Tips on How to Be Comfortable in Professional Clothing During Summer

Summer is a season everyone looks forward to. It is a season with lots of outdoor activities. It is also a time for bright colors that replace the dull and dark colors of winter. Summer season nevertheless has its own challenges. The peak of summer is often characterized with scourging heat of the sun that leaves a lot of people longing for cold drinks and cool environment. It is a time when a lot of people are scantily clothed, so as to allow evaporation of water (sweat) from their body, as evaporation leads to cooling. The greater the part of the body that is exposed to air the greater the cooling sensation people experience. In an attempt to maximize the cooling effect they experience, some people tend to be overly scantily clothed such that they stray from norm of decency.

Dressing professionally to work during the summer season can be a challenge for many as professional dressing prohibits any form of scanty dressing. To ward off the heat of the sun and also enjoy the cooling effect of evaporation of water (sweat) from the body in the summer season, there are couple of clothing tips you can consider. These tips are; I. The colors of the clothing you wear. ii. The styles of your clothing and iii. The material your clothes are made from.

Colors of the Clothes You Wear

During the summer season endeavor to wear clothes with very bright and reflective colors, when shopping for summer clothing, buy clothes with very bright colors especially clothes with white background such as stylish tops and blouses, dresses, bright colored skirts, white pants, or white men's dress shirts, bright colored t-shirts. Avoid clothes with dark colors especially solid black clothes, such as solid black pants, black men's dress shirts, black dresses or black skirts, black men's suits. Bright colors are very reflective, they reflect the heat of the sun away from your body, while dark colors are very good absorbents of heat and you certainly do not want to wear such clothing during the summer season. Wearing bright colored clothing in summer will help to reduce the amount of heat your body absorbs.

The Style of the Clothing You Wear .

When possible avoid clothing with long sleeves. Wear clothing with short sleeves, such as short sleeve dresses, knee length skirts, 2 or 3 piece dress suits or skirt suits with short sleeves. You can also wear a cotton jacket over a sleeveless top or blouse. Men can wear men's short sleeve dress shirts, men's walking suits or men's casual shirts.

The Material the Clothes You Buy are Made From

Different clothing are made from different types of materials, some of these materials are cotton, nylon or synthetic in nature. The material from which clothing is made from gives it its unique characteristics. These characteristics determine the durability, comfort and safety of such clothes around certain environment. It is very important to take into consideration the material your clothes are made …

Extraordinary Personalized Gift Baskets Make a Noteworthy Present

Impeccable gift baskets generate amazement and are always enjoyed by the recipient. Their designs are often chic and discriminating. Astute websites often will market engraved and personalized touches to create gifts that are even more meaningful. Personalized gift baskets are an exceptionally popular niche. Adorned with your choice of personalization that will can be engraved, embossed, or monogrammed, stunning, high-class personalized gift baskets are perfect for all occasions whether it is a graduation, holiday, birthday, wedding, or any number of personal or corporate occasions . Gifts personalized with a refine sentiment affirm to the recipient that you've gone one step further to make their present relevant. Remarkable personalized items can be enjoyed for years, perhaps even becoming a cherished family heirloom. Choose a classic gift and personalize it for the hard-to-buy for family members, or for a thrilling surprise in a charmingly designed basket.

Picture how happy a family member and friend will be when they are given a baby personalized gift basket with merchandise that have their baby's name and birth date. However, with many parents becoming quite imaginative in the spelling of even the most common sounding names, make sure of the accurate spelling of the baby's name! Children treasure engraved piggy banks, jewelry and other items, revealing them to family and friends. It's a fun way to create a personalized gift basket for them to celebrate a unique event.

Couples also take pleasure in personalized gift baskets for birthdays, holidays, and anniversaries as an acclamation of love and affection. If you're a romantic, a skillfully engraved wine holder and wine bottle or a lavish silver photo frame, or a monogrammed piece of lovely jewelry, tucked into an exclusive gift basket is a clever way to compliment that milestone anniversary and let your loved one know how much you care. During weddings, birthdays, or holiday occasions such as Christmas when recipients are inundated with gifts, a well-conceived personalized gift basket typically attracts attention from the rest.

Regardless of whether you're looking for a demure acclamation of goodwill or a stunning affirmation of your indebtedness, personalized gift baskets with an engraved message for your important clients, vendors, or business partners are especially effective. Offer employees who are retiring after many years of unwavering service, personalized gift baskets with a gracious item engraved with their name and perhaps a short message. It is a superb way to acknowledge their service. In spite of your office budget you can still find outstanding corporate gifts, which can be personalized at many internet websites.

