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Autarkis

Autarkis
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Member since: 01.10.2008

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    • Tiger Balm White / Pain Relief / 10 Readings / 8 Ratings
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      19.08.2015 00:26
      Very helpful
      (Rating)
      1 Comment

      Advantages

      • "Great for relieving headaches"

      Disadvantages

      • "It can be a bit too cooling if it gets close to the eyes"

      No need to growl when you have a headache

      I discovered Tiger Balm red some time ago, and it has served me well in helping to alleviate aches and pains. I'm happier to use it knowing it is a natural product and I find it better than taking medication unnecessarily. As I had been so happy with this product I thought I'd try Tiger Balm White and hoped that it would have the same satisfying results. Tiger Balm Red is designed to warm the area where it is applied on the skin to relieve aches and pains, whereas as the white version is to provide a cooling sensation which is said to relieve headaches, as well as minor aches and pains.

      I tend to suffer with headaches and migraines often. I hate having a dull head as it leaves me feeling rough and unable to function and concentrate at my best. I also dislike taking medication too frequently, and I only rely on it when needed. I take the natural approach where I can to help ease headaches. I thought I would try the Tiger Balm White to help alleviate headaches and I expected good results.

      >> Price and availability

      Tiger Balm White doesn't seem as readily available as the red version of this product, I've not seen it in many shops. I purchased mine quite some time ago, and I’m glad it lasts well. Some supermarkets may carry it, however, you are best to look online, amazon is a good place to get this. It may well be found in Boots and other chemists. A jar of Tiger Balm retails at around £5 for a 19 g jar. I think this is very good value for money, as it is a great little product.

      >> What’s in the box?

      The product is packed into a neat little oriental designed box and is easily distinguished on the shelf in a shop. Inside the box is a pretty glass jar with a metal screw lid. The product looks smart and expensive, with a tiger embossed on the lid. The small jar is ideal for travel purposes, and it is great to have on hand if you suffer with a lot of headaches. It is ideal to pop in your bag rather than relying on painkillers for those pesky headaches.

      >> Natural ingredients

      Tiger Balm is a topical ointment that is produce from natural herbal ingredients. It consists of natural camphor, menthol, clove oil, and cajuput and mint oil. No nasty chemicals or animal ingredients are present here and it is not tested on animals, so it is kind to the skin and to the environment too. It can be applied to the forehead and temples to relieve tension headaches, and it can also be used for muscular aches and pains. It can be applied as often as needed, giving around 30 minutes between each application.

      >> Tiger balm and it uses

      Tiger balm is a natural remedy that is quite versatile. It provides relief and reduces pain to help while your body heals itself. For headaches it can be all too easy to reach for the painkillers, however, a natural approach is my preference. If I can rid an ailment without medication then I’m happy. Tiger Balm White is for external use only.
      For a headache you can take a small amount of the soft balm and massage it into the temples and forehead. The ointment gets to work straight away as it cools the area and provides much needed relief. The cooling sensation is pleasant and last well. It can be used anywhere that pain presents itself where a cooling sensation will help. It is great when you have a cold and a muzzy head or temperature also. Once applied be sure to wash your hands, as it isn't pleasant to get in the eyes and is easily transferred. Also take care with application not to go to close to the eyes.

      Tiger Balm White is great for headaches. I prefer Tiger Balm red, as it has more uses, however, I do keep them side-by-side in the draw. The Tiger Balm white lasts longer seeing as it is only needed for headaches, so it does me well.

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      • More +
        26.07.2015 21:50
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • Environmentally-friendly
        • "Easy to dispense"

        Disadvantages

        • "A little pricier than other brands"

        Environmentally - friendly laundry product that achieves great results.

        Being a family of three with a young boy who loves to get dirty my wash load never seems to go down. This means I get through my fair share of washing liquid. I prefer washing liquid over other formats, as I find it isn't as messy as powders and sometimes tablets don’t always dissolve completely. I’m quite finicky over what I use, as I need something that is going to clean grubby clothes. I've tried quite a few different brands with none being any more noteworthy than the last.

        I’m always carefully perusing the washing detergents when shopping to see what might be up to the job of keeping my family’s clothes clean. When in Tesco some time ago, I happened to notice a different washing detergent that I’d not come across before. The brand being Method, which produce environmentally-friendly products. I had heard good things about the brand so I was eager to give it a try.

        The Method laundry liquid fresh air is produced from a plant-based formula – how good is that?! I’m all for environmentally-friendly products, and opt for these where possible. This product is made from non-toxic, natural and biodegradable ingredients, which is great for the planet. The slim, lightweight bottle is also environmentally-friendly as it is made from recycled-plastic. So far, so good. Impressed with its green credentials I had high hopes for this one.

        Another advantage that this product has is that it comes in a compact little bottle, and is much smaller than others that hold the same amount of washes. This 600 ml bottle provides 25 washes. The concentrated formula allows for a more compact bottle which is easier to cart from store to home and takes up less space in the home.

        I love the bottle design. To dispense the liquid into the machine there is a handy press-down pump that can be operated with one hand. There’s no fiddling around with taking off a cap or any worry of spilling or wasting any. You need not worry about measuring the dosage, as the unique dispenser takes care of that. You only need 2 squirts, or 4 for really dirty clothes or dependent on how hard your water is. This clever design allows for an accurate dosage each time, with no waste or mess.

        As for the scent, this one is labelled Fresh air, which gives a feeling of cleanliness. I must say, that once clothes have been through the wash with this, they do come out smelling fresh and clean as the name would suggest. There’s no artificial fragrance, just a clean smell. The light scent doesn’t linger, however, the clothes do still smell fresh after they’ve been put away. I personally prefer this fresh clean scent over the sickly artificial scents.

        Now on to how well it performs. Our clothes do tend to get grubby. My son’s school clothes look horrendous by the end of the day, I have to wonder what he’s been doing to get so dirty. His pale blue polo shirt is grubby beyond belief when he comes out of school, as are his trousers. His socks are grim by the end of the day, and it looks like he’s not had his shoes on for indoor or outdoor activities. He’s usually got a mixture of mud, food, pen and any other type of art materials that have been used that day adorned onto his clothes.

        His clothes can also be quite sweaty smelling, too, as he is rather active. I have to actually wash his uniform every night, as it is so grubby. I’m in the gym 3-4 times a week and my gym attire is rather damp after a good gym session. Most everything else in general is not too bad, with bedding and towels being as expected after use. We do a wash load every day, and some days even two wash loads are needed.

        So we have whites, darks and delicate items with wash loads going through generally on a 40 degree wash cycle. I also wash delicates on a 30 degree wash cycle. The only time the water temperature goes up is when illness strikes. I go between using the recommended 2-4 squirts depending on the grubbiness of the clothes in general. I have found that everything comes out clean, fresh and soft every time without fail.

        I have to say that I am pleased with the results. No matter how grubby our clothes have been, I get clean results every time. I was a little hesitant at first, as the liquid doesn’t look like commercial formulas, it is quite thin and a muted, dingy colour. The recommended small amount that is dispensed into the drawer also made me wonder if it would be enough. I needn't have worried, as this stuff is fantastic.

        Clothes come out soft and clean, whites come out clean and colours keep their colour. The slight issue with this product is that it is pricier than other brands. Most commercial brands come up on offer which can be tempting and make for a cheaper buy. This environmentally-friendly product costs £5 for 25 washes, which works out at 25p a wash, so certainly not the cheapest. Refills can be purchased online and work out slightly cheaper at £14 for 85 loads. This doesn't seem to be stocked in many supermarkets, as I've only found it in Tesco. Otherwise, it can be purchased online.

        Method produce a range of products including washing-up liquid, surface cleaners, hand wash and laundry detergent. I have tried a few of their other products all with pleasing results. I do really like this washing detergent, as it is environmentally friendly, it cleans brilliantly and it leave clothes soft and smelling fresh. The only downside is the cost and the limited amount of retailers that stock it. I wish it was more widely available, better known and a little less expensive.

