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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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Business

Are Standing Desks Worth It?

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For most working adults, being strapped to a desk for hours every day means dealing with back pains and other ailments like high blood pressure and excess body fat.

To save our lower back (and most likely, to introduce a new product in the market), furniture makers have come up with a solution – standing desks.  

With all the hype built around the table that allows us to work on our feet, the question remains – are standing desks worth it? Let’s examine the advantages and disadvantages to help us make a stand.

Pros and Cons: Are Standing Desks Worth It?

We often hear the adage, “Sitting is the new smoking.” According to experts, sitting for long periods can be associated with health issues, such as obesity, diabetes, heart disease,  and even cancer.

With that in mind, it’s no wonder that standing desks are making the rounds these days. In fact, it’s seen as a healthier alternative to the traditional version linked to ailments mentioned above.

Despite the perceived novelty of a desk that lets you stand while working, the idea behind the product isn’t as new as it seems. For instance, some claim that Leonardo da Vinci used a standing desk while painting. There are also accounts saying that this type of furniture was common among wealthy English households during the 18th century.

If these anecdotes were real, our forefathers must have also explored the idea of avoiding extended periods of sitting down. Which leads us back to the questions: are standing desks worth it, or are they overrated?

Pros 

Here are some benefits of a standing desk:

  • Improves energy 
  • Helps improve posture
  • Makes it easier to move, thereby keeping you on the go 
  • Helps avoid health issues linked to sitting for extended periods 

Cons

Below are some disadvantages of a standing desk:

  • Can be hard on your legs and feet, especially if you’re wearing high heels
  • Reduces privacy if used in traditional offices 
  • Can be more tiring if used for longer periods

So, are standing desks worth it? It depends on which of the pros and cons above are the most important to you. 

For instance, a standing desk might be an excellent choice for your home office since you’ll be wearing comfy slippers while working. However, it may be a different story if you’re acquiring furniture for an actual office where users wear less uncomfortable footwear.

On another note, a standing desk can be well worth it if you want to move more for health reasons. Standing encourages you to move now and then, avoiding a long period of being in the same position.  

Those who find it impractical to buy a new desk choose to get a desk converter instead. It’s a small table placed on top of an existing desk, allowing one to stand while working.

5 Standing Desks to Consider

If you’re looking for the best standing desk in the market, here are five fantastic options to consider:

1. iMovR Lander Desk

The people who designed Lander Desk from iMovR put a premium on ease-of-use. For one, it’s delivered to users “98% factory pre-assembled.” This means you won’t need tools to assemble the desk. Added to that, you can sync the hand controller to your smartphone for touchless controls.

Price: iMovR Lander Desk costs $1,049 on iMovR’s website.

2. UPLIFT V2

This product was chosen “Best Standing Desk” by Wirecutter twice in a row. A Certified Professional Ergonomist, this desk features a vertical height adjustment range, making it a good fit for users of all heights. It’s also quite sturdy, with a 355 lb lifting capacity. You can choose from more than a dozen variants – from walnut and rubberwood to ash gray and whiteboard. 

Price: UPLIFT V2 sells for $599.00 from their website.

3. Ikea IDÅSEN Standing Desk 

If you’re looking for an Ikea standing desk, IDÅSEN variant is a good option to look at. It’s a simple but reliable desk that’s designed to “outlast years of coffee and hard work.” Besides giving the user ample space to work on, it also features a solution to keep cords neat and organized underneath.

Price: IDÅSEN Standing Desk sells for $599 on Ikea’s website.

4. Fully Jarvis Bamboo

If you’re a conscious shopper looking for a desk made from sustainable materials, Jarvis Standing Desk is worth considering. The sleek and elegant standing desk is made from eco-friendly bamboo, coupled with the brand’s award-winning frame. It also has an LED-programmable handset you can use to adjust the height of the desk.

Price: Jarvis Standing Desk costs €579.00 or around $680 available on Fully’s website.

5. Varidesk Electric Standing Desk

Varidesk Electric Standing Desk features a quiet but powerful electric motor and four programmable memory settings. The heavy-duty frame pairs well with T-Style legs and a durable laminate finish. It comes in five variants: white, black, butcher block, reclaimed wood, and dark wood. The desk comes with easy-to-use tools allowing you to set it up in minutes.
Price: Varidesk Electric Standing Desk 60×30 comes at $650 on their website.

