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Tinder has taken new steps to protect it's LGBTQ+ users from prejudice abroad with a feature designed for safe travel.

Despite the fact that more countries are making vital strides towards equality worldwide for the LGBTQ+ community, there are still 70 countries that persecute individuals for sexual orientation and gender identity.

The International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, and Intersex Association (ILGA) has said that there are 69 UN member states where same-sex sexual activity is criminalised.

Thankfully, Tinder is putting this prejudice at the forefront of people's minds by taking steps to ensure the safety of its LGBTQ+ users when travelling.

The dating app announced that LGBTQ+ users will receive an alert when entering a country which has discriminatory laws.

Tinder refers to the feature as 'Traveller Alert' in a new blog post explaining their latest technological advance.

“It’s no secret that we believe everyone has the right to live how they want to live and love who they want to love.

"And while there are still efforts to protect our freedoms from LGBTQ+ discrimination, it’s important to remember that there are still nearly 70 countries around the world that have laws effectively criminalising LGBTQ+ status."

A notification will appear warning users of the sexual orientation laws in their current location and the risks they may face for expressing their orientation openly. 

“Starting today, we’re rolling out a Traveller Alert that will appear when Tinder is opened in one of these locations to ensure that our users are aware of the potential dangers the LGBTQ community faces – so that they can take extra caution and do not unknowingly place themselves in danger for simply being themselves,” the post adds.

LGBTQ+ users can then choose whether to leave their Tinder profile public or not in a nation which is volatile towards gay people.

Their sexual orientation or gender identity won’t be public information until they’ve left the country.

“Based on your geographical area, it appears you’re in a place where the LGBTQ+ community may be penalised,” Tinder’s traveller alert reads.

“We want you to have fun, but your safety is our number one priority. Please proceed with caution and take extra care when making new matches and meeting with people you do not know.”

While this marks a temporary limitation on meeting potential matches, the alert is grounded in a real threat of persecution from law enforcement agency workers going undercover on the app, laws criminalising same-sex activity and other Tinder users hostile to the LGBTQ+ community.

ILGA provided Tinder with data to create their update, and released a statement on the new feature.

“We work hard to change practices, laws and attitudes that put LGBTQ+ people at risk – including the use of dating apps to target our community – but in the meantime, the safety of our communities also depends on supporting their digital safety,” explained André du Plessis.

Homophobia is still an epidemic in society, despite progress occurring with equal marriage and representation.

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Women's Aid have launched a new guide on safety orders for young women who are experiencing abuse in their relationships, due to new laws being introduced.

The legislation brought in at the beginning of this year allows women who are going through dating abuse to apply for Safety and Protection orders.

Women's Aid are instigating the guide on Valentine's Day as part of the #TooIntoYou campaign to emphasise the darker side of love.

RTÉ's Can't Stop Dancing presenter Bláthnaid Treacy is also urging young women and men to "know the signs of dating abuse", especially because 60 percent of abuse in relationships begins before the age of 25.

Women's Aid are a national organisation which provides vital information and support to women experiencing dating abuse and domestic violence. Their #TooIntoYou campaign aims to spread much-needed awareness on the topic.

#TooIntoYou uses social media and poster advertising to strive for the spread of information from February 14 until March 8 (International Women's Day).

New laws brought in at the start of 2019 under the Domestic Violence Act 2018 allow women to apply for important Safety and Protection laws.

However, the organisation believes that many young women are still in the dark about the change and how to get the necessary protection, which is why Women's Aid ae bringing in the 'Guide to Safety Orders in Dating Relationships' online today.

Spotting the 10 key danger signs of dating abuse and providing information to combat online stalking and digital abuse is of imperative importance for women in Ireland today.

Margaret Martin, Director of Women’s Aid says:

"1 in 5 women in Ireland experience abuse in relationships and in a national survey on domestic abuse in Ireland, almost 60 percent of those who had experienced severe abuse in intimate relationships first experienced it when they were under the age of 25."

"A stark reminder of this risk is that 1 in every 2 women, aged between 18-25, killed in Ireland since 1996 were murdered by their boyfriends or exes," Martin concluded.

