Here’s When You Can Get ‘Star Wars Rise of the Skywalker’ Tickets

For Star Wars fans across the globe, there’s officially a date when you can get your Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker tickets. On Monday, Oct. 21, tickets will go on sale during the halftime of ESPN’s Monday Night Football game, which begins at 8:15 p.m. EST, according to Deadline. On Twitter, Disney confirmed the final trailer for Episode IX will premiere during the game on Monday, as well.

Fans of the franchise may want to put the date on their calendar, as in the past, Star Wars ticket sales have set records. In 2015, Star Wars: Force Awakens advance ticket sales caused vendor websites to crash, as per Deadline. More recently, Avengers: Endgame caused a similar crash, grossing an estimated $120 million in pre-sale tickets before the movie hit the screen. While Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker might not outsell the last installment of Avengers, the movie will almost certainly be among Fandango’s top openings, which include 2017’s Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Star Wars: Rogue One, as per Deadline.

The new Star Wars film will be the final installment in the nine-part Skywalker epic which began in 1977 with George Lucas’ film Star Wars: A New Hope. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premieres on Dec. 20, as per Collider.

Disney kept details of the film out of the spotlight, and unlike other major theatrical releases, chose to debut the full-trailer a couple of months before the premiere date, likely to protect plot details. An image of Rey premiered at the D23 Expo, and it featured her wearing a hood and holding a red lightsaber. The "dark Rey" image sparked many theories about the character’s arc in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker. Fans have eagerly awaited more details, and the hype around the trailer premiere could boost early ticket sales for the film.

Many of the actors who appeared in Star Wars: The Last Jedi and Star Wars: Rogue One will return for the final installment, including the late Carrie Fisher, who producer’s included via formerly unseen footage from The Force Awakens, according to Entertainment Weekly. The movie will also mark the return of Billy Dee Williams as Lando Calrissian, who hasn’t appeared in a franchise film since 1983’s Return of the Jedi. Among the all-star cast will also be Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Domhnall Gleeson, Richard E. Grant, Lupita Nyong’o, Keri Russell, and Kelly Marie Tran, as per Deadline.

In October, director J.J. Abrams, who co-wrote the film with Chris Terrio, discussed how terrifying it was to write the Star Wars series’ ending, as per Entertainment Weekly. He said: “This is about bringing this thing to a close in a way that is emotional and meaningful and also satisfying in terms of actually answering as many questions as possible."

Abrams went on to note that creating a story which fit in with the rest of the films was a priority. He said, "So if years from now, someone’s watching these movies, all nine of them, they’re watching a story that is as cohesive as possible." Further details about the movie aren’t likely to come out ahead of the release, so for anyone hoping to be among the first viewers, setting a calendar reminder for Monday night is essential.

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UK spy chiefs are searching for dyslexic codecrackers to work at GCHQ base

Spy chiefs want to hire dyslexics to work as analysts at its GCHQ listening base.

They say dyslexics, who can have problems reading and writing but are often very bright, boast skills to “simplify complicated processes” and are good team-players.

GCHQ bosses have also tried to attract middle-aged women by advertising on Mumsnet and used hidden graffiti to impress youngsters interested in a spying career.

GCHQ director Jeremy Fleming said dyslexics were an important part of the “mix of minds” at the secretive base in Cheltenham, Glos.

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Urgent appeal to find boy, 8, missing with teen girl after trip to the library

A desperate appeal has been launched to find an eight-year-old boy who is missing with a teenage girl.

Gibreel Njie, eight, was last seen at Barking Library in London at about 4pm on Saturday.

He was seen by a relative with a girl believed to be Kadiaa Malone, 13, police say.

The pair are friends who live near to each other.

Police have issued an appeal for help in finding the two children and are urging anyone with information to get in touch.

A statement from the Metropolitan Police says: "Police are appealing for assistance in tracing two children who are missing.

"Gibreel Njie, 8, and Kadiaa Malone, 13, are friends who live near to each other in the Barking area.

"Gibreel was last seen at Barking Library at around 1600hrs on Saturday, 19 October.

"He had gone to the library alone, where he was seen by a relative with a girl believed to be Kadiaa.

"While Kadiaa has been reported missing previously, this is the first time that Gibreel has been reported missing."

