Afghan models show off traditional clothing

Amid tight security, over two dozen young models, including six women, strutted down the catwalk in the garden of a private Kabul villa, proudly displaying the traditional clothing and costumes of Afghanistan’s many ethnic groups.

The audience, about 100 men and women, tightly packed the small space on a recent afternoon, but the mood was as bright as the models’ embroidered tunics and scarves – a scene that would have been unimaginable under Taliban rule.

For the organizer, 22-year-old model and fashion designer Ajmal Haqiqi, putting on the show was worth the risk – despite daily threats of militant attacks in this war-weary capital.

Haqiqi says he was motivated by the desire to show off Afghan culture through the nation’s dazzling abundance of traditional garments and regional costumes. If Afghans regain an awareness of their rich heritage, this could help unite them, he said.

”I told myself, if a suicide bomber attacks us, even if I lose my hands and feet, I will continue on the way that I have chosen,” an exuberant Haqiqi told The Associated Press after the event.

Kabul has seen few fashion shows over the past years, mostly catering to international audiences. Haqiqi’s show was the first all-Afghan enterprise: Afghan models showing Afghan traditional clothing to an all-Afghan audience.

However, the idea of women on display remains mostly taboo in Afghanistan, more than 16 years after the 2001 U.S. assault that ousted the Taliban from power after a repressive five-year reign.

Some women still don’t go outside without wearing blue burqas that cover them from head to toe, leaving only mesh over the eyes. Violence against women is still common, and there are reports of women being stoned, executed in public or imprisoned for having affairs with men. Women have even set themselves on fire to escape domestic violence.

Haqiqi’s group, the Haqiqi Modeling Agency, is a relative newcomer on the country’s small fashion scene but he has appeared on national television on various occasions, such as Independence Day, the Persian New Year, known as Nowruz, and the Muslim holidays of Eid al-Adha and Eid al-Fitr.

The agency sells the designs under its own ”Haqiqi Brand,” with about 70 percent of the sales going to foreigners and Afghans living aboard.

Atefa Fasihi, 21, joined Haqiqi’s team two years ago and the show was her debut before a live audience. She acknowledged feeling uneasy as heavily armed security guards protected the villa in a western Kabul neighborhood.

”Everybody is scared, but … we are working to promote our Afghan culture, so I foresee a good future,” Fasihi said.

Husna Sadat, who was in the audience, said the prospect of more such shows is exciting. ”If we can change the mentality of our people from all these years of fighting, then I am sure the people can be ready for a better future,” she said.

Kabul has been battered by attacks over recent months, most claimed by the Taliban but some also by an Islamic State affiliate.

Last month, a Taliban suicide bomber rammed his car packed with explosives into a bus carrying government employees in the same western Kabul neighborhood where Haqiqi’s show took place, an area that is home to several private schools and where many politicians reside. The rush hour attack killed 24 people and wounded 42 others.

And on May 31, the city saw its worst suicide bombing since the Taliban collapse – an attack that killed 150 people and wounded scores.

But it was all smiles at the fashion show.

The male models showed off Afghan variants of the shalwar kameez, the men’s long shirt and pants also known as perahan tunban, with turban, pakul or karakul hats. The women wore colorful gand-e-Afghanis, made from softly flowing and intricately embroidered materials, some with matching scarves.

For Amina Sherzad, also in the audience at Haqiqi’s show last week, the mix of the ethnic garments held a message of acceptance.

”It shows that we can accept each other, a model can be a Tajik or a Hazara but can wear the other’s ethnic clothing,” she said, referring to two prominent ethnic minorities. ”We are the same.”Read more at:celebrity dresses | QueenieAu

Zorpads Founders Launch Company, Look to Extend to Other Categories

Graduating from Harvard Business School might cause some to want to kick off the shoes, but two recent alum looked at that tendency as an opportunity for a viable business. Sprung from what started as a school project, Zorpads, odor-eliminating inserts are being launched by cofounders Taylor Wiegele and Sierra Smith. The pair met at Harvard Business School, where both graduated from in May.

