Influencer marketing is not an emerging trend anymore but a strategic part of companies’ overall digital marketing budget.
While a decade ago, influencer marketing did not exist, the adoption of influencer marketing is rising fast and 93% of marketers use it today.
Ignoring the benefits of influencer marketing campaigns can spell doom for companies and social influencers. But what is influencer marketing, and how can you develop an influencer marketing strategy that works for you?
What is influencer marketing?
Influencer marketing is a marketing strategy in which brands partner with social media influencers to promote their products and services.
Influencers have an engaged and large following on social media platforms due to their knowledge, expertise, or unique point of view. They typically share content with their followers on diverse social media platforms such as:
• Online blogs on WordPress, Wix, or other online content management websites
To strengthen your influencers online conversational marketing strategy you now need to consider seriously introduce A.I Technology. A Conversational Chatbot can interact with all your followers simultaneously providing them with advice, links, offers and much more.
Recent survey showed that 90% of ecommerce websites generally looked the same. And played little to no role in a customer’s decision to chose who they will purchase from. This means that thousands of pounds spent per month on traditional advertising has little to no contribution on over all profits.
But despite these setbacks, some businesses are earning more profits than ever while spending less time and resources then their competitors. No matter where your business is located, and no matter what condition its in, you can attract high paying customers in droves using little to known but effective techniques I’ll introduce just a couple of them to you now.
Did you know that many of your customers are willing to pay you more and buy more of your products if you simply presented it in the right way to them. You can also acquire more customers by simply marketing smarter and more efficiently as well.
One way to immediately increase your front end sales is to improve your sales letter offering.
Take control of your headline
You donʼt need to test and tweak a million different things until you start to doubt your own offerings, in order to bump up your conversions the ﬁrst thing you want to do is just test and tweak the headline. Leave everything the same …just start changing the headline and see what happens.
You test your headline ﬁrst or in some cases your email subject heading and you do that simply by just making a more powerful, more compelling headline that in my opinion should solve a problem for the reader. Once you have control over your headline then you can start testing the body of your content.
Use A.I technology by introducing conversational marketing
Start engaging with your social media followers especially if you have thousand of followers across your social media platforms?
Did you you can have a conversation, pass on details, resolve problems, show videos, get visitors to schedule appointment themselves, buy from your store, register on your courses, competition or events and much much more without you lifting a finger. A.I online virtual assistant can help you to:-
➢ Qualify your website visitors and direct them to what they want
➢ Increase your website or social media conversions
➢ Build a bigger email subscriber list
➢ Collect valuable feedback data to improve visitor experience
➢ Give them quick answer to questions
➢ Present a more streamlined buying experience
➢ Resolve complaint or problem in real time
➢ To get a more detailed answer to a query
➢ Link to calenders, videos, courses seamlessley
➢ Reduce your online admin time by 50%
Test your offering
The Key To It All. By testing your offer I mean you might want to, say, instead of selling an eBook for £12.99 – you might want to offer a physical version of your package for £27.00 + shipping and handling. You could offer three easy payments of £9.00 by a paypal subscription to a persons credit card. See?
Thatʼs actually £14.00 in total …over double the price …using a risk reversal offer that seems cheaper at ﬁrst glance.
In fact, that offer would probably convert better. So it’s important to tweak your offer a lot. In the words of Dan Kennedy, “ITʼS THE OFFER, STUPID.” Iʼll give you another one.
Trial offers are another fantastic way to persuade potential customers to register, use your services and you can then up sell them afterwards (no spamming)
Testing your offer structure.
Instead of offering a trial, you could ask for a fair sum upfront £99.99 …and then gave them the big box of stuff as a bonus. They get the same thing but you simply structured the offer differently. Just imagine if you got 100 people to take your service there and then online, fees right up front. No trial, no launch, no afﬁliates you could see just how profitable and structured your offering truly is.
The number 1 complaint about launching and running a online #business or posting links is generating enough enquiries to make a #sale! and capturing contact details to respond
Every New Year I have always checked for the top business growth tips and trends.
This year I have decided to present my own because we the business community are still living in unprecedented times of uncertainty, fear, transformation, deception, confusion, and outright disruption of the old ways of doing business.
I am Diane Shawe founder of Virtual Speedy Services Ltd (which I gave birth to during the first lockdown) and author of ‘Answer 77 Questions about your business to avoid business failure’ shares her top small business growth strategies for the year ahead.
2021 has been a year of rapid transformation across all industries as the business community has dealt with shifting customer buying activities and economic challenges, as well as mitigating hot-button issues such as the pandemic and people’s changing conception of work life balance. In a year filled with change, there are some trends which are going to be firmly fixed into 2022 that you and your business should seriously build into your growth plans.
To lead your business in the right direction as we head into 2022, here are my humble 10 small business growth strategies.[
1. Prioritise your business culture
Throughout the pandemic, businesses have been dealing with “The Great Resignation” as workers are quitting their jobs at record-high rates. One of the reasons for this is that people are changing their definitions of what they consider a healthy work-life balance and what they want in a company culture.
“The pandemic has shifted the way people incorporate work into their life, whether it’s moving to another county for cheaper housing or not going into the office every day and getting the opportunity to do remote or hybrid work,” Diane states.
