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Extrema Ratio Dobermann IV African Review

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Those who have been in the wilderness know that the only thing you can depend on is your instincts and your knife. Anything that requires battery can and likely will fail. Even live ammunition can fail in a damp environment. Time and time again, your knife will be the one equipment you turn to. It’s the most essential gear for survival as its versatility serves both offensive and survival purposes.

Extrema Ratio is known for making high-quality blades. Their website offers a wide selection of blades, however, the one that stands out most is the Dobermann IV Africa. The Dobermann IV Africa is a 7.3″ hunting made from Bohler N690 steel that promises to be your best friend on your next hunting trip – for $690 USD. In this review, we’re going to take a closer look at all the features of this blade and determine if it’s worth the price tag.

What’s in the package?

If you purchase the Dobermann directly from Extrema Ratio’s website, you’ll get a lot of extra accessories including a portable blade sharpener, a marlin spike, and an extra handle made from Forprene.

Extrema Ratio, being an Italian company, is generous with leather laces. Just about every single holes on the sheath came with a foot of laces. There’s easily 10 feet of laces included in the package. It’s a bit overkill, however, appreciated since the laces can be used for tying things down. The pictures above and below don’t show you how much laces are included. We had to trim most of it for photos.

The leather sheath is made from high-quality Italian leather (as you’d expect). There’s a stiffness to the leather that gives it extra durability and makes it resistant to scratches. The sheath has a hard plastic interior that houses the blade to ensure the blade doesn’t damage the sheath over repeated use. All the stitches you see are real.

Marlin Spike

The Dobermann IV Africa comes with a marlinspike already in the package. The leather sheath has a special side pocket for the spike that holds it in place via an elastic belt. The spike seems to be made from the same N690 steel (not confirmed). It’s heavy, solidly constructed, and pointy.

Given how pointy this spike is, experienced hunters can use this for more than tying and untying knots.

Blade Sharpener

Also included in the package is a custom-made blade sharpener. Just like the marlinspike, there’s a special pocket on the sheath for this accessory. It’s a bit difficult to access and you may need to remove the blade in order to get it out. That’s not a major issue since you’re not going to be sharpening the blade that frequently given its HRC 58 hardness.

The back of the sharpener has laser-engraved instructions showing you how to sharpen your knife. It also has a carved out hole in case you want to carry this on a keychain or on your backpack.

Santos Rosewood Handle

The Dobermann IV actually has two versions. The regular tactical version comes with the Forprene handle and black steel blade. The Africa version comes with Santos Rosewood handle, leather sheath, accessories, and a satin blade finish. Both versions are made from the same N690 steel.

There’s an “Extrema Ratio” branding carved onto the spine of the handle, just in case you forgot who made your knife. The handle has the signature finger grip indentation that’s proprietary to Extreme Ratio knives. It’s a great design and feels good in your hand. The indentation for your index and middle finger adds both grip and control, making the blade easier to handle.

Rosewood vs Forprene

There’s something very interesting to note about the two handles. On the surface, it might look like the Santos Rosewood is just a wooden version of the original Forprene handle, but take a closer look. Take a look at the picture above and you’ll notice how different they look from each other. The Forprene has a different butt that seems to hand an indentation for pinky grip, meanwhile, the rosewood doesn’t.

Extrema Ratio gives you two sets of screws to be used for each handle. The Rosewood handle uses just one set of gold screws. Meanwhile, the Forprene handle comes with two sets of stainless steel screws.

The dual screws on the Forprene handle actually feel more secure. Even if you wanted to use two screws on the Rosewood handle, you actually can’t, because the holes aren’t there. I’m not sure why the engineers at Extrema Ratio opted for a single-screw system on the wooden handle.

The screws are actually different in their construction. The Golden screws for the Rosewood handle feel like they’re made from aluminum. They’re lighter than the stainless steel screws used for the Forprene handles. The two stainless steel screws’ head is fitted for both a flathead screwdriver AND an Allen wrench. The golden screw can only be used with a flathead screwdriver, which is a slight inconvenience.

Although the golden screw looks gorgeous, I like the construction and flexibility of the stainless steel screws more.

3/4 Tang

It’s also worth noting that the blade isn’t a full-tang. It’s about a 3/4 tang. The handle is plenty snug and once clamped down, it feels just as tight and balanced as a full-tang blade.

Both handles are one piece giving it extra snug. Assembling and unassembling the handle can be difficult while you’re outside since the handle holds the blade in place VERY securely.

