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Versace Fall 2018 Runway

images: Imaxtree

See all the Vionnet Fall 2018 looks from the runway.


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On the Road Again: Heading to Arctic Europe

This week has been a strange one here at The Adventure Blog. I spent the first part it with an unexpected trip to visit family and the second part playing catch-up after I got home. Now, I’m preparing to leave once again, this time on a journey that promises to be a grand adventure.

Later today I set out for Arctic Europe and over the course of the next week I’ll be traveling across Finland,…

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This software startup had its best year ever and the CEO says the end of net neutrality is a big reason why

ajit pai

  • HotSpot Shield, one of the most popular VPNs in the country, saw more downloads in 2017 than ever before
  • The company’s CEO says this is due to high-profile hacks and the FCC’s crackdown on net neutrality.
  • The U.S. is now HotSpot Shield’s largest market.

The FCC’s repeal of net neutrality has infuriated internet users across the country. But it’s been great for business if you’re VPN provider.

According to the CEO of AnchorFree, a provider of a popular virtual private networking product, the company had its best year ever in 2017. HotSpot Shield, the company’s VPN product, saw more than 100 million downloads in 2017 alone, bringing the company’s total user base up to 600 million worldwide.

A VPN, or a virtual private network, is a service that masks internet traffic by rerouting it through a third-party server. It’s a popular tool in places like China, allowing users to circumvent the government firewall that blocks certain sites.

David Gorodyansky, CEO of Anchor Free, told Business Insider he saw enormous — and unprecedented — spikes in new users immediately after the U.S. Federal Communications Commission rolled back net neutrality regulations. 

There were similar spikes following Congress’s vote to allow Internet Service Providers to sell user data and after the massive Equifax hack, Gorodyansky says. 

These recent high-profile events have caused users to lose trust in both private companies and the government to safeguard their data, he says.

“Over the last 18 months, people are starting to realize that the government won’t protect them and that Google and Facebook want to use their data as currency. People are realizing that they need to take this into their own hands,” Gorodyansky says.

A major surge in US customers

Before 2017, nearly 80% of HotSpot Shield’s users were located outside of the U.S., mostly in countries where internet usage is restricted or moderated. All of that changed in the past year. Now, users in the U.S. outnumber users abroad, which Gorodyansky said was unexpected because VPNs typically appeal to international users.

“Americans are starting to realize that security and privacy are important,” he said.

AnchorFree David Gorodyansky

Gorodyansky said he first noticed a big spike in U.S. users in March after Congress voted to allow internet service providers, like Comcast and AT&T, to sell web and app usage to third parties without getting permission from the user.

Later that year Equifax got hacked, exposing the personal information of millions, and Gorodyansky said even more users flocked to HotSpot Shield. 

“HotSpot Shield doesnt protect Equifax from getting hacked, but Equifax raised public awareness and people were like ‘I don’t want my identity being stolen over public WiFi,'” he added.

The final surge in users happened in December after the Republican-controlled FCC rolled back net neutrality regulations, which mandated that ISPs treat all internet traffic equally. A VPN product prevents an internet service provider from seeing which websites a user is visiting, so there’s less likelihood that the provider can block or slow down their connection to any given site. 

“If the FCC doesn’t want to regulate net neutrality. That’s fine. We wish they did, but they don’t want to, that’s OK,” Gorodyansky said. “We’re basically going to solve this from a technology point of view.”

HotSpot Shield has climbed the App Store rankings and is now the top grossing productivity app for iPhones, according to App Annie, an app market research company. In fact, half of the top 10 grossing iOS productivity apps are VPNs – perhaps a testament to how users are increasingly looking to security products.

“I think there’s been this transition where people are starting to trust big corporations and the government less with their information,” Gorodyansky said. “Whether it’s Equifax or Target or Comcast, people don’t want them owning their data.”

SEE ALSO: AnchorFree CEO barely survived the 2008 market crash — now his startup has 400 million users, and it’s going head-to-head with Facebook

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7 Things to Know Before Getting Hair Extensions

Image: Imaxtree

The runways have decreed it: Super long hair is having a moment. For those of us who chopped our hair into bobs, lobs or went for the full shave, that’s a bit of a problem. If we want to participate in the long hair trend now — and not in a few years when our short haircuts have grown out — extensions are an option.

Hair extensions used to be the stuff of celebrities but Instagram’s obsession with ever-changing hair has helped make extensions more known to us non-famous folk. While most of us know that extensions are a way to get long hair without popping hair vitamins and waiting for our strands to grow, the extension attachment process, as well as the upkeep, aren’t as commonly known.

Extensions can be as high maintenance as natural strands, if not more so. Not to mention that those long, flowing locks can come with a hefty price tag. To spare you finding out the full details after the fact, we asked the experts to give us the full details. Before booking that salon appointment find out all there is to know about getting hair extensions.

