Harris Poll’s 2017 EquiTrend Study shows top health brands of the year

April 19, 2017

The Harris Poll’s 29th annual EquiTrend Study reveals 2017’s strongest brands across the media, travel, financial, automotive, entertainment, retail, restaurant, technology, household and nonprofit industries, based on consumer response.

Measuring brand health over time, the EquiTrend Brand Equity Index is comprised of three factors—Familiarity, Quality and Purchase Consideration—that result in a brand equity rating for each brand. According to a Harris Poll press release, the brands ranking highest in equity receive the Harris Poll EquiTrend “Brand of the Year” award for their respective categories. This year, more than 100,000 U.S. consumers assessed more than 4,000 brands across more than 450 categories.

Here are the top-ranking brands in the health industry:

Health Insurance Brand of the Year

Blue Cross Blue Shield health insurance

  1. Blue Cross and Blue Shield
  2. Health Net
  3. Amerigroup
  4. Anthem
  5. UnitedHealthcare
Other Health Insurance brands in study ranked below category average (alphabetically): Aetna, Cigna, Coventry Health Care, Humana, Kaiser Permanente

Health Non-Profit Brand of the Year

  1. St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
  2. Shriners Hospitals for Children
  3. Make-A-Wish
  4. American Heart Association
  5. American Cancer Society
  6. American Heart Association/American Stroke Association
  7. Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C)
  8. Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation International (JDRF)
  9. American Stroke Association
  10. The Breast Cancer Research Foundation
  11. Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA)
  12. The Jimmy Fund
  13. American Diabetes Association
Other Health Non-Profit brands in study ranked below category average (alphabetically): Alzheimer’s Association, American Lung Association, Arthritis Foundation, Avon Foundation for Women, Children’s Miracle Network, Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS), LIVESTRONG, Michael J. Fox Foundation, Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA), National Kidney Foundation, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, National Stroke Association, Planned Parenthood, Susan G Komen for the Cure, World Health Organization (WHO)


Health Information Website Brand of the Year

  1. Drugs.com
  2. WebMD
  3. MayoClinic.org
  4. NIH.gov (National Institute of Health)
Other Health Information Website brands in study ranked below category average (alphabetically): CNN Health, Lifescript.com, MSN Health, Yahoo! Health


REI launches Force of Nature campaign to promote gender equality for outdoor activities

April 3, 2017

REI Force of Nature
(Photo courtesy of REI)

The following is an excerpt from an REI press release:

Outdoor co-op REI has launched a comprehensive effort to advance gender equity in the outdoors, encouraging millions of its members to embrace the outdoors as “the world’s largest level playing field.” From gear to experiences and from nonprofit partnerships to powerful women-first storytelling, Force of Nature aims to ensure that women are just as inspired and equipped as men to embrace life outside. Force of Nature features four components: a comprehensive effort to change the male-dominated imagery of people in the outdoors; a $1 million commitment in 2017 to support nonprofits that create opportunities for women in the outdoors; a stepped-up effort to develop and offer high-quality technical gear and apparel for women; and the launch of over 1,000 events designed for women, beginning May 6.

Force of Nature is a public-facing effort that builds on nearly eight decades of REI work to create more access to the outdoors for women. The co-op has a balanced leadership team. Women hold more than 40 percent of senior leadership roles, including the current chief financial officer, chief information officer, and the heads of human resources, merchandising and strategy. One third of the REI board of directors are women.

REI also published a national study commissioned to better understand the role the outdoors plays in women’s lives and how the outdoors is perceived today. The study revealed that 7 out of 10 women believe that women are under more pressure to conform than men, and that they also view the outdoors as an antidote to that pressure. Additionally, the study found that more than 85 percent of women see the outdoors as key to better physical and mental health, and overall well-being, and 73 percent say they would like to spend more time outdoors.

