INFOGRAPHIC: THINGS YOU DIDN'T KNOW ABOUT THE ROUTEMASTER BUS

Ever wondered where the Red Bus Cartridges brand name comes from? Well, it might just have something to do with the Routemaster bus that has pride of place in our Lincolnshire factory.

Find out more about the iconic London bus in the infographic below…



Remember to share your opinions over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

THE EVOLUTION OF PRINTING - THE LAST 100 YEARS

Printing has come a long way since its invention back in 200AD. Back then, woodblock printing was the only option.

Things moved forward quickly over the next 1700 years, with the introduction of Movable Type, Etching, Rotary Press & Hectograph all making their stamp, and then eventually being replaced.  However, the advances in technology and the printing innovations that have taken place over the years are really quite astonishing.

Join us as we take you back in time to look at the evolution of printing over the last 100 years…

1910 – SCREEN PRINTING
Screen printing first appeared in a recognisable form in China way back in 960AD.
However it was early in the 1910’s that printers began experimenting with photo-reactive chemicals, thus revolutionising the screen printing industry.
Modern Day Screen Printing
Technique: Screen Printing involved a blade or squeegee moving across the screen (a piece of mesh stretched over a frame) to fill open areas with ink. Blocking stencils prevented ink from reaching certain places.
Fun Fact: World Famous artist, Andy Warhol is credited for popularising Screen Printing. His iconic 1962 depiction of Marilyn Monroe was screen printed in garish colours.

1923 – SPIRIT DUPLICATOR
The Spirit Duplicator was more commonly known as the Ditto Machine in America, or the Banda Machine in the UK.
Before photocopying technology was introduced, Spirit Duplicators were popular in the production of newsletters and fanzines.
Technique: This method used two sheets, called spirit masters. The top sheet was typed, written or drawn upon and the bottom one was covered in wax. The pressure placed on the waxed sheet then produced a mirror image of the desired marks.
Fun Fact: Because of its ability to produce multiple colours in a single pass, the spirit duplicator was popular with cartoonists.

1925 – DOT MATRIX PRINTING
German inventor, Rudolf Hell invented a dot matrix based device in 1925. It was called the Hellschreiber and was patented four years later in 1929.
Until the 1990’s, Dot Matrix printers were by far the most common form of printer used with personal and home computers.
Technique: Much like a typewriter, a print head moves back-and-forth or up-and-down and prints on impact, striking an ink-soaked cloth ribbon against the sheet paper or other material. However, unlike a typewriter, individual letters are drawn out by a Dot Matrix, allowing various fonts and graphics to be reproduced.
Fun Fact: Like Dot Matrix versions, nearly all inkjet, thermal and laser printers print closely spaced dots.

1938 - XEROGRAPHY
Originally named Electrophotography, Xerography was invented by Pal Selenyi, a Hungarian physicist in 1938.
Technique: A dry photocopying process where areas on a sheet of paper are sensitised by static electricity & sprinkled with a resin that is fused to the paper.
Fun Fact: This technology still exists in modern day photocopy machines & laser printers.

1951 – INKJET PRINTING
While similar technology was patented back in 1867, the first commercial inkjet product was released in 1951 by manufacturing giants, Siemens.

A Look Inside An Inkjet Printer
Although introduced in 1951, it wasn’t until the 1970’s that inkjet printers could reproduce images created by personal computers.
Technique: A high pressure pump directs liquid ink through a microscopic nozzle creating a continuous stream of ink droplets.
Fun Fact: One square meter of inkjet print contains around 20 billion droplets.

1957 – DYE SUBLIMATION
This method of printing focusses on the science of sublimation.
Sublimation is the transition of a substance directly from solid to gas – without passing through the intermediate liquid phase.
Technique: Sublimation dyes are transferred to sheets of transfer paper via liquid gel ink. The ink is then deposited on high-release inkjet papers. After the digital design is printed onto sublimation transfer sheets, it is placed on a heat press along with the substrate to be sublimated.
Fun Fact: Today, Dye Sublimation is a digital method of printing commonly used for decorating apparel, signs, banners and novelty items.

