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Shop Japan



By Global Business Development Manager, Nancy Evans

Our Global Business Development Manager, Nancy Evans, provides an insight to The Healthy Back Bag in Japan

It all started as if a dream.  After all, who wouldn’t want to see their brand showcased on the world stage?

And it was never a matter of IF we would open a Healthy Back Bag monobrand shop, it was merely a matter of Where and When;  just the ‘small’ details.  As such, we consider it an honour that the launch of the 1st HBB monobrand shop(s) occurred in Japan, a country the world looks to for trend, style and unique finds.

By definition ‘mono’ is a combining form meaning ‘alone’, ‘single’, ‘one’.  So a mono retail store has just one brand.  Typically, this would be a stand alone operation but in Japan, the rules are different and instead, the shop exists within a department store.

Each location and site selection were carefully evaluated and tested as temporary pop-up shops.  After favourable results and negotiation for shop space, the build-outs quickly morphed into our current line-up of monobrand shops;

Tokyu Plaza Ginza

9 August 2018. A bustling tourist epi-center, Ginza is the most famous upmarket shopping area, dining and entertainment district within the Tokyo prefecture.

Tokyu Kichijouji

23 August 2018.  Home to affluent younger families in their 30’s & 40’s, Kichijouji is a popular commercial shopping and leisure area.

Marui Kitasenju

20 June 2019.  Adjacent to the 3rd busiest station in the Tokyo metro network, Kitasenju sits outside of the city center and offers up a suburban, traditional and slower paced environment.

So, what are the hallmarks of a monobrand shop?

  • First & foremost, it’s a destination.
  • It displays a perfectly curated representation of the range.
  • It’s the first place to launch new seasonal items, limited editions and offer exclusive promotions.
  • Its Visual Merchandising is best in class.
  • It offers up a platform for testing new and creative ideas.
  • It provides the best service from designated and knowledgeable HBB staff.

In a culture where authenticity, storytelling and thoughtful design reign supreme, it’s no wonder Japan truly has the street cred when it comes to validating a brand particularly in the lifestyle space.

To everyone in Japan we wish to extend our sincere appreciation and say Arigatou Gozaimasu for welcoming the Healthy Back Bag brand into your elite retail community.

Who says dreams can’t become reality?


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Working in a Familiar Environment

Working in a Familiar Environment

What a difference a month makes…

Just a few weeks ago we were in the office complaining about the grey skies and constant rain, now we are all working from home, grappling with new ways of communicating remotely with our colleagues and considering ourselves lucky to have a bit of outdoor exercise and a trip to the supermarket.

These sudden changes to our lives can of course create higher levels of anxiety and stress than we are used to. We are concerned about the health of our family and friends, worried for ourselves and the bombardment of real and fake news stories from around the world creates an existential threat which very few of us have experienced before.

Here at the Healthy Back Bag Company, health matters are at the core of our business and we take our own and others mental health very seriously, particularly those already living with conditions like anxiety and OCD. For some of us, life goes on as normal, the lack of a pint at the local pub being the main concern however for many, the changes to our lives can make existing mental health problems worse.


So how can we protect our mental health?

The World Health Organisation recently released advice on protecting your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak. They suggest:

  • Avoid watching or reading or listening to news that could cause you feel anxious or distressed
  • Seek information mainly to take practical steps to protect your plans and protect yourself and loved ones
  • Seek information updates at specific times

So far so good. But what are the practical ways in which we can all manage this whilst working from home without the office routine and colleagues to talk to?

So what can be done?

We conducted a very casual (and very virtual) poll around our office. These are some of the ways we’re keeping ourselves healthy in mind and body:

Coping with ‘Stay at Home’ life outside of work:

  • Gin featured fairly highly on our lists! Not that we are all raging alcoholics but 5pm G&T’s on the balcony with housemates does wonders for marking the end to a working day.
  • Manage your news. Switch off all those newsfeeds and only access information when you need it. Alternatively, subscribe to which gives you a break from covid chat or at least a positive spin on it.
  • Hold Zoom parties on a Saturday night! (downloadable from Arrange to share a glass of wine and catch up with friends. Does wonders for morale.
  • Get out in the garden – being out in it, tidying it up and enjoying this best time of the year as everything bursts into bud is really grounding
  • Cook some of those recipes you’ve been meaning to try out for ages
  • Use your evenings to catch up with family over FaceTime or Skype or pick up the landline and give them an old fashioned telephone call!
  • Learn a new skill, learn how to draw or play guitar
  • Sort out all those photographs at last

