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How to use Hive Social, the latest popular alternative to Twitter

2023-03-19 06:14:08

How to use Hive Social, the latest popular alternative to Twitter

Since Elon Musk bought Twitter, devout tweeters have been scouring for a new place to post and keep up with their favorite creators. Hive Social is a fandom approved alternative to Twitter.

How to use Hive Social, the latest popular alternative to Twitter(图1)

Unlike another popular Twitter replacement, Mastodon, Hive Social isn't a decentralized platform, making it an easier transition and much more intuitive. The platform, created by Raluca Pop, launched in 2019 and has seen an influx of over 750,000 users since Nov. 17. On Nov. 21 it surpassed a million users.

SEE ALSO: Over 1 million users and counting: How Hive Social became Twitter's newest rival

Hive Social allows you to post text or images without the length limitations of Twitter and already has an editing function. But the best part of the app is that you can customize your profile colors and add songs to your profile.

Here's how to get started on Hive Social.

How to sign-up:

1. Download the app.

Right now there is no desktop version of the platform available, so you have to download the app via Apple's App Store or Android's Google Play store.

2. Select "Create an Account" and the method by which you want to sign up.

Tap "Create an Account." Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social

3. Enter your email or phone number and a password.

Depending on whether you created an account with your phone number or email you'll either need to enter a verification code or click the link in a verification email.

4. Choose your display name and username.

5. Select three topics that interest you like art, memes, and movies.

What are your top interests? Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social

6. Tap "Start Exploring."

The beehive icon in the lower left hand corner will show you posts by people you follow and the magnifying glass icon takes you to the discover page that's organized by different topics like trending, for you, music, and books. To post, tap the plus sign on the bottom center of your screen.

How to customize the color of your profile:

1. Tap the profile icon in the lower right hand corner.

2. Select the settings wheel in the upper right hand corner.

Tap the settings wheel. Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social.

3. Tap "Color Themes."

4. Select a color.

Which color represents you? Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social

How to add music to your profile:

To add music to your profile you have to connect your Spotify or Apple Music account to your Hive Social. Currently, Spotify is unavailable to connect, but it is coming soon(Opens in a new tab). It's free to have one song on your Hive Social and costs $0.99 to feature two songs.

1. Tap the profile icon in the lower right hand corner.

2. Select the music note icon.

Tap the music note icon. Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social

3. Select "Connect" next to Spotify or Apple Music.

4. Navigate back to your profile.

5. Tap the music note again.

6. Select "Free."

One song is free. Credit: Screenshot: Hive Social

7. Search your desired song.

8. Tap the purple plus sign.

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    "It was like that line from Mean Girls," Sadeghi said, in reference to Regina George's iconic zinger(Opens in a new tab). "Like, 'Stop trying to make virtual internships happen.'"

    The coronavirus pandemic changed quickly that.

    "This is the future of work," Sadeghi said. "People don't need to put on a suit, go to a cubicle, or wait until summer to [do an internship.] We're preparing people for what work looks like now."

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    The platform, which their team initially built in 48 hours after being told to leave campus(Opens in a new tab) because of COVID-19, compiles job listings, not unlike Indeed or Glassdoor. Students can look for internships by job category, role, and internship type (current or exclusively summer; paid or unpaid).

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    "This is the future of work. We're preparing people for what work looks like now."

    Intern From Home primarily posts internships from startups, including some from Y Combinator(Opens in a new tab) and Snap’s accelerator program(Opens in a new tab), which typically reach out to the site to get their internship positions listed. Students then submit applications, all of which are managed through Google Forms.

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    Depending on a student’s background, an internship might mark their first encounter with an office setting, Vera from Pay Our Interns notes. For many, a formal internship can serve as an introduction to the basics of office life, such as how to interact with co-workers and dress for work. Should virtual internships remain popular, it could become more difficult for students — particularly those who are first-generation or from low-income backgrounds — to learn the ins and outs of working in an office.

    VanDerziel, executive director of NACE, highlighted several skills that are especially important to an intern’s success in a virtual setting.

    First, interns need to be proactive about communicating. It's easier to disappear from your boss' radar when you're just a name on a screen. They also need time management skills, since there is nothing stopping them from wasting a couple of hours watching Netflix each day. For those with chaotic home lives, carving out the time and space to work could prove especially challenging, VanDerziel notes.

    Additionally, interns need a level of tech savvy and adaptability to adjust to unfamiliar situations. Even students acclimated to a semester of remote schoolwork might not be totally comfortable in a more formal work environment.

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    "We found that 41 percent of employers were reducing the length of the internship for the summer," VanDerziel said. "What that says to me is that companies are being creative and careful."

    Though in some cases existing programs are just shortening their usual in-person program to adapt to remote work, VanDerziel also points to the emergence of what he calls "micro internships," shorter, project-based internships, which can be a way for interns to gain specific skills.

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    Requiring students to move to major metropolises, like New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, has long prevented students unable to relocate from accessing otherwise valuable internship opportunities. (As a point of reference: The average rent in Los Angeles is over $2,500, according to the listing service RentCafe(Opens in a new tab).)

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    Though VanDerziel notes some internship programs are able to provide laptops and iPads for their interns working remotely right now, it could be a barrier for many interns, particularly those in financially harder-hit industries, or those working for small companies.

    Virtual mixers

    At big companies, internships typically include educational and social interaction among interns, VanDerziel points out, which is something that has had to pivot online as well.

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    In the past, though, networking events, like industry-specific happy hours, were cost-prohibitive for many interns, Vera points out. Now, plenty of virtual internship programs have remote happy hours and mixers, which Vera acknowledges could help those unable to afford in-person meetups.

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    When students left his school’s campus in March, Isgar felt as if the main thing missing from remote learning was stimulating in-class discussions. "Cohorts" is meant to recreate that in an internship context.

    "The mission is to replicate those discussions," Isgar said. "It’s challenging to be networking [remotely]. You can’t get coffee."

    It's likely, though, that interns down the road won't be fetching coffee either, like so many internships of yore. With the disruption to internships already brought on by the summer of 2020, it's likely that changes to the working world for young people are just starting.

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    Keys commended the collective action of those who have joined the fight for justice in whichever way they can. "You're taking your heartbreak and your outrage and you're putting into into action and you are showing that your generation is the one that's going to heal this."

    She also took a moment to reflect that "the world feels broken" right now, and that this moment of action, outrage, and uprising has been a long time coming. "The pain we're experiencing right now, it's not new. But it feels different this time, right? I think for the first time, all of us, no matter what we look like or where we're from, we can see so clearly what injustice looks like and now we all can choose how to respond.

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    Keys ended with a call for students to take the moment to celebrate their accomplishments, and to take whatever hat they have and throw it in the air, to honor themselves "in the most powerful time to be coming of age."

    It's just under four minutes, but it speaks loud and clear. Mandatory viewing for students who no longer have to answer to anyone telling them something is mandatory viewing.

    While you're at it, why not spend a moment with the Schitt's Creek cast thanking your teachers. (There's a performance in it for you, don't roll your eyes.)

  • Cops and Live P.D. have now both been canceled

    Cops and Live P.D. have now both been canceled

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    On Tuesday, Paramount Network announced it would no longer produce Cops, a half-hour reality series that takes camera crews on police ride-alongs and investigations. On Wednesday, A&E announced(Opens in a new tab) that Live P.D. would not be returning either.

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    Cops, which first premiered on Fox in 1989, ran for a total of 31 years before its cancelation, making it one of the longest standing reality programs in history. Amid national protests against police brutality and systemic racism, Paramount Network pulled the program(Opens in a new tab) from its schedule last week as A&E took similar steps with Live P.D.

    "Cops is not on the Paramount Network and we don’t have any current or future plans for it to return," a spokesperson said, per The Hollywood Reporter(Opens in a new tab). Cops had been part of the Paramount Network since 2013.

    “This is a critical time in our nation’s history and we have made the decision to cease production on Live PD,” A&E told Deadline(Opens in a new tab). “Going forward, we will determine if there is a clear pathway to tell the stories of both the community and the police officers whose role it is to serve them. And with that, we will be meeting with community and civil rights leaders as well as police departments.”

    Sources familiar with the matter told The Hollywood Reporter and Deadline that Paramount had pre-existing plans to move away from unscripted programming. However, Cops had been scheduled to debut the first episode of Season 33 on Monday. Reality shows Ink Master, Bar Rescue, Battle of the Fittest Couples, and more remain with Paramount.

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    Live P.D. also reportedly captured, but later destroyed,(Opens in a new tab) footage of the death of a black man, Javier Ambler, in custody of Texas law enforcement in March 2019.

    UPDATE: June 11, 2020, 12:03 p.m. AEST This story has been updated to include the announcement that 'Live P.D.' will not be returning from hiatus.

