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claireislafrazer

claireislafrazer
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Member since: 05.08.2008

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    • Vesta Chow Mein / Ready Meals / 32 Readings / 30 Ratings
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      10.11.2008 14:20
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      Great to have once in a while

      Last weekend I wanted to have a vesta meal that I had remembered having many years ago. The meal was their chow mein and the thing I remembered most about it was the crispy noodles which puffed and spiralled when you put them in oil.

      At first I was a bit disheartened because I was in sainsburys and couldnt find any vesta meals at all, I asked for some assistance and was told that they dont sell them anymore! So I went onto Tesco price check to have a look and see if anyone sells them and found yes indeed it is sold in all the major supermarkets apart from Sainsburys.

      Off I went to Tesco and sure enough found them there and they cost 1.30. and found they also sold a beef curry, I didnt get that though but decided to get two boxes of the chow mein. One box serves one person.

      The box was exactly how I remembered it. A square cardboard box with a black background. Vesta is written in white with a red background on the top left corner, underneath it says "chow mein" in a i presume chinese looking black font on a yellow square. Around those titles is a liee green frame of chinese design with a little dragon in the four corners. There is also a hexangonal green shape with a chinese palace on it saying "Shanghai, China" which I guess is where the meal comes from. The rest of the front of the box is a picture of the finished meal on a black plate. It looks very tasty. You can see plenty of soft golden noodles which look like tagliatelle pasta with minced beef and what appears to be a scattering of peas and chopped pepper pieces. The crispy noodles are piled on top and look like curly quavers crisps but thinner.

      I just noticed on the top of the box there is a picture of a briefcase handle which is a bit odd. Anyway, on the back are the ingredients, cooking instructions and nutritional information. To stand out from the back backround these are written on a yellow background. Also there are a few lines talking about chinese dragons and saying that they lived on human sacrifices because they didnt have any vesta meals to eat.

      It says that the Chow Mein consists of soft noodles with chopped, shaped beef, vegetables, soya mince, crispy noodles and soy sauce. The vegetables are carrots, green beans, red peppers, onions and peas. Now I have to say ive never had proper Chow Mein from a chinese restaurant so I dont know if this is an authenic recipe. Im guessing they probably dont use soya.

      So inside the box you will find all the ingredients which are all dried so they have a best before date of July 2010. They are separated into a bag of soft noodles, a bag of sauce mix, a bag of crispy noodles and a sachet of soy sauce. There are no cooking instructions on the bags so you need to keep the box handy.

      The sauce mix is contained in a white packet much like a large version of a cupasoup packet, it has green writing on it simple saying vesta sauce mix. Even though the packet is 17cm high the mix only fills 6cm of it! Dont worry though it is plenty enough. The soft and crispy noodles are both in see through bags. The soft noodles are in a bigger bag and there are many more of them. It says the name of the noodles on the bag in back writing. If you look at the noodles you will see that the soft noodles are about half the width of the crispy ones but about the same length (4cm). If you hold the bag of crispy noodles to the light they are also a little transparent and look more yellow which the soft noodles are not and look more brown.

      For the soft noodles and sauce you can either microwave them or heat them on the stove. This will take 10 minutes in a microwave or about 25 on the stove.

      I decided to do them on the stove which is an electric stove. Firstly you empty the sauce mix into the saucepan. First you put the sauce mix into a saucepan. You need to use 525ml of water and bring to the boil. What I did was measure out that much and boil it in the kettle first so that it wouldnt take hardly any time to boil when put into a saucepan.

      You then bring this to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes white stiring. At this point it looks like a very watery soup with hard pieces of vegetables and beef/soya pieces swimming around in it.

      You then add the soft noodles and bring the mixture back to boiling again and them simmer for 15 minutes. You do not need to keep stirring the mixture all the time but as the water evaporates and rehydrates the ingredients you will need to stir in the last few minutes and every so often to stop it sticking to the bottom of the pan. If you have used the correct amount of water there will not be any excess. In fact there shouldnt be any actual "sauce" it should just be the noodles, meat and vegetable pieces, so keep cooking until all the water has gone but it looks moist. As it is cooking the soft noodles do indeed become soft and like pasta and the vegetable pieces become more colourful. There is a really distinct flavour to the meal that I remembered from in the past, it is a meaty, spicey smell but also quite salty. Actually I think salty is the main flavour to this meal.

      Now you could just serve this on a plate and eat it by itsself or you can cook the crispy noodles too.

      The crispy noodles can be cooked in a chip pan or frying pan. The easiest way is putting them in a chip basket, lowering them into the pan containing hot oil and they would all be done together. Unfortunately I dont have a chip pan!

      So i had to use the frying pan method, which is not as easy! Firstly you need to use 115g of oil ( i used olive oil to try and make it healthier) which is 1/4 of an inch in the pan. Then it needs to be heated to a level that will fry the noodle but not instantly burn it. Basically the only way to test this is do a test noodle. I let the oil heat for a few minutes on a medium heat (my dial goes up to six so i put it to three). I put a noodle in and see if it curls.

      If the temperature is correct the noodle instantly puffs up and curls around on itsself (they remind me of seahorses) This will take about 5 seconds. They will then be a lovely golden brown colour.Move them around with a spatular to make sure all of the noodle is puffed up or they will be too hard to eat.

      As soon as this happens you need to take them out of the pan as they go brown and can burn quickly. Because of all this I only put a few noodles in at a time, about 5 at the most. There are about 40-50 noodles in the pack so it takes a while but this is the best method to ensure they cook and dont burn. I heated the oil and dished out the soft noodles at the same time and then put them on a warmed plate under the stove in the grill section to keep them warm while I did the crispy noodles.

