The Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Arrives

July 10 2016

Today, the Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer embargo is officially lifted and the product slated as revolutionising the drying of hair is officially hitting shelves in Myer and David Jones stores around the country. The question which remains is this: could this hair dryer – or any hair dryer! – be worth the $699 price tag?

What’s so revolutionary?

Sir James Dyson and his team of 103 engineers (not a typo) were looking to fix three areas where they felt regular hair dryers don’t measure up: the noise, the weight and the burning of hair.

600 prototypes and 86 million development dollars later (yep again, not a typo), they have tested their machine on more than 1625kms of hair and delivered the Supersonic:

Dyson Supersonic Hairdryer all angles

The Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer: changing the hair drying game for all time

The supersonic details:

  • The brains trust have put the motor in the handle, overcoming the balance issue that regular hair dryers can present with.
  • The weight has come in at 618g, not the lightest hair dryer not the market but certainly manageable when wrangling wet locks.
  • The output air temperature is measured 20 times every second (still not a typo) to keep it under control and ensure air doesn’t exceed temperatures which may burn hair or scalp.
  • Speed and temperature are controlled with the buttons on the base of the head/donut/monocle: 3 speed settings enable fast drying, regular drying or styling. 4 heat settings available are 100°C fast drying and styling, 80°C regular drying, 60°C gentle drying and 28 °C constant cold.
  • Thanks to ‘heat shield technology’ the hairdryer and accessories remain not-burny to touch at all times
  • Speaking of accessories, it comes with three:
Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Accessories (from the top) a smoothing nozzle, a styling concentrator and a diffuser.

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer Accessories (from the top) a smoothing nozzle, a styling concentrator and a diffuser.

  • The accessories attach to the head/donut/monocle via magnet, making them very quick and simple to change.
  • The air inlet is at the base of the handle. Accidentally covering the inlet won’t wreck the hair dryer but may eventually reduce the outflow of air.
  • The noise is dramatically reduced compared with a regular hair dryer, sounding mostly like a whooshing of air with the hint of pitch in the background. Certainly easy enough to talk over.

The Verdict

Enquiring yesterday at my local Myer, the combined curiosity of the electronics team and me resulted us busting one out to have a play with (to hell with the embargo!). It is extremely comfortable to hold, at the highest setting it’s still amazingly quiet – not silent but really pretty incredible. The accessories look great and are easy to attach – the cord is super long, 2.7m.

Early user reviews on the web are suggesting that the highly controlled air temp is making a difference to appearance of hair – a finish similar to a professional blow dry with higher shine, more volume and hair sitting straighter thanks to the highly praised accessories.

Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer in action

The Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer in action

So yes, it’s absolutely the best hair dryer on the market.
But is it worth 700 of your dollars?

I’m not sure. Some possible justifications I’ve been trying out include:

  1. It’s great if you have a partner who works night shift who is regularly woken by a hair dryer! (What price can you put on sleep!?)
  2. If you have fluffy pets that you blow dry, the highly reduced noise and inability to burn will undoubtedly make that experience better.
  3. Thermomix! I don’t have one of those and that is a similarly amazing/overpriced appliance! People buy those!
  4. JS asked me if it cuts down drying time because that could ultimately be justified with a value… there are hair dryers that will dry your hair faster, but probably burn it along the way. So in terms of efficiency, it’s got it there too.

What I do know is this: after reading the hype, the specs and having a play with the real deal, I absolutely want one. But if I get one, I’m probably not going to tell anyone because #judgement on the outrageous price tag.

How about you? Is it on your wish list? What price can you put on good hair? Have you ever bought something you’ve told noone about because of the price? Love to talk more in the comments below! 

3 courageous women who won our hearts this week

June 10 2016

I have a list that comes with me where ever I go. It’s call ‘the best moments for women’ and I compile it all year to bring you a bumper post on International Women’s Day celebrating all the most fist-pumping, moving, significant moments that move us forward. It’s gotta be a pretty special moment to make it to the list and some weeks there aren’t any that made the grade. But this week there were THREE! Three courageous American women who took over our social media feeds this week in ways so significant that I couldn’t wait six months to acknowledge them.