The $5 one-size-fits-all items are sold on the Zorpads site, and between 10,000 and 50,000 units are expected to be sold this year, according to Smith. Once stuck to the insole of a shoe, Zorpads are supposed to last for 60 wearings.

Extending the technology for a variety of types of shoes and for the interior of gym bags are areas being considered for future growth. Wiegele and Smith tested earlier versions at HBS, and finished as semi-finalists in Harvard’s New Venture Competition. That ranking helped to attract the attention of Rough Draft Ventures which is supporting Zorpads with funding and mentoring. RDV cofounder Peter Boyce II noted that the resources at HBS has proved to be a powerhouse for helping early stage founders in launching their startups, pointing to Dia & Co. and Rent The Runway as success stories.

In early October, the General Catalyst-led RDV and Guy Oseary’s and Ashton Kutcher’s Sound Ventures will be helping Forbes with the Global Change The World Competition at Forbes Under 30 Summit in Boston. The winner with the best scalable business idea will walk away with $500,000 in financial support. David Fialkow, cofounder and managing director of General Catalyst, is an ardent supporter of Forbes Under 30 Summit, having described it as “a global beacon for entrepreneurship.”

The fashion sector is not entirely new for either Zorpads cofounder. Smith interned at a start-up that focused on high-end emerging designers and Wiegele interned at Target. She is currently based in New York and he is working out of Los Angeles. They are selling their shoe-enhancing liners in five-packs, 25-packs or as a subscription service. They claim this is the first time that the NASA-tested odor-eliminating material, which is sourced from another company, is being used for consumer purposes as an adhesive activated carbon cloth on a rayon substance, they said.Read more at:QueenieAu | cheap formal dresses

This Danish Countess Opened One of the Biggest Shows at Copenhagen Fashion Week

Walking into the Saks Potts show at Copenhagen Fashion Week last Thursday, the room was buzzing. Cute plastic “SP” logo beach bags were gifted to Erin Wasson, Emily Weiss, Veronika Heilbrunner, and others in the front row. The runway was sky blue and flanked by curtains printed with that monogram, and the sounds of beach waves wafted from the speakers. When the first model walked out, many of the locals cheered and clapped excitedly for her. But it wasn’t a Danish It girl like Pernille Teisbaek or top model Caroline Brasch Nielsen. Rather, it was an older woman with slick-straight hair, pouty lips, and a tan to rival that of Donatella Versace. Her name, as this unknowing American would find out later, is Countess Catherine (Cath) Alexandrine Danneskiold-Samsøe, and she’s a member of the noble family that once ruled the island of Samsøe in Denmark.

Danneskiold-Samsøe looked undeniably fabulous in her oversize sunglasses and opulent pink-striped fox fur coat, and she worked the runway like a pro. Barbara Potts and Cathrine Saks would later explain that they chose her because they admire her bold style and fearlessness when it comes to dressing according to her mood, even if that means looking a little bit over-the-top from time to time. The countess is known throughout the country for her love of luxury and playing it up for the paparazzi and party photographers when she’s in socialite mode. “I was aware that Saks Potts approached me because of my personality, my image, and my attitude,” Danneskiold-Samsøe told Vogue. “We agreed that I would remain myself without being styled like the other models, so I wore my hair and makeup like I would on any ordinary day.”

Danneskiold-Samsøe modeled in the ’70s and ’80s (making her more than old enough to be her fellow catwalkers’ mother) and later ran a contemporary art gallery. She also was the head of a fashion communication business, and is now focused on being an art curator and editor in chief of a local publication titled Beredskab, dedicated to articles on Danish security and defense. “I was so flattered when Barbara and Cathrine asked me to be in the show,” Danneskiold-Samsøe said. “But being a public person who works in both art and journalism, I am very protective when it comes to my image, and I want to bring integrity to any project that I sign up for.” She added, “I am not afraid of being on the stage in the spotlight, but if my look didn’t fit my personality and age, I would have felt ridiculous and uncomfortable. The big fox fur coat certainly matched my personality!”