      The crispy noodles can be eaten warm or cold and I put them on a separate plate with some kitchen roll underneath to soak up the grease.

      I didnt use the soy sauce as it is very salty but you do get a large sachet 11cm long which is half full of the sauce.

      I have a large appitite and found the soft noodles and vegetables to be a decent amount to have for a meal, it filled one of my large dinner places. I think I could sum up the taste in one word. SALTY. The noodles are very floppy and slimey, but therefore easy to eat without much chewing. They also had tiny little green pieces of herbs all over them, I couldnt taste them though. Luckily the saltiness doesnt overpower the vegetable pieces and its nice to have them to add a variety of colour to the meal, there are plenty of pieces of peppers, beans and carrots that you can easily see when the meal is on the plate. You can taste the peppers and they still have their raw flavour to them, this is a nice break from the salty taste I think. In fact all the vegetables taste like they were freshly cooked, which is great as dried vegetables can be hard especially peas, but the peas were soft. It is difficult to get any flavour from the beef as it just is salty and I dont think soya pieces have much flavour anyway.

      I am glad I didnt put the soy sauce on as it is very salty as it is. I think if you dont like salty food you wouldnt like this meal, it is as simple as that. Now as I said ive never had a real chow mein and this is the only packet chow mein I know of so I dont know how it would compare but I would think maybe not as salty.

      You do get a lot of crispy noodles and as they are fried they are very greasy tasting but apart from that taste just like warm crisps I think, very crispy. I burnt a few and then they dont taste nice at all so I had to throw some away. I thought there were a little too many of them too though so I gave them to some others to eat.

      Here is the nutritional information -

      Per 100g it doesnt seem too bad. There is 137 calories and 4g of fat.

      But for the whole serving which is all of the box contains there is..

      650 calories,
      22.8g protein,
      96.9g carbohydrate (18.1g sugar),
      19g fat (4.3g saturated),
      15.7g fibre,
      2.47g sodium (which is 6.18g salt!)

      Hmm so overall it is the salt which is the big problem with this meal. I feel half of it is probably in the soysauce so excluding that will make it much healthier. The majority of the fat is unsaturated and theres a decent amount of protein and a lot of fibre in this meal so its not all bad!

      I hope I didnt make out that I didnt enjoy the meal because I did. It is nice for a change. Only occasionally though. There is a lot of saltiness from the beef and noodles and the grease from the crispy noodles.

      And I bought another box didnt I so.. I think I will have another meal of it this weekend.

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      • More +
        04.11.2008 02:08
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        If you can put up with the cold tingle then it is great

        Ive been using Original Source TeaTree and Mint shampoo recently adding it to my shampoo rotation. The first thing to notice about the shampoo is the lovely aqua green colour that you can see through the plastic bottle. It reminds me of being on holiday and looking out at the sea and seeing that rich green colour. If you hold the bottle up to the light it gets even more intense and actually reminds me of the tv program "superman" I used to watch years ago and the colour the kryptonite used to be! No radioactive particles in the shampoo though I hope!

        The Bottle itself is a bit of a strange shape. It is 19cm high and it is flat and clear plastic on the front while the sides and back are rounded and the plastic has a kind of frosted bathroom window feel to it. The cap is black and slanted like a pen nib and flips open from the front and clicks back into place easily. On the front of the bottle there is writing in black and white with the company name and stating that this is a daily refreshing shampoo for all hair types and that it provides clean, long lasting freshness.

        On the back of the bottle there is a sticker with the ingredients and directions for use but also gives you some other information. The shampoo contains 100% pure essential oils, the mint coming from fresh mint leaves. It states it will remove product build up in your hair to give you a fresh clean feeling. It also says that essential oils may not be suitable for your skin, this probably should be written in larger writing for people with sensitive skin I think.

        Apparantly you can also get a free sample at www.originalsource.co.uk.

        Looking at the ingredients it contains mint leaf oil, tea tree leaf oil, lavender oil and menthol. Everything else in the ingredient list looks very chemical based to me!

        As soon as you open the lid you are hit with the very strong smell of the shampoo, it is predominantly a very strong mint smell. The first thing I thought of was toothpaste but also its very much like olbas oil. If you think about it you can detect a little teatree oil smell which ii was familiar with as ive used the bodyshop pure teatree oil in the past. You could certainly use this shampoo to clear your sinuses! In fact I did so this weeked. I just had a big sniff and found that my blocked nose was cleared almost instantly!

        There is not much give in the plastic of the bottle so its a little difficult to get any shampoo out of it, you have to squeeze hard. This is not much of a problem as the bottle is full but i feel it will become more so when there is only a small amount left, it could be very difficult to get it out at all.

        The consistancy of the shampoo is like toothpaste or hair gel. I remember there was a clear blue gel toothpaste I used once, I dont remember what make it was but this is very much like it but green. Therefore It doesnt drip out of the bottle but comes out in big blobs. I dont mind this but its just a bit different from your average shampoo which is thinner and more slimey.

        Have you ever had a menthol sweet and then tried to have a glass of water afterwards but found your mouth was too frozen to drink it? Well if you have imagine that feeling on your scalp. This is what it feels like to use this shampoo. I was not expecting this the first time I used it and got a shock when my whole scalp felt frozen! It is almost stingy and painful but not quite. I think this is what it meant on the bottle when it said its not suitable for some skins. It could certainly be too much for some people. Its not what I wanted on a cold night I have to say but I imagine it would be much better in the summer.

