Category - Health and Beauty

Taking care of your health and beauty is even more important when on holiday. Discover insider tips on maintaining your holiday healthy and beauty, from the best sun creams on the market to the best cure for mosquito bites – Purple Travel

Facepalm: World’s Worst Sunburn
Get ready for the beach with our bikini diet tips.
Running around the world: the top marathons around the world
Calorie burning holiday activities
Airline Food Nutritional Values Exposed
New Years Detox Holidays
Holiday vitamins and supplements
The Bikini Files Part 4: How to get rid of Cellulite
The Bikini Files Part 5: Bikini for Body Shapes
The Bikini Files Part 3: How to Beat Razor Burn

Get ready for the beach with our bikini diet tips.

Blog post picture

Ladies! Winter is nearly done (we hope!) for good and spring is tiptoing slowly, ensuring you’re lusting after golden beaches, aqua parks and holidays in the sunshine.  It’s also the time when tights are banished to the back of the wardrobe, miniskirts are taken out and oh yes, bikini time.

With the summer fast approaching and the images of powder white beaches , celebs looking amazing in tiny two pieces and the lure of sunshine, it’s a good time to think about getting in shape now. So, your friends at Purple Travel k decided to give you some tips on how to get ready for summer with our bikini diet tips.

What to eat

Vegetables - Chock full of nutrients, vegetables have always been supporters of our health and shape; therefore stock up and feel the weight drop off.

Leafy greens: For a meal without calories opt for a hearty salad which will certainly satisfy your hunger and won’t leave you with a bulging stomach.

Red Bell Peppers: this valuable food stimulates the digestive system and boosts your metabolism.

Peppermint: to feel as light as a feather have some peppermint leaves that reduce bloating and indigestion.

Fruits – Apart from their nutrient and vitamin value, mother nature’s best natural products not only benefits our body, but also helps our minds. Apples, oranges, berries,  make us feel happier, thanks to their healthy content and utter deliciousness! Prepare a simple fruit salad with pineapple, berries and apples and say goodbye to annoying cellulite.

Fish – Forget the fatty sausages or bland chicken and go for fish! Have a low-calorie salmon meal which will supply your body with good omega 3 saturated fats.

Greek Yoghurt – The best solution for your daily calcium intake, it has zero fat and can be easily eaten plain or mixed with some fruits, or added to sauces, or savoury dishes.

Raw nuts – Nutritious, quick snacks with healthy fats, fibre  plant sterols and many vitamins and minerals, raw nuts pack a powerful nutritional punch, all wrapped up in a tiny bite-sized package.

Exercise tips

For workaholics, the really busy ones or gym haters here are some exercise tips to help you either improve or keep in shape.

Tip 1: Give up email! If you want to share something with a colleague just walk to their office and have a chat. Every step counts – but you can always get a nice chat out of it too.

Tip 2: Improve your posture while sitting on your office chair, sit up straight and contract your tummy – this counts as an abs excercise even if you don’t feel it.

Tip 3: Avoid lifts. Try using the the stairs for some calorie burning, even if it’s just one or two floors worth. If you get public transport, get off the bus or tube one stop early and walk the extra few minutes home or to the office.

Tip 4: No need to drop yourself on the couch while watching your favourite series. Do some free weightlifting (even with two tins of beans!) or some gentle hip exercises to make your pastime a useful one.

Running around the world: the top marathons around the world

New York City MarathonImage of the New York City Marathon via @ Saucy Salad

City running: The New York City run is one of the top marathons around the world, with plenty of space for spectators. Around two million people throng the city streets each year just to cheer on their favourites. Entries are by lottery, so get your application in by April for your chance to run through all five boroughs. (November 10, 2013.)

Ice, Ice, Baby: The Antarctic Ice Marathon is one for the hardcore. Running on ice with temperatures dropping below 0, it’s certainly one for the absolutely committed… and a little crazy! (November 20, 2013.)

Desert Running: From one extreme to another, how about a six stage trek through the Sahara in Morocco. Temperatures can top 100 degrees, sandstorms can temporarily blind you and there are no shops to stop and pick up a handy bottle of water, all your supplies go on your back. (March 17, 2013)

Safari Marathon: A double loop around Kenya’s Lewa Wildlife Conservancy will take you past zebras, giraffes and plenty of other wildlife. Try not to worry too much about lions and tigers – rangers and helicopters are on hand to rescue any runners that might come a cropper. (June 22, 2013.)