  • New meme has some great ideas for what to put up instead of Christopher Columbus statues

    New meme has some great ideas for what to put up instead of Christopher Columbus statues

    It's way overdue, but America is reckoning with some of the darker parts of its history.


    As the fight to remove Confederate monuments continues, lots of folks were also wondering why the nation still displays statues of Christopher Columbus across the country. The famous explorer, after all, carried out horrific atrocities, including mass genocide of the indigenous people in the Americas.

    Still, some Italian Americans hold onto the idea that he represents something bigger, including New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who defended having a statue of the explorer in NYC on Thursday.

    "The Christopher Columbus statue in some way represents the Italian American legacy in this country and the Italian American contribution in this country," he said at a press conference(Opens in a new tab).

    Setting aside the fact that Columbus sailed for Spain and never set foot(Opens in a new tab) in the United States, some helpful folks online came up with a great meme about who might prove a suitable replacement for the explorer. Things took a turn toward the absurd and, honestly, it was wonderful.

    1. Not a bad idea

    2. I need to see this statue in person

    3. Keeping with the Sopranos theme

    4. Could get behind this

    5. I support any and all efforts to have more statues of corn

    6. Please find me a better Italian American icon. You cannot.

    Danny DeVito a true Italian America icon. Credit: Shutterstock

    7. In case you didn't know, this is Bigtime Tommie(Opens in a new tab)

    8. You don't even need to change that many letters!

    9. More Willie in the world is definitely a good idea

    10. A litany of options

    11. I don't know who Mr. Pickle is but I really, really support this

    12. Kind of thought we were past the Baby Yoda moment, but sure why not?

  • Paint-by-numbers should be your next relaxing self-care hobby

    Paint-by-numbers should be your next relaxing self-care hobby

    When it comes to self-care these days, your efforts to wind down don't always have to be ambitious.


    You should mediate, tackle a reading list, or set out to complete a challenging home improvement project if those things soothe you. But perfect self-care activities can also be as simple as playing with sidewalk chalk, coloring with crayons, or doing a puzzle.

    In the spirit of reclaiming beloved childhood activities as a means of de-stressing in adulthood, we have a suggestion for your new self-care hobby: Paint-by-numbers. Next time you need to relax, give it a try.

    The allure of losing yourself in methodical tasks

    Some of you may remember making paint-by-numbers artwork when you were younger, but for those who've never tried it, or who have simply forgotten what it's like to immerse yourself in the mundane task of filling in little numbered areas with colorful paint, let's review.

    A paint-by-numbers kit comes with a piece of paper or canvas that features a numbered, outlined design. You'll also receive small containers of different colored paints, and a variety of different size brushes.

    Paint-by-numbers in action. Credit: Getty Images / iStockphoto

    The directions that come with each DIY kit will break the paint-by-numbers process down for you, but essentially, your job is extremely simple: You fill in the areas of white space on the page with paint. You'll be able to determine exactly which color goes where by matching the numbers on the top of each paint container with the corresponding numbers on the paper. Depending on the difficulty of your project you might be asked to mix some paints together to form new colors, or occasionally wash some brushes, but otherwise the activity is mostly straightforward and mindless.

    SEE ALSO: 10 ways to make your work from home desk less depressing

    For several minutes or hours you can give your brain a rest from worrying about the world and take solace in thinking solely about which paint color goes where. You can train your eyes to scan the canvas in front of you for numbers like "5" or "29," and let yourself feel a small sense of accomplishment as the once bleak page before you transforms into an eye-catching masterpiece.

    Doesn't that sound nice? And one of the best things about paint-by-numbers is that they help even the least artistic people to create professional-looking depictions.

    A perfect quarantine craft

    Completing paint-by numbers, especially more complex ones, often requires some time. Which is why the guided painting projects are a perfect quarantine craft.

    If you're looking for a way to keep your hands and mind busy while staying at home, something to fill your empty social schedule, or a delightful distraction from social media, consider investing in a paint by numbers kit. And if you have old paint-by-numbers that you haven't yet used, now's the perfect time to dig them out.

    People of all ages are falling in love with paint-by-numbers in quarantine, and since you end up with a nice picture to show for your time, it's truly becoming a self-care hobby worth sharing with the internet.

    Where to find paint-by-numbers kits

    If you're looking to get into this very low stakes hobby, there are a bunch of places to shop for kits online. Try Etsy(Opens in a new tab), JOANN Fabric and Craft Stores(Opens in a new tab), Michael's(Opens in a new tab), Herrschners(Opens in a new tab), and Artsool(Opens in a new tab), among others. You can also transform your own photographs into a paint-by-number activities, too.

    Here are a few of the many paint-by-numbers templates that are just waiting to be filled in.

    Mountain Spring River(Opens in a new tab)

    A gorgeous mountain and  river scene. Credit: OurPaintAddictions / etsy

    Price: $27 on Etsy(Opens in a new tab).

    Pink Vespa Roses(Opens in a new tab)

    If you wish you were traveling. Credit: paintathomestore / etsy

    Price: $30 on Etsy(Opens in a new tab).

    Houseplant Set(Opens in a new tab)

    Wall plants! Credit: NotablyPaperCompany / etsy

    Price: from $10.00 on Etsy(Opens in a new tab).

    If there's a specific subject you'd like to paint, such as animals, plants, scenery, or food, be sure to include it in your search terms. And when you're seeking out your perfect paint-by-numbers template, keep in mind the level of difficulty you want to take on. Consider starting with a more basic version and then see if you want to move on to more intricate ones.

    If paper and paint isn't your style, have no fear. You can always download a paint-by-numbers app — like Paint By Number(Opens in a new tab), Happy Color(Opens in a new tab), or Colors by Number – No.Draw(Opens in a new tab)— on your phone or tablet for a soothing virtual experience.

    Whichever method you use, we're sure paint-by-numbers will add some serious variety and color to your daily unwinding routine.

Random articles


  • Your ultimate guide to breast play 

    Your ultimate guide to breast play 

    Perhaps one of the world's greatest bedroom tragedies is the sidelining of breast play. There are a lot of moving parts to sex (literally), from all the body parts to think about, plus your technique, whether your partner’s having a good time and all those erogenous zones to remember. It seems like, in all that, poor old breasts get forgotten about. Speak to anyone with breasts who’s had sex and they’ll tell you a lot of sexual partners forget all about the fun bags — especially if those partners happen to be cisgender men. 


    Breast play is overlooked in partnered sex, perhaps because of the pedestalling of penetration above all else. But those who aren’t utilising breast play regularly in their sex are seriously missing a trick, as research suggests breasts are the best way to unlock heightened pleasure and stimulate orgasms in women. 

    A 2011 study published in the Journal of Sexual Medicine(Opens in a new tab) says that nipple stimulation activates the same areas of the brain as clitoris and vagina. The study aimed to map out and compare sensory responses to clitoral, vaginal, cervical, and nipple self-stimulation, and results showed nipple stimulation offered high-quality stimulation and mentally erotic association. That’s the sciency way of saying that feeling up boobs is a massive turn-on, like having your genitals touched. Who knew?

    SEE ALSO: How to perform cunnilingus like a pro

    Why do people forget about the boobs in the bedroom?

    There’s a reason we forget about boobs. Tom Davies, sex expert and product lead at sexual wellness brand Bodyjoys(Opens in a new tab) tells Mashable, "Breast play is often forgotten about because we’re caught up in the moment and are too focused on ‘the Big Show’ i.e. our partner reaching orgasm. But breast play can be an exciting way to get there — and for some, it can even be achieved by only breast play." 

    He adds that sex positions can often be an underlying reason why breasts are forgotten about. "Whether you’re attempting reverse-cowgirl or going down on your partner, it can be tricky to keep your mind (and your grip) on the task at hand," he explains.

    SEE ALSO: How to finger your partner

    "A key way to incorporate breast play is to introduce it [before penetrative sex, if that’s where you’re headed]. Take time to explore your partner’s breasts (and not just the nipple). With hundreds of nerve endings available for stimulation, you’ll soon realise that it’s not so easy to forget after all," he explains.  

    And, as always with all sex, communication is key. As much as we’d love our sexual partners to read minds in the bedroom, you can’t expect them to know you want your breasts felt up if you haven’t told them. As Davies recommends, "Bring up the topic of breast play before you engage in sexual activity so you can find out what your partner enjoys and what they don’t."

    Why try breast play?

    Well, everything we just said about how horny it gets people. And, it can be a really exciting way to work towards orgasm (if that’s your goal) in the bedroom. 