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      • More +
        07.07.2015 10:54
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "A pure baby wipe that does the same job as the chemical laden wipes"

        Disadvantages

        • " and are a little more costly"
        • "They may go unnoticed on the shelves"

        Chemical-free convenience in a packet for on-the-go for easy clean-ups

        Do you really want to be using all those chemicals on a precious baby’s skin?
        When my son was born five years ago, I didn’t find the need to use baby wipes in the early days when his skin was delicate. Water and cotton wool was sufficient enough then. It makes you wonder why all of a sudden you can start using baby wipes which are loaded with chemicals and irritants. I was given quite a few samples, with several types of baby wipes to trial. The leading baby wipes that are widely known were given in the sample packs that are usually received.

        I must say, I have obviously used baby wipes before, as I have a teenage daughter. However, using baby wipes again I noticed how damaging they were to my son’s skin. I could see that they were drying, and I only used them occasionally. I also hate the tacky, sticky feeling they leave behind on the skin, not pleasant at all. I actually decided to use a standard baby wipe on my face, and was horrified at the tingling sensation it left. Suffice to say, I never used them on my face again.

        My son actually arrived 2 weeks later than expected, which caused him to have dry skin. This remained the case for a while after birth, and he would get the occasional dry patch of skin. To this day (7 years on), I’m still careful with what I use, as to preserve his soft and tender skin, which is delicate and sensitive. If it’s not good enough for my skin, then it certainly isn’t good enough for my son’s precious skin. I avoid chemical based products, and opt for natural solutions where possible.

        I decided to search for a different solution, and switched to reusable wipes which can be used with just water or your own cleansing mixture. This was a much better solution, as it was kinder to my son’s skin and the planet, too. Imagine how many baby wipes are used weekly. I found a natural flannel with just plain water was sufficient enough for cleaning my son’s hands and face. For nappy changing, a little tea tree oil and natural soap can be mixed into water to help cleanse the nappy area leaving the skin feeling and smelling fresh.

        Chemical free baby wipes

        However, since my son is autistic, he is nowhere near being ready for potty training. He just doesn’t have the skills, readiness and lacks communication skills. This means that for school he needs to take baby wipes for nappy changing. This is when I had to start looking into finding suitable baby wipes that could be used frequently. Looking in Boots at the different baby wipes on offer, I was bombarded with the main brands, which now come in several varieties. The so-called suitable for sensitive skin wipes are no better to that of the standard ones, as horrifyingly they are still chemical laden.

        Looking at everything on the shelf, I happened on the WaterWipes. I was doubtful at first and wondered if they would be any different from using a damp flannel. Would the higher price be worth it? At £2.49 for a standard packet of 60 wipes it makes you wonder. Considering the other brands generally cost around £1-£2, and there’s usually one that is on offer. However, I thought I’d give them a go just to see what they were like.

        The wipes are packaged in the standard packaging that can be seen with all other baby wipes. The packaging is pure white, which symbolizes the purity of the product, with minimal blue detailing to provide the information. However, the simplicity of the packaging can make them go unnoticed on the shelf. They are secluded along on the shelf, and I haven’t come across them in other shops, as of yet.

        Taking a wipe from the packet, they are the same size and look not much different to a standard baby wipe. However, they feel very different. There’s no stickiness or tacky feeling, rather a soft and smooth moist wipe that feels pleasant when ruffled between my fingers. I was already impressed. The difference is extraordinary. They feature no bevels, embossed patterns or the likes, so they may appear a little thinner to some other wipes; however, they certainly are sufficient as well as durable and strong.

        What makes them so special?

        The wipes are prepared with 99.9% water and 0.1 % fruit juice, making them suitable for all skin types and even kind enough to use with newborns! Additionally, they are allergy-friendly, so great all round. They are preservative free and are free of parabens, chemicals, alcohol and perfumes. There are no added chemicals or preservatives whatsoever, making them the softest baby wipe, ever! It makes you wonder why other baby wipes are so heavily laden with chemicals and perfumes which are damaging to delicate skin.

        The softness of the wipes is amazing, and there isn’t much of a sent to them, in fact, I had to hold it close and inhale to detect a delicate fruity scent. Using these on the hands and face on my son I could see that they were just as good as using plain water, with the added benefit that the wipe is soft every time. Flannels can lose their softness over time. Hands are easily cleaned, no matter what foods my son has eaten. For nappy changing, the task is easily done, the wipes clean up nicely. Even for sticky, unpleasant matters, you can expect good results.

        Good enough for all skin types

        I have, in fact, occasionally tried these wipes on my face, and I was pleased that they feel great! There’s no stinging, burning, or unpleasant residue left behind on the skin whatsoever. This makes them ideal when I’m in a rush and just want to give my face a quick wipe before moisturizing. Having said all that, I must admit that they are only used occasionally, and I always have a packet in the drawer. I don’t like to be wasteful, so only use these when absolutely necessary. I tested them on my own skin to see if they were good enough for my son’s skin.

        Buying in bulk makes sense

        For traveling, days out and for school these make an ideal solution for cleaning up. I have since found that Amazon stock these and sell them in bulk. For 12 packs they retail at £25, which is a little saving. This is a good option for me, as in means that I have them in stock and don’t have to carry them from the shops. It also means that I always have plenty in for when needed. I must say that one packet lasts a long time for us, this may not be the case if using with a baby and you want to use them more regularly. However, I use these sparingly, and only 2 or 3 wipes are needed for a soiled nappy changed, and only one is needed for a quick hand and face wipe when needed for out-and-about.

        Better than all the rest!

        While these are mainly sent in for school, I only send one packet at a time, and they only request a pack every other week. So this means that these last a good amount of time! As they last so well, are much kinder to my son’s skin, and are great for convenience for school and travelling these wipes are great for us. These are the only baby wipes I will purchase, as the difference is astounding. Once you’ve tried these you will be converted, and never want to return to previous brands.

        What would be better is if the price on these were just a little lower, as children are costly. However, personally, for a product that is far better and is kinder to my son’s skin I am willing to pay out more. Companies of this type must know this, which is possibly why they bump the price up?

        A baby’s skin is precious and delicate, which means only the purest products should be used to maintain the health of a baby’s skin. These baby wipes are the best on the market, as they only contain water and fruit juice, making a fantastic alternative to all other baby wipes. No other nasties are used here, and they work just as well, without leaving any sticky residue or synthetic smell behind. They are great for babies and children and can be used on all skin types. In addition, they work well for freshening up, and removing make-up. As they are kind to the skin, it is good to be kind to the planet, by using these sparingly.

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      • Clipper Sleep Easy / Tea / 9 Readings / 8 Ratings
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        30.06.2015 11:27
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Clipper Organic Sleep Easy Infusion

        I try to make healthy choices with food and drink, as I feel I benefit from consuming healthy products. As far as beverages are concerned, I avoid many as they contain too many nasty ingredients that I’d rather not consume. I am not overly keen on artificial tasting drinks either. My staple drinks include water or green tea. I have been branching out and trying other herbal infused – teas, of which there are many.



        Whilst in my local supermarket I was scanning the aisle to see what herbal teas were available. There’s quite a few now to choose from, and I wasn't aware of all the different flavours. I was also looking for tea that is calming and something different to Chamomile which I often have in, as Chamomile is relaxing. I wanted something to help with relaxation and to aid in good sleep, as my sleep has been a bit disturbed with many stressful situations all occurring at once, it’s always the way.



        I scrutinised the shelves reading the labels carefully and my eyes stopped on the Sleep Easy Infusion Tea produced by Clipper. I often choose teas from this brand, as they are always good. I picked up the attractive box to take a closer look. The subdued colours along with the stars and moon picture on the box allow this tea to be easily distinguished. The box provides 20 teabags priced at around £1.35 a box. This tea is widely available in most leading supermarkets, and can be found alongside other herbal teas.



        I was intrigued and wondered if a tea would actually help me to get a decent night’s sleep. I must say, I was a little unsure. Looking at the ingredients, however, the tea does contain valerian, which is a natural sleep aid. This made me think that this tea may be good after all. The fact that it is on the shelf alongside the other tea products means this product is available to anyone. The unbleached teabags are enclosed in a foil bag for freshness in a biodegradable and recyclable box. It must be noted that this is a fair trade product that is organic, which is good to know.



