New Year celebrations have come and gone, my dear millennials, and with that comes fitness resolutions which (historically) don’t even last as long as Kim Kardashian’s social media hiatus (Yes, Kim K. is back on Instagram and maybe it’s time you up your selfie game, too).
Make this year different. Drop that phone and go outside to exercise; lose those unwanted pounds and finally work on those dream abs. In 2017, the only thing you should be gaining are likes on your latest #Fitspiration IG posts!
So, how do millennials, self-proclaimed digital natives in this social media jungle, begin a journey to a healthier lifestyle? With a fitness smartwatch, of course!
Working out and working it!
I spent most of December trying out the Huawei Band, a budget-friendly fitness smartwatch. I figured that at the very least, it will serve as a constant reminder (on my own wrist) of a healthier lifestyle I’m supposed to be living.
As it turns out, the Huawei Band was very good at reminding me about my lifestyle. It vibrates every time a fitness goal is reached (with virtual fireworks!), or even as a reminder to stand up and stretch after sitting for too long. The smartwatch connects to your phone via Bluetooth and may be operated through the Huawei Wear app. The app automatically calculates the number of steps needed per day according to the user’s height and weight. It also measures the distance walked, steps taken, and calories burned.
The Huawei Band is water resistant, so neither snow nor rain nor heat nor sweaty workout activities will be a problem. The watch goes on automatic sleep mode after a few seconds; it comes alive at a tap — or several, as the watch isn’t that sensitive, which may be a good thing considering the many random movements of an exercise routine. Battery life lasts a good three to four days without needing a charge.
Naturally, the fitness band should be on you at all times to track your every movement, including your time in bed (sleep is also monitored). Though unnatural at first, having a watch on all the time is something I got used to after a while. Pretty soon, it became convenient, as it left my hands free while still allowing me to get my phone notifications. But, although it’s great that the watch syncs with your phone and receives alerts, the Huawei Band does not allow you to answer calls or read full messages.
The Huawei Band retails in the Philippines for only PhP 2,990 or $80 for the rest of the world, a very affordable price tag compared to other fitness smartwatches. The small, simple gadget has a straightforward purpose and it stays true to that. The Huawei Band packs a punch when it comes to basic fitness functions, but as can be expected for the price, it has limited extra features.
GadgetMatches and matching outfits
When one thinks of fitness bands, one thinks of those rectangular plastic things that go around your wrist and come in bright colors. While I find those cute, I also find glitter glow-stick bracelets cute. Both, however, are not proper accessories to cocktail dresses or half of the things found in every girl’s wardrobe. The usual problem with these fitness trackers is that most of them are targeted towards men; they usually do not have the aesthetic we women need.
For something that’s supposed to be on your wrist 24/7, I couldn’t understand why most of these fitness bands looked, well, way too much like fitness bands.
In this aspect, the Huawei Band won out. The huge circular face is reminiscent of analogue watches, and the white plastic band looks clean and simple — easy to match with any outfit, no matter what the occasion.
After a month of usage, I now have a better gauge of my fitness activities and the calories I’ve burned along the way. I still don’t have abs (it’s coming!), but I am proud to say that not once did my outfits look unmatched.
[irp posts=”9073″ name=”Huawei shipped 140 million smartphones in 2016″]
Why you should upgrade to the Dyson V15
Smart and powerful
Are you someone who gets excited over vacuum cleaners? Why hello there and welcome to adulthood. Vacuuming is definitely one of the most satisfying chores at home. The results are instant and seeing all the gunk you were able to remove from your floors and furniture is always so rewarding. This is why I can be quite particular about my vacuums. I need one that makes the task easier and a lot more interesting — like the new Dyson V15 Detect Absolute.
Dyson’s latest release in the floor care department is arguably the most intelligent and powerful cordless vacuum in the market today. The suction has improved and is now at 240 Air Watts. Thanks to a Piezo Sensor, the V15’s screen will also tell you the kind of particles it’s picking up in your home grouped by size. This is something that people will allergies will definitely be thankful for. However, the numbers aren’t just there as a party trick or merely for information. There’s a practical use for it. As the V15 detects – pun intended – the particles, it also adjusts the suction accordingly. Detection is done up to 15,000 times per second. This allows for the adjustment of the suction power on Auto Mode to be quick and intuitive. Now that’s nifty.
The right accessories and attachments for your Dyson V15
The V15 Detect also comes with a whole slew of attachments and accessories. Admittedly, seeing the range of tools and thinking of all the things you can do with them are two of the things that really get me excited when getting a new vacuum. I love how you get multi-use pieces as well as task-specific ones.
The Digital Motorbar or the V15’s main cleaning head now comes with an anti-tangle comb that clears hair from the brush bar. This is something I longed for vacuums to have as detangling hair from brushes and rollers isn’t something to look forward to. It’s no gimmick either. My hair’s been getting longer and I shed almost as much as our corgi. We tested it here at home and it actually works.
