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Price: £3.05 for 150ml (from Boots)
Johnson's has dedicated certain products within their skincare range specifically to people with delicate skin, in order to provide effective cleansers which are supposed to avoid aggravation and excessive drying. In the past I have had bad reactions when products have irritated my skin and so I am often on the lookout for products designed for more sensitive skin.
With micro exfoliating beads, instead of larger particles, this product is thinner than I first expected and does not have an excessively grainy texture (like many of the other exfoliating products out there). This means that when it is applied and massaged into the skin there is no harsh rubbing of the skin or noticeable irritation. Instead it provides a refreshing cleanse which gradually removes the dirt and blemishes from the skin. It has a pleasant smell, although it is by no means overpowering, and the colour of the product (white with pink beads) reflects the gentleness of this wash. The clear tubing makes it easy to see when the exfoliating wash is running out; useful if you use it regularly.
Overall, I have found this product provides soft skin whilst also removing any dirt or dry skin not tackled by ordinary cleansers. It can be slightly drying so you should bear this is mind if you have skin which has a tendency to be sensitive. I have found just applying moisturiser straight after use deals well with this problem and allows me to gain the super soft skin without excessive aggravation.
Price: £2.03 for a pack of 25 (often in an offer, e.g. 3 packs for £3) from Boots
I am great fan of face wipes and find the perfect way to remove makeup and cleanse my skin when I am on the go. However, other branded face wipes can be expensive, especially considering the number you get in each pack, and so I am often on the look out for cheaper alternatives. I couldn't resist buying a whole bunch of these when I saw them on offer and I thought I'd see how they compared to my normal, more expensive wipes.
The first thing which impressed me about these wipes was the lovely, refreshing smell. It was indeed vaguely cucumber-y (as the name would suggest) but not at all overpowering, as can be the case with so many cleansing products. The wipes were very soft and effectively removed all my makeup, including tougher eye shadow and mascara. They did not dry skin out or leave any irritated patches (my skin is relatively sensitive and I often have problems with products being too strong or aggravating my skin). It left me feeling refreshed and my face thoroughly cleansed.
Overall these wipes are incredibly convenient as well as quick and easy to use. Overall, this was a great purchase which successfully provided me with clean skin for a really inexpensive price.
Not particularly bothered by purchasing a very large wide screen television, I was looking for a monitor which could fit into a small space. Having experienced other LG products, such as their mobile phones, I was impressed with the reliability and functioning of them. I found the price of this TV relatively reasonable and several other reviews appeared to suggest it would be more than adequate. I also loved the wine red strip along the bottom which extends up the back, giving the television a simple but sophisticated design.
Upon delivery of the TV I experienced no problems with installation as a step by step guide gave really clear pointers. Altering sound and picture quality is not the headache it can be, with settings allowing you to allocate favourites and perfect the viewing experience. Autotune is also very useful as I live in an area of occasional bad signal and having the ability to manually switch between digital and analogue signal means I can bypass this problem. I have not experienced any problems with the playing of DVDs, such as jumping or refusal to play, although sometimes the sound can be quiet in comparison to live television.
I highly recommend this, especially considering its price and the good quality for its size. I love the design and have found it to be a great small television; exactly what I expected from the initial description.
Price: £25 from Amazon
Product description: Quartz movement system, with whole watch weighing 4.5g.
Having broken my old watch I was desperate to get a new one, feeling lost without being able to know the time whilst I was out and about. Being relatively clumsy I was looking for a watch which was robust but not too expensive, to stop disappointment if it was broken or damaged. The thing that attracted me to this particular watch was the price and the fact that it came with a warranty.
Having used this watch for a significant period of time now I have found it incredibly reliable. I love the simplicity of its design, as I hate watches which are too fussy. The oval shape is really attractive and the link pattern creates a great look. Personally I prefer gold watches and found that the tone of this one was a pretty light, yellowly colour. I was expecting a fading or discolouration over time but this does not appear to have happened yet, which is good considering the price.
I did not find this watch uncomfortable or experience the problem of pincing from the clasp or links. The simple design means it can definitely be worn on a day to day basis with anything. I have had no problems with it stopping or becoming damaged in any way, even though I have a tendency to drop it quite a lot. If glancing quickly, it can be difficult to tell the time in certain lights due to the similar colouring of the entire watch. Occasionally this can be slightly annoying but as it is quite a common occurrence with many of the other watches on sale (due to the style of having jewels instead of a complete set of numbers).