Anyone who may have seen either of the children should call police on 101 quoting CAD 337/oct20

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Jennifer Garner Shared a Video of Her Mammogram Appointment for Breast Cancer Awareness

Jennifer Garner is reminding her followers that October is about more than just Halloween fun — it’s also Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

The actress, 47, gave followers a peek of her annual mammogram appointment in a video shared to her social channels, hoping to encourage others to schedule their own checkups.

“Happy October! It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and it’s time for a mammogram,” Garner says in her video. She keeps things lighthearted throughout the procedure, doodling on anatomical diagrams and making silly faces. While waiting for her results, the star plays with her feet and blows up a latex glove like a balloon.

Finally her doctor comes in and says, “Okay, your mammogram looks perfect,” and they both give a thumbs-up to the camera.

She ends her doctor’s visit with a victory dance while quietly chanting, “Done! Done! Done!”

Alongside the video, Garner wrote a message of support to women currently battling breast cancer and encouraging others to get checked for early detection.

“Every October I have a standing date . For a mammogram . For me, having the appointment on the books makes it routine, like the dentist,” she wrote. “I know it’s scary, sisters, but just do it—the next best thing to an all clear is early detection. To everyone in the thick of the battle—respect and love and strength to you. ”

According to the National Cancer Institute, early detection of breast cancer through mammograms allows patients to get a head start on treatment, and can decrease the likelihood of it spreading.

Health officials also advise “breast self-awareness,” which means becoming familiar with how your breasts normally look and feel so you will be more likely to recognize anything out of the ordinary when doing a breast self-examination.

“For any individual, it could be what makes the difference between less aggressive treatment and potentially longer survivorship,” Marisa Weiss, MD, Director of Breast Health Outreach at Lankenau Medical Center in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania, and Chief Medical Officer of, told Health last year.

This article originally appeared on People. For more stories like this, visit

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Tesco is doing 10p a litre off fuel this week

TESCO shoppers can get 10p a litre off fuel this week – but they must spend at least £60 first.

Customers can earn the vouchers when they spend online and in stores until Sunday October 27.

You'll need to spend at least £60 in one go in order to qualify for the money-off when you fill up.

If you qualify, you will automatically be given a voucher at the checkout – or one to print off if you're shopping online – which you will need to show the cashier when you pay at the pump.

The retailer has over 600 filling stations across the UK, which can be located using its store finder.

You can find Tesco's full terms and conditions on its website.

Ways to cut down on your fuel costs

HERE are some tips on how you can slash the cost of fuel

  1. Make your car more fuel-efficient. You can do this by keeping your tyres inflated, taking the roof rack off, emptying your car of clutter and turning off your air con when driving at lower speeds.
  2. Find the cheapest fuel prices. and allows you to search prices of UK petrol stations. All you need to do is enter in your postcode and tell it how far you want to travel (up to 20 miles).
  3. Drive more efficiently. Some ways to do this, include:
  • Accelerate gradually without over-revving
  • Always drive on the highest possible gear
  • If you can, allow your car to slow down naturally as your brake is a money burner
  • Re-starting your car is expensive, if you can keep moving


Bear in mind that the deal is only worth it if you were already planning on spending £60 at the supermarket, as it might not be the best offer in your area.

You can compare pump prices at fuel stations near to you for free via or

The supermarket ran the same deal this summer, saving drivers cash in a bid to combat the steepest petrol prices seen in years.

Earlier this week, Tesco joined the fuel price war by dropping pump prices by up to 3p per litre, a day after Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons also cut prices.

It came days before the start of the October half term, when many families will be filling up their cars for day trips and mini breaks.

Average UK unleaded pump prices have barely budged from where they were a month ago, according to the AA, down just 0.19p from 127.77p a litre in mid September to 127.58p in mid October.

Diesel averages, meanwhile, are 0.29p a litre dearer, up from 131.26p a litre a month ago to 131.55p now.

Supermarkets and petrol stations have recently been accused of "charging 4p per litre more than they should be", according to the RAC.

Earlier this year, it was also revealed that diesel drivers were paying more for fuel than they should to subsidise the cost of petrol.

Here's how you can cut your fuel costs as supermarkets and petrol stations nationwide increase their prices.

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Amazon Shoppers Say This Boho Striped Cardigan Is a 'Must-Have'

Our list of favorite fall activities is lengthy — apple picking is somewhere near the top, but so is simply curling up in a cozy sweater with a good book. When the temperatures start to drop, we can’t wait to relax in our favorite fuzzy cardigans and knit pullovers. But if we’re being honest, does anyone have just one favorite sweater? We have multiple go-tos in our closets, and are always expanding our collections.

