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Carrie23

Carrie23
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Member since: 23.10.2011

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      18.01.2013 19:46
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      A great convertible handbag for everyday use.

      ~ ~ Warehouse Studded Twistlock Bag ~ ~

      The Warehouse Studded Twistlock Bag is a convertible satchel that comes in neutral mustard color. This bag is part of the Warehouse fall/winter collection but it can also be worn in early spring.

      The structured satchel features a fold over twist lock closure. It has a studded flat top with bronze studs around the perimeter. It is made by synthetic faux-leather (100% PU) with both textured and plain patterns. On the outside, the front and back panels have a snake skin effect whilst the top flap closure, the bottom and the side surfaces are made by plane, suede-like material.

      This bag measures approximately 32cm x 28cm x 12cm (Width x Height x Depth). It is a convertible handbag with a top handle and an adjustable and removable shoulder strap. The shoulder strap connects like a belt, with a buckle on one end and 3 holes on the other end. It is long enough to make a great satchel bag, or it can be switched to cross-body bag. The strap length is 1.24 m in total and the distance between the holes is 4 cm, therefore it can be worn at 116 cm, 120 cm or 124 cm.

      On the inside, the bag has one main compartment with beige internal lining made by 10% Cotton and 90% Polyester. There is a large zip pocket with the gold plated Warehouse logo attached to the fabric right below the zipper. The top opening of the main compartment has adjustable size, controlled by two horizontal straps that are positioned one on each side of the top edge.

      The RRP of the bag is £38 and it is currently on sale for £17 at the official Warehouse website (www.warehouse.co.uk). Also available with a reduced price at Debenhams and Asos.com.


      ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

      It's a very practical and convenient handbag, roomy enough to carry safely my personal items. The design is pretty and I really love the combination of the textured snake-effect and the plain sides. With studded details and a stylish textured design, this bag can go from the office to after hours.

      The bag cannot be matched with all outfits because of the unique mustard colour and the bronze gold details. It goes great with black outfits and jeans but not with neutrals like cream and beige.

      The good quality material is a great advantage and provides long-lasting use. The handbag looks sturdy and despite the everyday use, it's still in great shape. The flap closure is secure and keeps my belongings safely stored inside the bag.

      The shoulder strap provides multiple carrying options and it's super convenient when I need to have both hands free. Even though it is not an essential piece in a woman's handbag collection, it's definitely a stylish convertible bag with original design and great quality.


      ~ ~ Summary ~ ~

      I think this handbag is one of the most stylish everyday bags that I've purchased this year. It has everything I need for a daily handbag: quality, style, space and durability. I am very happy with my purchase and I would thoroughly recommend it.

      Thank you for reading!

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      • More +
        01.01.2013 17:59
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        Recommended only if you find a good offer.

        ~ ~ Asos Nude Quilted Across Body Bag ~ ~

        ASOS collection offers a wide selection of fashion items, like dresses, jackets, footwear, accessories, handbags etc. This is an across body bag from of the Asos collection for women.

        The bag is nude pink in colour, with metallic gold-tone details. It has a fold-over flap closure, featuring a twist lock made by shiny metal.

        The leather-look bag is made by 100% Polyurethane. It has a diagonal quilted design with a double-stitching detail in nude colour. The bag has one main compartment on the inside and a large zip pocket on the back internal surface. The internal lining is made by a bright, thin and semi-transparent polyester fabric. The fabric is a little loose inside the main compartment and doesn't look very sturdy and durable.

        The handbag has a plaited chain strap in gold-tone with nude leather-look material going through the chain links. The strap is fixed on the bag and can't be removed, but it can be tucked inside the main compartment.


        ~ ~ Useful details ~ ~

        This bag is a medium size and measures approximately 23cm x 16cm x 8cm (Width x Height x Depth). It's a very good size and can easily fit the essentials: phone, keys, wallet, lipstick etc without looking overstuffed.

        The strap length is 1.30 m (51") in total, it is fixed on the bag and non-adjustable. The strap drop measures 65 centimeters (around 25½"). The strap drop is the distance between the middle of the strap at shoulder height and the end of the strap at the top of the bag's body.

        The bag is made in China.


        ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

        I picked up the Asos Nude Quilted Across Body Bag online from Asos.com for only £5 which I thought was an absolute bargain. The retail price of this bag is around £16.

        The top folds over securely and the chain strap has a very convenient length that allows the bag to be worn in different ways. It is primarily designed to be carried at the shoulder, or it can be worn as an across body bag. Alternatively, you can hide the chain strap inside the bag and hold it as a clutch.

        There are many different shades of nude and if I want to match the bag with my shoes I want them to have similar shades. This bag comes in a pale champagne pink/nude colour that fits perfectly with my nude peep-toes. It's not a simple beige-y nude shade based on soft browns. The colour is very light and neutral with a hint of pink. Therefore, I think that this design is more appropriate for the summer because of its bright colour but it can also be worn in the winter and create a nice contrast.

        One of the aspects that I don't like about this bag is the internal lining which is thin and loose inside the bag. I am usually searching my stuff by feeling, and my things get tangled and lost when I am trying to reach something in this bag due to the 'baggy' lining.

        Also, I dislike the feel of the poor quality material used on the bag. It has a slight smell of plastic and the PU material feels cheap and doesn't look very sturdy and durable.


        ~ ~ Conclusion ~ ~

        Other than the poor quality material, this is a pretty handbag and has a very convenient size. It is certainly a cheap choice with a nice design that you can easily match with many outfits. Considering the £5 that I paid for it, I think it was a good purchase. However, I am not sure if I would recommend buying this bag at full price.

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        • Oasis Abigail Ballet Flats / Shoes / 113 Readings / 112 Ratings
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          26.12.2012 21:14
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          They may hurt your feet at the first few wearings.

          Oasis is a British brand founded in 1991, offering a wide range of products from dresses and clothing items to stylish shoes and accessories.


          ~ ~ Oasis Abigail Ballet Flats ~ ~

          These are ladies shoes, black in colour and have a glossy outer surface. The design of the shoes is flat with a pointed toe style and a low-cut vamp, featuring a metal pin buckle fastening in gold-tone. The pumps have a low cut design that comes close to the front showing the toe cleavage which is very flattering in my opinion. The design is not very narrow at the sides of the shoe and leaves a good portion of the upper part of the foot exposed.

          The internal surface of the shoes is very smooth and has a shiny metallic gold-tone finish. The brand label is printed on the inside sole. The cover around the back of the foot is made by soft fabric in light beige colour that looks like synthetic suede.

          The pumps have a low wedge heel that narrows at the bottom, following the slightly curved shape of the closed back. The heel is around one inch high and it's very easy to walk in.

          The flat shoes have been crafted with patent leather-look style and they are made by 100% Polyurethane. The sole is thick and it's made from plastic but it loses its grip easily. The shoe soles are very slippery on some floor tiles or inclined surfaces, so I added extra anti-slip soles to prevent slipping and walk safely.


          ~ ~ Availability & Price ~ ~

          The Oasis Abigail Ballet flats are available in sizes UK 3-9 and they cost £38.00 in full price. Currently they can be found on offer from asos.com for £26 but a limited size range is available.


          ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

          Although I was familiar with the brand, this is my first Oasis pair. I like wearing flat pumps because they are comfortable, very easy to wear and style, plus they look cute. This is the reason why I am always looking for new designs to add to my footwear collection. This particular design is very different from the other ballet-style shoes that I own. The classic pump silhouette is enhanced by the pin buckle, adding more style to this unique design. The flattering pointed toe design and the glossy material make it appropriate for all occasions: for the working place, for casual nights out, evening coffees, house parties etc.

          I am size 6 to 6.5, depending on the shoes and since there are no half sizes for this design, I purchased size 6. The shoe slides on and off my foot with ease and the size fits very well.