Working from home:

  • Keep a routine – get up at a normal time
  • Start the day with some yoga – sun salutations before work are a great mood booster
  • Exercise regularly – make the most of your outdoor daily exercise and download home workout apps for regular workouts in the living room (see links below)
  • Use the extra time to have a long shower, enjoy a morning coffee outside in the sunshine or take a proper lunchbreak
  • If you share a house, consider swapping round workstations every hour so you don’t end up sitting on the sofa all day
  • Stick to a healthy eating plan. Stock up on fresh food and embark on that health kick you always promised yourself. No snacking!
  • Open a window, enjoy the cleaner air

And last but not least,

Think about all those new tech skills you’ll have learnt by the end of it all and try and remember this is only temporary!


Useful websites

World Health Organisation


Mental Health UK

BBC tips for working at home

Women’s Health 28 top workout apps to use while social distancing


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Fiona Ingham – All About Red


Written by Fiona Ingham

The latest from our House of Colour blogger Fiona Ingham

Red will take centre stage for Winter 2020, according to the recent Paris fashion shows, but in reality, red is always in fashion. Diane Vreeland, legendary editor of Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, expressed her enthusiasm for this colour stating ‘I have spent my life searching for the perfect red.’ Sometimes I wonder if I’m red’s second greatest fan, but I guess Coco Chanel, Christian Louboutin and Armani are way ahead of me!

Blue is the colour most loved globally but red tops the league for visibility, excitement and extreme reaction. Teams wearing red win more. Red Sale signs make us buy. Red energises.

As a Colour Analyst I find that many clients fear wearing red, but when encouraged to try it, they love it, as these emails following colour analysis show:
‘I’ve bought a red coat. I get loads of compliments. You’ve given me a new lease of life! PS I’ve got on my poppy red lipstick too, in my pyjamas!’

‘I’m wearing my geranium red top this morning and already have had three compliments!’

Times have changed

In the past a long-lasting red dye was difficult to acquire so the colour was worn by only the rich and those considered of high status; royalty, nobility, the church. The introduction of synthetic dyes in the 19 Century made red available to all, but associations of authority, and confidence still cling to it.

I try hard not to sigh when people tell me ‘Red only looks good on people with dark hair’ or ‘Red only looks good on blondes’ ‘Red heads can’t wear red’. All so wrong! Everyone can wear red. We just need to find the correct hues for our skin tones.

Seeing Red

Primary red can be worn whatever your colouring. Yes really! The reason is quite logical. It sits right at the centre of the colour wheel and works for each colour season. You will see it called middle red, poppy or scarlet. The very different colourings of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex both looked stunning wearing it recently.

If you have warm based skin tones (Autumns and Springs) tomato, geranium and orange reds are for you. Or go richer to terracotta or rust, brighter to orange and tangerine or deeper to chestnut.
If that range doesn’t appeal, consider the blue based equivalents which work for cool based skin tones (Winters and Summers) Think delicious cherry, carmine, berry, raspberry or go deeper into burgundy, plum, fig.

If you’re tempted by red but eschew a head to toe Lady in Red look, then go for accents : knee or ankle boots, loafers, a cashmere scarf, gloves, belt or bag, A red necklace enlivens any neutral coloured dress and a red top works under every neutral jacket.

Don’t rush in

Maybe just dip your toe in the water with a fashionable red lip which adds glamour to that LBD or for me, as an Autumn my LND (little navy dress).

Whether you want to look cool or hot, choose red. Banish the Blues and brighten everyone’s day with a splash of red. Cheers!

Fiona Ingham


Consistent holder of the House of Colour Star Consultant award each year since 1991 plus the new Double and Triple Star Consultant award for 2019. Winner of the Business Development Award and Team Productivity Award.also a 2017 Livewire Innovation and Excellence Award.

Colour Analysis can be a Private Individual Session (two hours) with a group of friends or joining a group (both half day). If you did your Colours some time ago Fiona recommends the Advanced Colour session for further inspiration.

Contact details:  07791 507534

Get your red on with our range of Red Healthy Back Bags here

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Is size everything?

Is size everything?


It’s a question that we hear all too often in the HBB office, but if you’re sensible the size of your bag REALLY DOES MATTER!

We live in a world where bigger is always seen as better. From some of our most famous landmarks, to the world’s biggest (insert any food item here)! This isn’t always the case. What’s more important is ratio. Someone who is taller, won’t always have the strength of someone shorter. And of course looking at the following chart it is very clear to see that the Marmoset is clearly the most intelligent creature alive…



We have all seen people lugging around enormous satchels, straining under the huge weight of an overladen bag you could fit your whole family in. More often than not, these bags are not even full, and can cause long term damage due to the weight imbalance.

