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I am a big fan of Hollister.
I was first introduced to the store in the Summer of 2009. I entered the dark, gloomy 'pier side' shop, and my first impressions were not good. I couldn't see the clothing, the members of staff were wearing sandals, and I wasn't sure I'd ever find my way out of the shop.
However, after purchasing and wearing some of the clothing, I have been won over, and it is actually my first stop off when I go to a shopping centre. Although I'm still not crazy on the design of the shop due to how dark it is, I can understand what Hollister are going for, because it really does create a refreshing shopping atmosphere and something a little different to the generic high street stores of today.
The clothing is excellent. I generally purchase T-shirts for under £20, and they fit very well. I go for a small size, and these fit really nicely- they feel made-to-fit rather than being cheaply made (even though they will be). The hoodies and shirts, despite being very expensive, are also very nice, and I have become a big fan of these.
As mentioned, the price is quite high, however this is expected for any brand name these days. £40 for a hoody is a lot, but like I say, I didn't expect to pay any less.
Overall, a refreshing change from standard high street shops.
For the price of around £10+, you can't really go wrong with this fantastic little webcam. I only wanted a cheap webcam for chatting with family and friends over Skype, therefore for the low cost that I paid for this, I wasn't expecting much at all. As long as I was visible, I was happy.
Fortunately, for what I did pay, I was very happy. This webcam has a resolution of 640x480, therefore the quality is actually quite good. When installing the webcam, there are a number of programs on offer from Logitech, giving you the ability to record videos etc. It is possible to alter the contrast/brightness settings of this webcam, therefore allowing you to adapt it to your monitor. My monitor is particularly bright, therefore the webcam was fine the way it was installed.
Aside from the video quality being good, there is also an in-built webcam. The sound quality from this is actually quite good, as I wasn't expecting it to be. This means that I can chat online without the need for a separate microphone, making life a whole lot easier.
The webcam is attached using a standard USB 2.0 socket, and I believe it is compatible with most modern operating systems. I have Windows 7 and it installed with no problems.
Overall, this is a great webcam for a very low price!
If you have a PC or laptop without an SD card reader, then you do not need to worry, because this little device will cover your back.
This card reader fits into a standard USB 2.0 socket, meaning it is compatible with all modern computers. Because the device is only around 2 inches long, it can be transported anywhere with great ease, meaning it is never a burden. The device has one SD card slot, however it is compatible with SDHC cards too, therefore if you are transferring high quality photographs or high definition video, then the card reader will handle the transfer.
I picked this up for around £3, and for the price you cannot go wrong. Integral is a good brand, and so far I have had no problems with it. I assumed that it wouldn't last too long with it being so cheap, however I have yet to experience any technical difficulties. The card reader is simply inserted into the USB slot, then once the SD card is placed within the reader, you are good to go. The system should autoplay the card, and allow you to transfer information from it with great ease.
On the whole, a great, cheap little product.
As far as a review goes, there isn't a great deal that can be said about an air freshener. However, if you're looking to pick up something cheap that does the trick, then you can't go wrong with this Glade product.
I went down to Morrisons in search of a cheap, plug-in air freshener that would fill my room with a nice fragrance. I browsed through the different brands, including Airwick and Febreeze, however the Glade product seemed the best value. Although it was a slightly more expensive product (around £5 as opposed to £4.50), the refills were cheaper and available in a much broader range of fragrances. The actual plug-in device is also a lot smaller than the other brands, meaning it takes up less space and it less noticeable to a guest etc.
The product is easy to set up; simply insert the fragrance capsule into the device, turn it on at the plug and away you go. The product has 5 different settings (1-5), allowing you to set the level of fragrance being released. I have kept mine on the lowest setting so far, and the room still has a noticeably different smell.
Overall, this is a nice little product for a low price, that is easy to set up.
I was recently trying to find a dress for a friend, and as a male I naturally found this a difficult task! I looked on most of the high street shop websites, and didn't find anything that really stood out to me. Soon enough I was directed to ASOS by a friend, so I checked it out.
