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abbiej1711

abbiej1711
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Member since: 22.05.2010

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    • Iams Adult Chicken in Gravy / Cat Food / 6 Readings / 5 Ratings
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      11.07.2015 23:06
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      (Rating)

      Advantages

      • "My cats love it"
      • "Good price"
      • "Decent meat content"

      Disadvantages

      • None

      The cats love it!

      Ive always given my cats a range of foods, to avoid them becoming fussy and I find it has worked- they will eat just about anthing!
      I buy iams in bulk as its never affected their tummys, and the quality is decent for the price. Ive added this review to the chicken and gravy flavour, as out of the multi pack boxes I buy, this tends to vanish from their plate the quickest!

      Price
      I buy the wet food in large trays
      Pets at home- £16.99 for 40 sachets or two boxes for £24 when its on offer which works out at 30p per sachet- cheaper than most other brands of the same quality.

      Youll find iams to be more expensive than brands such as go cat, whiskas, felix... and thats because its much better!

      Quality and nutrition
      Iams isnt as good as many of the premium brands such as royal canin, wainwrights or eukenuba etc however for the price I find the meat content to be quite reasonable.
      In the wet adult pouches, iams food has at least 25% chicken (or duck, or lamb etc) which if you compare that to other competitive brands such as whiskas and felix which are 4% the different is quite huge!
      Theres also added Vitamin E for immune support, and omega 3 and 6 oils.

      Overall
      My cats have loved this product from being tiny, and I love that the multi pack boxes have both gravy and jelly as it gives them a variety and helps avoid them becoming fussy for one type.
      Iams has never upset any of my cats tummys, and it always goes down a treat!

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    • More +
      11.07.2015 22:55
      Very helpful
      (Rating)

      Advantages

      • "Absorbs wee quite well"
      • "Doesnt get stuck in their paws"
      • "Easy for the cats to bury their waste"
      • "Fantastic price"

      Disadvantages

      • "Quite dusty"
      • "Doesnt mask odour very well"

      Great for the price, but I wouldn't be able to use it by itself

      With 5 cats I tend to get through cat litter very quickly, and ive tried various brands
      I recently tried the Tesco home brand, ive always been put off in the past but after hearing good reviews I thought id give it a go.

      My main priority with litter is that they dont allow the smell to take over, which is why ive only given 3 stars, as I dont think this litter masks that good. It is also quite dusty when you pour it into the tray, so I can't let me cats be nearby when I do this as it makes their eyes water!
      However, I find it helps if you use the bob martin litter freshener

      For the price of £1.15 in my local store, you cant really complain with this!
      Ive tried mixing it with other more expensive litters with a better performance, and it does help! This tesco stuff helps bulk out your other litter to make it last longer.

      If I have to use this litter alone, I use plenty of litter freshener to help with the smell.
      It does soak up wee pretty good, its more the pooh which takes over with the smell.
      Ive tried litters which allows the wee to just form a puddle on the bottom- sophisticat! And I hated that! No cat wants wet paws! So this Tesco brand does a good job of soaking up the wee.

      I dont change my litter trays once a week as others have said.. they are spot cleaned daily, and emptied completely every other day, or more if needed. So I cant comment on the performance of this litter over a period of days, as I think its disgusting to leave dried wee in a tray!
      Overall for the price you cant go wrong, you cant expect a fantastic litter from this price, but I got what I expected from it- a basic cat litter.

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    • Pets at Home / Highstreet Shopping / 4 Readings / 3 Ratings
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      11.07.2015 22:44
      Very helpful
      (Rating)

      Advantages

      • "Allow pets in store"
      • "Friendly staff"
      • "Long opening times"
      • "Discount vouchers sent in the post"
      • "Great Knowledge"
      • "Plenty to choose from"
      • "Great prices"

      Disadvantages

      Great prices for everyday needs for your pet!

      Since having pets, the past few years I have spent more and more time in this shop!
      Every visit I have is fantastic, and I can sometimes spend ages looking at the different choices of food, or new toys to choose from for my cats and kittens!
      Most of the time, there are staff available for me to grab, or to be honest they usually ask me first! They really know their stuff, everything ive asked has been answered and im always greatful for their help.

      Loyalty card
      I buy loads from this store and have recently signed up for their VIP card which enables you to get points every time you shop, and they send you vouchers in the post!
      This month I have £10 off when I spend £50, which is great!! I also still have a 10% off voucher to use which everybody is given when they sign up, so when I spend £50 this week ill save £15... I cant moan at that!

      Products
      Theres always the product I am looking for in stock, and if theres an item they dont sell they have been quick to help me in the past- directing me to the website, or ordering it in for me.
      Theres always discounts on in store, and plenty of flavours and sizes to choose between.
      I currently spend between £30-£50 a month in this store as ive got 5 cats.
      Theres also a huge range of dog food, toys, coats, accessories, and also small animal products, along with reptile bits and fishy items!

      Prices
      This company may be known as 'expensive' but ill be honest, I did shop around when I first got cats, and I always ended up back at pets at home.
      Theres the odd few items such as litter freshener, which is sometimes cheaper to get from home bargains, but most of my monthly needs I happily buy from pets at home.
      They sell bowls, toys, cat treats etc from just £1, just look for the bargain range!

      Quality
      I can honestly say ive never had a complaint about any product ive bought.
      My last big buy- a willows cat post- priced at £100 but with discount I paid £80, ive had it 6 months now and its very well used, and still in fantastic condition!
      Ive returned things in the past with no trouble, but every toy ive bought has lasted!

      Online purchases
      I regularly order items into store at pets at home- they now offer a service- buy before 8pm and your order can be in the store to collect the next day free of charge- even on a Sunday

      Overall I really would recommend pets at home, I cant fault them in any way. The staff are fantastic and I personally think they get far too much hassle! They are just doing their jobs!
      I will continue to shop there, and spoil my cats rotten!

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    • Felight Cat Litter / Cat Accessory / 1 Reading / 1 Rating
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      11.07.2015 22:25
      Very helpful
      (Rating)

      Advantages

      • "Doesnt stain paws"
      • "Non clumping"
      • Cheap

      Disadvantages

      • "Doesnt mask odour very good"

      Great price, doesnt mask the smell as good as id hoped.

      I have 5 cats now, and so I get through quite a lot of cat litter.
      I have been trying different brands and looking for a litter which is decently priced and also does the job well for the money.
      I was using the pets at home clumping fragranced litter, but I found with this many cats, it quickly turned to a mashed potatoe sort of texture and it was a nightmare to clean even when trying to keep on top of the maintenance throughout the day.
      As we are usually at work throughout the day, we decided to change to a non clumping litter and this is one of the brands we came across.

      It is sold in Asda and Tesco and also in pets at home- although I have to order it into store as its not sold in my local store. Its the cheapest place to buy it from at pets at home and will free next day delivery to store its quick and easy to pick up. I pay £4 for a 10 litre bag, and need to order a few to last me a couple of weeks.
      With 5 cats I was using just over a bag a week, which in theory isnt that much and I found spending £4 a week on litter wasnt too bad.