          The shoes are quite easy to keep clean by simply wiping the surface with a damp cloth. I have noticed that dust shows on the glossy surface of the shoes, so I am storing mine in the shoe box to keep them dust-free. So far I am very happy with the quality and even though I've been wearing them a lot for about two months now, they look like new.

          Although I like the design of these flat shoes, there are some downsides to them and they might not fit everyone's level of comfort and style.

          I ordered my Oasis flats online and I didn't have the chance to try them on before purchasing. The first time I wore these shoes, I experienced some discomfort. I found that the material looks and feels a little stiff and the shoes don't fit my feet comfortably when I wear them. The soft suede-like material protects my heel but the rigid front gave me hurtful blisters on my little toes at the first few wearings. Now they have softened up a bit and my toes don't feel so squeezed into the shoe. However, I think that this isn't a pair of shoes for women who choose comfort over fashion.

          Finally, since the material isn't very flexible I suggest wearing ankle or knee highs with these shoes to protect your feet.


          ~ ~ Summary ~ ~

          Overall, I like the design of these flat pumps a lot. They are easy to style and they look good with almost every outfit. However, I wouldn't recommend them for walking long distance or dancing.

          Thank you for reading! :)

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            20.12.2012 14:39
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            A bag which will compliment most outfits!

            ~ ~ Ted Baker Galar Bow Clutch Bag - Black ~ ~

            I purchased the Galar bow clutch bag at the beginning of the summer season in May 2012. It is an evening oversized clutch with a very unique and stylish woven straw pattern, designed by Ted Baker. My clutch bag is in black colour, but the same design is also available in pink.

            The bow clutch features a rattan flap over closure and a glossy black base material that creates a nice contrast. The woven straw overlay covers the flap closure and the ¾ of the back surface. The oversized black bow detail stands out at the front, adding some extra style to the overall look of the bag. The TB signature logo lettering at front is made with metallic rose gold finish.

            The oversized clutch bag measures approximately 35cm at widest x 19.5cm tall at center x 3.5cm deep. The bag features a magnetic closure device and the flap over front of the bag opens to reveal one spacious main compartment. The rattan cover is stiffer than the rest of the bag and doesn't open very wide, however you can still have easy access to the contents. The internal lining is made by fabric, imprinted with floral pattern that is extremely attractive and looks like a real life picture of flowers and plants. Inside the clutch there is an 18 cm wide interior zip pocket which has a very decent size comparing to my other clutches. On the front inside part of the bag you'll find three convenient mini pockets for your credit cards and notes. The clutch is quite deep and has enough space that can easily fit my 2 phones, purse, lippy, keys and there is still plenty of room inside.

            It doesn't come with a shoulder chain strap like many other evening clutch bags. This one is designed to be used only as a clutch, not across the shoulder.

            The bag design is unique and it looks fashionable and expensive. It's a practical, roomy and well made evening bag that fits everything. It is light in weight and according to the label inside, the woven straw overlay is made of 100% Rattan, the internal lining is 100% Polyester and the trim is 100% Polyurethane. The clutch bag is manufactured in China.

            One drawback with this bag is that the surface of the glossy black PU material can easily be scratched and I've already noticed some scratches from use. Additionally, I would like to see a dust bag with the clutch but it came in a regular clear plastic bag instead.

            Ted Baker products can be found in the official brand shops and at other places like John Lewis, House of Fraser, Asos etc. I ordered mine online from asos.com and I paid £49 at full price. Also available in the range are the Tote bags with the same rattan upper and the patent bow detail. However, this range was part of the spring/summer collection and it's currently unavailable at the aforementioned websites.

            Overall, it is a beautiful and chic designer bag. I think that for £49, the clutch bag is a bit overpriced and you are probably paying the Ted Baker brand name with this price. However, I have to say that the quality is great and the chic design of the bag can compliment most outfits.

            Care Instructions: It can be cleaned with a sponge.

            Ted Baker official website: http://www.tedbaker.com

            ~ ~ Thanks for reading! ~ ~

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            • Ciate Caviar Manicure / Make Up / 73 Readings / 71 Ratings
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              18.12.2012 21:08
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              For a professional looking manicure!

              ~ ~ Ciaté and the Caviar Collection ~ ~


              Ciaté is a professional nail care brand with innovative nail products. This year, they launched their newest manicure sets (Ciaté Caviar and Velvet) that quickly became extremely popular. The manicure sets were sold out almost immediately at the official website of the brand and currently they can only be purchased from a few online retailers and amazon.co.uk.

              The Caviar manicure is created with microbeads applied on the top of the nail varnish to provide a three dimensional effect to the nails. The Caviar manicure is currently available in 3 collections:

              - Black Pearls: with a black base polish and dark microbeads in black, dark blue and silver shades.
              - Mother of Pearl: with white nail polish and white microbeads.
              - Rainbow: with a light pink base coat and colourful pearls.


              ~ ~ Ciaté Caviar Manicure Set ~ ~


              I was looking for a special nail polish to wear during Christmas and I discovered the new trend with the caviar pearls on the nails. I thought it was an absolutely fantastic idea to create a 3D effect with tiny pearls on my nails for Christmas.

              Ciaté Caviar set retails for £18 but it's not very easy to find their products in shops, so I went online looking for this nail set and even though it was sold out on the e-shop of the official website, I was fortunate enough to find it available on Amazon.co.uk for the same price. I also discovered that the full collection is available on Asos with free delivery.

              I ordered the Black Pearls Manicure set online and it came on my hands last Monday. Each Caviar Manicure Set contains:

              - One bottle of black Ciaté nail polish for the base layer
              - One bottle containing the pearls. Black, blue, silver and light blue microbeads with a shiny metallic finish are mixed in this bottle.
              - A plastic funnel

              The nail set is packaged in a cardboard box with the product details on the front and the directions of use at the back. The box opens to reveal the transparent plastic packaging that holds the nail polish and the pot with the caviar pearls. The top of the packaging is cleverly designed as a tray that can be placed under the nail during the manicure process, to collect all the excess beads that don't stick on the nail. A small funnel is also included in the box, used to refill the pearl bottle with the microbeads that are collected in the tray during the manicure process.A leaflet is found inside the packaging with full directions on how to complete the caviar manicure. In addition, you can find some tips and ideas on how to create new styles and make the manicure last longer.

              The Ciaté nail polish comes in a beautifully designed transparent glass bottle that holds 13.5ml of product. The deep black nail lacquer is visible through the clear glass bottle. The large curved paint pot is easy to hold and has a tall, slim lid. A black bow is attached to the front side of the bottle, right above the oval shaped label with the brand logo. The product details are displayed at the back. The top lid with the brush is easy to twist, with the flat brush attached to the lid inside for precise application. It's a good quality brush and I find it very easy to control the amount of product and for best coverage and precision.
              The pearls come in a similar bottle and the mini funnel is made from plastic, with a wide top that narrows at the bottom so that it fits inside the Caviar pearl's bottle.

              This unique shaped bottle with the curved design, the chic bow and the tall top lid gives the overall bottle the look of a high quality professional nail polish.


              ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~


              The Ciaté Caviar manicure set is a professional product and it's more expensive than other brands. Since it is a highly priced product, I expected something very special from the Caviar experience.

              Generally, I am a fan of dark shades for the winter and I ordered this manicure set to give it a try. The "Black Pearl" caviar set has a deep black nail polish that's used for the base layers, and metallic pearls that provide a different, festive look to the overall manicure.

              The Caviar Manicure can be created on top of all the nails, however I applied the pearls on the ring fingers only, and I painted the rest of my nails with the black nail polish. I think that the look of the caviar pearls on all of my nails would look perfect for the Christmas Day or New Year's Eve, but it's not ideal for my every day look.

              I realized that this black nail polish is a professional product from the first layer that I applied on my nails. On application, it runs smoothly and the brush is well-designed and easy to control. I need to apply two layers in order to achieve the desired deep black shade on the nails. The nail polish itself dries very fast. In 5 just minutes after applying the top coat, my nails are dry and they look gorgeous.