1. Hillary Clinton clinches the democratic nomination

No doubt over the next six months we’ll hear plenty about Hillary Clinton and Trump as the USA heads toward their election in November, but this week provided a significant moment in the campaign and indeed America’s history books, as Hillary Clinton became the nation’s first female presidential nominee.

Hillary certainly has critics and criticisms, but no one can contest that she’s done the hard yards in many ways to reach this point. If Hillary Clinton ever writes a book on resilience, I’m buying it on pre-release.

I cannot even begin to imagine what this moment felt like for her.

Hillary Clinton Democratic Nomiee 2016 -  Courageous Women

I hope we can see her have an even bigger moment in November! As if Hils didn’t already have a gigantic enough week, she reminded us she’s also a total badass with this tweet (check out the number of retweets!):

Hillary Clinton delete your account -  Courageous Women

#imwithher

2. An anonymous student becomes the voice of the millions of nameless, faceless, sexual assault victims

Last Saturday, Buzzfeed published the approximately 7,000 word statement of a Stanford university student who was raped by then University swim star, Brock Turner, in 2015. After a protracted legal battle and despite a maximum 14 year sentence, Turner was sentenced to only 6 months. The presiding judge saying any more would “have a severe impact on him”. The victim chose to address Turner in court and read from an incredibly moving, graphic, gut wrenching and heroic statement about her experience, in which she was dragged unconscious behind a dumpster, stripped naked, sexually assaulted before two passing by strangers intervened. Her statement describes how she learned of what happened to her later, after, in hospital and the impact it’s had since. The statement starts with this sentence “You don’t know me, but you’ve been inside me, and that’s why we’re here today.”

Now read millions of times, including on tv and in live readings by politicians – the anonymous author has become the voice of sexual assault victims everywhere. Her courage to stand in court and address her attacker with such powerful, poignant and persuasive language has forever changed the discussion on sexual assault.

Just as powerfully as her statement begins, it’s finishes: “To girls everywhere, I am with you.”

We are with you -  Courageous Women

And us with you.

3. The Hot Dog Princess won hearts everywhere

The third exceptional lady-moment of the week happened at a dance school in North Carolina. The dance class had a ‘Princess Day’ where the girls were invited to come along to class dressed as their favourite princess… which they dutifully did, all except 5 year old Ainsley Turner who opted instead to wear her hot dog costume.

Hot Dog Princess - Courageous Women

Ainsley’s teacher tweeted a picture of the class which quickly went viral to a chorus of ‘I love this so much!’. Said Ainsley’s Dad, “She wanted to wear the hotdog costume because she doesn’t care what people think.”

Ainsley embodied the courage so many of us wish we had every day to step outside the mould: in a world of princesses, she dared to be a hot dog. <3

– – –

Three very different situations, three uniquely courageous acts that filled hearts everywhere with all of the feels and helped moved womankind a teeny bit further along. As a woman – even on the other side of the world! – the actions of these three women/girls/princesses has left me feeling a little more brave and optimistic than I did at the start of the week.

And that’s a damn good week.

 

Did these moments impact you this week? Has there been another great moment for womankind lately that has made you cheer? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below! 

One dress, two ways: what I bought in March

April 3 2016

It’s all about wearability when it comes to March’s spoils – and finally a little restraint to set the shopping budget back on track a bit! Just one purchase for the month, but boy it’s a goodie!

Recapping the Budget Happenings

Those following along this little experiment know that in order to curb a tendency for overindulgence on the shopping front, I have committed to a budget of $500 per month for the year. Any left over gets rolled over to the next month’s kitty, and any overspend gets subtracted! February was full of fabulous new season navy (which has gone into high rotation, so super happy with the purchases!), but it stretched the budget more than hoped leaving me with $203.22 to spend in March!

What I bought: March

I knew exactly what I wanted to buy with this month’s budget!

1. Sacha Drake black reverse wrap dress (full skirt), $249

Sacha Drake Reverse Wrap Dress full skirt

What I bought in MarcH: Sacha Drake Reverse Wrap Dress (full skirt), $249

 

I have long been a fan of Sacha’s designs, in particular her focus on designing to fit and flatter a variety of shapes and sizes. I heard Sacha speak at an event last year and was so taken with her sense of humour, success and genuine desire to help women to look and feel their best.