        The scent that emanates from the packet isn't overly pleasant, it must be said. It is quite overwhelming and may be off-putting to some. However, once infused in boiling water the scent takes on a more orange fragrance. It suggests brewing for 5 minutes, though I never leave it that long. I was a little apprehensive to try the tea once brewed; however, I wanted to get some sleep, so hoped for the best. The tea isn't the nicest, but that was expected from the heavy scent. It is still palatable though. It has quite an orange zesty taste to it. I sipped on my tea in bed shortly before getting ready for sleep.



        I usually have a green tea last thing at night, so this wasn't a great change for me. I didn't feel any different after drinking the tea, and shortly after I settled down ready for sleep. The next thing I knew, it was morning and I had had a good, settled sleep! I was astounded at the fact that I had had a good sleep and was ready to start the day. I continued taking the tea for a few nights with the same pleasing results. Once my sleep had improved, I went back to my regular tea. I was happy that the sleep infusion tea was beneficial and let me get a good sleep and got my sleeping pattern back on track.



        With there being 20 teabags in the packet, it isn't necessary to consume them all after opening. I do go back to them occasionally to help me when I feel a little unsettled and if my sleep pattern suffers. I have actually gone through a box and have purchased a second box to keep in the cupboard, as I find this a good alternative to medication. This can be used on its own with pleasing results.



        This tea is worth trying, as it can work wonders. Sleeping tablets leave that groggy feeling the next day, making it difficult to wake up fully and feel energized. I hate the feeling and find that it alters the quality of the day. This tea leaves me feeling perfectly normal and ready to get going in the morning with no after effects whatsoever. If you need to get your sleeping pattern back on track, give this tea a try and enjoy the benefits.



        This is a great aid to help improve the quality of sleep, and it works!

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      • More +
        28.06.2015 10:13
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "Excellent performance from these tweezers and the small size allows for a closer grip"

        Disadvantages

        • "The price can put some off trying these little beauties"

        Cute, small, precise and neat!

        I strive for smooth hairless skin, and I have been plucking my eyebrows since I was a teen. I already had a good set of tweezers that I was more than happy with, however, I was attracted to these, as they are smaller making them ideal for travelling, and come with a tube for storage. I have heard many positive things about Tweezerman tweezers, and I have a pair of their hairdressing scissors which have been a brilliant buy.

        The incredibly sharp tip is the sharpest I have ever come across, which has its advantages and disadvantages. With the tip being so sharp it is precise and easily grabs at the smallest and finest hairs that are only just visible to the eye, however, the downside is, if you’re not careful it can nip the skin, with care and control though this isn't likely. I love the fact that they are so precise, and make it so much easier to grab those fine hairs.

        The mini tweezers are more affordable at £12 as opposed to the full size tweezers from their range which are priced around the £20 mark. This also encouraged me to purchase these over the more expensive larger ones. I must say that I favour these over the larger ones, as I find them easier to manage and handle. The small size is actually favourable for the ease of use, and these are the ones I reach for over my other full size set from their range. They are just the right size to hold comfortably.

        The tube that is supplied with the tweezers is a great idea, as it stores them away neatly and prevents them from becoming damaged or blunted. It is a far better way to keep the tip from becoming damaged, as often the small protective plastic tip cover that is standard with most tweezers is easily lost. I love the tube, as I always return the tweezers to the tube after use. This keeps them in good condition and protects the tip. Also, it makes it easier to find them in your makeup bag.

        Like all Tweezerman tweezers these are incredibly precise. They grab each hair individually, and allow for a fast a clean job of eradicated those unwanted hairs. There is nothing more frustrating than trying several times to grab a hair to fail or not actually pull it out. These take away that frustration, and I never miss a hair, even those fine fair ones. Getting close to the brow you can sometimes have one or two hairs that need to be removed, this doesn't cause worry, as I know that I can easily remove the one hair I want without messing up the brow line.

        These cute small sized tweezers come in several colours and patterns, allowing you to choose a design you like. I actually have the paw print design and the same ones again in just a mint green colour. I liked them that much that I actually have two pairs. That is testament to just how good they are. They are actually my favourites over all the different tweezers I've owned over the years. These have lasted me a good amount of time, too. Due to the fact that they are neatly stored away in their protective tube, they are less likely to be lost.

        While these may appear expensive when you can get tweezers for a pound, you certainly can tell the difference. Also with these, you will get years of service without the need to replace them. The stainless steel tip keeps its precision and this doesn't change over time and a heavy amount of use. The enamel coated handle also remains just as perfect, as the enamel coating protects the finish allowing it to keep its colour and pattern. So, not only do they continue to look like new, they continue to perform like new each and every time without fail.

        These tweezers come in a range of colours and patterns and may be found cheaper on Amazon depending on the design you go for. They are the best pair of tweezers you’ll ever own, and you won’t need to replace them. Inferior brands often need replacing, making them no cheaper as you need to buy new when they become blunt. These will continue performing to a high standard time and time again.

        To make the task of tweezing easy wash the eyebrow area with warm water, or pluck after showering. It is best the area is clean and free from products and the warm water opens the pores making plucking slightly less painful. Clean the tip of the tweezers from hair between plucking, this can be done with a clean tissue. I either wipe mine on a tissue after each hair removal to remove the hair, or I blow the hair from off of the tip, and sometimes I use hot water in the basin and just swish the tweezers through the water. After use it is best to clean them and ensure they are dry before placing them back into their tube.

        These are my all-time favourite tweezers that I wouldn't be without. They not only look cute, they are incredibly accurate and take the frustration and stress out the tedious task of plucking eyebrows.

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      • Ikea Bekväm Step stool / Kitchenware / 9 Readings / 9 Ratings
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        23.06.2015 10:58
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • " hard-wearing step and stool."
        • "Great quality"

        Disadvantages

        • None

        Step up or sit anywhere in the home

        I often have a browse around Ikea when I have free time, as it certainly takes a while to get around the place. I don’t always go in with intent to buy, sometimes I just go to pass the time or just for a browse. Living in a rented house I don’t like spending too much on furnishing, also our budget is tight, like most. So, Ikea is a good place to buy household stuff, as it is inexpensive and often good quality. I've never had any problems with anything I've had from Ikea. Some of their ranges are a little quirky and fun, while others are plain.

        While browsing, I usually find myself wanting something. Usually I see things that are good value and also good quality. I have to question the need for the items I find. One such item I came across was the Bekvam step stool. I liked the chunky and solid design and thought it would be a useful item to have. I had no actual need for it, but it was a good buy at only £12. What a bargain. I just had to have it, as it seemed like a steal.

        The stool is crafted from solid Beech wood which is a natural colour. It looks to be incredibly hard-wearing and well-made. It is a chunky design with a narrow bottom step and a larger top step that also provides a seat. The seat itself features a slot that serves the purpose of allowing the stool to be lifted and moved around. The height of the stool is 50 cm, which provides a good height for a child or adult to use for sitting on.

        The stool comes flat packed and requires self-assembly, and is incredibly heavy weighing 4.kg. I was shocked by the weight when trying to lift one from the stack in-store. Assembly is quick and easy and only requires one person to put it together. Once constructed it is sturdy and solid. The natural finish is pleasing and looks neat and as such it would fit in with any décor.

        The stool is ideal for providing an extra seat when needed, and is great for kids to use as a sturdy seat. It has many purposes and as well as being a good little seat and providing an extra seat when needs be, it obviously perform as providing a stool that can be used to help us shorter people reach higher around the home. This is great for when you need to reach up into cupboards, great for when cleaning and that extra height is needed to get into those out of reach areas and good for when painting to help reach further up.

