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Patagonia Created a Bikini That Won't Slip Off

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As all bikini-wearers know, the two-piece bathing suit is a risky choice for active sports. The pesky fabric has a tendency to fall out of place, or—if you're doing something like tubing or water skiing—fall off completely. Before you opt for a one piece, know that Patagonia has found a possible solution for your bikini woes. They've created a special bathing suit that won't slip off, no matter how many waves hit you.

The product is the result of Patagonia talking with female surfers, who say they prefer bikinis because it makes them feel freer in the water.

“I don’t see a lot of people trying to create women’s products that are specifically built for sport and that’s discouraging. In surfing, all the swimwear innovation is happening on the men’s side of the business,” Laura Kinman, Patagonia’s product line director of women’s sportswear and surfing, tells Outside.

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In 2014, Kinman discovered a sticky fabric that gripped to skin when wet. The material has a large surface area, made up of thousands of microscopic polyester filaments that are 1/175000th the thickness of a human hair. She used them to build a few prototype bikinis and brought them to Oahu's North Shore to let the Patagonia surfing ambassadors test them out.

Although the material, called Nanogrip, feels unusual and takes a long time to dry, it was a big hit with the surfers who tried it out. Thanks to the way the material hugs the body, athletes wearing it no longer have to hold on to their suit when diving or emerging from the water.

You can find the Nanogrip top here and the bottoms here.

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This Just In
Amazon Is Rolling Out ‘Instant Pickup Stations’ In Several U.S. Cities
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Much of what you’ll find on Amazon.com can be purchased at a brick-and-mortar book shop, department store, or convenience store in your neighborhood or nearby. Part of what makes the retail site so appealing is that it gives you the option to shop online without leaving your bedroom. Now, more than two decades after its inception, Amazon has come full-circle. As Mashable reports, the tech giant is testing “Instant Pickup” stations for shoppers who can’t wait for shipping.

The new program evolved out of Amazon’s existing delivery system. The company already has lockers around the country that customers can set as their shipping address. Now Amazon Lockers near college campuses in Berkeley, California; College Park, Maryland; Columbus, Ohio; Boston, and Los Angeles are being outfitted with digital kiosks that allow visitors to pick up goods moments after they’re ordered.

To make a purchase through Instant Pickup, Prime members can browse through the products available at their closest station through the Amazon app. Inventory varies, but it typically includes most of the essentials you’d find at a convenience store like snacks, drinks, and school supplies. Tech supplies like cables and headphones are also often in stock.

After you select the item you wish to buy, a barcode will pop up in the app. Holding the barcode beneath the onsite scanner will open a locker with your purchase inside. While the transaction does require you to leave the house, it maintains one key trait of online shopping: zero human interaction. Amazon's Director of Student Programs Ripley MacDonald told Mashable that that aspect is intentional. He said, "The original concept had a desk instead of these lockers, and the feedback they [the students] gave us was 'I don't want to talk to people, I want to do it on my phone.'"

This isn’t Amazon’s first venture outside the digital sphere. In the past few years the brand has opened eight physical bookstores and plans to open five more.

Amazon shoppers who prefer the instant gratification of in-person purchases without the chit-chat at the cash register can keep an eye out for more Instant Pickup station popping up around the country. Lincoln Park, Chicago will be the experiment’s next location, followed by more throughout the year.

[h/t Mashable]

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This Just In
London's Big Ben to Cease Chiming Until 2021
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Starting in late August, one of London’s largest—and noisiest—national symbols will go silent: As BBC News reports, Big Ben (which has rung on the hour for 157 years) will cease chiming until 2021. The measure is intended to protect workers completing restoration work on both the clock and its surrounding structure.

Big Ben will still chime on New Year’s Eve, Remembrance Sunday (a UK holiday that honors veterans), and other special occasions, but its last hourly bong will sound on Monday, August 21. Meanwhile, scaffolding has already been erected around the clock tower, and repairs have begun.

The clock tower last received extensive conservation work in the early 1980s. Officials say that the clock’s hands, pendulum, and inner workings all have problems “which need to be dealt with immediately to ensure that the clock can continue to work properly,” according to Parliament’s official website.

“Surveys are still being carried out to identify the extent of the works required to the tower itself, but we have already identified areas of concern, including cracks in masonry, leaks, erosion, and severe rusting of metalwork,” officials added. “There is a risk that if not addressed as a matter of urgency, the clock may fail or [structural] problems may become acute.”

Big Ben’s clock will be dismantled piece by piece, so its four dials can be cleaned and fixed. Its faces will be temporarily covered, but an electric motor will continue to drive the clock hands so it can keep telling time. Architects also plan to modernize the clock tower by making it more energy-efficient, and adding an elevator, toilet, and kitchen.

"This essential program of works will safeguard the clock on a long-term basis, as well as protecting and preserving its home—the Elizabeth Tower," the clock's keeper Steve Jaggs told the BBC.

For the uninitiated, the name “Big Ben” is often used to describe the tower, the clock, and the bell, but it originally described the largest of the clock’s five bells, which stands more than 7 feet tall and weighs more than 14 tons. As for the clock’s surrounding tower, it was dubbed Elizabeth Tower in 2012, to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s 60-year reign.

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