If you’re looking to find a new sweater to add to your wardrobe, we’ve found just the right one. The best part about it is that it’s super affordable, so you can buy one (or more) without breaking the bank!

See it: Get the Yacooh Womens Boho Open Front Sweater with prices starting at just $18, available on Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, October 19, 2019, but are subject to change.

This longline open front striped cardigan from Yacooh was made for the autumn season. It’s the perfect casual sweater to throw on when it’s a bit chilly out or to layer underneath a warmer jacket when it’s colder. It’s also great for lounging around the house, which is an activity we partake in extensively during the fall and winter. You can pick one up from Amazon for as low as $18, which is a major bargain!

There’s a ton of variety when it comes to this sweater in terms of color, cut and fabric texture. Your first option is to go for a chunkier knit that’s the thickest and the warmest of the three different styles. It comes in a series of trendy, neutral stripes that have a color-blocked feel to them. This is perfect for those living in a particularly chilly climate who may need some extra heat!

See it: Get the Yacooh Womens Boho Open Front Sweater with prices starting at just $18, available on Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, October 19, 2019, but are subject to change.

The second option may have the same color-blocked vibe, but it’s made of a thinner knit fabric and it’s cut longer as well. The third option is made from the same fabric and is cut in the same silhouette, but the stripes are even thinner and two-toned. It will probably be favored by someone with a more preppy aesthetic, but don’t stress if that’s not you! Whichever option you choose, this casual sweater is sure to complement many different outfits with ease.

Amazon reviewers say that this Yacooh sweater is a “must-have cardigan” and that it “matches everyone’s wardrobe.” With 21 different color and fabric options, it would be hard for someone not to find at least one of these cardigans that they love! They say that it’s “so soft and comfortable” and that the colors are “perfect!” Some shoppers have even bought this cardigan in multiple colors, and we can see why. With this amazing price point, buying more than one seems like a winning idea — and one step closer to a warmer winter!

See it: Get the Yacooh Womens Boho Open Front Sweater with prices starting at just $18, available on Amazon! Please note, prices are accurate at the date of publication, October 19, 2019, but are subject to change.

Not the style you’re shopping for? Check out more pieces from Yacooh and all of the women’s clothing available on Amazon here!

Check out more of our picks and deals here!

This post is brought to you by Us Weekly’s Shop With Us team. The Shop With Us team aims to highlight products and services our readers might find interesting and useful. Product and service selection, however, is in no way intended to constitute an endorsement by either Us Weekly or of any celebrity mentioned in the post.

The Shop With Us team may receive products free of charge from manufacturers to test. In addition, Us Weekly receives compensation from the manufacturer of the products we write about when you click on a link and then purchase the product featured in an article. This does not drive our decision as to whether or not a product or service is featured or recommended. Shop With Us operates independently from advertising sales team. We welcome your feedback at [email protected] Happy shopping!

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Couple spend their £7,000 wedding fund to save their poorly dog

A couple have spent their £7,000 wedding fund on treatment to help save their poorly dog .

Maria Grace and her partner Gareth saved for more than one year but Shih Tzu Bella's health declined recently.

She is is riddled with arthritis and completely lame on her right side, reports Bristol Live .

After vets said the only options were to put the dog down or pay £8,000 for surgery, the couple decided to spend their wedding savings on the pet.

"So many people have said, ‘Oh my God, I can’t believe you’re spending that much money on a dog,'" Maria, 39, said.

"We saved about £7,000 towards it, so we were doing quite well with the savings, but that’s now been spent on Bella.

“It sounds silly to some people but Bella and her brother Len are part of our family. When I couldn’t have any more children after my daughter Charlotte, they kind of became my babies.”

Gareth and Maria, who is a teacher from Pontypridd, south Wales, have now paid £13,000 in vet fees to fight health issues which have plagued eight-year-old Bella.

Now the family admit they are under “massive strain” financially.

Maria is unable to work while she recovers from a complete hysterectomy after years of suffering from tumours and endometriosis.

They've now created a Gofundme page  in a bid to raise the £8,000 required for the dog's treatment.

Maria, who is a mum, continued: “If there’s a chance here with this specialist surgery, I want to give it one last shot.

“If Bella can spend her remaining years being able to actually run and play on this planet, then I want that so much for her.

“She’s a really affectionate dog, with a lovely temperament. She loves life."

