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I bought this originally because my Boyfriend told me not too. I'm pretty sure he was joking due to the 'Lynx effect' adverts but I'm not the type of girl to be told not to do something. He's also now an Ex boyfriend but that's another story.
I've always loved deodorants / body sprays that have a hint of an aftershave smell to them as I feel the smell lasts better and doesn't go 'off' after a few hours of wearing like I feel some flowery bases smells seems to do. So a Lynx body spray for women sounded like a perfect buy.
I purchased it in Boots for £2.95.The can is the standard Lynx can and has a very nifty top where you just need to twist to open and close. This is perfect for throwing in a bag and not worrying about the lid coming off and everything you own smelling really nice but leaving you with no spray left.
The smell is amazingly fresh and clean. The official description is "A vibrant colourful mixture of succulent fruit creates an enticing fusion while floral notes leave a feminine accord. Bottom notes of wood, musk and vanilla give the fragrance a sheer creaminess."
The smell also lasts throughout the day and as mentioned before it doesn't become stale over time.
There are 2 downsides though to this deodorant / body spray.
1) I don't feel like I have the protection offered by anti-perspirants. The spray is light and in my opinion I think it just masks any smells instead of working to fight against them. So as a deodorant I'd say a big no.
2) If using as a Deodorant do not EVER use after shaving your under arms. I did once and the stinging almost made me hit the roof!
I would highly recommend this as a body spray though as the smell is amazing. Although £2.95 is more than I would normally pay for just a body spray but the can is bigger than the usual 'impulse' style cans so overall I think it's worth it.
Now at 29 I know I shouldn't be worrying about Anti-age products just yet but this one is a firm favorite in my make-up bag.
Confession time! I first bought this only because Boots were out of my usual L'Oreal Studio secret foundation. At £9.99 it was £6 cheaper so that was a bonus, what I didn't expect was to fall in love with it like I did.
As I'm very pale I went for the lightest of the range which is 05 Light Beige.
It comes in a funny wee bottle with a round sponge on top and a plastic dome shaped lid over the sponge. I opened it and turned the top as directed, and then turned it some more and then some more (all the while looking more and more confused). After about 10 turns the sponge began to grow a darker colour as the foundation finally made it up the internal tube to the top. Just a side note to say the many turns is only needed the first time the applicator is used, after this the suggested 2 turns works perfectly.
I have used everything under the sun to apply foundation trying to find the best look and I am currently loving this sponge. I have tried brushes as with the previously mentioned L'Oreal foundations, I've tried cotton wool (bad idea), fingers, separately bought foam sponges etc.
The sponge allows a very little to go a long way. I apply it direct to my face with the sponge and cover the required area then blend in with my fingers.
The coverage it gives is fantastic. I can't comment on its claims of erasing crows feet and fine lines as luckily I don't have them yet. But it does also claim to erase dark circles which I definitely have, very dark purple ones under my eyes. This foundation completely wipes these out as well as the rosy-ness I tend to get in my cheeks and forehead.
Other foundations that I have found to cover these blemishes always feels heavy on my face but this is light. And most importantly it doesn't make me look orange or dirty as can be a problem with my fair skin colour.
I would recommend this to every female looking for a foundation that gives great coverage and is light enough to wear everyday without looking like you're caked in make-up.
Overall I am very pleased I tried this as it is now my number 1 choice for foundation.
I was given Nails Inc magnetic nail varnish as a wee 'pick me up' from a friend who felt I needed cheering up. It was the 'Houses of Parliament' one which is an amazing deep purple colour. Knowing this is my favourite colour this was why my friend chose this one for me, she didn't actually realise there was more to this wee bottle than meets the eye.
When I first got it I wondered immediately what the funny lip on the lid was and why it needed instructions. I mean Instructions for nail varnish, really?? In saying that I did actually read them and boy was I glad I did.
These instructions explained the nail varnish was magnetic. So straight away sitting at my desk at work I just had to try this out! I got rid of the standard black colour I had been wearing and got stuck straight in. Yes I have nail varnish remover in my desk at work, a 'present' from a colleague who has seen the state I sometimes have my nails in when I've been too lazy to repaint them in days.