Changing the Male-Dominated Imagery of People Outdoors
The co-op has committed to putting women first and foremost in all of its storytelling for the remainder of 2017. The effort will “take over” REI’s digital marketing, social media content and media partnerships, and storytelling across member communications, REI Adventures, Outdoor School, REI Adventure Projects and internal communications. REI will host a film festival this fall focused on women in the outdoors, and partnered with Outside magazine to help them create their first ever all-women’s issue, due on newsstands April 11.

$1M to Support Community Organizations that Create Opportunities for Women Outdoors
As part of its annual commitment to create access to the outdoors for all, the co-op will invest over $1 million in community organizations that create more opportunities for women and girls to get outside in 2017. Roughly $500,000 will support organizations such as Camber Outdoors, GirlTrek and the YMCA’s BOLD/GOLD initiative. REI also unveiled a new $500,000 fund, available through an open call submission process, for additional organizations that create opportunity for women and girls in the outdoors. Up to $300,000 of this fund will be fueled by a custom-designed bandana, an artist collaborative T-shirt and member-exclusive REI Flash pack.

Outfitting Women for Outdoor Adventure
REI will continue to work with its partners to elevate and invest in companies that are creating the world’s best outdoor gear for women. For decades, REI has pushed the outdoor industry to put the “pink-it-and-shrink-it” philosophy aside and offer high performance women-specific outdoor gear. Women-specific product has improved dramatically, but in certain product categories, there remains a gap between the quality of high end men’s and women’s gear available. Several brands have stepped up as partners with an increased focus on world class women’s gear, particularly in women-specific fit and assortment, including Osprey, GHOST, Oiselle, Arc’teryx, Terry, Oboz, Darn Tough, Outdoor Research and prAna.

Over 1,000 Events Designed to Get Women Outside
REI opened registration to hundreds of REI Outdoor School classes and experiences across the country designed for women. On May 6, the co-op will offer a full day of Force of Nature experiences and programs hosted by its Outdoor School’s expert instructors and community partners. These events will continue throughout the summer, with more than 1,000 events, many of them happening weekly on “Force Wednesdays” in select markets.

The co-op will also host three REI Outessa retreats at breathtaking mountain settings. These immersive, three-day outdoor adventures enable women to find their outdoor community, do what they love and try something new in the country’s most beautiful outdoor playgrounds. Retreats are scheduled at Kirkwood Mountain Resort in California from July 14 to July 16, Mt. Hood in Oregon from August 18 to August 20 and Waterville Valley Resort in New Hampshire from September 22 to September 24.

REI Adventures has also launched a collection of 19 Women’s Adventures in Africa, Europe, Latin America, New Zealand and North America. These extraordinary journeys are designed specifically for all-women groups and led by female guides.

Helthee makes on-demand fitness services available in New York City

March 27, 2017

(Photo courtesy of Helthee)

Helthee, an on-demand health and fitness marketplace, has made ts services available in New York City. Helthee delivers certified, vetted, and insured fitness professionals to homes, hotels, offices, or local parks in as little as one hour.

Customers  book appointments can download Helthee app or log on to Helthee.com. Choose from a variety of workout types, desired time and location, trainer gender preference, and book in seconds. A certified, vetted and insured Helthee trainer will arrive at your home, office, hotel or local park in as little as an hour, or up to a month in advance with start times as early as 5:30 a.m. and as late as 9:30 p.m.

Helthee trainers will bring all the required equipment for your appointment. All appointments are 60 minutes and you can book single (solo), pair (two people), or small-group (three to five people). Helthee’s services are available 365 days including holidays. Helthee is currently available across all iOS & Android devices. Customers can book today and get 25 percent off their first appointment by using the promo code: SWEAT25.

FabFitFun launches on-demand video service FabFitFunTV

March 8, 2017

(Photo courtesy of FabFitFun)

FabFitFun, a leading women’s lifestyle brand, has launched FabFitFunTV, a new on-demand video service that gives members access to exclusive fitness content from well-known studios and celebrity instructors. Available only to FabFitFun members, at launch FabFitFunTV will feature video content from YogaWorks; Body by Simone; Physique 57; YAS Fitness Center; Burn 60; Christine Bullock; Step it up with Steph; Get Fit with Katie; Fit, Strong and Sexy; and FXP Fitness, according to a FabFitFun press release.