What I found was a great website with a huge selection of clothes. I was able to customise the search options (which isn't the case on all of the previous websites I tried) so that I could view all the dresses available in the size I wanted. I was pleased to find a size 6/XS option, as this suits the person I was buying for perfectly.
So using the search options I narrowed down to a smaller (albeit still large) selection of dresses, and I was able to pick from those. There is even a video option to see the dress being modelled on a cat walk, which is a lot more helpful than the pictures available. It really allows you to see how the dress will look on a person, rather than just a photograph showing you the dress laid flat.
Not only were the dress prices good, but the delivery options were too, with next-day delivery only being around £5. This was ideal, and their postal service stuck to their word and it arrived the day after. I purchased a few dresses from the website, with the intention of picking the best. One of them was unsuitable, so I sent it back. The process couldn't have been easier; they even provide a returns form in the parcel that the dress is delivered in, so it's simply a matter of re-packaging it and sending it off!
Overall, very pleased with this website, and I'll probably start to use it for buying my own clothes, cause it does men's as well as women's!
For many years I have been a regular coffee drinker. When I wake up in the morning I have one thing on my mind, "Must. Make. Coffee.". I've had countless amounts of coffee makers, from the bog standard to the ridiculously expensive. Most have done the job well, with the exception of a few, but at last I have found my perfect coffee machine. Okay, it does have some flaws, but this machine makes the best coffee out of all the others I have owned- and that's what's important isn't it?
Being a Nespresso coffee maker, it uses Nespresso capsules rather than coffee beans. If you're a regular coffee drinker, you'll know how much of a relief this can be. This machine is so simple: choose the coffee capsule, place it into the machine, then press the button.
You can choose between espresso, cappuccino, latte and lungo, so it offers as many coffee types as most high-end coffee makers. There are 16 varieties of capsules provided by Nespresso, so you will never get bored of the taste of the coffee. I personally prefer the Capriccio, which is an average-strength, rich tasting shot. If you're looking for something stronger (Ristretto), or something weaker (Cosi), then the options are available for you! The capsules cost around 27p from the Nespresso website, so you really cannot complain about the price.
The milk-foam that this machine produces is fantastic. As I've mentioned, I've owned (and worked with) many coffee machines in the past, and this certainly gets the milk right. As with most professional coffee makers, milk foam is used to get the cappuccinos and lattes spot on. It is basically steamed milk, but it tastes fantastic and perfects the texture of the coffee. My personal favourite is the latte, so the milk is important- and it always delivers. The milk is easy to pour into the machine, as you simply put it in a detachable carton that slots onto the side of the machine. This ensures that you can keep the milk fresh, and to top this off you can simply machine wash the container after each time you use it!
On top of the fantastic milk system, this machine also succeeds when it comes to design. At 26cm high, and 20.5cm wide, this sleek-looking coffee machine will look perfectly in place in any kitchen, and in fact add a touch of class to it's surroundings. I own the black and white coloured machine, and it looks beautiful in my kitchen. I always offer people a coffee when they come to my house, and everyone comments on the quality of it.
The machine has a standard drip-trip that is very easy to detach to empty, and a 1.2 litre water reservoir, meaning you only need to fill it up after a few coffees. The machine has a water-level indicator too to make your job even easier. There is a clean button on the machine, which empties and cleans the pipes, so this is especially useful for those not wanting the hassle of disassembling a coffee machine to clean up!
My one issue with the machine would be it's price. This is a top-end, high quality coffee machine, and to be honest does justify the price level. However, it isn't for those just wanting a simple method of making a coffee on a morning. It should be considered a 'luxury' coffee maker, because many wont want to break the bank for the sake of an easy coffee.
Nonetheless, this machine really is fantastic. The wide variety of quality coffees means that you'll get the most out of this maker, and you'll rarely be disappointed with the outcome. There are different strength coffees for those wanting something stronger or weaker, and the milk foam really adds that final touch to a beautiful latte or cappuccino. To top it off, the machine is easily refilled and cleaned, so there is no messing around taking it apart!