Following the instructions I painted a layer over one nail then held the lid of the nail varnish (this has the magnet on the top) over the painted nail. This is where the lip on the lid came in, it rests against your finger just below your nail to stop you accidently putting the magnet too close to your nail and ruining the varnish. After 20 seconds I removed the lid and my nail had an amazing chevron pattern to it with the purple and then a darker purple almost black forming the lines. I was completely amazed. I quickly finished the rest of the nails and ran round the office showing everyone like a child with a new toy.
How it works is unfortunately not magic as I tried to insist the first time I saw it. The nails varnish in fact has Iron powder in it and the magnet is not just one solid magnet but actually is the shape of the stripes so when held above the nail varnish it pulls the Iron powder in it into the pattern of the magnet.
Once your nails are done it is very tempting to want to put a clear coat on top to try and make them last longer but I would advise against it. Putting clear nail varnish on top slightly blurs the lines and the look is not as defined and striking.
There are now a lot of cheaper copies on the market and I have tried a couple, most noticeably no7s version. The finished look just never has the same quality as the original nails Inc version. Don't get me wrong they are good and do work but just not as striking. So I'd definitely recommend spending the extra £7 and getting the Nails Inc version (Nails Inc - £13, No7 - £5.99)
Trust me the price is worth it when you think how much you would pay in a salon for exactly the same look!
I love my skate shoes. In fact I LIVE in them! I have about 30 pairs ranging from Vans to Adio to Emerica and everything else in-between. But Vans are still no.1 on my list. I wear them with Jeans, cargo pants, shorts, combats, skirts and even have a plain black pair I wear to work (in a smart office)
You cannot beat the comfort of Vans. I have slight flat feet so anything with shape to the arch of the shoe causes me issues. So the flatness of Vans are perfect for me.
There are many different types to choose from and various styles and colours. I have Black to Brown to Blue and even a pink pair.
I have to admit that although I do have a few girls pairs I in fact almost always go for men's or unisex. I feel the girls versions have an odd look to them. As they are thinner they always appear longer than they should and a lot flatter. Whereas the men's / unisex are wider with more shape to them and in my opinion are just a lot more flattering to feet, especially for those of us who have slightly larger than average female feet. At a size 6-7 anything that doesn't make my feet look bigger than they already are is a huge plus point with me.
Which leads me to another great thing about Vans, the half sizes! Online you are able to find all sizes from kids up to men's 15 with all the half sizes in between so being able to wear a 6.5 is great for me.
Now they aren't the cheapest of skate shoes out there, ranging from £40 to £70 on average but with some internet hunting it is possible to find them even cheaper or on sale especially on websites dedicated to skaters and skateboards.
Vans do have some close completion in the market these days, especially in my opinion from Adio, but to me they will always be the original and the best.
A few years ago my work opened up an onsite gym. I thought this would be a perfect way to lose some weight and get healthy. But now it is more than that, it is a part of life for me.
After my first few sessions trying everything out by myself I found I was always drawn back to the rowing machines. This was a surprise to me as I'd always enjoyed cycling and the girls in the office raved about cross trainers but it was the Concept2 D rowing machine that I fell for.
I think the thing the appealed to me was that once finished I felt like ever part of my body had been worked hard whereas on the bike or cross trainers it was always my legs that felt it. But unlike a lot of other workouts I find this one very low impact on both my knees and my back which I have both has issues with in the past.
The machine has the usual 1-10 settings on the 'wheel' depending on how hard you want to push myself. I always go for 10. I'm not sure why but I find I just can't do it at a lower setting, I need the resistance on the handle or I just feel like I'm flopping back and forward.
So once it's set up just strap in your feet and grab the handle. Extend your legs and pull the handle at the same time until your legs are full extended and you are sitting upright. The concept 2 works with a wire as opposed to a strap as with some other rowers. The wire when pulled turns an air fan to provide the resistance. Both of these things, wire and fan, lead to what some may see as the main disadvantage of this product compared to others. It makes a lot of noise! Personally I like it as it helps me get in a rhythm.
The monitor on the Concept 2 is a PM3 with many settings available. I have to admit, the first thing I did when I first tried one of these was play the fish game. Basically you row fast to move your fish up the screen then row slower to move your fish back down the screen. The aim of the game is to avoid the predators but eat the nutritious fish. But now I tend to just set the monitor either for a time or distance that I want to row and it counts it down for me.