        If you are thinking the frozen scalp feeling will go when you rinse off the shampoo you are wrong! The warm water makes it momentarily better but then it comes back! It took all the time I was towel drying it and then combing it through for the warmth to come back to my scalp.

        It is not all bad though, the strong smell makes it so easy to breathe when shampooing and it lathers up excellently. I only needed to rinse it once ( I was washing my hair in the sink) and my hair was literally squeaky clean.

        As for the next day, my hair was smooth and felt clean and soft. The best thing was it didnt feel greasy all day. As ive said previously my hair can become greasy the next day after washing depending on the shampoo but this one was excellent. I do wash my hair every night so I cannot say how good it would have been after this time. For my hair though this is as good as it gets regarding grease, or lack of it!

        I love the clean feeling I get from this shampoo and it is effective on grease too, the only thing that annoys me is that "freeze scalp" feeling. When I can get use to that then this shampoo will be a much more pleasurable experience.

        The 250ml bottle costs 1.97 in Tesco and Sainsburys.

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        • Nestle Aero Chunky / Chocolate / 32 Readings / 31 Ratings
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          31.10.2008 18:01
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          Lovely chocolate just wish it lasted a bit longer

          I hope its ok to do a review of the original flavour aero bar here I cant see another place for it.

          I have a 125g bar of original aero bubbly which costs 1 pound in tesco, sainsburys and all the other supermarkets at the moment. The bar is 20cm long and 9cm wide.

          The packaging consists of lots of chocolate bubbles, and the word "aero" which is also made up of chocolate bubbles. There is a big red stripe on the right end of the bar which says, "feel the bubbles melt for 1 pound". As well as this there is a helpful guide to the nutritional information per 1/4 of the bar.

          On the back of the packet it says that chocolate is tastier when it melts and bubbly chocolate melts more quickly so therefore aero is tastier chocolate.

          The wrapper can be opened at both ends like a standard chocolate wrapper and therefore cannot be sealed together again after it is opened.

          Inside the bar is split up into 8 segments and each segment is then split up into another3 segments so you can break off as much or as little as you want. Every little segment is 3cm long and each of them says aero on them.

          When you split the bar in segments you can see the tiny bubbles throughout the middle of the chocolate. These begin to melt instantly if you lick them and you can hear them crackle if you listen closely too. As it melts quickly in your hands too they can get messy if you dont eat it quick enough. The thing about it melting quickly is that when you do eat it, it disappears so fast in your mouth you dont have to chew it that much and I find that I dont feel like ive had time to truely enjoy the flavour and so I have to have another piece. Because of this and the fact that it isnt too sweet I feel that you could eat more of this chocolate that you would want to. The taste is beautiful though, very creamy and smooth, I find it tastes nearly as creamy as milka chocolate even though the uk chocolate doesnt contain as much milk and cocoa as the european brans so im not sure why that is.

          Aero chocolate contains 25% minimum cocoa solids and a 14% minimum milk solids so therefore a large majority is vegetable fat.

          Per 1/4 of the bar there is -

          174 calories,
          2.1g protein,
          18.5g sugar,
          10.1g fat, (6.5g saturated)
          0.2g fibre,
          0.1g salt.

          This works out at 30g per 100g of fat with nearly 20g of it being saturated, so this should only be a treat. I find it difficult to limit myself to just eating one segment though as I said before so I only buy it on special occasions.

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          • Mars Maltesers / Chocolate / 31 Readings / 30 Ratings
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            31.10.2008 03:11
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            Excellent chocolates

            I love malteasers. They are just a tasty way to eat chocolate without eating too much of it. That is the idea anyway!

            When I get them I get a 175g resealable bag from sainsburys. They are offically called "malteser large bags" and are 1.80. The bag measures 16cm high and 14cm wide. The packaging is red as with all malteasers packets but it also has a little hole on the top of the packet where it hangs on the hook in the supermarket. It has a white line accross the top aswell to indicate where you should tear it open and there is a little tear already on the side to get you started. It is easy to tear apart and when you have done so you will find a sticker on the back on the packet which has a picture on it to show you to fold down the package and then seal it with the sticker.

            On the front of the pack "maltesers" is spelt diagonally accross it in white letters, there are also many "floating" maltesers to show that they are "the lighter way to enjoy chocolate". Some of them have halos above them so say that its a more innocent pleasure to eat these chocolates. Around one of the maltesers with a halo is beams of light in a shape of an angel!

            I have stopped myself from eating these before I reviewed them as I wanted to count how many were in there. There are 81!

            If you didnt know better you could say they looked like animal droppings of some kind ha! Thats what they look like and best how to describe the colour of the chocolate. The chocolate is mars milk chocolate and they do have a lovely sheen to them. I estimate they are 1.5cm in diameter and when you bite into them you will see that the chocolate is simply a shell and the majority of it is yellow honeycomb with little bubbles in it. This is what makes them crunchie. The honeycomb reminds me of a dry sponge in the way it looks and in the way it crumbles into tiny pieces when you eat it. It can get into my teeth sometimes. It tastes very sweet and indeed malty as they are called. The chocolate adds to this sweetness and although its easy to keep grabbing more to eat as they are so small it is this sweetness that prevents you from eating too many. Probably a good thing. I can eat about 10-15 without it being too sweet.