1969 – LASER PRINTING
Laser Printing was invented by then Xerox product developer, Gary Starkweather in 1969. Already working within the photocopying market, Starkweather had the idea of using a laser beam to draw an image on paper. He then adapted a Xerox copier, which became one of the first commercial laser printers on the planet.
Technique: Text and graphics are produced by repeatedly passing a laser beam over a negatively charged cylinder - called a drum. The drum selectively collects electrically charged toner (powdered ink) and transfers the image to paper.
Fun Fact: The first laser printer designed for office use was sold for the equivalent of £13,200.

1972 – THERMAL PRINTING
Traditionally light and small in size, Thermal Printers are ideal for portable retail applications such as point of sale systems.
During the 1990’s many fax machines also used thermal printing technology.
Technique: A printed image is produced by heating thermal paper when it passes over the thermal print head. The coating turns black in the heated area, thus producing an image.
Fun Fact: The 1998 Game Boy Printer was a small thermal printer used to print out elements from some games.

1981 – 3D PRINTING
A 3D Printer In Action
This method is also known as additive manufacturing.
In 1981, Hideo Kodama of Nagoya Municipal Industrial Research Institute invented two additive methods for producing 3D plastic models.
Technique: When it comes to modern day versions, imagine an inkjet printer – but on steroids. Where an inkjet printer puts a single layer of ink on top of the page, a 3D printer adds new layers on top of each layer until the object is completed.
Fun Fact: 3D printers have been used to print a huge variety of different objects, including jewellery, clothing, medical prosthetics, food and houses.

1991 – DIGITAL PRINTING
Digital printing allows digital-based images to be printed directly from a personal computer or other electronic devices.
This method has revolutionised the printing world, allowing for shorter turnaround times and far greater flexibility.
Technique: Digital printers assemble images from a complex set of numbers and mathematical formulas. These images are captured from pixels – a process called digitising. The digitised image is used to control the deposition of ink or toner, which ultimately, reproduces the image.
Fun Fact: Digital printing uses a colour management system, which keeps images looking the same despite where they are printed.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

BRITISH SANDWICH WEEK

British Sandwich Week is underway, and everyone here at the Red Bus Cartridges HQ couldn’t be happier.

Sandwiches are without doubt the most popular lunch option for those living in the UK, so we thought it was time to share some wisdom through 20 fun facts, which you can find below…

And don’t forget, to celebrate British Sandwich Week, we have an amazing competition for you. To be in with a chance of winning a £15 M&S voucher, simply head to our Twitter page and enter.

1. The sandwich is named after John Montagu, the 4th Earl of Sandwich, who frequently ordered meat between two slices of bread when he was too busy for lunch.

2. In fact, Hawaii also used to be named after him too. That’s right, Hawaii was formerly known as the Sandwich Islands.

3. Around 12 billion sandwiches are eaten every year in the UK, with Brits spending a whopping £7.5bn on sandwiches during those 12 months.

4. The average sandwich contains 400 calories, meaning it takes a four mile run just to burn one off.

5. The most expensive sandwich in history was sold for the equivalent of £17,000 back in 2004. Why was it so expensive? Because it appeared to have in image of the Virgin Mary on it.

6. In America, more than three million sandwiches are eaten every day.

7. The average American eats 1,500 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches by the time they graduate from High School.

8. However, when it comes to sandwich fillings in the US, peanut butter and jelly isn’t the most popular. That title goes to the plain ham sandwich.

9. There is a town in Kent named Sandwich. However, the town has no direct connection with its bready namesake.

10. The world has been eating bread, or some baked combination of flour and water since 10,000BC.

11. Along with British Sandwich Week, there is also a day, every year where the sandwiches are celebrated over in the America. In case you were wondering, November 3rd is National Sandwich Day across the pond.

12. There are 11 Guinness World Records relating to sandwiches. 

13. One of these is the fastest time to make a sandwich with your feet. Texan, Rob Williams currently holds the record after making one in under two minutes, using only his feet.

14. On average, men in the UK eat around 110 grams of bread every day.

15. Women in the UK eat slightly less bread on a daily basis – around 75 grams a day.

16. Amazingly, six chicken sandwiches are consumed in the UK every second.


17. A bacon sandwich can actually cure a hangover – that’s according to researchers at Newcastle University.

18. When it comes to national sandwiches, Portugal’s may just be the most indulgent. It contains steak, ham, cheese and two types of sausage. It is then covered in melted cheese and beer sauce just before being served. Yum.

