HoMedics STRETCH Back Stretching Mat

I’m probably the most casual yoga practiser there is, I find it helpful for anxiety and stress but never have the time to fit it into my day.

The HoMedics STRETCH Back Stretching Mat is perfect for the lazy yoga person like me. It mimics yoga style stretches by inflating air bladders within the mat’s fabric, giving you the affects of a good yoga session in a range of 10 – 15 minute sessions.

When I first laid down to try out this stretch mat I admit I was a little sceptical. How can a massage mat give the effects of a yoga workout, and surely lying down on the floor is just a little too relaxing?

However once I got over the comical effects of the first try (I defy anyone to give this a go and not burst out laughing the first time!), the effects are pretty damn good. It leaves you with that sweet ache that you get after stretching, and leaves you feeling relaxed and tension free. There’s even a comfy pillow to rest your head on which means you can lay back and really relax (yes, it’s definitely possible to fall asleep…).

There are four sessions, each with different benefits to your muscles and back: Twist, Flow, Energise and Stretch. Twist and Flow are the ones I’ve used the most, they’re pretty rigorous so I’d avoid if you’re back is sensitive, but definitely iron out any knots and tension in your back.

Energise I feel is a bit of a gimmick (I definitely didn’t feel particularly energised lying down on the floor!), but stretch is definitely a good one if you work in an office all day like me – perfect for easing those neck pains that come from gazing into a computer screen.

This stretch mat folds up nicely so can be stored away, and are relatively portable if you wanted to take it to a friends for a giggly yoga session. It’s very durable, and the fabric is soft and comfortable to lay on, plus this can double up as a yoga mat if you fancied doing a session beforehand.

It comes with a hefty price tag, but yoga classes can be expensive so this is a nice substitute if you want to save the cash long-term. It’s also a good investment if you have regular back-pain, not that this substitutes a visit to the doctor.

You can buy this directly through the HoMedics website, or via Amazon. Definitely a good one to try if you find yoga difficult to fit into your schedule and like your home massage gadgets!

Advertisements

Shaving Subscriptions, are they worth it?

Shaving has always been the bane of my life; it’s time consuming, expensive and I always forget to pick up a new razor before mine goes blunt.

I’m a sucker for a subscription service, I rely on BirchBox and Amazon Prime more than I’d care to admit, so I thought I’d look into a subscription for razor blades to save me the hassle.

I’d heard of brands producing razor blades on subscription for men, but I wasn’t sure if a version for women existed. I did some Googling and found Friction Free Shaving (FFS), a relatively new razor subscription service for women.

The ethos behind the brand is protecting consumers from being ripped off by larger retailers on their razor blades, and encouraging women to change their blades more often to prevent bacteria build up and infection. In a nutshell, they offer a convenient way of shaving that doesn’t feel like a chore.

I thought I’d give it a go, and was pleasantly surprised by how easy the subscription was to set up. Some other subscriptions on the market seemed confusing, whereas FFS made the process very easy. You receive a delivery once a month with 4 individual blades, one for each week, and you can amend / pause your subscription at any time.

When I received my first box I was very impressed. I went for the ‘Samantha’, the slightly more expensive option of the two on the website, but still only £7 a month (having looked at the website this has now increased to £8 a month for new members).

The packaging is small and simple, and easily fits through the postbox. It also makes for a good place to store the razors until you them each week.

IMG_20170729_172438_01

The Samantha razor comes with 5 blades and a vitamin E lubricating strip to help moisturise. I can confirm that these razors provide a close shave, and I haven’t had any bad experiences with cuts or nicks.

The rose-gold handle comes free with the first box, and the 90-degree pivot head makes shaving very easy.

I think this subscription model is a great idea, it makes shaving much more convenient and cost-effective than buying razors on the highstreet. I never have to worry about running out of razors, and if I’m going away for a few weeks I can just take the box with me and I’m all good.

I used to spend around £12 a month on razor blades, so this service easily saves me  around £5 a month plus the hassle of remembering to go out and buy more.

My subscription has been going strong for 8 months, and I definitely won’t be cancelling any time soon.

FFS also make it very easy to amend / cancel your subscription; I paused mine for a month a little while ago and their team responded quickly when I messaged them on Twitter and were very helpful.

My only qualm with this service is that the shaving cream that they offer as an add-on to your subscription is very expensive. At £6 for 100ml I may as well carry on using hair conditioner to shave my legs; perhaps it’s a miracle product but I’d be far more likely to add this to my subscription if it was more affordable.

I can’t confirm whether FFS is any better than other razor subscriptions out there, but it works really well for me and I’d highly recommend if you’re looking for a cheaper, more convenient way of shaving.

Edit: I’ve also written another Friction Free Shaving review all about their new ‘Rose’ razor, check it out if you’re interested in the latest launch of this brand. You can also use my friction free shaving discount code N62WCJ which will give you 25% off the first box (follow the link: http://ffs.co.uk/r/?r=N62WCJ). I hope you love it as much as I do!