The Blade

The knife is 13.3 inches long with a blade length of 7.3 inches. Without the sheath, the knife weighs 368.5 grams, which is a good balance. It’s light enough to carry around on your belt. Yet it is heavy enough for chopping. The blade is made from N690 Bohler Stainless Steel.

N690 Bohler steel is the perfect marriage between performance and edge retention. The N690 steel is also infused with Cobalt, giving the blade an extra edge, making it even sharper. The fusion of cobalt alloy also gives the blade extraordinarily high edge-retention. The edge also tends to be more even making it easy to resharpen and maintain.

The N690 Bohler steel is also known for its ability to resist corrosion from humidity, moisture, and salt. This makes the blade reliable under any climate or conditions.

The blade is .25 inches thick, making it one of the thickest blades on the market. The extra thickness gives the blade rigidity and strength to handle anything you can throw at it. The picture above shows the blade with an American quarter next to it for scale. Despite having a thicker profile, the cutting edge is still razor-sharp.

HRC 58 Hardness

One perplexing question is why Extrema Ratio engraved “58 HRC” on the blade itself. For those who don’t know, HRC stands for Hardness Rockwell C. It’s a measurement of how hard the metal is. HRC 58 is hard, but certainly not the hardest metal in existence. For $600+, you would expect the metal to the of the highest grade.

After researching this a bit further, it makes perfect sense why they chose this metal. The harder the metal and higher the HRC rating, the more difficult it is to sharpen. The Dobermann is meant to be a hunting knife and comes with its own sharpener. HRC 58 gives the blade all the strength it needs and also makes it easier to work with, sharpen, and maintain on the go.

Final Verdict

This knife will quickly replace every other knife you have and soon will be the only knife you carry around on hunting or camping trips. The N690 Bohler steel blade is sharp, sturdy, and wields a balanced mass that makes it easy to handle. It’s a heavy knife that can be tamed by the generously long handle. At 13.3 inches long with a 7.3-inch blade, there’s nothing this knife can’t handle.

Although the Dobermann is made for hunting, it’s just as good for close-quarter combat, chopping, skinning, and slicing. This knife will quickly become your go-to knife for just about everything. And the superior Italian craftsmanship will guarantee this will be passed down from generation to generation.

At $690, it’s not a cheap knife. But it’s well worth the price given its quality and useful it is. If you’re a hunter or someone who spends a lot of time in the wild, the Extrema Ratio Dobermann IV Africa is well worth the investment.

Influencers

20 Fast Growing Instagram Influencers to Watch

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If you like dolling up, it doesn’t hurt to gain inspiration from the best Instagram beauty bloggers. This way, you can be sure to diversify your look. From attending a wedding to your usual weekend nightlife, these 20 Instagram influencers will make you a head-turner in any event. 

1. Renae Olivia

In an industry that emphasizes a lot on youth, Renae Olivia is redefining what beauty means for older women. Nearing her 50th birthday, Renae is a proud mother of two wonderful boys. And her thriving Instagram account, @renae.olivia, is already about to hit 50k followers. She regularly partners with local makeup and skincare brands.

2. Naima Zahin

This beauty and makeup guru hails from London, if that wasn’t already obvious with her Instagram handle, @thesassylondonista. As a beauty guru, makeup artist, and personal stylist, Naima surely is a triple threat. She partners with local beauty brands such as Crystal Clear Skincare and international brands like Charlotte Tilbury Beauty.

3. Melissa Oosterwolde

Melissa is not one to shy away from being different. In fact, her whole brand is about standing out. From her makeup choices to her clothing style, Melissa strives to stay unique. Her Instagram account, @iammelissaoosterwolde, is close to reaching 25k followers and growing fast.

4. Netta

Going through Netta’s Instagram feed, @naturallynetta_, you immediately sense her strong sense of style. And although she heavily features her outfits, Netta describes herself as being a beauty lover. Her makeup is absolutely flawless and a breath of fresh air in an industry dominated by mostly white beauty influencers.

5. Megan Coates

With a witty Instagram handle like @raincotesbeauty, it’s hard to ignore Megan. She’s a makeup artist turned multiple sclerosis advocate. Her condition allowed her to explore what it means to approach health and beauty in a holistic way. Not to mention, her brand is about promoting wellness and it’s evident in her beauty style.

6. Valeriya

Valeriya is a proud model, coach, beauty queen, and mom. Her rise to fame is rooted in her charm and wit as much as her natural beauty. Her Instagram followers love her for her many adventures, health and beauty tips, and her impeccable style.