The campaign is being launched on Valentine's Day to highlight the hidden reality of many young women's relationships, despite the fact that today is traditionally associated with love and romance.

Martin's goal for today, is to ask the hard questions; "We are clearly asking – what part of love is abuse?" She spoke directly to victims and survivors; “You are not alone in feeling something isn't right with your relationship."

Visit the #TooIntoYou website here for more information, or call the Women's Aid 24hr National Freephone Helpline at 1800 341 900.

Feature image: Instagram'/@womens.aid

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It's nearly that time of year again (sob). 

The nights are becoming darker and the weather is getting colder – and with that comes a long list of unwanted beauty problems. 

As the cold weather sets in, your skin will feel dry, flaky and chapped; and let's be honest, we really don't have time to deal with that. 

But there are many practical ways to protect your skin during the colder months, and they're actually pretty easy to get used to. 

Cover your skin from head to toe

Of course it's your natural instinct to bundle up when the cold weather hits, but be smart about your choices. Don't just throw on layers; wear gloves on your hands, a scarf around your neck, and protect any part of your chest that isn't covered by your coat. 

 

Don't wash your hair every day

When you shampoo your hair, it actually strips your hair of natural oils. If you do this too often, along with harsh weather setting in, your hair will turn very dry and brittle. Try to go every second or third day instead to keep your hair in top-tip shape. 

 

Provide more moisture

The moisture from your skin evaporates quickly in the cold and wind of winter months, and your skin produces less oil as well. To combat this problem, use a thicker moisturiser on your skin. But make sure it suits your skin type as you really don't want a break-out. 

 

Use hand lotion

You use your hands for every task, every day – yet it's so easy to forget to take care of them. Use a specialised hand cream every morning and evening to help prevent them becoming sore and chapped. 

 

Stay hydrated

You might want to sip hot chocolate during the colder months but it is really important to stay hydrated by drinking water every day. Not only will it help your body stay hydrated, it will help your skin too. This combined with your new moisturising routine, you won't even know it's winter outside!

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Editorial_Leader

It’s here… it’s REALLY here!

Yes, after what is being described as the most miserable May the country has ever seen (radiators at full blast; scarves and winter coats given regular outings) it appears that the sun has decided to grace our fair land with its presence.

Cue a steady stream of ice-cream, shorts-and-t-shirts – oh, and sun-burn.

And not only does red and raw skin look (gonna be blunt here) not very attractive at all, but harsh rays can furthermore be seriously damaging and ageing.

In short, sunscreen is an absolute must at this time of year – even when you’re on home-soil.

Still, Irish weather requires an Irish-appropriate product: enter P20 sunscreen – THE sunscreen for extreme weather conditions

We know that those who are frequently exposed to UV rays before the age of 25, as well as people who get sunburnt as a child or teenager, are at a much greater risk of developing skin cancer in later life.

In fact, their risk is almost doubled – and that means slathering on a higher SPF; think P20 sunscreen SPF 50.

And why do we love P20 in particular? Its unique formula is non-greasy (hurrah!) and fragrance free (hear, hear!).

Better still, it provides great coverage, even in water, for up to ten hours, meaning it only needs to be applied once-a-day.

The P20 range consists of SPF15, SPF20, SPF30 and SPF50+ and is suitable for those with very delicate and sensitive skin.

With prices ranging from €19.99-€34.99, P20 is available from pharmacies nationwide. 

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Spirulina is a natural algae powder that is incredibly high in protein and nutrients. When taken on a regular basis, it has many benefits that will help you feel and look beautiful.

Antioxidant
It is a powerful antioxidant that helps people lose weight easily.

Protection
It helps fight against cancer and viral illnesses.

Immunity
It improves a person’s immune system.

Libido
It has been proven to increase a person’s libido level.

Amino acids
It has high levels of amino acids which help prevent different heart diseases.

Anti-aging
It contains many anti-aging properties that will helps prolong the skin aging.

If you want to get the total health benefits of spirulina, then it’s best if you buy the organic kind. Just add a spoonful into your smoothies and watch your body transform!

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