19. A fan of mayonnaise in your sandwich? It might alarm you to hear that the mayonnaise alone is accountable for 30-60% of the calories in that sandwich.

20. To eat the amount of bread produced from just one bushel of wheat, you would need to eat a sandwich for breakfast, lunch and dinner for 168 days.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

REMANUFACTURED OR COMPATIBLE – WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

Printer manufacturers spend a huge amount of time and money ensuring that their cartridges perform faultlessly with their own printing hardware. Hence, original equipment manufacturer (OEM) toner cartridges contain components of the highest quality and are often extremely expensive for consumers.

But what if you don’t have the funds to splash out on an OEM version every time your toner cartridge is running low? Are there any alternatives available?

Well, the answer is yes, and ultimately you have the choice between remanufactured or compatible toner cartridges.

Below, is a comparison between the two alternatives to OEM toner cartridges. As ever, please feel free to share your opinions over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

WHAT IS A REMANUFACTURED TONER?
Well, the clue is in the title – they are OEM toner cartridges that have been recycled and then remanufactured, as shown below.


To begin with, the original, newly recycled cartridge is cleaned and examined. If any parts are worn or broken, they are replaced before being filled with brand new toner powder. Finally, the newly remanufactured cartridge is sent for lengthy print testing before being sold.

WHAT IS A COMPATIBLE TONER?
Essentially, a compatible toner cartridge is a ‘mimic’ or ‘copy’ of an OEM version.

Unlike remanufactured versions, a compatible cartridge is made entirely from new parts, which are generally of poor quality in comparison to those used in OEM toner cartridges.

IS THERE A DIFFERENCE IN QUALITY?
OEM toner cartridges are made with the highest quality and components to minimise any issues and ultimately, produce the highest quality print.

As remanufactured toner cartridges retain as many of these components as possible, they naturally preserve that high standard of printing.
Compatible cartridges are generally manufactured by those who have one goal – to produce them as cheaply as they physically can.

Naturally, this has a negative effect on quality as no components from an original cartridge are used. Instead, components are created, which mimic the functionality of those found in an original.

CAN EITHER DAMAGE MY PRINTER?
To say that you are much less likely to get damage to your printer when using remanufactured toners is a real understatement.  

Remanufactured toner cartridges are made directly from original versions, meaning they preserve the original specifications. They are also tested and checked vigorously (pictured) before being released to the consumer - further reducing the chance of printer damage.

However, compatible toner cartridges are made to closely match the original and because of varying degrees of quality, some simply don’t meet (or come close to meeting) the OEM specifications.

In short, this means some compatible cartridges won’t fit your printer correctly, which can cause ink spills, and physically damage your printer.

WHAT ARE THE ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS OF EACH?
45 million printer cartridges are sent to landfill in the UK every year – with a high volume of these being toners.

Recycling cartridges undoubtedly helps this figure, and plays a massive role when it comes to remanufacturing.

Typically, toner cartridges can be remanufactured between three and seven times. Also, 97% of the components within them can be recycled. Thus, when a recycled cartridge is remanufactured, there is a very small impact on the environment in comparison to originals or compatibles.

It is worth noting that remanufactured cartridges use half the amount of oil in their manufacture in comparison to compatibles and that when plastic is remanufactured, 80% less energy is used in comparison to original production.

On the other hand, brand new parts and components are used every time a compatible cartridge is manufactured – even if they are of a lower quality than those used in originals.

No prizes for guessing which is kinder to the environment, right?

CONCLUSION
The main thing for you to remember, is that at one stage of their existence, remanufactured toners were original versions.

There is absolutely no guess work or copying involved in their manufacture – as we’ve explained, the same simply cannot be said for compatibles.

If you want to avoid damage to your printer and the environment, whilst achieving a print quality which stands up to OEM versions, then remanufactured toners are without doubt, your best bet.

Looking to save money on your printing costs? Head to our site and check out the remanufactured toner cartridges: theredbuscartridgecompany.com

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

INFOGRAPHIC: SAVING THE WORLD - ONE CARTRIDGE AT A TIME

Cartridge recycling and remanufacturing both have an extremely positive effect on the environment. Ultimately, the less inkjet and toner cartridges that end up in landfill, the better.

So, if you have any empty printer cartridges lying around, be sure to recycle them instead of just automatically heading for the bin!