Diane goes on further to state that “Not all solutions are made equal, and culture is now a part of that. “A big factor for employees, in addition to salary and benefits, is culture, so have a culture strategy in place.”
2. Consider hiring more freelance workers
The number of gig workers, freelancers and contractors has grown exponentially over the last few years and they make up a large portion of workers within the current market.
“Small business owners will now be able to bring in more specialised freelance workers to carry out tasks without having to deal with the hiring and training costs that are often associated with recruiting a full-time employee,” said Diane. “With the importance of being agile in today’s economic environment … as well as the rise of remote work, … skilled outsource
Peopleperhour.com and fiverr.com are great places to start.
3. Work with micro-influencers
While small businesses may be competing against larger businesses to work with online influencers, collaborating with micro-influencers is an option to consider.
“As influencer marketing is becoming more popular than ever… micro-influencers are going to be the best option for small businesses because they don’t cost as much and they are more open to collaborating with small businesses too,” explained Diane. “With a couple of these small influencers helping [your business] reach specific audiences, growth will not be an impossible feat in 2022.”
4. Leverage the way you supply your products and services.
Distributors and businesses across the country dealt with supply chain issues with the continuation of the COVID-19 pandemic and its subsequent economic disruptions. In 2022, businesses must be aware of scarcities within the supply chain and get ahead of manufacturing and transportation challenges by working collaboratively with their suppliers.
Checkout companies like Amazon who can provide a fulfillment service for your orders. Consider moving to a drop shipping manufacturer or warehouse so as to reduce your cash investment in slow moving stock.
5. Educate client and partners your new paradigms
It’s important to inform your clients and partners about changes you’re making to better benefit your business across a shifting economic landscape. If the changes don’t land, it may be time to consider other options,
Many businesses are painfully aware how much the talent pool has changed. Working with potential employees, client partners to educate them on the new management styles needed, increased compensation packages and other aspects of recruitment and retention is very important.
6. Prepare for potential contracting opportunities
Almost 80 new businesses were created every hour across the UK in the first half of 2021, according to research by iwoca – one of Europe’s largest small business lenders.
Analysis of Companies House data reveals that 340,534 businesses were registered in the UK between January and June 2021, an increase of 32% from 257,243 over the same time period in 2019.
London dominates list of areas to start a business
iwoca’s Small Business HotSpots UK 2021 reveals that Camden saw the largest number of businesses registered out of all UK local authorities, with 19,755 new companies – a rate of more than four and a half new firms every hour.
The second largest number of new businesses were registered in Hackney (13,646) followed by 10,151 in Westminster. London’s local authorities make up half of the top 10, which also includes Birmingham in 5th with 7,442 new firms and Kent placing 7th with 6,504 businesses.
London saw over one third of the new registrations with 120,338, followed by the South East (37,573) and North West (33,640). The capital city also witnessed the largest increase in new business registration compared to 2019 of 59%, with the West Midlands registering a 49% rise followed by the North East (28%).
Christoph Rieche, iwoca CEO and co-founder, said: “It is fantastic to see the creation of so many businesses during the first half of this year, they are testament to the entrepreneurial spirit which characterises our vibrant economy.
“Many of these businesses will be unnecessarily constrained by cashflow. At iwoca we turn cashflow into a superpower enabling them to grow faster and worry less. We look forward to working with many of them.”-
Why is such a growth happening?
A survey I read stated that 39% of people in current jobs are going to quit within the next 12 months, which is not great for an employer, but suggests a start of a business revolution is happening.
What advice would I give to somebody looking to start a business?
There is never a good time to do it and you just must go for it. It’s all encompassing and it’s a phenomenon. I just decided to go for it in 2000 and have never looked back. However you can be clever about it though – can you cut down your hours in your current role or could you work part-time initially? Explore your options wisely.
7. Get creative on sales and marketing opportunities
The digital marketing landscape has become increasingly challenging due to congestion and evolving regulations, said Diane Shawe of Virtual Speedy Services Ltd
“This is forcing many traditionally digital companies to explore other sales channels and marketing strategies,” she said.
To mitigate these challenges, Shawe said her company is getting creative by helping other companies engage with A.I. Conversational Marketing Technologies with its engaging methods.
8. Widen your business’s online footprint
Small businesses must adapt and be “practical” when it comes to sales, as consumers continue to favor online and mobile shopping.
“Businesses need to widen their online footprint to gain a significant proportion of customers from the current market,” said Diane. “A simple way to sell products is to have a sellers account on your popular social media or estore platforms. To sell services, … list [your company] on freelance and contract websites.” Also create a blog and YouTube website for reviewing products, testimonials, advice and tips. Become the expert in your field. Entry competitions, exhibitions, network meetings.
9. Learn video SEO strategies to rank higher on search engines
Video marketing has become an integral part of a successful marketing strategy with the rise of live videos on platforms like TikTok and Instagram. It’s estimated that by 2022, videos will account for 82% of all consumer traffic. That’s why video SEO should be a top priority for businesses in 2022.
“Small businesses that incorporate short-form videos into their website posts will see more organic traffic coming from search engines,” explained Gilmour. “As TikTok continues to grow, search engine algorithms will shift to articles and posts that include short-form videos. Short-form videos from TikTok and YouTube may even become the main point of ‘how to’ searches.”