      Throughout the hotter weather however I realised this litter probably isnt the best for me, as my trays are in my conservatory (cats favourite place) and with the heat, the stench travels throughout the house!!
      My litter trays are spot cleaned daily, and emptied completely every other day (or more if needed) I would never leave a day for a few days with dried urine inside, who does that?!?! So I cant comment on how it performs after a few days!
      I use the bob martin litter freshener with this because the litter isnt fragranced and doesnt do a great job at masking any odours- however if you add on the price of buying litter freshener too- i may aswell buy a slightly more expensive litter!

      I will continue to buy this when its on offer as I only had a problem with it in the hottest days, when the poop smell got overpowering, even with one.
      My cats bury their waste, so youd think it would at least help a little bit!

      The bag the litter comes in, is paper and very easy to open and pour, its a handy size so also easy to store. At the minute im mixing it with pets at home non cluming clay litter, which is helping!
      Id recommend this product to someone who has a normal amount of cats haha!

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    • More +
      08.11.2013 22:38
      Very helpful
      (Rating)
      3 Comments

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      A fantastic food!

      The new Harry Hamster actually has a newer and much nicer packaging than the one pictured in this review!
      I have had my lovely long haired syrian for nearly 4 months now and he loves this food! Alongside others on the market, I found this to be a competitive price and of great quality!

      Price and lasting
      I buy this from my local pets at home store for just £2 per bag! When compared to others which are of equal price or higher priced (not including ones like tesco value, my hamster is worth more than that!), this so far has been my (and my hamsters) favourite choice!

      For £2, this food comes in a 700g bag which doesn't sound a lot, but when considering how much hamsters actually eat, it does last a while! So far my first bag of this food last me around 2 months! I am almost at the end of my second bag and won't even be considering another brand.
      That means to feed my hamster, it only costs me £1 per month! Nobody can complain at that.

      Contents
      The great thing about harry hamster food is the variation it provides. It has the usual hamster muesli which you'd find in any of the usual bags of hamster food alongside a range of nuts and seeds including the sunflower seed which has proven a favourite with my hamster named peanut!
      I like to give my hamster treats like dried sweetcorn, but the great thing about this food is that it also has sweetcorn in it!
      This hamster food provides a supplement towards the diet for hamsters, as the packaging states this food contains-
      8% of their fibre
      19% of their protein
      34 calories per 10g
      Which means they also need extra protein and fibre from other sources! Because of this I also make sure my hamster peanut gets plenty of treats, gnaw sticks and hamster extras for his cage!
      Any hamster owner should know a hamster also does need a mineral block and salt lick in their cage, which is where they get their daily minerals from!

      This food provides a range of sizes, many fit nice into my hamsters cheek pouches for him to carry around, and some perfect for him to hold and nibble on. In fact, most of the food I put in for peanut ends up being buried in the corner of his cage!

      I change my hamsters food every other day, as by that time he has usually eaten (or hidden) all his favourites out of his bowl and left the greens at the bottom! Hamsters are just like kids in that way, he enjoys the fatty peanuts and sweetcorn but he knows to leave his greens haha! Because of this, every other day I chuck out the remaining bits and replace it with fresh food, to make sure he gets plenty to eat!

      Overall
      I would really recommend this to anyone with a hamster, whether its a syrian or dwarf hamster, it is fantastic!
      For just £2 a bag which lasts me 2 months, I can't complain at the price, or the quality!

      Thankyou for reading, I also post on Ciao!

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      • More +
        20.09.2013 21:57
        Very helpful
        (Rating)
        4 Comments

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        Wouldn't recommend unless you have young kids, then it probably would be great fun!

        I have arrived back from Butlins at Skegness today after a 4 night break away. I found many fantastic things, and many disappointing which I can only describe in a review! This wasn't my first time at this resort, however the last time I went I was only 14, which made my experience much different! To round up how I am reviewing my stay at Butlins, I have to point out I am 21 and went with my partner who is 22, so our experience is based on the stay, food, general entertainment and things to do rather than the kiddies activities, as we did not go with a child. I felt for our age group, there just was not anything on which catered for our age group, and because of that, my stay this time around wasn't amazing.

        We paid £200 for 4 nights for a room only apartment with a premium dining plan which included breakfast and dinner.


        **Checking in
        Checking in, getting our keys and finding our room was fantastically easy! We didn't turn up until 3.30pm as our letter stated we could not access our room until 4pm- which I find to be far too late. Rather than wander around skegness or hang around the resort, as it was terrible weather that day, we decided to be sensible, and actually turning up at 3.30pm meant no queing or waiting! We could check straight in, get our keys and were told on a map how to find our room.
        Parking however is a different matter, by the time we got around to our area- which was in a bungalow, all of the spaces were taken. We would have had to park very far away from our area if it wasn't for my amazing parking skills and tiny car, as luckily I made my own parking space in a tiny little plot in between two car parking areas! As anyone arriving by car would have to drag all their luggage to their room, I found it really irritating that there were so little parking spaces! Our room I must add was on the opposite end of the bungalows, so we would have had to walk a long way!
        Butlins promise to not allow you to enter your room until 4.00pm is true I must add! My partner kept swiping our key card in desperation to get out of the rain, and the door clicked open dot on 4.00pm haha!


        **Checking out
        We were quite clueless when it came to checking out, all we knew is that we had to be out of our room by 10.00am- they made that clear! So we cleared up our room, got our bits in the car and went for breakfast!
        A cleaner pounced into room as soon as we stepped out of our door- no exaggeration! And as we left our room 45 minutes earlier than advised, we were quite shocked to be ushed out so quickly! So I really do not understand why we had to wait until 4.00pm to get into our rooms when checking in? We ended up leaving our keys with the cleaner, as we didn't know where to give them in, and it wasn't stated anywhere in our letter or welcome pack. Many people were leaving them with security on the way out, so im guessing everyone was clueless!
        We didn't get any sort of goodbye, not even someone dressed in a dinosaur outfit waving seeya! Nothing! In fact I felt like they were rushing us all out so they could get the next lot of guests in that day!
        There was a 15 minute que to get out of Butlins as it led out onto a main road, although as we were kicked out early we decided to gain another day away and spent the day at Ingoldmells before our 2 hour drive back home!


        **Our room
        We paid for 'room only' for our stay, as we couldn't be bothered to cook and paid for included breakfast and dinner in our stay.
        I must stay, I was pleasantly surprised with our room! As there were only two of us, I expected a tiny little bedroom with a bathroom, but we got much more! Our apartment had a hallway leading from the door, with a decent bathroom with a shower, and two rooms! We had one room with a double bed, and another with two singles, so we ended up using the spare room to store our clothes and bits!
        Our apartment came with two wardrobes and one closet for coats, along with a handy iron and a clothes horse. The heating comes on within minutes and heats up the room quickly, and there was a HD tv in our room- which was tiny, but fine for 4 days!
        I was dying for a cup of tea when we arrived after my 2 hour drive, so I was very pleased to find a kettle, tea bags, cups and glasses etc in our room!
        At Butlins, if you want a maid, you have to pay extra. In fact, if you want anything extra you have to pay. For example, Wi-fi costs £15 per device per stay, which I thought was disgusting.

