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5 Everyday Foods That’s Aging You Ungracefully

There are numerous factors that contribute to how you physically age—genetics, sun exposure, smoking, lifestyle and many more. But the food you take also plays a major role on how you look and feel as you age. it can even feel like changes happen overnight, too. On day you love how glowing and young-looking your skin look, other days you notice fine lines somewhere on your face, making you look five year older.

Luckily, you can control what you see in the mirror! By avoiding these foods that seem to speed up appearance of wrinkles and dull skin, it’s achievable to look 10 years younger than your real age.

1. Microwaveable Dinners
Perhaps, you just got out of your 7 p.m. gym session and your intentions of whipping up a healthy home-cook dinner feels like a strenuous undertaking. With your extremely low energy, ou think of running to the nearest grocery for an instant dinner. But think about this first: frozen meals are high in sodium, which contributes to water retention that’s causing that bloated and aged appearance. Prep your meal before going to the gym or have some banana to refill a bit of energy so you can whip up a quick meal at home.

2. Energy Drinks
Your Red Bull habit is not doing any favor to your future 50-year-old self. All energy drinks are very acidic and high in sugar, which are the culprits of decayed and stained teeth that can age your smile. Plus, the sodium and caffeine content can cause dehydration, especially if you drink less water.

3. Ham, Sausage and Bacon
That strip of smoking hot bacon may look glorious on your plate, but we suggest swapping it for its healthier version of tempeh bacon instead. The amount of preservatives in bacon and other processed meats is quite high that it can form free radicals in the body. As mentioned, free radicals will oxidize the cells and alter the construction of your DNA. Over time, it can cause severe damage that may lead to formation of cancer cells.

4. Margarine
This popular butter substitute is rich in fats, and we all know that not all fats are created equal. Margarine—more often than not—gives fat a bad reputation. The bad component in margarine is the trans fat, which is the number one destroyer of the body’s hydration, as well as a contributor to more complicated diseases.

5. Deep-Fried Foods
Your favorite fried popiah and sotong balls may be satisfying to the taste, but not for your health. It’s not really the food that’s not beneficial for young-looking skin, but the cooking process they food needs t go through. When deep frying, the fat and oil is exposed to extreme temperature. When this happens, free radicals—the number one cause of aging skin—are formed. Not only are these foods damaging to your waistlines, but to your internal organs as well.

Overall, sticking to more natural foods help preserve your youthful beauty. For your every day meals, it’s always best to stick to fresh produce and non-processed meats and foods to ensure you look younger for longer.

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3 Signs that Tell You it is Time to Ditch Your Favorite Sneakers

A lot of what Singapore has to offer is easily accessible either by walking or by using public transport. However, while a reliable pair of walking shoes will last you a long time, sometimes it may cause a few problems and annoyances before you realize that you should have ditched it for a new one some time ago. Here’s how you know when:

1. Your shoes are worn out
This is the most visible and obvious sign that your favorite (and sometimes only) pair of shoes need to be replaced. However, there are less obvious signs of wear and tear that you need to look out for.

For instance, the shoe’s overall structural support or the midsole shock absorbers could already deteriorate even if you think the shoe looks good. This depends on how far and how much time you spend walking in a day.

If possible, try rotating between two or three pairs to allow them to rest, and will last much longer.

2. You have visible signs of foot stress (i.e. callouses, in-grown toenails, blisters)
You should never have to “break in” any pair of shoes just to make yourself comfortable with it, and no amount of breaking in will build up your immunity to these kinds of foot stress. If you experience signs of irritation, ditch them and buy yourself a new pair immediately.

The same could be said if you feel pain in your arches. Because you will end up walking in them, your shoes should provide you with as much comfort as possible, and the shoes you have probably aren’t doing you any favors.

Unsupportive footwear will cause the muscle and tendons in your foot to continuously flex and tighten throughout the day to keep your feet up, which can cause painful injuries resulting from overuse.

3. Your toes touch the front of your shoe
Just because your foot grazes the front of your shoe doesn’t mean it fits perfectly. In fact, much like our fingers, our feet also swell and shrink throughout the day. Ideally, the best time for fitting new shoes is late in the afternoon, as your feet will be at their biggest.

This is generally accepted as the “rule of thumb” when it comes to fitting, and it allows you the maximum wiggle room for your feet.

Because your shoes don’t always look like they’re about to give out, don’t wait for these signs to cause you problems after three to five months. As much as possible, if you experience them right now, it’s time to get a new pair.