              However, the nails with the pearls need considerably more time to dry out. Ciaté recommends 15 - 20 minutes drying time but I was extra careful with the pearled nails all day long. I would say that this is a special occasion manicure, appropriate for holidays when you don't have to do housework or use your hands for cleaning, washing dishes etc.

              The nail polish definitely needs a top coat to last longer. However, I wouldn't recommend a top coat layer on top of the pearls. It looks better if you apply a clear nail polish only at the tip of the nails to keep the 3D metallic effect of the pearls. This way you can achieve the gorgeous effect of individual pearls sitting on the nail, while the top coat layer will make the pearls look like they are stuck together.

              ~ ~ The Pearls ~ ~

              The application of the pearls is very easy. They are applied on top of the second layer of the nail polish. Place your finger over the plastic tray provided with the manicure set and sprinkle the pearls over the wet nail polish. Make sure that the pearls have covered the entire surface of the nail and lightly press them with your fingers into the wet polish to ensure that they are kept in place. Once finished, apply a top coat on the nail tips and leave your nails to dry completely. Place the mini funnel into the pearl bottle and pour in the beads that were collected in the tray. This simple process should be repeated for each nail, however I applied the pearls on the ring fingers only.

              The manicure stayed relatively chip free for around a week. I am really satisfied with the longevity of the nail polish itself. I am also using the nail polish without the pearls and it lasts even longer. I was reading many reviews about the pearls, saying that they don't last but from my experience they looked great for at least 3 days.

              Since I am right handed, some pearls started to fall off my right hand nail on the third day but my left hand manicure remained in a very good condition for a week. I think that the top coat around the end of the nail worked well and increased the durability of the manicure.

              Removing the nail polish using a regular nail polish remover is very easy, but I found it quite difficult to remove the beads and I had to soak my nails in the nail polish remover liquid.


              ~ ~ Summary ~ ~


              Overall, I am very pleased with the results of this manicure set. The end result is very much what I expected when I purchased the product, it looks professional and I was surprised by the high quality of the black nail polish. It is a little impractical for daily use but it's an amazing idea for special occasions and in my opinion, it's the ideal manicure for Christmas day or New Year's Eve.

              Even though I am very happy with this product, it is an expensive manicure set. Next time, instead of buying a new set I intend to buy colourful beads from the local store and use them with the high quality nail polish that I own.

              Thank you for reading!

              This review is also posted on ciao under my username sweetybi.

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              • Candy Store Coin Purse / Handbag / 91 Readings / 89 Ratings
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                10.12.2012 14:51
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                Very practical for loose coins.

                Candy Store is a new fashion brand, known for its colourful silicone accessories. The Candy Store products are available in a variety of colours and sizes. The product range includes the Purse Mirror, the Eyeglass case, the Wallet, the Cosmetic Pouch and the Coin Purse. All the products are made from the same soft silicone material.

                This specific design comes in 8 bright and fun colours: Bubblegum (pink), Grape (purple), Peppermint (light blue), Cherry (red), Orange, Apple (green), Lemon (yellow) and Licorice (black). The colours names are inspired by fruits and candies and there is also a limited edition design every month. This month's "flavour" is called Candy Cane, featuring a candy cane design.

                The coin purse is normally priced at £9.00. I am always looking for better offers so I purchased mine during the summer sales for around £5.00, in the cherry red colour. It is a fun little coin purse made from soft silicone material with a kiss-lock closure.

                The material is very flexible and the stainless steel frame and clasp at the top ensures the secure closing. The silver bar around the purse is covered by silicone material and it's only visible at the side hinges as it extends towards the base of the purse. The unique purse design has rounded edges and the top clasp closure comprises by two oversized silicone spheres, designed as extensions of the purse. The "C" logo of the Candy Store brand is embossed at the front side of the purse, as a signature of its authenticity.

                This cute purse is appropriate for women and teen girls due to the colourful and pretty design. Because of its size, it nicely fits into my handbag and it's also a very practical solution for my evening bags and clutches. The coin purse dimensions are: 3.5'' x 3.25'' x 1.5'' (W x H x D). On the inside, the mini pouch has one single compartment without internal lining. There is only one layer of silicone and the internal surface is made of the same material that constitutes the external side of the purse. The design is super light and the company states that the material is odour and UV resistant. Indeed, the purse doesn't have the smell of plastic or rubber and I have been using this since August without noticing any fading of the colour. The red colour is still bright and vivid, like the first day that I bought it.

                With this size and shape, the small purse only suitable for coins or rolled money. It is very handy and just the right size to keep my loose change in it, but credit cards or keys don't fit in the small compartment of the mini pouch. The silicone surface is waterproof and durable and it feels very soft and smooth on touch. The sturdy material doesn't stain easily and I have found that it's very easy to clean with a damp paper towel and if necessary it can be rinsed with water and air dried.

                Overall, it's a very practical and versatile accessory that can be used to hold your loose coins. The silicone pouch is available in a wide variety of bright colours to choose from.

                According to the label, the coin purse is made in China.

                Thank you for reading!

                This review may be posted on other sites in the future.

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                  05.12.2012 19:03
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                  Good fit with warm internal lining.

                  ~ ~ Introduction ~ ~

                  My feet get freezing cold during the winter and I am looking for the best ways to keep them warm and dry. I hate going through the day with wet feet and if my shoes get soaked from the rain, it's impossible to keep my feet warm for the rest of the day.

                  Waterproof wellington boots have proved to be a great footwear solution for me. I love wellies because they are waterproof and I am not afraid to walk in a rainy day. I also wear them at work because sometimes I have to go on site and my training shoes or my leather boots are not appropriate to walk in the mud.

                  This is my second pair of wellies, I already own a pair of Hunter boots from last year. I decided to buy new boots for this winter and I ordered the wellies online a few weeks ago, with around 35% off discount from the ASOS website (asos.com). I paid £35 for them and the retail price is £55.

                  The Paul's Boutique wellies are called "Pellies" and they are available in 3 colours. I purchased the glossy black quilted boots and a similar design without the quilted pattern is available in navy colour with a pink strip and pink colour with navy trim.


                  ~ ~ Packaging ~ ~

                  The boots turned up inside a cute oversized cardboard box in deep purple colour, with a plastic handle at one side. The brand name and a brief reference of the main details about the product were written on the top and bottom of the box with large pink letters.

                  The hard cardboard box offered a good protection to the boots, although it arrived in a damaged condition with bent corners and horizontally ripped on the top. However, the overall rectangle shape of the box was retained and I was happy to see that the boots were very well protected and safe inside the box.

                  The wellington boots were packaged in a clear plastic bag and they had cardboard inserts to help them keep their shape while they were inside the box.


                  ~ ~ Paul's Boutique Black Quilted "Pellies" ~ ~

                  The Paul's Boutique black quilted wellies design is described as knee-high, with a pull on style. In fact, the top strip comes a bit lower than the knee, around 1.7 inches lower than the classic Hunter boots. Here is a list of the boot measurements:

                  - Shaft measures approximately 14 1/4 " from arch.
                  - Boot opening measures approximately 14 3/4 " around
                  - Heel measures approximately 3/4 "
                  - Approximately 14 ½" overall.

                  Unfortunately the measurements were not available online so I measured the boots myself for the UK 7 size that I purchased. Paul's Boutique Quilted Wellies come in sizes 2-9. I am size 6-6.5 and I bought one size larger to accommodate the insole and the thick socks that I am wearing with the wellies.

                  The rain boots have an almond toe design and they have large anti-slip rubber soles for sure footing on any surface.

                  These wellies by Paul's Boutique have been made from 100% rubber which is durable and waterproof. The soles are also made from rubber and the internal lining is 100% cotton.

