Fashion and Beauty

Radical Highlight Shades That Work Well For Blondes

Being blonde might have its case of having more fun but when it comes to colouring your hair you can be stuck with your hands in your tresses. Fear of ruining your colour or have your hair fall off in clumps keep a lot of you out of the salon and safely at home stroking your gorgeous sunshine hair. Yet after a few years of the same colour, anyone can get bored and that’s why you sometimes have to step out of your comfort zone and try something completely new.
Nowadays hairdressers know what will work and what won’t so it’s easy to book a session where you can just talk about the different options that you can choose from, and if there’s something you’d really like to have done. They will tell you about after care and how to keep the colour for as long as possible, what shampoos to avoid and what shampoos to use etc. They have an entire arsenal up their sleeves which some of us don’t even know about.
So here are a few radical highlight shaded that will work well with blondes:

Caramel blonde

Think Jennifer Aniston seasons 9 and 10 Friends era. The colour that had many women green with envy. Today it’s easy to do and with the right hairdresser you can channel your inner Rachel and rock it like you were meant to.

Strawberry blonde

We were all at one point or another envious of any woman who was natural a strawberry blonde. Well, gone are the days of envy and here are we are just a short trip from our local salon where they can work their magic.


Nowadays there are so many possibilities that you won’t know how you will every decide. And when opting for a red shade you do have more than a few options to choose from. Red and blonde have always been a beautiful combination and your hairdresser is the person who can make it happen for you.

Buttery blonde

Oh, the California blonde, a shade that conjures up trips to the beach and pool parties. Where summer is endless and everyone is having a great time thanks to all the vitamin D.
The buttery Californian blonde highlights are for the woman who loves the outdoors and want her hair to resemble that lifestyle. So add these gorgeous highlights if your blonde hair is a bit dull and not picking up on all the lovely sunshine.


This is an absolute favourite and done right will turn heads wherever you go. It’s such a gorgeous colour that needs to be shown off and if you decide to go this route you will not be disappointed and probably be back to touch up your highlights for more than a few months.
It doesn’t matter what shade of blonde you are there is a beautiful shade out there for you. Even if you’re someone who wants to rock hot pin highlights just have a chat with your hairdresser Sydney and look at the options.


List of Devices You Need to Build A Smart Home

The ‘smart home’ is now a popular topic among many homeowners and tech-savvy individuals, and for the right reasons. And if you are just starting to join the conversations, well it’s never too late to hop in and discover the buzz that comes with the technology. Simply put, the concept of smart home is linked to automation and control, whether in the form of entertainment, security of doing your everyday tasks at home. In fact, with an emerging industry for smart home, you can automate any part or aspect of your home depending on your needs and lifestyle.
So how do you experience a smart home, and how can you make that big shift from a traditional home to one that’s automated and smart? Well, it starts with the selection and use of popular smart devices that can automate some of the tasks at home, from security to entertainment. Here, we list down some of the popular smart devices that you can get to build a smart home, today.

How about smart doorbell for your home?

Smart things start as soon as you enter your living space. And it can be done by a smart doorbell, an internet-connected unit that notifies the mobile phone of the homeowner in case a guest arrives at the front door. There are a number of brands now competing for attention, but Nest Hello manages to out-smart the other contenders. As one of the best smart doorbells in the market, Nest Hello comes with an optional facial recognition feature, and integrates with Google Home speakers and Nest Cam IQ. And if you have invested into the Google smart home ecosystem, this smart doorbell is a great option.

Monitor who’s outside with a smart outdoor security camera

Even if you are inside your home you still want to to take full control of your surroundings, and discover who’s outside. To do this, you may need a smart outdoor security camera that can help you monitor the activities in a smart way. A popular option available for homeowners is Netgear Arlo Pro, a smart camera that allows you to monitor the activities indoor and outdoor using just one camera. With this security camera, you get to capture activities and store it on a cloud, which you can use for free for 7 days. Also, it comes with a rechargeable battery that when fully charged, can lasts for 6 months!

Control the light, create a scene with smart switches

Compared to your regular light switches, the smart switches are connected to a Wi-Fi network, and allows you to control the lights even if you are not at home. A popular option available for customers right now is Lutron Caseta In-Wall Wireless Smart Lighting Kit which works best if you have Alexa or Apple’s Home Kit. This smart switch is easy to use, and comes with scene management, geo-fencing and a security mode that will allow you to show that people are at home even if you are not.