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Lifestyle

Best Baby Gadgets To Make Parenting Easier

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Caring for a baby may be the most fulfilling job in the world, but it’s not exactly a walk in the park, to say the least. Fortunately, innovations paved the way to bring us the best baby gadgets that can make tasks more manageable.

If you’re looking for ways to make your life as a parent easier, you’re not alone. Here are some nifty baby gadgets you may want to add to your cart.

SNOO Smart Sleeper Baby Bassinet

Created by Dr. Harvey Karp, this bassinet is one of the best baby products for newborns. The responsive bassinet combines gentle rocking, a soothing white noise, and snug, safe swaddling.

Price: You can buy the bassinet for $1,395 from the Happiest Baby website. The platform offers free shipping within the US (except Hawaii and Alaska). They also offer a 30-day, no-risk trial, which starts on the day of delivery. 

b&h Infant Baby Bath Floating Temperature Thermometer

This cute device is one of the best baby gadgets to make bath-time fun and safe for your baby. Just float on the bathtub and you’ll know the exact water temperature. In addition to that, it will flash or beep to alert you if the water is too hot or too cold. And because it also functions as a clock, you can use it to time your little one’s soak session. 

Pricing: The b&h Infant Baby Bath Floating Temperature Thermometer is priced at $16.99 on Amazon.

4moms mamaRoo4 infant seat

Comforting a fussy baby can be a real pain in the neck, but it doesn’t have to be with this baby technology. This infant seat features five motions and five speed options. Also, it sways from side to side and bounces up and down. As a result, it can mimic parents’ motions and the baby will be none the wiser.

Pricing: The mamaRoo4 infant seat costs $219.99 on 4moms’ website.

Owlet Monitor Duo Smart Sock 3 + Cam

This Monitor Duo is one of the top contenders for the best baby monitor award. The technology pairs a camera monitor with an award-winning Smart Sock technology. Added to that, you can monitor your little one’s oxygen level, heart rate, and sleep trends through your mobile. Also, it can notify you if readings go beyond the safe zones.

Pricing: Owlet Monitor Duo costs $399 in Owlet’s website.

ZoLi Buzz B Electric Nail Trimmer

This might just be one of the baby gadgets for dads! If trimming your little one’s nails seems to be a daunting task, this battery-operated nail trimmer could be your best buy. It safely files baby fingernails without the risk of cutting the surrounding skin. That said, it’s gentle yet effective in keeping your baby’s nails short and neat.

Pricing: ZoLi Buzz B Electric Nail Trimmer costs $35.00 on ZoLi’s website.

Nuna Pipa Infant Car Seat & Base

This car seat and base is one of the best baby gadgets that can make travel more convenient and easier on your biceps. Lightweight and heavy-duty, it’s ergonomically designed to lug around easily. The brand also offers car seat adapters so you can easily attach it to a stroller.  

Pricing: You can buy Nuna Pipa Infant Car Seat & Base at $299.95 from Nuna Baby’s website.

Munchkin Travel Car Baby Bottle Warmer

This gadget will give your little one a nice, warm bottle of milk on the road. It plugs into the car’s adapter and evenly warms the bottle in minutes. In addition to that, the digital screen displays the temperature as well as the warming timer. It also has an auto shut-off feature for added security.

Pricing: Munchkin Travel Car Baby Bottle Warmer costs $24.99 from Amazon.

Baby Jogger City Mini GT2 Stroller

Baby Jogger is one of the best baby products brands for strollers, car seats, and accessories. This product, City Mini GT2 Stroller, offers steady agility on any terrain. It has a one-hand compact fold feature, making it a breeze to use for your little one’s stroll.

Pricing: City Mini GT2 Stroller sells for $379.99 from Baby Jogger’s website.

Baby Shusher Sleep Miracle Soother

Know how your fussy baby calms down with your comforting shush? Well, that’s exactly what this device does. Also, it uses a real human voice to soothe your little one and free up your time for other things you need to get done.

Pricing: The Baby Shusher Sleep Miracle Soother sells for $34.99 at their website.

Hatch Baby Rest Night Light and Sound Machine

Last but not least on our best baby gadgets is this night light and sound machine from hatch baby. The device lets you choose from a library of snooze-inducing sounds and white noise. Added to that, you can also customize the light hues to make it your own. It also has time-to-rise, and audio monitor functions

Pricing: Hatch Baby Rest Night Light and Sound Machine costs $89.99 on Hatch’s website.

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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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