Want to know more about cartridge recycling and remanufacturing? Check out our infographic...

Want to save money on your printing costs while helping the environment at the same time? Switch to our remanufactured cartridges today!

Remember, you can recycle your cartridges for free with our sister company: therecyclingfactory.com

If you want to use this infographic on your website, please use the code below and ensure that you keep the link back to our site:



Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

NATIONAL STATIONERY WEEK

National Stationery Week is upon is, with April 24-30 marking this year’s celebration of writing and office materials.

Below, we have complied a list of 20 fun facts about stationery. As ever, feel free to share your opinions over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

1. An average sized pine tree can make just over 80,000 sheets of paper.

2. Before erasers were invented in 1770, the preferred method for removing pencil was actually stale bread.

3. The world’s first pencil was invented way back in 1565.

4. The average office worker handles around 10,000 sheets of paper per year.

5. Pencil leads actually contain no lead whatsoever – just graphite and clay

6. The Egyptians invented scissors back in 1500BC.

7. In the UK, around 45 million printer cartridges are send to landfill every year.

8. During the Second World War, paper clips were used to help fight the Nazis. Norwegian resistance members wore paper clips on their lapels as a discreet sign to show that they were fighting Hitler’s men.

9. Talking of World War II, this was also where ballpoint pens rose to fame. The Royal Air Force needed an alternative to the fountain pen as it couldn’t handle high levels of altitude without leaking.

10. The average ballpoint pen can draw a line two miles long.

11. However, a typical lead pencil can draw one that is 35 miles long – providing you sharpen it every now and then, of course.

12. Pencils can write in zero gravity and while underwater.

13. The first known stapler was made for King Louis XV of France in the 18th century.

14. Joseph Priestley, the man who discovered oxygen, also helped to invent erasers.

15. The Fulgor Nocturnus is the most expensive pen in the history of the world. Decorated with 945 black diamonds, the pen sold for the equivalent of £6.2m at a Shanghai auction back in 2010.

16. 2,500 pencils can be made from one average sized tree.

17. The word ‘pen’ comes from an old French word for the tail feather or long wing of a bird.

18. Pencils didn’t have rubbers attached to the end of them until around 100 years ago. This was due to teachers feeling as though they would encourage students to make errors.

19. Talking of which, the metal band that now attaches a pencil to a rubber is called a ferrule.

20. Mick Clay invented the drawing pin back in 1903. Sadly, that didn’t stop him from living in poverty as shortly after, he sold the invention.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges163, Beaconside, South Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE34 7PT163, Beaconside, South Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE34 7PT

5 INTERESTING FACTS ABOUT SAINT GEORGE

To celebrate St George’s Day, we have compiled a list of five key facts about England’s Patron Saint…

HE WASN’T ACTUALLY ENGLISH
St George was actually born in Cappadocia in the year 280.

In case you were wondering, Cappadocia is the area now known as Turkey.

Even though St George wasn’t from England and probably never set foot in the country, he is still the country’s Patron Saint – representing courage and bravery.

HE SLAYED A DRAGON (ALLEGEDLY)
The famous legend originates from the Libyan town of Silene.

Silene was apparently guarded by a dragon and in order for the town’s residents to get water, they had to offer a sacrifice to the ferocious beast every day.

One day, the residents agreed to offer their princess up for sacrifice.

However, on the day she was due to be killed, St George came riding by on his white horse, before killing the dragon with his sword, saving the princess in the process.

HE DIED ON THE SAME DAY AS SHAKESPEARE
St George was a soldier of the Roman Army, however after protesting against the pagan Emperor for his persecution of Christians, he was beheaded on April 23rd in the year 303. 

Albeit it over a thousand years later, iconic poet and playwright, William Shakespeare died on the same day in 1616, aged 52.

HE HAS A NATIONAL DAY NAMED AFTER HIM
Since 1415, St George’s Day has been celebrated yearly, on the 23rd April - unless Easter Sunday falls on the same day.
St Georges Day is England’s National Day, however it is not a public holiday and hasn’t been since 1707.


However, that doesn’t stop the more patriotic citizen from flag waving, Morris Dancing and tucking into some traditional foods, such as fish and chips.