        Bad points about our room- I didn't want to have to put any bad points, as I was pleased with our room.... however, all throughout our stay, my partner had terrible allergies and a bad chest, and it was not until we were tidying up to leave that we noticed our bedroom window frame covered in black mould!!! Condensation had been building up during our stay, which didn't appear to be affecting any other rooms, however the black mould was clearly not just from the last 4 days! You may wonder why we only noticed on our last day? Well the bedrooms have curtains, which have no net curtains, and is directly next to the walk way, so people can walk by and see you in bed! Because of this we kept the curtains closed all throughout our stay for privacy!


        **The Food
        WAS FANTASTIC! Initially we only paid £180 for the ordinary food court dining plan with our stay, but were offered to upgrade for only an extra £10 each for the whole stay! If I were to book this on their website, it would have cost £5.50 per person per day to upgrade, so we thought this was a bargain! And the food did not disappoint! There were different meats and different dishes on everyday! With a carvery section, pasta, jacket potatoes and also a fast food section which was either fish and chips or sausages etc.
        The puddings were also great! We had a different choice of cakes or fruit everyday, with also different crumbles with custards.

        There are staff going around clearing tables constantly as it was always busy, and at times I did get a bit annoyed as staff were trying to take our plates as soon as we'd finished, even with pudding still on the table. I wouldn't mind, but at one point my partner went for a drink and nearly had his dinner taken away! It was a bit like being abroad, if anybody has been away you'll know what I mean! And every member of staff who I came across in the dining area was actually foreign, which puzzled me!

        Breakfast in the premium restaurant is 8.00 till 11.00 which was great for us as we aren't early morning people at all!
        Dinner was between 4.00 and 7.00, so you get the options to have a early or late dinner, and we were told the meal slots were open longer than the cheaper food court options which was also a bonus!


        **Entertainment
        It's hard for me to comment on the entertainment, as we only went to one of the shows which was the 'live comedy' and to be fair, it. Was. Terrible. The comedian did jokes about kids, which most of the audience didn't get, and people like us who didn't have children were sat lost! The rest of the jokes were rubbish too, I actually felt sorry for the poor guy!
        The price of drinks were a rip off! We didn't expect them to be cheap, but we were charged £8.80 for one pint of lager and a coke with a shot of vodka! That didn't really make us want spend the night there!

        Every other organised entertainment was either things like music from the 70's- directed at the older generations, or 'meet fireman sam' 'have fun with billy bear' etc- really not for us! We found all the entertainment was either aimed at mature adults, or families with children.
        There's a cinema at Butlins... which shows again, either kids movies such as the smirfs, or poorly rated movies which wouldnt be worth wasting your money on.
        When we did go into the pavilion to play a game of bowling, we found it would cost us £10 for a game which would last about 15 minutes, so we decided against that!
        There are two arcades and grabber machines dotted around with a build a bear workshop, puppet shows, hair braiding and toy shops etc- so really all for kids!

        Butlins does have a swimming centre! And I would recommend going here, whatever age you are it is great! With famous slides, even ones which flow outside and stay running EVEN when it is raining outside, it is great fun! There are also areas separated for younger children, but also jacuzzi and fountains. The swimming centre is free during your stay so you can go as many times as you'd like! And I loved that the changing area is one shared room! There aren't separate male and female changing rooms, which is great for families, and we found it much easier to be able to share a locker. I guess many people would hate this arrangement, but I personally found it much more convenient. There are obviously private changing rooms, and in fact there's no room to get changed out in the open so it is quite civilised. Even though the pool was busy, we didn't have huge ques for the slides and never struggled for a locker or changing room, although this may be due to the time we went- as it wasn't the school holidays therefore not peak times.


        **Around Butlins
        At our stay in Butlins, we went out everyday. The first day, we spent the evening in Ingoldmells which is only a 20 minute walk in a straight line, or a 60p one way bus fare! The second day we went into Ingoldmells again, but made the mistake of paying for the red bus which comes directly into Butlins. Do NOT catch this bus it is a rip off! They charged us £4.80 for a return to Ingoldmells (a 2 minute journey) and as stagecoach- which run a lot more often only charge £2.40 for both of us return! In fact, we ended up stood in the rain waiting for the red bus and 5 stagecoach busses passed us in that waiting period!
        If you've never been to Skegness, I would definitely recommend going into Ingoldmells and Skegness as they are quite different and offer great days out whilst staying at Butlins.
        Our third day we went into Skegness, which cost us £6.80 for both of us return. In Skegness we went to the sealife and nature centre- and there are loads of shops!

        Butlins is also by the seaside, and there is a back door gate to access onto the sand which I could imagine would be great in the summer! So maybe if we went on a warmer season, we may have had more to do!


        **Overall
        We LOVED the food, as it was all you can eat and we didn't have to cook, so for us it was worth the money just for the food haha! We don't feel we overpaid for our holiday, but I wouldn't have liked to stay longer than 4 nights.
        It was a nice cheap break away with my partner, but if you don't have young children I wouldn't recommend going to Butlins im afraid. We found it quite boring, and if it wasn't for the surrounding areas, we would have had nothing to do. There's tonnes for kids, and even my partner agreed we'd think about going back when we have a little family, although it would have to be out of peak times as Butlins can be quite expensive during the busier times!

        Thank you for reading! I also post on Ciao.

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        • More +
          12.09.2013 22:00
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          I love this!

          I bought this cranberry drink when on a hunt in my local Tesco stores for a fruit juice which contained great taste, at a decent price without the huge levels of sugar!
          I personally can not drink mass amounts of fruit juice as I have quite sensitive teeth, and for this reason I also avoid eating most hard fruits! Drinking fruit juice of a high quality is a beneficial way of staying healthy, without getting the sensitive teeth. Cranberry juice isn't harsh on my teeth and yet it still fills my sugary sweet craving I get after breakfast! I find cranberry juice to be quite strong tasting, and the usual ocean spray juice is quite high in calories, so when I noticed this light version, I had to try it!

          Benefits!
          The benefits of having this light version, is that is has no added sugar! Meaning the calorie content is fantastically low! This drink contains just 20 calories per 250ml serving! In fact, I don't even count the calories in this when watching my calorie intake (on the days I decide to try dieting).
          This juice is low on calories, yet high on flavour! What I love about this light version is that is doesn't have that overpowering sour hit to it that the normal cranberry juice does. I personally prefer it this way, however I could see it being a down point to those who enjoy the kick!

          The other bits..
          This juice also has 3.5g of naturally occurring fruit sugars, and 0g of fat, saturates or salt per 250ml serving! I am happy with this juice in terms of what it contains, and it fits in great with my usual breakfast or after dinner when I am craving a pudding and have ran out of cake! Haha!