    Though it ends up getting prioritised in every which way inside the bedroom, penetrative sex doesn’t always do it for women. In fact, only 18.4 percent of women can reach orgasm from penetrative intercourse(Opens in a new tab) alone. They are actually much more likely to achieve orgasm through hand and oral play — all the types of sex that get shoved to the side as "foreplay." Since this type of sex works best for most women, it’s time to make them the main event, and bring breast play along for the ride too. 

    Want more sex and dating stories in your inbox? Sign up for Mashable's new weekly After Dark newsletter.

    There’s a shockingly low amount of breast-related research into sexual desire out there (let’s do better, scientists!) but some research suggests that during sex, women want you to touch their boobs about as much as you want to touch them. A 2006 study(Opens in a new tab) (we know, it’s mad that this is the most recent breast play study) found that a whopping 81.5 percent of women surveyed received enhanced sexual arousal from breast play and nipple stimulation and wanted their partners to use it more. 

    Having said all of this, breast and nipple play is definitely not only for people with vulvas. Jess Wilde, sex expert at the online shop So Divine(Opens in a new tab), says it's common that penis owners overlook chest play, thinking it's not for them. "This is a myth, and many people with penises find chest and nipple play extremely enjoyable."

    She adds, "Most people have two nipples, which instantly doubles the potential for fun! And they're located right on the front of the body, making them easy to access during solo and couples playtime, and in the perfect position for watching what's going on."

    Basically, if you’re not prioritising breasts and chests in your sex, you’re limiting your own pleasure. 

    Can you orgasm from breast play?

    In short, yes. Some people are able to achieve orgasm through breast play alone. Just like the genital area, your chest area also has many nerve endings, which makes it possible for some individuals to orgasm by stimulating the breasts.

    "Stimulating the nipples triggers the same region of the brain as the genitals, so it’s clear why some individuals are able to achieve an orgasm this way," Davies explains. "Those who’ve experienced orgasms through breast play tend to indicate that the experience is far more intense."

    SEE ALSO: A guide to having nipple orgasms

    Of course, this is all subjective. Orgasms, depending on the type (clitoral, G-spot, nipple), differ from person to person. What might be intense for one person may be mild for another. Everyone is different so not all people with boobs will be able to have an orgasm through breast play. But it’s fun to give it a try! 

    How to play with breasts 

    As with all sex play, wetter is better, so it’s a good idea to involve lubes or oils in breast play. For a full breast massage, Wilde suggests using a good quality massage oil to enhance glide and sensation, and make the chest glisten with glory.

    "Be selective when it comes to aromas, and choose one you both like the smell of," Wilde advises. "The close proximity of the chest to the face makes it a perfect opportunity for adding a little aromatherapy to playtime. The sandalwood and fig massage oil by So Divine(Opens in a new tab) is perfect for this."

    SEE ALSO: Everything you need to know about the G-spot 

    The same goes for nipple play, where you can use oils, lubricants or your own saliva to keep things wet and create more sensations. "Adding this to nipple stimulation heightens sensation whilst preventing overstimulation or soreness. Water-based lube is great, but a silicone lube will feel even better as they help things stay slippy for longer," she adds. 

    Now for what you’re actually going to do with your hands... 

    There’s no wrong way to play with breasts. Like all play, it’s about trying different movements and sensations and keeping a dialogue going so you can adapt to what your partner likes, and doesn’t.

    There are a few techniques Wilde recommends as a place to start, though:

    • Add a drizzle of massage oil to the palm of your hand and vigorously rub your hands together (this warms the oil). Then proceed to coat the chest with oil, spreading it everywhere you'd like to caress. Follow up with a gentle massage, varying between using your fingertips to your whole palm to awaken the skin. Slowly move closer and closer to the nipples to increase the intensity. 

    • Using a slippery finger (lube up!) delicately circle around the nipples, focussing on the areola and the very edge of the nipples.  

    • Make a relaxed 'peace sign' or 'Vulcan salute' and place a nipple in the space between your fingers, allowing the inner surface of your fingers to rest against the sides of the nipple. Now stroke back and forth, and squeeze the nipple.

    • Holding a nipple between your finger and thumb experiment with stroking up and down, gently rolling the nipple side to side, and lightly pinching and tugging, to see what feels best.  

    • If you like the sensation of pinching, step it up a notch. Squeeze the nipple for as long as it’s comfortable and release. This imitates nipple clamp play in the way it temporarily limits blood flow to the nipple. Once released, blood flow returns to normal and provides a pleasurable throbbing sensation.  

    Remember to be mindful of nipple piercings during play and be careful not to catch or snag jewellery.  

    Davies adds that hands aren’t your only tools for exploring breasts. "Your mouth can also be a great way to stimulate your partner’s breasts and nipples, whether you choose to use your tongue, lips, or teeth," he explains.

    SEE ALSO: A beginner's guide to sensation play

    "If your partner feels comfortable, gently nibble the outer breast area, working your way towards the nipple. Again, if they consent, you can increase the pressure you’re applying. Having a safe word for instances like this is a great way to communicate if the pressure becomes too much," he added.

    Your tongue is another great technique for breast and nipple play. Davies suggests trying to kiss the breast as if it were your partner’s mouth, incorporating your tongue if you and your partner feel comfortable. "You can also change the shape of your tongue to apply different levels of pressure and sensation. Think pointy versus flat — and see which they prefer," he advises. 

    How to spice up breast play 

    If you’ve done breast play a few times and you fancy yourself an expert, you might be looking for ways to spice things up and experience new types of pleasure. 

    For this, Davies suggests trying a little wax play. With the sensitivity of breasts and there being a surface area to pour wax on, breast play makes for the perfect opportunity to try this activity. We have a guide on everything you need to know about wax play

    Or, food can be incorporated into breast play. Think sweet treats, like chocolate spread, honey, or cream. The person receiving breast play can smother their chest in something, while the other person licks it off. Then you get all those incredible sensations and a light snack! "A little can go a long way, so experiment with different flavours," Davies adds. 

    What types of toys can be used with breast play?

    "Once you and your partner have experimented with breast play using your hands and mouths, you could try toys," Davies suggests. "See which textures and sensations work well for you, from feather ticklers to nipple clamps, finger vibrators and even household items like ice cubes, there are plenty of options."

    Nipple suckers are fantastic little toys which apply gentle suction to each nipple to increase sensitivity and make them more erect. They are especially useful for people with inverted nipples as the suction can help to coax a shy nipple out for playtime.  

    SEE ALSO: The best sex toys under $50 (that are actually worth using)

    Then there are the more kinky options. "There are lots of sensual and arousing bondage accessories you may want to explore for breast play, Davies says. "Nipple clamps can add another layer of excitement to breast play. These work for both solo and partnered sex. Of course, this is dependent on your pain threshold — however, there are different types of nipple clamps, some of which clamp harder than others." 

    Wilde explains that nipple clamps come in a wide range of styles and intensities, but they certainly don't need to be painful. "For first timers, pick up a set of lightweight, adjustable nipple clamps with silicone-coated tips for a beginner-friendly introduction to nipple clamping. Adjustable clamps like this put you in complete control of the level of pinch, from a barely-there squeeze, to a thrilling tweak," she recommends. 

    Whether you use a vibe, a sucker or a clamp, there’s a few things to keep in mind to ensure your own safety, and that you’re comfortable. First, always use a drop of lube to enhance comfort and pleasure. 

    Don’t feel pressure to keep clamps on for a while and take note of your own comfort levels while using them. "How long you can wear nipple clamps depends how tight they are squeezing the nipples," Wilde says. "An intense squeeze should be removed after around 10 minutes, whilst a loose clamp can be worn for up to 30 minutes."

    Never wear nipple clamps for longer than 30 minutes, as this could result in injury. During wear make sure to check the tip of the nipple often, ensuring it hasn't lost sensitivity and is still a normal, healthy-looking colour.  

    How to use breast play in masturbation 

    Breast play doesn’t just have to be a partnered thing. In fact, some of the best breast play sessions come out of masturbation, or solo sex. 

    Wilde says finding out what you enjoy is often the best part of masturbation and makes for a great environment to discover what you like without any specific expectations. Don’t put pressure on yourself to have an orgasm; simply use this time exploring breast play as a period of self-care and self-exploration.

    "Using techniques such as nipple stimulation and chest massage (don’t forget the lube or massage oil), you can discover what you like and don’t like," Wilde explains. "If you feel comfortable, you can incorporate this into your regular masturbation routine and see what it adds to the experience."

    If you don’t know where to start, gently run your fingertips over your chest area. "You don’t have to concentrate on one particular area (nipples, areola, etc.), but explore it fully. Even this simple action can provide you with plenty of sexual stimulation," she says. 