To celebrate the launch, FabFitFun will host an exclusive outdoor workout presented by Jamba Juice on April 11, 2017, on the rooftop of E.P. & L.P.  in Los Angeles. Following the workout, this invite-only event will treat guests to a champagne brunch along with a first look at new FabFitFunTV content and a brand new Jamba Juice treat.

In addition to the launch of FabFitFunTV, this week members will receive the Spring Box including the coveted “Roundie” from Gypsy 05, this season’s must have item for spring, inspired by the beauty and culture of India.

Also, for the first time ever, FabFitFun introduces Choice, allowing all members to have the opportunity to customize items in their Box. Members can choose an earring set from Luv AJ  or a cuff from Emerald Duv.

The Spring Box also features cruelty-free products by Deborah Lippmann and Dr. Brandt, and includes a RealHer Lip Kit including Liquid Lipstick, Gloss, and Liner in three shades. Beyond the variety of sought after products, the Spring Box serves as a platform for #girlpower with charity partner, More Than Me, a non-profit movement dedicated to getting girls in school.

HydroChic introduces 2017 collection of swimwear and activewear for women with special health needs

March 7, 2017

 HydroChich's 2017 collection
A model wears an ensemble from HydroChich’s 2017 collection. (Photo courtesy of HydroChic)

HydroChic, an activewear brand that serves consumers outside the traditional market, has introduced its 2017 collection. The brand offers products such as swimwear and tops with mastectomy options, figure-flattering styles that cover the arms and legs, and flexible workout wear that provides compression without restricting movement. HydroChic’s durable, stretchable fabric also protects against sun damage with UPF 50+ protection and chlorine-proof fabrics. HydroChic offers more than 100 mix and match separates in missy and plus sizes to 4X.

Click here to take a look at the collection.

1440 Multiversity, a wellness facility in Northern California, opens registration

January 10, 2017

1440 Multiversity
(Photo courtesy of 1440 Multiversity)

 1440 Multiversity, a wellness learning destination opening in May 2017, is now open for registration. Weekend and five-day immersion programs are offered at the 75-acre campus, nestled in the redwoods of Scotts Valley, California, between Santa Cruz and San Jose.  Named for the number of minutes in a day, 1440 Multiversity champions the proposition that each moment is an opportunity to live fully.

Topics at the facility include “The Neuroscience of Personal Transformation,” “Wired for Relationships,” “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain,” “The Art and Science of Meditation,” “Authentic Leadership.”

According to 1440 Multiversity, accommodations on campus include all-natural farm-to-table cuisine, daily offerings in meditation, yoga, fitness, and other classes and events before and after course sessions, as well as four miles of forest hiking trails.  The campus will also feature a new healing arts center with bodywork modalities designed for relaxation and whole-body integration, steam rooms, and an outdoor infinity edge whirlpool with an expansive view of the redwoods.

Among the notable faculty in its inaugural year are:

  • Elizabeth Gilbert (Author, “Eat Pray Love”) and Cheryl Strayed (Author, “Wild”)
  • Sharon Salzberg (Vipassana meditation teacher and author)
  • Richard Davidson, Ph.D. (Neuroscience pioneer and author of “The Emotional Life of Your Brain”)
  • Gabor Maté (Addiction and stress expert)
  • Seane Corn (Yoga teacher and activist)
  • Bruce Lipton, Ph.D. (Epigenetics expert)
  • Daniel Siegel, M.D. (Renowned psychiatrist) and Caroline S. Welch (Law, mediation, and mindfulness expert)
  • Harville Hendrix, Ph.D., and Helen LaKelly Hunt, Ph.D. (Cocreators, Imago Relationship Therapy)
  • Peter Senge (Founder, Society for Organizational Living)
  • Elaine Aron, Ph.D. (Author, “The Highly Sensitive Person”)
  • Tara Brach, Ph.D. (Author, “Radical Acceptance and True Refuge”)