Danneskiold-Samsøe’s appearance underscored the playful sophistication of the Saks Potts brand as a whole. “They are unpretentiously sexy and modern, but spiced up with a vintage feel,” Danneskiold-Samsøe said. “I think Barbara and Cathrine always have sparkling energy in their collections. They are educating Danish women on how to be effortlessly chic and have a ‘feeling fab’ type of energy while doing so.” Here’s hoping age diversity continues on the runways at New York Fashion Week next month.Read more at:celebrity dresses | formal dresses

DIY Quick Banana Face Pack to Moisturize Dry Skin

banana pack 

(Photo:queenieau.com)Dry skin can get itchy and irritated very easily as it does not retain any moisture which makes it look stretched and flaky. If you are someone who has dry skin naturally, you constantly need to care for it by using hydrating serums and moisturizing creams and when you skip these, your skin reacts by becoming extra dry. However, it is important you also consider natural ingredients for your skincare as these can also fix issues like dry skin by moisturizing from within without any side-effects. They also do not cost a bomb like many creams. Here is a banana face pack that is perfect for dry skin. Try this out.

Take a banana, preferably one that is slightly overripe. Now, take a bowl and mash this banana in it. You can use your fingers or a spoon to do this. Now pour a spoonful of honey in it which will add more moisture to this pack. Banana helps moisturizing your skin from within and honey locks it in. Mix the two ingredients well to form a gooey paste.

Now use your fingers to apply it evenly on your face. This pack should be kept for 10 minutes at least and then you can wash your face with water. Don’t use soap as it can lower the effects. Just pat your skin dry and then apply a sunscreen. This will intensely moisturize your skin and keep it supple for long.

You can use this face pack every alternate day if your skin is too dry or every week if you feel it is too rich for you. The banana and honey combo will wonders for your skin and make it glow as well after a few weeks. So skip all those creams and try this pack today.Read more at:bridesmaid dresses

Eman Shahab Bachani’s artisan shoes have soul

 

(Photo:QueenieAu)Originally from Pakistan, Eman Shahab Bachani has always been inspired by the cultural crafts of her heritage, so in a bid to share them and offer the Canadian fashion scene something truly original, she set up Meraki Design House in 2015. Bachani, who came to Canada six years ago to study at the University of Toronto, wanted her brand to reinterpret Eastern designs for a Western audience. What this has translated into is an online boutique of ethnically inspired shoes and accessories that have developed a loyal following amongst Canadian fashion bloggers and shoppers.

Did you always want to work in fashion or was your foray into the industry spontaneous?

I don’t think I work in fashion per se, because I don’t view my products as fashion items. Fashion items change with trends and seasons, whereas my products are born out of preserving cultural crafts and redesigning them for the modern woman. It was a bit spontaneous to get into it as deep as I have, but I always knew I wanted to have something of my own.

How did you come up with the idea for your designs?

I had people constantly asking me about my personal collection of handcrafted shoes. After quite a bit of research, I found that there was some untapped potential in the Canadian market for international artisan-made products. Lots of hard work later, the idea formulated into Meraki.

Has it been difficult to set up your business?

Just like any business, the first year was nothing but bumps and learning curves. However, I think I have learned so many things that I would have never ever learned working for someone else: from handling the e-commerce aspect to production to managing the finances (still tons of learning left here), but, most importantly, just getting through the hard parts. I think most people get so caught up in the difficulty of things that they barely look at the bigger picture; I’ve tried to never lose sight of it!

Why is working with artisans important to you?

With Meraki, we have always intended to have a two-fold effect: one, providing consumers the choices they won’t find at a mall and, two, in the process, creating demand for crafts and artisan-made products that [help] preserve these practices and create opportunities for work and growth within communities that specialize in such practices.

I feel these practices are crucial to the values and purpose of the brand, and luckily our customers also appreciate that each piece we create is made out of love and passion of a craft, as indicated by the word Meraki itself [a Greek word that means putting your soul, creativity and love into doing something].

What has been your biggest achievement so far?

I feel a bit more accomplished every time I come across someone who already knows about Meraki; it’s all about the small wins.