The style of Sacha’s I’d been coveting is the wrap dress. However! The standard wrap dress is a little too straight for my curvy lower half. But alas, Sacha thought of all shapes and has again released the reverse wrap dress in a full skirt that is a little more forgiving below the waist. I nabbed it, it’s mine, hurrah!

Sacha Drake reverse wrap dress full skirt v neck

Super psyched to make this wrap dress mine! Just the right amount of cleavage and snug in all the right places! 

 

And I love it. It is extremely comfortable, easy to wear, adjustable, stretchy, machine washable and no iron!! As if that wasn’t enough, it’s also reversible, giving you two fabulous looks for the price of one. The skirt hits right on the knees for super flatter, the three-quarter sleeves are just right and the v-neck is flattering for us larger chested ladies without falling so low that it needs a cami underneath. It is the perfect desk-to-dinner dress, I can already see it being a fail-safe option for a whole raft of different occasions!

Sacha Drake reverse wrap dress full skirt - sublime finds

What I bought in March… in reverse! Spinning the dress around for the boat-neck look. #love

Of course the dress would look fabulous with a pair of pumps (statement pumps I think!) – I’ve been out and about in it with flats as well, which worked perfectly well for running about in the day. For night I’d dress it up with a big earring (with the v-neck) or a statement necklace (if wearing it in reverse with the boat neck). I’m not the only dame loving this dress this month, had a major jinx moment with another Sacha-lover at work when we rocked up in the same frock and I also spotted Sonia Styling sporting this style in her LBD post!

You can nab this dress in Sacha’s boutiques, online at Sacha Drake or Birdsnest.

The Result

Highly satisfied and with excellent restraint, I started with $203.22 for the month, spent $249 which was $45.78 over (the revised) budget for March. This means I’ve got $454.22 to spend in April… birthday month!

Sacha Drake reverse wrap dress full skirt spin

Squeee! Full skirt = joyous spinning! Total Sublime Find!

Over to you Sublime Seekers – what did you buy this month? Do you love a good wrap dress? Have you got any all-occasion-fail-safe outfits? Love to hear your thoughts in the comments below! 

Recommendations from a feminist Easter

March 28 2016

What could be more indulgent than succumbing to a weekend of chocolate eggs? Well, for me, having enough space to devote several uninterrupted hours to catch up on reading, watching and listening to a variety of exceptional women during some well-overdue alone time.

My work and passion intersect at women and equality and as a result there’s constantly a back log of things taking my interest I wish I had consumed. Now I’ve spent a couple of days screaming through the back catalogue, I thought I’d share some thoughts and takeaways with you – definitely some sublime finds in here.

Chat 10 Looks 3 podcast by Leigh Sales and Annabel Crabb

chat10looks3

Best podcast going: Chat 10 Looks 3

I’m putting it out there early – I have become wholly obsessed with Annabel Crabb and Leigh Sales (as will shortly become obvious from my list). As you’re likely aware, both are primarily political journalists for the ABC as well as authors, podcasters, mums and off-air pals. After meeting when Crabb joined the ABC, they hit it off and long story short started a podcast together nearly a year and a half ago to give them the opportunity to chat about all the things they enjoy that their day jobs don’t enable them to talk about; books, tv, movies, articles and cooking. (One carefully following along may note this is what I too am doing with this post…).

Of the podcast I can say this: nothing as ever made me want to be something other than myself as much as these two. They are so widely read it is a treat to hear their views on what stands out to them. Their unassuming witty banter and inability to not laugh at themselves (plus the futile attempts of Leigh’s husband Phil to get them to market the podcast properly) keeps you coming back for more. What is most remarkable to me is that both women are so extraordinarily accomplished in their fields yet if you didn’t know their day jobs, you’d easily be forgiven for thinking they were any two ladies (with exceptional vocabulary) who love to read, chat, take jabs at each other and laugh it off. I’m still working through the back catalogue – well worth a listen.

Download the Chat 10 Looks 3 podcast here.