            Per 100g there is

            515 calories,
            7.9g protein,
            62,8g carbohydrate (53.8g sugar),
            24.7g fat (14.5g saturated),
            1.1g fibre
            0.09g salt.

            Might have been helpul if theyd have said how much in one. Anyway it does seem to really be a the little lighter way to enjoy chocolate after all.

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            • More +
              30.10.2008 14:37
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              Heartburn Healer

              Gavison is a soothing liquid that relieves heartburn (heartburn is when the stomach acid comes back up the oesophagus and burns it). and stopping gastric acid reflux (which is what causes the heart burn) after meals. It is called a "refux suppressant". Because of these effects it can be helpful for people who have hiatus hernias too.

              The bottle I have in the house is the 300ml aniseed flavour, it also comes in peppermint I believe. It costs 5.99 in Boots. It is a glass bottle 15cm high including the cap, and 6cm wide. It is also reasonably heavy. The cap is just a latge white screw top.

              On the bottle there is a green/blue large sticker with a torso of a man with a fire in the middle of his chest to symbolise heart burn. In purple writing it says that gavison is fast soothing relief from heartburn and indigestion and that it is long lasting. On the boots website it says that its effects last for up to four hours. Also on the sticker it tells your the active ingredients and the dosage.

              The active ingredients are (per 10ml) 500mg sodium alginate, 267mg sodium hydrogen carbonate, 160mg calcium carbonate. The sodium alginate is from seaweed and it is called an alginate as it blocks stomach acid from coming back up the oesophagus by forming a floating layer on top of the stomach contents and therefore treats heartburn, gastric ruflux and the flatulence it can cause. It may not be suitable for people on a low sodium or calcium diet.

              The dosage is adults and children over 12 take 10-20ml (2-4 5ml spoonfuls) 5ml is a teaspoon I believe. You should take it after meals and a bedtime.

              Children over 6 should take 5-10ml (1-2 5ml spoonfuls)

              and it should not be taken by children under 6.

              It is suitable for use during pregnancy as it doesnt ender the bloodstream.

              You need to shake the bottle well before you use it. The liquid itsself is pink and very thick and gloopy. The aniseed taste is very strong and it also tastes quite salty.

              My mother says it is excellent for stopping gastic reflux and heartburn which she sometimes gets if she bends over after a meal. She tells me that it works in 5 minutes for her. Also she uses it for indigestion and if she feels full after a meal and says it works excellently for this too. I have used it for this too and to be honest I didnt find it that effective and I didnt like the taste. I think I will stick to my peppermint tea for indigestion and leave it to just be used for heartburn.

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              • More +
                30.10.2008 02:53
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                Get yours today!

                Max Factor Aqua Lash mascara is something I remember buying for as long is ive used makeup, so its definately been around nearly 15 years now. Max factor have had many new ranges out since and this mascara still stays available so I can presume it is a firm favorite.

                The packaging has remained the same throughout the years, it comes in a 9ml navy tube with gold writing stating the name of the product and a navy screw top with "mf" in gold writing on it. The tube and its cap altogether measure 12cms. On the tube all it says is that its a waterproof mascara and fragrance free. The mascara come in black and brown/black, I have the black.

                The mascara brush is 2.5cms long and is densely packed with soft bristles, the maxfactor website calls it a "plush brush". When you remove the brush from the tube the mascara does not clump on the brush at all. Also of importance on their website it says the formular is suitable for contat lense wearers.

                When you apply the first coat on your lashes instantly you see the the brush separates, enlongates and colours your lashes superbly. The definition this mascara provides is excellent, there is no clumping at all. The mascara also curls your lashes and because of the fantastic seperation of the lashes they look volumised too. It dried almost instanly so there is no smudging either.There is no mention on the tube that the mascara does all this either, there really should be! On adding a second coat the effects are doubled, and still no clumps!!

                This mascara has worked excellently for me for years in rainy conditions but I thought for the purpose of this review id put my face in a sink full of water :) The result, dripping face but perfect lashes!!

                Couple of little points though, you will need a good makeup remover to get rid of the mascara, it just doesnt like to shift, also if you get some on your eyes when applying its not that easy to remove it but a little eye makeup remover on a cotton bud should do the job.

                The mascara costs 6.99 in boots which I think is fine for a mascara this great. Actually it may be the only mascara you ever need!

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              • More +
                29.10.2008 15:35
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                Ok for oily skins but i need more from a moisuriser

                Like the previous reviewer I also have acne prone skin and have suffered and still do to an extent with bad skin despite using a vitamin A cream from the doctors. So yes I need to use a moisuriser that doesnt make my skin any worse my making it greasier and then giving me more spots.

                The preference initially was to have a medicated moisuriser but of course these make my skin very irritated, and there is a moisturiser from synergie that made my spots worse. Actually the vitamin a cream makes my skin very sensitive to anything else now that is made for spot prone skin so I pretty much need to give that whole range a wide birth.

                So im left with using basic oil free moisurisers. I have used this one from nivea visage for many years. It costs 4.09 in superdrug. Im not completely satisfied with it but I feel the fact that it doesnt irritate my skin or make my spots any worse outweights anything else.

                Im afraid ive binned the cardboard box that the moisuriser comes in, it is the same as the one in the picture about. Ive had a look at the nivea website to see if theres some extra information needed. Well the product is marketed for normal and combination skin because it apparantly regulates oil aswell as providing light moisure where needed. The moisure comes from witch hazel and allantoin and mattispheres absorb the oil. Importantly it is also non pore blocking

                Now on the box I remember it did say it contained UVA/UVB sunscreens and vitamin E but it does not say this on the bottle. It doesnt say what factor the sunscreens are so basically what I do is just presume it doesnt contain any and use a different moisuriser (the olay one i reviewed a while ago) when I go out in the sun. Sun protection is just as imporant to be as spot prevention.

