Weekend Read 17 July 2021

Weekend Read 17 July 2021

Rolling on. And as I welcome you to another Weekend Read I would like to open once again by thanking you for your loyalty and support, but primarily for allowing us to have discussions and debates about the things that matter most to each of us.  And as I see it as of this moment, it has to be about responsibility, accountability and respect in all that we do together so that we may try to balance the equilibrium of our health, wellbeing and emotions in an increasingly divisive world.

I think one very important factor is that, as a collective, we are able to seek strength in each other, and I will continue to be totally transparent on this issue because I know so many of your stories and you know mine.  In that respect, I will be updating you, as promised, with the ongoing work we are doing with the Cabinet Office later in this newsletter.  It is of vital importance to each and every one of us that these cross-party initiatives are shared, whether you are a small business, or otherwise.  Because ultimately, in many respects, it affects all of us.  And that’s what really matters.  In the end.

So let’s leave that there for the moment as I update you on products, not least the Ashwagandha Gummies, which went out of stock within approximately two hours of releasing the last Weekend Read.  I had a feeling that would happen, but I promise you we had cleared all the UK stock at that given time, but of course it wasn’t enough. Having been told that there would be no further stock until at least August, I entered meltdown territory, which I know only too well unfortunately.  But then a miracle occurred.  By some twist of fate a huge consignment arrived six weeks ahead of schedule.  And another wait list was averted.

For the full lowdown on the Ashwagandha Gummies, please refer to my words of last week.  And it remains to be seen whether the Ashwagandha Gummies will outsell the Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies in the long-term.  I think they might because the Mixed Berry flavour is rather addictive, but more than that they are loaded with the clinically proven KSM-66 Ashwagandha which has been proven to help reduce stress and tension as well as helping to promote memory and concentration.  They may also help improve sleep quality and sexual function given time.  
Ashwagandha Gummies by Goli Nutrition £18.95 for 60 Gummies; Apple Cider Vinegar Gummies by Goli Nutrition £18.95 for 60 Gummies

Onwards we go and I announced last week that Shabir had put in a whacking order for Derma E’s Crepey Skin Repair Treatment because although we had received an order a month ahead of time, in yet another unexpected twist of fate, we still needed more.  And that more has now arrived, which is cause for celebration, I feel.  So in a very limited offer, and trust me it is limited, with every Crepey Skin Repair Treatment ordered, we will automatically include Derma E’s Micellar Wipes as a gift, which should be used by the end of August.  There is only one gift per customer and if the Micellar Wipes don’t land in your basket, it means there are none left.  And it’s over.
Crepey Skin Repair Treatment by Derma E £20 for 180 grams

What definitely isn’t over is the continuing need to update you on raw ingredient shortages, which remains an ongoing concern across all products, health and beauty.  On supplementation, many bestselling products from varying brands remain out of stock and in many instances we are only receiving a fraction of an order placed.  We will continue to offer alternatives where there are long-term manufacturing issues, but there is little clarity across so many products.  I don’t really know what normal is anymore, but I am not expecting any of these issues to be resolved any time soon.  And I think it is only correct to help manage expectations.  So that’s what I’ve just done.

So please bear with us as we wade our way through unchartered territory, but what certainly isn’t unchartered is the need to continue sharing wherever we can.  And with that said, let’s talk about Skin Restoring Ceramides.  Actually Shabir is going to talk about why ceramides are essential for healthy skin, but in a nutshell I will just say that in our youth the outer layers of skin are replaced approximately every forty days.  But by the time we reach our fifties, it takes approximately 50% longer for these outer layers to be replaced.  These outer layers of skin are held together by a flexible skin cement, nearly 40% of which is composed of ceramides and other lipids.

As a consequence, our weakened skin barrier may result in the loss of moisture and it can also affect the deeper layers of skin where collagen and elastin production occur.  As Shabir states, the obvious solution is to replace the lost ceramides, which Skin Restoring Ceramides does rather well.  So if you don’t mind, I don’t want any of my ceramides lost and no matter what topical skincare you use, we still believe it is essential to take the inside-out approach to healthy skin as I take the price of Skin Restoring Ceramides down from £25 to £22 across the weekend.  A note of caution, do not take Skin Restoring Ceramides if you have a wheat allergy.  Keeping you safe.
VH Editorial: Beauty Supplements To Boost Your Skin; Skin Restoring Ceramides by Life Extension £22 for 30 Liquid Capsules (this offer will end at midnight BST tomorrow, Sunday 18 July)

I now want to write about a couple of health concerns and I will begin with magnesium.  I mentioned magnesium last week, but magnesium has numerous well-documented health benefits, so last week it was all about our bones and this week I want to throw the focus on magnesium for stress headaches and migraines.  Of course it is a huge subject, compounded by the current uncertainties of life.  Not for one moment am I going to tell you that any supplement will magically alleviate all stress headaches and migraines, but if we can lessen their occurrence and impact, then I think it could be an important battle to fight.  And hope to win.