The monitor also allows you to see how many calories you have burned but I always turn this off as it never seems to be as many as it feels like it should and can be disheartening.
Okay I'll admit it. I'm scared of the dentist!
I've not been in years but I know I need to go and soon. A few months ago I had a crack in one of my back upper teeth that got infected. It felt like someone was shoving a hot rod up through the side of my face and into my skull. It was unbearable. That was until I found this little gem, Orajel.
I had tried to usual painkillers both internal like Ibroprofen and external like clove oil. The clove oil made me physically sick so that went straight in the bin.
I stumbled across this small tube of Orajel on offer in Boots for £2.50 and was in so much pain that I would have tried anything. The minute I got home I applied a 'green pea' size amount to the affected tooth as directed. The stinging it caused had me cursing and wishing for the dull ache of the toothache back. But this lasted about 10 seconds and then I swear I sang! The whole area very quickly went numb and I was pain free for the first time in days.
Now the directions say use 4 times a day but I must admit I was using it more often during my worse moments. But I think a lot of that may have been psychological on my part. The pain had been so bad I was terrified of going back there so pre-empted it with more Orajel.
It does have a very chemical taste to it but it is bearable and once your mouth goes numb you don't even notice it anymore anyway.
Once purchased you do have to cut the end of the tube off with a strong pair of scissors so be careful if buying this on the go looking for a quick fix.
Well I've had my Samsung Galaxy SII for a month now so think it's time to give it a review.
Now I'm not technologically minded so this is a review from the heart, just my true feelings on the phone.
After years of being a Blackberry owner I decided it was time to give another phone a go. I never considered an IPhone as I personally just do not think they are as good as everyone thinks. So I decided on a Samsung. The S3 was just out and I was seriously tempted until I saw it in person, it was HUGE. I remember the times when phones were getting smaller not bigger. So I instead went for the smaller, older S2.
Now at 125.3 x 66.1 x 8.5 it is still bigger than the IPhone but not so much that it causes issues when carrying or holding. The bigger size does lead to a huge plus point, big screen! The screen is a whopping 4.3 inches and the colours it displays are amazing.
When I got mine home and took it out the box I was surprised by the weight and thinness of the phone. I actually had to go back out and buy one of those Gel cases for the back just to give it a bit more weight as I felt like it was so light I'd drop it too easily.
After 5 minutes of playing with the phone I pretty much had the basics worked out so it is very easy to use and understand. I did go through it and delete a lot of apps that came on it as there was a lot of stuff I'd never use and a lot of free trials for games etc. Free trials are a nice idea and I'm sure a lot of people will try them and maybe then go on to buy them but Guitar hero on the phone just wasn't for me.
The camera is amazing! I liked my 5mp camera on my previous Blackberry Torch but it is nothing compared to the S2's 8mp. It is so clear and the colours are amazing. First thing I did to try it was take a picture of a bee on a thistle in my garden and you would swear it was taken with a ridiculously expensive professional camera.
You can also switch the camera to the 2mp front facing version which is great for taking pictures of yourself and friends but I guess is really meant for video calling.
The only thing I don't like about the camera, and this applies to most phone cameras nowadays, is that you need to use the button on the screen to activate it. Sometimes I wish there was a physical button, preferably on the side, to work the camera.
The battery life on the phone is good. I use mine a lot and always have applications running but I don't need to charge it several times a day unlike people I know with other types of smartphones. The official times given in the handbook are up to 710 standby hours using 2G, up to 610 standby hours using 3G, you will get up to 18 hours 20 minutes talk time using 2G and up to 8 hours 40 minutes using 3G.
I'm not here to review android or it's apps but I need to mention one as it has made my transition from Blackberry to Samsung as lot easier. One of my favourite features of the BB was the BBM and I thought this would be the thing I'd miss the most when leaving Blackberry. But I have now discovered Whatsapp which is basically the same thing but even better. It uses your data to send messages so no pesky text charges to friends in the US or Australia but unlike BBM this app can be downloaded on Blackberry, Android or Apple so I can chat to anyone that has it no matter what phone they have.
Overall I am very glad I went with this phone as so far there are no complaints from me on it.
Before I start this review I want to say that I have never tried any other 'lip plumping' products. So this review is entirely based on my experience with Too faced Lip injection.