                The bottle itsself 100ml, white with a blue screw top lid. 12cm high and 6cm wide. On the front there is a sticker with the niveavisage logo and where it says "oil free moisturising fluid there is a lot of bubbless. As i said there isnt and information about ingredients on the back of the bottle it just says how it absorbs instantly and when to use it. Strangly it says only to use it in the morning. Is there an oil free night cream too? I dont know.

                The fluid is just that, a very light white fluid, very watery. I cant detect much of a fragrance with it. You simply squeeze the bottle and the fluid comes out easily. It does absorb instantly too and leaves skin very smooth and soft. As long as its not dry or irritated. For example when i use a facial scrub or sometimes when im out of the shower my skin feels "tight" this doesnt provide enough moisture for me. I have to use something creamier then.

                I dont think that this moisuriser is actually making my skin any less oily, I think its doing that by itsself as I get older.

                My conclusion is that I do like this moisuriser up to a point, I just wish it could provide some more moisture! I think my skin is just getting too dry to keep using it by itsself.

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              • Timotei Shampoo / Hair Care / 19 Readings / 18 Ratings
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                29.10.2008 03:23
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                Overall these shampoos work well and are a good price

                I have two timotei shampoos in the house right now, I think I must have got them on a two for the price of one offer in sainsburys weeks ago.

                The two varieties I have are a softening shampoo for normal hair with oat milk and peach and a strength and shine shampoo also for normal hair with fresh herb and kiwi. In the picture at the top here they are the one on the left and the one on the right.

                The reason I decided to go for these two was that even though I have quite greasy hair I find that shampoos especially designed for it always disappoint me so what I do is just go with the ones for normal hair or for frequent washing as I wash my hair every night.

                It is interesting how timotei have two shampoos for normal hair though and yes there is a difference between them! Now I remember when timotei only had their one classic shampoo, I can remember the bottle now. It was white and short and square with a green lid. I used to use it in the bath when I was little. I know shampooing in the bath, I cant imagine I used the bath water but thats what I remember. The shampoo itsself was green too and it had this very distinctive smell to it. I wish I could remember what it smelt like, I just remember it was really nice.

                Anyway back to the shampoos. The reason I got the "strength and shine" one was because I thought it might be like the original version. On both of the shampoos I have, the bottles have a green hue and the writing on the back of the bottle is in green too but this one also has a green lid and a green round picture of a leaf with beads of water on the leaf with a little round picture of a kiwi fruit to the top left of the other picture. Also where it says "normal hair" at the bottom of the bottle it has a green background behind it. Aswell as this it says "strength and shine" in green above the pictures. The bottle itsself is 21cm high and 9cm wide at the bottom, it is a rectangular shape that slants inwards at the top towards the cap and it contains 400ml of shampoo, so not one for taking on holiday but it is a great large size especially good if you use it every day. The cap is a simple flip top and you just turn the bottle upside down and squeeze to get the shampoo out.

                The shampoo itsself is clear and green and has a lovely fresh fragance althought not really like herbs or kiwi. Actually it reminds me of other products that said they were cucumber flavoured (not that cucumber really has a smell, I hope you know what I mean). It latheres excellently, as ive said previously I do tend to use a bit more than I should as I have long hair. There was a LOT of lather with this.

                The back of bottle states that this shampoo will strengthen hair from root to tip and give it a great shine. All in all I think it is ok. I dont exactly know how to tell if my hair is stronger because as I wash it every day i rotate different shampoos but it does shine well. The one thing i basically buy shampoos for though is to get rid of my greasy hair, and by the end of the next day after ive used this shampoo my hair is feeling like it needs a wash again. I just want a shampoo to be a bit better than this. For people with less greasy hair im sure it would be better.

                On to the next shampoo, the softening one with oat milk and peach. I like this one much more. The bottle is the same size and shape but the difference is that the cap is a peach colour as as the place where it says its for normal hair. The big round picture on the front is of some wheat and the little picture is of a peach split into half. On the back of the bottle it says it is a mild formulation to gently clease to leave hair soft.

                I love the smell of this one it is like peach yoghurt and it is a more creamy formulation that is a peachy colour too. It lathers just as well as the other one but the main reason I like it more is how it makes my hair feel. I can actually smell the peach on my hair the next day and my hair really does feel so soft and it remains like this and not greasy much longer than the other shampoo. I definately will buy this one again but I wouldnt buy the herb and kiwi one.

                I found it quite amusing that on both bottles on the back it said in three languages "DO NOT EAT". Never seen that before! On both of the bottles there also is a sticker that says timotei supports the woodland trust charity, i cant say i know what that is though.

                The shampoos are 2.39 in sainsburys now, but cheaper at 1.78 in asda which is pretty good for a bottle of this size.

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              • Beecham's Germolene / Pain Relief / 15 Readings / 15 Ratings
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                28.10.2008 15:38
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                Excellent antiseptic cream

                Germolene is a antiseptic cream that I remember from growing up, there was always a tube in the bathroom cabinet for any times id fall over and graze my knee.

                Germolene comes in a long carboard box which has navy background expect for the right corner which is pink. The name is in White letters and it says on the box that it helps prevent infection, numbs pain and helps healing.