Overall, it has been a great purchase with a pretty design.
Price: £35 from Amazon
Living in a relatively remote area I find owning a reliable and high quality torch incredibly important, especially during the winter months. Previously I have been caught in the dark when walking home as the battery charge wears down and so I was determined to purchase a torch which would last longer and be easily transportable. Despite the expense the P7 was absolutely perfect for this use.
Design: This torch is a sleek black colour, modelled from "air craft aluminium". It uses a standard set of AAA batteries and claims that this will produce 130 hours of battery life. I have found that each set of batteries in this torch does last for ages, although the use of 12 at a time does mean that the cost does not stop after the initial purchase.
However, this does not stop this from being a brilliant torch. It is incredibly easy to use (with a system which allows the setting to be changed from spot light to flood light quickly). The power of the torch is great, producing a strong, broad beam of light. The benefits of the LEDs also come into play, producing a more energy efficient and long lasting effect. It is relatively compact and I find it easier to fit into my bag than some of the bulkier torches I have used in the past.
I would recommend this torch to anyone in look of one which can produce a powerful beam, whether you be out in the countryside or in a more urban area. Personally I use this for getting around in the dark, and it is perfect for this, although it is bright enough to be used for DIY work, in the house or for any number of other uses.
Price: £5 for 500g (each tub contains 25 servings).
Ingredients = Raw Cane Sugar, Citric Acid, Black Tea Extract, Natural Flavouring. 40 calories per 100ml
Having discovered the world of flavoured teas only recently I was eager to try some of the Whittard products on offer, having received some of their samples in the past.
Dreamtime is by far my favourite Whittard instant drink, it is truly addictive! After a stressful day the first thing I do is pop on the kettle and make a large hot cup of this (apparently it can be drunk cold but I don't find it quite the same). It comes in a granular form and by adding just 5 teaspoons to 300ml of water you can make a stunning drink; no messing with tea bags or loose leaves. Whittards recommend mixing 3 spoonfulls with 200ml but I prefer a large cup; basically it is easy to adapt the measurements to meet your needs. The taste is gorgeous, very fruity and sweet (probably to do with the amount of sugar it has in it) and the honey-fied scent to match. The packaging is cute, with a sleep/moon inspired design, and the round tin makes it easy to slip into a cupboard.
Overall: This drink really is a dream and it has become a yummy part of my routine. Whittards often have offers or tasting sessions available on many of their flavoured teas and so I would recommend visiting your nearest shop to give these awesome drinks a try.
Call me old-fashioned but I was recently searching for a basic cd radio, one which I could take with me to uni so I could leave my more expensive equipment at home. I didn't have a huge amount of money to spend and was looking for something that I would not be heartbroken about if it got damaged. This cheap stereo seemed like the perfect answer.
For the price this has been surprisingly good. It is a pretty decent silver colour and light enough to be easily transportable. The size also means it can fit in small spaces, perfect if you are limited in the amount of room you can spare. The player can be operated using 8 C batteries, although I find plugging it into the mains is easier, as the batteries are not included and can be quite expensive.
Overall, I have found the basic functions of this CD radio to be more than adequate. It has all the expected controls e.g. repeat, play and the radio has both a AM and FM tuner. It doesn't pick up as many stations as I am used to on my digital radio but those I do receive have perfect reception. Occasionally CDs skip but I wasn't expecting miracles and often this is with discs which are slightly damaged or scratched to bein with. The two relatively large speakers produce a good sound quality and there is a headphone socket if you want to listen quietly.
For the price this is as good as I could have hoped. It performs the basic functions as I was expecting and has been great to transport around. Obviously if you are searching for a completely faultless piece of equipment, and have more money to spend, then it may be worth shopping around. However, if you are just looking for a cd radio at its most basic give this a go.
This review is about the Beconase Nasal Spray. There are tablets available but I do not have much experience with these as I find the Spray works better (targets the nose which is where I get the worst symptoms).