Stream music and ask for questions along the way with smart speakers

For many individuals, the traditional speakers are no longer relevant in the age of Artificial Intelligence. Thanks to Google Assistant and Alexa from Amazon, speakers have become smart and well-rounded assistants as well. Aside from streaming sounds, these smart speakers are known to perform number of tasks, connect to the internet and work with streaming services like Pandora, YouTube and Spotify. Two leading AIs are competing for consumer attention- Google Assistant and Alexa. For those looking for an entry-level yet competent desktop speaker, then the Google Home Mini is recommended. For a full-featured smart speaker, the ones with Alexa like the 2017 version of Amazon Echo is a smart choice.

Live in color with smart bulbs

Bulbs are reliable sources of illumination in different parts of the house. But if you think that bulbs are still boring, well think again. Today, smart homes are known fitted with smart bulbs which have the capability to change its color to suit your needs, lifestyle and personal wants. The great thing about these smart bulbs is that they are versatile and can perform a number of tasks- they dim, can be controlled anywhere and can change colors. Lifx Mini is a popular smart bulb available in the market which is loaded with colors and features.
This is just a shortlist of the top smart devices that you can add to your home. At the end of the day, the choice of smart devices for your smart home will depend on your lifestyle and priorities. Are you the type of person who prioritizes security, or you prefer to put a premium on your entertainment requirements? The choice of smart devices eventually depends on how you answer the question.

Home and Garden

Inground VS above ground tanks

In any residential area, water tanks have proved to be crucial. Whether you are using council water or borehole water, you need a water tank, the question is which tank? The long debate of whether inground water tanks are better than above ground water tanks seems to be far from over. Each of these water tanks has advantages that are convincing. However, the cons are also many. So if you are thinking of getting a water tank, consider the pros and cons of each option before making your decision. Here are just a few things you might need to know about each option.
The most compelling reason to fit an underground water tank is that no one will know it’s there. Although you may see some piping, the tank itself is often hidden deep in the ground. Most storage tanks are normally huge. If they are to be set up above ground they would take up a lot of space that would otherwise be useful. So if you want to have a garden on your porch or an outdoor living space, an inground water tank is the best option for you. Moreover, a huge structure set up beside your house takes away the beauty of your home. Inground water tanks look good because they are not there to be seen, unlike above ground tanks that can be an eyesore.
Underground water tanks are protected from the elements. In Australia, temperatures can drop to extreme lows and this means water in tanks may freeze. Frozen water is unusable. Underground water tanks are protected from the heat and the cold. Inground tanks can maintain a steady water temperature all year round. If the weather report is querying a hurricane, you can be certain your underground water tank will remain safe. Besides having protection from the elements, underground water tanks are also protected from vandalism.
above ground tank
The biggest cons of underground water tanks lie in their build. The cost of building an inground water tank is high. Excavation of the site is a costly affair. Moreover, underground water tanks need reinforcement to withstand the weight of the soil covering it and also the water in it. Underground water tanks also require a pumping system. This system has high installation and running costs. Additionally, it is difficult to tell if there are any cracks in your underground tank and not all soil types can accommodate this type of tank.
In Australia, above ground water tanks are popular. This is because they are cheaper than underground water tanks. The installation cost of above ground water tanks is low and more often than not a pumping system is not required. The build of an above ground water tank is simple and reinforcement is rarely required. The maintenance cost of above ground water tanks is significantly low. This is owed to the fact that any cracks or other damages to the tank can easily be seen and quickly attended to. If you are creative enough, you can use an above ground water tank to revamp the aesthetics of your house. If the tank is properly camouflaged it can work well with the styling of your property. If you are running a business, openly displaying your above ground water tank can add to your eco-friendly credentials.
Above ground, water tanks are open to destruction and vandalism. From the piping to the tank itself, all the components of above water tanks are open to destruction. Harsh weather conditions like hurricanes can also destroy your water tank. Moreover, your water may freeze during the winter or heat up during the summer. These temperature variations can render your water useless. With above-ground water tanks, there is only so much water you can store. Above ground, water tanks are often limited by the space available. Such tanks are better for properties that are rarely going to need the stored water for crucial purposes. Big above ground water tanks require a special platform to hold the weight of the tank. This is certain to raise the installation costs significantly. Moreover, depending on the position of the water tank, a pumping system may still be required if the water is to reach the household.
Before you decide whether to install an inground tank or an above ground tank, there are some things you must take into consideration. Your geographical location determines the cost of installing an underground tank. Rocky areas are more difficult and more expensive to excavate. Moreover, clay soil is not the ideal soil for installing underground water tanks. If you live in an area that experiences extremely cold winters and hot summers, an underground water tank is your best bet. On the other hand, if you want to keep an eye on your tank and reduce on maintenance costs, go for an above ground water tank. Clearly, there is a lot to consider before choosing the best tank for your premises. Don’t leave room for regret, choose a tank that will match up to all your needs.
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Home and Garden

