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Going up:

Karl Lagerfeld

The fashion supremo died at the age of 85 on 19 February (AFP/Getty)

On Tuesday, luxury fashion house Chanel confirmed its creative director Karl Lagerfeld had died at the age of 85.


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Reports claim the designer passed away at the American Hospital in Paris. The news came after speculation regarding Lagerfeld’s health began circulating in January when he did not attend Chanel’s haute couture show. 

Tributes to the late designer subsequently poured in from a number of famous names including Gucci’s creative director Alessandro Michele, US first lady Melania Trump and Donatella Versace

Virginie Viard, dubbed Lagerfeld’s “right hand woman” has been named as the designer’s successor at Chanel.

She previously held the role of fashion creation studio director and has worked alongside Lagerfeld for more than three decades. 

While the fashion world mourned the loss of the designer, it wasn’t long before attention turned to Lagerfeld’s famous pet, Choupette.

According to French newspaper Le Figaro, Choupette might be entitled to Lagerfeld’s multi-million pound fortune under German law if she had been nominated as his “heir”.

Brit Awards feminism 

Beyonce and Jay Z accepted their Brit Award in front of a painting of Meghan Markle (Instagram)

As well as celebrating the most talented figures in the music industry, Wednesday’s Brit Awards delivered an indisputable feminist undertone

Among the standout moments was a short clip that showed Beyonce and Jay Z accepting their award for Best International Group. 

In the video, the couple could be seen admiring a painted depiction of Meghan Markle looking like the queen. 

Beyonce since explained that the painting was in honour of Black History Month

The 1975 frontman, Matt Healy, also used the band’s award for Best Group to speak about misogyny in the entertainment industry, while singer Jorja Smith dedicated her award to aspiring female artists. 

For her performance, Jess Glynne took to the stage with a legion of women, all of whom removed their makeup using hand towels in front of vanity mirrors. 

London Fashion Week

Vivienne Westwood staged a political protest for autumn/winter 2019 (PA)

This week the fashion crowd descended on London for a week-long celebration of British design.

Over the course of the week, a range of designers showcased their autumn/winter 2019 collections from established brands like Erdem, Roksanda, Simone Rocha and Burberry, to emerging names like Matty Bovan and Halpern.

While the clothes on the catwalk certainly captured the imaginations of fashion fans, it was the unexpected political theme that really got people talking. 

On Sunday, Vivienne Westwood delivered a show that saw actor Rose McGowan give a speech about consumerism. Then the executive director of Greenpeace, John Sauven, gave an impassioned address about the environmental consequences of oil plants, before the show concluded with Westwood herself skipping down the catwalk singing. 

Hundreds of activists also swarmed the Victoria Beckham show for a protest organised by activism group Extinction Rebellion, while Justice4Grenfell activists, including models Adwoa Aboah and Clara Paget, took to the stage to demand justice for the 72 victims who lost their lives in the Grenfell Tower fire in 2017.

Interval training

Interval training is thought to be more effective as a weight loss tool than moderate workouts (Getty)

Doing small bursts of high intensity training can be more effective for weight loss than moderate workouts, new research has found.

The research, conducted by scientists at the Federal University of Goias in Brazil, analysed data from more than 36 studies, analysing the data of more than 1,000 men and women of varying levels of fitness. 

The scientists noted all participants had lost weight from working out, whether they had been regularly doing interval training or moderate exercise.

However, those who did high intensity training had a 28.5 per cent greater reduction of weight.

According to the study’s findings, sprint interval training was the most effective form of exercise for weight loss and was noted as being even more effective when combined with regular moderate exercise.

Drag

‘RuPaul’s Drag Race’ is coming to the UK this year (Getty)

Following the news that RuPaul’s Drag Race is set to launch in the UK on BBC Three this year, it has now been revealed that television hosts Graham Norton and Alan Carr will be appearing on the show as celebrity judges.

BBC Three confirmed on Thursday that the two TV personalities will act as rotating resident judges, joining RuPaul, Michelle Visage and a celebrity guest judge each week.

“Becoming part of the Drag Race family makes me ridiculously happy,” Norton said in a statement. “I can’t wait to see what the UK drag queens bring to the party, but they better weeeeerk!”

While drag pageantry has become a popular phenomenon in recent years, the practice of men cross-dressing as women and vice versa has occurred for centuries.

You can find out more about the history of drag and the creation of RuPaul’s Drag Race here

Going down:

Homework

A new study found parents are struggling to help children with homework (Getty)

The majority of parents are struggling to help their children with homework, new research has found.