          Price!
          This drink is quite often on offer at my local tesco stores for just £1! It has also recently been on an offer for buy one get one free, but my latest purchase cost me £1.25 per bottle- the most I have paid! I am not complaining however, I still find it a great buy and I can't see myself changing anytime soon!

          This juice comes in a 1litre bottle, and as I am (usually) the only one in my house drinking it, it lasts me quite a while. The bottle does say to consume within 4 days of opening, but I have never been one to listen to rules, and this juice to me stays fresh for much longer!

          The bottle is now slightly different to the picture shown in this review, it has been developed and improved with a much more eye catching picture and an easy to open lid which I find really easy to pour, or drink out of!- The greatness of not having to share your drinks!

          Thankyou for reading, I also post on Ciao!

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        • La Femme Nail Polish / Make Up / 33 Readings / 33 Ratings
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          19.06.2013 21:47
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          Perfect for the price!

          I have recently got into nail varnish a lot more than what I used to! Although with my job, I constantly have my hands wet and most nail varnishes tend to peel of and chip easily.
          I have tried a few colours from this brand, and I really do not like the way they settle on my nails, the brushes can be too rough and the varnish becomes thick and gluey very easily!
          However, I no longer use the plain shades of varnishes, as I find I am forever having to redo the tips of my nails, and it looks messy straight away, and no brand easily covers over previous layers without looking a mess! Because of this, I now only use the recently popular glitter types!

          Price
          I recently bought one of these nail varnishes for just £1 from the market! I am unaware of any shops at present which stock it as a usual thing, and as far as I am aware, it is only available in the cheaper stores such as saves or online. On amazon, you can buy this brand for between £1.49 to around £3 for different shades or designs.
          I picked up a clear nail varnish, with pink glitter and small pieces of sequins inside!

          Application
          As with this glittery nail varnish, I find it very easy to apply as I don't need to worry about getting it as a smooth or even layer! The varnish is quite gluey and thick, although does apply quite easily for this design. I find it easier to stroke the varnish on to coat my nails, and then dab it on to get more glitter and sequins, to attain the depth of glitter I wish!
          The first mistake I made when using this, was painting one hand, then the next, then going back to the first hand to add a bit more- with this nail varnish you have to wait until it is completely dry before adding anymore layers, as the varnish becomes even more gluey and sticky, and it makes a mess of your nails if you try to add anymore before the first layer is bare dry!
          Although I did learn from that mistake, and I can now apply it with ease!
          Because the varnish is very thick and gluey, the drying time seems to take forever! Even when I apply this outside and waft my arms around like a daft looking bird trying to take off, it still takes about 20 minutes to become completely dry! I find if I do try to pick something up or touch them before that time, it is very soft and can easy be pushed off your nails!

          Lasting
          I do find if I apply a layer which is quite thick- to get the most glitter and sequins, the thicker areas tend to peel off a lot easier, although in other places it does last quite well. As my hands go through a lot with work, I never expect much from my nail varnishes in terms of them lasting! Which is why I only tend to paint my nails on my day off! Although I am very impressed with the lasting power of this varnish! The first time I used it, I put quite a thick layer on, so the tips peeled off quite easily, however towards the center of my nail, I even struggled to try to pick it off! Instead I ended up just painting another layer over the top of the old one (of the same glittery colour) and its fantastic as theres no obvious signs of it!

          I have now started trying to paint a top coat, or just a clear varnish over the top to smooth out the feel of the sequins- which isn't that rough to be honest, and give it a firmer hold, so fingers crossed this helps!

          Overall
          As I only paid £1 for this nail varnish, I wasn't expecting much. However I am quite surprised, it is now one of my favourites to use! I will definitely keep using it, and I may even get some different shades from the glittery range! The varnish is quite thick and gluey which is the only thing which puts me off, as it makes it harder to dry! Although once the varnish is on and dry, I find it quite hard wearing and very decent!
          Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao.

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          • More +
            19.06.2013 21:19
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            Why not buy these?!

            I have used a huge variety of fish food and products over the past years, and like everyone else I want the best for my pet! When it comes to price, I usually don't consider how much it costs, and I usually just go for something which is high in protein, a reliable brand, and will last me a while to keep me going! However after buying my 10th aquarium recently, it has become more important than ever to find a food at good value price of which will last me a few weeks or months, and more importantly, something which my fish which actually eat!

            **Diet**
            I always vary the diet of my fish, from live food such as blood worms and daphnia, to frozen bloodworms, freeze dried and also the ready made flake food to ensure they are getting a varied and full diet! My fish also snack on fresh veg such as cucumber and enjoy peas and potato! They also nip at the algae wafers and pellets I add in for my catfish and bottom feeders.
            I went through a period where I wasn't at home much, so I would just chuck in a few blood worms when I could and my fish were fine, however I did fine they become fussy with their food and wouldn't accept any flakes for a while! When I recently moved, I decided it was time to vary their diet again, as they had been living off blood worms and algae wafers for a while, which concerned me!

            I picked up a tub of the pets at home value whilst looking for a decent flake food, as I didn't want to spend a load and waste money on something my fish wouldn't eat, but I also wanted something of a high protein content.

            **Quality**
            When comparing the protein content of these flakes compared to the prices of the others, I was quite surprised! As the protein content of others brands were not much less, the difference was literally between 1 and 5% difference, but with a much higher price tag!
            For example,
            King british flakes are £3.89 for a 28g tub
            Aquarian flakes are a hefty £4.50 for a 25g tub
            Nutrafin flakes are £4.79 for a 38g tub

            As these pets at home value flakes are only
            £2.29 for a 25g tub, they come up the cheapest out of the range, with only a tiny bit of difference with quality!
            These value flakes contain 40% protein! Which is fine for the average community fish, although I do tend to feed more live foods to my pregnant fish, or when conditioning for breeding.

            After a week or so of just feeding these flakes, my fish eventually started eating them again, and are now back onto their varied diet!
            The flakes are all very brightly coloured, which means we can also grind them up very finely to feed to the fry once they are big enough to eat flakes, and they can easily find the food. With the bright red, black, yellow and green colours, my fish have fun grabbing the flakes as they rest on the water surface. The flakes are also easy to sink by just pushing them down to get them saturated.

            One tub of these flakes will last you depending on the amount of fish you keep and how much you feed, for example if you have just one tank of guppies, one tub will last you months! Remember, they only need a tiny amount! If any flakes start to sink to the bottom, remove them and stop feeding as you are feeding too much! With a good few tanks, I am about half way down my 25g tub so far, and I have been using it for about 4 months, so I am happy! With a price of just £2.29, and approximately 8 months out of one tub, that is just 28p pet month!

            Pets at home also do the cold water variety in this for just £1.99, although if you are wondering, you can feed your goldfish these flakes, the only difference is that they require less protein, and as the tropical flakes are higher in protein, just be careful how much you feed them!

            Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao!

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            13.06.2013 21:14
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            A great buy.

            Clear seal sell a range of aquariums of various shapes and sizes, the usual rectangular shaped ones can be found in the pets at home stores or on their website.
            The current sizes are as followed-
            18x10x10 inch with a plastic hood for £25
            24x15x12 inch for £35
            30x15x12 inch £40
            36x15x12 inch for £55
            48x15x12 inch for £75

            The prices are just for the tank itself, with usually a bottle of tap safe and general goldfish flakes, although it is generally the glass itself you are paying for.
            I currently have 4 clear seal tanks, and I bought another of the 24x15x12 inch today, which measures up to be a 67 litre tank. I feel the £35 I paid was fantastic, as this tank is a 2 foot tank! Although the clear seals do not come with the usually set up such as the filter and heater, other tanks of this size with the bits in can cost about £100! I know this as I was weighing up my options, and again went for the class frame to add in my own choice of filter and heater. As I am a enthusiastic fish keeper, I have developed a personal preference of brands and I like to be able to pick and chose a filter and heater which I know is reliable and hard wearing. As This clear seal tank is to be used to grow out my young danio, cherry barb and betta fry, I will be adding in a sponge filter, specialised for fry.
            It is important however that you understand the litre of the tank you are buying in order to buy the correct size heater and filter, although clear seal do provide you with a chart to work this out.

            Most of the clear seals do not come with lids! For me, I don't mind, as I like to leave my tanks as open top, although if you plan on keeping any fast or top swimming it may be wise to purchase or create some sort of lid. Hatchet fish are well known to jumping out, and I have also lost a few danio fish from jumping out of the tank when they dart about! So I would recommend buying a lid if you need a tank for general community fish. A lid would also help cut down the amount of dust or other poisons such as sprays which can land on the water, and keep in any water which tries to evaporate! Without a lid, I lose approximately 1 inch of water a week from each of my tanks, which means they need topping up regularly to ensure heaters, filters and plants are kept submersed.
            Clear seal do make their own fit to measure lids, although for the £35 clear seal I bought, the specialised lid would cost me... wait for it... £35! The price of the lids is an absolute rip off! How they can charge the same price as the tanks is beyond me, so I would recommend finding either the right sized condensation tray, or one of the older style clear seal lids which as far as I know have been discontinued.

            The clear seal tanks are made with flat glass, which are very easy to clean and maintain, and I find the glass OK for viewing, although when taking photos it may help the quality if a higher grade was used, although as this would boost up the price of the tank quite a lot, I am happy with the grade that is being used! The clear seal tanks are just that- clear seals! The silicone used on the tanks does not leave ugly black marks around the edges, and gives the tank an overall clear appearance.

            When setting up for your clear seal, I can not stress enough how important it is to give the tank a huge check over for any cracks, splits or gaps in the silicone! As you could be halfway through filling up the tank before it gives way and turns your living room into a swimming pool!
            So far, none of my clear seal tanks have encountered leaks, and my oldest clear seal has been in use for 5 years and undergone loads of re-positioning, with a recent house move. Although tank sealant can be found for about £5 per tube if you ever need it! Fingers crossed that you don't, but it will be aquarium sealant you need, never use any sort of DIY sealant as they can contain poisons which can leak into your tank! If you ever need to use the sealant, I recommend the king british type although bare in mind it stinks of vinegar and salt and can sting your eyes, but is very strong!

            Any new aquarium will need to be rinsed out before use, to get rid of any dust or any other pieces of dirt that you don't want in your tank! It is also important to ensure you have a suitable aquarium stand or flat surface strong enough to hold whichever size tank you have, and every single edge and corner of the tank must be supported! If the surface is not flat, or you leave the tank hanging over the edge of a stand, it will create weak points and risks your tank failing, splitting, cracking and leaking!
            It is best to choose whereabout the tank will be before filling it up, although I'd imagine you have a clue as to where you want it go before you purchased it? Don't try to fill the tank up, and then pick it up! As if like me you went for the 67 litre tank, that is 67kg to pick up! Even half full it will be 33.5 kg and is enough to cause pressure points on the tank when lifting.
            Try where possible to not position the tank near a window, as too much light or natural sunlight can cause algae booms and you will find yourself forever cleaning the glass and complaining about how dirty your tank looks!

            Overall
            I love my clear seals, I will continue to keep buying them! Out of the 10 aquariums I now have, 5 of them are clear seals! I would recommend them to anybody who already has some sort of knowledge around fish, as you need to find your own filter and heater (if needed) and get a suitable cabinet. The only bad point with these tanks is that they do not come with any sort of hood or condensation tray! It wouldn't be so bad if the prices of the hoods were not so high!

            Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao

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              08.06.2013 22:18
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              A fantastic purchase from Boots.

              I like to try new things with my hair, and I hate just leaving it down every day. I also hate using any sort of hair tool which doesn't give me quality results fast! I have a hectic lifestyle and I am the worst for planning my time, which means I often need to straighten my hair within just a few minutes, so I was after a decent hair straightener which would straighten my hair and provide lasting results.
              I have been used to using wide plate GHD's whilst living with my mum, however I didn't want to pay the £100 odd pounds which they cost, so I was looking for something which would give me the same results, but for a cheaper price.
              I read about these straighteners online when having a quick browse, but at their usual retail price of £79.99 I wasn't too excited to jump for them. Thankfully though, on a random shop out one day I had a quick browse down my local boots hair accessories isle and saw these on offer for £39.99! With only one left, I just had to have them! I was very excited about my purchase and couldn't wait to use them!
              Since moving into my own house 3 months ago, I have been left using small cheap straighteners which didn't keep my hair straight for long and needed a lot of time to get through small sections of my hair at a time, so buying these wide plate meant I could hopefully spend less time doing my hair, and get better results.

              ***Features***
              Like the GHD's, these straighteners have a temperature control and allow you to adjust from light, medium, long and thicker hair which is very useful as if you've got fine hair, you can turn the temperature down accordingly. I currently use my straighteners on the long setting, as I wanted to see how effective they were when I didn't use them on full power, and so far they are great! The straighteners can go up to 230 degrees, meaning they straighten very quickly even on curly hair.
              The straighteners have automatic shut off, so if you ever forget to switch them off, they turn off automatically after a set amount of time- however the box doesn't state how long this is!
              The straighteners have ceramic plates, matching the GHD's and many other high quality straighteners.
              These are a lovely shade of red which makes them unusual and attractive!

              ***Results***
              I have had these for about 2 weeks at the moment, and so far I have been extremely impressed! I occasionally wash my hair before bed, drying it enough to sleep without wetting my pillow and waking up in the morning looking like a poodle, although I have found these straighteners are very effective and easy to use, they straighten out my curls no problem and hold my hair straight all day! When I have used these, I do still need to do over a few parts of my hair the next day, although this is not a problem and the lasting of it is far better than my old straighteners.
              With the ceramic plates, I find these make my hair feel very soft, they straighten my hair without drying it out or making it feel rough, and my hair feels silky soft all day after using them.
              I have always sectioned my hair when going through it with the straighteners, to get perfect results throughout and ensure it is all straight, however with these straighteners if I am in a hurry I can go over my hair in large parts and still get great results.