Do you need council approval to install a water tank?

Installing a water tank may not seem like a big deal, and in some cases, if you have the right set of technical skills, you can do it on your own. However, a lot of other factors have to be considered, such as size, location, plumbing, and public utilities. A lot of these requirements need the intervention of local government units, so depending on where you live, it’s a good idea to check in with your council. Here are some of the areas where you might need their go-ahead before you set up any kind if water storage unit.

Tank size and materials

When people are deciding on the size of the tank that they’d like, they typically focus on their weekly or monthly water usage. They pick a size that optimises access to water, allowing them to keep about a month’s supply at a time. However, they frequently forget to account for the weight of a full tank. A large tank will keep you well-watered, but it can also collapse the floor beneath it, especially if it’s elevated or positioned on a building.
Many councils need you to get their approval if your tank capacity is 10,000 litres or more. The council may send someone over to check your intended location and be sure it can handle the weight. Also, for concrete tanks that have to be poured onsite, you may need a construction or development license to account for the heavy machinery and noise that will be generated by the installation.
underground water tanks

Plumbing requirements

A rainwater tank could have a basic mechanism where your gutters and downpipes are redirected to collect water in the tank. It might also be a complex system of pump connections to the main house, pressure gauges to ensure smooth flow, and detention tanks to prevent flooding and control storm water. These plumbing connections need to be professionally installed to match industry standards.
You’ll have to hire a licensed, accredited plumber, and council officials may want to come and inspect the piping to ensure quality. In addition, pipes and plumbing components will need to avoid interfering with sewer lines and public utilities, so the council needs to approve your chosen pathways. Many councils will ask you to install a bypass switch that facilitates your transition from municipal mains to your personal water storage system. This can prevent accidental flooding as well as protecting and conserving water resources.

Installation equipment

On occasion, the issue isn’t even the tank itself. It’s more about the machinery and requirements surrounding your tank installation. For instance, if you put up your tank in the summer, it’ll be almost a year before the tank can be naturally filled by rainwater. In the meantime, you might choose to pour water from the mains into your tank, which could adversely affect the community supply, so you might want to see if your council objects.
Similarly, installing your tank may involve drilling to excavate your underground tank’s location, heavy vehicles delivering the tank itself, numerous work men moving around your property, cranes and bulldozers to put the tank in place, or cement mixers for concrete. This adds up to a lot of traffic and a lot of noise, which could pose a security risk for your neighbours, and cause a general stir in a small community. Checking in with the council makes the whole experience smoother and less disruptive for everyone involved.

Unique local bylaws

Sometimes, you’ve lived in an area for a long time, but you’re still unfamiliar with local regulations. Some of these laws have been in place since pre-colonial times and they may not seem particularly relevant or sensible, but as long as they’re in the books, they can presenta legal problem for you. For example, did you know that in some parts of the world it’s illegal to install private solar power panels? You have to get all your electricity from the grid.
While that’s not the case in Australia, it’s possible that there may be some seemingly archaic regulations about water use. It’s unlikely anyone will find them and enforce them, but you’re better off being on the safe side, so talk to your council officials, even if it’s just a matter of courtesy. As long as you approach them in an open manner they’ll be happy to guide you around any potential barriers to your water tank.
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Health and Medical

Sports the Whole Family Can Enjoy

A family that plays together stays together. This may sound cliché, but family sports have multiple advantages. Men bond better by doing activities together, so joint sports will help the men in your family bond with each other, and as a sister daughter, or mother, playing with them will help you get closer.
At the physical level, it burns out the energy of little ones, making them less of a struggle to put to bed. For teens, it channels their potentially aggressive strength in a positive manner, and it can teach them discipline too. Plus, sports improve health, mood, and well-being all round, so it’s advocated by doctors and medical professionals. Let’s look at a few sporting activities your spouse, parents, kids, and siblings can get involved in.