10. Utilise partnership marketing to reach a broader audience Partnership marketing is a strategic collaboration that gives you and your partner company a chance to reach a wider audience together, explained Diane Shawe, founder of Virtual Speedy Services Ltd.
“Collaboration with another company can aid in the development of better marketing initiatives that benefit both parties, If your target clients are similar, you may pool your resources to better your marketing techniques, build your brands and expand your audience reach.”
Start to use smart customer acquisition techniques such as collaborating with discount giants such as wowcher, groupon or discount voucher websites to help get your business name, brand or services directly into potential customers mobile.
“Another example, if a consumer purchases a product from you, you can provide a discount coupon that they can use to purchase discounted products from your business partner,” said Diane. “Co-branding of a product or project can also boost both companies’ marketing power.”
Virtual Speedy Services Ltd is set up to provide a suite of services for Small and Medium size businesses to help them efficiently and quickly Setup or expand their business. Our core service is A.I technology by designing conversational marketing chatbots to generate quality business leads or engage online visitors in real time. We populate and generate impressive business plan and 5 years projections for focus, raising finance along with smart eCommerce website, streamlined social media tools and an effective google verified website. We think of ourselves as your Virtual Personal Assistance who will help streamline your business development and growth without all the drama.
The effects of drinking Alkaline water on our body
We’ve all heard that drinking water is good for us and we’re often told to drink around 2 litres a day. But all waters are not equal. What is good quality water and how can it norish the body?
I work with a lot of clients who are experiencing hair loss, low energy, joint aches and pains and even weak nails. I had those same issues until I started to explore the benefits of drinking good quality water. What I mean by this is alkaline water?
I was reading and watching a lot of healthy eating books and videos by Dr Sebi https://drsebiscellfood.com/ and he kept mentioning Alkaline foods and drinks. So I set out to find out how I could drink Alkaline water everyday effortlessly and came across pH Replenish which I will introduce you to later. However what I really wanted to do is share the benefit of drinking alkaline water.
So does alkaline water have even more health benefits than regular tap or bottled water?
Firstly, why is drinking all that water so good for us?
Over half of our body is water! Our cells, organs and bones all need water to function properly. In fact, our brains and hearts are made up of about 70% water.
Although drinking water doesn’t seem very glamorous, if we become dehydrated we can quickly begin to lose concentration and focus, become lethargic and have sugar cravings. In the long term, dehydration can result in organ failure and humans can only survive for 3 or 4 days without water.
OK, So water is good for us. But what’s the difference between regular water from the tap and alkaline water?
Regular tap water usually has a neutral PH of 7 (although it can be lower) whilst alkaline water has a PH over 7.
7 is neutral and any lower than 7 is acidic. As an example, corrosive liquids like lemon juice have a PH of around 2.5.
Water usually has a natural PH higher than 7 which comes from the minerals and salts found in the earth. But as the water passes through our man-made pipes and water distribution systems it loses a lot of it’s minerals and as a result the PH levels drop.
The blood in our bodies has a PH around 7.4 and the systems in our bodies work hard to maintain that level. Many alkaline water fans believe that drinking filtered water with a higher PH means that we are giving our bodies a helping hand to keep to that healthy PH of 7.4.
Are there any other advantages to drinking alkaline water?
1 Reducing acid levels within our bodies
It’s widely believed that drinking alkaline water can help to reduce or balance the acid levels within our bodies.
Having too much acid in our body can result in a long list of issues including fatigue, confusion, joint pain and inflammation, headaches, an elevated heart rate and digestion problems. This ‘acidosis’ occurs when our kidneys cannot remove all the excess acid from our body.
Acid in our body can also strip important minerals like calcium and magnesium from our bones which can lead to diseases like osteoporosis.
Cancer is also known to thrive in acidic environments and struggles to survive in alkaline environments. The opportunity to reduce acid in the body could be a significant benefit of drinking alkaline water for many people.
2 Anti-oxidant effects
Alkaline water is high in anti-oxidants. Anti-oxidants are great for our body and our overall health. They help us to keep repairing our cells to keep us looking and feeling fit and healthy.
Another benefit that drinking alkaline water can have for our bodies is an anti-ageing effect. A 2016 study on mice which ran for three years suggested that drinking alkaline water increased their life span significantly.
4 A treatment for acid reflux
A report by Dr. Jamie Koufman concluded that alkaline water with a PH of 8.8 can work as an effective treatment for people who suffer from acid reflux. Alkaline water has the ability to neutralise the stomach acid causing this unpleasant disease.
The molecules in alkaline water are smaller than in our regular tap water. This means that our bodies can absorb alkaline water more easily without that bloated feeling that regular water can sometimes give you.
6 Reducing high blood pressure
One study carried out in Shanghai discovered that drinking alkaline water for 3 to 6 months brought high blood pressure, high blood sugar and high blood lipid levels back to normal.
7 Decreasing blood thickness
A paper Weidman et al found that drinking alkaline water after exercise helps to thin out the blood faster then normal water. This is useful to aid recovery after exercise and could be potentially life saving for individuals suffering from thickened or hardened arteries who want to improve their fitness with less risk.
8 Preventing obesity
Many alkaline water enthusiasts report that it helps with weight loss. Backing up this claim, a 2013 study found that when obese mice drank alkaline water for 7 weeks they lost weight compared with mice drinking regular water but eating the same diet.