              When straightening my hair, I find these very easy and soft to handle, I never have to worry about burning myself or the handle getting too hot, and as the straighteners have a border around the plates which is rounded and soft, I can go up to my root comfortably without any problems.
              The cord length is fantastic! I am not sure of an exactly measurement, but id say it is about 2 metres which is great as I can now plug them in and sit at my dressing table without worrying about if the straighteners are going to reach!

              ***Overall***
              I am very pleased with my purchase, I would recommend these to anybody! Unfortunately the wide plate variety is only available at Boots, but for the fantastic price they are currently on it is a bargain! My hair is easy to style after using these, and it stays straighter for longer. I find them so easy to use and so effective that I can get great results within minutes rather than having to spend ages concentrating on each small section!

              Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao.

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                07.06.2013 14:21
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                I won't be buying these again.

                I use face wipes daily, and I tend to go for whatever is on offer at the time when I am doing my shopping. Whilst I normally go for the cheaper varieties like the tesco own brand which I must point out works fine for me, I thought I'd try something different and went for the johnsons range.
                I picked my pack up for just £1.70 on offer at the time at Tesco, however the usual price is about £3, Superdrug or Tesco. I wouldn't ever have paid the full price for these, as I get through a pack quite quickly and I have found cheaper brand work just as well for me.

                The product.
                The product advertises to contain moonflower aroma, be suitable for all skin types and remove even waterproof mascara. The packs come as a 25 pack, which is about average when comparing it to other brands, and I found the wipes themselves to be very thick, smooth and easy to use.
                The moonflower aroma gives these wipes a lovely light floral smell which lasts on your skin, and when using the wipes I didn't find my skin was left feeling oily or wet, the product sinks in and dries pretty quickly.
                I use face wipes to cleanse my skin, and to also remove my eye makeup, and when reviewing the product on these two areas, I am completely torn.
                The wipes cleanse my skin well, removing all foundation and making my skin feel clean and smooth with no irritation or issues to mention, however with the product stating 'removes even waterproof mascara' I was expecting a gentle yet effective eye make up removing wipe.
                When using these wipes on my eyes, it's all good until about 20 seconds after I have finished removing my makeup. My eyes began to sting so much that it hurt to open them, and when rubbing my eyes in the attempt to sooth them, my lids and lashes felt oily. I continued to finish the pack as I loved their effect on my skin, and I decided to give these the benefit of the doubt, and again I used them on my eyes. The same horrible stinging sensation happened again, and I left feeling very disappointed.
                For a product to claim that it removes eye make up and stating on the back that it is "gentle enough to use around the sensitive eye area" I was expecting a face wipe that would gently remove my mascara with no problems, however I was left in frustrated agony at the burning sensation on both attempts to use this. Because of this issue, I am only giving these wipes 1 star, which may seem harsh as I thought their cleansing effects on the skin was great and I have used the whole pack because of this, however I only purchased these for my eye makeup removing promises, and I feel very let down and disappointed.

                Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao.

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                06.06.2013 11:48
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                Another fantastic product by Fluval!

                Me and my partner are very much into fish! Working with fish and with having 9 tanks to feed our hobby, it is easy to see how I have come across many different filters throughout the years.
                Fluval have always been my favourite brand, and they always will be! When it comes to tanks themselves or filters, Fluval always create top quality products.
                They may be slightly more expensive than other cheaper brands, however I would definitely recommend Fluval for their ease of use, value products and long term reliability.
                I picked my U1 filter up from my local pets at home store which cost me £26. Other varieties of this filter can also be found, with the prices as followed.

                U1 - filter rate of 250lph - suitable for tank size up to 55 litres costing £26
                U2 - filter rate of 400lph - suitable for tank size up to 110 litres costing £36
                U3 - filter rate of 800lph - suitable for tank size up to 150 litres costing £47
                U4 - filter rate of 1000lph - suitable for tank size up to 240 litres costing £52

                Unfortunately at my local store they don't stock any internal filters for anything higher than 240 litres, and I'm not even sure if Fluval make them. Although this may be due to the fact that many fish keepers with larger tanks prefer external filters, or multiple smaller filters.
                The size of the filter you will need will depend on not only the size of your tank, but also the stocking density you have your tank at. For example, if like me you have a 100 litre heavily planted with quite a few fish in, it may be better to go for the U3 to give your tank extra support.
                The prices of these filters may seem quite high, and if you are planning on buying your tank, stand, heater and filter separately then it can sometimes add up and it may be worthwhile buying one of fluvals tank packs instead which come with everything!- (However that is another review to be done)

                I have had my U1 for about 1 year now, and my U3 for over 4 years and both filters are going strong. I would have a fluval filter in every tank if I could, however my other tanks are either running off sponge filters- for breeding, or filters which are built into the design of the aquarium.

                **Where does my filter go?
                This fluval filter is an underwater filter, which means it does need to be completely under water. You can raise the filter slightly so the outtake is disturbing the water surface, and this is very beneficial as it ensures a high level of gas exchange and keeps the oxygen levels high in your tank. Although the filters also come with an optional cap on the top which you can remove to either attach an air pump, or leave it to allow air to be sucked through, which makes the outtake also spit out bubbles.
                The suckers on the filter come off very easily when moving it about the tank, so it is best to know where you want to place your filter before trying to stick it in all different places, because trust me, the suckers can be irritating to get back on.
                If you place your filter in a corner, with the nozzle pointing towards the glass of the aquarium, the flow will circulate around your tank, rather than blast through the middle of the aquarium and throw your fish around! However the position doesn't matter too much with your filter, as long as it is upright with nothing blocking its intake.
                If your filter isn't blowing out water, or becomes noisy, try turning your filter upside down as it may have air inside causing the propeller to struggle. To avoid this, it is best to turn your filter upside down under the water before you stick it to the side of the glass, as this will allow any air to escape before you position it to your tank.

                **First Use.
                For those who are new to fish keeping, a filter may look like rocket science, and it may also sound like it when someone explains the cycling process to you, however one you have got over the 'new tank syndrome' aquariums are easy to run and fun to keep, just remember by using a filter, you are meeting the requirements of the RSPCA and providing a happy and healthy home for your fishy friends!
                When you first set up these fluval filters, like any other, they are extremely powerful and may push everything around your tank. This is because the filter is brand new, with no bacteria or waste in the sponges. This is why it is so important to have your tank set up for 3 days before adding any fish, as you need to get the filter settled and set up correctly to make it safe for adding your fish lot of fish.
                The best thing about the fluval filters, and what puts them apart from the rest is the feature of the adjusting how powerful the filter is! On my U1, and U3 also, you can adjust how much of the propeller is exposed thus adjusting the flow and speed of the filter. This is particularly useful for keeping slow moving or smaller fish as they can sometimes struggle to keep up with the flow of a new filter.