Australia is surrounded by ocean on all sides, and we also have a vast network of rivers, lakes, and swimming pools. We are known for producing champion swimmers and for pioneering swimming pool technology, so swimming seems like a natural choice.
Whether it’s an affordable above-ground pool, a man-made salt-water lagoon, or a public water park, it can be fun for everyone. Kids can play in waterslides or splash in the baby pool while more serious swimmers can dive and do laps.
Parents could choose to bask in the sun and wiggle their feet in shallow water as they watch their little ones. You could also play water games like polo, volleyball, or diving for treasure, where shiny coins and trinkets are tossed into the pool and retrieved.


At its most basic, boxing is a good way to defend yourself, so any dad or brother would want his daughter or sister to get good at it. For teenagers, it can redirect the angst that often gets them into fights, cordoning it with scheduled training and discipline.
Boxing offers a full body workout, so it’s a good form of cardio, especially if you incorporate strength training and aerobic work that many boxes do as part of their regime. It encourages healthy competition through tournaments, so it can be a good way to build up self-esteem.
Little kids as young as 4 can start to learn correct form in boxing, and even grandparents can benefit from strengthening their core and improving their posture. They may not have as much power in their punch, but the overall toning will be good for their bones.


Outdoor rock-climbing is a bit of an adrenal sport and involves scaling cliffs and abseiling. This requires an intense fitness level and a daredevil spirit, so it’s not exactly PG-rated. However, indoor rock-climbing can be a good family activity.
Climbing walls have varying levels of complexity. It could be anything from a few feet high on an outdoor modular play set, or several stories in a commercial complex. Climbers have guides and assistants to help them along, and wear a safety harness at all times.
In some cases, there is a safety net at the bottom of the wall. It’s suitable for all ages, and the fun, friendly atmosphere is inviting. Seeing other kids and elders on the wall encourages your family to try it out, and the ambience is warm and welcoming, even if it’s sweaty.


Whether you’re thinking about soccer, standard rugger, or Aussie rules, football is a good option for the family. Depending on how sporty your family is, you could play a serious game that follows the rules, or you could just run around kicking and tossing the ball into the opponent’s goal. Family football can be a light way to get everyone working up a sweat.
Smaller kids probably won’t be concerned with regulations. They just want to move around and have some kind of contact with the ball. Teens might be interested if it’s in good fun, but a regulated game could be awkward if they have begun to sprout body image issues. The same could apply to mums who aren’t as fit and trim as they’d like.
For this reason, family football games should have as few restrictions as possible. Divide into teams, assign goals, pick opposing goalies, and play. If some family members would rather be the cheering squad or prepare refreshments, than that’s cool too.
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National Roller Brake Testing Procedure

