Where to shop in Chiang Mai   

With its colorful market maze, international stores and glistening shopping malls, Chiang Mai is a shopaholic's paradise. As Thailand's second largest city, Chiang Mai comes second only to Bangkok as the country's haven for both keen shoppers and souvenir buyers.

Modernity meets tradition in Chiang Mai, making the most culturally significant region in northern Thailand. As a city of contrasts, Chiang Mai boasts a variety of artifacts, ranging from traditional handmade objects and cottage crafts to international labels and imitation brand products.
While you can find great deals at any of the city's picturesque markets, you might also find yourself wasting your money if you don't know how to haggle or identify what is worth buying. That is why you must be prepared before you venture into the world of shopping in Chiang Mai.
Craft and Walking Street Markets
The city is home to over 15 markets, which are the ideal place to soak in the local culture while you either purchase souvenirs, grab a snack or even treat yourself to a massage. Chang Khlan Road might be an ordinary street full of shops and restaurant by day, but when the night comes, a famous night market brings the place to life. The Night Bazaar is also one of Chiang Mai's top attractions.
From handicrafts, clothing, high-tech items and all sorts of knickknacks, the Night Market is the perfect place to go on a shopping spree and put your haggling skills to the test.
San Kamphaeng, Chaing Mai's Handicraft Scene
Once the capital city of the country, Thailand is a treasure trove of culture, history and tradition, and as such, it houses the most significant traditional handicrafts of country. The main area to purchase these culturally significant souvenirs from is San Kamphaeng road, the city's famous traditional arts and crafts highway. Here is a great place to take in the local culture and find a huge variety of products and antiques, including lacquer-ware, celadon, silk and textiles, woodcarving, silverware, umbrellas, and a whole range of hill tribe arts and crafts.
Over the course of the last few decades, San Kamphaeng's has become Thailand's main Thai silk centre, and its prominence is such that it has attracted to the region relevant figures such as Lady Diana.
If you're looking for those brightly-colored hand-painted umbrellas the region is famous for, head to Bo Sang Handicraft Center. Known as the umbrella village, Bo Sang's local artisans have been manufacturing them for at least 200 years and they will paint beautiful designs on items you choose.
Shopping Centers
Street markets might be the city's heart and soul, but when it comes to convenience and escaping warm and humid weather, shopping malls are the place to be. Although Chiang Mai is not nearly as mall-obsessed as Bangkok is, the city's shopping malls are highly valued amongst locals. What's not to love about a single complex that offers essential products, clothes, cinema, massage and restaurants? The most popular shopping centers are Kad Suan Kaew and Central Airport Plaza.
Kad Suan Kaew is a massive shopping mall that houses an endless selection of shops. Kad means market in Thai, and inside this mall is like a Thai market, open until 9pm and air-conditioned. Located outside the center on a road lined by great cafes, the Kad Suan Kaew features department stores offering western sized clothes. Since this is more of a local's mall, it's a great place to enjoy some traditional Thai food and a real Thai massage.
Central Airport Plaza might be harder to reach - as it is located near the airport - yet many opt for it due to its modern cinema.
Shopping tips
Don't forget it is customary to haggle in Thailand so after you ask for the price, suggest something around half of that. Always barter unless there is a sign saying “fixed price.” Carry cash in your wallet as you will need it to purchase goods from the market. While bartering is not accepted in the malls, they do take most debit and credit cards, which can be increasingly convenient from time to time.