    Davies notes that bringing toys into solo breast play can up the ante. "Vibrators can be used in both hands and you could use one for your genitals and the other for your breast area," he suggests. 

    "Although your mouth might not feel like an option during solo sex, there are ways to utilise it during solo breast play as well. Try applying lube to your breasts and blow on the lubed up area," he adds. This can create a really intense sensation, especially if you use lubes with tingly sensations.

    If you want to make breast play a regular course in your sex menu, talk to your partner about your desires and how you’d like to play with them together. Wilde points out that even if your partner isn’t playing with your breasts, you can also play with them yourself during partnered sex. In fact, this is one of her favourite ways to introduce breast play to a partner. 

    "While your partner pleasures you in other ways, increase your enjoyment by using your available hand(s) to play with your chest," she recommends. "This usually leads to one of two results. One is that your partner will see how much fun you're having (and how hot it looks) and will likely want to join in. Or they will ask you about it." After sex, she advises taking a moment to say how much fun you just had together, and make sure to compliment something they did. Then, ask them if they can try breast play the next time you have sex. Then, you’ve opened a dialogue about breast play and trying something new together. 

  • Quordle today: Here are the answers and hints for September 9

    Quordle today: Here are the answers and hints for September 9

    Happy Friday! Unless you're stuck on Quordle, in which case I hope you'll start having a happy Friday as soon as you get yourself unstuck.


    Well, it's not hard to find the Quordle solution. Scroll to the bottom of this page, and there it is. But are you sure you need all four answers? Maybe you just need a strategy guide. Either way, scroll down, and you'll get what you need.

    What is Quordle?

    Quordle is a five-letter word guessing game similar to Wordle, except each guess applies letters to four words at the same time. You get nine guesses instead of six to correctly guess all four words. It looks like playing four Wordle games at the same time, and that is essentially what it is. But it's not nearly as intimidating as it sounds.

    Is Quordle harder than Wordle?

    Yes, though not diabolically so.

    Where did Quordle come from?

    Amid the Wordle boom of late 2021 and early 2022, when everyone was learning to love free, in-browser, once-a-day word guessing games, creator Freddie Meyer says he took inspiration from one of the first big Wordle variations, Dordle — the one where you essentially play two Wordles at once. He took things up a notch, and released Quordle on January 30(Opens in a new tab). Meyer's creation was covered in The Guardian(Opens in a new tab) six days later, and now, according to Meyer, it attracts millions of daily users. Today, Meyer earns modest revenue(Opens in a new tab) from Patreon, where dedicated Quordle fans can donate to keep their favorite puzzle game running. 

    How is Quordle pronounced?

    “Kwordle.” It should rhyme with “Wordle,” and definitely should not be pronounced exactly like "curdle.”

    Is Quordle strategy different from Wordle?

    Yes and no.

    Your starting strategy should be the same as with Wordle. In fact, if you have a favorite Wordle opening word, there’s no reason to change that here. We suggest something rich in vowels, featuring common letters like C, R, and N. But you do you.

    After your first guess, however, you’ll notice things getting out of control if you play Quordle exactly like Wordle.

    What should I do in Quordle that I don’t do in Wordle?

    Solving a Wordle puzzle can famously come down to a series of single letter-change variations. If you’ve narrowed it down to “-IGHT,” you could guess “MIGHT” “NIGHT” “LIGHT” and “SIGHT” and one of those will probably be the solution — though this is also a famous way to end up losing in Wordle, particularly if you play on “hard mode.” In Quordle, however, this sort of single-letter winnowing is a deadly trap, and it hints at the important strategic difference between Wordle and Quordle: In Quordle, you can't afford to waste guesses unless you're eliminating as many letters as possible at all times. 

    Guessing a completely random word that you already know isn't the solution, just to eliminate three or four possible letters you haven’t tried yet, is thought of as a desperate, latch-ditch move in Wordle. In Quordle, however, it's a normal part of the player's strategic toolset.

    Is there a way to get the answer faster?

    In my experience Quordle can be a slow game, sometimes dragging out longer than it would take to play Wordle four times. But a sort of blunt-force guessing approach can speed things up. The following strategy also works with Wordle if you only want the solution, and don’t care about having the fewest possible guesses:

    Try starting with a series of words that puts all the vowels (including Y) on the board, along with some other common letters. We've had good luck with the three words: “NOTES,” “ACRID,” and “LUMPY.” YouTuber DougMansLand(Opens in a new tab) suggests four words: “CANOE,” “SKIRT,” “PLUMB,” and “FUDGY.”

    Most of the alphabet is now eliminated, and you’ll only have the ability to make one or two wrong guesses if you use this strategy. But in most cases you’ll have all the information you need to guess the remaining words without any wrong guesses.

    If strategy isn't helping, and you're still stumped, here are some hints:

    A semi-useful hint about today’s puzzle

    Synonyms for all four words are in the following very strange sentence (in no particular order).

    If you all keep shouting from under my balcony, I'll use my hoist to pull a whole row of you up here, and then whack you with my baseball bat until a chunk of your hair flies off.

    Are there any double or triple letters in today’s Quordle words?


    Are any rare letters being used in today’s Quordle like Q or Z?


    What do today’s Quordle words start with?

    C, P, A, and W.

    What are the answers for today’s Quordle?

    Are you sure you want to know?

    There’s still time to turn back.

    OK, you asked for it. The answers are:

    1. CLUMP

    2. POUND

    3. AISLE

    4. WINCH

  • An interview with Ryan Creamer, Pornhubs most wholesome star

    An interview with Ryan Creamer, Pornhubs most wholesome star

    Welcome to Porn Week, Mashable's annual close up on the business and pleasure of porn.


    When I learned that Mashable would be hosting Porn Week, I knew the site's coverage wouldn't be complete without an article on my old pal, Ryan Creamer.

    I first met Ryan in January 2016 when we both started editorial internships at Mashable. Now, four years later, he's known as Pornhub's most wholesome star. Yeah, you read that correctly. Wholesome! And yes, Creamer is his actual last name.

    In 2018, after realizing how easy it was to get a verified Pornhub account(Opens in a new tab), Ryan decided to grace the online pornography platform with his delightful sense of humor. He posted his first video(Opens in a new tab), titled "I Tuck You In After You Have Cum," in which he's seen tucking the viewer into bed and giving them a goodnight kiss. People responded positively to Ryan's giant smile, navy blue sweater, and unassuming demeanor, so he continued to share videos of himself performing respectful, G-rated porn tropes. He's made forehead kiss compilation videos, filmed himself doing the dishes without being asked, and even delivered breakfast in bed.

    Today, Ryan's uploaded 80 hilariously charming videos(Opens in a new tab) to Pornhub, which have collectively gained more than 11 million views. He's created his own merch(Opens in a new tab), attended the 2019 Pornhub awards (after receiving a nomination for "Best Twitter,") and has collaborated on wholesome videos with professional pornstars including Mia Malkova(Opens in a new tab), Asa Akira(Opens in a new tab), and Angela White(Opens in a new tab). The Pornhub channel even acts as a little source of income(Opens in a new tab).

    As Mashable explores the impact of porn in today's society and dives deep into aspects of the industry and online communities, I felt it was crucial to catch up with the 27-year-old who's putting pure content on Pornhub. So I spoke with Ryan about his comedic roots, why he started making wholesome videos, and what's in store for his channel.

    Mashable: I know you've been doing comedy for several years now. Could you share a little background on how and when you started getting involved in it?

    Ryan Creamer: I got involved I guess intentionally. I went to Fordham in the Bronx, and they had a little black box theater, an improv club, and a stand-up club. I got involved doing stuff there, and the people I met there were like, "Go to UCB" [Upright Citizens Brigade(Opens in a new tab)]. They kind of introduced me into a world of performing comedy. I think I was always interested and liked watching it, but I didn't really understand the way to pursue it. So that was the first introduction.

    I assume you were a hilarious child. Is this true?

    [Laughs] No. As a child — I mean, this should not be a surprise to anyone — I was extremely nerdy and raised very religious. I was like a dweeb. I don't think anyone in elementary school would classify me as like a class clown type person. I think I was funny, but it was largely like how red hair, freckled, glasses-wearing kids are in cartoons.

    "I'm going to be the antithesis to what this site has to offer."

    Did you have a dream job as a kid?

    It's funny that you ask that, because my mom has this big box of things that she saved. And in fourth grade or whatever they had a worksheet that's like "What's your dream job?" I wrote down, "I'm going to be a running back in the NFL." I think I specified the New Orleans Saints. But after that I think I did have dreams of SNL. It was something I always grew up with and I think many people that like comedy feel it's kind of the dream job.