        My daughter loved this little stool and we all used it for various purposes for a good number of years. While it’s not the most comfy seat in the world, it certainly isn't unpleasant to sit on. After a good time I allowed my daughter to paint it with kids play paint which she enjoyed. As time went on and she got older along with the stool, I decided it needed a fresh look so I painted it red. It is so easy to sand down and paint any colour you wish. Of course, with it being a blank canvas you can unleash your artistic streak and design it however you wish. Being able to paint it allows it to be freshened up as well as give it a new look. This allows the stool to continue looking good for years and years. The solid wood is strong and ours still looks in great condition. It would take a lot to damage this, as the wood is durable and hard-wearing.

        Such a great stool, which has a dual purpose and at a great price of only £12, what a bargain. This has been a great impulse buy and a usual piece of furniture. Great for kids and adults to use in and around the home.

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      • More +
        15.06.2015 10:24
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "Provides a shimmer upon the skin that is natural"
        • "Natural ingredients"

        Disadvantages

        • "A little pricey"

        Sun-kissed shimmery skin for summer

        Burt’s Bees produce a wide range of skincare products that are produced from natural ingredients that are cruelty free. This is the main reason why I chose to trial their products, and since I have purchased many of their different skincare products from their range. I am always happy and know that I can trust their range to deliver good results whilst being kind to my skin. I always take good care of my skin and like to apply moisturising products to keep it in good condition.

        I always apply a rich moisturiser after showering, especially in the evening before retiring. When browsing the range of Burt’s Bees products I noticed the Radiance body lotion and was intrigued. Whilst this is a moisturising product it also produces a natural glow to the skin. This is perfect for the warmer months when you want your skin to illuminate and look radiant. I was more than happy to pay £9.99 for a 175ml tube, as I knew it would be money spent well. This may seem expensive, but once you have tried their products you will realise that they are actually good value for money.

        The tube is sat on its flip top lid. The material of the tube is thin and pliable, much more so than most other tubes that can often irritate when trying to use up the dregs of the bottle. Only a gentle squeeze is needed to produce a small globule of product onto the hand. The lotion is white and creamy and rather thin in consistency which makes it easy to smooth over the skin, and this means it also goes a long way.

        The luxurious lotion is infused with mica which is a light reflecting mineral that produces a natural shimmer. Smoothing the lotion over the skin is effortless and a small amount certainly goes a long way. Only a thin layer is needed to cover the skin to moisturise and provide a shimmery appearance. It is quite surprising that only a small amount is needed, adding any more doesn’t make the product shimmer any more. The effect is the same no matter how much product is applied, so it offers good value, as the tube is going to last a good amount of time.

        The lotion is produced using royal jelly which is incredibly nourishing, and it is also packed with natural oils and infused with mica. It needs to be massaged gently into the skin as you would with a regular body lotion. It can be used all over, and is especially good to use on areas of skin that are going to be exposed to give a soft shimmer. I tend to apply it to my arms, upper body and legs, though I do continue to massage it over the rest of my skin before dressing. The lotion is light, and clothes can be put on straight after application.

        The lotion has a smooth texture and the mica isn’t evident or gritty on application, however, once applied you can see the beautiful natural shimmery glow upon the skin. It is subtle, yet it looks amazing. It leaves the skin looking healthy and glowing and is perfect to give a healthy natural look. It is no different from wearing a regular lotion, apart from the fact that it has a wonderful shimmery effect. It doesn’t wear off or mark clothes and it remains on the skin for duration of the day until you wash. If worn overnight there is no worry, as it won’t harm the bedding, and it doesn’t make a mess.

        This is a gorgeous product that I adore, as it leaves my skin looking luminous. It feels light on application and leaves my skin feeling smooth. The mica is infused within the lotion so it gives even coverage and makes it easy to apply. It gives a natural look that is very pretty. This has to be one of my favourite products to use during the warmer months, as it looks amazing on the skin and the tube lasts really well.

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      • ELC Plasticine 8 Pack / Art / Craft / 9 Readings / 9 Ratings
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        09.06.2015 00:11
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "Helps improve creativity and fine motor skills for toddlers"

        Disadvantages

        • "It can be very addictive"

        Modelling fun for old and young

        I’m always looking for new ideas for arts and crafts time, to keep my fickle toddler interested and busy, whilst expanding on educating him through play. Whilst I love play dough, my son hasn’t always shared my passion. He is not keen on the texture or scent of some conventional play dough, which leads me to making my own, time permitting. On returning from a day out, I popped into Boots and happened to notice the Plasticine packs, which are incredibly good value for money at only 99p a packet. I decided to buy a couple of packs to spark his interest in a new kind of modelling compound.

        A Rainbow of Colours

        The card envelope pack contains 8 sticks of different colours which can be combined to make more colours. The Plasticine is wrapped in a cellophane pack to keep it fresh. The pack provides a leaflet which gives examples of the colours that can be created using 2 different colours. This allows for a wide variety of shades to produce many different creations. The vibrant colours include white, purple, red, green, blue, yellow, orange and black. The leaflet provided demonstrates basic shapes, and how to add fine detail to models.

        Bright Beginnings

        It is advisable to cover the area and wear old clothes, in case the colours should stain or mark clothes or surfaces. I must admit to not covering my table, as it is subject to my child’s messy eating and playing, and I don’t worry about it getting marked. Whilst at home my son wears play clothes, so that he can get messy without any worry. With no preparation needed, we were ready to explore and create models with the Plasticine. The coloured strips are stuck together side by side, and are easy to separate ready for play. Each coloured strip features ridges to make it easy to divide the product, this is handy if you wish to mix colours, or if you only want to use a small amount of one colour.

        A model play session

        The Plasticine itself is soft and pliable, making it easy for little hands to manipulate. It doesn’t really have much of a scent to it, which is an advantage for us. Both my son and I were eager to explore the coloured sticks of Plasticine as we excitedly pulled them apart, each selecting our preferred colour. I was apprehensive as to whether my son would be interested, and if he would like the texture as he has never been a fan of other shop bought play dough. I was pleased that he was curious, and enjoyed playing and manipulating the product. It is firmer consistency to that of play dough, which makes it a good transitional progression for toddlers to move onto, or to enjoy alongside. It is incredibly addictive, as it is therapeutic and relaxing.

        It kept my son and I entertained for a good amount of time, we enjoyed manipulating it, and sculpting different shapes from it. We also enjoyed creating new colours to add to the range that was on offer. This made it possible to add more colours to our creations. We had fun making models, and my son enjoyed sticking the finer details to the models I created, and he was fascinated that they stuck. It is easy to add detail to models using a pencil tip, and this makes it more fun. As the product is firmer than play dough, it needs to worked more to create shapes. It enhances fine motor skills, as it is quite fiddly to make models and shapes. My son had great fun, and it kept his attention for a considerable amount of time. It is a good activity that encourages concentration, and focus.

        We have had hours of fun creating with our Plasticine, and I now always have a couple of packs in the art and craft box. It is a fun activity that gets enjoyed most days, as it is great for stimulating creativity. It requires little to no preparation, and makes very little mess, making cleanup quick and easy. It wipes off of surfaces with ease, and rinses off hands easily, too. This is a low cost activity, that is versatile, fun, educational, and adults enjoy it just as much as children. It isn’t essential to buy tools to make models, as it sculpts easily with hands, and it can be manipulated with ease to any shape desired. A pencil tip is sufficient for adding in details if required. This makes this activity affordable and great value for money.

        Sculpting the Mind

        Playing with Plasticine is a fun open ended activity that has many educational benefits. It allows children to explore their creativity, and use their imagination. It promotes sensory development, and improves hand-eye coordination, as well as strengthening hand muscles which helps prepare a child for learning to write. It increases dexterity and fine motor skills, as a child manipulates the product. Playing with Plasticine teaches children about colours and how they can be combined and mixed to create a new colour. Children learn about textures, and how to create shapes. It stimulates a child’s imagination whilst promoting creativity.

        A Model for the Future

        Plasticine has been around forever, and is a favourite with adults and children alike. It is an open ended activity that allows for creative play. This versatile modelling compound provides a great activity that can be enjoyed time and time again. After each play session the _Plasticine_ can be store in a food bag or container to keep it in good condition for future play. It doesn’t dry out or go hard, and the vibrant colours last without fading. During any of the play sessions that we have had it has caused no staining to any surfaces, and has cleaned up easily after each play session.