Hail those important occasions such as the birth or adoption of a child, a young woman's "Sweet 16" party, a high school, college, or graduate school graduation, or an honorary achievement by giving a personalized gift in a alluringly designed basket. This is just one way to keep their precious memory alive eternally.

Choosing an exceptional personalized gift basket is perfect for the hard-to-buy for family member or friend and a clever show of your recognition in a corporate …

Are Rap Videos Like Twerk Keeping Black Women Down

I am a huge fan of Cardi B. I admire her as a young hardworking talented woman of color who came up in the Rap Industry starting from scratch. She is truly a self-made millionaire and deserves all the success and fame coming her way. I love her music and new song, Twerk. However, the video is very explicit and not something you want your daughter or son watching to state politely! The women in the video are all women of color shaking their backside and dropping it in the dirt with thongs on. Visually this could be perceived as very demeaning to black women! Many videos such as this one is rooted in a long history of African American culture of black women being idolized as sex symbols which came from slavery. The white Artist, Lexi Panterra who stated Cardi B was discriminating against white women by not having any Caucasian women in her video seems to be a mockery to me! This really got me thinking, is this something that we should praise?

Why can't there be any Caucasian women in the video Twerk or similar videos as much as we see black women in this role? Should women be fighting for a role of being seen publicly for shaking their assets and demonized for what our ancestors blessed us with for the world to see? I understand that sex does sell and what is provocative gets attention, however; How do these types of music videos affect women of color in their professional and personal lives? In the middle of the longest Government Shutdown in US history many women are struggling to make ends meet and some will be forced into the private industry. There is already a stigma for women being aggressive to reach the top, but we have a double stigma towards black women because of the role they are perceived to play in society. This comes from slavery when Black women were rapped and viewed as owned property for hard labor and in many cases sexual gratification. I enjoy dressing professionally with some flair and the sexy look at times but could we be sabotaging ourselves by playing into our cultures perception and box they place us in? Are music videos such as Twerk putting women in color in a deeper hole if you will of fanaticism of the big booty and not good for anything other than dropping it low? Your thoughts?

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Fashion Trends Men Should Try This Year

Unlike women, men are a bit more sheepish when it comes to trends and fashion. Actually, men tend to cling to timeless fashion, like ripped jeans and monochromatic clothes. But it doesn't mean they are not paying attention to fashion or slowly trying (is that a Yeezy or Adidas NMD, I see?). So without further ado, here are some fashion trends men should at least try this year.

Colored clothes

This one could a bit tough to handle for some guys who have been accustomed to wearing black, white and gray. It can intimidating to wear colored clothes. There's a stigma that you are overreaching in terms of fashion, or generally will look like a rainbow. But the trick here is gradually include colored clothes in your wardrobe. A colored tie here and there, a magenta shirt then combine it with darks you love. This will make you feel more comfortable, and sooner or later you'll be able to wear more colorful clothes.

Retro sports wear

There's a common trend in fashion-it comes back at certain periods. However, this time it's different. Even if retro fashion comes back, it has been updated for more modern times. Case in point, retro sportswear. Giant brands like Fila, Adidas and Tommy Hilfiger have tossed their hats in the trend, and worked wonders for their respective sales.

It can work for a guy's wardrobe as well. There's nothing like wearing a blast from the past with a modern bang. Just as effective as a modern shoe or apparel, but with that classic appeal everyone seems to love nowadays. Can you wear it outside the gym or after your training session? Most are made for that purpose as well, which means our nest topic is …

Athleisure

Speaking of sportswear, that's another fashion men should invest in. Now referred to as 'Athleisure', sportswear has been transformed into a lifestyle-sports apparel hybrid. Long gone are the baggy sweats and the high-cut, stiff shoes. Brands like Adidas, are at the forefront of Athleisure wear, churning out shoes and apparel that are good enough for every day wear (even for the catwalk, actually) as well as technologically-advanced and comfortable enough to be used for sports and training. It's rare to get the best of both worlds nowadays, so guys should make the most of the opportunity.

Vertical Stripes

Solid primary colors are nice in all-for shirts, pants and suits. But you have to live a little dangerously. While that seems like too much of an exaggeration, after all, you are going to wear stripped clothes, not just off a cliff. Most guys feel wearing vertical stripes is similar to jumping off a fashion cliff. Truth be told though, vertical stripes make any men look better, regardless of their body shape and appearance. You can choose the thickness of the stripes to emphasize effects.

Finally, remember that whatever the trend you wear, wear it with confidence. And that's half of the job done.