Braking problems are among the most common and most dangerous risk for heavy vehicles. Ordinarily, brake failure can cause lethal or even fatal accidents, from skidding and hitting pedestrians to flying off the road and ramming barriers. However, in heavy vehicles, the damage can be far worse because of the required braking distance and the weight of the truck or bus. Even if the brakes are fully functional, the mass of the vehicle can still drag the wheels and chassis, causing further roadside harm.
This is why thorough brake testing is a crucial part of road safety and compliance. The NHVR (National Heavy Vehicle Regulator) issued new regulations for brake testing in the second half of 2017. These new inspection rules were laid out in the NHVIM (National Heavy Vehicle Inspection Manual). The purpose of the manual is to streamline inspection procedures so that no matter where you truck or bus is tested, safety requirements are standardised, ensuring uniform safety practices all over the nation.
Utilising RBT machines
The most effective way to test heavy vehicle braking is through a roller brake testing machine (RBT). These machines can be found at government testing centres or authorised third party centres. The mechanism of the test equipment inspects and evaluates brake efficiency by simulating road conditions while the vehicle is stationary.
The main part of the tester is a mechanical floor equipped with motors, safety sensors, brake transducers, and rollers for measuring brake performance. Computer read-outs show the force, distance, speed, and effectiveness of braking mechanisms. Of course brake testing isn’t as simple as it sounds. The results from the test have to be translated for real-world applications. Several field tests were run in August last year and they helped design the national testing procedure.
Transition in phases
As we’ve mentioned, RBT machines have two components: hardware and software. The hardware comprises the physical equipment that heavy vehicles are attached to, while the software is the computer programming that interprets the results. In order to facilitate smooth development of a nationwide procedure, the roll-out has been divided into two phases. Stage 1 involves hardware upgrades, while Stage 2 focuses on software updates.
Stage 1 was scheduled to take three months, from 1st February 2018 to 30th April 2018. During this period, all physical equipment would be brought to speed, both in government facilities and third-party testing spaces. Tests are carried out by Authorised Officers (AOs) using pre-set guidelines and steps. Stage 2 is still under development.
Earlier hiccups in roller brake testing
RBT machines were first introduced last year, after experimenting with three different testing devices. These were the Levanta, Nepea, and Maha. Initial tests were run at the heavy vehicle testing site in Marulan. Testing occurred for three days, from 14th to 17th August, and results were satisfactory. Once NHVR and its accompanying organisations were happy that safety had been fully dealt with, they announced that trucks and buses should begin applying the test to their fleets.
It turned out the decision was made before comprehensive consultations with truck industry stakeholders. While these key industry players were willing to abide by set standards and have their vehicles tested, they felt the compliance period was punitive and rushed. Through their representatives at the ATA (Australian Trucking Association), the truckers approached NHVR and requested a fairer compliance period. As a result, the period for testing and approval was extended to 31st January 2018.
Importance of written guidelines
However, it has now come to light that a patterned guideline of testing procedures is equally necessary. Without this universal structure, truckers and bus fleet owners may run their vehicles through different test centres and end up with varying levels of brake safety. The real danger here is compliant vehicles may have received less stringent testing, and as a result, experience preventable mishaps on the road.
This is why the relevant authorities – NHVR, HVIA (Heavy Vehicle Industry Australia) and RMS (Roads & Maritime Services) are taking a step by step approach to ensuring a comprehensive written guideline for roller brake testing, no matter which part of Australia the testing takes place in. Once the written template is developed, it can be applied in both government facilities and sanctioned third party centres, ensuring better road safety for heavy vehicle operators and other road users, especially as relates to braking systems.
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Home and Garden

