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I normally go to the hairdresser for highlights but sometimes when I am trying to save money, I colour my hair myself. This is one that I have used a few times now and really rated it for ease of use and also results.
About the colourants
This is designed to be an easy to use colourant and you apply in the same way as a hair mask. It also doesn't drip once applied to your hair. It has an amino-active protein in the colourant to strengthen hair and the conditioner has shea butter in it to nourish hair.
This is very easy to use.
Firstly you remove the inlay from the jar and add the tube of colour creme to the jar then shake the tub forty times to mix the ingredients together. Then start to apply the colour using your fingers to dry hair. As it a crème formula, it doesn't drip and I find it very easy to apply.
One thing that I should mention that did freak me out when I first used this colourant was the bright blue colour creme and it remains blue while it develops.
After waiting for around 45 minutes, I went to rinse out the colourant. I found that it was very easy to wash out and within around two minutes, the water was running clear, which meant that I had washed out all of the colourant.
I then use the nicely scented rich conditioner and leave it for around two to three minutes before rinsing. As the conditioner contains shea, it has a nice slightly nutty scent although sadly it doesn't really last very long on my hair after use.
The first time that I used this, I only left it on around 25 minutes and I was left with hair that had a slight pearl blonde shimmer and I was very happy with the results. The second time, I left it on longer and while I wasn't as happy with the colour, it was even so I can't complain too much. It isn't quite the colour on the front of the box but it is a quite light blonde.
I also found that for a few washes after using this colourant, my hair still feels quite soft and the condition is noticeably better.
I did find that the first time I used this colourant, the colour did fade quite quickly but I did get around six weeks of decent colour from the box before it started to fade - similar to some other colourants I have used in the past.
Price and Availability
I bought mine from Savers where it cost me £3.99. It is available for a similar price in most chemists, pharmacies and I have even seen some colours in Home Bargains for the same price.
I had placed an order recently with The Body Shop online, and as I only needed something around £2 or so to being my order up to the amount for free delivery. I decided to order a 'Born Lippy' lip balms and chose the orange one as I normally like orange scents and flavours.
As soon as I opened the lip balm, I could detect the familiar orange scent, as it smells like the Orange Satsuma bubbles shower gel I was addicted to in my teens. The balm itself is a bright orange colour, and you can see glittery bits through it. I swirled my finger around and applied a thin layer to my lips. Immediately, it felt thick and greasy on my lips and in fact I had to wipe it off as it felt so horrible, sticky and greasy on my lips. Even the taste of this balm seemed nasty and synthetic.
I checked to see if was any pigment on my lips, and this just seemed to highlight any dry areas on my lips and that I had a few random bits of glitter on my lips. I remember the one I used to use when I was in my teens left my lips with a slight gloss, but this just looked like I'd got some random bits of glitter and something oily on my lips.
I can't really comment on the hydrating properties of this balm, as I haven't been able to keep this on my lips for long enough to actually test it but I can't think that the horrible, greasy mess that this balm is would be able to provide any moisturising benefits, even if you could keep this on your lips for long enough to get any benefits. It does contain beeswax, which I know helps protect my lips and also leaves my lips feeling soft but whatever else is in this balm means it's too horrible to keep.
I have tried this balm a few times now, just in case I was a bit harsh, but each time I have to immediately wipe this off and put my usual balm on instead, as it is such a horrible consistency and has such a horrible effect on my lips. The synthetic and not at all orange taste is another thing that has annoyed me – it smells so orangey yet there is no orange taste at all once you apply the balm. What has made things even worse, I accidentally ordered two of these balms, and as I think it's too much hassle to return one balm to the body shop, they will both go in the bin. A waste of £4 and I think I will be avoiding the Body Shop lip balms in future.
I feel that even 1 star is too much for this balm, but I can't seem to give it a rating of no stars.
I bought this book from a charity shop recently and I bought it because the cover drew me in.
There wasn't much of a blurb on the back of this book and I started reading the book only knowing what the cover told me.
The first chapter or two, I thought I knew what this book would be about from a few hints that were dropped but when the reason why the family were fragmented shocked me. I assumed that it was going to be something along the line of that they were on the verge of splitting up and the kitten united the family, so I was very shocked when the story took the turn that it did.