Best hair care for straight hair  
Of all the issues facing women in today's busy societies, one that is always foremost in their minds is hair care. It's bad enough that hair styles come in such a variety of shapes and sizes, many ladies choose to completely alter their look on a regular basis.
The good news is that for every particular style of hair, there's always a corresponding series of tips. So let's take a look at one of the most prevalent hairstyles: straight hair.
Keeping straight hair manageably straight can often seem like an uphill battle. How many times have you returned from a visit to your favourite hairdressers, admiring your latest sleek, straight hair makeover in the mirror – only for the style to fall apart. There can be several reasons for this to happen. The weather can sometimes be responsible for hair disasters. Excessive humidity in the atmosphere, right down to full-on rain downpours, can play havoc with the style that seemed so perfect a matter of hours beforehand.
Removing knots
Here is what you should know about hair care for straight hair. First of all, it is all too easy for straight hair to gather unseemly waves and kinks if it is left unattended. What you want to do in the first instance is ensure that your hair is tangle free – especially if there is any likelihood of it getting wet (when those pesky.
Tugs and tangles can easily be removed with some careful brushing. It's important not to be overly zealous while trying to remove these knots, as attacking the tugs with the brush will cause damage to the hair. Instead, use calm even strokes, going back to the problem areas and repeating the brushing process until the hair resorts to its natural straightness.
WashingThe next part of the process is to ensure that your street hair is rinse thoroughly. Afterwards, select a shampoo and pour a small portion into your hand – about the size of a coin. Now vigorously rub your palms into one another so you build up a considerable lather. Next, you work this shampoo into your hair, using your fingertips to really get the foam right into your scalp. This is important because you must ensure all your hair receives treatment, down to the roots. Also, avoid piling the hair up on top of your head.
A common question asked about straight hair care is how often to apply shampoo? While it may seem tempting to wash on a daily basis, it is not necessary to perform the task so frequently. Every second day will suffice, or even a couple of times a week.
Another important tip is not to scrub your scalp if your hair is at all oily, is this will exacerbate the condition.
After shampooing it is important to apply a good conditioner. This will ensure that you hair maintains a healthy sheen, as well as making it far easier to untangle. Use a wide-tooth comb to rinse out the conditioner as you shower.
When finally drying your hair, avoid rubbing too hard. Instead, use more of a ‘blotting' technique, as it is far better for your hair to remove the dampness slowly and surely. Once you have performed a cursory drying out, comb the hair again to ensure the shape is maintained.
Maintaining that straight style
The most effective way to ensure your straight hairstyle remains intact is to visit a good stylist every 4 to 6 weeks. As straight hair is especially prone to split ends, your stylist will ensure that these are tackled regularly.
Caring for short hair  
It is only natural to let hair grow, and for many women, possessing long, flowing locks is an expression of their confidence and femininity. Of course, hairstyles are also a potent method of expressing anyone's individuality, so there are absolutely no rules about what should or should not be acceptable, especially in terms of length. The key issue with anyone's hairstyle should be: what makes me feel comfortable?
In this respect it is important not to be drawn in by what styles some TV personality or fashion magazine columnist might decide are ‘in' or ‘cool'. Many people fall into the trap of making decisions based on magazine photographs, or looks that they have spotted in the movies. While there is nothing wrong with cutting out your favourite photograph from a magazine, before taking it with you to the beauty salon and requesting ‘make me look like this model'. But you should be aware that many of the aforementioned media images are airbrushed to within an inch of their lives.
Short hair can be a striking option. Possessing neat, cropped hair will often make the wearer stand out from the crowd, as well as drawing attention to their face rather than any billowing tresses. One of the added bonuses of short haircuts is that they saw convenient when it comes to maintaining. If you have a night out or a business appointment you wish to look your best for, you here can be washed and staled very quickly. When it comes to long hot summer days, you will feel the benefit of having short hair in order to keep you cool (both in temperature and fashion terms!)
It goes without saying that short hair is much easier to look after Dan Long here. However it does require a certain amount of tender loving care to keep it looking as healthy and clean as possible.
First of all, it is still important to have short hair regularly attended to. You should aim to visit your salon around once a month, or even every three weeks if possible. This is because the shorter the hairstyle, the quickly it will grow out of itself. Regular attention will ensure that the shape of you hair is maintained and will also prevent the onset of split ends.
With those dreaded split ends, the only effective cure is to cut them off. Don't be duped by those advertisements that show their hair products miraculously causing split ends to melt together again. A good stylist trimming you hair above the split line will be subjecting your style to minimal stress – far better than any products, chemicals or even hair curling or ironing.
Short hair should be conditioned at least once a week. The best way to do this is to massage your scalp with warmed oil, such as coconut or almond. Once your hair has been thoroughly oiled, you want to immerse a towel into heated water, thoroughly wring it out, and then wrap it around you hair. Keep this in place for about 20 minutes. Afterwards remove the towel, before washing your hair. This will ensure your short hair achieves a wonderful sheen.
The next step is to use a mild shampoo, one with a low pH. This will nourish your short hair and also eliminate dandruff. Never comb wet, short hair, as wet hair is more elastic than dry, and therefore prone to breaking. Allow your style to dry naturally, before using a wide-tooth comb.
Best eye care  