(Disclaimer: This list is compiled in no particular order.)

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7 Freight Forwarding Factors to Remember

Whether it’s local freight or international freight, booking with a shipping company or logistics company can be a tedious task, that is why importers and exporters in Singapore are advised to hire a freight forwarding services representative to act as a liaison. Logistics services involving air freight and sea freight have complicated documentation and inspection processes, so make sure to remember these pointers when partnering with a freight forwarder.

1. Freight Forwarder Qualifications. A freight forwarding company in Singapore will assign a licensed freight forwarder or freight broker to assist you. Make sure that you ask for the experience and qualifications of the logistics services agent and to ask about the process of importing in and exporting from Singapore. The knowledge about the documentation, laws, and customs procedures is crucial because the freight forwarding company will be representing you when negotiating with the shipping company, trucking services, and airlines.

2. Freight Forwarding Documents and Fees. There are different requirements when you engage logistical freightage whether local freight or international freight. Import procedures require knowledge of the dutiable goods, customs procedures and permits, controlled and prohibited goods, trade documents, and depositing of goods. While in exportation, the freight forwarding services must assist the client in completing the necessary permits and documents to book a safe and fast transportation of the merchandise from Singapore.

3. Freight Forwarding Services. There are different requirements for the different free trade ports around the world if you are going for an international freight and various way for the freight forwarder to look for transportation services. You should look for a freight forwarder in Singapore that is right for the type of merchandise you want to import or export. This means that they must have connection with various logistics company, airlines, shipping company, and trucking and delivery services in and outside Singapore. Some of the best freight forwarding companies have years of experience in working with various clients.

4. Selection of Transportation. The mode of transportation may not be limited to one type. The freight forwarder must pick the best option that is available to get the merchandise to its destination safely and on time. But the selection of transportation will also depend on the airline and ocean carrier schedules, fuel cost, capacity, freight volume, regulations, and others.

5. International Freight Handling. International freight requires connections with various logistics services companies for both air freight and ocean or sea freight. Air freight is slightly expensive but is the fastest and safest option for the transportation of goods. Sea freight, however, can handle more types of cargo and is cheaper than air freight.

6. Partners and Affiliates. When it comes to international freight, the freight forwarding company must have connections outside of Singapore to ensure that the merchandise pass the customs inspection. This can be arranged by the consignee or receiver and arrange a freight forwarder to receive the merchandise. If this is the case, then the freight forwarder must have the flexibility to meet the arrangements.

7. Freight Forwarding Process. Freight forwarding, specifically international freight, has seven major processes. You can easily monitor the process by keeping in mind the following sequence: export haulage, export customs clearance, origin handling, import customs clearance, destination handling, import haulage, and delivery.

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What Can CRM Software Do for You?

Customer relationship management or CRM software is s type of sales management and reporting system that simplifies and streamlines the CRM system and practices of any office or business that needs to handle customer information.

To better understand what CRM software types like cloud CRM can do for your company in Singapore, let’s look at the benefits you can reap from sales reports processes, customer information consolidation, and the easy-to-understand sales management tools.

Make informed decisions more often
An effective CRM system will give management and employees the right tools to make informed decisions. Reviewing relevant data through a cloud CRM is a lot easier than having to sift through files manually. After all, information and easy access to it is the most essential step in discussing possible solutions and future plans for the business.

Improvement in sales
Managers can monitor and track the sales team’s activities more efficiently with the help of timely and accurate sales reports through a CRM software. It will allow sales management to increase coverage, track prospective sales, automate client connection and follow up, and and improve the team’s performance by looking for the weak spots and highlighting important skills. It is possible to even predict possible sales performance by reviewing the customized sales reports.

Find the best business practices
The most important benefit of a CRM software is the ability to determine bad or ineffective business practices and improve overall performance of the sales staff. Installing the program will not in itself solve everything right away, but you can slowly work your way towards your business goal because you have the data that you can act on. Sales management is easier because the CRM system provided by www.crystaldash.com gives you a bird’s eye view of opportunities, stagnant accounts, fragmented data, and sales team performance.

Helps your business grow
Although using a CRM software does not fully guarantee that your business will meet its target, you and your sales team will have a better chance at doing so with all the necessary tools at your disposal. The CRM system is not a one-time solution but a long-term partner in helping you achieve that goal. You can track that progress, make improvements, retain more customers, attract new clients or customers, and manage your market share through a CRM software. It grows as your business in Singapore grows, too, because you can easily measure the revenues, market share, and customer retention to predict possible outcomes.