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6 Ways Coupons Can Boost Your Sales Within No Time

Sales attract customers like honey attracts bees. It's no secret that people love discounts and are more likely to shop huge when a deal is offered. However, the balance does only tip in the favor of buyers. In fact, businesses can also gain more by going for a couponing campaign. It started back in 1887 when a cola giant offered the first-ever coupon. Since then, the company can be called the father of couponing. Learning from its strategy is what allowed other companies to understand the vast merits offered by the technique.

When the first ever coupon was introduced, it was a BOGO offer that did only mean that customers could get more for less. With an increasing amount of customers wanting to make the most of the deal, retailers required more cola. This fueled the company's business and furthered its success. Moreover, as more people visited Cola selling stores, the local pharmacies' owners enjoyed the benefits too.

Since then, the use of couponing in marketing has only climbed up. In the digital realm today, more people want online discounts that encourage savings.

Wondering how offering coupons can skyrocket sales?

Increases brand awareness

Coupons create buzz. They make more people know about a brand. More people are likely to visit a site or a store that is offering a discount. The marketing campaign is something people don't just get involved in themselves; They also talk about it and get more people involved. It's how a business can create its presence in a competitive environment subtly. A survey showed that 22% of buyers were likely to share the news of local deals and discounts with others and 91% of the purchasers who made use of a company coupon visited again.

Raises customer count and loyalty

When your business offers a coupon or a code, customers are more likely to visit. Not only would this improve the customer count but also customer loyalty. Most businesses set sale marks by offering monthly, quarterly, biannual or annual sales. As customers learn to expect discounts, they tend to visit more often. In doing so, they often make more undiscounted purchases as well as they see what you have in stock. As brand awareness is created, more buyers visit. The strategy works indirectly to improve sales and is a smart move specifically in times of the business's financial decline.

Takes the costs down

Coupons are similar to print ads. As mentioned above, they stir brand awareness in a positive direction and also lure in more customers. By doing so, they work as advertisements and reduce advertising costs. Moreover, they can also help save more. For instance, when an online company offers a discount on payment through bank cash transfers, it reduces the costs incurred on transactions made through other sources such as credit or debit cards. This saved money equates to higher revenue and can be reinvested for triggering further sales.

Helps free up room

No customer wants to see the same items sitting on shelves …

The MAIR Model – A Non-Linear Approach to Business Start Up

As an entrepreneur and someone whose business involves working with entrepreneurs, I'm always interested in different models of business start up, and an article I read recently reminded me of the MAIR Model. I first came across this when doing and MSc in Entrepreneurship at Stirling University in 1995, and have used it quite a lot since for training both advisors and entrepreneurs, both in my work with support organizations and my consultancy with Eriskay Associates. Since then, it seems to have come in and out of fashion a bit, but I like it for its logical simplicity and the fact that it is not linear (ie step one, step two, step 3 …)

The basic idea is that you explore four 'interactive variables': Motivation, Abilities, Ideas and Resources. Clearly, each has a critical role to play in its own right:

Motivation: I guess that's what separates thinkers and dreamers for actors and doers … The willingness to really go out and work hard, often under conditions of little short term reward and lots of uncertainty, seems to be one of the hallmarks of successful entrepreneurs .

Abilities: We could start a whole separate thread on this – what are the key abilities that make a successful entrepreneur – no doubt a mix of both hard and soft skills.

Ideas: Arguably, these need to be clearly rooted in a market need to be valid, although, there are some business that seem to be product-led rather than market-led … fashion, any Apple product, the Rubik's cube .. .

Resources: Entrepreneurs are kind of hamstrung until they get resources behind them. I guess we automatically think of cash here, but skills, knowledge and contacts can make a lot of difference to.

… but you also need to think about how these factors interact – a good idea is of limited value, without the motivation and resources to turn it into a business and this is where the final components of the MAIR model come into play: Planning and Organization! Arguably, this is the real job of the entrepreneur. Bringing all the factors together to create something that did not exist before, and may just change the world!

As far as I know, the academic origins of this model lie with Gibb and Ritchie (1982), but I have seen references to it dating back to the 1970s, where it was apparently in use at Durham University Business School. It has appeared in a number of articles since, but I am surprised that it has not gained more traction.

By comparison, think about SWOT analysis – it provides a simple mnemonic and a recognized structure for analysing a situation. And, despite it's many deficiencies (the subject of a future article!), It has gained widespread usage. So, why has the MAIR model not achieved the same? Incidentally, one of the other advantages is it's adaptability. In a very interesting article by Pat Richardson et al (The challenges of growing small businesses: insights from women entrepreneurs …

A Quick History of Stainless Steel Jewelry

Steel jewelry popularity today can be directly tied to its hardcore properties which allow it to be practicably indestructible. It is the Superman of all metals. Stainless steel was discovered between 1900 and 1915, but there were efforts to collect the metal dating back to 1821. While experimenting with metal alloys and their resistance to most acids, they came across a new combination that produced steel.