        Recommended age 3 to 8 years.

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      • Schleich Frog / Action Figure / 12 Readings / 11 Ratings
        More +
        02.06.2015 12:05
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "True to form and a durable toy that will last"

        Disadvantages

        • "May seem expensive initially"

        A life like frog

        I have always adored animals and their beauty. My preference is often towards reptiles, amphibians and other exotic animals. I wanted to get a set of animals for my son some time ago, and I had little luck in finding anything satisfactory. I have bought several animal figures, however, they all failed to impress. They are often cheap and the colouring and detail is far from accurate. I continued searching to try and find something better, but I was underwhelmed by the lack of animals play sets and figures. Eventually I came across the Schleich range. Schleich are a German company that produce a wide range of farm animals and wild animals. Their extensive range is impressive, however, their prices may seem steep ranging from £3 to £10 for each individual figure.

        I originally ordered just two animals from the Schleich range from Amazon. I had no idea what the quality would be like, however, the pictures were fantastic, so I could only hope that they would be of a good quality. I was delighted and awe-inspired when I received the animals, and my son loved them. I have since gone on to buy more, and we have a bit of a collection going on. I tend to buy one every now and again to add to the collection, as they offer great play value and they are by far the best animal figures that are available. It is rare that I will buy any other animal figures, and I tend to be loyal to the Schleich brand. The quality in each toy is astounding, which is how the collection grows.

        I tend to opt for the larger animals in their range, as they offer animals of different sizes at different prices. However, when I spotted the small frog I was in awe and I just had to pick it up. I was buying the frog despite what my son thought, as it was just adorable. The small frog measures in at 3.5 x3.5 x 2.0 cm and retails at £2.75. It may seem a little pricey for such a small toy, however, the quality is outstanding and this is a toy that is made to last. My son gets great pleasure and enjoyment from playing with his animal figures, which encourages me to buy more. This toy frog, along with all of the figures from the Schleich range is suitable for children from 3 years and up.

        Each animal figure carries a tag with their trademark red S to show that it is an official Schleich toy, which is easily removed ready for play. The solid figure is handcrafted from a durable synthetic plastic. Every figure is intricately hand painted, giving each one a slightly different appearance. The frog is beautifully painted and is true to form. The features are lifelike and it features textures and ridges in all the right places. The colouration is fantastic with the colouring being lighter on its webbed feet to give it definition. The fantastic attention to detail makes this toy worth every penny.

        This little frog lives in my drawer in the living area, as my son is prone to mouthing objects, and with the frog being small I only let him play with it under supervision. He adores the little frog and often plays with it, and bounces it off of surfaces sending the frog flying. It is also used during water play sessions, where it feels at home. As the frog is solid it is easy to dry after to put away. It is a solid toy that is a joy to play with. After much play, being bashed about and played with under water, the frog is still in excellent condition with no markings or scratches to be seen anywhere. The colours are immaculate and it is still in fantastic condition.

        Animal figures are great fun to play with, as they offer open ended play. They capture and spark a child’s interest and imagination, as they can be played with in many ways. Creative play stimulates the mind and promotes imaginative play. This little frog is great for playing with in water as well as on land and it is small and portable to be able to take out and about. However, take care not to lose it, as it’s small it can easily be misplaced. We generally take a couple of animal figures with us on train journeys to keep my son entertained, however, I do keep a watchful eye, and put them into my zipped pocket when we are on the move.

        The £2.75 price tag may seem steep, however, when you realise just how well made the Schleich figures are, it doesn’t seem expensive at all. This toy will give hours of fun and will last a lifetime. Schleich toys are made to a high standard and are amazing toys for imaginative minds.

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      • More +
        12.05.2015 11:34
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "Natural product"

        Disadvantages

        • None

        A natural way to protect my son’s skin from the harsh elements

        My little boy arrived into the world two weeks later than expected which left his skin looking wrinkly and dry. I had to take extra care over his fragile skin to keep it in good condition and to eliminate the dry skin that was present. I've taken natural approaches and have taken extra care to keep his skin feeling soft and looking healthy.

        He has always been a chewer, and this is down to a sensory disorder that leaves him seeking oral input. He will chew on anything; however, he mainly chews on his clothes, especially his cuffs and collar. The extra saliva production is damaging and drying for his skin. The cold winter months are also drying to his skin, leaving it dry and blotchy at times. This isn't a good look, plus it must feel tight and uncomfortable.

        Just lately I have become rather fond of Weleda products, as they produce a lovely range of natural goods. Within their product line they have a selection of skincare goodies for youngsters. I particularly like the Weleda Baby Calendula Weather protection cream. Calendula is an excellent moisturizing product that works wonders on the skin.

        This bitter weather has left my sons skin looking dull and dried out, and around the mouth area he suffers with red blotches from chewing. I decided to purchase a tube of the Weleda Weather protection Calendula cream to help protect his skin against the harsh elements. The product is contained within a metal tube which is pliable. The screw top cap is easily opened and closed, although I would prefer a flip top cap.

        The cream is a luminous yellow colour and has a rich consistency, so only a little is needed. I use this sparingly on his face and backs of his hands before leaving the house. If we are staying at home I don’t apply the cream, as there is no need. As it is a weather protecting cream, I feel happy that it is protecting his skin from the elements whilst moisturizing his skin, too. In addition, it can be used on the lips too, which is a bonus, as the lips are certainly prone to become dry during cold snaps.

        This gorgeous product is vegetarian friendly and can be used by all the family. It is rich in oils which makes it an excellent moisturizing product. I love skincare items that contain oils, as they are easier to apply and lock in moisture whilst staying in situ for longer. A small amount on the tip of my finger allows a light covering on his face, which is easily noticed after application. The oils do not leave an overly greasy look, rather a healthy shine.

        The cream smoothes over the skin effortlessly and leaves a healthy glow. There is enough left on my fingertips to cover the backs of his hands, too, as only a small covering is needed. The small 30ml tube retails at almost £8, which may seem expensive. However, a tube of this cream lasts a good amount of time, and even I use it myself from time to time. It is a dream to use on the skin leaving it feeling soft and supple, and just as much after braving the cold elements. I don’t find it sticky after application, and it soon dries leaving a soft barrier on the skin.

        My son’s skin is cared for and protected throughout the cold weather to keep it in tip top condition. I am selective over the products that I use on my son’s skin, and prefer to be sparing with what I do use. His skin is soft to the touch and looks healthy year round. This amazing product from Weleda helps to protect his skin from the harsh elements which can be drying and damaging. As I know the cream is produced from natural products I am happy to know that it is kind to his skin.

        It has a very faint fragrance which is really rather subtle. I can only just catch a faint scent on application which is sweet. The scent isn't obvious, which is how I prefer it to be. As this is a weather protection cream it only really needs to be applied to the areas of skin which are exposed to the elements to provide a protective barrier. As such, this allows the cream to last a long time, making it excellent value for money.

        If you want that little extra care to keep you little one’s skin soft and supple, whilst protecting it from the elements this product is perfect. The high price is worth it, as it is produced from all natural ingredients that are kind to delicate skin. As well as protecting the skin, it also moisturizes, too, so it aids in healing any sore or dry areas that are in need of a helping hand. This product can actually be used by all the family, and is suited to sensitive skin.

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      • More +
        01.05.2015 11:42
        Very helpful
        (Rating)

        Advantages

        • "Excellent quality"

        Disadvantages

        • Expensive

        A Confort for both baby and parents

        When my son was born 5 years ago I opted for a budget pushchair and car seat combination. The main reason for this was that the pushchair came with a car seat which is needed to bring a baby home from hospital. As neither my partner nor I drive, the car seat was only going to get used the once. I knew I would carry my baby, but the pushchair was good to have for occasional use. I wasn't keen on the look or feel of the pushchair, however, it did its job and that was all that mattered.