Looking after your eyesight is amongst the most crucial aspects of personal health care. These precious organs enable you to interact with the world, so here is what you should be doing to keep them in peak condition.
The link between what you put inside your stomach and how your eyes perform may not seem too obvious. Nevertheless dieting as an integral part of eye care. Amongst the best types of food to eat to ensure your eyes remain in excellent condition are fruit and vegetables.
The old adage about eating carrots to enable you to see in the dark might seem like a piece of folklore. However there is a lot of truth in the potency of these little vegetables. Carrots are root vegetables that come pre-packaged with a lot of natural substances excellent for your eyes, such as beta carotene. This is very helpful because it is an anti-oxidant that has the effect of considerably reducing your risk of macular degeneration.
Other vegetables that you should be looking out for include Brussels sprouts, peppers and broccoli. The reason why these vegetables are all terrific for eye care is because they are bursting with Vitamin C. They might not be the greatest-tasting vegetables when eaten on their own, but next time you are preparing a main course, it might be useful to consider trying out any of these as a side dish - for their medicinal qualities! If you can't bear the thought of tucking into Brussels sprouts, then why not chop them up as an additive for hummus, or yoghurt?
Sardines have long been regarded as good for your eyes. The reason for this is the fact they contain fats called omega-3. Unlike the nastier fats that are the nemesis of dieticians and weight control nutritionists across the globe, these fats are good for your body. Amongst the key properties they possess is the fact they protect the little blood vessels in your eyes.
Spinach was certainly good enough for Popeye, but he had good practical reasons for relishing this stuff! Along with sweet potatoes, they contain the same beta carotene you find in carrots. Spinach also has Vitamin C, as well as other natural ingredients, such as zeaxanthin and lutein. The best way to enjoy sweet potatoes is to slice them up into chips and gently stir-fry them with olive oil. Spinach can be added, either as a side dish, or a dip.
Eye care
When looking after your eyes directly, the things that have to be considered include avoiding damaging the surfaces. If you are a contact lens wearer, then undoubtedly your optician will have advised you not to wear these for periods exceeding 19 hours or so. Not only would this cause discomfort to your eyes, it can lead to permanent site damage.
The same precaution can be stated about wearing spectacles. If you have visited to your local multiplexed to watch a 3-D film, then only where the special 3-D glasses for the duration of the future never for any period of time afterwards. Also remember not to stare at your mobile phone too early in the morning, or late at night. When you look at object very close vs very far away you use different body muscles so it's good to look at distant objects like trees untill your eyes completely focus on all the detail and that might take a few mins, or even 30 mins. The Y-thai team do this and we have 20/20 vision, yeah, even after writing and posting so much with computers hehe.