The benefits of drinking alkaline water are very promising and many people who drink alkaline water report considerable health benefits. However, many of these studies and reports have only been carried out in labs or on a small scale so it would be nice to see more research demonstrating the many benefits of alkaline water.
Are there any side effects to drinking Alkaline water?
As with anything, if you consume too much there can be negative effects. Although it is extremely unusual, an over consumption of alkaline products could lead to alkalosis. Having too much alkaline in the body can bring on the symptoms of nausea and vomiting. However, if we drink alkaline water alongside a healthy and varied diet we would be very unlikely to experience this effect.
Slowly increasing the amount of alkaline water that we drink allows our bodies to adapt to the increased mineral content and higher PH and reduces the likelihood of any unwanted side effects.
How can I get alkaline water in my own home?
Installing a water filter is the easiest way for us to access unlimited alkaline water and Invigorated Water offers a variety of alkaline water filter systems to suit every home.
Counter top filters for kitchens with plenty of space hold enough water for the entire family. Smaller pitcher filters will fit easily into the fridge door where you can keep them cool.
Or, there faucet filters are a great option to easily provide alkaline water in your home and are easy to install.
If you are on the go and want to make sure that you have your alkaline water with you, try one of our bottle filters. Not only do they make your water taste better, they also look great.
You can also benefit from using alkaline water in your shower.
When you shower, water is vaporized into steam which you inhale as you shower. By installing a shower filter such as the PH Rejuvenate shower head filter, which increases the PH of your water you’ll know that you are breathing in safe, alkaline steam rather than potentially harmful, acidic water.
Showering with alkaline water can also be good for your skin. One study found that applying alkaline water to the sun damaged skin of mice helped to reduce the damage. Alkaline water has an anti-inflammatory effect that was also seen in people bathing in high PH spring water. Many of our customers report that their hair and skin feels noticeably softer and smoother after showering under our shower head filters.
Another advantage of the Invigorated Water filters is that they can remove any unwanted toxins, chemicals and heavy metals from our drinking water whilst adding in healthy minerals like magnesium and calcium.
Pollutants often work their way into our water supply and can be missed by our government water treatment stations, particularly if our water is carried through old pipes, across long distances.
Increasing the PH of your drinking water to make it alkaline, removing pollutants and adding in the healthy minerals allows your body to thrive. By choosing to drink filtered, alkaline water you are looking after your health in one simple, easy step.
So I hope you found this article useful, I have been drinking alkaline water for the past 18 months and have seen and felt the difference.
Worthy contenders of the UK get shortlisted in the first ever Great British Hair & Beauty Awards 2021 after the Lockdown
Following the success of The Hair & Beauty Awards in Scotland, England, Northern Ireland and Wales, Creative Oceanic are proud to present The Great British Hair & Beauty Awards.
The Great British Hair and Beauty Awards 2021 are an exclusive celebration of the hair and beauty gurus that operate in this country. Following the overwhelming response from the public and the phenomenal number of nominations received, the full list with finalists from the South of the UK has now been revealed.
The glamorous ceremony will take place in November 2021 and will celebrate professionals known for their perfection that have gone above and beyond in the salon and made a real difference in the industry with their excellent services.
Diane Shawe owner of Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extensions & Hairloss Specialist Salon states “To be named as a finalist highlights how hardwork and commitment can pay off. With hundreds of capable candidates for each category and a panel of judges looking at the finer details, just to make the shortlist is an outstanding achievement. What also makes it more important is the fact that we have also had to deal with a pandemic and closure.”
The elegant event seeks to acknowledge and honour the talented individuals, teams and salons, whose sole aim is to provide their customers with innovative services and treatments that really work, improving their appearance and confidence.
Top beauticians, hair extensions consultants, hairstylists, freelancers and barbers amongst others will gather together to celebrate their achievements and their efforts that put in daily to leave their customers with the best of impressions. The black-tie ceremony promises to be one of the most memorable celebrations in the industry’s calendar this year, with many accolades ready to be presented to the deserving winners.
A spokesperson for The Great British Hair and Beauty Awards, said: “We would like to thank the public for their participation in our nomination process.
“The Hair and Beauty Awards have become a stable event over the years and aim to showcase those who have shown great commitment, professionalism, creativity and care for the client. Therefore we are so excited to host the inaugural Great British Hair & Beauty Awards 2021.
Diane goes on further to state that “No matter who you are, your background, culture, age or gender, when you have problems with your hair, you want a non invasive quick solution to the problem which can help with ones own self esteem when you feel at your most vunerable. Even those who just simple want a makeover for a wedding, special occasion, work or for personal reasons can be helped”
The Hair and Beauty Awards state that “We hope to provide a platform to thank and appreciate the work of the professionals who have pushed the boundaries in a difficult time and had the continuous support of their customers.
Did you know that Sales of beauty products in Britain have outstripped France and now exceed £4 billion. And the British love of luxury and everyday hair and beauty including personal care products shows no signs of receding. Meanwhile, the industry is quick to innovate, including forthcoming hair, hair extensions and personal care product ranges covering “active beauty” and “active hair” tied into the huge health and well-being market, the rise of synthetic heat tollerant hair that feels and looks like real hair, temperature and water-activated products, water repellant and high gloss hair products and even personalised beauty regimes linked to DNA analysis.