Tips for selecting the right natural stone for your renovation

Renovations are always tedious especially when you are spoilt for choice. From fittings to floor finishing a renovation process can mean an overhaul of your entire house. The process of renovating requires a lot of skilled manpower. You might need to call in a plumber, a mason, a carpenter and an interior designer to handle your house renovations. Before they pick up their tools and turn your living space into a dream home, your input is crucial. Your taste and personality need to be reflected in your house. The team might help you pick out some furniture, wall paints and other fittings. When it comes to choosing the right natural stone for your renovation, here are a few tips.
Choose a stone that is popular in the construction industry. Limestone tiles have been in the construction market for years. In Australia, limestone tiles have become a household name. Their polished surfaces and consistent quality give them the popularity and versatility that is unparalleled. Limestone tiles come in an attractive neutral cream colour with fossil fragment specks all over. They are fit for a variety of indoor spaces including showers, bathrooms and kitchens. The finishing of limestone varies greatly. Only your taste and personality will tell which finish makes it into your house.
Not only can limestone be used in indoor spaces but also in outdoor living spaces. In the outdoors your colour selection is limited. It’s prudent to go for low maintenance shades. Moreover, the surface has to give the tiles enough grip to prevent any accidents over wet floors. Limestone tiles are perfect for a contemporary interior. When coupled with a rustic finish you can pull off traditional outdoor designs. Polished limestone tiles are reflective and appear sleek. Such designs are good for countertops. This adds to the aesthetics of any kitchen space and brightens up any indoor space. It’s therefore not happenstance that limestone is used in countertops.
natural stone tiles
Durability is another factor to consider when it comes to choosing the right natural stone for your renovation. If you haven’t tried granite, please do. Granite is an igneous rock formed from volcanic activity. It holds its place as a popular flooring choice because of its durability. Granite can withstand the outdoor weather, food, drinks and fancy barbeque. Despite all these, granite does not lose its shine, discolour or etch. It’s suited for prestigious entrances and areas that require a sophisticated ambience. Most bank entrances and lobbies use granite and this is precisely because of its durability. So if you are looking into doing your renovations without the worry of future repairs, go for granite. You will get durability and beauty all in one stone.
The perfect stone for renovations does not stain. Soapstone is a good alternative for both flooring and countertops in kitchens. Soapstone is metamorphic rock popular for its resistance to staining. It has a soft and soapy nature only unique to it hence the name soapstone. Soapstone comes in in many different shades and colours, ranging from dark grey to greenish grey with dramatic veining. The stone is resistant to heat and staining. Unfortunately, it can be injured rather easily. However, scratches can be sanded out with ease.
One downside of soapstone is that when left unsealed, fingerprints, oils and liquids darken the stone’s surface. Although they ultimately wash off, the spots can be bothersome. If you want to give your soapstone a dark glossy look just apply some mineral oil on it. However, to sustain the look, the application has to be frequent. Soapstone is certain to get hotter than other light-coloured materials because of its dark colour. This makes it problematic to use on hot, sunny days. In conclusion, soapstone is a durable and comparatively trouble-free surface.  With little room for staining it is ideal for both indoor spaces and outdoor use.
Looks can be deceiving but when it comes to marble tiles, what you see is what you get. This beautiful stylish stone bears the most important element to consider when it comes to choosing a natural stone for your renovation, looks. Marble is one of the most popular rocks in the market and marble tiles have earned their title as one of the most stylish flooring options for indoor spaces. Marble can instantly revamp the appearance of a living space giving it an aesthetic value that is unparalleled. Marble tiles are available in a wide range of colours and giving an endless variety of decorative schemes. The tiles can be cut into different shapes and sizes to create a complex mosaic piece installation. The sight of light bouncing off a marble floor is one of nature’s grand gifts. Although every stone is unique, you must choose the right stone for your renovation.
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Not All Car Polishes Were Designed Equal

There are all sorts of things people do to take care of their cars. Chief among them, and definitely the most notable, has got to be polishing and waxing. Proper car polishing is a two-step process that starts with polishing to remove the dirt from the body, before finishing off with a waxing. The waxing process is what makes your car look as good as new. To understand this process better, you will need to understand the various differences between the two.
Car polish is used to remove grease, dirt and grime. It is also used to cover over scratches and small dents that cannot be cleared by simply washing the car. It is therefore typically used to prepare a car for waxing and detailing. It comes in different forms such as creams, liquids and sprays. Polishes contain certain solvents that work to remove impurities and let your paint job pop.
Waxes on the other hand are used after the car has been washed and polished. They add a protective layer that not only adds a shine to your car, but is also protective of your paint. It can therefore be classified as a sort of paint sealant, since it protects your car from the harmful elements from the sun, pollution, dust, and other damaging substances. It also reduces the amount of water that seeps through to your car’s body, which in turn lessens the chances of corrosion and rust.

What are the differences?

The main difference between the two is the working and application. With polish, you will remove dirt from the car but there is no protection to your bodywork from the elements. You have to be careful however not to overdo the polishing, since you are likely to take off some paint and expose the primer. Wax on the other hand adds a layer of protection for your car. Unlike polish which is applied in large quantities, wax is applied in a thin layer, since too much of it is harmful to your paint. It is important to know that not all polishes and waxes are the same. They differ in quality and materials for instance, with some being natural while others are made from synthetic materials.

Natural vs Synthetic

When it comes to car wax for instance, you have the option of either using natural wax made from canuba. Canuba is a substance that is made from the leaves of a certain palm tree that is native to Brazil. It is then prepared by mixing it with turpentine or beeswax, making it useful to the market. The beauty of canuba based wax is that it offers great water beading and high quality protection. It is recommended for black or dark coloured paints. The major drawback is that it lasts only up to about 4 months before you need to rewax your car.
Synthetic wax on the other hand is made from certain polymers that can bond with the paint. Although it offers protection and a certain quality of shine for your car, it cannot be compared to the quality offered by natural wax. Its main selling point is that it lasts almost 3 times as long in comparison. This means for one polish and wax using synthetic products, you will have to go for three times on the natural one.