7. Asa

Based in Seattle and with an Instagram following steadily growing, Asa’s advocacy is all about body positivity in the beauty community. Her natural approach to makeup is complemented by her relaxed style. Known under the handle @laceandpearlsblog, Asa espouses health, makeup tips, and a great love for her cats.

8. Hayley Hall

Another proud UK-based beauty influencer, Hayley’s style is all about embracing her natural curves encased in warm and earthy toned style. Her makeup look can be described as natural and subdued, complemented by her fashion sense revolving around floral prints.

9. Ashlee

Chicago-based Ashlee has recently crossed the 10k follower mark on her Instagram account, @intheglamroom. From makeup to nails, she certainly does it all. Her feed is dominated by beauty products she regularly uses as well as a few sponsored ones.

10. Geena Samantha

Based in Dortmund, Germany, Geena Samantha of @pastelmints is known for her gorgeous eye makeup. Her liberal use of colorful eyeshadow palettes is very reminiscent of a makeup style by big beauty gurus. With over 33k followers, Geena has been experiencing a steady rise in fame.

11. Lena

Another German beauty guru, Lena is drawing a lot of attention from many makeup fans and professionals because of her amazing and intricate eye makeup. Lena shows off her makeup skill by creating painting-like quality on her eyelids. A strong and growing fan base of more than 20k followers has allowed Lena to grow a strong and significant influence in the competitive world of beauty and makeup.

12. Lesley Marie

Lesley is an up-and-comer in the beauty and makeup world. Still, she has made a name for herself for the kind of stunning looks she creates. Based in NYC, she has amassed close to 45k followers on her Instagram, @lesleymarie1213.

13. Issy Lockett

Boasting an impressive 19.4k followers, this UK-based micro beauty influencer is known for her artistic eye makeup rendering. With her face and body as her canvas, Issy of @isabelle_makeup_ shows off her skill through her extravagant, often over-the-top, makeup transformations that leave her close to 20k Instagram followers stunned and inspired.

14. Aluve Nguza

Hailing from South Africa, this stunning black beauty is an advocate of natural hair and makeup. With a clean and crisp Instagram aesthetic, it’s easy to see why her 13.5k followers love Aluve’s personal brand. Besides beauty and makeup, Aluve is also a gifted thespian.

15. Daniel

Daniel of @danieljewels follows the footsteps of Bretman Rock, James Charles, and Jeffree Star because of his flair for dramatic makeup and liberal use of colors. He has recreated a number of memorable fictional characters from film and television, gravitating towards characters that we know and love.

16. Hamsoyoung

This list wouldn’t be complete without at least one beauty influencer from Korea. Hamsoyoung, otherwise known as @bebe_282 on Instagram is a beauty and makeup guru famous for her quintessential South Korean looks. Natural and understated, her makeup style is benefiting her subdued fashion sense.

17. An

Scrolling through An’s Instagram feed, you get the sense of her aesthetic. Being a mom, she shares makeup tips that focus on everyday looks. From sharing her skincare routine to her step-by-step guide on how to put on eyeshadow, An serves as a mentor for both pros and newbies.

18. Angie

A proud Chilean by heart, Angie has wowed the beauty community with her make up transformations. Being able to paint a green skull on her face, to applying an everyday makeup look, Angie shows versatility with her makeup skills. Angie is not afraid to push the boundaries of what makeup can do, frequently experimenting with colors and styles.

19. Laura Alksne

The beauty community is populated by makeup artists and makeup enthusiasts. Laura Alksne is both. It’s clear she has fun putting on makeup for herself and others. Hence, it shows how she executes each of her looks. A strong sense of style and a distinct makeup look sets Laura apart from other influencers.

20. Jeanette Emory

The worlds of beauty and skincare often blur their dividing line and Jeanette Emory of @thick_skin enjoys straddling that divide. She is a strong advocate of clean beauty, propagates the importance of wellness, and a certified organic skincare specialist. Being a mom, her caring nature transfers to her more than 15k followers.

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Lifestyle

How to Celebrate Halloween in 2020

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Strut your most ghoulish costumes, put up your jack-o’-lanterns, and boast your most delicious pumpkin pies. Halloween is just around the corner! But 2020 seems to be raining on everyone’s parade, especially due to the COVID-19 pandemic. According to a survey, almost 70 percent of Americans celebrated Halloween in 2019. And it’s no surprise why everyone gets giddy when they feel the hair-raising Halloween air and spirit. But how to celebrate Halloween in 2020 despite the pandemic?