Great Wall adventure: How often will you get to walk on the Great Wall of China, let alone race along it? You’ll certainly feel like you’ve completed a workout over the gruelling but picturesque 5164 steps and paths. (May 18, 2013.)

The classic: The Athens City Marathon is the stuff of legend, literally. The home of the first ever marathon, it follows the route of a messenger who was delivering the news of Greece’s victory in the Battle of Marathon. It’s told he made his winning cry before collapsing on arrival in Athens. Today, the epic run finishes in the historic Olympic Stadium in the centre of the city. (November 10, 2013.)

Rookie runners: The Walt Disney World Half Marathon weekend is a good place to start for beginner runners. You can take the kids for an adventure of a lifetime and get a family run in at the same time. (February 22-24, 2013)

Rural running: The Connemarathon in Ireland will take you over mountains, glacier lakes, bogs and rolling hills and countryside of the West Coast. A great way to discover the Emerald Isle running a marathon with a difference. (April 7, 2013.)

Visit Purple Travel now to find out more about holidays with a difference.

Calorie burning holiday activities

Rather than letting yourself go on holiday, keep your New Year’s resolutions in mind and join in these activities that will burn calories without you even having to try. Sand, sea and warm weather provide an excellent environment for keeping fit, proving as effective as slaving away in the gym all day (and without the discomfort and monotony). Here we reveal just how many calories you can burn in ten minutes on the beach without even realising.

Is this you most recent holiday snap? Then you need the tips below...

Does this look more like your recent holiday snap? Then you need the tips below…

Swimming in the sea

Sea swimming is one of the best all-round exercises there is as it uses all of the major muscle groups simultaneously. What’s more, sea swimmers will build up their strength, stamina and flexibility, creating long, lean muscles and a slim and toned overall look. Sea swimming also tones up your legs, arms and torso much quicker than pool swimming due to the resistance of the waves and the fact that swimmers generally spend longer in the sea as there is no end point.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 79 calories

Walking on the beach

Walking along the beach, even gently, can afford a surprisingly energetic workout, using between 20 and 50 per cent more calories than the same walk on a flat surface. Try walking at a distance further away from the waterfront as the softer the sand, the greater the resistance and therefore the harder the workout.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 79 calories

Playing Frisbee on the sand

While only a moderate aerobic activity when played on a flat surface, playing Frisbee on the beach works both your lower and upper body quite vigorously. You will unknowingly workout your biceps, shoulders and tummy muscles, with added resistance from the sand.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 66 calories

Running in the waves

Kicking your way through the waves offers a highly cardiovascular workout with all the benefits of resistance training. Water is almost 15 times more resistant than air, meaning you can burn nearly 20 calories per minute – ­twice as much as running on a dry surface.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 200 calories

Playing racquets

Bat and ball games as well as being fun, are actually quite an intense workout. You can work your torso, upper arm and shoulder muscles, and, if you play on the beach, the sand will help to reduce the impact on your joints, while still improving your strength.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 72 calories

Getting stuck in to some beach volleyball

This extraordinary sport increases your aerobic capacity while also toning up your body. Playing on the sand, much like with raquets, reduces the impact on your ankles, working your triceps, shoulders, quads and calf muscles without damaging you joints.

Ten-minute calorie burn: 84 calories

New Years Detox Holidays

After a month spent knocking back mince pies and downing one too many glasses of mulled wine, January is an international period of detox. For some, this necessitates a strict diet of raw food and juices, while others just need a week away to recover mind, body and soul. Here, searches for the top ten New Year detox holidays. Attention please…


Castel Monastero, Tuscany

Castel Monastero is a stylish retreat overlooking Chianti vineyards, placed within an 11th-century settlement. Its therapeutic wellness programme was designed by Dr Mosaraf Ali, the director of the Integrated Medical Centre in London. This programme focuses on weight loss, detox and rejuvenation – perfect for beating the Christmas bulge.

Expect daily yoga, toxin-eliminating Marma massage, cellulite-busting Trattamento Lipolitico mud wraps, a personalised dietary programme by Gordon Ramsay (delicious), and profuse amounts of fasting tea (gross). Come here if you’re looking to go home with more energy, lower stress levels and ease of sleep.

