… a word from the Editor and Blogger

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It’s mid June, and for me that means two things. My birthdayin Ibiza, on 21st June so no blog next week, and the onset of full-on wedding season.

Are you still single but desperate to get married? Do you like the idea of committing to one person for the rest of your life?  Well, what if that one person just happens to be you?

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There’s a new wedding trend gaining popularity. A trend that results in no arguments over whose family sits where, which mother of the happy couple gets to wear their favourite colours, and absolutely no debate regarding choice of honeymoon destination.

Sound good? Well SOLOGAMY is the way to go. That is, if you want to eliminate all those compromises that make organising a wedding that stressful you end up wondering why on earth you’re getting married.

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In case you hadn’t guessed, sologamy is the act of marrying yourself. That’s right, you say ‘I do’ to yourself and you promise to love, honour and cherish….yourself.

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It’s not actually as narcissistic as it sounds. The idea is to give yourself a commitment that values self-love and self-compassion and supporters of the practice claim it leads to a happier life. The bonus is that you don’t even have to change your name.

There was an episode of Sex and the City that aired in 2003 when Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, announced that she was marrying herself.

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The catalyst for her decision was that, while Carrie was happy to celebrate her friends’ life choices, they never celebrated her choosing to be single and childless.

I’ll leave you to ponder on the single life conundrum, and crack-on with this week’s instalment of Zips It Up. We check out Gingham, the must-have slogan tee and investigate a Menswear microtrend that has us saying yay or nay?

Sexy Chest Swimwear

Ever wished you had someone else’s body, whilst making your way from the lounger to the pool? Or dreamed of making everyone by the pool woof whistle as you sidle on by?

Well, you your wishes can (kind of) come true. A US company is offering one-piece swimming costumes – with a hairy male torso print. Hmmm.

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The $44 (£35) costume, designed by Beloved Shirts, is available in different skin tones and has been revealed to the company’s 105,000 Instagram followers.

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The ‘Sexy Chest One Piece Swimsuit’ comes with the slogan: ‘Make the pool boy say “WTF!”‘ and is the latest in a string of quirky designs from the company, whose tagline is ‘Yep – they’re real!’

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The costume is available in sizes from XS to XXL and is offered in ‘dark’ and ‘tan’.

Unsurprisingly, the photos, uploaded to the Beloved Shirts Instagram page, have caused more than a few ripples. This is definitely one for the Magaluf hen party.

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The swimwear, called ‘Sexy Chest One Piece Swimsuit’ is digitally printed with the torso of a hairy male. And in case you were wondering, it’s an image that continues round the back but not ‘down there’… The hair stretches from around the nipples to down the not-quite-a-six-pack abs. Meanwhile, behind, there’s a lower back gap in the hairiness before normal service resumes towards the buttocks.

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While many of those on social media questioned whether the outlandish swimwear was actually a joke, created in Photoshop, it seems that hairy chest swimming costumes are a real thing. They can be purchased via the company’s website.

And if you want a full hairy body tracksuit too, you can bag one of those while you’re there too – a snip at $119.

It’s All About Gingham

Forget picnic blankets – the catwalks have put gingham prints firmly back on our fashion radar for summer. Not sure how to pull off the trend? Make sure you stick to these style rules.

  • A gingham top will effortlessly update your wardrobe. Just look for modern style details, such as belted waists, scalloped detailing, statement sleeves or embroidery.
  • Don’t go bonkers with the print. Wearing too many pieces at once will only leave you – and everyone else – square-eyed.
  • A gingham dress is perfect for a whole host of occasions. From garden parties to office meetings, you’re sure to find one to suit.
  • Tone down your chequered prints with sleek white separates for a more grown-up look.
  • Accessories will gently break you into the trend. The gingham block heels (above right) will look great with a denim shirt dress.
  • Embroidered top, £16, F&F at Tesco

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    Swimsuit, £16.50, Tu at Sainsbury’s

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       Block heel, £19.98, Stradivarius

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       Sandals, £19.99, New Look

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      Skirt, £24.99, New Look

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       Bikini top, £28Briefs, £20, Figleaves.com

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     Wedges, £31.20, Miss Selfridge

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      Trousers, £38, Next

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Blouse, £45, White Stuff

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 Dress, £65, J by Jasper Conran at Debenhams

Merci Topshop For the Gucci Dupe Tee

We love a good designer dupe. And right now, one seems to be flying off the shelves, with bloggers and influencers all over it.

Everyone wants the Gucci-inspired Topshop slogan t-shirt – and it’s only £15

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The ‘Merci mon cheri’ top has racked up more than 35,000 likes on Instagram The white t-shirt features two-intertwined hearts over red stripes with the French slogan ‘Merci mon cheri,’ which translates as ‘Thank you darling’.