                The tube inside has changed from when I last used it. It used to be a metal tube and much longer than it is now. Now it is a 30g plastic tube that is 10cm not including the cap, which is a screwtop and when it is unscrewed there is a little piece of metal you need to pull of to reveal the nozzle. The tube is the same colour as the box, navy with white writing. Basically if you have a tube of savlon its pretty much the same just a darker colour blue.

                The active ingredients are phenol (carbolyic acid) and chlorhexidine digluconate. These are antiseptics and both prevent any infection getting into any cut etc you have. Also there is a local anaesthetic to numb pain and stop any itching, I dont know which ingredient this is im afraid.

                I think it is the phenol that gives it a "hospital smell", always makes me feel like it must work if it smells like that. The cream is light pink and absorbs into the skin easily like a moisuriser, it is not sticky or greasy at all but it is the smell of it that makes me need to wash my hands afterwards.

                On the tube it says you can use it for cuts, grazes, burns, blisters, stings, insect bites and spots. Also it can be used on chapped rough skin It also says you should wash the infected area before you apply it

                Ive used it on many cuts and scrapes over the years and found it excellent for protecting and healing the area. I used to try it on spots many years ago but gave up on this as it didnt seem to do anything for them at all.

                Id never tried it on my hands before but they are looking a bit rough these days I dont know if its the weather or doing the dishes a lot but they have a lot of flakey skin on them. So I used a little blob of germolene today on them and it absorbed very well with no greasy feeling, making my hands feel softer but not really look any better and of course im left with the hospital smell over them. Its not bad but i think ill stick with neutrogena.

                A tube will cost 1.98 in tesco. It is an essential antiseptic cream to have in the medicine cupboard I think for any cuts you might get, especially if you have children around I would think.

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              • More +
                28.10.2008 03:27
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                Glad it didnt work or i would be addicted

                Before I came to review this product I had a look at the other reviews here and I am shocked to see how so many people have become addicted to this! I had no idea that this could happen which such an seemingly innocuous product.

                As a person who suffers from a dust allergy I find myself with a blocked nose at some point every day. I actually think my body has adapted to less oxygen now. OK maybe not but I am definately used to constantly breathing through my mouth, its just so damn difficult to eat at the same time!!

                So I an effort to try and breath more easily I have tried vicks sinus soother nasal spray. Now usually anything I put in my nose ends up being sneezed out and blown out. But still anything is worth a go to get the precious oxygen.

                For you to recognise it, the box is 11.5cm high and has a nice silver sheen to it, on the front there is a half a womans face and a picture of a nozzle and the spray emanating upwards from it.
                The vicks logo at the top is a inverted green triangle with the word in white and then the words "sinus soother" in red. You can buy it from chemists and supermarkets and it is around 4 pounds a bottle.

                It is recommended for relieing a blocked nose when you have a cold, rhinitis or sinitiss. Adults and children over 10 should use 1-2 sprays every 3-4 hours and children over 6 just one spray.

                The active ingredient is oxymetazoline which is a decongestant and constricsts the blood vessles of the nose and sinuses to help you breathe.

                Inside the box there is a 15ml glass bottle with a big white nozzle to put in your nose. When you put it into your nose you press down on the nozzle and it sprays upwards. It smells very minty and like i thought it would i made me feel like I was going to sneeze.

                Unfortunately, or fortunately maybe after reading the other reviews, the spray didnt make it any easier to breath at all. Therefore i didnt feel any need to try it again.

                Ive still got the leafet for the spray which im having a read of now to see what it says about any addiction.

                It does say if you have coronary disease you should not use and to inform your doctor if you have high blood pressure or diabetes, this is worrying, its just a nose spray isnt it? Obviously not!

                The ingredient benzalkonium chloride which is used as a preservative in the spray can cause swelling of the nasal mucosa if you use it for too long. Hmm a decongestant that causes your nose to block. It also states that you shouldnt use it for longer than 7 days or you will be susceptible to this.

                In a lot of ways I am glad it doesnt work for me as im sure I would want to keep using it to be able to breathe more easily. All I can say is be careful when using this product.

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                • Bonjela / Pain Relief / 17 Readings / 17 Ratings
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                  27.10.2008 18:57
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                  Great for ulcers

                  When I was younger I used to occasionally have a small mouth ulcer caused by biting the inside of my mouth or from eating crisps that tore some skin inside. They were just a small red raised bump, not too painful and used to go in a day or two. When I told my mother I had one shed always give me some bonjela to put on it, it would not sting and would heal pretty quickly.

                  That was the limit of my experience of them until a few years ago when I had a much worse time of them. I remember feeling pain in my upper gums and being able to feel two large bumps with my tongue. It hurt to even do that. It was very difficult to see them and they were quite far back in my mouth and you needed bright sunlight to find where they were. When I did see them they looked big and white and I wondered what I had done to have them there.

                  It was very painful for a while to eat or even move my mouth over them. I quickly got myself a tube of bonjela to try and heal them. As they were more severe it took about a week for them to die down. I remember the bonjela stung very much but did provide a relief from the pain for a few hours at a time. It really is a very helpful product.

                  Bonjela comes in a long, thin blue carboard box which says bonjela in white on the front. Also in white on the front and it says it can be used for infants teething and to relieve the pain of cold sores and dental sores. Inside the box is a blue metal tube 9cm long and 15ml. The cap itsself is white and you simply twist it to open. You then need to break a little metal seal of the entrance to the tube. You need to remove a plastic ring under the cap and then put the cap back on and it will break the seal. If you squeeze the tube carefully the clear gel will appear, it smells and of aniseed not my favorite of things but I bear with it.