Viva Mayr, Austria

Based on Franz Mayr’s research on the idea that many ailments are actually caused by poor digestion, Viva Mayr, the Centre for Modern Mayr Medicine, in southern Austria prides itself on excellence in allergy and food intolerances. Run by Harold Stossier, the centre’s programmes combine traditional and modern naturopathic therapies, each with a different focus, whether it be on allergies, stress or anti-ageing. Its beautiful lakeside setting, indoor pool and beauty parlour make for an even more luxurious stay. However, don’t be fooled, this is not a holiday; everything is geared towards achieving optimum health, cleansing the digestive system and re-education of eating habits.


Longevity Wellness Resort, Algarve

Portugal’s first anti-ageing medical spa lies within a nature reserve by the quiet spa town of Caldas de Monchique. Recently built, the modern concrete and glass structure is eco-friendly, with grass roofs and solar panels. In partnership with La Clinique de Paris, specialists in ageing management, the Resort spa offers a variety of holistic personalised wellness programmes, lasting from three days to one month. For New Year, why not try Dr Chauchard’s 15-day Fast Slimming and Detox programme, which includes full medical consultation, a diet plan and related treatments? You will stay in one of the apartment-like suites, with its own kitchenette with Smeg and Bosch appliances and living and dining areas.

Fusion Fitness, Hotel Aguas de Ibiza, Ibiza

The Fusion Fitness holiday at Aguas de Ibiza offers seven personalised one-on-one activities and treatments, focusing on cardio, strength, sport, mind and body and renewal. Whip your body into the best shape to start the New Year with in the beautiful surroundings of Ibiza.


Hotel Palace Merano, Italy

Henri Chenot’s detox programmes are like catnip for yoga bunnies. His method is called Biontology, which combines Chinese medicine with Western technology. His regular clients visit to lose weight, boost their energy levels and rejuvenate their bodies, but those at the Hotel Palace Merano  also benefit from being in the foothills of the Dolomites in northern Italy. Enjoy calorie-controlled, salt-free recipes, trips to the spa and medical centre and picturesque views.

Yeotown Radiant Health Retreat, Devon

Located within 50 acres of organic farmland in north Devon, the incredibly stylish Yeotown Radiant Health Retreat is home to a convoy of fitness, nutrition and yoga experts. Here, you have the option of reconnecting with nature in the beautiful English countryside, while enjoying the range of outdoor activities on offer. For New Year, you should try their signature programme, an intensive four to seven-day detox called the Yeotox, which involves a combination of private consultations and specialised massages, plus daily activities to boot.

the retreat

The Golden Rock Retreat, Bali

A journey towards radiant health, the Golden Rock Retreat on the eastern tip of Bali is a private resort in the most tranquil of settings. Beachfront bedrooms and tailor-made programmes will help you get away from it all. Nutrition, fasting, yoga, meditation and qigong are all included, with the aim of deep-cleansing the system and re-energising the body. Whether you opt for the four-day Elemental Cleanse, with bowel flushes, massage, reflexology and other components or the 20-day Golden Rock Retreats, you’ll leave the Retreat feeling like a new person.

Forte Village, Sardinia

The Spa Thaermae del Forte at Forte Village houses six seawater pools at varying temperatures to heal by thelassotherapy. Resident doctor, Mosaraf Ali provides clients with advice on exercise, relaxation, yoga and massage to get you back on form after the Christmas season. His impressive list of patients include Prince Charles, the Sultan of Oman, Richard Branson and Michael Douglas.

penninghame house

Penninghame House, Scotland

On the exterior, Penninghame House is a quaint family home, but further inside you will discover a modern macrobiotic health retreat. Located on a remote 19th-century estate (an hour and a half’s drive from Glasgow in Dumfries and Galloway ), the House offers various courses, including cookery lessons and dine evenings, where their chefs will demonstrate a range of dishes, with ingredients chosen for their effects on the body, mind and energy levels.

The January health week (16-22) is perfect for your New Year’s resolutions, having a specific detox focus, which will help you clear your body of toxins, fat and acidic imbalance. You will also take home the skills needed to maintain a healthy balance in the future through lectures and home remedy sessions.

SHA Wellness Clinic, Albir, Spain

Alfredo Bataller Parietti’s used macrobiotic principles to tackle and recover from a disease he had suffered since childhood. With his SHA Wellness Clinic, he fuses ancient Oriental disciplines with Western techniques to create personalised macrobiotic diet programmes that include organic, locally sourced Mediterranean and Japanese fusion cuisine. The atmosphere is further enhanced by the resort’s fresh, contemporary design and its setting within the natural beauty of the Sierra Helada National Park. The seven-night, full-board Detox Holiday (already on our Christmas lists),  includes a medical check-up at the beginning and end, clinical analysis, consultation with a personal coach, massage, colonic hydrotherapy, acupuncture, daily yoga, t’ai chi, cooking demonstrations and a personalised post-treatment health plan plus two months of follow-up coaching.