Caring for wavy hair  
Of all the hairstyle variations, it often seems that possessing naturally wavy or curly hair can pose more than its fair share of problems. As well as being incredibly uncooperative, when the hair is also thick it becomes even more of a nightmare to deal with. So, if you're fed up with friends joking that you look as if you've just jammed your finger into an electric plug point, what can be done about it?!
The good news it is a relatively straightforward process to alter those annoyingly frizzy curls or unkempt kinks into a style that will bring you nothing but complements. All it takes is some careful hair preparation.
The very first thing that you should do is find yourself a good hairstylist. A great way to get introduced to one is through personal recommendation. Even if you don't have the benefit of firsthand experience, most high-street hairdressers will be able to offer excellent service – otherwise they wouldn't be able to stay in business! Naturally the best friends or colleagues to approach are those with curly hair, as they may well have found a particularly excellent exponent.
Ask your stylist if they are familiar with the technique known as ‘twist cutting'. This is particularly effective for curly or wavy hair. While paying a visit to a salon specializing in this particular form of cutting may be slightly more expensive than a normal cut, the old adage that you get what you pay for has never been more appropriate.
When it comes to looking after your own curly hair between visits to the twist cutting stylist, it is important to pay attention to the fact you do not have to shampoo every single day. However, it would be sensible to condition your hair every time you happen to shower. In choosing a combination of conditioner and shampoo, it is important to choose products that leave your hair feeling good to yourself. At the end of the day you do not wish to have hair that, once it has washed, still feels as if there is product left in it; or worse still, feels dry even when it shouldn't be.
A potent weapon in the arsenal of caring for wavy hair is one of the most simple commodities anyone has around the house. Cold water. By washing your wavy hair in cold water it will end up looking shinier. In addition, moisture will be locked in and perhaps most importantly of all, the unseemly ‘frizz effect' will be considerably reduced.
One of the commonest causes of hair turning ‘frizzy' is when it is brushed out while dry. So unless you happen to be drying your hair with a blast from the hairdryer to try and get it straight, you should be using your fingers like a comb to run through the dry hair.
Another consideration with wavy or curly hair is never to use too much hair product. All you need is a minimal amount of styling gel or mousse. Apply a small ‘coin-sized' blob to your palm, rub your palms together, then knead through your hair, distributing thus evenly. Use this the moment you come out of your shower when you hear it's still wet. This will ensure that moisture gets trapped and that the end result is lustrous, moisture-rich curls.
Dental care – best toothbrush techniques  
Maintaining a perfectly white smile can seem an uphill struggle at times, especially with the way we are bombarded with choices of rich food and drink. But as long as you appreciate the steps you can take to look after your teeth, it should be a relatively painless experience.
You should be brushing twice a day. Any less than this will allow bacteria to form inside your mouth, eventually leading to the plaque which can have such a destructive effect on your teeth enamel. Any more than this will actually have a detrimental effect as the protective layer of enamel coating the teeth will be effectively worn away.
Any dentist will concur that brushing your teeth thoroughly is by far the most effective way of keeping them healthy. Like any other household instrument that is regularly used, it is important to consider the shelf life of your toothbrush. Once any toothbrush has been employed for any length of time, the bristles will begin to wilt under the pressure. For a toothbrush that is months old, its bristles will no longer stand proud. Once they buckle, they will be much less effective at reaching into the awkward recesses of your teeth.
It is advisable to brush your teeth for a certain period. This should certainly not be any less than two minutes. As you attend to your teeth, you may well have a certain pattern of movement that you adhere to. Many people commence at the rear of the month, getting into those thick molars. Working your way forward you should be paying close attention to the incisors, or front teeth. Remember to cover every possible surface of the teeth. It is especially important to deal with the inside of the teeth, even if these aren't actually going to be exposed for scrutiny by the outside world at any point. Plaque can gather at any portion of your teeth, but especially round about cracks or partitions where your toothbrush is less likely to delve than open spaces.
More and more people are choosing the option of the electric toothbrush. This is not necessarily just down to convenience. Electric shavers are far more effective at attacking the bacteria that exists inside your mouth. As the plastic bristles rotate, driven by the electrical charge, the vigorous friction will really help to remove foreign particles from the surface of your teeth and gums.
You should also treat an electric toothbrush as you would any other kind. Its head is not going to last for ever, so you should be aiming to change every two to three months. As well as the bristles themselves losing their strength, the more often you use them inside your mouth, the more bacteria they'll harbour. If this isn't checked, the bacteria will simply be transferred from the toothbrush head into your mouth.
When it comes to the actual brushing motion, whether you are using the traditional brush or an electric one, the optimum method is to place the instrument at a 45° angle against your gums. No move it around in a circular, grinding motion, rather than the enthusiastic but far less effective ‘backwards and forwards' technique that is universally popular. Also learn to grip as if you were holding a pencil – again, this ensures that you don't employ too much pressure as you scrub.
Eating sensibly during pregnancy  