As I said, the cover didn't give much away although I was curious so decided to give it a go. It did take a few chapters to get really involved, but I kept on reading as I hoped things would improve. I thought I had a lot figured out from hints in the first few chapters and wasn't sure whether or not to read on but when the reason why the family end up so fragmented was revealed, I was shocked and the book took a different turn.
I did think the book was a little slow to start but I guess that was just the author setting the scene and once the book got going, I found the pace of the book was a lot quicker. I would have liked to have seen some pictures of the family and/or Cleo through the book which I felt would have enhanced the book, but there was only a cover photo of a small black kitten which I assume wasn't Cleo as the picture credit is Getty Images and has no mention about whether or not the kitten was the one in the book.
I would recommend this book to any animal overs who have enjoyed similar books in the past such as Marley and Me. While this book is similar, it also deals with grief and how a family dealt with death so I found it was very tough going in places. However, despite their grief, there was a positive thread that ran through the book, even at the darkest moments and it is clear that the arrival of Cleo had a very positive effect on the family.
I found the book was touching and funny and once I got into the story, I found that I couldn't put the book down and I was always wanting to read more about Cleo and her adventures and foibles.
Price and Availability
This book is currently available from Amazon. It is £3.95 for the Kindle version and the paperback version is £5.99. Used copies are available from 1p, although there is a £2.80 delivery charge on top of this as well.
I had been looking for a new moisturiser for a while I was trying to save some money by buying something that wasn’t too expensive.
This is a pale green colour and has a light, fresh scent. It has a very light texture and starts to sink in to my skin in seconds. It seems that as soon as it comes into contact with my face, it turns into a thin liquid which my skin drinks up. However, it does seem to take a while to completely sink in and I have to wait around five minutes before I can put my makeup on. It is cooling when I apply it to my skin and this cooling effect combined with the fresh scent is very invigorating in the morning.
I have found that with this moisturiser I only need to use a pea sized amount to cover my whole face as a tiny bit goes a long way. I have had mine for around 3 – 4 months now and have been using it almost daily.
The main issue that I have with this moisturiser is that it doesn’t seem to stop the oiliness of my skin. Despite the claims that this moisturiser will leave you with a matte finish, I can use this in the morning by lunchtime, my skin is shiny and oily.
I also found that the claims that it enhanced complexion to be rubbish as well, as I found that if anything, my skin looked worse after using this and that rather than hiding any spots or patches of redness, it seemed to highlight them.
Price and Availability
I bought mine on offer in Boots and paid £2.99 which I think is decent for a moisturiser.
I am undecided about this moisturiser. I liked the scent and found the texture was really nice. I also only needed a small amount each time so it’s economical. However, I was disappointed with the way this did nothing to prevent the oiliness and shininess which would be my main issue when it comes to my skin. For a moisturiser that promises a matte finish, to find that my skin seemed to look oilier and shinier after using this, it doesn't seem fit for purpose. It claims to give 24 hour moisture and shine control but for myself, it was more like 24 minutes.
I would recommend this to anyone with dry to combination skin who is looking for something that is hydrating but doesn’t cost a lot of money. For my oily skin, I will keep looking as it just doesn't live up to the claims on the bottle for me.
If you don't have very oily skin like myself though, this could be worth a try. Even at full price, it's at the cheaper end of the moisturiser scale and for £2 - £4 it's worth a try.
While I'm not vegetarian, sometimes I like to seek out alternative versions of some of my favourite meat snacks. I love mini eggs but find that some supermarket 'cheaper' ones can taste not as nice or can occasionally have gristly pieces of meat in the eggs which is very off-putting.
I had been looking for these for a while after reading a review but they had eluded me recently when I saw some in Sainsbury's. They cost me £2.30 which is more than I normally spend on mini eggs but I really wanted to try them so bought a packet.
My packet had 12 eggs inside, each in it's own compartment. You just peel open the packet to get to the eggs. While the pack is easy opened, I would have preferred some way of resealing the pack to keep out air and to stop the eggs going off quickly.
I did find that when I first bit into the egg, they aren't as soft as their pork counterparts and this was a slightly odd sensation to me as someone more used to meat versions. However, after I had eaten one or two of the eggs, I soon got used to this new, firmer texture.