Need a detox holiday? Let us help you find the right one. Learn about the latest deals from Purple Travel.

Holiday vitamins and supplements

From time to time, we all need a little bit of help in terms of health, beauty and general well-being. During your holiday, your choice of vitamins and supplements should fit accordingly. Does your skin need extra protection? Do you find yourself allergic to foreign cuisine? Find which supplements you should take away with you by completing our quiz…

Click here to see the quiz

The Bikini Files Part 4: How to get rid of Cellulite

If you’re seeing bumps on your behind, don’t worry – you’re in good company; some 90 per cent of women have cellulite. Luckily, with this guide to how to get rid of those dreaded lumps, you’ll be beach ready in no time.

First of all, what is cellulite?

Cellulite is fat cells found underneath the top layer of the skin that have squeezed between bands of connective tissue, or collagen, attaching your muscle to your skin. Cellulite is actually composed of water, toxins and fatty tissue cells that build up under layers of skin and causes pressure on the connective tissues of muscles. This concentration of body elements causes the skin to take on an orange-peel like texture. While the structure of women’s connective tissue is vertical (like mattress springs), men’s collagen is angled, which means that fat cells don’t push through and pucker as much – the reason why virtually no men have cellulite.

What causes cellulite?

Dermatologists believe that bad circulation can intensify the appearance of lumps. “When blood flow slows, collagen separates, allowing fat to come up to the surface of the skin, creating an orange-peel effect,” says Howard Murad, MD, a FITNESS advisory board member and author of The Cellulite Solution. However, the main causes of cellulite are unhealthy diets and lack of exercise.

Cellulite builds up mostly in the stomach, hips, buttocks, thighs or on the back part of the legs – areas with deeper skin pockets that tend to retain more fat. This causes poor blood circulation to affected skin tissues, creating a dimpled, uneven surface.

Even though weight gain or obesity are often coupled with cellulite, other known factors include family genetics, hormone imbalances that usually occur during within the life cycle , and in women, high levels of Estrogen have been shown to cause cellulite formations.

How to get rid of cellulite naturally

Cellulite can be eliminated or reduced through regular exercising and a healthy diet. Regular running, aerobics, yoga, swimming or cycling can have a huge impact. Exercise sweats out excess water and toxins, reducing fat deposits in the targeted areas and toning up body muscles, while healthy eating ensures your system is flushing out waste toxins. Your nutritional diet should include dairy products and plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, which are very helpful in removing toxins and providing many beneficial vitamins and minerals. Avoid processed foods, which are rich in saturated fats and sodium such as fried foods, potato chips, cookies and especially pork meats and avoid alcohol at all costs – sorry guys!

Do creams really work?

Cellulite creams are often overrated. They are typically a short term solution if the main cause is not addressed. Many anti-cellulite creams available today contain Aminophylline, which is included in kola nuts, tea and in coffee beans. When Aminophylline is used as a topical cream it will remove excess moisture from the skin and help to minimize cellulite and other skin imperfections. The only drawback is that when water is consumed by the body it will replenish the treated areas and the skin will once again retain moisture.

The better cellulite creams contain L-Carnitine, which is naturally contained in the skin and supports the metabolism. Regular massage applications of L-Carnitine-based creams have been shown to reduce dimples and lumps in a matter of weeks. We recommend Shiseido anti-cellulite cream, available from most department stores and pharmacies.





The Bikini Files Part 5: Bikini for Body Shapes

Bikini bodyHoliday season may be coming to an end, but if you’re jetting off to catch those last rays of sun some place tropical, then you’ll want to be looking your best. The fourth part of our bikini survival guide is a guide to finding the perfect bikini for your frame. Read on for our expert tips on how to find the perfect bikini for body shapes of all types.

The secret to finding the perfect bikini for your figure is firstly to know your shape. Which one are you?

Hourglass | If your bust and hips are about the same width, but your waist is significantly smaller.
Athletic |
If you’re thin all around, with no significant difference between your hips, waist and bust, and a muscular build.
Pear |
If your hips are significantly wider than both your waist and bust.
Apple |
If your waist is significantly wider than your hips, and equal to or nearly as wide as your bust.

Next – assess the situation.