                  The boots are made out of glossy rubber and have a thick fabric lining on the inside that keeps the feet warm and cosy. The material looks sturdy and well made, with a quilted pattern on the outside and the designer label printed at the upper front part in bright pink/fuchsia and black colours. There is a gold decorative metal back zipper, which starts from just below the top strip and stops at the ankle height. The fabric surrounding the metallic part of the zipper is also fuchsia. At the back heel, below the faux zipper, there is a Paul's Boutique logo label similar to the one at the front.

                  The interior lining is also bright pink in colour, branded with the "PAUL'S BOUTIQUE" logo pattern which is printed on the fabric in dark blue colour. The thick lining has the same quilted pattern, covering in full the sides and the bottom of the boots. The insole that fits inside the bottom of the rain boots is made of a thick material and a self-adhesive fabric top cover. The footbed is soft and comfortable and it can be easily removed to dry faster if it gets wet from the feet moisture.

                  The removable insoles can be washed or replaced which is probably going to be necessary after some time. In my wellies I found that after almost a month of everyday use, the fabric that's in contact with my foot detaches from the top surface of the insole. I had exactly the same problem with my old Hunters and I am just going to buy a new pair of insoles and replace the existing ones when they wear out.

                  Outer Material: 100% Rubber
                  Lining Material: 100% Cotton

                  Product Code: 246316


                  ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

                  It's a good pair of wellies that I am planning to wear a lot this winter. I wear my rain boots with skinny jeans, or with leggings or black tights and I always tuck my pants into them. These are easy to style, appropriate for casual looks and they go with any every day outfit.

                  I usually put on regular cotton socks, even if I wear tights underneath to protect my feet (and the tights) from the boots and keep my feet warm. If it's too cold, I wear double socks and it works great keeping my feet warmer than usual.

                  The thick internal cotton lining is a great advantage. It offers warmth and extra cosiness and due to the lightweight design, I can walk long distances without feeling tired. They are lighter than my previous wellies and so my feet don't hurt at the end of the day.

                  It is said that rubber is not breathable, therefore feet get wet from the inside from the trapped sweat. I experienced that with my old rubber boots that didn't have internal lining. The Paul's Boutique wellies have performed great so far and my feet feel quite warm in them. However, I haven't tried them in snow yet to see how they perform!

                  The wellies are very comfortable to wear in general and I am wearing them every day when it's raining. Sometimes I have a slight difficulty with stairs when they have a small tread length, because the outsole is thick and stiff.

                  They look durable and well made and the glossy quilted design is beautiful. The faux gold zipper on the back makes a nice contrast but I would prefer them without it since they are pull on boots and it's just a decorative detail.

                  The length is shorter than I expected, I think that the top should come a bit higher since it's called a "knee-high" design. The actual knee-high boots make my calves look slim - as they really are - but I've noticed that these boots make my calves look bigger.


                  ~ ~ How to look after them ~ ~

                  The rain boots are easy to clean. The instructions say to wipe clean with a damp cloth.

                  I have only used my boots in rain and I only have to wipe them and they become shiny again. They don't get dirty easily since the water doesn't stick on the glossy rubber surface. Only once I had to walk through mud and they had mud at the bottom and some splashes at lower sides. I cleaned them with water while the mud was still wet and then I let them dry naturally in my room. After a quick online search I found that they should stay away from the heat and the direct sunlight.


                  ~ ~ Overall ~ ~

                  The rain boots are a nice fit and I am very pleased with their quality. They come at a reasonable price and at the time of writing they are on offer and can be purchased for £35 from the ASOS website. The discounted price is great considering the high quality, however there are many wellington boots in the market that cost less.

                  I am awarding Paul's Boutique Quilted Wellies four out of five stars.


                  Thank you for reading !

                  This review was also posted on ciao under my username "sweetybi".

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                    03.12.2012 22:13
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                    Advantages

                    • Reliability

                    Disadvantages

                    Good printing paper at a reasonable price.

                    Stora Enso is a global company producing packaging, paper and wood products. The company's focus is to create environmental-friendly products, made by renewable materials that will be able to compete with the non-renewable products in the paper market. The company produces a variety of high quality office papers for all purposes. The MultiCopy range is made by using Totally Chlorine Free (TCF) pulp and it includes the Original, the Colour Ranger and the Inkjet printing papers.

                    ~ ~ The product ~ ~

                    The MultiCopy Original A4 paper is a high quality standard printing paper, available at the following substance ranges: 75, 80, 90, 100, 115, and 160 g/m². I am always using the classic 80 g/m2 sheet weight paper for home printing and this is the one I am reviewing. It is considered to be a medium thickness paper for office printing and 80 g/m2 is the most common weight used for printing and copying paper. It's a multi-purpose paper and according to the product specifications, it is suitable for laser and inkjet printers, copiers and fax machines.

                    The ColorLock technology, as the name suggests, "locks" the colour into the paper aiming to deliver more vivid colours, bolder blacks and quick ink drying.

                    The paper comes in standard A4 format (size 210x297 mm), packed in boxes of 500 sheets. Each ream wrapped pack costs around £5.

                    The product is made in Sweden.

                    ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

                    I find this brand of papers really good for my needs. It's a great paper to use for routine printing or high-volume printouts. I use this for printing, copying and taking hand written notes at home.
                    During the printing process, it runs through smoothly without causing any problems and takes the ink very well from my Epson printer. The printing quality is high for black and white or colour prints. The colours are rich and they stay true when printing pictures but I think it delivers a bit warmer tones comparing to the real photos. However, a thick and glossy photo paper would be more suitable for photo printing.

                    It is appropriate for double-sided prints. With cheaper papers and due to ink bleeding, the letters might be shown on the reverse side and in that case the text isn't readable. This paper holds the ink well on the surface and it's thick enough to prevent the other side showing through.

                    In terms of whiteness, the paper is bright white at both sides. There are a lot of papers in the market that change colour very quickly and they shift to yellow. This one is stable and retains the fairly bright white colour for longer.

                    One of the aspects that I like about this paper is that it's environmental friendly. It's not recycled paper but the company states that it's produced from sustainable sources. It has been awarded with the Nordic Swan environmental label which is printed on the outside packaging next to the TCF pulp stamp.

                    ~ ~ Summary ~ ~

                    In my opinion, the MultiCopy Original 80 g/m2 A4 paper is a high quality printing paper that creates great prints. The printing process runs smoothly with this paper and it's an environmental-friendly product.


                    Thank you for reading!

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                  • Asos Spike Drop Earrings / Jewellery / 64 Readings / 62 Ratings
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                    03.12.2012 14:54
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                    Disadvantages

                    Very pretty earrings!

                    ~ ~ ASOS Spike Drop Earrings ~ ~

                    These earrings cost only £6, which is a great price for a stylish pair of earrings. I bought them online from the ASOS website after seeing a similar design at a previous Gossip Girl episode, worn by Ivy (Kaylee DeFer).

                    The Asos Spike Drop Earrings are available in one size and colour and their product code at the website is: 151597.

                    ~ ~ Packaging ~ ~

                    The earrings arrived in a sealed clear plastic bag and to be honest, I was a little disappointed to see that they didn't come with a box. They were hanged from a small plastic earring holder and wrapped inside a smaller bubbly wrap bag for extra protection.

                    ~ ~ The Earrings ~ ~

                    The drop earrings are in gold tone, with a spike-shaped design. They are suitable for pierced ears and they are made from a combination of plastic, brass, glass and steel. The post goes through the ear and it's secured with a bullet-shaped push back fastening. The backing is very stable and holds the earrings in place and it has to be pulled out with some force in order to be removed.

                    The stud part of the earring sits beautifully on the ear lobe. The faceted dark grey coloured stud has conical shape with a flat edge and a claw surround that keeps it in place. Two small chain links are attached to the stud and a smaller round link connects the chain with the long cone-shaped lower section.

                    This three dimensional rounded cone-shaped design, dropping down from the chains makes the earrings look great from any angle. The design is quite simple and the gold tone metal finish gives an elegant touch. The cones measure approximately 2 inches long (around 5.1 cm).