    I think this is a perfect segue for me to ask you to do your Coach Taylor impersonation. (Note: In addition to being Pornhub's most wholesome star, Ryan also does a great impersonation of Coach Taylor from Friday Night Lights.)

    [Laughs] Alright, alright, I'll do it just for you. [Impeccable Coach Taylor voice] "Saracen. Saracen! HEY, SARACEN! You stay away from Julie."

    [Laughs] I love it. So after leaving Mashable in 2016 you went to work for CollegeHumor. How exactly did you first get the idea to start making these wholesome Pornhub videos?

    This is so funny because this is like the first time I've had to explain it to a friend, which is so much more uncomfortable.

    [Laughs] Ryan, I know and I'm sorry. But I already know the answer so it's fine.

    Alright, good. Well I was on Pornhub, and I scrolled down — in re-explaining how this happened, it's so weird to recapture. There was so little "this is my game plan." It was really like a funny whim that I had. I think it was partly creative energy that was not getting fulfilled in the ways I wanted to at work spilling out into just being like, "What can I do that will creatively tickle me and will be fun?"

    So I was on the site and saw how easy it was to get verified and thought, "OK. What's a funny video that I could make here?" I think my goal, knowing how I present and what my sense of humor is, was like, "I'm going to be the antithesis to what this site has to offer." But it really wasn't super calculated. It truly was a video or two. And I was like, "if that's all I do that might be all I do."

    I've personally been wanting to ask you about your sweater. In every video you wear this navy blue V-neck sweater, a collared white shirt, and a striped tie. What went into choosing this look? Were you just like, "What would a gentleman wear?"

    I mean honestly kind of, yeah. I think it was partly that. Legitimately also that sweater is a sweater I never wore before. It's kind of big on me and I was like, "It'd be kind of nice to get some use out of this sweater." I think it was just like Mister Rogers-inspired. It looks like the most Mister Rogers-y clothing that I have.

    I noticed since your Pornhub channel took off you've done a bunch of collaboration videos. What has that been like, and has everyone on Pornhub embraced your presence?

    I guess I can only speak from what's been communicated to me, but everyone that I've worked with, and largely everyone that says something to me has been supportive. I'm sure there are people who aren't a huge fan of it, but I don't really hear that.

    It's been very cool and surreal, because what I've enjoyed about working with other people is the DIY-ness of it all. There's quick videos, but you have to schedule, and figure out where you're going to meet, and where the other person's comfortable with. I have to be aware of just the act of shooting. I'm showing up with an iPhone and this cheap tripod and trying not to be the creepiest dude in the world. But the benefit of collaborating with someone is the more that I do it the more I think other pornstars see someone that they know get involved, and kind of understand what the joke is, and are more interested in also jumping on board, which is cool.

    Related Video: How to have virtual sex, according to a sex expert

    Totally. Because this was never a joke on Pornhub or anyone who makes videos for the site.

    Exactly. And I think early on that was something that I kind of had to field. I mean, the thing is, once you make something it's kind of everyone's right to think about it however they want. But that certainly was never my intention.

    I know this probably isn't the easiest thing to explain to your parents, but I saw that your mom accompanied you to the Pornhub awards, which was so nice! I assume she knows and supports?

    She did! Yeah, it's been kind of a journey. It was something that I didn't really tell either my parents when I was doing it. They kind of found out two or three months later. And I think, understandably, this isn't a joke that's targeted towards my parents. It's not something that I understand them being like, "Yeah, this is great." I mean, I know they weren't thrilled about it, so I think her coming out for that was very sweet, because it was her saying, "I support what you're doing."

    Aw, I love that. OK. I know a lot of people watch these videos solely for your comedy, but I unfortunately must ask you how it feels to know that some people probably are masturbating to videos of you.

    [Laughs] I certainly have gotten that question before and what it boils down to is I just don't think about it. I'm sure it's happening. But it's truly out of my control and I really don't care. In terms of like, "Is that something that makes you uncomfortable?" It's just like, I don't really think about it.

    Yeah. Well your videos are nice and a lot of people suck, so I can fully see how someone browsing for porn might genuinely flock to your channel and be like, "One nice person!"

    [Laughs] Listen if that's the case, I'm flattered.

    Do you have a favorite video?

    The first two ["I Tuck You In After You Cum"(Opens in a new tab) and "I Encourage You As You Keep Searching For The Right Video To Cum To"(Opens in a new tab)] are definitely some of my favorites, just because it had the magic of being new. But any collaboration video I've done with someone has that excitement. I think after a while, shooting them in my room becomes samey. You know? You've done it enough that it's not super interesting to you just because it's not new. But anytime I'm able to collaborate with someone or not be my bedroom shooting I enjoy it more.

    I don't read comments often, but I did notice under the "I Shower And There's No Funny Business" video(Opens in a new tab) some people were rudely dragging your shower caddy.

    You know what? They were completely right, though. I moved out of that apartment. That shower caddy was my roommate's and we've had it since early in college. It's just so funny when you take a video of something that's in your home — you don't even think twice about it because it's normal to you. But I now think before I shoot a video, "Does this look like shit? Am I going to get absolutely fucking crushed?"

    So Ryan, how does it feel to be widely known on the internet as a wholesome guy?

    I mean, it's weird, right? Because I think partly for you, or anyone who knows me, there's this weird balancing of this personality and this idea that's a bit of a caricature. I think for anyone that doesn't know you, they can come into it thinking, "You're gonna be who I know you as." So I'm happy to be that persona, but I think the idea of having to be that all the time is something that's not doable. I really like inhabiting that and it's a vibe I definitely stand behind, but I never want to feel like I have to act like this guy until I die.

    You don't want to wear that sweater to every date?

    Exactly, exactly.

    "I don't want to burn out or not feel like this is a fun thing to do, because it should be."

    Are you currently dating anyone? I'm curious if your wholesome Pornhub presence has impacted your dating life at all.

    I am not currently dating anyone. I definitely don't lead with it. But I think that's just in general my life. I'm not that kind of guy. And on dating apps it's something that's like, if you're recognized from it that's made clear pretty quickly.

    How much longer do you want to keep making these videos?

    It's a good question. And I honestly kind of go back and forth on it. Obviously with the pandemic the resources and the creativity are pretty limited. There's like a finite number of things to satirize. And I don't ever want to do it just for the sake of trying to stay relevant. So it's hard when you're just on your own trying to do this math and be like, "How many more tracks are on this?"

    So I don't know, I think what I'm trying to do is kind of get other projects going while just whenever I feel inspired or like, "Oh, I want to make one of these videos," I'll do it. I used to do them once a week and now it's just like, well, I don't want to burn out or not feel like this is a fun thing to do, because it should be.

    Can I tell you about the first time that I thought you were wholesome?


    I remember one day in 2016 I asked who your biggest celebrity crush was, and you simply said, Norah Jones.

    [Laughs] Yep, yep. I still stand by that.

    You also have a Norah Jones shirt, right?

    I do, I do. It's in LA right now, but I've seen her a bunch of times. I'm a big Norah Jones fan.

    I can't believe you traveled without the Norah Jones shirt.

    I know, it's fucked up.

    This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

  • How to avoid flashing lights and photosensitive videos on TikTok

    How to avoid flashing lights and photosensitive videos on TikTok

    Here's how to make your For You Page safer if you're sensitive to flashing lights.


    While TikTok's curated For You Page provides an endless supply of content, users can unintentionally stumble across videos with intense visuals. Flashing lights may be detrimental for those with certain health conditions like migraines and sensory processing disorders(Opens in a new tab), and may trigger a seizure in epileptic viewers(Opens in a new tab).

    An estimated 65 million people in the world have epilepsy, and according to the Epilepsy Foundation(Opens in a new tab), one in 26 Americans will develop epilepsy at some point in their life.

    "For the people with photosensitive epilepsy, exposure to flashing lights at certain intensities or to certain visual patterns can trigger seizures," Epilepsy Foundation president Laura Thrall said in a statement with TikTok. "While the population of those with photosensitive epilepsy is small, the impact can be quite serious."

    In an effort to make its platform more accessible for affected users, TikTok added features in late 2020 to to filter out photosensitive videos(Opens in a new tab). At the advice of epilepsy advocates, TikTok now warns users before showing photosensitive content that may trigger seizures, and now gives them the option to skip all photosensitive videos in the future.

    Here's how to turn off photosensitive content on TikTok. Credit: Tiktok

    If you didn't tap "Skip all" the first time you received a warning for photosensitive content, or if you want to scroll through your For You Page uninterrupted, you can also manually toggle the filter. Here's how to turn off photosensitive content on TikTok.

    1. Go to your profile tab

    First, go to your profile tab. You can access this by tapping the "Me" icon on the far right corner of the menu bar at the bottom of your screen.