Overall, this is a great product that coffee-lovers should seriously consider.
As a semi-professional chef, one thing I hate doing is chopping onions. Not only do they irritate the eyes, but they can be an absolute nuisance to chop accurately. We do not own these onion choppers at the restaurant I work at, however I am very happy to use it for home cooking!
This product chops onions perfectly well. Some onion choppers out there (especially the cheap ones) feel weak and it will feel like a struggle to get through the onion. This shouldn't be the case, and thankfully this onion chopper delivers well. It feels sturdy and well built, and the stainless steel blades never fail to cut through the whole onion.
Another problem I often have with chopping tools is the mess that they can cause. It is often easier to chop the vegetable/fruit yourself, reduce mess and save a lot of time. This product however has a box to collect the chopped pieces and the mess, so you wont have pieces of veg scattered around the worktop.
On top of these fantastic features, the chopper is also machine washable! This is a great bonus, because many of these tools aren't, and can be a huge hassle to clean due to the small cracks etc.
Not only will this chopper chop onions, but it will also do most other vegetables and fruit. For around £17, you can not go wrong with this! You will be buying a fine chopper for many different types of food, creating excellent, finely diced pieces. Throw it in the washing machine after and job done!
I wouldn't look elsewhere for a food chopper. Pay a low amount for a fantastic product.
When I first bought this flash drive, I thought "How long is this actually going to last?". The actual USB input is protected only by a thin layer of rubber, so I thought that it would easily be damaged by force or water. Being made out of rubber, the whole device isn't particularly sturdy, so again I thought this would be a downfall for this product.
But so far, none of my presumptions have been proven.
For the price (I paid £10), this flash drive is fantastic. 2GB of memory was quite generous for the price when I bought it, so this was one of the main selling points for me. The device is very portable, and will attach easily onto a keyring, which is a great bonus for me. The single-layer USB input may give you doubts about how well it will hold in a USB socket, however you shouldn't worry about it. It holds fine, and works pefectly well.
My flash drive has never been damaged either. I would advise keeping it away from water, as I would imagine that it will enter the rubber casing and inevitably damage it. But this will be the case for any flash drive, so this isn't a downside of this product.
Overall, I would recommend this flash drive. It runs fast and is definitely the most portable USB stick I have ever owned.
As an avid hiking and potholer, I was happy to know that I could pick up this fantastic little head torch for under £40.
I bought this around a year ago when my other head-torch (and a lot more expensive, I may add), was damaged and made unusable on a hike. I decided that I'd purchase a fairly cheap torch to keep me going for a while, and I'm still using the torch to this day. The torch is 140 lumens, so this is very bright, especially when using in caves and other dark spaces. The torch is a single LED, however it is plenty bright enough to see clearly in dark open spaces. The beam can supposedly range to 528ft, however I believe that this is a slight exaggeration. Nonetheless, the light covers enough distance to be able to see clearly.
The head-strap is very customisable, and can be adjusted to fit your head size perfectly. If you are a fan of hiking like me, then you will know that comfort is vital for the duration of the trek.
The torch has some other nice little features. The light has a dimmer switch, so it can alternate between high and low intensity. This is useful when wanting to save some power in the 3 AAA batteries. The torch can also be swivelled slightly, which allows you to focus the direction of the light. This is a useful tool, however you'll probably find that turning your head is far easier.
Overall, this head torch is great. Useful for hikers, cavers or anything else you may do out in the dark.
If you're looking for a cheap, good quality sandwich toaster, then this is certainly an option to consider.
This toaster does its job quite well. It heats up in seconds (not quicker than expensive toasters, however), but there is little waiting time, certainly not long enough to slow down the sandwich making process. The toaster could be considered ever-so-slightly too small for regular sliced bread, but once the sandwich is toasting this doesn't become much of a problem. If anything, it seals it together better. The hot-plate is smooth which makes removing the sandwich particularly easy, and also easier to clean!