                    The earrings are quite long and measure 7.6 cm (3") from the top of the earring, by 0.9 centimeters (around 5/14") at the stud which is the widest part.

                    I like wearing long style designs because they elongate and slim the face and the neck. The long drop earrings are very flattering and stylish and the golden colour makes them look more expensive than they actually are. These are more suited for a night out or a party. They give style to simple outfits and I think that they are very unique.

                    They feel very lightweight and they don't stretch my ear lobes. I can wear them all night and forget about them. I have measured each one of the earring's weight with my high precision scale and it's 3 grams.
                    The weight has become a very important aspect for me when I am buying new earrings, since I purchased a very large and heavy pair of earrings. Their style was pretty but they looked weird on me because they were stretching down my ear, they didn't feel comfortable and they were moving a lot when I was moving my head or when I was dancing. Extra large earrings are a fashion trend this year but unfortunately, most online websites don't list the total weight on the product description.

                    ~ ~ Product Details ~ ~

                    Material: 60% Plastic, 15% Brass, 15% Glass, 10% Steel

                    I guess that this material combination is not ideal for women with sensitive earlobes who get irritated from metals or from cheap earrings.

                    Warning: Avoid contact with liquids

                    ~ ~ Overall ~ ~

                    I tend to wear different styles of earrings so I like buying a lot and have a variety to choose from. Most of them are cheap but I do have some expensive and elegant pieces for special occasions and I only wear them at formal events because I don't want to risk losing them.

                    These are budget earrings and I don't expect them to last for years, but they look beautiful hanging from my ears and I am sure that I will wear them a lot this winter! I would say that the quality is equal to the price I paid, although they look more expensive than they are.

                    I will give them 5 out of 5 stars, because they are easy to wear, lightweight, pretty and they can transform any simple dress to a beautiful night outfit.

                    Thank you for reading!

                    This review was also posted on ciao under my username "sweetybi".

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                    • Epson T1291 / Printer Consumable / 77 Readings / 75 Ratings
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                      29.11.2012 12:30
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                      Advantages

                      • Reliability

                      Disadvantages

                      Large container with reasonable price that lasts longer.

                      ~ ~ EPSON T1291 Black Ink Cartridge ~ ~

                      I own the Epson Stylus Office BX305F printer which is an All-In-One machine which runs with four separate ink cartridges.

                      The T1291 black ink cartridge is designed for a wide range of the Epson multifunctional printers. It is a high capacity (L) cartridge, part of the "Apple Ink" printer supplies. It's a standard cartridge that fits most Epson Stylus, Epson Stylus Office printers and also some WorkForce models. A full list of the compatible model numbers are mentioned at the bottom of the review.

                      The large ink container holds 11.2 ml of black ink, but a medium sized cartridge (T1281) is also available from the "Fox line" with 5.9 ml capacity.

                      The Epson cartridges are very popular and easy to find and most computer stores have the T1291 black ink on stock. I've seen that it's available at Carry's, PC World and Argos but Amazon has proved to be the cheapest option for me. I have purchased the Large T1291 container and this is the one I am reviewing.

                      The black ink is designed with an exclusive resin-based formulation. The DuraBrite Ultra ink pigment penetrates into the paper without expanding around the printed text and produces sharper printouts without smudging. In addition, this ink has a quick-drying formula and dries almost instantly. When the sheet comes out on the output tray, the print is already dry and stable on the paper.

                      ~ ~ Quality & Performance ~ ~

                      The quality of the ink plays an important part in the printer's performance and I always buy genuine Epson cartridges for best results. I print a lot of standard black and white text documents or graphs at home. I also use my all-in-one printer for copying therefore the black ink is the one that I use more often.

                      The black and white text documents are clear and sharp, with deep black coloured text. The ink lasts well and the printing quality is consistent. I really enjoy printing with a brand new cartridge, the fresh black ink comes across sharp and highly detailed without shading of the letters. It dries very fast and doesn't leave any marks or blurry areas around the printed text.

                      With the DuraBrite Ultra technology the ink comes out completely dry and the colour doesn't smear if you touch the printout. In addition, if I print a document with black text and use the highlighter on the printed text there is a little colour smear as expected, but overall the ink stays on place.

                      When I print everyday documents or notes on plain paper I change my printer's settings to draft mode. This way the ink gives me more prints and it has proved to be an effective way to reduce the ink use and the frequency of cartridge replacements. If the low quality "draft" printing option is selected, a very light grainy effect might appear at the letter edges. However, this effect is highly dependent on the printer settings and it's not representative of the overall ink quality.

                      When the printer gives the low ink warning, the ink comes across being a little more faint and grey instead of deep black. I have found that this happens to all the printers that I have owned so far though. Additionally, the quality of the printing might change depending on the printing frequency. If the printed is not used regularly and the ink cartridge has been inside for a long time, the ink dries out on the printer head and the print quality deteriorates.

                      ~ ~ Price vs Durability ~ ~

                      The ink price is affordable and the amount of ink inside the container is good. The T1291 black ink that I currently have in my printer was installed on the 28th of September and today the ink level is half full. I must say that haven't counted exactly how many sheets I can print with one large black cartridge. On average, I print between 10-20 standard black and white documents and some graphs or spreadsheets twice a week, using the low quality printing feature. A rough estimate of the amount of printed pages produced by a full black ink would be around 480 pages max. Overall, I think that there is a good balance between the price and the printing capacity.

                      ~ ~ Installation ~ ~

                      As with most cartridges, the installation is very simple and straightforward. It's very easy to insert by following the instructions displayed step by step on the computer screen. It is recommended to shake the container 4 to 5 times before opening. After unpacking the T1291 cartridge, the yellow tape is removed and the cartridge is placed inside the black cartridge slot. In order to be installed properly, it should be gently pushed until it clicks into place.

                      ~ ~ Packaging ~ ~

                      The Epson T1291 black ink cartridge comes in the "Apple pack", which is transparent at the back and at the sides, with the image of an apple at the front. The Genuine rounded label with the colour shifting golden star and the Epson logo is placed on the top right corner. This label ensures the authenticity of the ink cartridges to protect the buyer from other compatible ink cartridges that are not manufactured by Epson.

                      There are some information printed on the side of the package, including the expiry date, the country where the ink is manufactured and various codes. It's recommended to use the cartridge before the expiry date for best printing results. Epson manufactures ink cartridges at various places around the world, the one that I purchased recently is made in Indonesia. The folded paper inside the packaging gives the product details and some safety instructions.

                      The cartridge is vacuum packed in a plastic packaging. The ink container ia made from a sturdy, light-grey plastic material with a black and white label attached to the top and front sides. The cartridge details are displayed on the label and there is a warning saying that it should not be removed. On the bottom right side, there is a QR code link to Epson. The back side has a ribbed surface with the EPSON logo at the centre. The cartridge features an ink supply hole at the base and a green IC chip on the side.

                      ~ ~ Availability & Price ~ ~

                      The T1291 single pack ink cartridge can be purchased directly from the official Epson website for £12.53 with free First Class delivery in UK. From my experience, Amazon has the cheapest price around the internet for the manufacturer's original product. I ordered mine from Amazon.co.uk and paid £10.56 with free delivery. Another alternative is the CartridgePoint website that sells online genuine ink supplies in good prices.

                      ~ ~ Summary ~ ~

                      The Epson Stylus T1291 black ink is a good quality ink with the great advantage of the quick-drying, smudge-resistant and fade-resistant DuraBrite Ultra technology. In terms of durability and price, I found this ink cartridge a cost-effective printing solution.

                      T1291 compatibility:

                      - Epson Stylus models: SX230/ SX235W/ SX420W/ SX425W/ SX430W/ SX435W/ SX440W/ SX445W/ SX525WD/ SX535WD/ SX620FW
                      - Epson Stylus Office models: B42WD/ BX305 Series/ BX320FW/ BX525WD/ BX535WD/ BX625FWD/ BX630FW/ BX635FWD/ BX925FWD/ BX935FWD
                      - WorkForce models: WF-7015/ WF-7515/WF-7525

                      Thank you for reading!