Those nine months of pregnancy are obviously fraught times for women. But there are many activities you can indulge in, in order to make the experience pleasant, and more importantly, as healthy as possible. After all, as well as your own wellbeing, your primary concern will be that your baby is given the best possible start.
Deciding what to eat during this period is one of the most crucial decisions to take. The good news is that just because you happen to be pregnant is no reason why making diet choices should be too onerous. Even if you find out you are to be the mother of twins or triplets, you can still choose from a variety of foods in order that you (and your unborn) get access to a full range of delicious nutrients.
A common question asked by expectant mothers is what foods are safest for me to eat? Fruit and vegetables are a great choice. As well as being relatively inexpensive, these are packed full of minerals, fibre and vitamins. You should aim to be eating at least five portions of fruit and vegetables on a daily basis, during the pregnancy. The best aspect of eating these is the fact there are now so many to choose from, all of which can be easily prepared in various ways.
You should also be considering eating a variety of starchy foods. This includes rice, pasta, potatoes and bread. Foodstuffs such as these are excellent sources of vitamins, fibre and energy. In order to maintain a healthy balanced diet during the nine months, it is important to inject your daily intake with these, along with the fruit and vegetables mentioned. When eating bread it is preferable that you choose the wholegrain varieties where possible. Brown rice or pasta is also much higher in fibre.
Your diet should also include a range of protein sources. The best examples of this are eggs, beans, fresh fish, tinned fish, and meat. In the case of the latter, always opt for lean meat. When it comes to preparing these dishes, it is important to ensure that chicken, pork, or even burgers or sausages, are thoroughly cooked through.
The old adage that states everything in moderation is acceptable certainly applies to pregnancy eating. It is only natural that you will feel like supplementing your diet of fruit, vegetables, starchy food and proteins with a rationed amount of drinks or foods that are relatively high in their content of fat and sugar. The key aspect of this, of course, is rationing. While there is no need to be completely abstinent, and it is still okay to enjoy the occasional sugary fizzy drink, crisps, or biscuits, it is important not to over-indulge.
Many women develop all manner of cravings during this period, but what should always be lurking at the back of your mind is the fact that eating too much sugary food can lead to you putting on too much weight. While this is not ideal at the best of times, during pregnancy it can have adverse effects on your health by increasing your blood pressure. Where your baby's health is concerned this should obviously be avoided. 
Enjoy detergent food  

Considering the calorific qualities of your daily meals is only one aspect that should always be under your firm attention. It is one thing keeping an eye on how what you eat will affect your weight, as well as your overall health. But another thing to look out for is what effect anything you ingest will be having on your oral hygiene.
When it comes to keeping your teeth white and healthy-looking, there are certain foods that are far better than others. These can loosely be termed ‘detergent foods'. The number one quality these should possess is that they should be crisp and firm.
The obvious advantage of this of oral hygiene is that unlike brushing teeth that can occasionally be forgotten, we all have to eat every day. All that rubbing up and down of your teeth with a brush can eventually seem like a bit of a chore. But choosing foods with proactive cleaning properties can be exciting. As you get into detergent foods you'll build up your own favourites – foods that you don't just enjoy for their taste, but also for their nutritional and bacteria-slaying properties!
Foodstuffs falling into this category are excellent for giving your teeth a rigorous workout, basically by the force of friction. In much the same way as your toothbrush will rub against the enamel, as well as scraping along the gums, these foods will help to remove plaque or bacteria by applying pressure. A lot of fruits and vegetables seem almost bespoke-designed to achieve the optimum detergent effect. If these were to be arranged into any sort of league table, then those examples that would constantly be battling for the premiership trophy would include celery, apples and raw carrots.
As well as forming the components of healthy salads, these are all relatively cheap foodstuffs. They are also terrific for children because it is actually pleasant and satisfying to really crunch into something with your teeth. Youngsters also go for brightly-coloured items, so will enthusiastically tuck into chopped uncooked carrots, or crimson apples.
Another excellent example of a 'detergent' food is popcorn. It is definitely one of life's pleasures to sit around on a lazy afternoon absorbing an entertaining family film. This experience is topped by having a large bowl of popcorn within easy delving reach of each participant. The popcorn itself is very good at getting right into the recesses of your teeth. Even better, popcorn has a porous quality that allows it to soak up saliva- and with that, unwelcome bacteria.
When it comes to planning your meals, it makes sense to ensure that you leave at least one type of detergent food to the very end. So once you have had your fill of courses that have left you with rich sauces or juices, simply pick up an apple and crunch away. This is a far more recommended way to conclude any feast than gorging on teeth-staining, sugar-infused chocolate mints, or pungent cheeses that are already riddled with their own bacteria colonies.