                **The important facts about your aquarium filter.
                When setting up a new filter, whether you are using it in an old tank, with old water or with old gravel, you MUST let it cycle. By this I mean, there is no bacteria living in your filter, which means the ammonia and waste fish constantly produce will be in your water until the bacteria levels can manage to break down the ammonia into nitrite. You then have to wait another week to 3 weeks for another bacteria to develop to be able to break down your nitrite into nitrate. Nitrate is far less harmful to your fish and in fact you can have levels of nitrate in your tank without it hurting your fish, and it eventually gets removed by being used up by plants, or diluted through water changes.
                Ammonia and Nitrite are extremely harmful to fish, and many fish can not tolerate even a very small amount of either of them, which is why it is also important to choose the correct fish to first add into your tank to get your filter cycling.
                Avoid fish like neon tetras which can be very sensitive, and guppies also aren't the best to use for this period. Danio's and mollies are a lot hardier and can tolerate small levels of ammonia or nitrite as your filter is developing to cope with your fishy waste.

                See what I mean? It's not rocket science, but a filter is not just something you plug in and forget about.
                There are things you can add in to boost your filter and support it through this first process of getting set up.
                Nutrafin Cycle is an amazing product and reliable brand, they do a product which contains the live bacteria which you require in your filter. You can add an amount of this to support your filter, which you can also use after every filter clean and when adding new fish, and as a general weekly or monthly support.
                This product costs £7.49 for a 120ml bottle, or £11.99 for a 250ml bottle.
                Pets at home also do their own brand of this, called love fish filter boost which you can get for £3.99, however my experience with this one isn't as successful.

                **Filter maintenance.
                The Fluval filters come with some sort of carbon, which in the U1 is in the form of a cartridge. Carbon is very useful and helps for clearer water, however carbon has an expiry life of approximately 4-6 weeks, and after this time it will leak toxins back into your water! I tend to usually just remove my carbon and either leave that section empty, or replace it with another filter sponge, as you do not NEED carbon, however it is useful as it soaks up nitrates and other harmful metals. Although if you ever need to use a fish treatment for any sort of illness such as white spot or fungus, the carbon also soaks up this ingredient and so you will need to remove the carbon before using any treatments.
                You will need to remove the filter sponges approximately once a month, or more often if necessary. ~Just like a vacuum cleaner, you will see your filter struggling and the speed of the water being allowed through will be dramatically lowered, which is an indication your filter is full.
                The fluval filters are very easy to take apart to clean! However when I say 'clean' I do not mean use fairy liquid and give it a good scrub, remember we are talking about bacteria! Any sort of soap will kill your filters bacteria and put you back to stage one, which will cause your filter to re-cycle again, which is very bad news if you have already stocked your tank up, and you will more than likely loose a few fishy friends!
                When cleaning your filter, all you need to do is take out the sponges, by lifting up the top of the filter (on the U1) and removing the sponge, or sponges depending on how many they give you. The U1 comes with just one easy sponge. You must never use tap water for cleaning your filter sponges, as the chlorine in your water will also kill off the bacteria! Using an old jug or clean mug, remove some water from your aquarium, and use this to wash your sponges in by giving them a shake and rub with your fingers. You will never be able to remove all of the dirt this way, and your sponge will never look brand new, but as long as you remove the clumps and soggy waste which is clogging up your filter this is fine!
                Every now and then also, you will need to access the propeller in the filter which is also easy to get to, on the U1 you will need to access the filter from the bottom by squeezing the two sides together and forcing it off. The propeller will overtime get clogged with something called protein slime, it is natural but will eventually cause the propeller to struggle and it may even stop spinning. Many people assume at this time that their filter has broke and stopped working, but 9 times out of 10 it is down to their propeller needing a good clean!

                Overall, this is a fantastic range of filters, easy to use and easy to maintain. I have always used and trusted Fluval, and would recommend them to anybody with any level of fish keeping experience!
                Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao!

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                  02.06.2013 21:38
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                  The charlie red has always been one of my favourites, and I've always got a few bottles of the perfume around my house. The charlie range is a cheap affordable yet decent body fragrance, and the enchanted variety is a new smell to the group.

                  I picked up a pack of perfume with this body spray from boots after christmas for £4 in the sale, however it can currently be bought for £6.70 on amazon for the set, or £1.70 at boots for just the body spray.
                  In my opinion, £1.70 is steep for a 75ml bottle of body spray, although there are usually offers on at different stores, and I wouldn't normally pay over £1 for one bottle.

                  ***My usage****
                  I have never been a big fan of body sprays, as I usually use a deodorant spray to keep my smelling fresh, and a perfume to keep me smelling nice, I have never really saw the need for a body spray until recently.
                  As I work in a pet shop, I don't want to cover myself in perfume, and I find a body spray a handy way of smelling nice without it getting up your nose- which is also beneficial to the little animals I have to handle daily.
                  I have a few varieties of charlie body spray so one bottle has been lasting me a while considering I don't use it very much. I probably use this smell about twice a week, and have had this one bottle for about 2 months which is great as it is one of my favourites out of the lot.

                  ***Smell***
                  Compared to the charlie red, which was originally my all time favourite, this enchanted spray smells a lot sweeter. I really love the smell on my clothes, however unlike the charlie red, I have never receieved any compliments when wearing it.
                  I find that at the end of the day, there isn't much hint of it being on my clothes, so the staying power of the body spray is pretty poor- compared to the charlie perfumes which I find have a great lasting power.
                  The scent of this enchant spray reminds me of children's perfumes, and I personally think it would better suit younger teens. It doesn't have one of those 'get up your nose' strong floral smells which I tend to avoid, so for that reason I will continue to use it until it is all gone.

                  ***Overall***
                  I probably wouldn't have bought this version without it being on offer at the time, however the charlie red is still my favourite so i'm unsure if I would bother buying this type again.
                  I won't bother with buying anymore body sprays just as it is quite high priced and the lasting power is pretty poor. As I already use deodorant, I could probably make do with that plus my perfume, so I don't really feel much need for a body spray. However when I do get to the end of this bottle, I will look for a longer lasting spray if I end up needing one.
                  Overall my opinion would be, this range and the perfumes are perfect for children and young teens as a first time perfume, I still love it from when I was 11 and will continue to use my charlie red as I have had many compliments from it. This smell however has not drawn such reactions, and although I personally like the smell, it doesn't seem to last very long.

                  Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao.

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                • Sony Xperia S / Mobile Phone / 43 Readings / 37 Ratings
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                  01.06.2013 23:59
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                  Fantastic phone, great for what I need it for.