And where do you want to go from here?

Even though there are new trends every day that draw on cultures of other countries, we are going to keep working on products that preserve the authenticity of the craft and ensure these products make their way to those who appreciate these pieces of wearable art.Read more at:bridesmaid dresses

Instagram summer fashion

Far from the catwalks, photoshoots and gyms, models and other fashion big names have flown to the four corners of the planet for a brief moment of peace before the tumult of Fashion Week in September. And there’s no better moment to analyse their looks and makeup now that the spotlights are off. Supermodel Alessandra Ambrosio, who took time out for trips to Greece and Ibiza earlier this summer, has decamped to Malibu, California, to spend a few quiet moments with her family.

Anything but stingy with the time she spends on Instagram (she has already published 4,800 photos for her 8.6 million followers), Ambrosio regularly shares scenes from her daily life with fans on social networks. Her latest photo was taken during the “Malibu Wine Safari”, an excursion that combines a safari with an opportunity to taste fine wines, in which she appears with members of her family.

The Brazilian celebrity model poses with Stanley: A giraffe who appears to have fallen under the spell of the ravishing 30-year-old. The simplicity of the laidback, chic, and faintly bohemian outfit worn by the top model works like a charm.

Ambrosio wears a short, summery, floral print dress that is bare at the shoulders, one of this summer’s major trends. This is complemented by a restyled Panama hat with a wide brim, the Brazilian’s favourite summer accessory. A simple but very feminine look, ideal for a day in such a natural setting.

A world-renowned model, Ambrosio often features on the covers of high-profile fashion magazines. The Victoria’s Secret Angel doesn’t walk in many catwalk shows, but when she does she displays remarkable presence, as she did at the Ralph & Russo haute couture show last January.Read more at:formal dresses online | semi formal dresses

Australian fashion label under fire for ‘highly inappropriate’ Ganesha outfit

Australian fashion label Soulan Zee was forced to withdraw 'Ganesha Booty' from its website after protests from Hindus. 

(Photo:formal dresses)A small Australian fashion label has drawn condemnation from a leading Hindu body after it produced an outfit that featured an image of the religious deity, Ganesha.

Melbourne-based Soulan Zee said on Tuesday afternoon it would withdraw the outfit from sale and its website after it received a complaint from the Universal Society of Hinduism.

The hot pink outfit included an off-the-shoulder top with flared sleeves and a pair of hotpants, both of which featured a print of Ganesha, whose elephant head makes it one of the most easily recognisable Hindu gods.

The Society’s Rajan Zed, a Hindu cleric based in the US state of Nevada, accused Soulan Zee of producing a ”highly inappropriate” design on his personal website.

”Lord Ganesha was highly revered in Hinduism and was meant to be worshipped in temples or home shrines and not to adorn one’s buttocks and crotch,” Mr Zed wrote.

”Inappropriate usage of Hindu deities or concepts for commercial or other agenda was not okay as it hurt the devotees.”

After contacting Soulan Zee on Tuesday, a spokeswoman said the label never meant to cause any offence.

”After being notified this afternoon of the matter I have since removed all items entailing (sic) the Ganesha print from my website. I had no intention to offend anyone by producing these printed garments and have now stopped production of them, all items are removed from the website,” she said.

According to its website, Soulan Zee launched in 2015 ”with a goal to create quirky, innovative fashion”.

The label has produced custom pieces worn by Miley Cyrus on her Milky Milky Milky tour.

It’s not the first time a company has fallen foul of Hindu sensitivities over the use of its deities for commercial gain.

In June, Queensland-based yoga wear label Flow Yoga Wear was criticised bythe Hindu Council of Australia for featuring Ganesha on a pair of leggings.Read more at:semi formal dresses

IS SMART JEWELLERY A SMART IDEA?

Wearable technology is evolving to look a lot like jewellery but should it be classified as such? COLEBY NICHOLSON asks if this expanding, fashion-focused category has a place in the industry.

Why do people keep inventing stuff? I am over it; I wish they would stop.