If you’re hourglass | Hour glass figures benefit from fuller busts. However, these need support on the beach, so choose underwiring and full cups as you would with underwear.
Wider straps also help with uplift and prevent unsightly marks appearing on shoulders. Alternatively, halter necks can be adjusted for great shape and support. Be sure to balance the bikini so you don’t look top heavy. Don’t mix-and-matc! Wearing different colours on the top and bottom could make your body look disproportional.

DO: Get good support from underwired and cup-sized styles. DON’T: Spill out of ill-fitting shapes.

If you’re athletic | Feminine styles flatter an athletic physique. A halterneck will minimise large shoulders, while plunge fronts, tie tops and padding give a more glamorous shape. Pick the prettiest prints you can find – floral, animal, spots, tropical etc. High-cut legs divert attention from shoulders. Swap sporty styles and boy shorts for tie sides and mini briefs.

DO: Make yourself look feminine. DON’T: Pick functional, sporty styles.

If you’re pear-shaped | As pear shapes generally feature a smaller bust, you’re lucky to be able to wear triangle tops. Less fabric shows off more bust, while gel-filled or removable foam pads add shape. Avoid attention-grabbing big pants and stick with mini briefs to ensure the focus is up top. Luckily, having a triangular body shape usually means you also have a relatively flat tummy, so don’t be afraid to show it. Use colour and pattern to balance your body out visually; busy patterns draw attention, while dark, solid colours minimize attention. Try a patterned bikini top with a black bikini bottom.Play down fuller hips by choosing a very simple bottom.

DO: Always look for bikinis sold as separates, so you can get two different sizes for your top and bottom. DON’T: Drown your assets in saggy, ill-fitting tops.

If you’re an apple | If your tummy is a problem area, minimise it with larger bottoms, tankinis  or styles with control panels.  High-rise bottoms or shorts work best. Avoid fussy designs and opt instead for large prints or bold, colourful patterns. A tankini with padded cups will balance your shape and hide the tummy.

DO: Choose high-rise bottoms and tummy control. DON’T: Let it all hang out over skimpy briefs.
Click the links for the rest of our bikini files posts: 

The Bikini Files Part 3: How to Beat Razor Burn

Unsightly. Annoying. Difficult to avoid. While you may think this is a post about Kerry Katona, we’re actually on about ingrown hairs. A common problem after waxing and shaving, these pesky, little blemishes can drive you absolutely mad. If you get the urge to irritate, pick, or squeeze them – STOP – they could become infected and turn into nasty, oozing boils. Gross, right? And definitely not the beach babe look you were aiming for. Here are are tips so you ‘ll beat razor burn and never worry again!

What causes razor burn?

Shaving. While you may shave (in particular around the bikini area) to look smooth and sleek, this is precisely what causes that ugly rash, which often looks far worse than those few strands of hairs did in the first place. Razor burn occurs primarily because most women shave improperly, which irritates their skin, taking off the outer layer of skin and literally injuring the skin tissues.

The body then responds to this as it does with any wound – it sends blood to the wounded area in order to heal it. The blood vessels dilate, the skin develops a rash, and hey presto, you have razor burn.

What can I do to prevent bikini line razor burn?

  • Firstly, stop shaving. Allow your bikini hair to grow for around two weeks, then get yourself a bikini wax at a professional salon.
  • If you can’t brave a wax, hair creams can work just as well and they cause less trauma to the hair follicles.
  • If you absolutely must shave, trim the hair first so that the razor isn’t ripping out longer strands – hair should be no longer than ¼ inch.
  • Moisterise the area immediately after shaving with an unscented moisturizing lotion. This will reduce itching and dryness.
  • Shave after you bathe, not before or during as your skin must be supremely hydrated before you go at it with a razor.
  • DO NOT USE SOAP. Only use shaving cream, or if you have none left, hair conditioner. The best options contain aloe or other soothing ingredients.
  • Shave down, not up. This way you are less likely to irritate your hair follicles.
  • Reduce intense redness immediately by applying hydrocortisone cream, which works instantly.
  • Treat your skin with benzoyl peroxide, a common acne medication, which will minimize bumps and lumps.

What can I do to get rid of ingrown hairs?

Bikini blemishes are more commonly known as ingrown hairs. These small, irritated bumps develop when strands of hair curl and grow back into the skin after shaving. Thankfully, there is an answer for how to get rid of razor bumps. Treatment includes gently lifting out the ingrown hairs with a tweezer and applying exfoliating and soothing lotions to the area.





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