In order for this to be done, chromium must be used. A Frenchman named Berthier studied the iron matrix and the effects chromium had on it. He found that at least 10.5% chromium must be used to make the metals more durable. Later in 1872, another Frenchman named Brustlein figured out that carbon (at least .15%) had to be mixed in with the chromium and iron to produce stainless steel.

At first, steel was mostly used for industrial items, such as car grills, appliances, railways, vehicles and plenty of other commercial items. Later, jewelers began to see the value steel pieces could bring for those looking for everlasting jewelry. In 1847, steel jewelry came in the form of watches. They were created by the Cartier dynasty in Paris, France, which was founded by Louis-Francois Cartier. These wristwatches were created for their men's jewelry line.

People began to see more trends in the stainless steel jewelry realm as the years went on. In the 1980s, steel bracelets, steel rings and earrings were becoming readily available, among other other pieces. The popularity of the stainless steel wristwatches, which were known to last a very long time, may have influenced the growth of steel in jewelry fashion. Not only are jewelry made in steel fashionable pieces, but they are recommended by doctors to patients who have allergic reactions to nickel, which can be found in sterling silver and gold lower than 14k.

Stainless steel is often compared to gold because the two are last long and are exude style. Of course, stainless steel jewelry over-lasts gold because it is immune to a lot more elements including time itself. Jewelry collectors looking for a non-mainstream look have chosen stainless steel rings and bracelets over sterling silver and gold. Compared to sterling silver, Steel has a darker silver-gray color. More and more people are beginning to lean more towards steel, especially in men's jewelry. There are various types of steel jewelry finishes, such as hot rolled, cold rolled, brushed, reflective, mirror, bead blast, heat colored, satin, course abrasive and bright annealed. They are classified under different types, which are numbered series between 100 and 600.

There are more jewelers selling steel for women and men's product lines, containing bracelets, rings, necklaces, watches, anklets and earrings. Stainless steel is more popular than mainstream metals because of its lifetime guarantee. Steel is by far one of the most sought after metals, not only in the jewelry industry, but in the housing, construction, decoration and other industries that require long lasting materials.

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9 Top Uses For Excel in a Beauty Salon

Every business owner knows a little about Microsoft Excel. It's the spreadsheet program that most of them use to keep track of the numbers their business generates. But that's far from all it can be, especially if you're in the beauty industry.

Here are nine things that a salon can do with Excel; some are common to any business, but a few are unique and apply directly to the beauty business in some exciting ways.

Financials
The most common use of Excel worldwide. Record expenses and income, find what you do that generates most of your revenue and what you pay for that costs the most. Using Excel to track financials is the beginning of any effort to improve those numbers and grow your bottom line.

Inventory
Beauty salons go through a lot of different products and tools at differing rates. Tracking your inventory through Excel not only allows you to see when something needs to be ordered, but can project future orders and thus allow you to budget for larger orders ahead of time.

Tracking Trends
When it comes to keeping track of trends, Excel is limited only by your imagination and how long you're willing to spend putting data in. At the minimum, you can put in your customers and income over a year and get a general overview – but you can get much deeper and put in details like a specific day's weather patterns, whether or not a relevant event was happening in town, and who was working that day. The results can tell you quite a bit about how to accurately anticipate business.

Scheduling
It might not use the advanced mathematical ability of Excel, but the basic ability to manipulate colored cells representing 15-minute blocks of time makes Excel an easy and effective way to make sure that you have all the employees you need during every phase of your day .

Client Records
Keeping records of your client's procedures allows you to easily call up a given clients' favorites when they walk through the door – and doing it in Excel means you can also sort by client, procedure, or product in order to see what is the most popular business-wide.

Task Lists
Every business has things that have to get done in a particular order before they can open for business and before they can go home at night. By creating a simple Excel spreadsheet that lists those tasks, you can create a printable chart that can be checked or crossed off at each open and close to make sure that everything gets done perfectly every time.

Tips
Excel can easily keep track not only of how much hourly pay your workers are earning, but the tips that are being generated by each worker as well. If you have a policy that involves tip-sharing, or you just want to know who the customers appreciate the most, having that data at your fingertips is extremely useful.

