of land when her father King George VI passed away in 1952. </p> <p>Formerly known as Bachelor's Cottage, York Cottage was once home to many of the Queen's relatives, including her grandparents King George V and Queen Mary. </p> <p>When Prince William and Kate Middleton wed in 2013, the Queen gave the newlywed couple Anmer Hall on the Norfolk estate. However it took two years before the couple moved in, just before Prince George was born.</p> <p>"Her Majesty gifted William and Kate Anmer Hall," royal expert and <em>DailyBreak</em> managing editor <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.express.co.uk/life-style/life/926519/prince-harry-meghan-markle-wedding-news-latest" target="_blank">Kelly Lynch said</a></strong></span>.</p> <p>In the leadup to the royal wedding on May 19, Lynch predicted: "I'm not certain how many other homes are on the Sandringham Estate but I wouldn't be surprised if one was gifted to Harry and Meghan. Especially given the fact that the royals spend Christmas at Sandringham."</p> <p>As Prince Harry and Prince William are very close, Lynch believes the two Dukes may opt to live next to each other and have their children grow up together.</p> <p>Lynch also said it's possible that the Queen would give the couple a home in Windsor as it's where Prince Harry and Meghan tied the knot.</p> <p>"I wouldn't rule out any available homes in Windsor, as that will be where Harry and Meghan will wed," she said at the time. </p>

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Is it disgusting to keep these two items in your bedroom?

<p class="first-para">I err on the germ-phobic side. I like to wash my hands. I shower twice a day. </p> <p>The thought of banning from my bedroom handbags, shoes, and clothes that have been made unclean by the outside world, was first put into my head by a colleague.</p> <p>I don’t remember who it was. Only that when I came home that night I went to lower my bag onto the end of the bed, and stopped mid-air, vaguely shivering.</p> <p>I walk down a main road each evening to get to the bus that takes me home. Looking at my bag dangling there, it was like all the miscreants from my journey, which I had put in my headphones to compartmentalise from, had followed me to bed. </p> <p>The coughing uni student, the loitering sweaty guy, the snotty child, the years of rubbish and vomit and urine and spilt drinks and god knows what else that builds on that party street like a lacquer.</p> <p>The dirt of the glorified cattle truck that is the bus (are they ever vacuumed?), the people who go to the bathroom and don’t wash their hands (someone told me they exist) and then go out into the world and get on the bus, my bus, and touch things. Ew.</p> <p>My neurotic misgivings weren’t totally unfounded. A <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4513311/" target="_blank">2015 study</a></strong></span> found that 145 out of 180 handbags swabbed positive for bacteria such as micrococcus, staphylococcus and bacillus.</p> <p>A friend told me she wipes the bottom of her handbag with a disinfectant every week. I treated myself to this activity yesterday and felt a strange wave of perverse calm washing over me.</p> <p>Our perceived precautions come down to layman assumptions about germs, cooties, nasties; otherwise known as bacteria or microbes.</p> <p>But apparently, the bugs have already won. We ourselves are covered in bacteria, said Associate Professor Siouxsie Wiles of the Bioluminescent Superbugs Lab at the University of Auckland. </p> <p>“The reality is, microbes are everywhere and on pretty much everything. Do you put your mobile phone on the bed? Do you have pets that jump or sleep on your bed? Hell, you sleep in your bed and you are covered in bacteria,” said Wiles.</p> <p>“Being frightened of the microbes on your shoes and handbag is completely misplaced. We will be the biggest source of microbes in our bedrooms – we are covered in them.”</p> <p>“And some of those will have the ability to make us sick. But that doesn’t mean they will. The riskiest behaviour people get up to in the bedroom in terms of picking up a bacterial disease is having sex without a condom.”</p> <p>I suppose she knows what she’s talking about (she was nominated for New Zealander of the Year after all). But still, gross.</p> <p>It’s a thought that none of us really like to have – the reality of the microorganisms which call our bodies home. According to <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="https://www.nih.gov/news-events/news-releases/nih-human-microbiome-project-defines-normal-bacterial-makeup-body" target="_blank">a study</a></strong></span> by the American National Institute of Health, the human body contains trillions of microorganisms, so many that they outnumber our actual human cells by ten to one.</p> <p>(An uncomfortable concept for those who, like me, never paid attention in Science. Or Maths.)</p> <p>Wiles said the bacteria present on our shoes, for example, will be a mixture of the bacteria found on our skin (from putting them on and off) and those found in the environment. </p> <p>“There will probably be the coliforms found in faecal matter, if walking on surfaces that have had dogs pooing on them,” Wiles said. “And definitely if you’ve managed to step in poo.”</p> <p>The probability of coliforms on your handbag is about the same as shoes, if they’ve been placed on the floor. Otherwise, any bacteria on your purse would likely come from your own body, meaning they’re harmless.</p> <p>“Coliforms can make you sick – they are the reason everyone should wash and dry their hands after going to the toilet,” said Wiles.</p> <p>(See you disgusting non-handwashers flouting the rules, I know you’re out there somewhere…)</p> <p>So the yes or no to bags and shoes is more personal preference than actual hygiene imperative. This could be considered fortunate.</p> <p>But a <span style="text-decoration: underline;"><strong><a href="http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4364.0.55.004Chapter5002011-12" target="_blank">2013 study</a></strong></span> in Australia found that adults take an average of 7400 steps per day, which considering all the surfaces we cross on a daily basis, is an awful lot of opportunities to step in poo, if you ask me. Or to lean your bag in it.</p> <p>At least now science has given me something to meditate on. Wiles has affirmed I have no need to be frightened of putting my purse or shoes in the bedroom, or sitting on the bed in the same clothes I wore on the bus.</p> <p>“I’m a microbiologist and I keep my shoes and handbags in my bedroom,” she said. “I tend not to put shoes on the bed, but that’s more because they might have mud or dirt on them, not because of microbes.”</p> <p><em>Written by Anabela Rea. Republished with permission of <a href="http://www.domain.com.au" target="_blank"><strong><span style="text-decoration: underline;">Domain.com.au.</span></strong></a></em></p>