Here at HBB we like to suggest to our customers that you really think about the size of bag that is right for your body – after all it is something that you carry around every day so it really is important it doesn’t injure you!


All our Healthy Back Bags are carefully designed and tested to work with a range of body types and sizes. Starting from our 1 litre capacity Small Bagletts, right up to our 20 litre Big Bags, there is a size out there for everyone. With an adjustable strap, each bag can be adjusted to fit your unique size perfectly and spread the weight ergonomically across your body. Take a look at our guide below for more pointers on your perfect size:


Clips to the D ring inside any larger bag, or worn separately. Long detachable strap for use across the body or round the waist. Perfect for minimal essentials.
Dimensions: 20.5×11.5x9cm
Capacity 1 litre


A larger version of our baglett, for when a little more capacity is required.
Dimensions: 25x14x11cm
Capacity: 1.5 litres


The most popular size for everyday use. Holds all daily essentials, plus diary, gloves, mini umbrella. Replaces the medium to large handbag.
Dimensions: 43x23x15cm
Capacity: 6 Litres


If you normally carry quite a large, well-stocked bag, this is the one to choose. Also good for day trips and sightseeing.
Dimensions: 49x28x18cm
Capacity: 9 Litres


Extremely roomy. Great as an overnight bag, or carry-on luggage, also good for the gym, day-trips, the beach and expeditions.
Dimensions: 54x33x21cm
Capacity: 20 Litres

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Colour Analysis – To do or not to do?

Colour Analysis – To do or not to do?

Written by Fiona Ingham

You probably already have a strong sense of which colours suit you best but if, like us, you really want to understand exactly which shades perfectly suit your skin tone, which are your best neutrals and what exactly are your ‘Wow!’ colours, then colour analysis could be for you.
House of Colour consultant and HBB blogger, Fiona Ingham answers some of our questions:

So why should you invest in colour analysis?

Firstly, because whatever your age or gender, wearing the right colours will make you look your best, with glowing skin, fine lines and dark circles reduced and the jawline defined. Your eye colour will look brighter and natural hair colour be enhanced. Clients are astonished to see the difference when draped in flattering colours.

How does it work?

Colour analysis discovers your best neutrals as a great basis to the wardrobe. For some this will be pure white through all the greys to charcoal and black, for me it’s cream through the beiges, camels, coffees to darkest chocolate. There is a specific navy in each section. You’ll be introduced to your bright colours too. It’s so easy to be adventurous and wear a splash of fuchsia or buttercup yellow if you’re certain it looks good. There’s no need to get rid of all ‘wrong’ colours, although some clients do, but you can just make a start by getting great colours around your face, maybe as a scarf or top.

What’s the benefit?

In the 90’s the desire to be simply the best, to Dress for Success was a major impetus in ‘doing Colours’ but now clients want a more sustainable wardrobe, which meets the #30wears challenge. They aim to buy smart and less, eliminating mistake buys, wearing everything and so trying to avoid contributing to global textile waste.
Hannah Betts of the Sunday Times Style Magazine discovered that jewel winter colours suited her best and wrote that wearing our right colours “gives a kind of superpower and visual charisma”

Clients report that they feel more confident and save time, stress and of course money by knowing exactly what works and disregarding the rest.

You use a ‘seasonal’ colour analysis system, how does this work?

The colour wheel is divided into four sections, given the seasons names as a shorthand description. You discover which section your colouring fits into. If your skin undertone, eyes and hair colour need warm colours you will be an Autumn or Spring. Winters and Summers colours are cool. There always are surprises so it’s wise not to self-diagnose or make assumptions in advance!

We work with specific contrasts from 144 precision dyed drapes. You can wear almost every colour but will discover the right hue. Make- up colours, including a range of lipstick colours are chosen. This is often a revelation for clients who suddenly discover a lipstick they love.

You don’t simply learn your season, but the best colours within that season, aka your Wow colours! You take away a leather wallet with colour swatches to make colour matching easy and an individualised booklet to ensure that you shop effectively.

Fiona Ingham


Consistent holder of the House of Colour Star Consultant award each year since 1991 plus the new Double and Triple Star Consultant award for 2019. Winner of the Business Development Award and Team Productivity Award.also a 2017 Livewire Innovation and Excellence Award.