        I wasn't in any rush to purchase a new pushchair, as having a baby is an expensive time, and everything is to be used without waste. However, after time, once the pushchair started to become a little small for my son, I was delighted to go on a hunt for a new pushchair. I certainly spent a lot of time looking around at all the many different models, and all the different options available to me. I didn't really want to spend more than £150; however, I would stretch myself a little more if I found the perfect pushchair. After all this is a big buy, and something that needs to be safe and comfortable for baby.

        I really did search long and hard, and took advantage of the Internet to search through all the options and compare prices. When I happened on the Confort Loola I knew this was the pushchair for me. However, the hefty price tag made me really think this purchase through. I wanted to make sure there was no other pushchair to compete against this one, and that the design was going to be practical and hard wearing and meet my expectations and fulfill my demands. As such I bookmarked the pushchair, and gave time to consider my choice carefully.

        The painstakingly long consideration paid off, as did my price comparing, as I did indeed find this particular pushchair on sale in black. The offer was most tempting and had me waste no time in ordering the pushchair. While I preferred the vibrant red option, I did go for the black, as this one was on sale, and the discount made it worth it. I had already done all my research and knew that this pushchair would be the one for us. I was very happy to bag my dream pushchair for a bargain price. The full retail price of this particular pushchair is £299. The price will vary depending on retailer, and any offers that may be available.

        I was excited to get this pushchair and couldn't wait to take my son out in it. Once it arrived, it looked exactly as it did pictured. The quality and overall appearance was first-rate. It really was a beautiful pushchair that looked smart. I loved the design and the chunkiness of it. It looked like a beast that was suitable for all-terrain and be up to anything. This is what pleased me, as my partner and I walk a lot and venture far and wide. We enjoy being outside enjoying the world. Most days we walk several miles, and this meant we needed a pushchair that would be up for that challenge. I didn't want a flimsy pushchair that would wear out quickly. So the high price may seem over the odds, but this looked like a pushchair that was built to last.

        - Let’s take a closer look

        The pushchair features a seat that faces inwards or outwards. This is a good feature, as some parents prefer to be able to interact and observe their child on-the-go, while others prefer to let their little one view the world around them. This allows you to decide on what you prefer. Changing between the two is something best done at home while the seat is empty. As it requires you to unlock the seat and physically take it out of the frame, turn it and drop it back into position and lock it back into place. This seemed to be a bit of a faff, or so I thought. My daughter’s pushchair had the inward/outward facing option, but this could be interchanged on-the-go, however, this required clicking in the handle and pushing it to the other side. Having said that, I think I preferred the option that my son’s pushchair provided, as it seemed secure and looked tidy when changed over.
        To begin with I was unsure if I wanted the pushchair to face inward or outward. I decided I wanted to be able to have my son face me, as I would be able to interact with him and care for his needs with greater ease. It is actually nice to be able to keep an eye on your little one without having to stop. However, after a time I decided to change it over and let my son enjoy the views of the world from his seat. He was a very curious baby that seemed to want to look at everything.

        - Riding in comfort

        The bucket style seat is spacious and luxurious. It is really padded, with firmness. The seat allows baby‘s body to sink into the chair and be fully supported. There’s certainly plenty of growing space to allow for a long life span should you need it. The five point safety harness is fully adjustable to give a good fit. The pushchair also comes with a huge covering hood, while I say huge, it isn’t cumbersome, as it is a rather well-designed feature. It allows for excellent coverage to protect baby from the rain or heat of the sun’s rays. There is a neat viewing window in the top to allow you to be able to watch over your baby which puts the mind at ease.

        The footrest is a little different to others, in that it is mainly a plastic strip that is there to allow the backs of the feet to rest against it. I thought this was a little weird at first, but it didn’t cause a problem. My son preferred to have his feet up on the seat with his knees bent anyway, and the spacious pushchair allowed for this.

        - Seat and Backrest

        The pushchair has 3 recline positions, which are easy to change between. Behind the seat is a plastic hand hold that is to be squeezed together to adjust the seat. Once you have your desired position, you simply let go of the hand hold to lock it into place again.
        The seat is removable and is a machine washable fabric, which allows for a good thorough clean. This makes it easy and quick to get the seat in clean condition, ideal for spillages and accidents. It can be difficult to keep a pushchair seat clean, especially once you are at the stage where baby is self-feeding. Food and crumbs can become wedged in the edge of the seat and food can be become ground in, leaving a grubby appearance. So, the idea of being able to remove the seat cover to fully wash it is a fantastic idea that is advantageous. After several good washes and over a long time period of heavy use the seat has kept its colour and shape nicely.

        - Brakes and Handling

        There is a break leaver on each side behind the wheel, so you can press down on either with your foot, to take the break off you press the blue button with your foot, and the red button to put the break on. The wheels can be changed between swivel or fixed wheel by sliding a button on the side of the chases.

        The Confort Loola is a dream to push, as it is very smooth and easy to manoeuvre. One point to mention is that it is a heavy pushchair, so getting up and down steps may be difficult for some. I love the smooth feeling when pushing, as it really is fluid and gives me son a smooth ride. The handle is comfortable to hold adding to the comfort of being able to use for an extended amount of time. This pushchair has covered many miles on all different terrain and has been easy to push and manoeuvre no matter the surface in which it is on.
        While the pushchair is chunky and bulky looking, it doesn't feel heavy to push, rather it feels sturdy and it glides along. The only issue, which wasn't an issue for me is getting the pushchair up and down pavements to cross the road and the likes. While heavier than other pushchairs, I wouldn’t say it is as heavy as it looks.

        - Keep baby covered

        The pushchair features a large hood that is easy to use with a smooth movement to open and close. The hood is fully covering, being very large. This is a bonus, as it allows you to pull the hood over to provide shade and keep the sun out of baby’s eyes. It is also great for when baby is sleeping, as it can be pulled forward even further, as it isn’t attached to pushchair seat. This allows it to be moved to the position needed. I found this to be another fantastic feature that allowed me to keep my son covered from the elements when needed. It also provided cover from the bright light when taking a nap.

        - Rain cover
        The rain cover supplied zips onto the hood which keeps it perfectly in place, and the underneath it is secured by a press-stud. The quality here is excellent in keeping with the rest of the pushchair. The thickness is great and it doesn’t have that crumpled up look that cheaper rain covers can sometimes have. If kept neatly stored this provides a clear window for baby to view the world easily even when the weather is less than pleasant. I must say, though, that over the years of use this had I didn’t use the rain cover all that much, as I relied on the hood, which was sufficient enough for us. My son would keep dry with only his lower legs getting wet, not that I would stay out in the rain if it could be helped.

        - Shopping Basket

        The one slight downside I found with this pushchair was the shopping basket. The small mesh basket is a little difficult to assess, plus it is rather small. I would only really use it to keep my sons shoes in if they were taken off. The other odd items might have been put it, but not much. In the end I ended up removing this, as it didn't get much use.

        - Buckle up

        The pushchair features a 5 point fully adjustable safety harness. There are two positions on the pushchair seat for this to be moved when your baby grows, giving extra growing space. The safety buckle opens with a squeeze of the two sides together which releases the clip.
        The pushchair also features a bumper bar with a cover that is removable for washing. This is really important, as baby equipment needs to be kept clean, and often becomes soiled. The bumper bar is removable also, and if you would prefer and as baby grows you may wish to remove this. My son enjoyed holding onto the bumper bar and it gave him that added security. I also found it useful for attaching toys and the likes to keep him entertained.

        - Handle height

        The handle height is 95 cm – 105 cm. I found this to be a comfortable height for both my partner and I to use, making it easy for us to share the pushing.

        - How to fold the pushchair

        Above the basket is a large handle which is pulled upwards to fold the pushchair. The unit folds down on itself in a flat position, taking up limited space. Once folding down there is a clasp at the side to hold it together. To open, you can undo the clasp at the side and flick the pushchair open, use your foot to push down the bar at the back which is under the handle you opened it with, and this locks it back into place. This is easily done, yet not something which we needed to do often. The pushchair was kept up for ease of use.