The Basics

Sorry, but anyone with a buzz cut is going to have to wait until their hair grows out a bit before getting extensions. Chelsea Malmquist, extensions expert and senior stylist at SEVEN salon, explains that hair must be a minimum of 4 inches before getting extensions. Taliah Waajid adds that hair must be long enough to braid or make a cornrow base for extensions to be applied.

Waajid also considers the health of hair to be one of the most important factors. If hair isn’t healthy, it must be treated before any extensions are applied to it. For those craving longer lengths, she suggests wearing a wig in the meantime while hair is getting treated for extensions.

As with most things, understanding the process and choosing a reputable extensions expert are essential. Malmquist explains, “Stylists aren’t just born knowing how to work with extensions. Experience is key.” Have a regular hairstylist you have a great relationship with? If they don’t do extensions, ask for a recommendation.

Getting a consultation can help you finalize your decision and clear up any further questions. Malmquist warns that hair extensions aren’t cheap and once using them, it can be hard to go back to natural hair.

The Cost

The prices of hair extensions can vary greatly. Malmquist says that it depends on the quality of hair, the method extensions are applied and the experience level of the stylist. She says hair extensions start at a few hundred and cost as much as a few thousand. Waajid seconds this, adding that they’re between $75 and $300 on average and can go as high as $2,000. Just a bit more than a haircut, eh?

Types of Hair Extensions

There are natural and synthetic hair extensions and it’s important to consider the differences between them. Waajid states that natural hair extensions are usually made from human hair. Most natural extensions are processed to permanently take the shape of the desired hair texture, e.g., straight, wavy, curly, kinky, etc. Of course, the more expensive the extensions, the better they have been processed. She warns that some less expensive hair extensions can be mixed with synthetic fibers or even animal hair.

In contrast, synthetic hair is made from plastic fibers. It’s also processed for the desired texture. Waajid explains it’s mostly used in pre-prepped styles like crochet, faux loc hair and pre-curled styles. Malmquist adds that it has an unnatural feel and you can differentiate human and synthetic hair based on price, maintenance, texture and longevity.

One big issue is that synthetic hair will melt when heat styled (e.g., flatironed). Waajid says that Kanekalon is a high-end synthetic fiber that she has found to be the best fiber for braiding hair, especially for those wanting to heat style. Kanekalon extensions will straighten and take the shape of rollers without melting.

Hair Extension Applications

There aren’t just different hair extensions, there are also differences in how they’re applied. Common hair extension applications include micro-link hair extensions, weave hair extensions, tape hair extensions and pre-bonded/fusion extensions.

Micro-link hair extensions: These are also known as micro-bead or loop hair extensions. Malmquist says they’re applied by looping (get it?) the extensions through natural hair and clamping it down with a pair of pliers and a metal bead.

Weave hair extensions: “Weave” is a common term used to mean hair extensions, but there are specific weave extensions. They are applied by braiding the natural hair into a cornrow and using a needle and cotton thread to attach the extra lengths.

Tape-in hair extensions: These are classified as semi-permanent extensions. They’re pre-taped and sandwiched on either side of natural hair.

Pre-bonded extensions: These are also referred to as fusion hair extensions. They are attached to natural hair using different adhesives, such as keratin and glue.

Clip-in extensions: Waajid reveals that these can be the least damaging to hair if applied correctly because they are not attached to a braid. They are clipped to hair and quick to install.

Net weaving extensions: Net weaving is another weaving technique where a net is sewn on the base of the cornrows, then the weave weft extensions are sewn to the net. This prevents additional stress on the hair.

Crochet extensions: Crochet extensions are done using the same technique used to apply weft weaving, but the extensions are not sewn on to the braids. They are applied using a latch hook needle.

In terms of the best method for attaching hair extensions, Malmquist says, “There is not one type of bond that is better than the other. The type of hair and method is going to determine what would [be] best for each client.” She adds that fine hair generally does best with tape-in extensions, whereas the other options are better for coarse locks.

How to Prevent Damage

According to Malmquist, “Hair extensions, or any foreign object attached to hair, can cause a certain degree of damage, however, the damage can be minimized with proper maintenance.” Having a trained stylist who is familiar with the different types of extensions and what is best for different hair types is key. Once the extensions are in, watch out for hair loss, red and/or irritated scalp, bald patches or matted extensions. Also, pay attention to headaches. Extensions that are attached too tightly or are too heavy can cause head pain.

In terms of styling, Waajid cautions against getting a style that will be too heavy for the area where the extensions are being added. This is especially important for finer hair. She states that interlocking, crochet styles work best for thin hair because they stay pretty close to the scalp and are “kind of one unit.”