I’m told I need something new every day. In fact, the new thing I bought last month is now old or has already been updated. Worse, sometimes before I get to use the new thing there is another new thing.

Surely one of the dumbest ideas ever is a smart fridge!

Apart from the fact that my seven-year-old microwave still displays the wrong time, I’m concerned that if I bought a smart fridge it would have a higher IQ score than me. Actually, I’m sure it would because a few years ago I failed the IQ test for a New Zealand visa.

Needless to say, there’s no way I am buying a smart fridge – or a smart TV for that matter. Imagine what could happen if these two ‘smarties’ ganged-up on me.

Do we really need a fridge that nags us about the use-by date on the milk carton? If I enjoyed being nagged I wouldn’t have kicked my kids out of home!

Don’t get me wrong, much of the gadgetry, apps and new technology are great in isolation. They can definitely improve our lives but it all becomes overwhelming when coupled with everything else we need to deal with on a daily basis. Wouldn’t it have been better to invent smart people first?

What’s all this got to do with jewellery?

Well, Jeweller first started writing about smart jewellery – not to be confused with smartwatches – around 2013. At the time it caused a little industry debate about the definition of jewellery – especially fine jewellery – with many retailers suggesting that these newly-developed products were, perhaps, not jewellery, and to a large extent we agreed.

Some items were easy to identify. For example, if products such as USB necklaces were being promoted as jewellery because they were covered in coloured gemstones then we decided to classify them as ‘bejewelled’.

Our logic was simple: just because something looked like jewellery didn’t mean it should be called jewellery. We considered the purpose of the item and, if its primary function – the basis on which it was promoted – was something other than adornment, then we did not consider it jewellery.

If you think about it, the first smart (calculator) watches appeared in 1975 courtesy of Pulsar, which, surprise, surprise, was partly owned by IT company Hewlett & Packard at the time.

So, for more than 40 years, watches have evolved from being straight timepieces to offering other technological functions and it hasn’t stopped retailers from selling them.

Blurred lines

Therefore, you’re probably beginning to see that the ‘primary function’ line can get blurry. Indeed, some years ago I argued that it was near impossible to define fine jewellery and fashion jewellery, even though many retailers were pooh-poohing the enormous rise of fashion jewellery sales, courtesy of you know who!

If we can’t clearly define and differentiate between fine and fashion jewellery, then can we really define and differentiate between smart jewellery and jewellery?

Therein lies the point: some traditionalists would happily argue that various items of smart jewellery are not jewellery at all because they do ‘other’ things as well as adorn; however, is it that clear-cut anymore?

Synthetic diamonds are slowly but surely being accepted by consumers for various reasons, and some savvy marketers are boasting about the stone’s background as ‘man-made’, as opposed to ‘mined’.

That is, synthetic diamond manufacturers are beginning to use the ‘man-made’ aspect as a selling point, mainly around sustainability. They are probably targeting the Millennial generation. Who would have predicted that a few years ago?

As our story The Smart Jewellery Breakthrough discovers, the market is starting to see smart jewellery – or wearable technology, as it is often called – take on a strong fashion focus. The products are evolving from a ‘functional’ item to ‘form and function’, emphasising emotion, bond, art and fashion; all the things traditional jewellery does.

The interesting thing is that, just like the debate about attempting to define the difference between fine and fashion jewellery, our opinions don’t count. The consumer ultimately decides what makes your cash register ting!

Don’t forget also that times change and if you ever wanted proof of that then think back to the history of jewellery as an item of fashion and/or adornment. After all, wasn’t the first jewellery composed of seashells, seeds and string?

I am not sure that smart jewellery will become a mainstay of jewellery retail stores; however, a decade or two ago, retailers did not touch costume (fashion) jewellery. Even worse, it was only about 10 years ago that many Australian jewellers pooh-poohed Pandora and yet today, it’s arguably the biggest jewellery brand in the world.