Manage customers with less risk
The growth of a business is not possible without attracting new customer and earning the loyalty of the current customers. However, customer relationship management is a complicated process because there are various factors that must be considered including looking for opportunities to attract people with different qualities from your current loyal clients. It is easier to chase sales leads by keeping relevant information of possible customers, therefore increasing the chances of closing sales and hitting the sales target.

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How to Clean Your Action Figures

The common culprits that can destroy your collection of action figures are dust, moisture, heat and sunlight, cold, fluctuating temperatures, gravity, and oil and dirt. Even when the items are boxed and unopened, you still need to keep them in good condition.

Dusting
Dust isn’t as damaging as water and heat but it could make the display look less attractive. Dust could also get into tight spaces that are difficult to clean such as the action figure’s hands and the folds of the costume. If left for a long time, the dust will also form a cake. Keep them in closed shelves or cabinets to prevent dust from getting into them. Most collectors use canned air to blow out dust, clean cloth like a microfiber cloth to wipe off dirt or a duster called Swiffer duster that absorbs dust.

Washing
For dirt that cannot be removed by dusting or if the figure you bought is second-hand, fill a basin with lukewarm or cool water. Don’t mix detergent in the water just yet. Never use hot water because that could ruin the plastic and paint. If the figure can be disassembled, take it apart first. If the figure has decals and stickers, however, it’s best to spot-clean instead of soaking and brushing the figure. Soak the figure for at least 5 minutes in the water. Use liquid detergent, preferably something mild and unscented, and a soft-bristled brush to remove the dirt. Rinse with cool water then pat-dry. Lay out the figurine on the towel to dry. Don’t use a blower.

Spot-Cleaning
For action figures with stickers, decals and materials other than plastic, there is no need to submerge them in water. Figures made of metal should not be washed as well. Use a cotton swab instead. Moisten the tip with then wipe the dirty surface. You can also use a soft-bristled toothbrush for other stains.

Fabrics
Some action figures come with sewn clothes. Do not try to wash these miniature clothes if there is no need to do so. But if the garment looks dirty, check the box for the care instructions. Don’t soak the clothes in the water too long. Use cool water and mild detergent then swish lightly. Air-dry under the shade and avoid ironing the clothes.

Polishing
Wiping the action figure with clean cloth will do the trick. There is no need to use polishing materials unless stated in the instructions on the box. Use a microfiber cloth to prevent scratches. Rub the surface in a gentle circular motion. Avoid rubbing on the stickers and decals because they could come off. Figures made from PVC like Nendoroids get sticky over time when left in the plastic boxes for too long. You should take them out once in a while.

Storage
The best way to prevent action figures from getting dirty is to avoid too much handling and exposure to the elements. Pick a glass case to display your collection and make sure you keep them away from children (most action figures are for people aged 15 years old and above). Don’t place them near heat sources or where moisture can easily form.

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How Action Figures Are Made

The beauty of action figures is that they are not like your regular plastic toys made for minors aged 15 and below. Action figures for hobbyists and collectors are usually hand-made and hand-painted by artisans using only the best materials. They are also not mass-produced and some are even made of rare materials like metals and glass.

The Prototype
The first step in creating an action figure is to pick which character should have an action figure. You will often see characters from popular anime, comics and video games. A design is then made through sketches, taking note of the character’s signature poses, items and facial expressions. After that, a prototype is made using clay and aluminum wires. The wires form the frame of the figure while the clay gives it shape. The clay is then carved or shaped then baked. All the details are added, with the face usually made last.

Materials Used
Most action figures are made using plastic resin like the acrylonitrile butadeine styrene or ABS. Other types of plastic such as polyethylene and polypropylene are also used. For hand-sewn costumes, the most commonly used fabrics are nylon and rayon. To put in all the details, artists use acrylic paint. There are also action figures that contain electronic components for voice, sound and lights. Exclusive editions are sometimes made using bronze, glass and other metals.

Molding
Using the prototype, molds are created from the various parts of the figure. Action figures usually have removable parts or articulation. This requires the manufacturers to create the figure piece by piece and not as one single plastic (that is for figurines, not action figures). The joints or points of articulation contain washers and small gears that will allow them to move.