                  You are advised on the tube to use half an inch of the gel on your little finger to the area not more than every 3 hours. Children are adviced to use half the amount of gel.

                  The active ingredients are choline salicylate (which is similar to asprin and reduces the inflammation and pain) and cetalkonium chloride which is an antiseptic to stop bacteria from infecting the ulcer.

                  Getting it on the ulcer is the main difficulty especially when its in an awkward place in your mouth that you cannot see. If you accidently touch another part of your mouth the gel warms up and slips off your finger. I just spit it out and try again with another amount on my finger until I get the right place. It will sting when you get to the right area so at least u know when it is on there!

                  The time it takes to heal as I said above depends how bad it is. My nasty one took a week but using the bonjela really helped with the pain and tenderness and therefore is an essential gel for these oral irritations!

                  The tube costs 2.48 in Tesco and Sainsburys at the moment but it should be availible in all chemists too.

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                  • More +
                    27.10.2008 00:28
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                    Another essential medicine

                    Occasionally I suffer from very painful trapped wind. Its hard to know how or why it occurs or I would try and take measures to prevent it. Usually I notice it when I change position and I get a shooting sharp pain in my lower stomach and into my groin. It varies in intensity but sometimes it is very difficult to move around with the pain, and I if you try to strain to try and pass the wind it becomes so much more painful. If it becomes very painful it is even difficult to pass water no matter how much you need to. Ive had to press my stomach to be able to urinate without as otherwise the pain was unbearable, thats only happened once thankfully. I do apologise if that was too much information.

                    It is difficult to know what to do to try and help it, I have tried a lot of things like peppermint tea, this is ok sometimes but better for helping with wind that is higher up the digestive system. Sometimes all you can do is wait and hope it disperses natually.

                    I remember one particularly bad time just before I discovered this product. I was in the restuarant of the supposedly best hotel in town having lunch and they took so long to bring it and when it did finally come it was so little food that I had really bad indigestion all day afterwards.

                    The thing was though this indigestion didnt go. Every subseqent meal I ate gave me more indigestion, and my stomach became bigger and bigger so much so that I couldnt sit down to eat as i couldnt bend forward. I would wake up the next day still with the indigestion of the day before. I was supposed to be going on holiday the next week and couldnt go like this!

                    Luckily I went to the chemist and got windeze. I really hadnt heard of it before but the pharmasist was very helpful and gave me the correct product. I had so much trapped wind that it took a couple of days and a whole packet of windeze to get rid of all the trapped wind. I felt that each tablet was making a significant different to how uncomfortable I was feeling and was reducing the pain and size of my stomach. I should point out that when taking these tablets I did not experience any increased flatulence. The wind disappeared somehow but honestly I dont know how it did! The important thing is that they worked.

                    Every capsule of windeze contains 125mg of simeticone, (other products may call it activated dimeticone, it is basically the same thing). Simeticone is an anti foaming agent, it makes all the small bubbles of trapped gas in the digestive system form into a larger bubble so it can be expelled.

                    The packet I have is white with "wind-eze" in red on the front, the back of the packet is blue with advice on how many to take and some warnings for who shouldnt use them, these are then expanded on in the enclosed leaflet.

                    In my packet there are 20 capsules, arranged into 2 blister packs of 10, the 10 are arranged in two patterns of 5 like how they look on a dice. The tablet is actually a oval shaped white gel capsule which looks like a tiny rugby ball. They are 1cm wide and therefore easy to swallow with water.

                    The doseage is 3-4 capsules a day after meals and before bedtime until the symptoms ease. As I said it took a couple of days for that large amount of trapped wind to go completely but more recently when I have felt that lower abdominal pain due to the wind I have taken a capsule straight away and have not needed another one.

                    On the leaflet it says that simeticone is safe to take when pregnant or breast feeding as it doesnt get absorbed into the bloodstream. Also it says not to exceed the dosage as the capsules contain glycerol which is harmful if you take too many.

                    Having had a look around the net it seems a pack of 20 will cost from 3-4 pounds. A small price to pay for a whole lot of relief.

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                  • Maryland Cookies / Snacks / 17 Readings / 16 Ratings
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                    26.10.2008 15:59
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                    Nice lower fat alturnative

                    Its nice to find one of your favorite not so good for you food that has a low fat option, it makes you feel better about eating them and I feel like I can eat more of them but the thing is
                    so often when you have a reduced fat version you end up with a reduced amount of the product or the taste is reduced.

                    So Maryland cookies have a 25% less fat version of their chocolate chip cookies, and I am pleased to say I had to eat many of them in order to write this review. I just wish I had a packet of their original cookies to compare them with. Still I am just going to give my opinion of these biscuits for what they are.

                    The cookies come in a red shiny wrapper, with Maryland written in yellow, and there is a picture of the chocolate chip cookie on the right side which is looking very tasty!

                    You tear the wrapper apart at the end like most biscuit packets, helpfully i didnt completely tear it. What i usually do is throw the wrapper away and put any uneaten biscuits in the biscuit jar so any teared wrappers arnt a problem.

                    On opening suddenly the smell of chocolate is apparant, and I couldnt wait to get started munching. There are 13 biscuits in the packet (hopefully not unlucky for me), they are 5cm accross which isnt the biggest biscuit but they look very tasty. They are golden brown and crumbly when you hold them, not to the amount that they break apart but some crumbs do fall off in your hands. The chocolate chips are spread over the whole biscuit I would say on average there are 10 chips on each biscuit.