Different types of wax

Both types of wax come in various different forms, and understanding the different types is key, for you to know what the best type to choose from is. Here a small introduction to the kinds of wax:

  1. Paste wax:This is known as the father of car wax due to being the oldest form. It is a very hard textured which makes working with it quite challenging. You might have to keep your engine running to create the warmth needed for a successful application. Natural Canuba wax is the best for that all natural shine for your car, due to the natural oils, which interact best with your cars paint.
  2. Spray Wax: These are best suited for quick waxing polish and wax jobs. They are typically used when your previous waxing is wearing thin and might need a boost. They however cannot be used as a substitute for spay either spray wax or liquid wax, since it tends to ear off rather quickly.
  3. Coloured Wax: This type of wax has certain pigmentations added to it to match different paint jobs. The general idea is that it will fill in certain defects in the paint job such as scratches and scrapes.
  4. Liquid Wax: This type of wax is mostly used as an alternative to paste wax, due to its smooth texture. This also makes it less time consuming to apply, while compared to other wax alternatives. The main thing to note bout liquid wax is that even when it is made from Natural Canuba wax, it is still mixed with polymers to enhance its longevity.

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Home and Garden

Frequently asked questions about caring for leather

In shoes, leather is pretty much taken for granted, because it’s such a common thing. In many parts of the world, school children wear leather shoes as part of their uniform. They care for their shoes by polishing them three or four times a week, shining them every day, and scuffing them with their handkerchiefs (or the soles of their socks) during school inspections. Getting these shoes soaked in the rain or puddles generally ruins them though.
Adults are a lot more careful with their leather oxfords and brogues. They can be professionally cleaned by a shoe-shiner, but they still shouldn’t come into contact with large amounts of water. If the shoes have mud or tough stains, they can be wiped with a damp cloth, but they don’t need soap and shouldn’t be submerged.

How do I clean leather bags, belts, and jackets?

These require a slightly different routine from shoes. They come into contact with human skin a lot more often, so they can absorb biological materials. Like shoes, leather garments should be kept dry as much as possible. If you get stuck in a drizzle or downpour, wipe your garment with soft, clean cotton rug to get rid of as much moisture as you can, then air dry it.
To clean your belt or jacket, wipe it with a dry, soft cloth, preferably cotton or microfibre. You can dampen the cloth a little to remove tougher stains. If food or other products spill on your garment, wipe it off as soon as you notice it, or cover it with ground chalk. You can use a special leather cleaner called ‘soft soap’. Rub it onto the leather using circular movements.
Wipe off the ‘soap’ with a damp cloth, making sure it all comes off, otherwise you’ll blog the leather pores and prevent your garment from breathing. This ‘washing’ doesn’t need to be done frequently. Two or three times a year is enough. To keep your bag or jacket moist and supple, moisturise it with a special leather conditioner. Just like shoes, your bag should be stuffed when you’re not using it. This helps the bag retain its shape.

How do I care for leather furniture?

Leather furniture is slightly different from leather shoes. The material is much larger in size, and is often a different grade from shoes and garments. Its care is similar though. Get rid of stains as soon as you spot them. Wipe the lounge with damp cotton cloth and avoid getting it wet. You can also use the soft brush attachment on your vacuum cleaner.
Leather Furniture
While it’s possible to clean leather lounges with a little soap and water, it can darken the leather. Sun exposure can do that to, so try to keep your leather seats out of direct sunlight. To clean stains and spots, use a special leather cleaner that you can rub on the stain and wipe off, just like a bag, belt, or jacket. Clean your leather once a week.
Two to three times a year, apply leather conditioner on all parts of your leather lounge. It keeps the leather nice and moist, extending its life span. Conditioning is easy. Just apply a small amount and rub it into the leather using rounded motions. If there’s any excess conditioner, wipe it off with dry rag to prevent smears.

How do I stop my chairs from cracking?