The V15 — both models — come with the Laser Slim Fluffy Cleaner Head which is perfect for seeing microdust and things you may just miss on hard floors. The Hair Screw Tool is the upgrade of the Mini Motorized Tool. It has the power of its predecessor and the anti-tangle technology of the Digital Motorbar. It’s perfect for cleaning upholstery, mattresses, and even in your car.
You also get attachments that were available in previous models like the Crevice Tool for those narrow, hard to reach places, Combination Tool, Mini Soft Dusting Brush, and the Stubborn Dirt Brush. The vacuum still comes with a wall mount where your charger can go through, ensuring tidier storage.
The HEPA model comes with a built-in dusting and crevice tool that hides inside the wand when not in use. It seems like a minor addition but makes it much easier to switch from full vacuum to handheld. Extra attachments like the Low-Reach Adaptor makes cleaning under beds and sofas a breeze and the Fabric and Mattress tool for your in-home cleaning. This frees up your Hair Screw Tool for your car.
But what I’m really looking forward to is the launch of the Dyson Pet Groom tool here in the Philippines. Set to arrive in early 2023, this piece is a game changer for pet owners. Living with a corgi means having to deal with shedding all year round. We also have to hoover every single day or else we’ll be dealing with fur tumbleweeds throughout our flat which gather more dust and allergens. The new Pet Groom Tool is a brush that you can attach to the main body of your V15. With 364 bristles angled at 35°, you’re able to remove loose fur and dander from your pet. Without hurting them, of course.
Filtering microdust with the Dyson V15
Dyson vacuums have always been pretty idiot-proof. It’s a piece of technology that marries form and substance — looking great while packing a lot of power for a cordless vacuum. I’ve always loved how Dyson vacuums don’t use bags. Clearing the bin is easy — hold it over the bin and pull the side handle down. Less waste makes it kinder to the environment.
The V15 also comes with 5-stages of advanced filtration, capturing 99.99% of particles as small as 0.3 microns. You’re not only cleaning your home but the air around you as well. There’s no need to keep buying filters and produce more waste because all you have to do is regularly take off the filter, place it under running water to clean, let it dry overnight and put it back. This works for both the regular and HEPA filters.
Sure, the V15 is a tad heavier if you compare it to the Omniglide and the V12 slim. However, it’s is a more powerful machine and runs longer. At 60 minutes, I’m able to deep clean most of our two-bedroom home. I’ve owned the V11 Absolute Extra Pro (a bigger V11 released in Germany) since 2019 and I’d say there’s not much difference in weight. I’ve enjoyed the power I got from V11 and always regarded it as my favorite vacuum, thinking that it’s hard to top its suction power as far as cordless vacuums go without making it too heavy. I was actually surprised that the V15 was able to achieve just that.
What’s left to improve?
While I’m absolutely smitten by the V15, here’s what I would love to see in the next upgrades. A laser on the Digital Motorbar would be great so that we can also see microdust and hair that tends to blend with the color of our carpets.
Some people online have complained about the lack of a trigger lock. This means you have to keep your finger on the trigger to keep the vacuum running. I think this is more of a question of preference. I don’t mind having a trigger lock as an option but I rarely used it in my older vacuums. For those who really think it can be an issue for them, the V12 does come with a start and stop button instead of a trigger.
The V15 Detect Absolute comes in two variants — V15 Detect Absolute and V15 Detect Absolute HEPA. The main difference is the filter and the colors. The former is in sprayed yellow and nickel and the latter is in a combination of sprayed gold and iron with the HEPA filter coming in a lovely shade of aqua.
The V15 Detect Absolute HEPA variant retails for PhP54,900 and comes with two extra tools (Fabric and Mattress tool and Low-Reach Adaptor) as well as its hidden dusting and crevice tool inside the wand.
The V15 Detect Absolute, meanwhile, is slightly cheaper at PhP50,900. Both models are now available at Dyson stores in the Philippines as well as their official online stores on Lazada and Shopee.
Uniqlo’s Mame Kurogouchi FW 2022 collection elevates cool weather outfits
Fall/Winter pieces that you can also use in the tropics
Manila is completely devoid of freezing temperatures. However, it doesn’t mean one cannot enjoy pieces from the new Mame Kurogouchi collaboration with Uniqlo. They’re great for layering during travel to other countries with cooler climes while being wearable here in the tropics as well.
At a launch event at their Global Flagship Store in Makati on the 11th of November, the team unveiled the latest pieces that come in neutrals and beautiful earth tones. From olive and mustard to a natural beige and the usual blacks, the cool-toned hues are perfect for this time of year. While they’re quite on trend at the moment, the colors and silhouettes are also versatile enough to be worn well beyond the current season.
Quite the showstopper is the 3D Soufflé Yarn Bustier. It can be worn by itself or over the Heattech Wool Blend Turtle Neck or even the Heattech Sleeveless Top. The latter, although part of the Heattech collection, is light enough for the tropical weather when worn on its own. The sleeveless top also comes in a silk-blend fabric that adds a bit of sheen while being so smooth to the touch.