                      This review may be posted on other sites in the future.

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                      • More +
                        26.11.2012 13:15
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                        Old model but a good digital camera with basic features.

                        The Canon PowerShot camera series was introduced in 1996 and since then the line has expanded with a range of compact digital cameras. The A series includes the entry-level PowerShot models.

                        ~ ~ The Camera ~ ~

                        Canon A400 is a 3.2 Megapixel digital camera with high-quality 2.2x optical zoom lens, 3.2x digital zoom and a total zoom capacity of around 7x. It has a Canon DIGIC processor for superb image quality. It is equipped with a Canon zoom lens with a range from 5.9 - 13.2 mm and the quick shutter speed (1-1/1500 sec) prevents blurry images if the object is moving.

                        When the camera is turned on the lens extends and the shooting target is shown on the display screen. The 115,000 dot resolution display LCD screen with 1.5" size is clear but it's kind of small. The camera has an inbuilt flash unit with 2 meters range.

                        There are 8 special scene modes for easy shooting under different photographic conditions (Portrait, Night Scene, Indoor, Beach, Foliage, Fireworks, Underwater, and Snow) and a movie mode with sound. You can record movies of up to 3 min in low resolution and up to 30 sec with high resolution. The video can be edited from the camera with the available settings.

                        In addition there are Photo Effects of Vivid, Neutral, Low Sharpening, Sepia, Black and White. For the continuous shooting feature (up to 12 images) which is useful for me when I take photos of people, the shooting speed is approximately 1.3 frames per second.

                        It can be connected to PC and Macs via a USB port and it has direct print option to PictBridge compliant printers. This means that you can connect the camera to your printer and print the pictures without transferring them to the computer first.

                        The memory capacity of the provided card is 16MB but you can buy a larger one if you want to store more images and videos. The amount of memory that each picture occupies depends on the file size and the selected quality (superfine, fine, normal) and those parameters can be changed by the user from the menu options.

                        The Canon Powershot A400 model comes in 4 colours: silver, sky blue, lime green and sunset gold. It is currently unavailable by Canon but in can be found on amazon.co.uk and on ebay.co.uk starting from very low prices. The product is made in China and it comes with 2 years worldwide guarantee and thief insurance.

                        ~ ~ The design ~ ~

                        The body design is metallic silver and it looks sturdy. The dimensions of the camera are: 107 x 53.4 x 36.8 mm and the body weighs 165 gr without the batteries. The camera looks simple with nothing impressive concerning the design. The menu setting keys, the zoom function controls and all the access and control buttons are located next to the display screen on the back side. The battery compartment and the slot for the SD memory card are placed on the side. The on/off button, the shutter key and the built-in speaker are placed on the top of the body and the tripod socket can be found at the bottom. The menu buttons are conveniently located on the back side next to the display screen and they are easily accessible with your thumb.

                        ~ ~ Battery ~ ~

                        The camera works with 2 standard alkaline AA batteries that are inserted in the battery compartment at the side of the device. Rechargeable NiMH batteries (size AA NB-2AH) can also be used and they are economically efficient as they can be recharged, they have longer battery life and they offer three times the amount of shots comparing to the AA batteries.

                        The flash function consumes a lot of energy and in combination with the display screen energy consumption, it becomes slower to recharge when the battery runs low so you should always carry along a pair of additional AA batteries. Generally, I prefer cameras with lithium ion rechargeable batteries as I believe they last longer and they are environmentally friendly.

                        ~ ~ My opinion ~ ~

                        My brother purchased this digital camera for 159 Euros (around £ 139) in 2005 and he was using it for a few years. When he decided to replace it and buy a new camera with advanced features he gave it to me as a gift. I have been pleased with the quality and durability of this digital camera. It's an entry level camera that will meet your needs if you want it for capturing family memories, holiday's photos, social events and everyday use.

                        It captures enough detail, it has a good picture quality and it's simple and very easy to use. I always use it in the full-auto mode and I am pretty happy with the majority of indoor and outdoor pictures although you can get some blurry shots occasionally. The colours are satisfying even when the lighting is poor but there is a red eye problem if I forget to use the red-eye reduction feature. With this feature on, the problem is reduced but it doesn't disappear. The flash is a little slow to recharge, especially when the batteries are running low.

                        It's a decent camera with basic design and good size to carry around. I can take it with me wherever I go and it feels pretty solid but one thing that might be worthy to note is that it's over 36 mm deep which is almost double of the newest digital camera models. So if you are used to have a slim digital camera, it might not be so comfortable to hold.

                        ~ ~ Box Contents ~ ~

                        - Digital Camera PowerShot A400
                        - Wrist Strap WS-200
                        - 2-AA type Alkaline Batteries
                        - AV Cable AVC-DC300
                        - Interface Cable IFC-400PCU
                        - SD Memory Card SDC-16M
                        - Software CD-ROM

                        ~ ~ Overall ~ ~

                        To sum up, it's an easy to use portable digital camera with good features and satisfying image quality. However, this model is outdated and I would recommend searching for alternatives in newer items.

                        Thank you for reading!

                        This review was originally posted on ciao under my username sweetybi, on February 2012.

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                        • More +
                          25.11.2012 10:22
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                          A great eye cream with moisturising benefits.

                          ~ ~ Apple Anti-Tiredness Eye Care ~ ~

                          The Apple Anti-Tiredness Eye Care cream is part of the Essential Skin Care product line from the Apple Smoothing Care Programme. The "Smoothing Care" programme is designed to relax and refresh the eye area and slow down the appearance of wrinkles.

                          The eye cream contains four Apple extracts to target the 1st wrinkles: an organic apple concentrate with high vitamin and mineral content, apple sugars with smoothing powers, an apple cellular extract which increases the cell longevity and apple pip oil which enhances the skin resistance.

                          ~ Claims ~

                          The cream is based on Apple extracts and it states that "it delivers an anti-tiredness effect to the eyes area, thanks to anti-puffiness Sweet Orange and an anti-dark circle Micro-Alga."

                          ~ ~ The product ~ ~

                          I purchased the Apple Anti-Tiredness Eye Care cream for around £15, reduced from its normal price of £24.95. I purchased this product with the Raspberry soft face cream after my beautician's recommendation.

                          The area around my eyes is dryer than the rest of my face skin and sometimes my eyes look tired. Under-eye dark circles and puffiness also appear sometimes from the lack of sleep and a few days before my period comes.

                          The product statement is exactly what I would like my eye cream to offer. I need an eye cream that calms down my eye contour area and hydrates it.

                          The cream has a very thin, gel-like consistency and a semi-transparent white colour. It has a rather runny texture and it's extremely light, almost silky. Applying the cream is very easy and a gentle massage around the eyes using the ring finger is very beneficial for our eyes.

                          I use this eye cream once a day, after my morning cleansing routine in combination with an eye mask for the night that I usually apply before bed. I apply only a small amount of the product underneath my eyes with light and smooth motion. I concentrate at the area above the cheekbone and below my bottom eye lid, moving from the inside corner near my nose and outwards. I also extend a bit out of the eye line and apply some cream underneath my eye brows.

                          On application it feels refreshing, with calming and smoothing effects. The cream is rapidly absorbed and I can feel my skin hydrated immediately. It mositurises the skin around my eyes and make it look more radiant. My eyes look better and I've noticed that the puffy bags and the tiredness signs are significantly improved.

                          It's designed for prevention of the eye wrinkles, so it's probably more appropriate for young ages since it doesn't offer serious anti-ageing benefits. I would say that it's more suitable for women at their mid-twenties to early thirties.

                          The cream is fragrance-free and it's ophthalmologically tested. Docteur Renaud products are based on natural ingredients and they do not contain chemical and harmful ingredients like Synthetic Colorants, Synthetic Perfume, Parabens and Mineral Oil.