And be gentle. Avoid tugging or aggressively brushing hair.

Maintaining Hair Extensions

Like unicorn dye jobs, hair extensions require some TLC to keep them and natural hair looking their best. It will depend on the style and kind of hair used for extensions, but Waajid stipulates that everyone should have a hair care regimen for the natural hair and scalp under the extensions.

Typically, Malmquist advises waiting 48 hours after hair extensions have been put in before washing. After that, maintenance is in order. The scalp can easily be forgotten about but it’s key to look after it as dirt and perspiration build up, which can make extensions tangle. Malmquist reveals that once the hair tangles, it’s likely that the extensions will fall out.

To prevent that from happening, use a good quality shampoo and conditioner specifically formulated for use on natural and synthetic hair. The hairstylist should offer product suggestions. Malmquist’s current favorite is the SEVEN Haircare KENTE BOND System ($88).

Before washing, hair should be detangled with a detangling brush, starting from the ends and working up to the roots. Strands should then be washed in a downward motion from the roots to the ends. Malmquist warns, “It’s important to remember that rubbing can cause the hair to tangle, [which can lead to extensions slipping out] so make sure to rinse hair thoroughly.”

Conditioning is also very important because hair extensions don’t receive the natural oils from the scalp. Just be very careful because conditioner should never be applied near the root area and the attachments. This will cause the attachments to slip and the extensions to fall out.

Hair should also be gently dried and detangled. No matter how tempting, avoid going to bed with wet hair. Malmquist suggests putting hair into pigtails or a braid overnight.

Hairstylists should also instruct clients when to return for adjustments. Malmquist reveals that follow-up appointments normally happen every three to six weeks.

How to Remove Hair Extensions

There may come a time when you grow tired of your glossy extensions. In that case, it’s important to remove them properly. Malmquist cautions against attempting to remove them at home. “The hair extension removal process is not recommended to be performed by the client — you could end up doing way more harm than good!” she says. Go to your stylist to get them removed properly to save hair from extra damage.

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The New Yorker Publishes Riveting Story About Henry Worsley’s Doomed Antarctic Expedition

In 2016, British polar explorer Henry Worsley lost his life while attempting a solo, unsupported crossing of the Antarctic continent. He was attempting to become the first to make such a journey, which remains one of the biggest challenges that remain for adventurers traveling in that part of the world. It is impossible to know exactly what that journey was like, but now – thanks to an unlikely…

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Brendan Fraser says he was groped by a Hollywood executive and that it made him 'retreat' from his acting career

brendan fraser

  • Actor Brendan Fraser said in a recent interview with GQ that he was groped in 2003 by Philip Berk, a former president of the Hollywood Foreign Press.
  • Fraser said that the incident made him “retreat” from the Hollywood spotlight. 
  • Berk, who previously described the incident in a memoir as being done in jest, told GQ that Fraser’s version of the incident was a “total fabrication.” He also admitted to writing an “apology” letter to Fraser.
  • The HFPA said on Friday that it was “previously unaware” of the incident as Fraser alleged it, and that it is currently investigating the matter.


Actor Brendan Fraser said in a recent interview with GQ that he was groped by a former president of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, Philip Berk, after an HFPA luncheon in 2003. Fraser said that the incident played a part in his decision to “retreat” from the Hollywood spotlight.

Fraser, who starred in a number of leading roles in successful movies throughout the 1990s, including “The Mummy,” has been largely absent from the same leading film roles since the early 2000s.

The 49-year-old actor told GQ that the incident was one of the sources of his career’s standstill. Fraser recounted the incident in detail, which GQ reported that Berk had previously described in a memoir as being done in jest.

His left hand reaches around, grabs my ass cheek, and one of his fingers touches me in the taint. And he starts moving it around,” Fraser said. “I felt ill. I felt like a little kid. I felt like there was a ball in my throat. I thought I was going to cry.”

Fraser said the experience “made me retreat. It made me feel reclusive.” He said that he wondered if the HFPA had blacklisted him, as he was rarely invited to the Golden Globe Awards after the incident. 

Berk responded to GQ in an email, saying that Fraser’s account of the incident was “a total fabrication.”

Fraser also said that his representatives asked the HFPA for a written apology. Berk acknowledged to GQ that he wrote an “apology” letter to Fraser, but said that it “admitted no wrongdoing, the usual ‘If I’ve done anything that upset Mr. Fraser, it was not intended and I apologize.'”

The HFPA responded to the story in a statement to Deadline on Friday, saying that it was “ppreviously unaware” of the incident as Fraser alleged it, and is currently “investigating further details surrounding the incident.”

SEE ALSO: The best current TV show on each network — from ABC to FX to Netflix

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