Update – I’ve changed my mind and I have just decided to buy the latest smart TV; apparently it doesn’t show Bill Shorten!Read more at:formal dresses online australia | bridesmaid dresses

Exhibition explores legacy of black fashion designers

As a girl, Tracy Reese thought she might be an architect. Then she caught the fashion bug. She knew, of course, that designers who are black like her existed. She used to snap up Willi Smith at The Limited growing up in Detroit. She headed to New York with high hopes. “When I first came to New York my eyes were really opened to the breadth of the industry, but I was looking for our place in it,” recalled Reese, who has dressed first lady Michelle Obama.

Reese, along with other noted designers of color, Jeffrey Banks and Laura Smalls among them, spoke at the opening of a new exhibition, “Black Fashion Designers,” at The Museum of the Fashion Institute of Technology. The show offers a glimpse into exactly how impactful designers of color have been through the decades, including Reese, Banks and Smalls. Smalls has seen her dresses worn seven times by the departing Obama.

They also know the challenges of striving for beauty in design while attempting to break through in an industry still dominated by whites. “Designers of color don’t get a lot of publicity and so many of the businesses are not sizable. It’s tough to get recognition,” Reese said, standing amid rows of mannequins spanning decades of diverse black voices in fashion.

Business training

Reese’s father provided initial startup money when she first went into business for herself. “I had to go out and get loans. I did a lot of paper writing. A lot of business planning. I had to have a lot of assistance because I didn’t have business training,” she said. “That’s usually what a banker wants to see, or a financial person. It’s a kind of closed industry. And as difficult as it is for a person of color, you really have to rise through the ranks high enough to grab the attention of the people who are holding the purse strings.”

Smalls, who grew up in Queens, knew at 8 or 9 that she wanted to be a fashion designer. She went to the High School of Art and Design, followed by Parsons School of Design. “When I graduated Parsons, being African-American, it was not easy for me to get a job. It was just not easy. I couldn’t fathom that I would be able to support myself with my own collection. They don’t say anything. I mean, you know. It’s just you don’t get the job. I could tell you a horrible story, but I won’t,” said Smalls, who worked in relative obscurity until 2012, when Obama first wore some of her pieces.

Banks, at 63 the oldest of the three, has focused on menswear over his decades in the business, adding home decor and childrenswear in more recent years selling on HSN. “I was very lucky in that I met Ralph Lauren when I was 16. I started working for him when I was 17, three weeks out of high school and two months before I started college.” Even so, it wasn’t easy.

“I remember when I was 10 years old and talking to a former nursery school teacher and telling her that I wanted to be a fashion designer and she said, ‘Well whoever heard of a black fashion designer,’ and she was black,” said Banks, who was raised in Washington, DC. “I was so angry, even at 10 years old, to think why would someone say something like that? Why should that be an impediment to anything? I think it made me even more determined to become a designer,” he said.

Great-granddaughter

Banks looked to those who came before him, but his eye was on the beauty of their creations, not necessarily their skin color. “Growing up, Stephen Burrows, when I was in high school, he was just starting to design and I thought his designs were extraordinary, and that was way before I knew he was black,” Banks said. “I just thought they were great looking clothes. At the end of the day that’s really what counts.”

Jacqueline Bouvier must have thought so, too. In 1953, she wore an ivory silk taffeta gown to marry the young Sen. John F. Kennedy. It was designed by Ann Lowe, already a noted dressmaker for high society patrons in New York. Lowe was also the great-granddaughter of an enslaved woman and an Alabama plantation owner. She learned to sew at the knees of her mother and grandmother. “Yet she embraced all of the beauty of European couture,” said Andre Leon Talley, the former editor-at-large for Vogue who remains a fashion pundit and served on the show’s advisory committee.

The exhibition is intended as a sampling, not an all-consuming account of black contributions to fashion, but it does offer a wide range, from a modest ivory wedding gown by Lowe (not Jackie’s) to a risque royal blue satin Playboy bunny uniform by Zelda Wynn Valdes. Among others represented: Pyer Moss, Duro Olowu, Kevan Hall, Andre Walker, Lawrence Steele and Patrick Kelly.

And the legacy?