Assembling
When all the parts have been produced, the pieces are assembled to form the figure. Some parts are fused together using either glue or a technique called high frequency vibration. The clothing made from fabric are produced separately from the parts. Then all the details are placed and painted on such as the face, costume and accessories. These are very detailed and must be done with precision so that the figures look as close as possible to the characters.

Box and Packaging
Most action figures are placed in a cardboard box with a plastic window. Others come in a plastic blister with a cardboard backing. There are products that are placed in PVC packaging with a bubble for the action figure and its accessories. The PVC is sometimes shaped like a tube. The packaging is also important in determining if you’ve purchased licensed and original action figures. The details should be correct and accurate. Some manufacturers also place stickers as an additional guarantee.

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Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth Cravings with These 5 Beloved Singaporean Desserts

Singaporean cuisine is rich in itself. From the many fusion meals to desserts available throughout the city state, the food is considered a melting pot of rich influences from different cultures. More than anything, all walks of life truly enjoy the rich food choices they are endowed with. Even tourists do not miss out on the gastronomic adventure Singaporean food has to offer.

If you’re planning to visit Singapore, include tasting the many local desserts on your bucket list. Though they are less famous than the signature dishes sold in hawker centers (think of Hainanese chicken rice), trying them out can also become one highlight of your Singapore experience!

Pandan Cake
If the British have crumpets, Singapore has pandan cake. It is a light chiffon cake accentuated with the flavor of Pandan leaves. The inclusion of pandan is also what gives it a nice green hue. Notably, the cake is also popular across neighboring Southeast Asian countries. Pandan cake is usually served with a cup of warm Milo, which is a drink similar to hot chocolate.

Grass Jelly
Another common favorite dessert among local Singapore residents is the grass jelly (called as chin chow). It is derived from boiled mint stalks added with starch until they turn into their jelly texture. The jelly is cut into cubes — which are then served as toppings over ice thus creating a refreshing sweet treat. The perfect choice if you want to beat the summer heat!

Ice Kachang
Singapore’s ice kachang is similar to that of Korean Bingsu, which is a sweet icy treat commonly shared amongst friends. Shaved ice is drenched with flavorful syrup and then topped with jelly, red beans, and sweet corn among the many choices of your choice. It also comes with unique toppings, one of the most famous being durian fruit.

Sweet/Tissue Prata
Prata originates from the Indian roti prata, which is a type of flatbread. It has been turned into a Singaporean dessert which is made of paper thin prata (thus the name ‘tissue’) along with different sweet syrups. This dessert prata is made crispy yet not too oily at the same time. It is commonly drizzled with chocolate sauce, but local flavors also incorporate Kaya — a traditional coconut jam.

Pineapple Tart
A traditional Asian dessert, pineapple tart is also popular in Singapore especially during the holidays. This butter pastry is well-loved by locals and tourists alike. Some bakeries fill these treats with mildly spiced pineapple jam, while others simply glaze them to give it that beautiful golden color. Check out a local bakery during your Singapore visit and you are likely to find some pineapple tarts!

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Where Can You Keep Your Money Safe and Sound?

The road to financial stability is not an easy road to take. You are bound to deal with setbacks in the long run, and there may even be times when your finances run staggeringly low. In order to avoid getting yourself in such risky situations, it is important that you figure out the best option you have in storing away your money and savings.

Why should you not consider placing your money under the mattress?
While this is one way to hide your money, it is a very unwise decision to make. In the event of a thief break-in, your mattress is among the places which will be inspected. The same thing goes with digging up a hole in your backyard to stow away your cash savings in a glass jar. Your money isn’t gold that should be put under the ground.
If anything, you are signing yourself up for the destruction of your money’s physical condition — and you can think of it as wasting your money instead.

Have a safety deposit box
Stashing your cash in a safety deposit box is a smarter move than hiding it under the mattress or burying it under the cold hard ground. Having a safety box is ideal if you want to be secure, but it still doesn’t do much. It doesn’t earn you interest from your money and it only makes it stink. In the event someone successfully hacks their way through your passcode combination, your money is at risk to be stolen as well.

Sign up for a savings account
Trusting the bank with your money is still encouraged especially if you want to generate interests in the long run. A savings account is a good place to start. Though it doesn’t pay high interests compared to other accounts, you can still be ensured your money is in good hands. A savings account can also enable you to go around cashless, meaning you can withdraw money only when you need it. You can also use your savings account card to pay in some major establishments.