I'm still not entirely sure why I bought this item as it's not normally something that I would look twice at. But on a trip to boots while browsing through the other too faced products I decided to give this a go.
Now it's not a cheap product but as a fan of the too faced range I was not surprised by the £14.50 price tag.
Once applied to the lips it stings, it really stings! But hey this is what it's designed to do right? And it a sign that something is definitely working. The gloss itself is very thick and sticky but once you've waited for the stinging to calm down the gloss will have reduced to a nice layer covering your lips with good glossy shine.
Looking in the mirror I can instantly admit the pain was worth it. My lips are plumper and fuller than before, especially my top lip which has always been thinner than the bottom one. This effect lasts for a good 3 hours, long after the gloss itself has worn off.
The only downside is you have to be very careful when applying the gloss, make sure to only apply to your lips. If any gets onto the skin around your mouth it will still work its magic leaving you with unattractive red skin.
This DVD is brought to you by Beto Perez the so called inventor of Zumba. I was extremely dissatisfied with the whole thing.
I go to two Zumba classes a week ran by 2 different instructors and found this DVD slow and disappointing in comparison. I guess for beginners with no Zumba experience this would be helpful but not to anyone who takes their Zumba workouts seriously.
In the time we would do 3 dances in a real class the DVD covers only 1 dance. The real problem here is that they do the same 3 or 4 moves in each dance over and over which gets VERY boring VERY quickly. The whole point of Zumba is that it's energetic and vigorous but you just don't get that from this DVD. There is also points where the move changes but instead of showing us the new move we have a close up on one of the backing dancers smiling away and pretending they are having the best night of their lives.
If the slow repetitive moves aren't enough to put you off then the plastered on grins of the 'pretty people' will do, they look more in pain than happy. This is probably due to the constant cheesy lines from Beto and the singing along to the music.
I suggest you stay away from this DVD. Either get yourself along to a real class or YouTube some real instructors to follow along to.
On the very rare occasion I leave the house without make up I always have this moisturiser close at hand.
I'll admit I originally bought it because it looked nice. The packaging is very simple, white with some purple swirls and flowers along with the name and short description.
The first thing I noticed when trying the lotion out was the smell. It's a very deep berry smell but not too sweet and definitely not over powering. The lotion itself was thicker than I expected from a facial moisturiser but I went ahead and applied it. I was expecting it to feel heavy on my skin due to the thickness but it applied very easily and spread evenly meaning a very little goes a long way.
The bottle claims to moisturise while also keeping the skin matte. It sounds like a contradiction in terms but it really does work. Once applied my skin felt silky and smooth but did not have the greasiness that is usually left once moisturisers are applied.
My skin felt and looked radiant, hence the reason I always make sure I have this at the ready if I do not have make up on instead. But I also have a friend who uses this who swears by using it underneath make up as a moisturising yet mattefying primer.
I have now invested in a full range of 'good things' products from facial wipes to lotion that makes my eyes bright. All with the promise of being free from mineral oils, parabens and sodium lauryl sulphates. As well as not containing any animal ingredients so are safe for both vegetarians and vegans.
As with a lot of females I hate to leave the house without my make-up on. I don't mean the fancy colourful gorgeous stuff - I mean the everyday stuff. The stuff we can now put on in 5 minutes flat and don't even think twice about. It's part of who we are, our identity.
In my make-up bag there is only one thing that I would recommend to all women who wear make-up - Too faced shadow insurance.
I first bought this a few years ago now with a boots token I'd got from my boss for Christmas. I'd picked out a pile of treats for myself and had £13 left over which is exactly what this cost at the time. I didn't really think about it, just threw it in the basket to make up the total.
I was totally blown away and every time I met up with any female (and on one occasion male) friends I had to tell them about this wonder I'd found.
The first try was probably not the best test for it. I was heading out with some girlfriends and decided to give it a very quick try. I woke up the next morning after a night of several cocktails and falling asleep as soon as I got in the door to find my eye-make shadow still on and looking like it did when I left the night before, shame about the mascara which hadn't survived the night as well.
So a few days later I decided to give it a proper testing and even read the label first. I squeezed a very tiny blob of the primer onto a finger and spread it over one eye lid. I expected to have to add more but this small amount spread easily and evenly covering the whole lid, this means an added bonus of the 11g tube lasting a considerable length of time. I gave it a few seconds to dry while I applied my eyeliner then brushed a small amount of eye shadow over the eyelid, some mascara and I was ready for the day.