                    As for the taste, they are lovely and sweet and you are able to taste each individual chocolate chip, which is lovely and as good as cadburys chocolate the biscuit is crunchie and crumbly and so moreish! You cannot just eat one of these. I have eaten half the packet writing this review and I dont feel like ive eaten too much sugar or that they are too sickly.

                    I sometimes find lower fat products dont taste as nice but i couldnt tell at all that there was any less fat in these biscuits that any others which makes me wonder why dont all biscuits contain this reduced amount of fat.


                    Per cookie there is

                    59 calories,
                    0.6g protein,
                    7.9g carbohydrate,
                    1.9g fat

                    Out of 100g there is 18g of fat.


                    They are 78p a packet in tesco and sainbsburys which seems a bit expensive for 13 biscuits of this size, I dont know maybe you are paying for the brand. Not that they arnt worth it, they are lovely!

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                  • Bourjois Effet Lumiere / Make Up / 19 Readings / 19 Ratings
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                    26.10.2008 00:31
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                    These eyeshadows are excellent

                    Effect Lumiere, or light effect is the name of Bourjois eyeshadow trios. They come in three "themes" "les argents" which are greys and white, "les bruns" whch are shades of brown and "les narurels".

                    I have the "les naturels" which consists of a creamy/gold, light brown and dark brown eyeshadows.
                    It comes in a brown/pink round plastic box which is 5.5cm at it widest point. The writing which is all in french on the front of the box is golden. There is a semicircular window through which you can see the three eyeshadows which are in an arch shape and go from lightest to darkest, as they are in this shape there is more of the lightest and darkest shade than the light brown shade.

                    The box opens by pressing a gold button on the outside of the box and then flips open from the front, it then shuts by clicking it back into place. Inside the box underneath the eyeshadows there is a double ended applicator which is also arched shaped. This makes it a little more difficult to use that a straight applicator

                    On the back of the box there is advice to how to use the shadows, it says to apply the lightest shade to eye lid and brown bone, the middle shade to the eye lid and the darkest shade near the eye lashes.

                    A difference between this and the no7 eyeshadow trio that I reviewed is that the lightest colour is very shimmery. You can put the lightest colour on by itsself all over your eyes up to the brows to create a brightened iridescent effect to your eyes. It is very natural looking so seems like you are not wearing it but your eyes naturally have a sheen to them! I also sometimes just use it on my brow bone to highlight the area.

                    The light brown looks a bit orange when applied over the gold but as the colours are very subtle it does not look obvious. I either use the dark brown in an arch on my eye socket to make my eyes appear more open or completey over my whole eyelid, I really like this colour is it is similar to my eye colour.

                    The eyeshadows are very smooth to apply and do not irritate my eyes at all. If you touch the shadow after you apply it it feels so silky. Dont be afaid to do this as they will not smudge. Ive found they last for hours and are very easy to remove with makeup remover, or just water.

                    They cost 6.50 in Boots which is another plus over the no7 eyeshadows, 3 pounds cheaper! I think they are just as good as them too.

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                    • Zirtek / Health Treatment / 22 Readings / 21 Ratings
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                      25.10.2008 18:18
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                      So far so good

                      There are so many antihistamine drugs available I can never remember the names of all of them. They all say they will cure your allergies but it is really annoying to have to go through buying all the different brands in search of one that really works. I think that everyones allergies are different too and so what works for one person may not for another. Im still on the lookout for something that will cure my dust allergy completely. Most antihistamines are either ok for a few days then I get tolerant to them or they just arnt that effective. I just get so miserable not being able to breathe, I dont think people without allergies understand how it affects your quality of life, if you cannot breathe you dont have any energy so you dont want to do anything.

                      I am now giving Zirtec tablets a go, I got them in saisburys pharmacy last week for 2.70.

                      The box is green and if you look closely the green is made up of a large plant with a lot of leaves. The Zirtec name is in large white letters on the front of the box. Also on the right side there are little round pictures of a bee on a flower, a woman blowing her nose, a cat and someone scratching their arm. This is to indicate that Zirtec works against pollen, dust, mould and pet allergies as well as itchy skin rashes. At the bottom of the box there is a yellow and then a puple stripe saying they are one a day and for relief of allergies.

                      In the box there are 7 tablets of which you take one a day. They are inside the box on a blister pack. Like all the antihistamines they are very small, 1cm long, but there is a ridge in the middle if you want to split them in half. They are very easy to swallow but occasionally stick to my mouth with doesnt taste pleasant at all.

                      On taking one at 1pm today when my nose was runny and I was sneezing a lot, at 1.30 my nose wasnt running but was still blocked and by 2pm it was clear. It has been clear ever since too. I dont feel drowsey at all either. So far so good!

                      Zirtec contains cetiriine hydrochloride and is only for adults and children over 12 years. It says that most people if they dont exceed the dose will not feel drowsy but not to drive if it happens, and you should not drink too much alcohol when using the tablets either. You should not use this if you are breastfeeding either.

                      When I was in the supermarket I looked for some own brand antihistamines but they didnt contain the same drug. I already reviewed the ones which loratadine which were "ok" but I was hoping they would have had some with cetirizine in them for me to try as you usually get more tablets and they are cheaper. I couldnt find any though.

                      I wish they came in bigger packs than 7. Allergies dont go after a week im afraid. Also it is expensive for 7 tablets, they do seem to work though so it seems its an expense worth paying.

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