It’s strikingly similar to Gucci’s iconic £320 logo top but costs just a fraction of the price.

I looked for the Gucci version on ebay and prices were reaching a staggering £3,000.

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Unfortunately, Top Shop’s version is currently sold out online, but be sure to check your local store to see if they have stock.

Slogan tees are a must-have this season and the high street chain has plenty of them, including the ‘Feminist’ tee , which was a great dupe for Dior’s logo shirt . Topshop is definitely the go to store for statements and slogans this summer.

Mens Micro Fashion: Espidrilles

Ah, espadrilles. The Marmite of summer shoes. Comfy and the epitome of summer, but a bit flimsy to wear outside of a St Tropez dream sequence from Ab Fab.

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Walk around in them and you feel as if you’re wearing a pair of mashed up brown paper bags that could disintegrate without warning. Still, if you want a piece of summer footwear that’s purely decorative, and your trainers are starting to stink in the heat, then you could do worse than a pair of espadrilles.

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Very “disgraced billionaire tycoon, evading tax on his last remaining yacht”, if that’s the look you seek.

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I’m in two minds as to how I would react to other half wearing a pair of these. Not really manly enough, but combined with the right shorts and tee, could just about be acceptable.

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It’s Fathers Day this weekend, and besides the usual pair of socks or pack of three golf balls, how about going to the Tom’s website for the very best selection of these ‘like them or loathe them’ espidrilles.

… a word from the Editor and Blogger

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Greetings Zipsters.

What an emotional week it has been.

London Bridge and One Love Manchester.

I (along with the rest the World) watched as Ariana Grande walked out on stage last Sunday night, for the One Love Manchester concert.

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Many people commented on the singer’s ability to run in sky-high stiletto heels (a feat many of us have yet to accomplish). Another popular question was: where do you buy the event jumper she was wearing?

I’m not trying to trivialise what’s going on right now. The world is in crisis that’s for sure, but these questions seem to crop up in the media.

Fortunately, those who want to replicate Ariana’s look can purchase the hoodie – or a t-shirt – online, with net proceeds going to the We Love Manchester Emergency Fund. The jumper is available in the colour scheme Ariana wore, or in black with pink lettering on the front.

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Those who want a different style can go for a crew neck with One Love Manchester emblazoned on the sleeves – and the logo comprising a black ribbon and Ariana’s costume ears, that featured so prominently at the concert.

£2 million was raised during the concert itself, which takes the total funds raised since the Manchester terror attack on May 22 to over £10 million. The concert, which was organised by Ariana with millions tuning in around the world, saw the likes of Justin Bieber, Katy Perry, Robbie Williams, Coldplay, Miley Cyrus, Black Eyed Peas, Little Mix and Liam Gallagher (sadly without Noel – scandal) take to the stage at the Emirates Old Trafford to stick two fingers up to terrorism.

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Jumpers are priced at £40, and t-shirts are priced at £20. They can be purchased at the official One Love Manchester shop.

www.onelovemanchestershop.com

Onto this week’s instalment, and we look at the trending barometer, worshipping Beyoncé and the Virtual Reality Boob Job.

Enjoy.

What’s Trending Now?

We all like a quick fix. The same applies to wanting a ‘quick guide’ to what’s ‘in and out’. Instead of having to wait to find out what’s trending, by which point it’s out of fashion.

As we enter Summer, here’s my barometer of what’s in and what’s out of fashion, so that you are bang on trend and not left behind.

OUT

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RED Pedicures.

It’s all about toenails going au naturel, or at least a natural pink sheen. I’m going old school with a French pedi this Balearic season.

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Hotdog Legs

I’m a victim here, as I do like a ‘hotdog leg’ selfie if I’m by a particularly nice pool or beach. Apparently they’re officially ‘over’ says the social government of Instagram.

Box-set Bores

IT’S SUMMER. Get outside.

IN

Trend 13 

Black Coconut Ice Cream

This summer’s most Instagrammable desert, made with coconut ash.

Don’t forget to floss afterwards, otherwise you’ll look like a Victorian chimney sweep.

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Red Tracksuits

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Whether it is Valentino or Adidas, it must be red and must be worn all together, or if you’re too shy, then pair with this season’s long floaty dress and sandals. A festival favourite.

Dance Concierges

Somebody comes to your home, teaches you a dance routine to your favourite Beyonce track. You practise every day and get very fit in the meantime.

Boom.