The Shih Tzu was born with weakness in her hind legs. She and Len were taken in by Maria’s family shortly after their births.

Maria continued: “The family we took her from said she was just going to be used as a breeding dog.

“They warned us she wasn’t well, but we felt sorry for her. Charlotte, who’s now 18, was born with weakness in her left side too.

“She immediately picked Bella and said, ‘Can we have her because she has a bad leg like me?’ We couldn’t just leave her there.”

Would you spend your wedding fund to save your pet?


Over the following years, Bella suffered through a series of leg breaks, torn cruciate ligaments and muscle pain.

“Despite this, she is such a happy, loving, gentle girl,” Maria said. “She’s always smiling with her little crooked teeth.

“In July this year, Bella ruptured her left cruciate ligament and injured her left kneecap in the process.

“She has had three surgeries since 2017, so we were really worried that another one would be too much for her, but we booked her in, hoping it would be the last time she would need it done.”

Two days before Bella’s surgery date in July, she jumped off the sofa and completely ruptured her right cruciate ligament, as well as badly injuring her right kneecap.

“When her right leg went, it was such a blow,” Maria said.

“She was crying and couldn’t put any weight on it. It was horrible to see her in pain.”

Bella was taken in for emergency surgery on her right leg, but her tissue is not knitting together as vets hoped it would.

The dog is lame on her right side, unable to even toe-tap on the floor, while her left side is deteriorating.

Maria said: “At this point the vet said we had tried everything so it wouldn’t be the incorrect decision to let her go to sleep.”

Langford Small Animal Hospital in North Somerset proposed the last resort of an £8,000 surgery, which would see Bella given new metal knees by one of the top specialists in the country.

“As I cried to the vet, I went over and over it all, and as much as I hate the idea of my little girl going under anaesthetic again, and having major surgery again, I just can’t bring myself to say yes to having her put down,” Maria said.

The family’s vet said the operation would have a 95 per cent chance of being a permanent fix.

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Study: Chocolate chip cookies are 'like cocaine'

What’s the next best food item to invest in? CAVU Ventures answers

CAVU Venture Partners co-founders and managing partners Rohan Oza and Brett Thomas discuss how their company finds winners in the market.

Chocolate chip cookies apparently are as addictive as drugs. No wonder they remain the top choice in what is a crowded cookie market.

Continue Reading Below

The only thing faster than the expanding market for cookies is the expanding waistline of consumers. A recent study from the University of Bordeaux “has revealed that sugar and sweet reward can not only substitute to addictive drugs, like cocaine, but can even be more rewarding and attractive. At the neurobiological level, the neural substrates of sugar and sweet reward appear to be more robust than those of cocaine.”

Forget “Breaking Bad,” the AMC series about a high school chemistry teacher-turned drug maker. Simply break open a bag of Chips Ahoy! to get your fix.

A regular chocolate chip cookie, with 2.5 grams of sugar, the report says, “induces some of the same responses as cocaine.” Factor that in with the presence of  chocolate, which “contains small amounts of a compound that trigger the same part of your brain as the addictive ingredient marijuana” and it makes for quite the heady blend.


There are a lot of chocolate chip cookie addicts walking around. The chocolate chip cookie is America’s favorite according to nearly every poll. It accounts for a quarter of all cookie sales globally.


And those intrinsic qualities of cookies, especially the addictive ones, make it a staple in what is expected to be a $38 billion global cookie industry by 2022.

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Score up to 90% off on these 15 items you never knew you needed

The worldwide web is home to practically any kind of product you can imagine. That includes everything from practical, everyday items to totally pointless junk (sorry). That means you need to be extra careful when you shop online.

Don’t worry; we’re here to help. We’ve scoured the internet for some of the best deals we could find on tech, home, personal care, and other gadgets that might usually go unnoticed. No sweat off your back.

No, they’re not cheap gimmicks or scams – although, some products do seem too wacky to actually work. These products are actually useful and will enhance your daily life. Plus, the prices are way too good to pass up. So, go ahead, treat yourself.

For your scary movie marathons: VIZIO SmartCast™ E-series 60″ Ultra HD Home Theater Display™

Halloween is nearly here, which means there’s no better time to queue up the scary movie marathon. In order to make the most of your binge, you may want to upgrade your setup. This stunning 60-inch Ultra HD Theater Display from VIZIO will make you feel like you’re in a full-screen theater with its HDR10 content support, 4K Ultra HD resolution, and superior picture performance of full array XLED backlighting. Plus, it has Chromecast built-in, so you can stream your favorite flicks easier than ever.