                          ~ ~Packaging ~ ~

                          The cream is presented in an elegant cardboard box in crisp white colour. The brand logo is also displayed at the front in dark blue colour and an image of freshly cut red apples is printed right below the cream details. The complete description of the product properties can be found on the remaining three sides and there is also a detailed list of ingredients at the back.

                          The eye cream comes in a white squeezy plastic container, with a silver tone screw lid. The tube contains 15 ml of product (0.53 oz. net wt) and there is only one tube size available for the eye cream. At the front of the tube, we see the brand logo and the text with the product name and details is in blue and red colour. The instructions of use are briefly mentioned at the back, right above the tube details.

                          The cream is dispensed by a small tapered nozzle which is protected by the screw lid made from stiff plastic material. The plastic flexible material of the tube is very easy to squeeze but the product has a bit runny texture and it needs to be squeezed very gently in order to control the amount of product that comes out.

                          A lightly scented folded paper is found inside the cardboard box with information about the product in French, English, German, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian and Greek.

                          Product Durability: The cream should be used for 12 months after it's first opened.

                          Paraben Free.

                          ~ ~ Price & Availability ~ ~

                          The tube contains 15 ml of product and costs £24.95 in full price. It can be purchased from Marks & Spenser or from the official Docteur Renaud website: http://www.doctor-renaud.co.uk/

                          There is an offer at the moment for online purchases from the official site. The customers get three 5ml product tubes for free with every order.

                          ~ ~Summary ~ ~

                          This eye cream is designed to prevent and reduce the first wrinkles around the eyes. Overall, I think that this is a high quality eye cream, it's feels quite refreshing and offers the additional benefits of natural ingredients. It meets my needs and I would thoroughly recommend it.

                          Thank you for reading!

                          This review may be posted on other sites in the future.

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                          • More +
                            23.11.2012 20:31
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                            Disadvantages

                            A great moisturiser that works well!

                            ~ ~ Introduction ~ ~

                            I have a very thorough skincare routine that I follow daily. I want to use nourishing products that are beneficial for my skin, preferably based on natural ingredients. I am not using anti-ageing products yet but I want to keep my skin moisturised and prevent the ageing process.

                            This cream was introduced to me by my beautician. I wanted a light face cream appropriate for my age (I am 27), that would hydrate my skin without leaving an oily look on my face.

                            She proposed the Raspberry Soft Cream from the Docteur Renaud range which was on offer and had been reduced from its normal price of £24.95, to around £15. Docteur Renaud is not a brand that I had heard before but I thought I should give it a try. I purchased the 50 ml tube of the Raspberry Soft Cream for £15 and an eye cream from the Apple range at half price.

                            ~ ~ The Brand ~ ~

                            Docteur Renaud is a French company with expertise in aesthetic treatment. It is named after Louis Raymond Renaud, the French cosmetologist who founded the company in 1947. The company states that they make products with natural ingredients, without unwanted chemical ingredients or products in their formulations. They produce skincare products free from: Parabens, Synthetic Colorants, Synthetic Perfume, Mineral Oil.

                            These products are not tested on animals.

                            ~ ~ The Product ~ ~

                            The Raspberry Soft Cream is part of the Essential Skin Care product line from the Raspberry Hydrating Care Programme.

                            The Raspberry "Hydrating Care" Programme comprises from four Cleanser products, two Essential Skin Care moisturising products, one serum as part of the Intensive Skin Care and a moisturising mask in the Beauty Ritual Skin Care.

                            The Raspberry Soft Cream contains Organic Raspberry extract, Raspberry omega 3s, Raspberry butter and Raspberry seed oil. It's also enriched with a plant complex called "Phyto-Endorphins" to enhance the radiance of the skin.

                            This face cream is suitable for all skin types but it's more beneficial to normal to dry-prone skin.

                            "Claims:" The cream is based on Raspberry extracts and it states that it will give "absolute softness and hydration" to the skin.

                            I really like the Raspberry based products since I discovered that they have ingredients with anti-cancer properties. The product claims sound interesting as well.

                            ~ ~ Packaging ~ ~

                            The tube comes in a white cardboard box with a nice texture and shiny look. The box has a beautiful, eye-catching image of fresh raspberries printed at the front side. The brand logo and the basic cream details are printed at the front. The remaining three sides are used for the full product properties and the ingredients list.

                            The box contains a beautifully scented folded paper with information about the product in 9 languages: French, English, German, Spanish, Italian, Dutch, Portuguese, Russian and Greek.

                            The face cream comes in a common 50 ml squeezy plastic tube in white colour, with a silver tone screw-type lid. The brand logo and the cream main details are similarly displayed at the front in blue and red letters. At the back we can find the cream description and the claims in French and English, the tube details and the cosmetic symbols concerning the product durability. The screw lid of the tube is made from rigid plastic. It unscrews to reveal the flat tip of the tube with the dispensing hole. The product is easily dispensed and due to the thick consistency of the cream, it's very easy to control the amount of the product that comes out.

                            The plastic tube is flexible and easy to squeeze the product out. It is very lightweight and in good size to carry in my handbag.

                            ~ Useful info ~
                            - I was recently informed that the ingredients on the tubes or boxes are listed in descending order of concentration.
                            - The e-mark shows that the product is in accordance with the EU standards.
                            - Product Durability: The cream should be used for 12 months after it's first opened.
                            - Paraben Free.

                            ~ ~ Performance ~ ~

                            Recently I had my skin tested by a dermatologist, during a free session offered by my beautician at her beauty salon. The lady told me that my facial skin is normal to dry, without any signs of wrinkles yet. She also said that the area around my eyes looked tired but I think she wanted to sell an eye treatment with the company's products after the session. I've realised that my skin is dry-prone because it feels tight after washing my face as part of my morning routine.

                            The moisturiser is white in colour, with a thick creamy consistency. However, it's very lightweight and feels soothing on application. It has a sweet, fresh raspberry fragrance that I really love. It's quite intensive at the beginning but as the cream is absorbed by the skin, it leaves a light fruity scent. Generally, I prefer fragrance-free products for my skincare or make up, but I like the fruity smell of this cream.

                            I apply the face cream gently with my fingertips and I concentrate to the dry areas (my forehead and the area around the nose). Upon application to my clean face, the cream is absorbed quickly and I immediately feel my skin smooth and soft. I only need to use a small amount of the product to feel that my face is moisturised.

                            It provides a good base for foundation and make up. Normally, I wait for it to absorb completely before applying my makeup, to achieve a matte and natural look. My skin feels moisturised for the rest of the day without traces of oil or grease.

                            This cream is perfect for my skin type, after application I don't feel the dryness at those areas and I believe that it moisturises my skin effectively. It's not working as an anti-ageing treatment so it's mostly suitable for younger women that want to keep their skin hydrated and feel comfortable.

                            I have been using the face cream in combination with my eye cream for two months now and my skin has visible improvements. It looks clean and radiant and my friends have noticed, saying that my skin looks great lately.

                            My beautician's advice is to use this as a night cream as well, and I have to admit that my skin feels extremely smooth in the morning when I apply it before going to sleep.

                            This face cream is gentle and has not irritated my skin, however I rarely get any skin irritations/ itchiness by creams and lotions.

                            The cream doesn't have an SPF for sun protection. I think that this is a disadvantage since it's good to protect our skin from the harmful UV rays of the sun. So I would advise to use the cream in combination with a sunscreen or a makeup product with high SPF.

                            ~ ~ Price & Availability ~ ~

                            The tube contains 50 ml of product and costs £24.95 in full price. It can be purchased from Marks & Spenser or from the official Docteur Renaud website: http://www.doctor-renaud.co.uk/

                            There is an offer at the moment for online purchases from the official site. The customers get three 5ml product tubes for free with every order.

                            ~ ~ Overall ~ ~

                            Overall, I think that this is a really good soft day cream and I would recommend it for young women who want a lightweight daily cream with nice scent. The natural extracts and oils of Raspberry are beneficial for the face skin and although I think it's a quite expensive cream, I will repurchase it in the future.