Sandwiches are cooked relatively fast in this toaster. I rarely have to wait more than a few minutes for the sandwich to be cooked, but it does often depend on how much you put in the sandwich. The toaster will allow you to make fairly full sandwiches, however if you go overboard on the fillings then it may cause difficulty in closing the lid.
I do have one main problem with this toaster though. The lid doesn't completely shut (there is space between the top and bottom) therefore any filling escaping from the sandwich will also escape from the machine- usually, right onto the worktop. This is a major nuisance when wanting to make a quick snack without having to worry about cleaning, because if anything it adds to the cleaning job. I regularly find myself put off making a toastie because of the leaking from the machine. Cheese often gets into the holes on the bottom and behind the machine, which makes it even harder to remove.
Overall though, you can't expect much better for the price. Useful for making quick toasties, but unfortunately the cleaning up after is a hassle!
There isn't a great deal that can be said about this product, but what can be said is that it is really great. This case can be picked up for next to nothing if you look in the right places (I bought mine for 99p), however the typical retail price varies between £5-10.
For what the product is, I would say that £10 is a lot. Ultimately, this case is made for protection, and there are cheaper alternatives out there. Many are influenced by the Blackberry badge on the side, and assume that it is better and more appropriate than others. On some level, I would agree with this. The case is designed and shaped perfectly to fit a Blackberry (I own the 8520), so it really does feel as though your phone is held firmly and protected.
The material is also thick, and so the phone is very safe from damage. I never worry about my phone getting scratched or dented in my pocket, because this case really does protect it.
What really sets this case aside from others though is that it has a magnetic strip inside that sleeps the phone when it is placed in it. Although this can be done easily on the phone, many people tend to forget, so the case will do it and save a lot of battery life. The phone wakes when a call or message comes through, so there are no downsides of the sleep function.
Overall, this is a great little case. It is very cheap when bought in the right places, and protects the phone perfectly.
The Powerball is a strange little product that can be picked up for as cheap as £15. There are a variety of Powerball's on the market, ranging from £15 to £80. I am unaware of the major differences between the various balls apart from the ability to go at greater speeds (and the £80 metal one is, well, made out of metal).
I purchased one of the standard Powerballs for around £20 a few years ago. I had never used one before and had little idea about what it actually was. All I had heard is that it was a good exercise tool, yet not ordinary like your typical gym equipment. The Powerball is quite simply a gyro that spins around inside the casing, and the faster you move it, the faster it will go.
This is possibly the main appeal of the Powerball- the fact that you can measure your scores and aim to beat them (LCD screen not available on the most basic version). This feature means that you have something to aim for, and you will literally be able to see the improvement in your strength and technique as you keep using it.
It is quite hard to pick up at first, and you will find that you'll need the string to get it going. This is a simple practise, and only involves wrapping the string around the ball and pulling it hard, making the gyro spin and so giving you a helping hand. This process can become tedious though after each workout, however fortunately you'll probably work out how to start it with your thumb once you've picked up the correct technique. This takes time, and your first few attempts on the Powerball will probably be unsuccessful. But patience is a virtue with this product, and eventually you will pick it up!
One of the main bonuses is that it will help you gain some strength in your arms. I particularly noticed a boost in my forearm and wrist strength. This does take time, as the Powerball isn't the most strenuous and consistent workout there is. But if you enjoy using it, you will certainly feel the benefits.
The never noticed a problem with the Powerball until mine suddenly stopped working. To be honest, I think I may have dropped the ball a few times over the years, and this really isn't a good idea because the gyro inside needs to be kept undamaged. I think mine was knocked slightly out of place, as for about a year it was hit-and-miss whether it'd work or not. It seems to work okay now, however I can tell that something has been dented or scratched inside as the ball doesn't spin as smoothly as it should.
Overall though, this product is a fun little exercise tool that you'll find yourself wanting to use over and over. It's great to buy with the LCD screen, as it gives you something to work for. I wouldn't like to use it and not know my spin speed, it almost defeats the whole aim.
I have previously heard this printer get bad reviews, and I cannot understand why. I picked this up for £80 around 3 years ago, and it has always served its purpose very well!