        We used this pushchair for a good three plus years with my son. I loved how it looked, smart and stylish, and I loved how it performed, sleek and easy to use. Obviously this pushchair is more suited to those parents that walk and don’t rely on public transport. I wouldn’t even try to get this onto a bus or train, as it is big. As I leave the house on foot and walk a lot, this pushchair suited my lifestyle and needed perfectly. After much use, the pushchair was still in excellent condition to be sold on when we no longer needed it.

        I’m so glad I chose this pushchair, as it was the only mode of transportation needed for those early years. It was good to have a reliable pushchair that didn't need to be replaced or give me any niggles of any sort. Okay, so the shopping basket was a little small, but that wasn't an issue for us. I loved using this pushchair and my son was always comfortable with plenty of space. This was my dream pushchair.

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      • More +
        17.03.2014 11:00
        Very helpful
        (Rating)
        2 Comments

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        A fun and novel stress ball that eases stress and tension

        Whilst browsing on Amazon looking for a gift for my friend, I was left rubbing my head wondering what to get him. I love buying gifts for people, but I do get in a tizzy and have to get something that I perceive to be the perfect gift for the recipient. I can spend hours agonizing over what to go with. On Amazon, there's a multitude of products on offer with something for everyone. However, unless you have an idea of what you are looking for it can seem like a minefield. Eventually, I was just throwing random search phrases in, hoping something would appeal.

        After shuffling through Amazon's pages I was intrigued by a curled up purple man by the name of Paul. I decided to take a closer look, and decided that this would be a nice little gift to go alongside a few other bits. Paul is a purple, rubber man that is curled up holding his head in a sorry state, looking rather stressed. What a great idea for a stress ball. It certainly appealed to me. I just loved the concept. I also thought this would make a good gift for anyone, as we all need a bit of stress relief from time to time, as everyone is subject to stress with the many demands of life.


        When Stress ball Paul arrived, he was packaged in that toughened plastic that takes a lot of effort to get open, and often leaves a stressed feeling. I suppose this is a good way to test the product. I wasn't going to open it, as I wanted to give it as a present. However, I was curious of the texture and I just couldn't resist him. The glossy purple man looked as though he would be soft and sticky feeling.

        My curiosity had me battling with the annoyingly, frustrating packaging for what seemed like forever. I finally managed to release my new friend and I was ready to relieve some of that stress and tension. I found that he fits perfectly in the hand, and the fact that he is a curled up man makes him a good shape to manipulate in the hand. As a stress reliever it works brilliantly. He is soft and squishy and can take a good squeeze, and each and every time he reverts back to his original shape. This alone is impressive, as he certainly gets a good going over.

        The smooth texture feels nice in the hand, and the soft and pliable material gives enough resistance for it to benefit. I find Paul to be far, far better than an ordinary stress ball, not just because he is a purple, vivid, nude man with a smooth bottom, but because the shape fits comfortably in the hand and the extra nobly bits - his feet, are fun to manipulate, too. He is smooth all over apart from on the sole of his foot where he is imprinted with his designer's name - Suck UK.

        Paul is a great man that always gives me a smile every time I pick him up, and the purple colour is rather relaxing, as is the soft but resistant material he is constructed from. He is of a good quality, and worth the retail price of £7.50, as he's not just gimmicky and fun to look at, but he is actually fun and relaxing to handle.

        My son requires fidget toys, and Stress ball Paul certainly appeals to him. He often opts for Paul when he dives into the fidget drawer. My little boy is in fact stronger than I, and he has a stronger grip. He has certainly pulled and squeezed Paul about and tested him to the limits. Surprisingly, after months of torture Paul is still in great shape with no damage, cracks or signs of wear. If he is left rolling about on the carpet, or in a bitty drawer, he does attract fluff and the likes. When this happens, I simply give him a wash under the warm tap and this restores him back to his super smooth, clean self.

        I'm glad I decided to open Paul and keep him for myself, as he has proved to be a good little buy. Unlike other stress balls that get forgotten about or damaged after a short time, Paul is never to be forgotten and he is always happy to be squeezed to an inch of his life. Another advantage of Paul is that he doesn't roll away when placed on a surface, or if he is dropped, and the size and shape make him easy to fit into a pocket or bag to be available for those stressful times.

        I have only praise for Paul, as he's bold, cheeky and fun! I find him nice to manipulate when I'm concentrating or bored, as well as when feeling stressed. Stress ball Paul is a great companion to have to hand to help you through difficult times throughout the day. He is good to use in the home, or would be just as good in an office, or work environment. He makes a great gift, but why not get one for yourself? You won't be able to resist him. Relieve the stress and take it out on Paul.

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        • More +
          05.03.2014 11:30
          Very helpful
          (Rating)
          5 Comments

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          A makeup bag must-have that is great also for taking out and about

          I strive for smooth hairless skin, and I have been plucking my eyebrows since I was a teen. I already had a good set of tweezers from that I was more than happy with, however, I was attracted to these, as they are smaller making them ideal for travelling, and come with a tube for storage. I have heard many positive things about their Tweezerman tweezers, and I have a pair of their hairdressing scissors which have been a brilliant buy.

          The incredibly sharp tip is the sharpest I have ever come across, which has its advantages and disadvantages. With the tip being so sharp it is precise and easily grabs at the smallest and finest hairs that are only just visible to the eye, however, the downside is, if you're not careful it can nip the skin, with care and control though this isn't likely. I love the fact that they are so precise, and make it so much easier to grab those fine hairs.

          The mini tweezers are more affordable at £12 as opposed to the full size tweezers from their range which are priced around the £20 mark. This also encouraged me to purchase these over the more expensive larger ones. I must say that I favour these over the larger ones, as I find them easier to manage and handle. The small size is actually favourable for the ease of use, and these are the ones I reach for over my other full size set from their range. They are just the right size to hold comfortably.

          The tube that is supplied with the tweezers is a great idea, as it stores them away neatly and prevents them from becoming damaged or blunted. It is a far better way to keep the tip from becoming damaged, as often the small protective plastic tip cover that is standard with most tweezers is easily lost. I love the tube, as I always return the tweezers to the tube after use. This keeps them in good condition and protects the tip. Also, it makes it easier to find them in your makeup bag.

          Like all Tweezerman tweezers these are incredibly precise. They grab each hair individually, and allow for a fast a clean job of eradicated those unwanted hairs. There is nothing more frustrating than trying several times to grab a hair to fail or not actually pull it out. These take away that frustration, and I never miss a hair, even those fine fair ones. Getting close to the brow you can sometimes have one or two hairs that need to be removed, this doesn't cause worry, as I know that I can easily remove the one hair I want without messing up the brow line.

          These cute small sized tweezers come in several colours and patterns, allowing you to choose a design you like. I actually have the paw print design and the same ones again in just a mint green colour. I liked them that much that I actually have two pairs. That is testament to just how good they are. They are actually my favourites over all the different tweezers I've owned over the years. These have lasted me a good amount of time, too. Due to the fact that they are neatly stored away in their protective tube, they are less likely to be lost.

          While these may appear expensive when you can get tweezers for a pound, you certainly can tell the difference. Also with these, you will get years of service without the need to replace them. The stainless steel tip keeps its precision and this doesn't change over time and a heavy amount of use. The enamel coated handle also remains just as perfect, as the enamel coating protects the finish allowing it to keep its colour and pattern. So, not only do they continue to look like new, they continue to perform like new each and every time without fail.

          These tweezers come in a range of colours and patterns and may be found cheaper on Amazon depending on the design you go for. They are the best pair of tweezers you'll ever own, and you won't need to replace them. Inferior brands often need replacing, making them no cheaper as you need to buy new when they become blunt. These will continue performing to a high standard time and time again.

          To make the task of tweezing easy wash the eyebrow area with warm water, or pluck after showering. It is best the area is clean and free from products and the warm water opens the pores making plucking slightly less painful. Clean the tip of the tweezers from hair between plucking, this can be done with a clean tissue. I either wipe mine on a tissue after each hair removal to remove the hair, or I blow the hair from off of the tip, and sometimes I use hot water in the basin and just swish the tweezers through the water. After use it is best to clean them and ensure they are dry before placing them back into their tube.