Price (nasal spray from Boots): £4.28 for 100 sprays or £8.16 for 180 sprays
Includes: Beclometasone dipropionate (50 micrograms per spray)
Having suffered from hayfever badly for several years I have tried many other medicines in an attempt to control it. However, Beconase nasal spray is by far the best product I have found. It contains an anti-inflammatory action which brings relief from the symptoms most associated with hayfever (e.g. sneezing, blocked nose, runny nose and eyes).
Use: The long nozzle from the bottle should be inserted into each nostril, with two sprays put into each side in the morning and then in the evening. This is incredibly quick and easy to do and avoids having to remember to take tablets at odd hours of the day. The effect is at its best when it is used for 2 to 3 days as this allows a build-up to reach maximum protective effect. Beconase has minimised my symptoms (runny and itchy nose, runny eyes) drastically which had previously been overwhelming at times. The effect lasts all day, until my next use in the evening. Although I have never used this for any other allergies I assume it would have pretty much the same effect.
Information worth noting: The nasal spray is not recommended for use under 18 years of age. Dosage, like many other medical products available, is limited to eight sprays a day.
Having recently experienced an unexplained swelling of the eyes I have been especially cautious about the eye makeup I use. I love wearing mascara and so I was on the look out for a more gentle product which wouldn't aggravate any sensitivity. I had a £5 voucher for no. 7 (which are often given out free when you buy other stuff), and I often do not use them. However, having heard that this mascara was very good for sensitive eyes I thought I'd give it a go (especially since I would get it at a discounted price).
The mascara comes in a sleek silver tube and has a widespaced spiral brush. The actual product is thinner than some mascaras I have tried but it doesn't clump or flake away within half an hour of application. Another great thing about the mascara being relatively thin is that it can be layered, so providing flexibility for subtle day wear or a more dramatic look. It does provide extra length, although not necessarily an amazing amount of volume. However, the black/brown tone is perfect, providing a natural colour and it is easy to both apply and remove. Overall, I have found this product to be absolutely amazing. I would highly recommend it!
Price: £1 from Superdrug
Personal experience: I love being able to try out new brands of makeup and looks but am often restricted by money. I am also wary of buying makeup which is too expensive when I cannot be sure that it will be successful. However, having spotted these on sale in superdrug for a great price I decided to purchase some before my next holiday as a treat.
These eyeshadows are available in an amazing range of colours, both matt and pearl. Colours are mainly restricted to neutral, blue and green tones although there are a couple of other shades. I puchased Shade 18 (bright purple), Shade 19 (brown) and Shade 20 (black) - all in matt. They are 2g per pot, which has lasted me for a long time. In terms of application I have found this eyeshadow useful to cover the whole eye lid, as an eye liner or for more detailed shading. Occasionally, if I am not careful, the colour can come out too strong when I wanted a more subtle look. However, this shadow is really easy to smudge or blend using other colours and so this problem can be dealt with. Overall, this is a great eyeshadow which can be worn on a day to day basis or for a stronger night look. I was pleased to be surprised by the quality of this eyeshadow considering its price and will definitely be buying some more soon.
Price: bought for £20 from Amazon
Product description: i-Station 3 provides the complete sound, recharge and sync solution for your iPod. Enjoy powerful stereo sound from this compact elegant and portable system. The perfect companion for both home & away.
Dimensions: 112mm (height), 160mm (width), 30mm (depth)
Having just bought a special edition red iPod nano 4th generation last year, which I was completely in love with, I decided that I needed some speakers to match. I like to listen to music pretty much all the time so having some speakers which were portable but still good quality was incredibly important. Slightly limited by funds I browsed Amazon and discovered the i-Station3 for a very decent price. It is also compatible with many of the iPod makes (classic, nano 2nd, 3rd and 4th, iPod touch 1st and 2nd) having been specifically designed for use with these Apple products, which meant I could hopefully use it with future iPods.
Use: In order to work this speaker dock requires either 4 AA batteries or an AC adaptor (which comes included). This means that it can be transported and used away from a plug socket or you can charge your iPod whilst also listening to music. I found this to be one of the most useful things about this dock as I could charge my iPod in the morning and listen to music at the same time as I was getting ready. Other features included are a USB cable for synchronistation and a stereo line-in cable for playing other devices e.g. iPod shuffle, MP3 or CD player. Although I did not use these as frequently they all seemed to connect well and perform the promised function.