Appointment Tracking
Akin to using Excel for scheduling, …

Can Mystery Shopping Companies Improve Your Net Promoter Score? (NPS)

Every business thrives because of the involved participatory activities of promoters. These promoters are customers who believe whole heartedly in your business and will go to great lengths to praise it, spread positive WOM (word of mouth) and recommend the business to their friends. The stronger your NPS is the better are your chances of beating the competition. Hiring mystery shopping companies can help boost your NPS score. Learn the reasons why.

Mystery shopping reveals the customer connect

Your NPS score will only be as strong as your customers connect. The customer connect is the level at which your business can engage customers and read their true preferences. Customer connect will demonstrate the service level of your front line staff. It is here that mystery shopping companies can promote a better understanding of the actual performance of your staff. The shoppers employed by such companies are professionals who can catch defects in service behavior and latch on to dissatisfaction about perceived shortcomings of product or service.

The calculation of NPS

NPS can actually be likened to the financial worth of your business. Its total value of promoters (customers who think positively about and recommend your business) from detractors (customers who feel negatively about your business). This score will reveal your growth rate and your future profitability. It's a commonly known fact that your customer worth is directly tied to your future market share (especially in the service sector). In an industry beset with fierce competition, NPS is one of the true indicators of future growth.

Categorization of customers and mystery shoppers

Mystery shopping companies can help you categories the customers visiting your business locations. They can ask them various questions with an appropriate range based from 1-10 for the responses. You have to segregate promoters and passives from the detractors. Marketing experts recommend increasing the percentage of promoters, converting passives into promoters and work on associated negativity of the detractors. Promoter% -detractor% = NPS and this formula can be only used if you have accurate numbers for promoters and detractors. This data is again best generated by mystery shopping companies.

Mystery shoppers point out hidden flaws

Many business owners spend a large percentage of time worrying about why their profitability is not increasing without having any cognizance of what an NPS score is. Market analytics reports say that only the top players like Apple, Harley Davidson and Fed-Ex have a decent NPS score ranging between 50% to 80%. Most other businesses have low or negative NPS Score. The fact is that 90% of factors that can make or break this score are in the hands of front line service staff. Mystery shoppers can detect mistakes committed and pin point exact reasons for customer dissatisfaction. In other words they can tell you what is wrong and unless you know that how are you going to fix the negatives?

"What are the chances that you will recommend this business to your friend?" is the question that will reveal your true NPS score. …

Planning a Wedding Anniversary Party

Helpful Suggestions for Your Wedding Anniversary Party Planning

Celebrating any wedding anniversary is a time for the married couple to consider reaffirming their wedding vows and to generally reminisce about the past. And, it calls for a party to honor of the blissful couple, regardless of the anniversary milestone, and, after deciding on a theme, you'll want to get right to work creating the most appropriate and unique wedding anniversary party invitations, along with your inspiring anniversary invitation wording. Read on and you will find that there are a few e-commerce websites that make your party planning easier with these suggestions.

Why Have a Wedding Anniversary Party?

Having a party celebration for the married couple shows how much you love them and honors their years of marriage, and it also helps in fortifying their bond between the two of them. And, as the couple reaches the higher milestone, in particular, the silver 25th and the 50th golden wedding anniversary, an acknowledgment and celebration is certainly in order. However, for an event like this to be successful, detailed and careful planning is a must, so the larger elements you will need to consider are discussed in the remainder of this article. Hopefully, these details will be of benefit to you as you organize your anniversary party.

Creative Ideas for Wedding Anniversary Parties

One of the first decisions you will need to make is what type event you will have. Decide if it will be a formal affair with all the trimmings or a more informal family get-together. After deciding this, many of the other issues like deciding on the location of the party will become much easier. For instance, if you are planning a more formal event, you'll need to arrange for a private function banquet hall or room in a hotel, banquet hall, or a restaurant. The venue also depends a great deal on the number of people you send custom anniversary party invitations to.

During the early planning stages, you'll also need to decide on your theme and whether it will be a family barbecue or fiesta, or a more traditional party. Your anniversary party theme may be chosen according to the particular color or gift symbolizing a particular anniversary milestone. For instance; 1st anniversary is Papyrus yellow; 5th is Turquoise; 25th is Silver; Gold the 50th; and so on.

Another always popular, yet often challenging, choice is to go with a surprise party. However, you'll definitely want to include this feature prominently in your wedding anniversary party invitations wordings so the invited guest will not 'spill the beams' and ruin the surprise. One idea is a romantic candle light dinner for just the couple, which would be much easier to pull off as a surprise. Or, maybe a cruise for just the two of them, trying to recreate their first date, perhaps a dinner with a moonlight dance with dinner, to list just a few.

Embellishing Your Invitations for Wedding Anniversary Party

Before you begin personalizing your anniversary …