Hair & Beauty Franchise Ideas
Having the backing of a franchiser in the hair and beauty industry can be vital, as you are guaranteed well-known and trusted procedures, products, and you can tap into a wealth of business and product support, plus training and marketing services.
Thanks to the power of the internet, opening your own salon is no longer a lonely standalone task. A new breed of entrepreneurs has risen up and is taking the Hair & beauty industry by storm. They supply a growing range of specialist services and products often promoted via social media and video blogs.
There is also a thriving marketplace for, specialists who are looking to set up their own Hair Extensions & Hairloss business.
You’ll find a massive opportunity at Need A Hair Makeover Franchise!
For many people in Britain and throughout Europe, hair loss, thin hair and damaged hair is a major problem. You can help them to get all the help that they need for a full-on hair makeover with the simplest of solutions.
With the help of our franchise set-up, you can:
* Duplicate a real, genuine business that allows you to help others.
* Set up a business that consistently provides an impressive return on investment.
* Put together a business that helps you assist real people with genuine needs.
* Develop a meaningful career path for yourself that has rewards for years to come.
* Impressive returns on your investment
From ordinary hair to Specialist Hair Services
Checkout our their Franchise Opportunity which includes Business Plan, Raising Finance, Training and launching your businness with full support.
Find out if you could secure your area today. Request a brochure or Click to have a chat http://bit.ly/3jYM20b
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Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extensions & Hair loss Specialist Salon received the ‘Best Salon for Hair Extensions’ and ‘Creative Image of the Year’ 2020′ at the Salon Awards.
Diane Shawe Signature & Celebrity Hair Extension Specialist and owner of Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extensions & Hair loss Specialist Salons was launched 4 years ago to help people with Hair Challenges by disguising thin hair, damaged hair, hereditary problems or bald patches caused by chemicals, alopecia illness or medical treatment.
Diane has trained over 4000 students worldwide through her Hair Extensions Training Academy since 2005 and is also the author of ‘Getting Started in the Hair Extensions Business’ and ‘How hair Extensions are Sourced, treated and Graded’ Her goal was always to launch a franchise business model and made the first stages of this by and selling her first Franchise just before the Covid 19 lockdown in March 2020 and has been patiently waiting to get things back on track.
Diane’s initial excitement in selling her first franchise turned out to be a long drawn out waiting game but she still held out hope that both her and the franchisee would come out the other end unscathed, safe and still excited
Diane said: “We really do consider ourselves to be not only the best Hair Extensions and Hair loss Salon in the West Midlands but one of the best business opportunity for anyone wanting to open a specialist salon with impressive returns!
She goes on further to say “Just being a finalist would have been a massive achievement, but to win two awards was amazing considering the year we have had!” about the awards she goes on further to say that “Usually, we would be invited to an awards ceremony for the announcement od the winners, but it was 2020 style – Champagne, pyjamas and Zoom!”
Diane said “No matter who you are, your background, culture, age or gender, when you have problems with your hair, you want a non invasive quick solution to the problem, even those who just simple want a makeover for a wedding, special occasion, work or for personal reasons”
Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extension & Hair loss Specialist Salon became finalist in three categories
a) Best Customer Experience b) Best Salon West Midlands and c) Best Hair Extensions Salon and Winners in two categories’ a) Best Hair extension Salon and b) Creative Image of the Year by Diane Shawe
They had to submit an essay, pictures, and videos, highlighting how their business was different to others in the county, to a panel of four judges.
“We are so proud to receive this award after months of uncertainty. Hopefully it will be one of many!”
Diane Shawe Signature & Celebrity Hair Extension Specialist and owner of Need a Hair Makeover Hair Extensions & Hair loss Specialist Salons was launched 4 years ago to help people with Hair Challenges by disguising thin hair, damaged hair, hereditary problems or bald patches caused by chemicals, alopecia illness or medical treatment.
About Need a Hair Makeover (NAHM Specialist Salon Franchise ltd) Would you like to own your own Hair Extensions & Hair loss Business?
Then you’ll find a massive opportunity here at Need A Hair Makeover & Hair loss Franchise!
Were we will train you, Establish your Outlet, Promote you and Support your Business Enterprise under our Brand. For many people around the world, hair loss, caused by illness, medication or stress, thin or short hair that wont grow, heat or chemically damaged hair is a major problem.
The salons specialise in disguising hair challenges with a variety of non invasive hair makeover solutions for temporary, semi permanent or long term comfort. Diane said “No matter who you are, your background, culture, age or gender, when you have problems with your hair, you want a non invasive quick solution to the problem, even those who just simple want a makeover for a wedding, special occasion, work or for personal reasons”
The main aims of Need a Hair Makeover & Hair loss Specialist Franchise Salons are to deliver the highest quality, the most innovative hair extensions techniques, hair loss treatments and disguises, hair care products and services to the maximum amount of people around the globe in a convenient, consistent, affordable, and enjoyable manner in our stylish salons.
The growing demand for applying bespoke high end human hair extensions and ultra high quality heat resistant synthetic hair and wigs across European Regions have created new opportunities for a new kind of specialist salons.
I have been noticing that most of my food is going mouldy quicker, even in the jars! I was curious to find out why, espcially as this is happening more and more in the fridge as well. I thought the fridge was designed to keep things cool and slow down the detiriation of our food.