The Wife Drought by Annabel Crabb

I’d started reading The Wife Drought before listening the podcast and am glad to have finished the book with Annabel’s voice in my head. In her book, Crabb examines the role of ‘wives’ (used as a gender neutral term to describe the home-keeping support people to busy professionals) in enabling career progress and success.

Annabel_Crabb_The Wife Drought

Essential Reading: Annabel Crabb: The Wife Drought

Citing a good deal of history and data the book unveils the research behind what we know to be true; on average, working men enjoy a great deal more support on the domestic front than working women. Crabb proposes and I wholeheartedly agree: until we see work inside the home shared equally, we’ll struggle to achieve equality in the workplace. A must-read.

Buy The Wife Drought for kindle here or in print here.

Also delightful – Leigh Sales interviewing Crabb about the book here!

Anne Summers interviews Annabel Crabb

Anne Summers’ conversation series brings exceptional guests to the stage in Sydney for a live interview style discussion that’s impossible to turn off. Anne’s interview with Annabel is the third of five I’ve watched from last year (Elizabeth Broderick and David Morrison the others). Anne gave us the opportunity to hear about the woman that is Annabel Crabb, a relatively untold story when we’re so often on the receiving end of Crabb’s journalism. From politics to parenthood, career, cooking and everything in between (including Annabel having baited Summers into producing a pudding to enjoy when it came to questions from the audience) this interview – like all those by Anne Summers – was a delight.

Full interview here:

Canberra Al Desko

While I was aware Annabel hosted the show Kitchen Cabinet (in which she visits politicians houses and they cook for her while being interviewed in a less-formal setting) I did not realise ’til watching the interview that she has a new show Canberra Al Desko – 6 minute bites formed on the basis that most people, politicians included, eat lunch at their desks. She visits politician’s chambers and they make food for her and they have a chat. Episode 2 with James McGrath filmed a couple of days after Turnbull took the leadership is unmissable.

Canberra Al Desko on iView here.

When I Get a Minute

Following the success of the Chat 10 Looks 3 podcast, ABC iView has/is producing a series of 8 x 15 minute segments with Crabb and Sales in which they chat on-the-go about what they’re reading and watching.

When I Get A Minute

Lols ahoy: Annabel Crabb and Leigh Sales on When I Get A Minute

All the appeal – and ribbing – of the podcast with extra production value (can’t decide if that’s good or bad yet) and the loveliness of seeing Crabb and Sales chitter chat out and about in Sydney.

When I Get a Minute available on iView here.

Leigh Sales on Mamamia’s No Filter podcast

Not wanting to favour only the curly-haired half of the Chat 10 Looks 3 pair, I downloaded Mamamia’s No Filter podcast hosted by Mia Freedman with Leigh Sales. An amazing insight into the life of a prime-time TV host and parent on work, politics, birth, family and where to next. Honest and down-to-earth, well worth 45 minutes.

Download the No Filter podcast with Leigh Sales here – it’s no 9.

Anika Wells’ opinion piece in the Sydney Morning Herald

Deep in the midst of my Crabbsession (Crabb-obsession, do you see what I’m trying to do there?) my very dear, very talented friend Anika wrote an opinion piece for the Sydney Morning Herald – published smack bang next to Crabb’s column this weekend!

Anika Wells Annabel Crabb

Wells and Crabb intersect in the SMH opinion pages

Earlier this month, Anika in her role at Maurice Blackburn Lawyers partnered up with The Parenthood to do a ReachTEL survey of more than 1,000 working mums to examine the impact of our national employment laws on the rights of people with caring responsibilities. The results suggest there is much work to be done and Anika in her piece outlines why this is a critical election issue.

You should absolutely read it here.

Anne Summers on how to boost GDP by 13%

Anika isn’t the only one spying the lady-shaped hole in the government’s focus – in a piece very much in the same vein, Anne Summers talks about the untapped resource to boost our economy that exists in Australia’s females.

Another worthy read here.

Q&A from 7 March: our Minister for Women isn’t a feminist #facepalm

One thing I’d mentally bookmarked to return to was the Q&A from International Women’s Day eve on the 7th of this month. Typically the Q&A close to International Women’s Day focuses on matters of lady-relevance and in this one Michaelia Cash, our Minister for Women, declines AGAIN to call herself a feminist. It’d been bugging me the last few weeks and I wanted to watch it before commenting further.