Originally retailing for $749.99, you can pick up a VIZIO SmartCast E-Series Home Theater Display for $599.99 right now.

For sporadic jam sessions: xFyro ORION Wireless Waterproof Speaker

Sometimes you just need to put all your worries aside and have a random karaoke session by yourself in the shower, in the pool, at the park, or literally anywhere else. The ORION Wireless Waterproof Speaker lets you do just that. With an IP67 rating and the ability to float, this portable, waterproof Bluetooth speaker pumps out crystal clear music wherever your day may take you.

Usually $50, you can pick up the xFyro ORION Speaker for $34.99 for a limited time.

For an age-defying skincare routine: Infini Sonic Therapy Neck Device

No matter how young your face looks, your neck can be a dead giveaway for how old you are. But don’t worry, you can change that with vibration technology using the Infini Sonic Therapy Neck Device. Add this handheld gadget to your skincare routine to help relax your neckline muscles and firm the skin through blood circulation. It claims to eliminate toxins while reducing signs of aging and giving you tighter, firmer skin. Oh, and you can also use it on your shoulders when you need some relief.

While normally priced at $600, for a limited time you can grab the device for just $58.99.

For efficient charging at home: Rabbit Charger DUO with Micro-USB, USB-C & MFi Lightning Charging Tips

This charging system will revolutionize the way you juice up your devices. It secures to any standard duplex outlet and integrates a retractable charging cable into your walls, with swappable charging tips for multiple devices. All you have to do is unscrew your old outlet cover, plug in the Rabbit, and screw it in place for your outlet to feature a Y-shaped charging hub on top with two charging tips. Oh, and since the cable itself is retractable, you won’t have any messy cords hanging from your walls.

The Rabbit Charger DUO comes with micro-USB, USB-C, and MFi Lightning charging tips and is on sale now for $49.95 – reduced from $59.90.

For constantly stressed out commuters: Spinning Car Aromatherapy Diffuser

Perfect for commuters, frequent travelers, or anyone who sits in traffic, this Spinning Car Aromatherapy Diffuser transforms your car from a rage-inducing prison to a miniature sanctuary. With five included scents – lemon, lavender, ocean, osmanthus, and cologne – you can adjust the fragrance concentration to suit your personal preference or your mood at the moment. Plus, it features an optical illusion ring design that’ll help you meditate when slow drivers steal your sunshine.

Snag it on sale for just $12.99 — that’s 18% off the MSRP.

For the Marvel mega-fan: Mark IV Iron Man Helmet Hand-Signed by Jon. Favreau, Mickey Rourke & Robert Downey, Jr.

Whether you’re obsessed with Iron Man or you’re looking for a gift for your Marvel-obsessed friend, this signed Iron Man Mark IV helmet is the perfect way to pay homage to one of the most iconic Marvel superheroes of all time. It’s a life-sized, gallery-displayed, hand-signed replica signed by Iron Man himself (Robert Downey, Jr.), plus Mickey Rourke and director Jon Favreau. Its authenticity is verified and certified genuine by PSA/DNA Authentication Services.

Worth $2,399.99, you can slash 41% off and get it today for $1,399.99.

For preventing clogs and plumbing issues: TubShroom®, SinkShroom® Strainers & StopShroom® Plug Bundle

TubShroom and SinkShroom were designed to catch any stray hairs or debris that attempt to make their way down your pipes. TubShroom fits snug inside your shower drain, effortlessly keeping things running, while the SinkShroom and Kitchen SinkShroom pop out of the drain allowing water to flow freely while collecting debris. This bundle also includes StopShroom which plugs up the drain when you want to fill the sink.

This bundle usually costs $49.99, but you can get it on sale for just $31.99.

For improving late-night lavatory experiences: Original IllumiBowl Toilet Night Light

This late-night toilet trip game-changer snaps onto the rim of your porcelain throne and automatically lights up when someone walks into the bathroom, thanks to a motion-activated sensor. In other words, accidents in the dark will be a thing of the past. Choose from eight color possibilities and patterned illuminations, or set it to a color-rotate mode for a real show. Either way, you definitely won’t regret this purchase.

The Original IllumiBowl Toilet Night Light is usually $15, but you can get it for $10.99 now.