Genuine high quality leather doesn’t crack as much as synthetic or patent leather, but it does eventually. Remember that leather is made from animal skin, so just like our own skin, it will eventually age. While living skin will wrinkle, ‘dead skin’ like leather cracks instead. So while you can’t stop cracks forever, you can at least slow their progress, just like we do with our own skin. Conditioning twice a year definitely helps and dusting every week.
You can also position your leather lounges in a relatively sheltered area. Sunlight, live flames, and strong wind will dry out the leather’s natural moisture, making it more susceptible to cracking. You should handle the leather carefully. This can be hard to do when you have pets and toddlers, but avoid cutting or scratching the chairs, and try to keep the kids from using the chairs as a notebook, because ballpoint ink is a tough stain to remove.
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Home and Garden

The Importance of Aspect and Sunlight in Your Pool Planning

You approach to your swimming pool will largely determine the kind you end up with. Some owners are hands-on, doing as much research as possible and getting involved in every decision, and maybe even installing the pool on their own. Others prefer to leave it to the experts, letting them do everything from picking the location to cleaning the pool.
If you’re working with a pool builder, they might ask what you prefer, or take all the work off your hands. Most pool builders will ask you what type of pool you want in terms of size, shape, and chlorination. Modern pools can use chlorine, salt water, or you could order an environmentally friendly pool that uses minerals instead of chemicals.
The pool itself could be above-ground, in-ground, or somewhere in between. It could be constructed from concrete, fibreglass, or vinyl, and could be a long lap pool or a uniquely shaped leisure pool. You could surround it with landscaping, hardscaping, or an attractive mix of both. You could even design your own artificial lagoon with an infinity edge, or a tropical paradise complete with rock paths, fountains, and waterfalls.
North and South
When you think about the position of your pool, you’re probably focused on the size of your yard and your privacy considerations. You know you’d prefer it in the back yard, so that strangers on the street don’t spy on you. Still, it might be a good idea to get a compass and think about the aspect.
We’re in the southern hemisphere, which means we have winter while Europe and America have summer, and our aspect requirements are equally polar. This means we want our pools to face north, which is warmer because it’s closer to the equator and further from our closest polar ice cap. However, just like European and American pools, a pool that faces West is warmer than one that faces East, because of the sun’s movements.
Basically, the sun rises in the East and sets in the West, so a west-facing pool will be in the sun’s oncoming path all day. Also in general, a northern pool is warmer than a western pool. An interesting point is the direction the pool faces really depends on the shape of the pool. A flat-bottom pool will receive consistent solar heat, while a pool with a deep end needs maximal sunlight on the deeper side, because it takes longer to warm up.
Shades and shadows
The amount of sunlight your pool gets is important, because it can lower your heating bills and make your swimming experience more pleasant. Even on a blazing day, water that is slightly warm offers a more pleasant swim. The water is cool enough to soothe your overheated body, but not so cold that it withers your fingers, chatters your teeth, activates the sniffles, or gives you goose bumps.
For this reason, position your pool for maximum solar exposure. If your house, walls, or fences cast a shadow, check the intended pool location at different times of day to see if or when the pool falls into the shadow of the house. Do this before you install the pool, since it’s unlikely you’ll move the pool afterwards. Technically, above-ground pools can be moved, but it’s a hassle you’ll probably procrastinate forever.
You should also consider tree shades and hedges. In addition to limiting sunlight, they will also shed leaves into the pool, and can give insects and pests easier access to the pool. If you’re installing a pergola or canopy, keep it away from the pool, and double-check where its shadow falls as the sun shifts throughout the day.
Soothing breezes
Keep in mind that a big part of the swimming experience is sunning yourself dry. If you have a deck for people to lie on, be sure that it’s in the direct path of the sun and out of the shadows. You can still have seating areas under a tent or ledge, where you can rest when it gets too hot or if you need some shelter from the rain.
While you can’t really control the wind, you can consider wind-breaks like fences, screens, or even your house. A cooling breeze can be nice on a hot day, but in a pool, it can increase evaporation, meaning you have to refill your pool faster. It will also lower the water temperature, and give swimmers an uncomfortable chill when they come up for air.
If your area is windy, you can put up a glass balustrade or privacy fence to slow the wind before it gets to the pool. You could also locate the pool in a space where your fence holds off the wind, keeping your water warmer and your swimmers free of the shivers.
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