The portable element of the speakers I found to be incredibly useful. Folding down into a relatively small rectangle, with plastic covers to go over the two speaker circles, it is small enough to carry around and yet robust enough to survive a few knocks. In comparison to some of the more expensive speakers on offer these are smaller in dimension although I have found this to be a good thing, especially as I do not have a large amount of free space available in my room.
Unfortunately, these speakers came with one major drawback. They were so successful that I used them at least once a day, whether to charge my iPod or to listen to music. This caused the clicker wheel mechanism, which is located just above the charging port on the iPod, to become displaced. Initially this meant the occasionally the clicker wheel would stop working until I had turned the iPod off and on again. However, eventually the wheel ceased to function entirely unless the iPod was connected to the dock (as this caused the wheel mechanism to be pushed back into place). I was absolutely gutted at this because my iPod was so useful and until then the speakers had been perfect. I experienced no problems with sound quality and had found it great value for money. Whether my issues with the clicker wheel was a simple outcome of overuse or a basic fault with the iPod I am not sure but I would just advise being incredibly careful when taking the iPod on and off the docking station, to avoid these problems.
I hope this explains my ratings in the reliability box, features box and the 2* I gave this product. I wasn't sure how to express this particular problem using the rating system as these speakers were perfect but unfortunately caused some unexpected issues. This product was great, as other reviews have expressed, and I used them for just over a year. However, simply because of the bad experience I had right at the end I felt unable to give them the higher ranking they deserve for my earlier use.
Price = £2.65 (Boots) or 99p (99p Store)
Product description = Arm & Hammer Advanced Whitening Toothpaste deep cleans as baking soda particles dissolve to gently clean away both surface and deep stains. It has lasting freshness as baking soda neutralises odour-causing compounds for long-lasting fresh breath protection. It safely polishes with micropolishers for clinically proven 3 shades whiter teeth.
Personal experience = Having wanted to buy a whitening toothpaste for quite a while I was always put off by what seemed to be very expensive brands, when I couldn't guarantee would necessarily work. However, having seen this on sale in the 99p store I decided I didn't have anything to lose and bought a tube (may also be available at other cheaper stores).
After regular use I found that the powdery, almost gritty, texture of the toothpaste (caused by the baking soda) was quite harsh on my teeth and I had to use it less often due to a fear that it could damage my tooth enamel. I have relatively sensitive teeth anyway but have found overuse of this product can aggravate my mouth. I also found that the general after feeling provided by this toothpaste was not as good as expected. It did not leave my mouth minty fresh for as long as I would like, which was a disappointment considering the refreshing feeling provided whilst actually using the toothpaste. However, it has gradually removed surface stains and my teeth are definitely whiter overall, though not by 3 shades. I think it may have also aided in preventing plaque buildup, although I have not been using it for long enough to determine any long term effects. Overall, using this interspersed with a regular, softer toothpaste worked best for me, providing whiteness as well as gentle cleaning and long-lasting freshness.
Price (from Boots): £3.50 (30 tablets), £4.49 (150ml syrup) or £6.60 (60 tablets)
Ingredients: Chlorphenamine Maleate (4mg), Lactose, Maize Starch, Yellow Iron Oxide (E172), Magnesium Stearate, Water
Dosage (not recommended for children under 6): Aged 6 to 12 = Half a tablet every 4 to 6 hours, Aged 12 and over = One tablet every 4 to 6 hours, Everyone = Do not exceed 6 tablets in 24 hours.
Piriton, a product widely available, is specifically designed to be taken to alleviate the symptoms of allergies and many other reactions to foods or the environment. The active ingredient, chlorphenamine maleate, is an anti-histamine which reduces the common symptoms of many allergies (itchiness, redness, swelling, tenderness and irritation). It is available in both syrup and tablet form, although I tend to use the latter as they are easier to carry around and use on the go. Each tablet is relatively small and so they are not at all hard to swallow and can be easier transported in a purse. I suffer from hayfever, for which this product provides great relief, and a serious peanut allergy (for which I use piriton in combination with an epipen for an instant allergy response). However, in the past I have also used Piriton for particularly bad heat and nettle rash.