After several hours I decided to check how it was holding up. I was pleased to see the eye shadow had not faded at all but even better it hadn't creased. I always wear black eye shadow (lighter in the day but heavy at night) and I find during the day the creases in my eye lids where the eye shadow builds up can become very noticeable. Even the most skilled make up applier will see that after a few hours the make-up no longer looks as fresh or perfect as it was but this product makes it seem almost as if it's just applied.
I read books, and I mean a LOT of books. I cannot sleep without having read at least a couple of pages of something! Due to this I often found myself reading anything I could find. I'd run out of books and have to borrow my partner's books which I didn't enjoy but needed!
So it came the time where I decided a Kindle would be a wise investment. I mean I was flying through books and then buying more so was spending a good £20 a month on new books.
I got straight onto amazon only to find there were 2 different kindles available. The standard kindle at £89 or the 3G version at £149. I went for the standard version. An extra £60 for 3G just seemed ridiculous to me, just make sure you have plenty of books stored on it. And really in this day and age how far are you ever really from a WIFI hotspot.
When it came and I took it out the box I was amazed. So small and slim and light. Now it may not seem much to people with tablets and Ipads but its job is to let you read books which is what it does perfectly.
To get started all that was needed was to turn on the kindle and set up the Wi-Fi then connect the kindle to your online amazon account. Could not have been simpler!
The possible downside to the Standard kindle compared to the 3G is that the 3G does have a physical keyboard which I feel at time would be advantageous. Instead it has a keyboard button that brings up the on screen keyboard and a 4 way controller button that allows you to navigate the keyboard. It's pretty easy to use just slightly more time consuming that a physical keyboard but to be honest it really isn't needed that much.
Now to the books. Downloading was such an easy process and all that is required is to be connected to WIFI. The actual books are cheaper than paper books but if the book is new or a best seller they can still be a bit pricier than you would expect for an e-book. There are also many free books available, amazon even has a top 100 free books so you don't have to go searching for the bargains.
Now it's never going to be the same quality as reading a book, it's not a book! But it does come damn close. The 'E-Ink' as they call it is the closest you're going to get to reading paper without it actually being paper. Unlike old fashioned LED screens it doesn't have any backlighting or glare.
The kindle has many other options such as being able to search the internet, share passages from the book online, makes notes etc. But I'm not familiar with these, I bought it to read books on and for that this is the best present I have ever bought myself.
Battery Life - Up to 1 month
Storage - Up to 1400 books or 2GB
Size - 166mm x 114 mm x 8.7 mm
Weight - 170 G
When I bought my car I was in such a rush to get the actual car I never considered waiting to get any special features such as the 'blue and me' option. This left me with a dilemma. How to deal with phone calls while driving as there is no way I would ever answer a phone risking myself and others around me.
I tried a standard Bluetooth headset but just could not get used to it in my ear. You'd think that being of the generation brought up on Walkman's and MP3 players I'd be used to having a headphone permanently in my ear but I just could not get comfortable with it. Plus I had a dread of becoming one of those people that walk around the supermarket with it in, nooooo!
Any way so after some online investigation I decided to get the official Blackberry visor mount speakerphone. It arrived and I removed it from the packaging (with some difficulty, there was several knives and scissors involved) and first off noticed its looks. It's sleek and looks almost like a futuristic phone itself.
First job to be done was to charge it which was easily done as it uses the same micro USB connection as the actual phone. Once charged the speakerphone needs to be 'paired' with your Blackberry which is easier that it sounds. You press the front of the speaker and it will announce "pairing mode" then you just need to do the usual Bluetooth search on the phone to find the speaker and connect. I took the speakerphone to my car and clipped it onto the driver side visor as instructed. I even tried moving the visor up and down but it stayed fast and never moved once, impressive!
Now first up was to try the simple make and receive calls and see how I got on. I tried the voice dialling without much success. I'd press the panel until hearing the beep and then state who I wanted to call and it would ask if I meant someone else. After much trying I discovered it must be the Scottish accent that was confusing it and that if I spoke clearly and slowly it would pick up the correct name.