The Heattech Wool Blend Flare Slit Leggings also drew attention from the crowd during the launch. Perfect for wearing ankle boots, this is a pair you would prefer to keep on top when you do some layering.
It’s not a winter collection with no knits. The Mame Kurogouchi 3D Knit Ribbed Square Neck Long Sleeve Sweater comes with bell sleeves to match the leggings. They also make it easier to dress it up by just adding some accessories. There’s also a ribbed skirt that can be taken from day-to-night.
Innerwear is also a big part of the collection. Proving that comfort and style can co-exist, the collection also features hip-hugging underwear and body shapers that aren’t the least bit painful to wear. Wireless bras and period panties that Uniqlo already has in its stores are also part of the collection but in the Mame Kuroguochi hues.
Mame Kurogouchi is a womenswear brand established in 2010. It is gaining worldwide recognition for the use of innovative materials, ingeniously constructed details incorporating traditional techniques, and curved lines that accentuate a woman’s beauty. Designer Maiko Kurogouchi’s commitment to creating clothing with details that allow women to live unrestricted, vibrant lives has captured the hearts of people around the world. This makes her the perfect designer for Uniqlo to collaborate with for comfortable, stylish pieces for FW 2022. The collection is now available in select stores and their online shop. Prices range from PhP590 to PhP1990 for items in the collection.
Uniqlo is running a sale until the 17th of November on some of their regular and seasonal collections. Some items go as low as PhP390. For those living in Laguna, the new Nuvali Roadside Store opens tomorrow, November 16, at Nuvali, Sta. Rosa.
Taking the vivo V25 Pro on a date night in Boracay island
Fine sand, good food, love, and nightlife
The first time I went to Boracay, it was in the midst of a raging pandemic. The island was gorgeous but there was something amiss. Believing that things are sweeter the second time around, I chose to come back for a more relaxed and steady trip with my special someone.
I didn’t over-plan my itinerary for the trip. Instead, I listed down a few restaurants and new activities to try. Together with the vivo V25 Pro, I captured my favorite moments and how I fell in love with Boracay during this return trip.
Chill by the beach
After taking a quick nap, we decided to go from Station 2 — where we stayed — to Station 1. It was less crowded and had more space so you can take in the ocean breeze.
I had a marvelous time basking in Boracay’s fine and milky-white sand.
The weather condition was erratic so we had to find a nearby restaurant when it started pouring. It’s a good thing that Coco Mama was just a few steps away. I finally tried the creamiest coconut ice cream that I’ve been wanting to taste.
Date night at Two Seasons Boracay
I’ve been perpetually curious about the Two Seasons’ famous Four cheese pizza so we decided to give it a try. The buzz I heard from social media is definitely true: this is worth the waiting time!
Tourists were flocking and lining up when we arrived.
Breakfast at Orchard Cafe Henann Park Resort
We didn’t miss our brunch during the trip. I just love complimentary hotel breakfast! I have more reasons to wake up and prepare early.
What I loved most about the Orchard Cafe is how they serve different dishes every day. We get to indulge ourselves in heavy yet appetizing meals during our three-day stay.
Taking each other’s self-portraits for our happy memory bank
What’s a beach trip without adorable beach photos? We had to strike every pose we can because there was no telling when we will be at the beach again.
Thankfully, the Vivo V25 Pro has a 256GB storage capacity which is perfect for photo maniacs like us.
Afternoons by the Pool Barw
Location: Henann Park Resort
I had some time to soak in the pool while sipping cocktails before heading back to our room
Trying out Spicebird’s Seafood feast
Location: D’Mall Station 2
Our island experience wouldn’t be complete without a seafood feast. We capped our dinner date night with these sumptuous crabs and shrimp flavored with special Spicebird sauce. The weather is inviting us for some wine and so we toast!
Couple Photos: Achieved!
On our last full day, we started our plans a bit earlier.
The sun finally went out to greet us, making it a great time to take selfies. Since we rarely get the chance to have photos together, we maximized the self-timer of the vivo V25 Pro’s front camera.
It’s not bad for a self-timer quality. The vibrance and the details are superb. I can post it straight away even without post-processing.
Welcomed by a resident lizard at Puka beach
Ticking off my bucket list
Coming alive at night
Ending the stay
My second visit to the island that never sleeps has been the most relaxed, calm, and spontaneous trip I’ve ever had.
Packing light allowed me to enjoy every moment, since I didn’t have to consider bringing bulky stuff like a mirrorless camera, tripod, and anything that might feel like a liability — which is what happened during my first visit.
Having a reliable smartphone that can last a whole day at its maximum usage is such a real game-changer. It may be for taking photos, updating my social media, and using maps for directions. With Vivo V25 Pro’s camera features, be it during the day or especially at night, I am excited to bring this on my future trips.
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