                            Thank you for reading!

                            This review may be posted on other sites in the future.

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                            • Efco Greenline / Garden Tool / 63 Readings / 62 Ratings
                              More +
                              22.11.2012 18:01
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                              Disadvantages

                              Good quality nylon line for the brushcutter.

                              ~ ~ Efco Greenline ~ ~

                              Nylon lines are made from nylon materials and they are used on gardening tools, like lawn moaners, brushcutters and trimmers.

                              The lines are placed into the line head and when the brushcutter is running, the line head rotates very fast and the lines cut the grass. The green line needs to have high strength and resistance to prevent it from breaking while it is used with the lawn moaner or the brushcutter. They also need to be flexible and have wear resistance.

                              This green line is manufactured by Efco. It is bright green in color and it is available in 4 profiles: round, four-lobed, five-lobed and silent. According to the product specifications, it is made of "polyamide monofilament with a high percentage of Nylon PA 6/6, blended with special components to impart high exterior wear resistance and interior breaking strength".

                              The green line is also available in a range of cable thickness and lengths, according to the user's needs. The full product range can be found at the official website:

                              http://www.efco-uk.co.uk/
                              http://www.emak.co.uk/


                              ~ ~ The company ~ ~

                              Efco is an Italian company that manufactures machinery equipment for gardening, farming etc, used to maintain green spaces. Efco is part of the Emak Group. The product range is suitable for home users and professionals and it includes lawnmowers, hedgetrimmers, brushcutters, garden tractors, power cutters etc and accessories for the aforementioned equipment.


                              ~ ~ The product ~ ~

                              The Greenline by Efco is a suitable replacement line for our brushcutter at home, based on the specifications provided with the equipment in the instruction brochure.

                              I have only operated the machine a few times for low grass and my father works at the more demanding parts of the garden. I've found it hard to manage and a bit heavy so I usually watch and occasionally help with the replacement of the nylon lines.

                              We have purchased the round profile. The line is solid with a perfectly rounded shape and it's is available in 3 different packages: the Roll packaging, the Blister Greenline and the large Reel. The one that we use is the 41 m long Blister Green line with round profile and 3.5 cm diameter (135 ft x 0.317 inches). The part number written on the packaging is: 63040171. This number is unique for each Greenline profile and it corresponds to the specific diameter and length at the product catalogue.

                              My father paid for this product therefore I am not sure about the cost. He purchased the bigger diameter because it's compatible with our brushcutter and he says that it's stronger and lasts longer because it's not easy to break when it finds obstacles on the ground. We use the machine for light work around the house and our garden. So we usually cut the grass, the weed that has grown around the trees and the low plants.

                              As the trimmer head rotates, the line gets shorter and we need to reload the line in order to add more length. Some heads with the latest technology reload the line automatically but we have a simple one that needs to be reloaded manually. If the nylon line is weak, it breaks faster and therefore we have to stop working and reload the head every once in a while. This green line profile is durable and strong for light work. The quality is great but when the brushcutter works at the hard conditions it needs to be replaced regularly.

                              This Greenline is part of the regular Efco line, but there is also a new range called "Silentline" which features a special profile for reduced noise levels.


                              ~ ~ Packaging ~ ~

                              The blister package is rounded and the green line forms a roll inside. From the catalogue range, the Roll packaging contains 15 meters of line, the Blister packaging is used for lengths between 41 and 100 meters, depending on the line diameter. For smaller diameters, longer lines can fit in the blister. Finally, the large Reel is available in three lengths, between 165 and 349 meters.

                              The packaging is made from plastic in dark grey colour, with a rounded shape and rounded edges. Two plastic protrusions are shaped at the bottom to allow the blister package to stand vertically and a hang hole is also cut at the top. The front part is semi-transparent and the line is visible through the packaging. The company logo and the product details with an image of the profile are printed at the front side.

                              There is a relatively wide opening at the base between the protrusions, leaving the nylon line roll completely exposed. The back side is also rounded at the edges with a circular shaped hole in the middle. The product is also visible from the back side, through a rectangular open hole at the top of the plastic surface. The blister packaging has a small rounded hole at the size of the line profile, which allows the end of the nylon line to come out and unroll when the end is pulled outwards.


                              ~ ~ Overall ~ ~

                              The Greenline by Efco is a good product, strong enough for light work around the house. However, I am not sure that it is suitable for harder conditions or professional equipment.

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                              • ASOS Woven Vest / Clothing / 99 Readings / 99 Ratings
                                More +
                                06.11.2012 20:12
                                Very helpful
                                (Rating)
                                2 Comments

                                Advantages

                                Disadvantages

                                A great value top vest with good fit.

                                ~ ~ Introduction ~ ~

                                When I need to update my wardrobe, I invest in clothing that can be paired easily with other items in my closet. I was looking for a top to wear it with my new high-waisted skirt, in a basic colour that would be easily combined with my jeans. I went on asos.com, and this was one of the most popular vest tops seen on the models, combined with a variety of jeans and skirts on the website.


                                ~ ~ The Vest Top ~ ~

                                It's a black vest top with a very simple but fashionable design. This item is from the ASOS collection and it's only available at the ASOS website (www.asos.com). I purchased a size 8 vest top at full price and paid £16.00. I didn't get any discounts for this one, probably because it's a popular design and one of the most wanted items.

                                The vest top comes in 5 different colours. Each colour has a different product code on the website: Nude (227844), Cobalt (250742), Khaki (227857), Burgundy (227849), Black (227839). Sizes available from UK 6 to UK 18.

                                The vest has been cut with a regular fit according to the product details. It has a deep scoop neckline and racer back. It's sleeveless, with thick straps of about 4.5 cm wide. The fabric is made of 100% Polyester. It's not elastic and the overall fit is more "relaxed". The top part is tighter and the neckline comes low enough to reveal some cleavage. The vest is floaty below the chest and has loose fitting that doesn't hug the body.

                                One concern I had was about this top was the length. It looks long enough in the picture and the description says that size 8 measures 66cm or 26in from side neck to hem. Indeed, my vest top was 66 centimeters long which is perfect for me as it comes down to the hip level.

                                It can be machine washed with similar colours and it should be turned inside out before cleaning. I wash it at 30 degrees and iron it with low temperature on the reverse side.


                                ~ ~ How it looks on me ~ ~

                                Vest tops are basic items for my wardrobe, they are very versatile due to the simple design and the ability to match them with almost everything. I wear my black vest frequently, in multiple ways: with jeans or leggings for a casual look, tucked into high-waisted skirts for a more professional and formal look, or untucked with a thin belt in the waist. Even though I am wearing the same top, my outfits look so different every time.

                                The vest top sits well on my body, but the front neckline is a little revealing for my style. And because the fabric is so lightweight and not elastic, I think that if I bend over the top of my bra cups will be exposed.

                                The top is very thin and the polyester fabric looks almost satin which is what I wanted because it's between matte and gloss and it can be worn with casual or formal outfits. Also, the texture has a reasonably nice feel on touch. From my experience, polyester is a strong fabric and it resists creasing which means that it can keep the shape quite well. Overall, the fabric looks great and it's appropriate to wear during the day and at night. It's not a top that's going to keep me warm during the winter but the simple style and comfortable fit make it easy to wear and to combine with most clothes in my closet.

                                Finally, I bought this top in black because it is a slimming colour, easy to wear and very versatile. It can be worn with anything and in multiple ways, so this black vest top is an essential investment for my wardrobe. Additionally, the long-line style is comfortable and covers my hips so I can wear it with leggings.


                                ~ ~ Summary ~ ~

                                It is a simple top with good fit and the basic item for different outfits. Considering the price, it's very good value for money. I'm going to give it 4 stars out of 5.

                                Thank you for reading!


                                _This review may also be posted on other sites in the future_

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