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New, Reviews and Buzz around NukuNuku and our Haramakis.....
This winter I have been raving about wearing a haramaki. It's a traditional Japanese cotton product that is worn around the belly and it has many benefits. Energetically it supports the kidneys which is essential for maintaining warmth- if you're like me and don't like wearing too many bulky layers it's a great way of keeping comfortable in the cold weather. For women it helps blood flow to the uterus, which is helpful for menstrual issues, pregnancy and postnatally. It can even be worn at night to ensure you drift away to a good night's sleep.
A Japanese client of mine told me that when she was growing up builders wore haramakis to support their backs- generally in an uninspiring shade of beige. Thankfully they can now be sourced in a range of beautiful colours and sumptuous fabrics such as wool and angora as well as cotton.
Haramakis can be bought from good health food shops - and I am a particular fan of www.nukunuku.co.uk for their wide range. I'd love to hear how you find wearing yours.
by Kate Codrington at Biodynamic Massage, 5th February 2013
I have been keeping warm this winter with the help of a hara warmer. Known as a haramaki, this brilliant invention is a tube of jersey which encloses the body from navel to thigh and actually feels like an all day hug.
It's a thin layer of clothing that you can wear under or over your clothes, and when I put it on I had that wonderful melting relaxation feeling you get when you're enfolded into someone's arms. Ahhh. In fact I love it so much I feel a tad twitchy when it's in the wash, it has become a transitional winter object! I can feel my lower back relax, my abdomen relax and soften too and these have obvious benefits for my posture and digestion.
Now, I am tall and chilly and often have a drafty gap between my jeans and t-shirt and this perfectly fits the bill as a draft excluder. AND it encases my muffin tops if you know what I mean.
I also wear it over the top of my yoga clothes so I don't have to meet my belly in quite the same way when I am doing inversions.
Hara Warmers are great for pregnancy when you can use them to fill in the gap your bump creates or as a cover-up when breast feeding and are available for men and children too.
In Chinese medicine, the kidneys are the holder of the ancestral energy or essence. My acupuncture colleague Mary Hurley tells me that nourishing and warming the kidneys can be a great help in maintaining our well being, especially during pregnancy.
Even though the snow has gone, I’m keeping it on because it just feels so good!
18th July 2012
New stockist: Stomawise
10th May 2012
Now for sale on Stomawise the internet based support network for people who have undergone any of the following Surgical Procedures: ileostomy, colostomy or urostomy surgery, and have a bag attached to their abdomen used to collect waste from the body.
by Nancy Prime 2nd April 2012
Latest Japanese trend keeping Brits warm this winter
Small, family company in Brighton - Nukunuku is bringing a traditional Japanese body warmer called a "haramaki" to the shivering British public....
Win 'Haramakis' from Nuku Nuku
Haramakis from Hove-based company NukuNuku are an innovative and stylish creation. NukuNuku means warm and cosy in Japanese and Haramaki translates into bellywrap - a band of material wrapped around your middle. Also called 'waist warmers' and 'belly bands', these body warmers have been worn for centuries in Japan. They're great for when you're playing sports such as yoga and cycling; they can also benefit pregnant and breast-feeding mums; those who feel the cold, and those wanting to banish back fat and muffin tops from sight!
January 31st, 2012
FEELING THE COLD? - KEEP TOASTY AND SUPPORT YOUR OSTOMY BAGS & STOMAL HERNIAS WITH A HARAMAKI (from Liz Prosser of The Bowel Movement)
Haramaki was the name originally given to a form of abdominal armour, wrapped around the body by the ancient Samurai warriors, they protected the warriors from harm and kept the warriors warm, fighting in the cold mountains of Northern Japan. These same warriors noted a remarkable improvement in their health after wearing the armour for some time. The Japanese soon developed a much more comfortable Haramaki, worn commonly today for health and warmth. It is difficult to argue with the benefits of such an ancient tradition! Tests have also shown that if the abdomen and back are kept warm, the whole body increases in temperature. (see heat pic). The concept of wearing Haramaki was also recommended in the Mail on Sunday's You magazine in September of 2011.
Apart from being a necessary Japanese wardrobe accessory, Haramakis are now made in Brighton by a local manufacturer, nukunuku, and are great for ostomate wear. Not only do they disguise the bag, they provide both support and gentle stomal hernia protection.
On the websites: www.bellybandsrus.co.uk, and www.nukunuku.co.uk you can choose from a variety of colours, materials and sizes available in both adult and children's styles and sizes. Wearing Nukunuku's haramakis over time, you will find that they wash well and keep their elasticity. Of course, haramaki's are mainly for warmth and do a great job of filling the gap between tops and trousers/skirts. They are also worn as maternity bands supporting the "bump", fantastic for outdoor sports people, especially runners and cyclists. There is also a special offer and competition to win a Haramaki on www.laterlife.co.uk (an excellent site with loads of special offers for over 50s).
We are also very grateful to Nukunuku who has kindly donated fabric for the Gastronaut's own belly bands!!!
Laura of All the All Tall Things came up with this brilliant line in her blog today.....
It's Fridaaaaaay! Time to get waisted.
Top won't stretch far enough? Maybe you need a Haramaki.