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Inside the $46 million London mansion Julie Andrews once owned

<p>The London home, formerly occupied by actress Julie Andrews and her late husband Blake Edward in the 1970s, is now for sale.</p> <p>The townhouse mansion has since been restored and has six bedrooms, six bathrooms, three reception rooms, a media room, gym and spa.</p> <p>The home, which is walking distance from Buckingham Palace and Hyde Park, has hosted the likes of Peter Sellars, Herbert Lom and Omar Sharif, according to listing agent Becky Fatemi.</p> <p>The house also has three terraces, six fireplaces and a 12.8sqm large wine cellar.</p> <p>The elevator holds up to seven people and there is underfloor heating and air conditioning throughout the property.</p> <p>The home’s breakfast nook is particularly luxurious, with a built-in plush seat that wraps around the corner of the room.</p> <p>The front of the house opens to a balcony, which has views of the garden square. At the back of the house, French doors open onto a garden terrace.</p> <p>“The front of the house faces north and opens up to Chester Square. You have uninterrupted green views, which is beautiful to look out onto,” said Becky.</p> <p>“There is a lift that runs on the back of the house, with doors on both sides so you literally float from the main house into the mews into that gorgeous TV room.”</p> <p>Scroll through the gallery above to see inside Julie Andrew’s former home.</p> <p><em>Image credit: Rokstone</em></p>

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Prince Harry and Meghan return $12 million worth of wedding gifts

<p>Prince Harry and Meghan are returning $12 million worth of wedding gifts they have received.</p> <p>The Palace has reportedly been overrun with a plethora of gifts boxes and packages for the newlyweds from generous celebrities and companies.</p> <p>However, royal aides are ensuring the companies that have sent gifts to the couple do not receive any free publicity from the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.</p> <p>It’s believed one company that makes personalised his and hers swimwear sent Prince Harry and Meghan a matching bikini and swim shorts in the hopes they would take them on honeymoon and wear them, according to <a href="https://www.express.co.uk/news/royal/966881/meghan-markle-prince-harry-royal-wedding-2018-gift-present-duke-and-duchess-sussex">The Express</a>.</p> <p>Kensington Palace has strict rules when it comes to receiving free gifts from businesses.</p> <p>“When gifts are accepted, the consent of the Member of the Royal Family should be contingent upon the enterprise undertaking not to exploit the gift for commercial purposes,” the official guidelines state.</p> <p>“Gifts offered by private individuals living in the UK not personally known to the Member of the Royal Family should be refused where there are concerns about the propriety or motives of the donor or the gift itself,” the royal guidelines continue.</p> <p>Prince Harry and Meghan did specifically request well-wishers, who wanted to give the royal couple a wedding gift, donate to one of their favourite charities that champion issues that are close to their hearts.</p> <p>Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau donated $50,000 to Jumpstart, a youth charity, on the day of the wedding.</p> <p>Trudeau issued a statement that said: “Today, Canadians joined in celebration as Prince Harry and Meghan Markle married. To celebrate their union, Canada will donate $50,000 to Jumpstart, a Canadian charity dedicated to making play and sports more accessible to children from disadvantaged backgrounds.”</p> <p>New Zealand’s Prime Minister Jacinda Arden also announced on behalf of her country that it was making a $5000 donation to a charity called Pillars, which supports children and families of prisoners.</p> <p>Meanwhile, Australian Prime Minster Malcolm Turnbull said the country will gift Harry and Meghan a donation to the Invictus Games, which will be taking place in Sydney later this year.</p>

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