With that said, we have found that many people respond very favourably to magnesium supplementation as it is key for relaxing muscles and nerves.  Yet not all magnesium supplementation is equal, so it is of vital importance that the correct form is chosen.  Shabir always recommends Neuro-Mag for stress headaches and migraines, not least because it contains a patented form of magnesium which has been shown to be taken up by the spinal cord and hence into the nerves in the brain where magnesium is required to relax the muscles.  Actually, Neuro-Mag does far more than that, as it also helps support cognitive function in a rather efficacious way.

So with an article from Shabir linked below, I am doing two things here.  The first is that I am taking the price of Neuro-Mag down from £32 to £29, whilst stock lasts, and the second is that with every Neuro-Mag sold across the weekend, I will throw in a sample pack of Ross J Barr’s Calm Patches.  This contains two Calm Patches for you to try, if you haven’t already tried them.  I suggest you either put them on your temples, or behind your ears if you prefer.  So here we are again, a supplement and a topical, albeit a very targeted topical.  For peace of mind.
VH Editorial: Preventing And Treating Stress Headaches; Neuro-Mag by Life Extension £29 for 90 Capsules (this offer will end at midnight BST tomorrow, Sunday 18 July); Calm Patches by Ross J. Barr £15 for Ten Patches

The second health concern I want to write about is bloating, period bloating to be precise.  Bloating usually occurs at the premenstrual stage as a symptom of Premenstrual Syndrome and although in most cases it is not a serious concern, it is definitely an annoying one.  During a menstrual cycle there is major fluctuation between the female sex hormone, oestrogen, and progesterone and the difference in the levels of the two hormones can cause different symptoms in different women, before and during a period.  And as Shabir states, women can actually gain pounds of water due to the ability of oestrogen to cause fluid retention.

More often than not, by the third day of a period, the water retention begins to diminish, but whilst we obviously can’t control our natural hormones to any great extent, we can limit the other factors that contribute to abdominal bloating, and as such we recommend Dandelion Tincture.  As a potent diuretic, Dandelion increases urine flow, rids the body of excess water and helps to relieve feelings of bloating.  Dandelion will also help diminish the minerals that are lost through its diuretic action, unlike many synthetic diuretics, which we do not recommend using.  And the humble Dandelion is also a natural source of inulin, which acts as a prebiotic for digestive health.  What a star.
VH Editorial: Do You Suffer From Period Bloating; Dandelion Tincture by A Vogel £10.85 for 50 ml

Let’s do beauty.  Garden of Wisdom, actually and with that a demonstration that we will always listen to you and act upon it wherever we can.  And in this instance I want to talk about Azelaic Acid.  When we originally launched Azelaic Acid 10% Serum, we did so knowing that it had a slightly grainy texture, which is somewhat indicative of the ingredient.  We will always seek to improve our products wherever we can, which is precisely what we did by using a water-soluble derivative of Azelaic Acid, Potassium Azeloyl Diglycinate (PAD).  It has a very smooth texture and it has super-hydrating properties.  That’s the first part of the story.

The second part of the story is that we were then inundated with emails from those who preferred the original grainy formulation, so we’ve brought it back.  That does of course mean that we now have two different Azelaic Acids to choose from, although having said I am not sure if we will keep both of them as Shabir may well decide that we are only bringing back the original formulation as a limited edition.  The decision will have absolutely nothing to do with me, or Shabir actually, but it will be subject to demand.  If there is any.  Telling it as it is.  Because there is no other way.
Azelaic Acid 10% Serum (original) £10 for 30 ml; Azelaic Acid (PAD) £14 for 30 ml

Well, we may as well stay on subject because I have a Garden of Wisdom treat for you.  If you don’t mind I think I will give up writing that Shabir has formulated all the GoW for VH products because you all know that.  What you possibly don’t know is that he formulated certain serums for himself because he is acutely concerned that his skin must always be better than mine.  I swear to you I haven’t made that up, we have been having skincare challenges for more than twenty years, but the floor belongs to him right now as, at his request, he asked for an overfill of his Anti-Aging MultiPeptide Serum, which means you will receive 45 ml of the serum instead of 30 ml for the same price whilst stock lasts.  I’ll wait for my moment.  And I’ll make sure it’s a good one.
Anti-Aging MultiPeptide Serum by Garden of Wisdom for VH £20 for 45 ml

Back to health we go and we are going to do Double Cleansing The Body.  And I have chosen to do it now because there has been a global shortage of Milk Thistle, but it is back in stock at the moment, having gone in and out of stock for most of this year.  Actually I don’t really need to say very much at all, except to refer you to Shabir’s article on Double Cleansing, which I have linked below.  Essentially the first cleanse is a gut cleanse, for which Shabir recommends Complete Fibre Cleanse and the second is a liver cleanse, using Milk Thistle Complex because the subtle signs of poor liver function include fatigue, mood swings and complexion issues.