AS WELL AS ENGLAND, HE IS ALSO PATRON SAINT OF…
Portugal, Venice, Beirut, Malta, Ethiopia, Georgia, Serbia, Lithuania and the Palestinian territories.

However, his Patron Saint duties aren’t exclusive to countries.

St George is also Patron Saint of Scouting. So every year, on the Sunday nearest to the St Georges Day, scouts and guides throughout England parade through the streets in honour of him.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges163, Beaconside, South Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE34 7PT163, Beaconside, South Shields, Tyne and Wear, NE34 7PT

NATIONAL TEA DAY

Just five days after UK Coffee Week ended, it is now time for tea to take centre stage. April 21st is National Tea Day and as we gave you 15 interesting facts about coffee last week, we only though that it was fair to do the same with our beloved tea!

1. Tea was discovered in China back in 2737BC, when an Emperor reportedly found that tea leaves accidentally fallen in his hot water.

2. All tea (other than herbal) is made from the ‘Camellia Sinensis’ plant.

3. When served without milk and sugar, tea contains no calories and has only half as much caffeine as an equal sized serving of coffee.

4. The average tea drinker consumes three cups per day.

5. The UK imports and consumes 140,000 tonnes of tea every year.

6. Between us here in the UK, we drink a staggering 62 billion cups us every year.

7. However, we are not the biggest tea drinkers in the world – that title goes to the United Arab Emirates.

8. According to a recent survey, 98% of tea drinkers add milk - but only 35% add sugar.

9. Some forms of tea has been proven to prevent cancer and cardiovascular disease.

10. Iced tea was first served during a heatwave at the St Louis World Fair in 1904.

11. Of all the tea variations in the world, green tea is said to have the best health benefits.

12. The most expensive tea in the world is grown in the Sichuan province of China. This tea costs the equivalent of around £155 for a small cup.

13. Although coffee is their main beverage, Americans gulp over 50 billion cups of tea every year.

14. Because of the high levels of antioxidants in tea, you are unlikely to have the same caffeine highs and lows that you will get after drinking coffee. This is because the antioxidants regulate the body’s absorption of the caffeine.

15. Until the Second World War, bricks of tea were used as a form of currency in Siberia.

Don’t forget to vote in our National Tea Day polls on Twitter and Facebook

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

WHY YOU SHOULD AVOID COUNTERFEIT PRINTER CARTRIDGES

We live in day and age where everyone is looking to save money. We are constantly told to shop around in order to find the best deal.

But one thing you shouldn’t sacrifice when looking for a bargain is quality, and printer cartridges are no exception to this.

While counterfeit printer cartridges can save you a huge amount compared to Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) or remanufactured versions, they can cause huge problems to your print quality, hardware and even your personal safety.

Below is a list of the reasons why purchasing counterfeit cartridges should be avoided at all costs.

THEY PRODUCE POOR QUALITY PRINTS

So many people make the mistake of thinking they can ‘get away’ with poor quality, counterfeit printer cartridges – but the truth is you can’t.

The first problem if you are going to encounter is whether the cartridge will actually work at all. In all honesty, you are dodging a bullet if it doesn’t!

However, if it does pass the initial test, then expect a really poor print compared to original or remanufactured cartridges.

Poor colour quality, splotches and streaks are among the many complaints from counterfeit cartridge users.

Also, expect your counterfeit cartridge to be empty pretty quickly after purchase, as there are rarely fully filled during their slapdash manufacture.

THEY CAUSE DAMAGE TO YOUR PRINTER

If you get away with only poor quality printing then to be honest, you should be thankful.

The next, more impactful consequence, is damage to your printer. Counterfeit cartridges can cause a variety problems, at that is usually down to poor quality components used in their manufacture and the fact that they are ill-fitting when inserted into your printer.

Expect leaks, bursts and spits from your counterfeit, all of which can cause permanent staining and damage to the hardware.

Physical damage to both your printer, and yourself should also be taken into account as it is a real possibility.

While remanufactured cartridges are far cheaper than OEM versions, they should never be confused or associated with counterfeits.

Here at Red Bus Cartridges, we source used OEM cartridges from our sister company, The Recycling Factory, before remanufacturing and eventually selling.

If a cartridge does not pass any one stage of our testing process, then they are discarded - as are any counterfeits that we ever come across.


For a greater insight into our remanufacturing process, watch the video above.