“The legacy is perseverance, and of struggling through many decades of culture,” Talley said. “Struggling black individualism. Struggling in a country that perhaps did not recognize black people as designers. You have a rainbow of success based on innate quality and innate technique. They had dreams, and they put their dreams into fashion.”Read more at:QueenieAu | bridesmaid dresses

Tips to keep cool and carry on this summer

When former U.S. president Jimmy Carter was taken to St. Boniface Hospital last month suffering from dehydration, it was a timely reminder that heat-related illness can strike anyone at any time.

Carter, of course, was able to recover and return to the Habitat for Humanity site where he had fallen ill. Nonetheless, his experience underscores the importance of taking precautions to ward off heat-related illnesses such as heat stroke, exhaustion, cramps and dehydration.

Conditions such as these result from exposure to hot temperatures, especially if exposure is prolonged, activity is vigorous and humidity is high. As a result, it is important to recognize the early warning signs of potential trouble.

The Winnipeg Regional Health Authority’s Sun Safety Guide outlines categories of heat-related illness and the accompanying symptoms. They are:

Mild dehydration: Loss of energy; little urine or very dark urine. This is treated by moving to a cool place and drinking water. There is no need to see a health-care provider. When hydrated, your urine should be almost clear.

Heat cramps: Muscular pain or spasms usually in the legs or abdomen, usually occurring after significant exertion, are an early sign of heat illness. This is treated by moving to a cool place and drinking a glass of cold water every 15 minutes until you feel better. There is no need to see a health-care provider unless symptoms persist or worsen.

Heat exhaustion: Moist, cool, clammy skin, which may be pale or red in colour; headache, nausea or vomiting; dizziness; fatigue. May have low-grade fever. Move to a cool place, and lie down with your feet elevated. Drink a glass of cold water every 15 minutes until you feel better. See a health-care provider as soon as possible.

Heat stroke (which can be life-threatening): Dry, red, hot skin; drowsy, confused, decreased level of consciousness; nausea, vomiting; fever, shallow breathing; rapid pulse. This is a medical emergency, and 911 should be called. Move the person to a cool place, and fan and sponge with cold water. If the person is unconscious, immerse them in cool water. If they are conscious, give them cold water to drink. Remember, sweating is a sign you are hot and need to drink cool fluids. Not sweating when you should be is a danger sign for heat stroke.

It’s also important to remember some people are at higher risk for heat-related illnesses than others.

While everyone is susceptible to heat and high humidity, children (especially infants), teenage athletes, the elderly and people with a chronic health condition are particularly vulnerable. Older people are at higher risk of heat illness, as temperature regulation and physical functioning may be altered. Children normally have a higher level of body heat, absorb more heat, sweat less, and are less likely to drink sufficient fluids and adjust to hot temperatures.

If you are caring for a child or older person, ensure they are drinking cool fluids regularly. If you have a baby under six months of age, offer more milk than usual through breast or bottle-feeding. If your baby is older than six months, you may offer cool water.

It is also worth noting people taking certain medications may also be more vulnerable to heat illness, as are people who are overweight, and those with chronic illnesses such as cardiovascular disease, respiratory illness or kidney disease.

There are, of course, some things you can do to keep cool this summer.

Here are few tips from the Sun Safety Guide:

● For every 25 minutes in the sun, take a five-minute shade and water break.

● Avoid drinks with caffeine or alcohol, as they may cause dehydration.

● Where possible, plan activities during cooler times of the day. Avoid being outdoors or taking part in strenuous activities during the hottest period of the day, which normally occurs between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m.

● Use SPF 15 or higher sunscreen to avoid sunburn. Sunburn interferes with the body’s cooling process.

● If your home isn’t air-conditioned, cool down by using fans, spending time in the coolest room of your home or taking a cool (not cold) shower, bath or sponge bath. Try to spend some time each day in a cool place, such as an air-conditioned public building such as a library.

● Eat smaller meals more frequently.

Diana Doyle-Zebrun is a registered nurse and manager of clinical and quality initiatives with Health Links.Read more at:QueenieAu | cheap formal dresses online