I really liked the taste of these eggs. They are very flavourful and there is a strong herby taste that makes these eggs very moreish. I do find that there's not a great deal of flavour from the egg mayonaise middle of these eggs but the herby 'sausage' layer more than makes up for the lack of flavour from the centre of these eggs.
Price and Availability
I paid £2.30 for mine from Sainsbury's but according to MySupermarket, these can be bought in various supermarkets including Asda and Waitrose for around £1.50 - £2.00. I do wonder if maybe they aren't as popular in Northern Ireland and not as readily available and would explain the higher cost as well.
Nutritional Information per egg
Energy – kj/kcal 215/51
Carbohydrate2 4.2g (of which sugars 0.2g)
Fat11.5g2.3g (of which saturates 0.2g)
Mycoprotein (34%), water, onion, sage & onion stuffing (breadcrumb, rusk, dehydrated onion, salt, herbs, onion powder, chives, wheat flour, pepper and sage extracts), textured wheat protein (wheat protein, wheat starch), vegetable oil, flavouring (with colour: iron oxides), egg mayonnaise (16%) [chopped free range egg, mayonnaise (vegetable oil, free range egg yolk, spirit vinegar, sugar, mustard flour)], tapioca starch, dried free range egg white, Cumberland spice seasoning (salt, wheat flour, dextrose, rusk, spice & herb extracts, pepper, thyme, parsley), gelling agent: pectin; batter & breadcrumb (wheat flour, salt, yeast, vegetable oil, colour: paprika extract).
For those with allergies these eggs contains Egg, Mustard & Wheat Gluten. Produced in a factory which handles Milk as well.
I have been using this for years, but when I ran out last year, I decided to try to use up the other concealers and highlighters that were in my makeup bag. However, my thoughts kept drifting back to Touche Eclat and when I saw this in the duty free in Gatwick for £20, it was soon mine.
The packaging on this highlighter points to it being a premium product. The outside box is a gold colour with minimal detail. There is a small information leaflet inside the box which gives you some information about the product. Normally the pen itself is gold, again with minimal information on it, but my latest one is the (I think) limited edition animal print and gold pen. I do like the design on mine, as it really stands out in my makeup bag and still looks very glam.
To use the highlighter, you need to click the top of the pen a few times, until you see the liquid starting to come thorough between the brushes. When I first opened my new one, it was around 12 clicks, and then I needed another couple of clicks to get enough of the highlighter onto the brush. Having a click method of application means that there is no wastage with this product, as it only dispenses what is needed.
I use this to brighten up any dark areas under my eyes, and also add some to the bridge of my nose to brighten my complexion. As this is more of a highlighter than a concealer, while I do dab a small amount on any blemishes, I don’t want to be highlighting them, so a very tiny amount seems to do the job of hiding them slightly.
While this isn’t cheap, I find that a pen lasts a long time, as you only need a tiny amount to conceal and highlight. It really does make a difference to my skin, and leaves me looking more awake and my complexion looks radiant. I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a versatile product that really does make a difference to your complexion.
This does cost around £20 - £25 but as I only need a tiny amount it does last ages - just so long as I remember to wash the brush as for some reason they start to smell slightly after a few uses.
My friend gave me this book a while ago. She had hated it and warned me that it was rubbish but at least I could read it and get a review out of it.
The main character is 32 year old Cas who is by her own admission amoral and uses and loses people. She's determined that men are only playthings and doesn't ever want a relationship or to give men the opportunity to hurt her.
The TV channel she works for had been losing viewers so her boss gives Cas the task of boosting viewing figures by coming up with a programme to grip the nation. Cas’s answer is ‘Sex with an ex’ which appeals to people who are unsure about their partner’s fidelity before marriage to find out if the person is faithful or if there is an ex they still had feelings for. The show is an instant hit although it does tear the lives apart of contestants.
Darren would be the ideal contestant – he’s attractive, moral and the fact that he refuses to take part only makes Cas want him more. She chases after him and after a few days, she has the feeling that Darren is someone that she could fall for. Will Cass take the plunge with Darren or will she stick to the barriers she has so carefully placed around herself?