Staying with Milk Thistle Complex, this formulation contains a trinity of liver cleansing herbs, which are Milk Thistle, Artichoke Leaf Extract and Dandelion Root.  See, another Dandelion mention, which would explain why I have chosen the image of a Dandelion this week.  That’s one way of being neat and the other way is of course by telling you that I am dropping the price of Complete Fibre Cleanse from £21 to £18 and as a gesture, because I can do no more, I am dropping the price of Milk Thistle Complex from £11.99 to £10.  I will hold the price of Complete Fibre Cleanse until next Friday, but I can’t do the same with Milk Thistle Complex unfortunately, so that is a one day only offer, ending at midnight BST tonight, Saturday 17 July).  Should it last that long.
VH Editorial: Double Cleansing The Body; Complete Fibre Cleanse £18 for 168 grams (offer ends at midnight BST on Friday 23 July); Milk Thistle Complex by HealthAid £10 for 60 Tablets (offer ends at midnight tonight, Saturday 17 July)

I have often written about the trauma of hair loss over the past 18 months and as Sarah now reports in Health Notes, more than one in five people hospitalised with Covid-19 have experienced hair loss within six months of first being infected with the virus, according to a study published in The Lancet earlier this year.  So this week Sarah investigates the links between the pandemic and hair loss in a supportive and informative article, which includes Shabir’s recommendations for supplementation.
Thinning Hair? Could It Be Down To Covid by Sarah Stacey

With a podium moment appearing imminently on the horizon, I will do one more offer before we head into the Saturday only treat.  It is from Aurelia and it is their hero product, Miracle Cleanser.  In fact it is the full-size Miracle Cleanser (120 ml) and it comes complete with their antibacterial bamboo muslin cloth.  This is not actually the moment I wrote about above, but it is certainly a bit of a moment as I take the price of Miracle Cleanser down from £42 to £21.  I don’t really think I need to add anything to this.  I’m done.
Miracle Cleanser by Aurelia London £21 for 120 ml (whilst stock lasts)

This week’s Saturday only treat is from Temple Spa.  Except I can’t tell you precisely the product you will receive because we have several different Temple Spa products to give away.  So with every order placed for £30 and above, excluding p&p, you will receive a Temple Spa Turndown product and I hope you enjoy using it, whatever it may be.  And just to add here, Temple Spa’s Mani-Pedi Cures, which we launched a few weeks ago, appears to be a rather fabulous gift solution.  So we are being told.  Bravo Temple Spa.
Mani-Pedi Cures by Temple Spa £30

So as we come to the end of another Weekend Read, I have some news that I would like to share with you.  Several weeks ago I wrote that I would continue to fight the fight against the perpetrators of abuse, for and on behalf of all of us.  At that time I also wrote that I had taken this issue straight into the heart of Government, the Cabinet Office, via Dame Teresa Graham DBE, Chair of UK Finance’s SME Advisory Group & HMRC’s Administrative Burdens Advisory Board. 

This investigation is being taken extraordinarily seriously and it will cover several different issues, including corporate and cyber bullying and on from that, evidence-based corruption, both historic and recent, the likes of which would make your eyes water.  As with all deep-rooted investigations, these things take time, so by way of an update, we have recently made representation to HMRC about the confusion and difficulties so many of us are experiencing regarding the continued fallout from Covid-19 and Brexit.  Obviously there are many aspects to this, but clarity is key, together with an investigation into the legislative burdens placed upon small business.

Most clearly we are unable to overturn certain legislation, but with 367 people from HMRC in attendance, some much-needed changes will now be made in response to our representation.  But of course it doesn’t end there. In a way this is just the beginning because HMRC have requested that we road-test all improvements going forward, which it is our privilege to do.  And share with you.  With that said, my thanks to Dame Teresa for her ongoing tenacity and support; to Lara who represented us and to all at HMRC for their listening and understanding.  And because one or two of them are customers, they will read this.  Waving.

All that remains is to share the Saturday song with you.  It is a song that I have always been able to relate to, as it reminds us that no matter what, we are alive.
Ain’t Got No, I Got Life by Nina Simone; The VH Playlist

With love

Gill x


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*Free gifts will only be granted if the items purchased are physical products and your total basket value exceeds the required amount noted.  Saturday only treats are subject to change should the specified gift run out prior to your purchase and are only included in orders placed between 7.45am (GMT) and Midnight (GMT) on the Saturday the Weekend Read is sent.  VH Addicts membership is a digital product and therefore will be excluded from the basket value.  Some gifts are blocked from international shipping due to local limitations imposed based on the country destination.  If this is the case, we will replace the gift with one that is able to be shipped to your destination.