          These are my all-time favourite tweezers that I wouldn't be without. They not only look cute, they are incredibly accurate and take the frustration and stress out the tedious task of plucking eyebrows.

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          • More +
            26.02.2014 10:25
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            There's Nairn Better

            As I am a vegetarian and an active full time Mum I like to try to follow a healthy diet that provides me with energy. Although I have a sweet tooth, I aim to keep my diet balanced in order to remain healthy. I try to shop once a week to save time and money. I generally buy some form of savoury crackers to keep for the end of the week when the bread has run out. I also like to keep crackers in for snacks and packed lunches that have a long shelf life and are easy to store.

            I'm always looking for healthy options, as not only do I try to maintain good health, I also like to provide my son with a nutrient-rich diet that is healthy. There's a vast range of crackers to choose from, some which are healthier than others. I like to vary my options and try different foods to keep it interesting. I decided to try the Nairn's Oatcakes, which are available in a few different varieties. I opted for the Fine Milled Oat cakes, as I thought these would be delicate and easy to eat.

            The Oat Cakes are packaged within a box, which prevents them from becoming broken or crumbled, as well as keeping them fresh. The box holds 250g containing six clear packets of individually packaged Oatcakes. Each pack contains eight Oat Cakes that are easy to open, even for little ones. Having them individually wrapped is a great idea, as it allows them to be stored for longer, as well as making it easy to pop a packet into a bag to take out.

            I am unsure as to why they provide them in packs of eight, as I think this is too much for a single serving for some. Luckily my little boy is happy to share, and we have half each. The Oat Cakes are thin as they are finely milled, and they offer a crispy treat. They have a pleasant creamy oat taste and texture that is easy to eat. The baked Oat Cakes are a naturally healthy option, as they consist of wholegrain oats and are wheat free. They are also free from GM ingredients, artificial colourings, flavourings and preservatives and are suitable for vegetarians and vegans. They consist of few ingredients which is always good as far as I'm concerned.

            Nairn's Oatcakes are a good source of fibre, and the carbohydrates provide natural energy. The wholegrain oats slowly release energy to keep you feeling energized throughout the day. This is one of the reasons why I regularly buy Nairn's products, as they are filling and provide energy. The Fine Milled Oat Cakes make for a great snack, or as part of a healthy lunch. I actually enjoy eating these plain, as they are scrumptious. I also find that they go well with sweet or savoury toppings. This makes them incredibly versatile. Personally, I enjoy these with cheese and salad, peanut butter or chocolate spread.

            I often take a packet out with me when we go out for the day, as they can be eaten plain straight from the packet. As they are filling and release energy, I always opt for these over any other savoury cracker. My 4 year old son is rather partial to these Oat Cakes, and he will more than happily eat an entire pack of eight. He actually goes crazy for these. Although, I find four is sufficient enough. I find these the perfect snack, with only one or two needed to fill the gap, and for a part of a lunch where four Oat Cakes is enough for one serving.

            Nairn's produce a range of Oat Cakes, biscuits and Oat Bakes which are all irresistible. They are widely available in supermarkets and Holland and Barratt also stock them, and they can be found in the savoury aisle among the biscuits and crackers. The boxes are easy to identify with the product name being prominent. For some unknown reason the Fine Milled Oat Cakes are the lowest priced in their range at my local supermarket, you can expect to pay anywhere between 0.65p to £1.29 for a 250g box depending on where they are purchased from.

            To view the full range, visit their website:

            www.nairns-oatcakes.com

            Ingredients for those interested:

            Wholegrain oats (84%), sea salt, raising agent (sodium bicarbonate), sustainable palm oil.
            For a sweet or savoury treat try Nairn's Oatcakes for a healthy and filling option.

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            • More +
              30.01.2014 10:14
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              An indulgent skin product that gently exfoliate naturally

              Like many of us showering for me is a daily ritual. I like to wash away the daily grind. It is also the one time during the day that I can indulge and pamper my skin. I like to feel clean and refreshed and I like to know that what I am using on my skin is kind to my skin as well as the planet.

              The skin is the largest organ in the body and whatever we use on it is absorbed into the skin. I avoid using chemicals and synthetic products where possible. Burt's Bees has become one of my favourite brands for skin care products as they use natural ingredients and no synthetic fragrances are used in their products, so they smell great too.

              After sampling this exfoliating body wash in a gift set I was so impressed with it that I decided to order a full sized bottle. Although it is quite expensive at £11.74 for 350ml, I knew that it was worth the high price tag, as it is far kinder to my skin and it leaves it feeling silky smooth. I'm also not as extravagant with products that are more costly so I find they last well. I also believe that you get what you pay for, and with Burt's Bees products you certainly do get a treat. I really admire their ethos as their products are sourced and produced from natural ingredients and they are cruelty free, which is something that is important to me.

              The exfoliating body wash is housed in a cylindrical bottle that is sourced from 80% post consumer waste. Burt's Bees use the minimal amount of packaging on their products; the material of the bottle is rather thin making the bottle pliable. The contents are sourced and produced from 92.02% earth friendly natural ingredients. The body wash is packed with natural goodness, and no nasty chemicals are present here. The bottle is very tactile and it fits comfortable in the palm of my hand, it has a press down lid which is favourable with me.

              I'm not generally a fan of exfoliating products as I find that they are too abrasive and damaging to the skin. I am however a huge Burt's Bees fan, so I had high expectations and I was looking forward to using this body wash. Exfoliating beads in commercial big-brand body washes and facial scrubs are generally made from plastic, which are damaging to the environment as these end up in the sea and they are non biodegradable, meaning they are harmful to nature, the environment and creatures.

              Jojoba beads are a natural exfoliant and therefore they will be a lot gentler on the skin, they are completely biodegradable and are a renewable resource. The prominent ingredients in this body wash are jojoba beads and royal jelly, the jojoba beads gently exfoliate while the royal jelly moisturises. Exfoliating washes are designed to leave the skin smooth and help even skin tone.

              The wash can be applied using your hands or you can use a sponge or wash cloth, I personally prefer to use my hands when washing with an exfoliating product as I find it is easier to wash over the skin and the beads don't get lost in the sponge. The wash has a subtle fruity scent to it, only a little squeeze is needed and only a small amount of the product is needed. The soap is toffee brown in colour and it has a thin consistency to it, I always worry that it will slip through my fingers, however gently rubbing it together in my hands creates a frothy creamy white lather. The exfoliating beads feel incredibly gentle against the skin, but they still produce good results. The soap feels creamy and moisturising as I massage it into the skin and the jojoba beads effectively but gently exfoliate the skin leaving it feeling soft and clean. Emerging from the shower my skin feels soft to the touch and it feels nourished and conditioned. The gentle scent is still present on the skin but it is very subtle.

              I like to use this at the end of the day to remove dead skin and rejuvenate my skin, it is mild enough to use daily and the beads are gentle enough to use on any skin type as my skin is prone to drying and can feel a little delicate at times. I have also used this on my face at times as it is gentle enough even for the most delicate areas of skin. It doesn't scratch or tug at the skin and it doesn't' damage the skin either. I really like this exfoliating body wash as it is a pleasure to use and it leaves my skin feeling cleansed, nourished and radiant. I am on my second bottle of this now and it lasts well as a little goes a long way so it can be used sparingly. I would rather spend more on a product that is sourced and produced from natural ingredients that is kind to the planet and my skin.

              The body wash can be used on a daily basis as it is mild enough; it is gentle on the skin as it is made from natural ingredients so I don't worry about it drying my skin. I find that I use it most days before retiring for the evening, as it removes all the grime and any products that are present on my skin; it leaves my skin feeling incredibly soft so it has become a favourite.

              The high price tag may be off putting, but once you try this body wash you will be amazed at how soft it leaves your skin.

              92.09% natural
              12 fl oz / 350 ml Bottle
              £11.74

              You can find out more about Burt's Bees and see their full range of products on their website:

              www.burtsbees.co.uk

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