    2. Navigate to the Setting and privacy page

    Next, tap the three dots in the upper right corner of the screen, which will take you to the "Settings and privacy" menu. Scroll down to find "Accessibility" under "Content & Activity."

    Scroll down for "Accessibility." Credit: screenshot via tiktok

    Tapping "Accessibility" will bring you to a menu where you can turn on animated thumbnails, filter photosensitive videos, and turn on closed captioning. To avoid flashing lights on your For You Page, toggle the switch to the right of "Remove photosensitive videos" from off to on.

    The switch should be green after you tap it.

    Toggle the switch from off to on. Credit: Screenshot via tiktok
    Toggle switch from off to on. Credit: screenshot via tiktok

    That's all it takes to avoid photosensitive content on TikTok!

  • Caroline Calloways latest self-proclaimed scam is here

    Caroline Calloways latest self-proclaimed scam is here

    For Extremely Online people, Caroline Calloway is the ultimate Extremely Online celebrity. And after a long hiatus, she's back with another literal scam.

    The social media star, occasional writer,(Opens in a new tab) and self-proclaimed scammer(Opens in a new tab) has long been the source of virality in more ways than one. The most infamous of these is a certain 2019 tell-all essay on The Cut(Opens in a new tab) by her former ghostwriter and friend Natalie Beach. Calloway has dipped in and out of the spotlight but remains known on social media, with 649K followers(Opens in a new tab) on Instagram — though her account currently sits devoid of posts.

    But on Thursday, Calloway returned, introducing her latest venture: Caro Cards.

    SEE ALSO: 10 social media trends that changed the internet in 2022

    In a series of Instagram Stories, Calloway offered her loyal followers the opportunity to buy (very lightly) personalised tarot cards for $15 each. This is essentially a card signed by Calloway with "a prediction for your new year as well as an intention for 2023". Interested buyers can send the fee to Calloway's PayPal to receive their own Caro Card in the mail.

    Amazingly enough, Calloway said the quiet part out loud, labelling her latest initiative as "so scammy and on-brand". This characteristic self-awareness is consistent throughout the Story: "Are you guys ready for a very strange and thrilling Christmas scam......?" she asks in one post. Calloway may be trolling but she really leans into it, even describing her business model: "In the past, I've usually stuck to scams with extremely high price points. (Think: $50 OnlyFans, $250 custom portraits; $150 Dreamer Bbs; $75 Snake Oil.)"

    You've got to admire the brand. This isn't the first time Calloway has addressed her reputation as a scammer. In 2019, she wrote for Refinery29(Opens in a new tab): "Scamming is my brand right now, but it’s a narrative I would like to be excluded from. Maybe one day." This narrative spread like the wildly-overpriced and aforementioned snake oil(Opens in a new tab), and later lead to moments like her rebranded "creativity workshop" events, one of which was aptly entitled "The Scam"(Opens in a new tab).


    It appears Calloway is still in her scam era, and for just $15 you can fuel it.

  • Yes, we can reverse gray hair. No, we dont know why it works. Just chill.

    Yes, we can reverse gray hair. No, we dont know why it works. Just chill.

    There are so many news stories this year that seem likely to give us gray hairs, you'd be forgiven for missing one that gives us hope that we can restore those gray hairs back to their regular color — no dye required.

    In the first published study to find evidence of "natural re-pigmentation,"(Opens in a new tab) researchers at Columbia University set out to create a computer model of how hair graying happens with age and in response to stressful events. First they identified 323 proteins that tell us whether a hair was gray, white, or colored at any point in its history. Then they snipped colored and gray hairs from 14 participants who listed and rated the stressfulness of their life over the past year. We know that there's a connection between graying and high stress; you only have to look at the hair of ex-presidents who don't dye it(Opens in a new tab) to see that in action.

    What we didn't suspect is that the reverse may also be true; that de-stressing events can bring the color back to those exhausted fibers. That's what the study found when it matched the protein history of the hairs (which grow at a pretty reliable one centimeter per month) with the history of their owners: some normal-colored hairs had actually been gray in the past year, but went back to normal when life stress was low.

    "I was not surprised by any of the stressors that correspond with graying; I was surprised to see how strong of an impact a vacation had on the reversal of graying," says Ayelet Rosenberg, lead author on the study. "One participant went on just a 2-week trip, and amazingly enough, five of their hairs regained color afterwards."

    Examples of dramatic reversals in hair color across the body, in the Columbia study. Credit: elife sciences

    Before the battered tourism industry celebrates this news, however, there's a lot still to nail down about the science of hair graying. More studies are needed to find out if this re-coloring effect ever happens over the age of 40 (it didn't for the few over-40s in the Columbia study). Still, if we can replicate these results soon — and the pandemic has given us one heck of a stressful event to map on hair around the world — the implications are huge.

    Why? Because we're told constantly that too much stress is a killer, and we should combat it with mindfulness, exercise, sleep, and the rest of the familiar list. But the danger feels distant because it's internal. Nobody wakes up in the morning and sees their calcified arteries staring back in the mirror. When it comes to new gray hairs, though, many of us seem to zero in like Terminators.

    And just this one time, human vanity might save us — because in our future world of preventative medicine, new gray hairs are actually worth telling your doctor about.

    "Hair is unique, because it is a visible change that also indicates changes happening on a cellular level," Rosenberg says. "The ideal outcome would be for doctors to one day be able to use hair pigment as a diagnostic tool, using our method. If somebody did have a sudden onset of gray hairs, it would be worth looking at their stress levels that correspond to that point in their life.


    "When you see it with your own eyes, I think people are more likely to care, and possibly make a change."

    SEE ALSO: 6 of the best hair styling tools: Dyson Airwrap, Revlon One-Step, and more

    The stem cell solution

    So what is actually going on at a cellular level when our hair regains color? Simple: Stem cells swinging into action. The raw material of the growing human body that can make any kind of cell required, stem cells are increasingly used in a wide range of medical therapies. We're in a golden age of stem cell research; just in the past few weeks we learned about how they could eradicate HIV(Opens in a new tab), make brain tumors stop growing(Opens in a new tab), and can be injected to successfully treat heart and lung disease(Opens in a new tab) in mice.

    But hair is a relatively new area of focus for stem cell research, partly because we had no idea they were powerful enough to re-color our grays. Melanocytes are the type of stem cell that live in our hair follicles. Some studies suggest there is a limited reservoir of melanocytes up there; when they're done, so is your hair color. But this is hardly settled science.

    "The depletion of stem cells would imply that the graying is permanent, but this has only been shown in mice," Rosenberg says. Melanocytes may also be replenished by mystery visitors, she adds: "Some transient stem cells may come in, which could possibly be responsible for the re-pigmentation that we are seeing here." Say it with me now: More study needed.

    So fear not, forty-something millennials on the cusp of a graying decade. Science may soon find that extreme commitment to de-stressing can reverse hair color loss at any age — something that would be a lot easier to prove if those Buddhist monks that experimenters love to study (whose brains appear to be kept significantly younger by meditation(Opens in a new tab)) would just stop shaving their heads.

    Or we may develop new stem cell therapies to restore our melanocytes in later life. Such a therapy may be open to abuse if younger grayhairs use it to mask the stress indicators they should be telling their doctors about in the first place. But either way, our new awareness of our hair's ability to recolor itself may be a blow to the $23 billion global hair color industry (which was projected to grow to $36 billion by 2027(Opens in a new tab) until this news came along).

    In the meantime, the Columbia study stands among many that are blaring the same message loud and clear: We are too stressed out, and it is neither optimal for employers nor employees. Another eye-opening piece of research from earlier this year found that a five-hour workday was optimal for productivity(Opens in a new tab); anything longer than that, and you start to burn people out in the long run. There are trade-offs, of course; CEOs who made the switch noted a decline in the cohesion of workplace culture. But the stress caused by longer days may matter more, particularly if that workplace culture starts seeing hair color decline as a sign of burning out.

    One day soon, then, perhaps your manager will inspect your head for signs of stress. More than five new gray hairs, and it's off on mandatory vacation you go. Give our regards to your melanocytes.

  • Space enthusiast uses TikTok to teach others about the moon, Mars, and beyond

    Space enthusiast uses TikTok to teach others about the moon, Mars, and beyond

    Put yourself in the mind of a 20-year-old college sophomore who's just finished finals. You're ecstatic, probably exhausted, and still bouncing from all the finals-week caffeine. It's also the first summer post-pandemic, when everyone's finally able to leave the house and get up to whatever they want. You probably have some big plans: parties, beach vacations, maybe an international trip? Or what about a deep-sea mission to replicate what it's like to conduct research in space?