Colour Analysis can be a Private Individual Session (two hours) with a group of friends or joining a group (both half day). If you did your Colours some time ago Fiona recommends the Advanced Colour session for further inspiration.

Contact details:  07791 507534

Here are some of our favourite HBB’s sorted
into Fiona’s colour seasons:


No products were found matching your selection.

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5 Health and Fitness Apps for 2020

Health and fitness

5 Health and fitness apps for 2020

So you’ve launched into 2020, and your goal is better health and fitness. You’re hitting the gym, you’re eating healthy, you triumphantly say no to that mid-week drink  “new year new me” right? but now it’s February. It’s still dark when you leave work and your wine and takeaways night is creeping earlier and earlier in the week.

We know what its like, we’re there too.

So obviously, we look to the never-ending abyss that is the app store (it’s 2020, there’s an app for everything) to guide us on our healthy living awakening that we committed to on December 31st at 11:59:55. Luckily for you, we’ve done the research so you don’t have to and we present our 5 favourite health and fitness apps for 2020!


COST: £7.99/month or £49.99/year

Launched in 2019, by Cat Forrest, former international GB high jumper, and entrepreneur Jason Goodman, the team have worked with Facebook to create tailored fitness plans with audio coaching to help you work towards your specific goals along with a leader board which ensures a social experience too. Available on the Apple Watch and community based.



Created by the people behind Dry January, this app tracks dry days, unit calories and money saved by reducing your alcohol intake and claims to help you ‘change your relationship with alcohol’. Plans can be chosen from a general reduction in alcohol units to completely kicking the booze. You can even click through and buy your alcohol free drinks donating a percentage of the purchase price to the organisation in the process giving you a nice alcohol free glow.


COST: £47/month with a 14 day free trial and discounts for longer contracts

Calorie led weight loss programmes and tailored fitness plans aimed at helping create healthier habits. The app includes a food log, calorie and activity tracker to help you stay within a daily calorie budget and encourage you to exercise with a personal coach. Helene in the office has lost 1 stone in just over 1 month by using the app just to count calories.

My Fitness Pal


MyFitnessPal is a free calorie and macro counting app with an easy to use food logging feature with a vast database of foods and supermarket brands and you can use the built in barcode scanner. Set up a custom plan and link it to your Withings or FitBit fitness platforms and as you add the food you eat, the app will deduct them from your exercise calories burnt.


COST: £21.49/month after free trial

YogaGlo is great for yoga beginners and can be tailored towards a number of goals including general strength and fitness, stress reduction or improved sleep. The 7-Day Free Trial enables you to build your own practice and choose your instructor giving you a chance to try different classes and the ability to create highly customisable sessions before committing. The app links with the Apple Health App and also work with the Apple watch

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International Happiness Day

International Happiness Day: 20th March 2019

Happiness is contagious!

This International Day of Happiness, March 20th, we hope you choose to indulge in all things that bring a smile to your face! For some of you, it could be spending time with family, eating a delicious meal surrounded by friends, or going on a walk on your lunch break. How you choose to celebrate is completely up to you! 

In light of the occasion, we thought it would be fun to research colour psychology in order to find out which colours make us feel happiest. It is important to note that your feelings about colour are often deeply personal and rooted in your own experience or culture. The research below is based on different interpretations from around the world. 

But before we dive in, it might be helpful to better define what colour psychology is. It is the study of colour in relation to human behaviour. It aims to determine how colour effects our day to day decisions. This ranges from which brands you align yourself with to how certain colours can effect you physiologically. While happiness can be for some, a state of calm and serenity for others it may be a feeling of stimulation or reenergising. We’ve compiled a list to suit all of those and in between!

White: a sense of calm Black: a sense of power from within Grey: a sense of peace and composure Red: a sense of excitement and stimulation Orange: a sense of enthusiasm and optimism  Yellow: a sense of happiness and energy Green: a sense of grounding and revitalisation Blue: a sense of serenity and tranquility Purple: a sense of spirituality and wisdom Brown: a sense of stability and security Pink: a sense of inspiration and renewal

We would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on the research and your own personal relationship to these colours!

White: a sense of calm


Black: a sense of power from within


Grey: a sense of peace and composure


Red: a sense of excitement and stimulation


Orange: a sense of enthusiasm and optimism


Yellow: a sense of happiness and energy


Green: a sense of grounding and revitalisation


Blue: a sense of serenity and tranquility


Purple: a sense of spirituality and wisdom


Pink: a sense of inspiration and renewal


Brown: a sense of stability and security