I also wanted to know what mould did to the body if injected, my mind started to generate all types of conspiracy theory so I decided to do a little research based on facts.
We all grow up learning mold is gross. But is it just unpleasant, or is it actually dangerous? Isn’t it mould that makes blue cheese blue? And wasn’t penicillin first discovered in moldy bread?
Are we wasting perfectly safe food when we throw it out? Or are we gambling our health when we shrug our shoulders and eat that piece of cheese that had a dusting of white fuzz?
How does mould grow on food?
I found this bit scary because is the air we are breathing so toxic? Is that why we are getting sicker even though we are more health concious? I mean think about it, our lungs are very moist!
So back to the question: Tiny mould spores are carried in the air. When these spores land on food, they take root and grow until they produce patches of mould visible to the naked eye. Once they mature, they produce new spores and release them into the environment and the cycle continues!
What is mold on food?
Mould is a microscopic fungus, and yes—spoilers!—consuming it can be bad for our health. Like its cousin the mushroom, there are thousands of different species.
Some are safe to consume, but many produce poisonous mycotoxins that cause illness and even death. Additionally, some people are allergic to mould and need to steer clear of it. So dealing with mold on food is serious business.
Why does mould grow on food?
Mould requires three things to grow: organic matter, water and oxygen. Food provides the the first two ingredients. Exposed to air, mold has everything it needs to grow.
How long does it take for mould to grow on food?
Many factors affect the rate of growth of mould: the specific type of mould, the food it’s growing on, and the ambient temperature and humidity. Many species of mould like warmer temperatures and mould growing on fruit on your counter may develop in very few days, especially in the warm humid summer months. Other mould growing on food with less water content in the cool of a refrigerator might take several weeks.
How to handle mould on food?
Mould can grow on most types of food, but not all food is the same.
Red Flag Food
Red flag food items should be automatically discarded when mouldy. These items include most food items, particularly soft and moist foods:
Luncheon meats, hot dogs, bacon, etc.
Cooked leftover meat, poultry and fish
Cooked pasta and cooked grains
Sour cream and yoghurt
Soft fruits such as tomatoes, berries, cucumbers, etc.
Some other drier, harder foods fall into this category as well:
Nuts and legumes
Bread, baked goods and other highly porous items
In general, softer food with more moisture content is more prone to moulding, and can’t be safely salvaged. In addition to the mould itself, soft moist food can provide an ideal environment for dangerous bacteria to grow. For these foods, it’s important not to assume the problem is limited to the mould you see.
Throw away the mouldy food, and carefully inspect other nearby food, especially food in the same package. Do not sniff mouldy food: spores might get into your respiratory system. Wrap the spoiled items in plastic to contain the spores, and discard.
To eat or not to eat?
Moulds can grow in the fridge and will even survive freezing. They can also survive in salty, sugary and acidic environments. This is scary!
As mould on our food is so hard to avoid, here are some general guidelines from the most Food Safety and Inspection Service on responding to the problem:
Discard all of these foods if mouldy:
Luncheon meat, bacon, and hot dogs.
Yoghurt, sour cream and soft cheese.
Soft fruits and vegetables
Bread and baked goods.
Peanut butter, nuts and legumes.
Jams and jellies – but note Dr Hocking has a slightly different view for Australian jams.
These foods can be saved from mould:
Hard salami (the dry, aged type) – scrub mould from the surface.
Hard cheese – cut off at least 2.5 centimetres around and below the mould. Don’t let the knife touch the mould and recover the cheese with fresh wrap.
Firm fruit and veg – small mould spots can be cut off.
Cheeses made with mould
The mould used in making these cheeses is safe for consumption. However, if other mold that is not part of the manufacturing process is present, these items should be discarded just like any other red flag food item. Some blue cheeses may be hard enough to be treated as a Yellow Flag item (see below for care). However, if you are unsure where to draw the line, remember: when in doubt, throw it out.
Note that while the mould that forms the blue veins inside blue cheeses is harmless when deprived of oxygen inside the cheese, the same strain of mold can form harmful mycotoxins if allowed to grow on surfaces exposed to air. Be careful of cross-contamination with these cheeses and keep them wrapped in cellophane while storing them.
Yellow Flag Food
Other foods, particularly harder and drier foods, can sometimes be kept once the mold is carefully removed. These include:
Firm fruits and vegetables (cabbage, carrots, bell pepers, etc.)
Hard salami and dry-cured ham
If you’re going to cut away mould rather than discard the item, it’s important to remember that there is more mould present than what you can see. Below the surface, mould will have penetrated up to 2cm or more. For these food items, mould can be cut away but you should cut at least 2.5cm (1 inch) outside of and underneath any visible surface mould. Be careful to keep the knife clear of the mould to avoid contaminating the rest of the food as you cut.
Note that surface mould is a normal occurrence on certain hard salamis. In this case, scrubbing the mould off the surface is sufficient. Again, it never hurts to be cautious. When in doubt, throw it out.
Different types of food mould
Black mold on food
I did not like this bit, but if you are going to understand something, you can’t disguard the ugly sides. Well here goes.. Various strains of mould can have a black appearance. Homeowners know to watch out for black toxic mold, Stachybotrys chartarum, commonly found in attics.