THEY CAN VOID YOUR PRINTER WARRANTY

If you are reading this article then there is a good chance that the above two points may already be something that you have encountered - in which case you might be searching for your printer warranty at the same time as reading this!

Don’t for a second think that your printer manufacturer will uphold your printer warranty if it has broken while you were knowingly using counterfeit ink or toner cartridges.

They won’t – it really is as simple as that. As soon as you knowingly use a counterfeit cartridge, you are essentially voiding the warranty on your printer there and then.

That said, if you have made an innocent mistake, and you are able to prove that you didn’t intentionally go out to buy counterfeit cartridges, then you might just be lucky – depending on the make and model of your printer.

THEY ARE BAD FOR THE ENVIRONMENT

Counterfeit cartridges are generally manufactured overseas, meaning that to reach the United Kingdom, they must be shipped long distances.

The lengthy supply chain involved in shipping these items across the world can be extremely harmful to the environment.

The same cannot be said for our remanufactured cartridges, as we complete all of our manufacturing, from start to finish, right here at our purpose built Lincolnshire factory. This enables us to keep our carbon footprint to a minimum and create a closed loop recycling system, as cartridges can be refurbished on numerous occasions.

THEY ARE ILLEGAL

That’s right, the manufacturers of these counterfeit cartridges have illegally copied an original design and have more than likely broken UK Patent Laws along the way.

Counterfeit cartridges are illegal to produce and sell – something you really don’t want to get involved in for the sake of saving a few extra quid!

No matter how cheap they are, counterfeit cartridges should always be avoided. We understand that OEM versions can be very expensive, so if you are looking to save money, why not try remanufactured versions?

Visit theredbuscartridgecompany.com to find remanufactured printer cartridges and save up to 70% compared to OEM versions.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

UK COFFEE WEEK

April 10-16 is UK Coffee Week and to mark the occasion, we have provided you with a list of 15 interesting facts about the world’s most popular hot beverage.

1. Approximately 2.25 billion cups of coffee are consumed around the world on a daily basis.

2. Coffee is now more popular in the UK than tea. That’s right, according to a recent report, Brits spend 60% more on coffee than they do tea. Wowzers.

3. In the UK, people between the ages of 50 and 64 are the most likely to consume and spend money on coffee.

4. Coffee is also hugely popular across the pond with 54% of Americans drinking at least one cup on a daily basis.

5. On that note, the average American spends a whopping $1092 on coffee per year.

6. You are most receptive to the effects of caffeine between 9.30am and 11.30am, with 10.30am being the ideal time to consume a cup of coffee.

7. Contrary to belief, energy drinks still don't have as much caffeine as the coffee sold in chain outlets such as Starbucks and Costa.

8. Black Ivory coffee is the most expensive in the world. But guess what? It’s actually made from elephant dung!

9. According to a study back in 2013, drinking a cup of caffeinated coffee can significantly improve blood flow.

10. The term ‘Americano’ comes from World War II. Government Issued soldiers from the US would order an Espresso before diluting it with hot water.

11. Unless consumed in very large quantities, coffee doesn’t actually dehydrate you.

12. Coffee is the second most traded commodity in the word, with oil being the first.

13. Brazil is the largest producer of coffee in the world, and has been so for the last 150 years.

14. George Washington invented coffee - but not that one! A Belgian man living in Guatemala by the same name invented it way back in 1906.

15. Coffee has been found to reverse the liver damage caused by alcohol. And before you ask - no, this doesn’t mean Irish coffees are healthy!

Remember to share your opinions with us over on our Facebook and Twitter pages.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

10 WAYS TO COMBAT OFFICE STRESS

Almost 16 million people in the UK work in some form of office. While office work may not leave the body battered and bruised like a manual role, it can play havoc with an individuals’ mind.

April 1st marked the start of Stress Awareness Month, so we have decided to compile a helpful list containing ways to combat stress in an office environment.

As ever, please share your opinions over on our Twitter and Facebook pages.

STEP AWAY FROM YOUR DESK
Around 54% of workers in the UK regularly work through their lunch break, with 20% feeling pressure from managers to do so. You have a lunch break for a reason, and you should be contractually obliged to one. If you are able to leave your place of work then you should – go for a walk or have your lunch away from the office. If you work in a purpose built environment that is nowhere near anything, then go to a break-out area for your lunch. Take a book, magazine or just talk to colleagues – leave your work at your desk and relax for the allotted time.