    That's what Alyssa Carson, the 20-year-old who first made headlines as the "youngest astronaut in training(Opens in a new tab)" — and the first person to visit every NASA visitor center in existence by the age of 13 — has in her sights for her summer break. She's coordinating a group of six other women, ranging from a current high school sophomore to scientists with years of research experience, for an expedition that will include scuba diving to simulate space walks and staying as isolated as possible. Carson says they're dubbing it the Harmonia research expedition. "Harmonia is the daughter of Poseidon," Carson explains. "We're doing three weeks at sea as a kind of space analog, pretty much pretending like we're on a space mission." They plan to publish their research afterward, and, of course, she'll be sharing her experience with her more than 483,000 Instagram followers and 115,000 TikTok followers.

    The independent project is a collaboration with 69-year-old sailor and adventurer Reid Stowe, who will be handling the sailing part of the trip and who holds the record for the longest sea excursion without stopping or restocking (1,152 days). But that's hardly the only thing Carson is up to, also juggling studies as an astrobiology major at the Florida Institute of Technology, her internship in Global Space Strategic Partnerships (basically space international relations) at Jacobs Engineering Group in Florida, and her summer space trainings, like a microgravity simulation flight later this month. No big deal.

    Carson's ultimate goal is to become an astronaut and set foot on Mars. She's been sharing her journey with half a million followers online, an audience of other young people like herself, as well as space enthusiasts and other "science communicators." As a young woman in an older, male-centered field, Carson is encouraging others like her to realize the expansive opportunities and career paths the space field offers. She wants to make it clear that space isn't just a childhood dream.

    But it can start in childhood, and for Carson it did: She decided she wanted to go to space at just three years old. She witnessed three shuttle launches by the time she was 13, attended every NASA space camp (the first to do so) before the age of 19, and was selected as an ambassador and spokesperson for Mars One(Opens in a new tab), a mission and education campaign to put humans on Mars by 2030. She's the youngest person (only 16 at the time) to graduate from the Advance Space Academy(Opens in a new tab) and the youngest to be accepted and graduate from the Advanced PoSSUM Space Academy(Opens in a new tab), which trains and accredits young people to be astronauts. She's published a podcast(Opens in a new tab), been highlighted in a TEDTalk(Opens in a new tab) series, written a book(Opens in a new tab), and started a foundation(Opens in a new tab) to help fund other young people's dreams of going to space.

    View this post on Instagram
    (Opens in a new tab)

    A post shared by Alyssa Carson (@nasablueberry)(Opens in a new tab)

    Thinking back, Carson can't pinpoint exactly what started her interest in space at that young age — she tells the story of walking into her father's room one night, in true kid fashion, to tell him she was going to be an astronaut. It could have started with the beloved children's show (and current social media love child(Opens in a new tab)) The Backyardigans, in which four animal friends share imaginary adventures in their backyards. "I had a poster of one of their 'Mission to Mars' episodes," Carson recalls. "No one in my family has any sort of background in space or science, really. So it was definitely out of the blue for me to be talking about it."

    What was initially seen as a childlike dream turned into an all-consuming goal. With the support of her father, Carson enrolled in her first space camp at seven years old and eventually attended an international immersion school to broaden her studies. She also picked up three more languages, Spanish, French, and Russian, which would come in handy during both her international relations internship and her worldwide public speaking engagements. She often missed her classes for space training, but made it work.

    The pandemic threw off Carson's jam-packed summers and space training plans for a bit. And, while previously she'd mostly shared her experiences, accomplishments, and space lessons to followers on her Instagram @nasablueberry(Opens in a new tab), Carson was pulled (along with the rest of us) into the world of TikTok to fill her time away from training and public speaking. "I was pretty much bored and didn't have too much else to do. It was fun to be able to teach people in that way on TikTok." She's taken a break from TikTok while she's been back in school, but plans to start posting more frequently again.

    Like many other space and science educators using social media, Carson's use of viral trends(Opens in a new tab) to make lessons more interesting caught people's attention mid-pandemic, with her content reaching peak views in May and June of last year. Her other videos about general space history and just pure fun facts (like how to go to the bathroom in space) also accumulated millions of views.

    @nasablueberry1(Opens in a new tab)

    The more you know #spacebathroom(Opens in a new tab) #learnontiktok(Opens in a new tab) #tiktokpartner(Opens in a new tab) #spacethings(Opens in a new tab) #greenscreen(Opens in a new tab)

    ♬ original sound - Alyssa Carson(Opens in a new tab)

    But her videos and Instagram posts are more than just fun. They showcase the need for diversity in the space field, whether that's by highlighting famous women in the industry or calling for more representation(Opens in a new tab) of minority groups in STEM fields.

    @nasablueberry1(Opens in a new tab)

    Comment some powerful women in you know #greenscreen(Opens in a new tab) #femaleempowerment(Opens in a new tab) #womeninstem(Opens in a new tab) #learnontiktok(Opens in a new tab) #tiktokpartner(Opens in a new tab)

    ♬ original sound - Alyssa Carson(Opens in a new tab)

    She also wants to clear up misconceptions with her videos. "I definitely saw a gap between what's actually happening in space and what the general public thinks is happening in space," Carson said. She reflects on how many people asked her what her future plans were now that "NASA is closed" (a misconception after the agency retired a few space programs) or asking how space research has any impact on our day-to-day lives. "I think that space is very hard to relate to for every person— we're not very connected to it. You can go your whole life never thinking about space or it affecting you," Carson says.

    This thinking results in two things: making careers in the space field feel like far-reaching dreams, especially for young people, women, and people of color, and implying that space research is superfluous. "It's like when people say, 'Why go to Mars when we have so many problems here on earth?' The connection between space and earth is huge... We have so many technologies, so many simple devices that we are able to use every day, like whether it's handheld vacuums(Opens in a new tab) or headphones(Opens in a new tab),' she explains. Carson even addressed this frequently asked question in one of her TikTok videos(Opens in a new tab), explaining to a commenter that space research creates new technologies, jobs, and has a much bigger impact than many realize.

    Not everyone can go to space. But Carson hopes that her online content is encouraging young people to entertain the idea that space is relevant, accessible, and a forum for creative thinking. "It's just an avenue to really push us outside of our normal thinking. So we can come up with new things because we're thinking about the problem in a different way," she says.

    "I don't think I'm going to ever be done learning, because it's never-ending."

    The message is reaching more and more people as she continues her path as a public speaker and prepares to take her women-led team out to sea. "Through Instagram and a lot of platforms, I was able to talk to and connect with kids from all over the world and be able to teach them the things I've learned about space and science," Carson says. "Space and science is always changing... We are about to have an explosion of stuff happening in space... I don't think I'm going to ever be done learning, because it's never-ending." She wants to make sure people her age don't miss out on a thing.

    Last weekend, Carson got to fulfill another one of her dreams and fly with the U.S. Air Force's Thunderbirds — fighter pilot jets that reach mind-boggling speeds. Carson has already received her private pilot's license and is considering more flying training, but the Thunderbirds offered her the closest she's gotten to feeling what it's like to be shot into space, sending her through the air at 575 miles per hour. While it was physically exhausting, Carson said it was also one of the coolest things she's ever done.

    And it reiterated a larger point she hopes to make through all of her content: There is not one single way to get to space. Carson says joining the U.S. Air Force is a traditional path for many astronauts — more than half(Opens in a new tab) of the current space-bound astronauts are active military members — and she got to share that option with her followers. But there are many more paths. "There's so many unique careers you can go into, you don't even have to be good at math and science to work in space. There's other people who are just as important... journalists, psychologists, spacesuit designers," she says. "I want to teach kids that it is a reasonable dream to go after" — however they do it — "so space is just less intimidating."

    Related Video: Mars will kill you in ways you'd never imagine

  • Best audio workout apps for training without a screen

    Best audio workout apps for training without a screen

    Since your gym is still closed and will be for a while, the world is now your workout space. But for those venturing outside or training in the living room, staring at a screen is the last thing you want after a day of, well, staring at a screen.


    That's why we recommend audio fitness apps. Ethan Agarwal, CEO and founder of audio workout app Aaptiv (full disclosure: I'm an active user on a 259-day streak) wrote in an email that "Zoom fatigue" is real, and that "working out without looking at a screen is such a relief."

    SEE ALSO: The absolute best workout apps for exercising at home

    During the pandemic, fitness junkies are going to have to get creative when it comes to weight training, yoga, and other forms of exercise. So grab your headphones and take a listen.

    Aaptiv(Opens in a new tab) ($14.99/ month or $99/year)

    While Aaptiv offers treadmill and stair climber classes perfect for the gym, its collections of pilates, yoga, strength training, and even audio coaching for runs and walks, are perfect for working out from home.

    No dumbbells? You can still do strength training with a bodyweight workout.