However there are many non-toxic strains of black mould as well, including Rhizopus stolonifera, also known as black bread mould. You may encounter black mould on the rubber seals of your refrigerator or on food. While this doesn’t prove you have black toxic mould in your house, you are best to assume it may be harmful and discard the food item in question, meticulously scrub clean the refrigerator, and look for signs of black mould in your house.
Pink mould on food
Pink mouldy formations on food may not be mould at all, but rather bacteria growing. Aureobasidium and Fusarium are also two common fungi that grow with a pinkish colour.
Pink mould is most often seen on bread, dairy products and meat. Dangers of pink mold include infection of the respiratory, gastro-intestinal or urinary tracts.
White mould on food
White mould is seen on a variety of foods, from the white mould purposefully grown on the outside of certain cheeses, to fluffy white mold appearing on berries and other fruit.
Many strains of mould can appear white, and to complicate matters many coloured strains of mould may go through a phase where they appear white before developing the spores that give them their colour. Unless white mould is a purposeful part of a food’s production (e.g. brie and camembert cheese), assume it is toxic and handle affected food accordingly.
Green mould on food
Green mould is commonly found on citrus fruit and bread. Cladosporium is one particularly common species of green mould.
It can have a potent smell and be particularly irritating, particularly for people with mould allergies. This can lead to respiratory problems such as wheezing and coughing, as well as vomiting. Clodosporium mold can produce mycotoxins as well, so avoid exposure.
Orange mould on food
A variety of mould can take on an orange colour, including Fuligo septica and Aleuria aurantia. These orange moulds commonly have a slimy texture.
While they may be less dangerous than some other colours of mould, they can still cause respiratory problems, and where orange mould is present, bacteria are also likely to be found.
Furthermore, orange mould is particularly prone to growing on wood. So not only is orange mould a threat to your food, it is a threat to the wood in your house.
Red mould on food
While various strains of mould can be red, red mould on food is most commonly Neurospora. While this type of mould is typically less dangerous than other types of mould, some mycotoxin-producing moulds might appear red in certain conditions, or might be present alongside red mould. It’s therefore wisest to treat red mould on food with the same caution as other mould.
Blue mould on food
Blue mould on bread and the blue mould deliberately cultivated to make blue cheese are strains of the genus Penicillium. And yes, some species of Penicillium (but not all!) produce penicillin. Many species of Penicillium are innocuous, but some are not.
And while the blue mould in blue cheese, deprived of oxygen, is safe for consumption, that same strain of mould can produce mycotoxins when it grows on an outside surface exposed to air. So, eat that blue cheese but treat other blue mould as potentially toxic.
Consumers Select Food Based on Colour at the Supermarket
It is widely accepted that consumers select a food product with their eyes, so products need to look fresh and tasty.
Oxidation is the Enemy
Oxidation, a chain reaction that occurs in the presence of oxygen, is responsible for the deterioration of food products, including off-flavours and off-odours. This process is affected by processing, packaging and storing techniques, as well as product ingredients.
What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are molecules that:
Significantly delay or prevent oxidation
Help maintain fresh appearance and colour
Extend shelf life
How Do They Work?
Antioxidants delay the onset of oxidation by donating hydrogen atoms to quench free radicals, forming a stable antioxidant radical that is unable to participate in propagation reactions, slowing down oxidation.
What happens if you eat mould?
Is it dangerous to inhale mould spores from food?
Inhaling mould visible on food is risky and should be avoided. It may cause allergic reactions or problems with the respiratory tract. When mould isn’t visible, sniffing may be a useful way to detect it—e.g. smelling dishcloths. However, once you’ve spotted mould, avoid inhaling.
Can mould on food make you sick?
Mould on food can be harmful in various ways. Some people are allergic to mould and could have a potentially serious reaction. However, even if you don’t have allergies, mould can cause irritation in the respiratory, gastro-intestinal or urinary tracts. And the mycotoxins created by some moulds are poisonous carcinogens that can prove fatal.
What are health symptoms you can get by eating mould on food?
Allergic reactions to mould can include sneezing, runny or stuffy nose, coughing, postnasal drip, irritated eyes, nose and throat and dry, scaly skin. Those with asthma may experience coughing, wheezing, shortness of breath and tightness in the chest.
Those without allergies may still experience respiratory problems such as wheezing, sneezing, tightness in the chest and difficulty breathing. In more severe cases, this can lead to respiratory infection and even hypersensitivity pneumonitis.
A particular concern is ingesting mould that produces mycotoxins. Signs of mycotoxin poisoning include reduced appetite, a general feeling of malaise, acute illness or death in rare cases.
Food mould facts and questions
Which food will mould fastest?
Storage conditions will have a significant effect on how quickly a given food turns mouldy. However, all things being equal, food with a high moisture content will mould first. Thus, in the fridge, fruits such as strawberries or cucumber might get mouldy before other foods. Stored at room temperature, natural bread (with no preservatives) can get mouldy quite quickly.
Is it safe to eat fruits with mould on a peel you discard?
It may be tempting to think that for fruit with a peel, simply removing and discarding the peel may be enough to protect you. In the case of a firm fruit like a pineapple, it can indeed be treated as a “yellow flag” food, carefully cutting away the affected area.
Fruits with a softer peel like oranges or bananas should be treated as “red flag” foods and discarded—underneath the visible mould, it may have penetrated the peel to the flesh of the fruit inside. In the case of an avocado, while the skin is quite tough mold can still get underneath and infect the fruit inside. Play it safe and discard it.