GET SOME SLEEP
The right amount of sleep can help your brain function properly. It has been scientifically proven to help you pay attention, make decisions and improve creativity. Studies also show a direct link between sleep deprivation and increased stress levels. The National Sleep Foundation recommend that working adults need between seven and nine hours sleep each night to function to the best of their ability the following day.

ASK FOR HELP
Can’t figure out how to do something? Struggling to meet a deadline? Why not call in your co-workers for help? The chances are, they either know the answer to your problem or they have some spare time to help you out. Communication is key in any job, and this will help you bond with your colleagues and build relationships. Just be sure to return the favour!

GET YOUR EQUIPMENT FIXED
Sometimes stress in the office can have nothing to do with your actual work. Slow internet or a dodgy keyboard can be just as stressful as meeting an important deadline. As soon as you discover a problem with your workstation, report it to your IT or HR team and get it fixed as quickly as possible.

DON’T RELY ON CAFFEINE
While very small amounts of caffeine can lift your mood and give you a boost, it certainly isn’t something you should rely on. In fact, caffeine can cause sleep loss, cravings and negative health consequences, which in turn, raises stress levels. If you can quit caffeine completely then that’s great, but if not, try to limit it. And whatever you do, don’t consume any after 2pm.

DITCH COMPATIBLE PRINT CARTRIDGES
There is nothing worse than working all day on a document, pressing print to find out that a dodgy copy or compatible cartridge has either ruined your work, or worse still your printer. If you are looking to move away from expensive, original cartridges, then don’t go for compatibles, chose a remanufactured option instead. Remember, you can save up to 70% on your printing costs and get free next day delivery at theredbuscartridgecompany.com

PRIORITIZE YOUR WORKLOAD
Are you facing one of those days, weeks or months where work is so busy that you can’t see a light at the end of the tunnel? If so, then prioritizing your workload is absolutely vital to prevent stress. The first thing you need to do is make a list of everything you need to do, calculating rough completion times in the process. Then put the list in priority order, taking deadlines and importance into account. This way, you will be able to analyse the hours in your workload compared to your working hours. If it isn’t doable, then ask for assistance or delegate the lesser tasks.

KEEP YOUR WORK IN THE OFFICE
Where possible, try to separate your work and home life. You should associate the office with working and your home for relaxing. In some jobs this isn’t always possible, but weekends in front of your laptop are never a good idea.

STAY OFF YOUR MOBILE
It works the other way too – you shouldn’t bring your home life into work. The minute you walk through the door to your office, you should be positive and focused on your work. The more you check your phone for messages or social media, the more you will become distracted, or in some cases, angry. All of which will contribute to high stress levels.

BE POSITIVE
Don’t get stuck in the ‘only five days until the weekend’ mindset. You should enjoy your job, after all, you spend more time in your office environment than you do whilst awake at home. If you dislike your job so much that you have such feelings, then look around for something. A lack of job satisfaction can be an almost instant trigger to stress, anxiety and even depression.

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges

NATIONAL PET MONTH

April is National Pet Month and to celebrate, we have put together a list of the five funniest animal compilation clips on the internet!

Remember to let us know your favourite over on our Twitter and Facebook pages!

THE ULTIMATE COMPILATION
f you need cheering up, then this one is for you. Ten solid minutes of pets behaving badly, complete with hilarious captions – you won’t be disappointed…


(via CooL Vines)

CATS V TOOTHBRUSHES
Recently, we found out that cats really don’t like cucumbers. But guess what? They also hate toothbrushes…




(via CrazyFunnyStuffCFS)

EPIC FAILS
Animals aren’t just pets, they’re our friends too. But then again, who doesn’t like to see a friend making a fool out of themselves every now and then?


(via FailArmy)

DOGS MEET BABY ANIMALS
The perfect combination of cute and funny. Ideal for the warmer hearted folk among us…


(via Mihaifrancu)

CATS STEALING PIZZA
So they hate cucumbers and toothbrushes, but love pizza? Or maybe they just love stealing? Either way, we can’t work our feline friends out…


(via CrazyFunnyStuffCFS)

Article written by Calum Chinchen – Social Media Executive at Red Bus Cartridges