Sadie Sue and Feminism

Sadie Sue aptly sums up my feelings about Our Minister for Women refusing to call herself a feminist. (Also – could this be the worst picture I’ve ever put on the blog?! Washing in the background and finger over the lens? Good lord.)

Michaelia won’t deny she’s a feminist, in fact fellow panelist Mia Freedman rightly identifies ‘if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, then usually it’s a duck’ and Cash doesn’t disagree – but continues to claim she doesn’t label herself and therefore won’t call herself a feminist. (One tweet displayed onscreen suggests she has previously labelled herself a Catholic, so there goes that theory.)

The thing that irritates me the MOST about this is that I think Michaelia is a feminist as Mia suggests. I also think there’s some hack hidden in the shadows telling her than being feminist doesn’t poll well for women and it’d be a mistake to call herself one – another teeny tiny way we suggest that being for or in support of women is a mistake. That is what irks me.

Julie Bishop also won’t self-identify as a feminist. Turnbull however, has been calling himself a feminist since 1988. Even Alan bloody Jones called himself a feminist. Lets stop hating on the term, people.

Watch the episode here.

Jane Caro’s article: can Justin Trudeau call himself a feminist?

On the same topic as politicians calling – or not calling – themselves feminists, equality champion and Prime Minister of Canada Justin Trudeau sprung back into headlines again recently for saying “I am going to keep saying loud and clear that I am a feminist until it is met with a shrug.” #swoon

Jane Caro explores the opinions of some that a man cannot, in fact, be a feminist – only a woman can. An interesting think piece (that *spoiler alert* ultimately ends with Caro concluding men can and must be feminists, I wholeheartedly agree).

Read it here.

Roxane Gay’s TED Talk: Confessions of a Bad Feminist

I’ve been plugging away at Roxane Gay’s book ‘Bad Feminist’ for a little while now (I have started and not-yet-finished an appalling number of books lately, I get so excited about reading the next thing that I just start) but found her TED talk of the same name this weekend.

Skip the book and watch the talk. 12 minutes well spent here:

Kel Campbell’s blog: Sexism is Hard to Explain

Huffington Post reposted a blog written by Kel Campbell on Medium in which Campbell attempts to explain the very delicate intricacies of sexism. What was more interesting than her article was the fairly excessively hostile comments she received from men and women alike telling her how to feel. This one resonated with me and reminded me of a time early in uni when I said at the dinner table that the excessive chivalry of a fellow student had been making me a bit uncomfortable. My wonderful Dad told me to listen to my gut and take myself out of the situation if it made me uncomfortable. Another relative tore strips off me, suggesting I didn’t know how to take a compliment which saw me leave the table in tears.

I note the author has now removed the article from Medium. An interesting look at what happens when women say that something men regularly do makes them uncomfortable.

Still available on Huffington Post here.

Jimmy Bartel’s interview with the Herald Sun

This weekend, the Herald Sun published a deeply personal interview with AFL star Jimmy Bartel on his childhood experience with domestic violence. Bartel has vowed not to shave or cut his hair this AFL season to raise awareness around domestic and family violence stating, ‘If I  can get kids asking their father why I have a big dirty beard and long ratty hair, I will be achieving something.’

Jimmy Bartel

Jimmy Bartel opens up about his experience with domestic and family violence. Picture: Jason Edwards – source

Not a piece of journalism you come across often, the interview is long but provides a spine-tingling view into childhood with family violence.

Read it here.

He Named Me Malala

He Named Me Malala

A beautiful film for young and old alike: He Named Me Malala

In an attempt to finish on an inspiring note – the last piece I’ll mention from my feminist Easter roundup is the documentary He Named Me Malala. I’ve had this on my iTunes wishlist for ages, and loved it every bit as much as I thought. Shining a light on the story of Malala Yousafzai, our youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate, it will make you laugh out loud AND cry for how exceptionally remarkable this now-18-year-old is.

Rent or buy on iTunes here.

 

Any other Crabb and Sales fans out there? Have you read/watched/listened to anything I listed above? What did you indulge in over Easter? Love to chit chat with you below in the comments!