They say it’s not the destination; it’s the journey. In this case, it’s not the location nor huge parties; it’s all about creativity. You can still have fun this Halloween and celebrate it like COVID has nothing on you. Here are a couple of ideas.

Hang treats

Let’s start with the basics — Trick or Treat. You surely can’t go about Halloween without the traditional Trick or Treat. But since we’re on to a “zero to minimal contact” rule, homeowners can still be generous with treats by hanging them. Try to hang candies and chocolates from your fence, so kids can quickly grab them. 

Drive-in movie night

Although Halloween organizers would prefer doing everything indoors, nothing like a good scary movie in the open air. Just remember not to share bowls of popcorn or glasses. If you miss hosting events, you can organize a scary movie night in an open lawn, drive-in style, just like how they do it in the 50s. Put up a projector and instill rules on car parking, which should be at least two meters apart. 

Indoor games

Staying at home is still the topmost priority despite the pandemic. And while it’s recommended to avoid mingling with other people in big crowds, you can always have an intimate gathering with your family at home. Think of indoor games for the entire family. You and your kids can still have fun through a pumpkin carving contest. Make sure you have a special treat waiting for the winner. Or you can also do a mummy wrap content. Pick two representatives and let your kids wrap them in tissue paper. The one with the spookiest mummy wins. 

Amp up decorations

Since Halloween parties are canceled this year, there’s no time to mope. Don’t let this break your Halloween spirit. Try to amp up your Halloween decorations at home so you won’t feel like Halloween is skipped this year. Then bake some Halloween-themed goodies for the entire family. 

Scary stories

If you’re wondering how to celebrate Halloween in 2020 with some friends without breaking the social-distancing rule, share some scary stories and do it COVID style. Set up a stage in an open space (your lawn is a good idea). Then put up some chairs, which should be at least a meter apart. Invite some friends over to share their scariest stories or experiences. Make sure you put on some eerie music to go well with the story-telling event. Entice the story-tellers with a special treat so everyone will be compelled to share. 

Bake and drop

Sharing the Halloween spirit has always been the tradition. Unfortunately, this year, sharing can be in different ways. If you don’t want to miss out on Halloween, but are still willing to share this moment with friends and family, you can “bake and drop.” Bake some Halloween-themed cupcakes and drop them off at your friends’ doorsteps. This way, you’re still letting them know you guys are in this together — pandemic or no pandemic. 

Facebook live party 

We know you miss being in huge crowds and meeting new people during special events and parties. But if you’re wondering how to celebrate Halloween in 2020 with familiar and random people, do it virtually. Social media has the power to bring everyone together. It’s all boils down to your creative juices. Host a Facebook live party for friends and everyone who likes to join. If you’re a musician, you can do a Facebook live performance. 

If you know your way through the kitchen, whip up some Halloween-inspired dishes and do everything live. Anything you can offer to the audience that’s entertaining will genuinely be appreciated, especially during this time where everyone is bored at home.

Zoom parties

We won’t be surprised if Zoom will be seeing a surge in video group calls for Halloween this year. Halloween advocates will be turning Zoom video group calls into an all-out Halloween blowout. You can put on the boldest or scariest makeup and organize Zoom events. You can see who has the eeriest backdrop, host costume parties, share ghost stories, or arrange a Halloween-themed trivia event. 

Wrap Up

The COVID-19 pandemic is undeniably holding off everyone’s plans this year. Of course, the topmost priority is everyone’s safety. But that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun — safely. If you’re still in a pickle about how to celebrate Halloween in 2020, try these simple and exciting ideas. Halloween events may be canceled, but nothing should ever break one’s Halloween spirit. 

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Lifestyle

10 Best Affordable Hatchback of 2020

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white hatchback on street

Many people choose a hatchback instead of a sedan primarily for practicality. And with major car manufacturers releasing their own models, we’ve decided to come up with our own list of affordable Hatchback 2020 cars. Our reviews were based on actual experience and recommendations of both car enthusiasts and experts.  

1. Kia Rio 

First on our list is Kia Rio that was designed to carry loads of fun into a practical hatchback. With its looks alone, it’s already a scene-stealer. It also has a wide hatch opening which makes it easier to load and unload items. Kia Rio is ideal if you wish to look sporty yet travel compact. The ride is surprisingly comfortable as well, perfect for long drives. And the best part is, it’s fuel-efficient and you can save a lot of bucks just by using this car. 