Worshipping Beyoncé

Now, I’m not saying that Beyoncé isn’t a talented singer. She is. Or an A-list Diva. She is.

But a fashion idol? Tick the box marked “Perhaps”.

Show me a modern girl who hasn’t adopted ‘Single Ladies’ as her ‘break-up’ anthem, just as our mothers’ generation did with Gloria Gaynor’s ‘I Will Survive’. Hell, even our spell checks are programmed to spell Beyoncé’s name with the accent above the É.

Yes, we all love the ‘Bootlicious’ hype that surrounds Beyoncé and her now infamous, well, ‘booty’. However, I think the adoration around ‘Queen Bey’ has perhaps now gone a little too far.

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Junique.co.uk have launched an official ‘worship Beyoncé’ range of items. From cushions and babygrows to iPhone cases and hoodies, all dedicated to Mrs Carter, Sasha Fierce, or whatever she chooses to call herself these days.

Now the Ivy Park ‘athleisure’ range at Topshop was a good move, and I must admit to wearing her joggers and gym attire. But that’s where it should end.

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A hoodie with the bold slogan declaring “It Is Beyoncé’s World We’re Just Living It’ seems rather shallow to me. No matter how ‘crazy in love’ we are with her.

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A tongue in cheek poster displaying ‘The Ultimate Guide to ‘Single Ladies – Put A Ring On It’ (a ‘move-by-move’ instruction guide) is only fit for your toilet. For those longer than usual visits, when that old Vogue issue circa 2003, kept by the loo roll, has bored you to death.

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With a range starting at £20 upwards to £40, I would save these trinkets as last minute stocking fillers for that friend who has just split with her boyfriend. Or insists on singing (yelling) every Beyoncé track, carpool karaoke-style, on nights out.

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If you like it then you shouldda go to:

www.Junique.co.uk

The Virtual Reality Boob Job

Have you ever contemplated a boob job, but felt too daunted to go under the knife? I certainly have.

But forget the chicken fillets, and check out these new virtual reality goggles. They show women exactly what enhanced breasts would look like – without having to set foot inside an operating theatre.

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The device, launched for the first time in the UK at Chelsea clinic Mallucci London, uses a 3D simulation app that allows women to look down at their chest to see how their own breasts would appear with implants of various sizes.

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It is hoped the new goggles may help women, like Katie Price, avoid scenarios where they opt for implants that are too large, or do not look sufficiently natural, meaning they may have to consider reversal surgery.

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A spokesperson for breast implant brand Sebbin, which co-created the goggles with plastic surgery VR pioneers Crisalix, says ‘When you put the goggles on, you step into a virtual reality consultation. Each prospective client can see her own new post-surgery breasts in mirrors by looking sideways. She can also look down to her chest and see her amazing new breasts.’

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Other more traditional methods involve showing breast enhancement candidates images of different types and shapes of implants – via “before and after 2-D pictures”. But this is far less bespoke and it can be harder to know what each ‘op’ would look like on the individual.

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However, the fact that prospective clients are able to see a true reflection of how their post-surgery breasts will look, doesn’t mean they’ll know how it physically feels to carry the equivalent weight of a small child around on their chest forever.

So I’ll stick to the chicken fillets, thanks.

… a word from the Editor and Blogger

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Welcome to Summer 2017. Officially.

I say ‘summer’ because it’s June. It’s hot. And I’m writing this blog poolside in Mallorca, in just swimming costume and Raybans.

Believe it or not, as we landed at Palma, the Balearic heavens opened and it literally rained non-stop for five hours.

What does everyone do when it rains on the Balearic islands?

We go shopping, of course.

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I treated myself to this beautiful boho-style, bohosmock lightweight summer coat, which will be perfect for cooler summer evenings dining at Hostel La Torre in Ibiza or perhaps watching the sunset over Port Adriano in El Toro, Mallorca.

I found a gorgeous boutique which stocked the whole Ibiza and Balearic vibe in one place, in Mallorca. Pom Pom gladiator sandals and baskets make a welcome return this summer, along with floral playsuits and traditional pastel sundresses with pretty panama hats and cool kaftans.

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The shop was called D PAS and it can be found in stunning Palma old town, just near the Catherdral, if you’re venturing to Mallorca this summer.

I’m pretty sure something similar can be found at Las Dalias on the white isle, so don’t panic if Ibiza’s your destination. At 99 euros, it was a bargain, and I definitely heard a few ‘oos’ and ‘ahhs’ when I tried it on in the shop.

Onto this week’s blog and as we kick off festival season with the start of summer, I compile the ultimate festival checklist, check out Speedo swimwear for the body conscious and discover the dark side of the avocado superfruit craze.