Like any medical product the leaflet included states that there may be a whole range of side effects. Most common is drowsiness but others such as headaches, palpitations, loss of appetite and dizziness also appear. Personally I have only ever experienced drowsiness when taking piriton (which does make it difficult to take before exams or in a circumstance when great concentration may be needed). Then again, this does provide extra relief if symptoms are particularly prevelant a night, which is useful for any painful or uncomfortable conditions such as prickly heat or nettle rash. I only ever take piriton when already experiencing hayfever or an allegic reaction and my symptoms often already include many of those mentioned e.g. sickness, rash, etc. so I don't really notice Piriton causing any of these.
There are circumstances in which it is recommended you don't take Piriton; if you have a medical problem such as respiratory problems, very high blood pressure, or are taking products for other conditions such as epilepsy. If in doubt, double check the leaflet provided as it gives a useful and detailed list of all the situations in which you should be wary about taking the product. It also warns against taking it if you are pregnant or breast feeding (again a relatively common feature of many similar medicines). Another factor worth remembering is the advice against drinking alcohol after taking this product, as well as avoiding operating any machinery, I assume due to the drowsiness caused.
I have awarded Piriton 5 stars simply because I have found it to be an absolutely amazing product which has provided relief to the symptoms caused by both mild and more serious allergies.
Price = £4.75 for 25g
Ingredients = Castor Sugar, Organic Jojoba Oil, Flavour, Colour 45410, Colour 45380
Lush description = Bubblegum is made with exfoliating castor sugar and our delicious vegan flavour to gently scrub away rough skin, keeping your lips smooth and kissably soft.
Personal Experience = Being a recently converted Lush fan my purchases are often limited to their facial skin care range, as my other Lush reviews will show. I have had some mixed experiences, especially with some of their strong or more perfumed products, but I am still willing to try some more of their range. Knowing this my friends decided to buy some of the other products for my birthday and this one was the best I received by far.
Although I tend to pamper my skin a lot, my lips are quite often neglected. However, this product is great for sugary sweet, perfect lips. A vivid pink scrub, its main ingredient is castor sugar which means that this product can rub away even the smallest imperfection on your lips. I do get chapped lips, especially in particularly dry or cold weather and it can be quite painful. This helped clear up the dry skin almost instantly, leaving them smooth, soft and less irritated. The flavour of this scrub is incredibly addictive (a delicious sweet, bubblegum taste) and it lasts much longer than many of the other lip products I own. I found that rubbing in a small amount and then wacking on some vaseline or basic lip balm left my lips will feeling amazing. It may be pricey but I have found it an invaluable addition to my Lush collection.
A great product, perfect for anyone, and I have recommended it to everyone I know! The ultimate answer to smooth lips if you can stop yourself eating it before it can work its magic!
Price = £5.25 for 75g
Ingredients = Agar Agar Gel, Kaolin, Honey, Fullers Earth, Glycerine, Almond Oil, Ground Almond Shells, Ground Almonds, Lavender Oil, Chlorophyllin (CI 75810), Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool, Perfume
Lush description = Balancing face mask for normal to oily skin. You've got Fuller's earth and kaolin which are clays to dig deep and extract dirt. Then you have ground almonds and almond shells which you massage in to exfoliate away old skin cells and smooth your skin. On the giving side you have a decoction of agar agar seaweed with lots of lovely minerals to be absorbed into your skin, plus moisturising almond oil and balancing lavender to control oils.
Personal experience = With relatively sensitive skin I am always slightly wary about using products specifically designed for more oily skin types. However, after my latest blemish breakout I was desperate to find a face mask which was natural but also had the ability to give my skin a deep cleanse. Having previously used Lush products when I was in need of a treat, and loved them, I chose this fresh face mask in the hope that I would not be disappointed.
Upon opening the tub I was reassured by the lettuce-green colour and the relatively pleasant smell (a combination of lavender and clay). The mask is quite thick, although not to the extent where it was difficult to apply. Whilst on my face it gave a nice refreshing feel and Not only did it provide a great cleansing effect this mask also exfoliated my face, removing any dead skin cells. It left my skin feeling incredibly clean and smooth and after several applications my complexion appeared more nourished and calm than before.
If you have delicate or especially dry skin I would not recommend you use this mask too often as overuse can have a negative effect (with the strong exfoliation and cleansing causing a slight reddening of the face). Otherwise, this mask is another great Lush product, especially for those of you with problem skin.