What temperature kills mould spores in food?
Most moulds are killed off by temperatures of 60-70°C (140-160°F). Thus, boiling water is generally enough to kill off mould. Remember, though, that mould doesn’t just grow on the surface: heat will have to penetrate into whatever the mould is growing in to kill it. Also keep in mind that the mycotoxins produced by certain mould can survive intense heat: boiling may kill the mould but leave its poisons still intact.
It takes one mouldy food item to get the whole basket covered in mold! This is very important rule to remember the moment you are at the market. If you are buying nonpacked items, ensure each of them is fresh. If you notice mold on any single piece, simply don’t buy it. Examine each item for bruising, softness, oxidation or signs of mould before you buy it and avoid any items that look overly ripe.
On the other hand, when buying pre-packed food you cannot examine every single piece, meaning that mouldy items can go unseen. In that case, ensure you checked the date and chose the one that was most recently packed. Instead of buying processed or pre-packed food, where you often don’t have control of the freshness (the story of wrong dates is not rarely heard), choose local markets and stores you can trust.
Once you buy your delicious food, especially fresh fruit and veggies, it is important to keep it covered until you’re ready to eat it to minimize the risk of cross-contamination with bacteria, mold, dust and debris from the environment. Use plastic wrap to cover foods you want to keep for longest, such as fresh fruits, vegetables, salads and cheese.
Rinse the contents of canned goods under water and store them in your fridge in tightly sealed plastic or glass containers. Refrigerate leftovers and use them within four days.
Consume early to avoid mold. The first step you can take to prevent food going bad is to eat it before mould has time to take hold. Especially for moisture-rich and porous food like fruits and breads, buy in smaller quantities so you can consume it within a just a few days.
Keep food cold: the cooler the better. Keep food, especially soft moist food like fruit, in the refrigerator rather than at room temperature. Only take it out while you’re using it—under two hours. To keep food mould-free for longer periods, store it in the freezer rather than the fridge.
Use heat to kill mold. High acid foods such as fruits, jams and jellies can be made safe to preserve through heat treatment. A boiling water bath is a common practice to prepare them for a long shelf-life. The amount of time required for a water bath will vary depending on what and how much you’re canning, so be sure to adapt your method to the specific food you’re treating.
Keep kitchen tools and surfaces clean. Mould may thrive on food, but it can be found anywhere. The less mould in your kitchen, the less your food will get exposed. Clean your refrigerator and other kitchen surfaces with a mixture of 5ml of baking powder to 1L of water. Watch out for black-coloured mold on your fridge’s rubber seals and scrub carefully to clean it out.
Keep your dishcloths, tea towels, sponges, mops and other kitchen tools clean. Give them the sniff test: if they smell musty, they may be harbouring mould. Any item that you can’t get clean and fresh-smelling, discard and replace.
In order to prevent mould on food you will have to work on overall kitchen mould prevention. In most cases it includes either ensuring there is enough fresh air or regular cleaning. Here are a few tips that can help you prevent mold in the kitchen.
As said above – mould can grow in the fridge and, thus, it is important to keep the inside of the refrigerator clean. We suggest cleaning it every few months with one tablespoon of baking soda dissolved in a quart of water. Rinse with clean water and dry thoroughly before storing food again.
Ensure your food is still fresh by checking it every day or two. Toss away anything that has a sign of mould or that started rotting away.
Wash the dishes at least once a day. Don’t leave food leftovers in your sink behind you once you are done with the meal. Throw them away immediately. If you are in a rush, keep your dishes under water to prevent food stains from hardening until you can wash them properly.
Mould can be found in dishwasher and garbage disposals. It can be the reason behind the odors, thus keeping it clean should be your priority. At least once a week pour baking soda, salt and vinegar (or lemon) own the sink and leave it for 10 minutes. You can add lemon or orange peels and even essential oils to give it a nice smell. After that all you have to do is pour boiled water to wash it up and your disposal and sink will be clean, mould-free and refreshed.
Kitchen tools, especially wooden ones should be washed and well dried before set aside, because wood is one of the favourite food for mould. All you have to do is simply wash them after you used them and leave them to dry well somewhere where it is not wet and it has enough fresh air and light. (for example if you are done with cooking and your stove is still warm, you can put it next to it to dry.
Don’t forget about unused kitchen appliances. They are often sealed and if not well dried, mould can form due to water evaporation inside. The best way to prevent mold from developing inside is to ensure it is well dried before storing and, if there is a possibility, keep it open.
And last but not least, make sure that the relative humidity in your home is between 30% and 50%, especially in the warmer months, when mold is known to flourish. The easiest thing you can do to control the humidity level is to keep your windows open as often as possible. If that is not possible your next steps should bes either air vents or even a dehumidifier.
As with mould in general, there are many strains of mould that can be found on food. While some are innocuous, many are not. While mould that’s purposefully introduced into certain cheeses can be safe, always treat other mould on food as a dangerous substance. Treat “yellow flag” foods with caution and for “red flag” foods, play it safe and discard it.
And remember, the same concerns about mould allergies and mould toxicity that applies to food mould also applies to other mould in your house. Keep watch for mould in your kitchen and whole house, and if you detect signs of mould, get informed as to the steps needed to eradicate it safely.
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