Estimated MPG:  33 – 41 mpg 

Price: $16,790 

2. Hyundai Veloster N

If you are looking for an affordable hatchback 2020, and at the same time a car that provides impeccable capability, we recommend Hyundai Veloster N. You will undoubtedly appreciate this lightweight car’s turbocharged engine. It even has a huge interior which surprises a lot of people. Let’s not forget the massive trunk if you always pack a lot. 

Speed up through corners and still be able to maintain the same performance. As Hyundai is known to provide an excellent infotainment system, you will enjoy its responsive screen. 

Estimated MPG: 22 – 29 mpg 

Price: $28,350

3. Subaru Impreza 

What we appreciate about Subaru Impreza is that you get to have a fantastic drive and ride. Plus, it uses high-strength steel body structure. While it will not exactly turn heads, the design is ideal for those who are looking for a more conservative appeal. 

Getting impressive crash-test safety ratings is a big bonus too. That’s their main selling point, and if you are a family man, or you always bring your kids with you, this is definitely the car to buy.  

Estimated MPG: 23 – 30 mpg 

Price: $18,695 

4. Chevy Bold EV

If you are conscious about the environment, then getting this all-electric Chevy Bold EV could be the right option for you. You can drive for up to 259 miles on a single charge. 

Upon testing the car, we were impressed by how seamless the driving experience was. Most people do not fancy its exterior and interior, and we understand why. It’s not exactly a show-stopper, but considering its benefits and efficiency, it is a decent choice.  

Estimated MPG: 119MPGe  

Price: $36,620

5. Honda Civic

There are many things to love about the Honda Civic. To begin with, it is fuel-efficient and provides outstanding performance from the turbocharged engine. It finds the right balance between style, performance, and comfort. 

Expect quick acceleration from this car as well. Without much of a surprise, this has been a favorite of both experts and average drivers. Regardless if you want to drive faster or to just enjoy a relaxing drive, Honda Civic can certainly deliver. 

Estimated MPG: 32 mpg 

Price: $20,950 

6. Toyota Corolla

Known for bringing quality cars over the years, it is only fitting that we include Toyota Corolla on our list of Affordable Hatchback 2020.

This car has exceeded our expectations in terms of safety. Thus, this is ideal for families with smaller kids. Younger buyers will appreciate its Android Auto and Apple Carplay features. Likewise, the older ones will love the car’s driver assists. Steering is smooth, and its brakes are quick-reacting. 

Estimated MPG: 31 – 35 mpg  

Price: $20,290 

7. Honda Fit  

Another model from Honda makes it to our favorites, and this time it’s Honda Fit. Do not be fooled by its exterior as you might think it cannot comfortably sit passengers. However, we tried it for ourselves and drove for a couple of miles. While we couldn’t say that it is 10/10 for comfort, it was decent enough for long drives. Although, there were no significant changes compared to its predecessors. 

Estimated MPG: 29 – 36 mpg 

Price: $17,145

8. Mazda 3

We have to admit that we were taken aback seeing the impressive exterior of Mazda 3. It definitely looks smart and sleek in all angles. You also get to enjoy responsive steering and braking as you drive this car. Its refined engine and the easy-to-use infotainment controls were pluses as well. One downside though is that the rear seats are a bit cramped.  

Estimated MPG: 25 – 35 mpg   

Price: $23,000

9. Volkswagen Golf 

We’re almost finished with our affordable hatchback 2020 list, and it would be a sin not to include Volkswagen Golf. If you want to have that luxurious vibe in terms of interior, you should consider getting this model. Expect the same quality of details on its exterior as well. 

Judging by that, it is apparent that they have carefully spent time building this car. And on top of that, it’s quiet and extremely comfortable. While it’s one of the more expensive cars on the list, it can be justified by its amazing features.  

Estimated MPG: 28 – 36 mpg 

Price: $23,195 

10. Toyota Prius 

Lastly, we have the Toyota Prius. This is one of the most ideal models if you wish to get a hybrid car. It provides great gas mileage as you can see below. Plus, it offers decent space for cargo and supportive seats. The only concern we had was the driving experience which was far less compared to the other cars from this list. 

Estimated MPG: 48 – 58 mpg   

Price: $24,325 

Final Thoughts 

Choosing the most affordable hatchback 2020 car should not solely rely on the price alone. You also have to consider its features and comfort. Hopefully, the list above was able to help you narrow down your options so you can get your car soon.

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