The main appeal of this printer for many is that it is an all-in-one. This means that you can print, scan and photocopy documents and photographs, all of which I do frequently. None of the features are there for the sake of it, you really will find use for them and wish you'd had an all-in-one before!
The ink-jet printing quality is excellent (up to 1200 dpi for mono, or 4800x1200 dpi for colour), and there are various settings to improve or reduce it to how you like. This allows you to save ink and print more efficiently. The printer prints between 23-30 pages per minute, which is a fairly fast print speed, and this works the same when photocopying a document.
Scanning is of a similar standard. The printer offers an optical resolution of 1200x2400 dpi, meaning the scan quality is high. I often find that the scanning process is quite slow, as the software you install seems to make the process harder than it should be. There is a 'Scan' button on the printer though, so you can press this to do a quick scan.
Another fairly useful feature on this printer is the 1.5" display. This allows you to view photos from the memory card that you have inserted into the printer (Memory Stick, CF, SD, MMC, xD, MSD) and make a quick print, to save you even loading up your computer. I have found this feature useful at times, and those who print a lot of photographs will really appreciate it.
Overall, this really is a great printer. It is suitable for basic document printing, yet also offers a high enough quality to use for printing photographs etc; and the memory card sockets make this even easier than it normally is. The scanner and photocopier are extremely useful that many tend to take for granted, and you will not go back to a standard printer after owning an all-in-one.
If you are looking for a mid-range DSLR to do photography with, then this camera is worth looking at! For the body alone, prices vary between around £300 to £500. Another £100-200 will be needed on top of this to purchase a low-end lens. But, you get what you pay for with this camera!
First of all, the quality of the photographs is particularly excellent on this camera. As with any Canon, you know you will be investing in some quality, and this camera does not fail to deliver. With 10.1 megapixels, and attachable lenses, you can really capture a photograph exactly how you want it, and to a high standard. There are various quality settings, such as 'Large', 'Small', 'RAW' and 'JPEG' (and many other options and combinations), so you can customise the image how you want. If you're just looking to take a few test photos to take up little memory space, then you can select a small file size at 'JPEG only', and you will achieve what you wanted.
The camera also has a great variety of image settings. You can prioritise different aspects, such as shutter speed, aperture etc, in order to capture the photograph with more ease. If presets aren't for you, then there is the Manual option that allows you to alternate and change all of the individual settings. The ISO, for example, ranges from 100 to 1600, so this gives you flexibility when shooting in various lights.
Overall, this is a great camera. It doesn't have video recording capabilities like some of the newer Canons (e.g. 550D), so this may be a downside to people buying this camera new. However, it does everything you need to capture excellent photographs, which ultimately is what it is for.
The Push-Up Pro rotating grips are designed to enhance a simple workout. Instead of doing basic push-ups, with your hands on the floor, these grips allow you to manoeuvre your hands correctly to get the most out of the workout. The movement targets your muscles more directly, and should improve the exercise and benefits.
My first impression of the grips, which I picked up for £4, was that they appeared fairly cheap and poorly built. I didn't expect much at all for the price, so I wasn't surprised by this. However since using them, I really don't think that this makes much of a difference. As long as the grips rotate smoothly, which they are designed to do, then they will be effective as a workout tool. I generally use them on the 'Normal' level (like a standard push-up), and they stay firmly in position whilst I complete the push-up.
Nonetheless, the price does have its downsides. The cheap build-quality means that the smoothness of the grip rotating gradually depletes, and ultimately becomes rather too loose. This doesn't affect the workout too significantly, but a better quality pair of grips would no doubt have a better motion, and therefore effect. The bases of the grips are designed to stay stuck to the floor, and they normally do. There are occasions though where I find that the grips are slipping. This may be the surface I am using them on.
The set also includes an instruction sheet and a nutrition/workout guide. This is useful for beginners wanting a little bit of advice before the workout, and makes a change from reading the endless online articles.
Overall, these are great for the price you pay. Even if they don't last too long, they still have benefits whilst they are working!