The study, conducted by Oxford Home Schooling, asked a group of 1,000 mums and dads with children in year three to answer questions from core subjects English, maths and science. 

Only one in 16 of the participants were able to answer all three of the questions correctly with nearly a quarter admitting they feel “pressurised” when asked by their child to help with homework.

More than three-quarters also revealed they often use the internet to help them answer any questions they’re struggling with.

The study found that men are more likely than women to feel confident helping their children with homework, with 39 per cent of the fathers tested feeling confident, in comparison to 28 per cent of the mothers.

Toxic masculinity 

Barack Obama has spoken out about the dangers of toxic masculinity (AFP/Getty)

From Gilette’s divisive advert to Donald Trump telling Jimmy Fallon to “be a man”, conversations surrounding toxic masculinity have skyrocketed in recent months.

So much so that former US president Barack Obama recently addressed the dangers of toxic masculinity during a conference for his My Brother’s Keeper initiative – a foundation launched by Obama in 2014 to “unlock the full potential of boys and young men of colour in America” through mentoring and educational programmes. 

During the conference, the former president spoke candidly about stereotypes of masculinity and the need to create spaces where young men of colour don’t feel the need to “act a certain way” in order to be respected. 

“All of us have to recognise that being a man is first and foremost being a good human,” the former president said.

“That means being responsible, working hard, being kind, respectful, compassionate. 

“If you’re confident about your strength, you don’t need to show me by putting somebody else down. Show me by lifting somebody else up.”

Fast fashion

Kim Kardashian West has called out fast fashion brands for copying high-end designs (AFP/Getty)

Kim Kardashian West has criticised fast fashion brands for copying high-end designs, describing the issue as “devastating”.

Earlier this week Kim Kardashian West tweeted about high street brands who “rip off” the designs of clothes she wears, expressing her disdain over companies who profit from the practice.

“It’s devastating to see these fashion companies rip off designs that have taken the blood, sweat and tears of true designers who have put their all into their own original ideas,” she stated.

“I’ve watched these companies profit off my husband’s work for years and now that it’s also affecting designers who have been so generous to give me access to their beautiful works, I can no longer sit silent.”

On 17 February Kim Kardashian West wore a vintage dress by French fashion designer Mugler at the Hollywood Beauty Awards.

Referencing the look on Twitter, she explained that in less than 24 hours Fashion Nova were selling a copy of the dress online.

Fashion watchdog Instagram account Diet Prada shared its own theory, suggesting that Kardashian West was involved in secret collaborations.

Imposter syndrome

Zoe Sugg has spoken out about dealing with imposter syndrome (YouTube/Zoella)

YouTuber Zoe Sugg has opened up about dealing with imposter syndrome, admitting it often leaves her “constantly doubting” her achievements.

In a post on Instagram the 28-year-old wrote: “I have major imposter syndrome at the moment!

“I’m constantly doubting everything I’ve achieved, everything I’m working on business wise and everything I’m working on in my personal life!”

“It’s such a peculiar feeling and nothing I do seems to make it ‘less so’,” she added, asking her followers whether they shared her anxieties.

“Be honest, we’re a happy, encouraging and very considerate bunch over here. A problem shared is a problem halved after all.”

Last year former first lady of the US Michelle Obama revealed she also dealt with imposter syndrome on a regular basis, explaining the feeling “never goes away”. 

“It doesn’t go away, that feeling that you shouldn’t take me that seriously. What do I know?” she said at a sold-out event at Royal Festival Hall in London.

“I share that with you because we all have doubts in our abilities, about our power and what that power is.

“If I’m giving people hope then that is a responsibility, so I have to make sure that I am accountable.”

Lack of breastfeeding facilities 

More than half of breastfeeding mothers have been forced to express in an unsuitable place (Getty/iStock)

A third of breastfeeding mothers have had to use a toilet cubicle when expressing milk at work, according to new research.

A survey, conducted by law firm Slater and Gordon, found that more than half of the 2,000 female participants said they been forced to express in an unsuitable place such as the staff room, their car or their desk.

As a result, almost a third said they have experienced problems while trying to express, including infections, anxiety and issues with their supply. 

What’s more, these difficulties resulted in 30 per cent of mothers stopping breastfeeding earlier than they would have liked. 

law specialist Paula Chan called the findings “concerning”, adding that “no mother should feel forced to express milk for her child in a toilet”.

“People would be horrified at the thought of food being prepared in such unhygienic conditions so it’s unacceptable that we are in a situation where that is considered to be an option when preparing milk for a baby,” she said.

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