I have always been a fan of Adele Park’s writing and her way of taking typical chick lit and turning it on its head. This book is a fantastic example of that. I have read many books which have featured men with Cas's attitudes but never another book which features a female lead character who has casual sex and whose favourite ‘conquests’ are married ones as there’s less chance of more than a quick fumble.
To be fair, Cas is an unlikeable character and one that I should be programmed to hate as her morals and opinions are far removed from my own but the overall feeling that I had for Cas was pity rather than condemnation. It is revealed why she hardened her heart towards men and it’s clear that she has never really gotten over the fact that her father left when she was a young child and having to witness the devastation of her mother. Yes, some of her thoughts and opinions are wrong but at the same time, I can understand why an event like that at a young age could shape your opinions of men for life.
I found this book easy to read and to follow. I think maybe it helped that I had low expectations of this book, but I did really enjoy the book and was surprised at how much I actually liked Cas once more of her story was revealed.
I am fortunate in that my friends know that I love anything strawberry scented and I normally end up with lots of strawberry scented bath stuff every year for Christmas and my birthday. I got this in a strawberry scented gift set from a friend last Christmas.
When you open the lid, you can immediately detect a lovely strawberry scent which isn't too synthetic. I think that The Body Shop Strawberry scented items always smell less synthetic than some other brands of shower gels and this one is no exception. The polish is quite thick but melts into the skin to provide you with a creamy lather as well as some light exfoliation from the walnut shells that have been included to give a bit of exfoliation.
While I normally use a shower puff in the shower, I find that using a puff with this sort of lessens the effectiveness of the scrub as it tends to get caught up in the mesh around the puff. Instead I use this with my hands although it does seem that I need to use more of this to get a decent lather.
This is one of those products that does confuse me slightly as I'm not entirely sure of it's use. It's not a shower gel as there's scrubby bits through it but it's not an exfoliant as it's not 'scrubby' enough. It just seems to lightly buff the skin to leave it slightly softer and brighter. However,
I would rate this body polish as one of my favourite items from The Body Shop. It leaves my skin looking and smelling lovely and while I would say this is gentle enough to use daily, I prefer to keep mine for special occasions.
This is available from The Body Shop and costs £5 for 75ml and £10 for 200ml. While it is more expensive than a shower gel, there are often offers and 40% off deals with The Body Shop so you can usually pick this up for less.
When I hit 30, I started to notice some differences in my skin and a few fine lines started to appear around my eyes. Up until that point I hadn’t been that bothered when it came to ageing and using products that may help delay the effects on my skin. When these fine lines appeared, I decided to start using an eye cream to see if it made any difference. I also had a few dark circles under my eyes from those nights where my insomnia was at it’s worst so something that would help improve the appearance of my eyes would be a welcome addition to my skincare routine.
I chose this Garnier eye cream as I’d heard good reports about it and it wasn’t overly expensive.
This cream is quite thin and is a bright white colour. I only need a tiny amount of the cream to cover my eye area and as the nozzle on the cream is quite fine, it’s easy to dispense a small amount. This cream does leave a slight film on my skin for a few seconds after application but this disappears quickly and I can then start to apply my makeup if I’m wearing any. Once this is absorbed into my skin, the skin around my eyes feels softer and there are no traces left of the cream.
I was really surprised with the effects of this eye cream. It could just be my imagination but some of the fine lines around my eyes seem to have disappeared and others are less noticeable than they were before I started using the cream. I also look more awake and while I still get some dark circles under my eyes, the puffiness is reduced and I look more awake in the mornings.
I wouldn’t say this is a miracle cream as I’m not convinced that anything other than surgery can prevent or hold back the signs of ageing but I have noticed a difference to my skin and this has encouraged me to keep using this particular eye cream.
Even if this hadn’t made much difference to the appearance of my skin, I would continue using this as I think that anything that adds moisture to my skin is a good thing and I feel that this eye cream is very moisturising.
I would recommend this eye cream as I have noticed a real difference to my skin after using it and I am happy to keep on using it, particularly since I think it’s very cost effective as well as I only need a tiny amount each day.