No, I'm not drunk already. Haramaki is a Japanese word that translates as belly (hara) wrap (maki) - a band of material wrapped around your middle. Worn originally by Japanese Samurai warriors, these handy little elasticated waistbands are now enjoying something of a renaissance. When the lovely Catherine of UK supplier Nukunuku got in touch to tell me about them, I decided I had to give one a whirl. (Nukunuku means "warm and cosy". Cute or what? Just saying the word makes me feel snug). Apparently they're quite popular amongst her tall customers, who can never seem to get their t-shirts to meet their jeans. Sigh. Been there.
They're useful for layering under a shrunken top… as if clothes weren't short enough to start with, my washing machine is always determined to make things even shorter. If you're pregnant, slip one of these over the top of your Topshop skinnies and no one will guess that your flies have been undone for the past nine months. They're also perfect for hiding that mince-pie and mulled-wine induced muffin top. Me likey.
Laura of Keeping Healthy Getting Stylish reviews our Haramakis....
Hi everyone, hope your having a good week! I'm very excited to be reviewing a really unusual product for you today. I was contacted by NukuNuku to see if I would like to try out a Haramaki. Of course I had no idea what a Haramaki was so I looked on the website and was intrigued!
A Haramaki (translated as 'belly wrap' in Japanese) is a band of material that you wear around your waist. The wraps are popular in Japan having first been worn by Samurai under their armour. It is claimed that wearing a Haramaki can help to spread warmth through your body from your core, aid digestion and relieve menstrual cramps as well as being a practical piece of clothing useful for avoiding 'builders bum' syndrome, keeping you covered while practicing yoga or gardening and of course it would be useful for supporting the belly during pregnancy.
As someone who really feels the cold and suffers from poor circulation I was interested to see if it could help me stay warm.
I was sent a basic blue Haramaki to try out. I received the small size which fitted me comfortably, however I would have preferred it to be a little tighter and more snug so I would chose the XS size in future (for reference I have a 27 inch waist and 33 inch hips)
I wore the Haramaki under my clothing as shown in the images. I wasn't sure how comfortable it would be but after the first day I was hooked! I wore it every day until I realised I really should wash it!
I found that it made me feel 'snug' and nicely supported. It worked especially well under tighter fitting trousers as a layer between them and my skin and gave a nice clean line under my clothing. I'm not sure to what extent it improved my circulation but it really did make me feel snug and warm, even more than if I was wearing a vest top. In fact this would be perfect for wearing instead of a vest to keep warm if you were going out and wearing a strapless top or something with an unusual neckline. It would also act in a similar way to shaping under ware if you got a suitable size that pulled you in!
It did remind me a bit of the 'girdles' my Nana used to wear and the infamous 'Bridget Jones' pants - but a lot more stylish of course! The website has a range of different colours and sizes of Haramaki in stock. A Haramaki costs £14 and postage within the UK is just £1.
I have to say I was sceptical at first but I have been completely won over. I actually missed wearing it today while it was in the wash! I think £14 is a pretty reasonable cost when you compare it to other good quality under ware and vests, and the cheap shipping is excellent too.
I think these would make really unique and unusual Christmas gifts for someone open minded who suffers from the cold! I also think a Haramaki could be good for people who have loose skin on their stomach from weight loss or pregnancy - I have some loose skin and I felt really well supported and comfortable.
I know I'll be wearing this a lot, especially once I start spending more time down the allotment on my knees planting veggies!
5th December 2011
James Gisby, Acupuncturist looks at the Traditional Chinese Medicine reasons to keep your Dan Tien Energy Centre and Tummy wrapped up....
In Japan this energetic area of the dan tian is called the hara. Zen Buddhists might use the hara as a place to focus attention during zazen (zen meditation) and the samurai cultivated his hara for strength of body, mind and spirit. I recently came across a traditional Japanese piece of clothing, worn around the hara, called a haramaki. The haramaki is currently enjoying a resurgence in Japan and has just started to be sold here in the UK at www.NuKuNuku.co.uk. Founder Catherine Brown discovered the haramaki whilst living in Japan. The haramaki is held to have the following benefits:
- Keeping the hara warm keeps the whole body warm
- Eases menstrual cramps
- May aid digestion and blood circulation
- Adds an interesting layer to your clothes and keeps you warm without bulky layers
- Provides coverage during activities such as yoga and cycling
- Covers the above-mentioned muffin top (exposed midriff)
- Hides builders bum
- Offers warmth and support in pregnancy
- Helps breast-feeding mum's limit exposure when lifting tops.
I've been wearing a haramaki for the last week. It fits unobtrusively under clothing and can be worn by both men and women, even in pregnancy. I found it to be surprisingly comfortable, giving a nice warm feeling over the low abdomen, reminding me of the awareness and warmth of the dan tian I used to have when I practiced a lot of tai chi and qigong. I walk a lot and, with our first wintry weather, found it to be a welcome extra layer of clothing. I used to have an eccentric great-uncle who cut the arms off all of his shirts and jumpers. I seem to have inherited some of his clothes claustrophobia, preferring to buy short sleeved shirts. I find a vest too constrictive and the haramaki to be preferable. My only worry with it is having to explain it at A and E if I have some sort of accident, but other than that, I can warmly recommend the haramaki.