I then had a friend call me so I could try answering it as well. The Speakerphone announces 'incoming call from' then the phone number. Would be more helpful if it was a 'known' number in my phone book to use the name instead of the number. But overall the answering was easy, just a press on the front panel of the speakerphone.
If your still on your call when you reach your destination then just press and hold the front of the speakerphone and it will turn off and transfer the call to your Blackberry. But beware this does leave a few seconds of 'dead air' to the person on the other end.
Now for the interesting part, the part that had convinced me to purchase this in the first place. The ability to connect it to my car speakers! The built in FM transmitter is designed so you can either listen to your music on your Blackberry through the car's speakers or use the speakers to listen to your calls through instead.
On the side of the Speakerphone there is an FM key and when this is pressed an FM frequency is announced and now all you need to do is tune your car radio to that same frequency and hey presto! Just remember to save the frequency to one of your channels. The only problem here is that if you do not use the FM transmitter either by making / receiving a call or listening to music from your handset for 60 seconds it will turn off, meaning the radio will then start searching for the nearest available radio station instead. This can cause a bit of bother when a call does come in and you have to change the radio station back to the saved one for this frequency, hit the FM button on the Speakerphone and wait a few seconds while they connect. If you're not quick you'll lose the call.
Overall I am extremely satisfied with this item. The quality of the calls is beyond anything I could have imagined from a Bluetooth set; they are clear and distinct with no distortion or interference. The Speakerphone itself is remarkably easy to set up and once done so doesn't not need re-done.
One final note, be careful when turning the Speakerphone off. Hold the front panel for a few seconds until it beeps and says power off. But make sure not to accidently press it once and then hold it until it turns off as I kept doing for a long time. Pressing the front panel twice re-dials the last number called and as the second pressing of the panel was me turning it off it would transfer the call to the handset. This resulted in a lot of 'pocket' calls to my friends / boyfriend / family etc :)
I bought this DVD player once the digital switchover began. There is no point in me buying a whole new TV just for the bedroom that would be used a couple of hours a week so decided to just get a DVD player for when movies in bed was needed.
My last combo DVD / VCR player had recently died so I wanted one in a hurry without having to trawl through websites to find one. I popped into Asda and saw this one there for £17.
It's not fancy but it does the job!
The small size means it can sit on top of my TV unit without having to balance the TV on top of it (which wouldn't work anyway as it is top loading)
Setting up was very easy just plug it in and go. Although it is best to be aware that there was no scart lead supplied with it and this is essential to connect it to the TV. This was not obvious from the packaging but thankfully we had a spare one lying about.
To be honest I wasn't expecting much for £17 but was genuinely surprised by this wee gem. It plays the DVDs at a high quality, it can play multi region DVDs, it's compact and was easy to set up.
The remote that it comes with has my favourite feature of the ability to mute it with the DVD remote, no need to go fumbling around for the TV remote in the middle of a movie if needed.
Firstly I want to say I have never seen the Hunger games movie. This review is entirely based on the book.
I ordered this book online as I had heard good things about it from a friend, I received it on the Wednesday and it was finished by the Friday.
The book is set in the distant future where the world we know today no longer exists, in fact anything outside of what was North America is never mentioned at all. North America is now called Panem which consists of 12 Districts plus the Capitol.
Every year to remind those that live in the districts that rebellion will not be tolerated the Capitol arranges the hunger games. Two tributes, one male one female, from each district are selected randomly to take part in the hunger games. The hunger games involve the 2 tributes from each district being taken to an arena in the Capitol where they have to survive and fight each other until only one remains alive.
Once I started the book I could not put it down. The characters were brought to life by Suzanne Collins and you really got a sense of who they were. I'm not ashamed to say I cried a lot through this book and the following 2 of the trilogy. By the end of it I felt like part of the world that had been created by Suzanne Collins and did not want to leave it or the characters I had come to know and love.
Kaitness Everdeen - Our Protagonist
Ever since her father died Kaitness has been the one in charge of her family despite being only 16 herself. From an early age she learnt to hunt in the forest to allow her to provide food for her family. When her little sister is selected as the tribute for district 12 she volunteers to go instead in her place.
Peeta is the other tribute selected from district 12. The only interaction he had with Kaitness before the hunger games was to give her bread from his parent's bakery when she was starving. Upon entering the games Peeta declares his love for Kaitness and both of them realise this may be a strategy to both survive the games.