                  I am not hugely technical, so when reviewing my phone I will be talking about the features I use and what I get from them with my personal opinions.
                  In terms of phones, I am normally one to keep trying and keep buying until I find one I can settle with. I have had this xperia s now for coming up 9 months, and it still feels new to me. I don't mean that in a bad way, I am still finding new things on my phone and learning more about it. So far, it has been fine for me, and a definite upgrade compared to my old phone the ZTE Grand X!.
                  I have this phone in the white version, and to be honest it was the colour which sold me more than anything, and the large screen. I always go for screen size when buying a new phone, as all I ever tend to use my phone for is playing games and looking on the internet. I have only recently started to use my phone for music for the gym, and I am not one to text or make calls very much.
                  I got my handset from the phones 4 u store, and as far as I know, they are the only ones who sell the white version of this phone.
                  This phone is H128, W64, D10.6mm and with a slim design I find the phone fits easily in my hand and is very easy to use with one hand. With a weight of 144g, it's not very heavy yet doesn't feel very light and flimsy.


                  ***Price***
                  The prices may have changed from my purchase 9 months ago, and as my purchase was a quick buy after I had enough of the issues with my old phone, I can not remember the exact price I paid. It was around £270 which I paid, which at the time was fantastic considering the others on offer at a much higher price with matching performance.
                  The current prices for this phone are-
                  Argos- Black £279.95
                  Sony Website- Both colours, £249

                  ***The phone overall***
                  I have been very pleased with the overall performance of this phone, i find it very easy to make calls and send texts. This phone has the swype option for texting which I absolutely love as my old samsung phone has this feature, it makes texting much quicker and easier. I found it very easy to figure out how to make calls and texts the quick way, which can be done straight from the address box or through quick links which can be personalised onto the home screen.
                  The phone does not scratch easily, however I have always used a screen cover on mine for extra protection. The phone is a lovely soft matt white and although I usually use either a leather flip case or back case, when used alone I don't find the phone picks u dirt easily and it fits into my hand nicely.
                  I have dropped this phone a few times- everyone makes mistakes! However luckily for me, it doesn't scratch or chip easily and mine is still in fantastic condition.
                  The phone also has a front facing camera, which although isn't as good as the normal camera, it comes in handy for video calling or taking pictures of yourself- not that i do that a lot!

                  The screen is a 4.3inch clear full HD touchscreen, which proves great for watching trailers, using youtube or playing games. I don't tend to watch movies on my handset, as I have a laptop and tablet for that! Although I do get many hours of playing candy crush on this phone!
                  I have no complaints regarding the speed of this phone, as it is a quad band with 32gb internal memory, I find it nippy and very reliable, even when I have multiple apps running.

                  The phone does have a HDMI slot which allows you to view your videos and pictures on your TV- this is great entertainment for the kids, especially when you set it up onto video mode and see their faces as they walk past and see themselves on TV!

                  ***Camera***
                  I take a lot of photos on my phone, and it has been very reliable so far. As I packed away all of my items, including my camera for moving, I have used this phone a lot over the past few months for very special days and events, and have got some lovely photos from it. The camera does have a flash which is a huge plus, as I had a phone without a flash in the past so I am all too aware of the limitations you can face from that.
                  This phone has a fantastic 12 mega pixel camera, which is even better than my kodak camera! The shutter speed is pretty good too, which means I can easily catch perfect pictures. When photographing in movement however, it can be tricky to get decent pictures, especially when taking pictures of my nephew and neice, I often have to take a dozen photos to be able to pick out a clear one, although I am happy with the quality of the pictures as a phone camera.
                  The camera has the ability of up to 16x zoom, meaning I am able to capture lovely sights when out on walks. The quality of the picture does drop when using zoom, however it is still handy to have.
                  With full HD 1080p recording, I love being able to take great quality pictures and watch them back, seeing the full quality of the picture.
                  Overall, the quality of the camera and video recording is fantastic for this phone, and is a great selling point.

                  ***Internet***
                  I use the internet a lot on my phone, and I find the service plan you are on and the phone provider you are with has a large impact on the quality of internet usage. I am currently having problems with the 3G signals from orange, so I am mainly relying on wifi at the moment. I know this is a problem with my service provider, as my 3G worked fine when I first got it, it is only recently that I have moved and noticed the problem.
                  You can open many windows at once when on the internet, which is useful for comparing products when buying and shopping around. The internet can be reached from the google link on the home screen, although this can be personalise and removed.
                  When leaving the internet, holding the home button brings up all the open apps and allows me to close everything I am not using which helps avoid lagging, however this doesn't close the windows I have open within the browser and occasionally it will tell me to close some windows as I have reached my max- although this is easy to do.

                  If you have a an account with google mail, you can log in using your account name and get the play application which allows you to download apps, games or music etc. I personally prefer the play store to the usual android store as I find it easier to use. If you have used the play store on a previous phone, they will all be saved on the play application and you can easily select them from this list to reinstall them onto your new phone.

                  ***Connectivity***
                  This phone does have wifi and bluetooth, as most phones do nowadays. However I find it important to also mention the bluetooth on this phone works fine and is very easy to use, as I have found with many other phones previously bluetooth can be a pain to get working right. There is an option on this phone to alter the length of visibility time when using bluetooth, and I have always found it easy to set up and send photos and receive photos across.

                  ***Memory***
                  This phone DOES NOT have the option to use an external micro sim, which really annoyed me when I first got it, as I had a 8gb micro card saved with all of my images and music ready to put into my new phone. So please note if you are wanting to buy this phone, you will need to transfer the data onto a laptop or something and then connect your phone to your laptop, this will be an easier way of transferring it over.
                  Having said this, this phone does come with a fantastic 1gb Ram and 32gb of internal memory! I have downloaded loads of music, taken hundreds of photos and installed loads of applications and so far my phone has not slowed down or had a problem with saving anything.

                  ***Battery***
                  I always find the battery life a very important part of reviewing phones, as a crappy battery life can really have impact on the enjoyment you get out of your handset.
                  As I currently use mine for a heavy ammount of gaming- being addicted to candy crush, I tend to charge my phone every night. However this is just as a convenience and habit of mine, as I do find most nights my battery is still on over 50% even after about an hour of gaming and light internet and txts.
                  The internet doesn't tend to drain my battery, in fact I only ever notice my battery life running down when I am playing games for an extended amount of time. In the evenings, I usually spend around 45 minutes on my games, which can take my battery down by around 20% on average, which isn't too bad as I am at home and able to recharge it, but for this reason I avoid playing games whilst at work or early on in the day to avoid any battery issues.
                  Having said all of this, considering my previous experience with phones, I am pretty pleased with the battery life and have no complaints.

                  ***Overall***
                  Overall, I am pretty pleased with my phone, I have not got bored of it so far which is quite good for me! I really enjoy using this phone, I find the camera great, the phone very nippy, the screen size perfect for what I want to use it for, and the design is lovely. I have never had any problems in terms of this phone crashing or being unresponsive, so I have no complaints!
                  I would recommend this phone, however it is being discontinued in many stores including phones 4 u, which is a shame! I have never been dragged into the craze of iphones, and I will never be embarrassed to show off my 'old range' Xperia S!


                  Thank you for reading, I also post on Ciao.

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