For relieving sore muscles at home: TimTam All-New PowerMassager™

The TimTam All-New PowerMassager packs incredible power in a handheld package. It uses 2,500 strokes per minute and a one-touch trigger start to break down knots, increase blood flow, and release stored lactic acid in minutes. If you’re a hardcore athlete, regular gym-goer, or tend to pull muscles just rolling out of bed in the morning, this lightweight, cord-free massager will become your best bud. You can even tackle sore muscles on the go.

Usually retailing for $249, the TimTam PowerMassager is just $199 right now.

For those who need some sleep assistance: Manta Sleep Mask v2 & Blackout Stickers

The Manta Sleep Mask v2 is like having blackout curtains everywhere you go. Whether you’re a back, side, or belly sleeper, just slip it on and block out intrusive light with ease. It’s made with memory foam eyecups and contours to your eyes without any added pressure, making it easier to achieve REM sleep. You’ll also get a set of blackout stickers, just to add to the darkness. Just peel them off and stick them to any distracting lights emanating from your electronics.

Normally $39.98, you can get them today for only $29.99 — a savings of 24%.

For germaphobes everywhere: Mizu Smart Bath Towel

You’ll never have to worry about dirty, musty, or smelly towels again with the Mizu Smart Bath Towel, otherwise known as the world’s best bacteria-fighting towel. It claims to be the only self-cleaning and contaminant-detecting towel on the market, with natural-cleaning silver fibers that warn you about bacteria build-up by changing color. It’s woven luxurious, quick-dry cotton material naturally inhibits up to 99% of bacterial growth before it even starts and it also absorbs and dries five times faster than your average towel.

You can get the Mizu Smart Bath Towel for $43, reduced from 57%, and kick bacteria to the curb.

For a family movie night: Big Blanket™

You can now buy a blanket that’s big enough for the entire family. Appropriately named the Big Blanket, this cozy blessing is ten by ten feet, which is more than four times the size of an average throw blanket. Made from ultra-premium stretchy material, the Big Blanket is super soft and helps regulate body temperatures, meaning movie nights will be more comfortable than ever before. For everyone.

Pick up the Big Blanket for $129 – reduced 74% from the original cost of $500.

For some self-care for your skin: The Orijin Sponge

On a mission to promote self-care and wellness, the Orijin Sponge – a 100% natural and biodegradable sponge – was created. It’s made from Japanese Konjac Plant Root and infused with anti-microbial bamboo charcoal to deliver some TLC to your skin as you shower. It’s naturally alkaline and its fibers absorb debris and impurities without letting bacteria grow. Think of it as the modern-day replacement for the bacteria-filled loofah.

This sponge usually retails for $20, but you can slash a few bucks off and get it for $17.

For a smarter living space: iHaper B2 E26 Smart LED Light Bulb

Lighting is everything when it comes to your living space and these Haper Smart LED Light Bulbs give you the flexibility to change it whenever you want. Designed to work with Apple HomeKit, the bulbs can be directly controlled via Home App, Siri, Alexa, and Google Assistant. You can use the app or voice commands to easily dim or brighten the light to your desired level and change the aesthetic of your space. Plus, you never have to worry about forgetting to turn the lights off, as you can set schedules or control them remotely.

Normally $19.97, you can get one on sale for $15.97 — a savings of 20%.

For those who need a little magic in their lives: NEBULA Levitating Bluetooth Speaker

There are regular Bluetooth speakers and then there’s the NEBULA Levitating Bluetooth Speaker. As the name implies, this speaker delivers sound with a glowing LED light around a floating orb. It rotates 360 degrees to provide HD surround sound loud enough to fill a room and can be used to make and receive phone calls in futuristic style. You can even mute it and use it as a magical nightlight. Whatever floats your orb.

Usually $299.99, you can grab this little piece of magic on sale for $139.99.

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An out-of-hours email ban causing stress proves we need to rethink work culture

About to do some work you didn’t manage to finish on Friday?

Or are you reading through a grumpy email from your boss and already mentally drafting your immediate, apologetic response?

Stop. Please, stop. We simply can’t keep going on like this. Working into our weekends and being on constant alert, escaping the office physically but never, ever mentally (not entirely), not even when we vow to do a digital detox. We can feel ourselves worrying about what horrors lurk inside our inbox.

This week a study declared that while a ban on out-of-office emails could help some people to step away from work and feel a bit calmer, for others it could prevent them from getting all their work done, causing stress.