At £8 for 15ml, it's not that expensive, although there are cheaper eye creams on the market, I think I will stick with this one as I noticed a real difference.
As I have mentioned in other reviews, I tend to use a lot of dry shampoo as I don’t like to wash my hair every day. I have tried lots of different brands with varying success but I do like to try as many types out to see what works and what doesn’t. I saw this in a small chemist close to home for £2.99 and thought I would give it a go as I really rated the shampoos from this brand.
The Dry Shampoo
This dry shampoo is said to be packed with ingredients that are said to boost blonde or grey hair.
* Violet Pigments to enhance Silver Tones and counteract fading
* Optical Brighteners which nstantly boost grey/white/blonde hair
* UV Filters which help protect Against Environmental Damage
* Sunflower Seed Extract which offers natural colour protection
* Natural Betaine, Guar, Panthenol and wheat amino acids which help to prevent wiry, frizzy, coarse hair
You use this dry shampoo in the same way as every other dry shampoo that I have used. Keeping the can around 30cm from my hair, I spray this on the areas where I feel that I need some extra help (usually around my parting and the roots around my face). I then rub it in lightly and leave for a few minutes before brushing out.
This dry shampoo doesn’t feel damp on my hair when it’s first sprayed on unlike some other brands that I have used. You can see this on my hair but I find that once I brush my hair, I don’t see any residue.
When I first sprayed this, the first thing I noticed was the smell. Unfortunately, this dry shampoo seems to have the same horrible chemical smell as the twice a week shampoo that I have used in the past. I was disappointed as I like my dry shampoos to have a nice scent but thankfully the scent of this one doesn’t seem to linger on my hair and I can’t detect this even when my fringe falls across my face.
I did like this dry shampoo but I just wish that the scent had been nicer. It does give my hair a boost though and really helps to bring out my highlights. I would recommend this dry shampoo to anyone with blonde or white hair that can have a tendency to look slightly dull after a day or so, as it does help to make my hair look brighter and shinier as well as removing grease or oil that is along my hairline.
Price and Availability
I bought my 200ml can from a local chemist for £2.99. I haven’t seen that in many shops but I am sure that larger Boots and other chemists will stock this. I think that it's a decent enough dry shampoo for the price that I paid.
I was in H&M in Dublin a few months ago and as I only had about 2 euro’s worth of stuff to buy and needed to use my card so when I saw these 5ml nail polishes at the till, I decided to grab two just so I’d have enough to warrant a card purchase.
These nail polishes were 95 cents or 99p had I bought them in the UK, so I figured that even if they were rubbish, I hadn’t wasted a lot of money. I bought a dark blue and a pale pink as I thought the blue would be nice for evenings and the pink for daytime. This review will recount my experiences of the dark blue coloured polish.
As I had also got a base coat with a recent beauty box, I decided to try out both of these together, so the fact that I used a base coat may mean that two coats of this polish was all that I needed to produce an even colour. This polish comes in a small bottle which is clear so you can see the colour through the glass. The brush is understandably quite small as the polish itself is only 4.5cm in height and the brush is quite fine as well. Despite this, I found that it this polish was easy to apply as it was a good consistency. I thought that this polish was a nice consistency as well, it was thick but not so thick that it was hard to apply.
I hadn’t expected a lot from this polish but I was pleasantly surprised. The polish was a good consistency and was easy to apply. I only needed two coats to give me a deep dark blue colour on my nails and it was also dry quite quickly. I did find that when I first applied this polish, I was stupid enough to be wrapping some presents a few hours later and the polish did chip quite badly on two nails. It was easy to remove and start again though and as this was quick drying, I didn’t mind too much.
Oddly, despite this chipping quite badly while I was wrapping presents, once I had the polish applied on all nails, it lasted around 2 – 3 days without chipping too much. Maybe it was just because I was peeling off tape and giving the polish too much abuse that it chipped so badly at first.
Would I recommend?
Despite my few niggles with this polish, considering it cost me less than £1, I really can’t complain. I have paid a lot more for polishes that have performed worse than this one. These also have a recommendation of around 30 months after opening so it's a good buy in my opinion.
Unlike other Nightwish albums, this one is a film score rather than a standalone album. I knew it would be different from other Nightwish albums but I was unprepared for just how different it would be.