Convert to a high-interest savings account
After years of working, the income you’re generating may enable you to convert to a high-interest savings account. This is ideal if you want to generate greater interests over the course of time since this type of account yields a higher interest rate compared to your standard savings account. The money you can get off interests can be used for investments, starting a small business, availing a life plan, among others. Regardless, it also requires a larger amount for your initial deposit — and you might want to prepare for that.

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How to Make Paper Flowers for a Wedding Bouquet

While nothing truly beats a wedding bouquet made of live flowers, there are some problems that can come with trying to make the flowers last as long as possible throughout the wedding without drying out and withering.
Paper flowers may not be the best substitute for the real thing, but when done right, they can come close – and they can even be used instead of real flowers for floral decor. Fortunately, you can also easily make them. All you need to make them are colored paper, pipe cleaner, scissors and glue, as well as a base, and you’re all set to go.
Here’s how to make amazing paper flowers in a few simple steps:

1. Lay three to four sheets of colored paper (it can also be in different types of paper) down on a flat surface and stack them on top of each other. Once that’s done, fold the paper by taking the bottom edge and folding it over by one inch.

Then, flip the sheets of paper over and fold them back on the opposite side. The folded paper should look like a closed paper fan or an accordion once this step is finished.

2. Next, fold the folded paper in half as well as an inch or two of pipe cleaner around the folded paper. Be sure to twist the cleaner, as this will act as the stem of the flower. Placing the pipe cleaners in opposite directions will give different color combinations.

3. Cut the folded paper into three equal pieces and adjust them if needed to make the pipe cleaner at the center of the flower. Trim the outer edges of the paper into rounded edges.

If you like, the paper trimmings can be saved to make confetti that the flower girl can use during the ceremony.

4. Open the folded paper while holding the stem. Pull the topmost layer of the paper all the way around. This will show you the end result, but be careful not to rip the paper, especially if you’re using crepe or Japanese paper.

5. Once you have your finished product, you can repeat the process to make as many as you like. You can even bend the pipe cleaners to make the flowers bend, which will allow you to make different bouquet arrangements in different containers.

You can also make the same flowers but in different sizes, as well as in different colors combinations depending on the theme of your wedding. When placing them in containers you can add a little more spruce to the arrangements by adding ribbons.

Plastic foliage can also work well when paired with paper flowers. Be sure to use a good glue that will stick the pipe cleaner to the plastic.

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An Introduction to the Tea Culture in Singapore

The tea market has been around for hundreds of years and its popularity has stayed the same, if not reaching more popularity. It’s really not a mystery since, aside from the calmness and relaxation that you get with every sip, there are a lot of benefits to drinking tea.

Singapore not only has kopi, but also has its very own tea culture, and locals enjoy it made in many different ways other than just tea leaves and hot water. Here are the different tea beverages you can try if it’s your cup of tea (pun intended):

Coffee Tea
This is the kind of tea you will find at a coffee shop, and is one of the more traditional forms of preparing and serving it.

The key to this method lies in the use a large metal cylinder and a sock (tea sock – this is where the hot tea is stored). This type of tea comes in different types and can either be served with condensed or evaporated milk and sugar (usually, it’s served with both).

There are a lot of terms used when it comes to serving this type of tea, which can be confusing at first, but they’re easy to familiarize and remember once you get the hang of it.

Bubble Tea
Though bubble tea receded in popularity after the 90’s, it has since made a comeback in Singapore. Common types of bubble tea are either red, green, or even milk tea, which are all flavored with syrup and sugar, with tapioca pearls or jelly and pudding serving as the pudding.

Teh Tarik
Teh Tarik, meaning “pulled tea” in Malay, is tea that is made with condensed or evaporated milk. The name comes from the process of “pulling” the drink (skilled makers usually use two cups to transfer the drink back and forth) when it is being prepared.

Black tea is usually used in making Teh Tarik. Its sister drink, Teh Halia, is milk tea with an added ginger flavor, and is prepared with the same method as Teh Tarik.

Chinese Tea
This timeless classic is enjoyed by many in Singapore, usually a drink of choice by the older generations rather than the younger.

There are two methods of preparing this tea. The first one is with the traditional tea set, which involves a lot of steps ranging from adding the hot water to the ground up leaves in the pot to pouring the tea into several smaller cups.

The second way of preparing Chinese tea is by adding the tea leaves into a pot of water and then bringing the water to a boil, and the result is a tea that is then poured into cups for people to enjoy.

Chinese tea is usually enjoyed as a group endeavor (hence the tea set), but it can also be prepared for just one to relax as an afternoon drink.

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