    Beyond training, Aaptiv offers sleep and meditation classes for this high-stress time. And its stretching options are stellar.

    These aren't the usual hamstring and quad stretches. There are entire 20-minute classes just for stretching your wrists and ankles. For neck and back pain, the stretches actually focus specific muscles, instead of just suggesting you do neck rolls.

    Before quarantine I was an occasional yoga practitioner. But after going through Aaptiv's vast yoga collection (with filters for difficulty level and type of yoga), I'm practicing a few times a week.

    TRX(Opens in a new tab) (Free for 1 year with equipment purchase or free 3-month trial. Usually $4.99/month or $39.99/year.)

    TRX requires some equipment, but once you have a suspension trainer attached to a door or beam, you can download the app. The suspension straps have handles and aren't cheap — the starter pack is $185 on sale(Opens in a new tab) — but it's a one-time purchase that could be worth it if you use them enough.

    Instead of doing planks or pushups on the floor, a TRX workout literally keeps you suspended. As you lean back and pull against the straps to almost float above the ground, your workout gets harder and harder, and your form really matters.

    There are video guides to help you learn how to set up the straps correctly. After getting comfortable setting them up, you can move on to audio workouts.

    If you don't want to use an app, the TRX Live website(Opens in a new tab) has livestreamed classes at no charge for anyone to check out.

    YouTube - Eyes-free Fitness(Opens in a new tab) (free)

    As this web series creator, Mel Scott, explains, "working out while breaking your neck to see the screen is not a great idea." So take a listen to these low-impact audio workouts. Scott, who is blind(Opens in a new tab), created the workouts for her community and beyond and brought in instructors and coaches to guide the audio workouts.

    Many of the free YouTube videos are geared toward older athletes, with a focus on less aggressive exercises (you won't find too many jumping jacks or burpees) and stretching.

    It's truly audio only — there are no video instructions. So listen carefully when the instructor explains how to use a chair to stretch your calves.

    Auro(Opens in a new tab) ($11.99/month or $94.99/year or $399.99 for a lifetime membership)

    Similar to Aaptiv, Auro involves a trainer coaching you through your ear buds.

    You can set up and stick with customized workout plans and pick a personal trainer to guide you through workouts. The app includes both at-home options like yoga and strength training along with outdoor running workouts.

    Auro gives you weekly goals to conquer and a dashboard to see your progress. Based out of London, the app is offering 50-percent discounts(Opens in a new tab) to the UK's National Health Service workers.

    Training during a pandemic. Credit: auro

    Peloton(Opens in a new tab) ($12.99/month or included with bicycle)

    You don't need to spend $2,245 on a Peloton bike to use the app. It includes classes on meditation, strength training, yoga, stretching, and more. And, yes, there are cycling classes.

    The running classes are great if you need to get outside. They provide guidance on pacing, splits, and staying focused, and you can send metrics straight to your Apple Watch.

    The app also lets you train with other Peloton app users, set goals, and track your progress.

    Yoga Wake Up(Opens in a new tab) (free 2-week trial, then $9.99/month or $53.99/year or $34.99/half-year)

    View this post on Instagram
    (opens in a new tab) (Opens in a new tab)

    So maybe you didn't make it to the park, but you can still make your morning count with yoga.

    You don't even have to get out of bed. Instead of an alarm clock, you can set this app to wake you (there's even a snooze button) and start your day by breathing and gently moving your body. Since it's an audio app, you don't have to stare at a screen first thing in the morning.

    You can also use the app at the end of the day to ease yourself to sleep with meditations and calming sounds.

    While the app focuses on incorporating yoga and meditation into your waking-up or powering-down routines, there are options for an afternoon or midday yoga workout. And they're all 20 minutes or less.

  • The 11 best and funniest tweets of the week

    The 11 best and funniest tweets of the week

    What else is there to say but there's another week on the books. It's gone, it's over, never to be seen again.


    So that's something.

    Anyway, we collected the best tweets from this week because you deserve to enjoy them. And because we do it every week. (It's just what we do here.) Please sit back, relax, and enjoy the 11 best tweets of the week.

    1. Oh man, the internet eventually comes for everyone I guess.

    2. Sometimes that scammer gets more than they bargained for.

    3. The deranged pink sauce became a thing because we need some real sauce innovation in America. Get on it, people. We should be working overtime on such an important task.

    4. Considering everything, it all feels kind of pointless, doesn't it?

    SEE ALSO: The 8 best and funniest tweets of the week

    5. This is important advice. The opener is great, too! They're there for a reason. Shut your trap and listen to the good music.

    6. It happens to the best of us.

    7. This is some iconic stuff. The kind of thing that makes you a legend.

    8. This is possible. We can make this our (spooky) reality. We just need to do it quickly.

    9. This is a perfect name for such a vessel.

    10. Yeah...yeah. This isn't really all that funny. It's just pretty true.

    11. And finally, this.

  • Lil Nas X, still Very Online, stays unbothered by conservative outrage

    Lil Nas X, still Very Online, stays unbothered by conservative outrage

    Lil Nas X is handling the conservative backlash to his latest music video by leaning into it.


    The artist and professional troll enraged the right with his new music video "Montero (Call Me By Your Name)," a queer retelling of humanity's banishment from the Garden of Eden.

    In this version, abundant with references to Greek mythology and biblical symbolism, Lil Nas X has an illicit affair with a demonic serpentine creature, is judged before a denim-clad angelic council, and then accepts his fate by descending into Hell via pole dance. There, he gives the king of the dead a steamy lap dance before snapping the devil's neck and claiming the throne for himself.

    It's a story of sin, banishment, and redemption, but the redemption is granted by Lil Nas X himself rather than an omnipotent deity who dictates right and wrong. Why adhere to the rules of morality if you can't exist freely?

    "In life, we hide the parts of ourselves we don't want the world to see," Lil Nas X narrates. "We lock them away, we tell them, 'No,' we banish them. But here, we don't. Welcome to Montero."

    Christianity has demonized homosexuality for centuries, and the shock from the religious right over the music video echoes its own message. Lil Nas X told Time(Opens in a new tab) that he grew up in a "pretty religious kind of home" that was "fear-based," and hoped the video would reach LGBTQ youth who are still in the church.

    "Even as a little child, I was really scared of every single mistake I may or may not have made," he told Time. "I want kids growing up feeling these feelings, knowing they're a part of the LGBTQ community, to feel like they're OK and they don't have to hate themselves."

    Though the video was widely praised as a radical acceptance of queerness, the religious right was outraged by the "demonic" imagery and homoeroticism much like the satanic panic in past decades. To promote the song, Lil Nas X also launched(Opens in a new tab) a limited collection (only 666 pairs were released) of "Satan Shoes" in collaboration with art collective MSCHF, which featured an inverted cross, a bronze pentagram, and a drop of human blood. They sold out within minutes. Nike, which manufactured the shoe's base, responded by suing MSCHF(Opens in a new tab).

    Outspoken conservative figures voiced their disapproval, and particularly religious ones — who seemed to miss the entire plot of the video — claimed Lil Nas X would face punishment upon Judgment Day. But Lil Nas X isn't backing down, and rather than handle the controversy with grace, is instead feeding into it with memes and snarky responses. He even co-opted the infamous apology video format to further promote(Opens in a new tab) the song.

    Instead of an apology tour, though, Lil Nas X is embracing the controversy. In the last few days, the artist has been exceedingly online to respond to moralistic critics. He reminded followers that despite his popularity among children for the viral hit "Old Town Road," he isn't responsible(Opens in a new tab) for the media children consume. He responded to a fire and brimstone sermon denouncing "Montero" as "wicked" by claiming he'd sample it(Opens in a new tab). He told South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem to do her job instead of tweet about shoes when she expressed her anger at the song, and quoted the lyrics back at her(Opens in a new tab) when she cited a Bible verse. When gun enthusiast Kaitlin Bennett tweeted about him, Lil Nas X brought up the ongoing rumor(Opens in a new tab) that she allegedly defecated on herself at a college party. His responses to attacks were personal and anything but gracious, but they did go viral, further promoting the video.

    Lil Nas X has mastered the art of going viral, and knows that fanning the flames only garners more attention. By feuding with the critics, he's drawing more views to the video and entertaining his followers in the process. He even joked about dropping a collection of Chick-fil-A themed shoes to "even the score" — the franchise is notoriously homophobic(Opens in a new tab).

    While seemingly unbothered, the artist did admit in a tweet(Opens in a new tab) on Monday that the backlash took "an emotional toll" on his well-being. Still, his responses throughout the weekend following the music video's drop is a lesson in relevance: Taking the high road may make you morally superior, but dancing with the devil will make you viral.