1. "Taikatalvi" 2:35
2. "Storytime" 5:22
3. "Ghost River" 5:28
4. "Slow, Love, Slow" 5:51
5. "I Want My Tears Back" 5:08
6. "Scaretale" 7:32
8. "Turn Loose the Mermaids" 4:20
9. "Rest Calm" 7:02
10. "The Crow, the Owl and the Dove" 4:10
11. "Last Ride of the Day" 4:33
12. "Song of Myself" 13:38
I (along with many other fans of the band I'm imagining) felt the band wasn't the same without Tarja's powerful vocals. This album shows that Anette can hold her own, and if I'm honest, this album would never have worked with Tarja's vocals, and if anything, operatic vocals would have ruined the atmosphere of this album. Anette has a strong clear voice, and although her vocal range is a lot lower, her voice fitted perfectly on this album. I know that Anette has now been removed from the band and they have gone back to the operatic roots with theirnew singer, but Anette should be really proud of this release.
I can understand that this album really divided opinions of Nightwish fans, as it was so different to anything else the band has done. There are some real surprises on this album, even jazz influenced tracks and ballads. I think you need to keep an open mind, and remember that this is a film score as well as a Nightwish album, which explains some of the twists and turns through the album and the inclusion of tracks that seem slightly out of place. I am a massive fan of Tuomas Holopainen and I can understand the vision behind this release and think it was executed well. The inclusion of many diverse styles and artists, as well as the full orchestral backing on some tracks really helps this stand out in my opinion.
I have to confess that listening to film scores would never usually cross my mind, and I rarely purchase soundtrack albums. Maybe if I had more of a background of listening to film scores, I could critique this better, but as it stands, all I can do is critique it as a Nightwish fan, even though it's very different to anything else released by the band.
While this album won't appeal to everyone, I would recommend giving it a listen, as it really is something unique. I know that this album really divide Nightwish fans, as it's so different to everything else that they have released.
Price and Availability
You can buy a physical copy of this album new on Amazon for £10.00, and from £5.00 for a used copy. The mp3 version is £7.49 on Amazon.
Clinique’s chubby sticks have been on my wish list for a long time. Hints to friends and family hadn’t worked so when I heard you could get one free with Glamour, I went in search of the magazine. I was very keen to try out these, particularly as I have read so many positive reviews online about Chubby Sticks. The one that I will be reviewing today is the 'Super Strawberry' shade.
These crayons promise to relieve dry, cracked lips and to provide moisture as well as a slight sheen. According to Clinique, they contain comforting oils and butters to relieve dry, cracked lips and Vitamin E to prevent further damage and to provide defence against environmental damage.
The chubby stick itself has a chunky crayon style applicator with a thick applicator. To use this, you can just twist the tube to reveal more or less of the crayon, depending on what you need. You then just apply this to your lips as needed.
While it's never advisable to eat lip glosses and balms, I do like glosses and balms to smell and 'taste' quite nice. Oddly, this one just has a slightly synthetic almost playdoh smell and similarly, there isn't really any taste to this if I lick my lips after applying this.
The gloss goes on easily and doesn't drag at all across my lips. It seems to melt onto my lips and leaves behind a slight texture that reminds me of some of the thicker balms that I have in my collection. Colourwise, this seems to leave a slight red tint on my lips rather than being a full on red shade. I do feel that the shade is quite flattering though and would suit most people. The colour on my lips is a quite matt shade and not the gloss that I was initially expecting it to be.
After wanting to try these for over a year and it had been my plan to buy one as soon as I had used up the glosses that I had, I jumped at the chance when I could get one for the cost of a magazine. I have to admit though that I was very disappointed when I tried these for myself.
I did find that these seemed to dry out my lips slightly after I used them rather than the softening effects that I had hoped for. After hearing so many good reviews about the Chubby Sticks, I had convinced myself that they were amazing and instead I was slightly disappointed with the effects of these sticks. There is a hint of colour and it does leave my lips looking and feeling nice, but I have used tinted balms that are a lot cheaper to buy with similar or better results.
Considering the high cost of these balms normally, I feel I can't really recommend them and I'm now glad that I didn't spend £17.00 on one.