Effective washing for curly hair  
A large part of maintaining curly hair is down to how you go about washing it. Styling hair like this is tricky enough, but before you get that far you should really follow a particular course of action.
The easiest way to achieve this is to set yourself a list of steps. The first is straightforward. When you come out of a shower, resist the urge to rub your hair vigorously with a towel. Instead, what you really want to do is to dab it gently, in a ‘blotting' motion. This will allow the towel to absorb moisture, rather than you going for an impatient all-out-assault to get that hair dried! Energetic rubbing of wet hair will only cause damage and this will eventually lead to that nemesis of all curly haired individuals – frizzy hair!
Of course, if you're hair is on the coarse side, it will require more focused attention. What you want to look out for is a silicone sealant that you can apply to the length of your hair prior to styling, or using any products. As you introduce this sealant, you should avoid applying it to the hair nearest your scalp. The good news is that there are various options available on the shelves of both supermarkets and more highly-specialised salons.
For fine curly hair, a slightly different course of action is required. Rather than a sealant, you should employ a silicone spray, and apply the minimal amounts to the length of your hair. As before, you want to ensure this gets into you hair thoroughly, but avoid the hair growing nearest to your scalp.
Lightweight styling gels are available if you only require minimal hold. If you require a firmer, longer-lasting effect with your products, there are many styling liquids and cream gels on the market. If you are in any doubt about which products to invest in, simply ask the assistant at the counter who will be able to provide you with all the advice you require.
To consider is what to do as you hear begins to dry. Allowing this to occur naturally is by far the best option. Alternatively, if you are pressed for time, using a blow-dryer is perfectly acceptable, provided you have it set at low heat and blast, and use a diffuser attachment. Controlling the force of the blast that is being directed at your hair will allow your curls to better maintain their consistency. As you work through your hair, squeeze the curls gently, lifting it at the roots as you proceed. A good tip here is to apply a styling cream in the first instance.
Food to keep your teeth clean  

There are many foodstuffs on the market that are highly recommended by specialists for their abilities to help maintain healthy teeth. Some are perhaps fairly obvious; others less so.

Herbal tea
Overall, tea is generally regarded as being unsuitable for cleaning teeth, as it possesses chemicals like tannin that will have an adverse affect on tooth colour. But there are many natural teas where the opposite is the effect. Herbal teas, which are infused, are actually a terrific way to keep your teeth in tip-top condition. Green tea has, amongst other ingredients, polyphenol antioxidant plant compounds. These come with a powerful set of cleaning resources. They will help to reduce plaque, as well as combating gum disease and reducing cavities.
Dairy products
Believe it or not, cheese actually contains some natural cavity-fighting agents. It also contains a range of vitamins that will help to preserve the integrity of the enamel, keeping your teeth strong. Cheese possesses phosphate and calcium, two substances that balance your mouth's natural pH. It also not only preserves but also rebuilds damaged tooth enamel. Because it produces a lot of saliva, it assists in the way your mouth combats bacterial infection- killing the very bacteria that cause gum disease, tooth decay and cavities to form.
Dairy foodstuffs like yoghurt and milk are excellent for your dental hygiene because of their low acidity. This means that wearing of the teeth is kept to a minimum. There is also little in the way of decay-promoting sugar present.
Milk is one of the best sources of calcium there is; and this element is the main component of your bones and teeth.
Fruit and vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are often, by their very nature, excellent for keeping our teeth cleaned. The obvious ones are apples, but as long as the natural consistency of these products is relatively strong, then they are always recommended for keeping your teeth well-maintained. Eating something like raw carrots, or indeed any fruit or vegetable where are really have to crunch into the flesh, will provide a naturally abrasive action. The friction from this will keep your teeth scrubbed.
These foodstuffs are also a tremendous source of vitamins. Kiwi fruits, apples and strawberries all possess Vitamin C. In chemical terms, this is the element that binds cells together. When Vitamin C is neglected, you're gum cells can break down, rendering them susceptible to disease. Vitamin A is to be found ina diverse range of foods, notably carrots, sweet potatoes, broccoli and pumpkins. This vitamin is vital for the formation of tooth enamel.
The key point is that any vegetable tat is crunchy and requires a certain degree of effort to actually chew in order to break it down will help clean your gums. For this reason, raw vegetables are always much better for keeping your teeth and gums clean. As well as having a solid consistency that actually feels better when biting down into the flesh, their natural flavours remain sealed in. Once vegetables begin to get cooked there is always the very real danger of them being overcooked, when they will not only lose their teeth-protecting qualities, they'll also taste a lot worse!


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