Dr Emma Russell, of the University of Sussex Business School, said ‘[Blanket bans] would be unlikely to be welcomed by employees who prioritise work performance goals and who would prefer to attend to work outside of hours if it helps them get their tasks completed.’

Cue a load of managers thinking: ‘ah, yes, it’s okay to send emails out of work-time and expect a response, because doing a blanket ban could make people worry!’

This is, quite frankly, insane.

If someone is unable to get the work done during their office hours, the solution is not to welcome working all weekend or encourage them to be constantly contactable.

Either they’re not equipped to do the job, or the job’s expectations need to radically change.

If a job simply cannot be done within a nine-hour working day, that’s not an issue with workers, but with the job itself.

We’re living in a bizarre world in which it’s perfectly reasonable – and often encouraged – to place caring about work as a higher priority than our own mental wellbeing, or actually being a person rather than a worker.

Sometimes, when I’m in the middle of an email thread or I can hear people squabbling about a minor detail of their working world, I feel a desperate need to stand up and proclaim: ‘you know we’re all hurtling towards death, right? You know the earth is dying?’

Not to get too morbid, but one day you will die. Your working hours will make up a rather significant portion of your time on this mortal realm… but why should they take over the grand majority? Why are we so willing to dedicate our entire headspace to a job?

We work for a few reasons. We need money to live (and thus to do things we enjoy… although we’re often working too hard to do those things, so this reason disappears). We might be lucky enough to enjoy our jobs and find them genuinely engaging. We want a sense of fulfillment and pride. If we’re lucky, we’ve found some purpose and meaning in the work we do.

Personally, I do my job because I need money to pay for rent, so I have a comfortable place to store my candles and various skincare, and feed a small cat. I find it fun and interesting, and think if I didn’t show up to work five days a week I would quickly get very, very bored.

Also, I’ve found a purpose in what I do, which is handy because I don’t want to reproduce but I do need to know I have some greater meaning in my general existence. That’s quite important to me, otherwise I lie in bed getting philisophical and wondering why I’m even here on this earth.

For me that purpose is connecting with people and making them feel less weird and alone in the world, or lifting them up for a moment of humour or joy, or sharing the stories of brilliant people doing brilliant things.

That’s not as important as saving sick children or solving world hunger, I’m aware, but it’s what keeps me going.

But I would never sacrifice my mental wellbeing or all the other bits of my life I enjoy for the sake of fulfilling that purpose a bit more. I’m not going to run myself ragged and miss out on actually living. Why are we killing ourselves to work when the whole point of working is being able to live?

Your job might be hugely important and essential. Good for you. You should still be able to complete it within working hours and without spending every waking moment of your life thinking about it. If you can’t, you shouldn’t be contorting your life to fit around work – it’s our entire working culture that needs to change.

We need to all – bosses and CEOs especially – remember that we’re humans trying to fill our moderately short lives with some sort of meaning. We’re not just machines built for the purpose of ticking through a to-do list. We’re all trying to be happy and fulfilled and work is just one part of that – it can’t be our entire existence.

That means actually sticking to working hours rather than encouraging coming in early and staying late.

It means not going absolutely ballistic at someone when they make a mistake.

It means not making someone feel miserable day in, day out the second they turn on their work computer.

It means making flexible working the norm, so it’s easy to actually do other things that give someone’s life meaning, whether that’s raising a child, writing a book, or protesting, or to do things that make us feel good (yes, including actually being able to sleep, thanks to a working schedule that matches up to our personal sleep cycles).

Essentially, it means remembering that whatever piece of work that needs doing can wait, that there are parts of life that are more important than filing that report or replying to an email. There has to be more to life than work, and our culture needs to radically change to make those other bits possible.

When you think about big concepts of the meaning of life and the destruction of our plant, who can truly care about going to a pointless meeting or agonising over the best way to end an email?

Stop letting work seep into every bit of your life. Stop expecting people who work for you to exist only to do whatever you say.

It’s time for humanity. It’s time to stop sticking to rigid structure just because they’re ‘the way things are done’. We decide the shape of our lives and what fills them. We can change things to make them better suit our actual wants and needs.

That might mean scrapping the five-day working week, banning work emails at the weekend, accepting flexible working as the norm, or allowing people to piss off and go travelling for a year to figure out what they want. Change is scary, but when work is so all-consuming that we’re anxious that we’re not able to play catch up during our time off, it’s oh so necessary.

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