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Last year before our holidays myself and my partner wanted our teeth whitened. We both had quite white teeth as we don't smoke and rarely drink cola, our downfall was drinking a lot of coffee which had lead to slight staining on our teeth. I was looking at getting this done professionally but my friend told me to try the Crest Whitening Strips first. After using a home whitening kit before I was a bit reluctant to try these as my previous kit was a hassle, tasted vile, and had no real effect on my teeth. But she reassured me that these actually work and are very easy to use.
Crest is a global toothcare brand, producing toothpaste, toothbrushes, etc. Although we can buy Crest toothpaste/brushes in the UK, the whitening strips are only available to buy over the counter in America, therefore these have to be ordered online. Type 'crest whitening strips' into google and you will come across hundreds of distributors in the UK. These are available in different strengths including professional effects, vivid, and gentle strips. We chose the professional strips and paid £35.99 for 20 strips. I have looked online today and you can currently pick up 20 strips for around £25, we bought ours in June 2012.
The strips arrived in a blue cardboard box and contained an additional leaflet on how to use the strips. Inside the box were 20 sets of strips, each sealed in an individual blue foil packet. The instuructions show that you need to open the packet, which will contain 2 strips; a longer one for the top teeth, and a slightly smaller one for the bottom teeth. Line the strips up with your teeth, making sure the strip is covering all of the surface of your teeth and fold over the top. Leave for 30 minutes and the remove. Easy.
We went on two summer holidays last year, and decided to use these in the 2 weeks running up to our first holiday. I found the application very easy, it is as simple as the instructions. Peel the strips off the backing. They have a gel attached to them which is a very light blue and tastes slightly minty. Line up with my teeth and fold over. The taste of the gel is not unpleasant compared to previous whitening products I have used. The good thing about these strips is that you can talk (although with a slight lisp) and even drink water whilst using them. They are not uncomfortable to use at all. After around 30 minutes i'd simply pull the strips off. By this time the gel had slightly foamed under the strips. It leaves a slight residue, it advises not to clean your teeth after, but being the hygiene freak I am I had to. We used these every night for 10 days.
I was absolutely amazed by the results, myself and my partner's teeth were very white after using these. After a few days we started noticing a difference in our teeth, any stains we had were removed and we were left with very naturally looking white teeth. I feel when some peope have their teeth whitened they go too far and look like they have fake teeth, but this left a whitening effect which looked very natural, but very white. I never expected them to work this well and we were both very pleased with the result.
It advises you on the packet that you can use a maximum of 2 treatments a year. We have yet to buy another treatment as our teeth are still very white. We use whitening toothpastes and this has helped maintain the bright white colour. If it gets to June this year and I feel I need another course I will definitely be buying these again. They are excellent value for money and provide excellent results.
I have to point out we bought the strongest set of strips, so am not sure if the gentle strips would have the same effect as the professional effects ones.
The only downside to these for me, is that these can make your teeth slightly sensitive after using them. After a few days of using them, there was a slight stinging sensation whilst wearing the strips. I was fine with this but if you already suffer from sensitive teeth this may be something to bear in mind when choosing which strips to buy. This sensitivity lasts a few weeks after using them, but itsn't anything major. I was on holiday 3 days after using them and I was still drinking cold drinks and eating ice cream.
As you may have seen from my other recent reviews, I am making a concious effort at the moment to improve the condition of my skin and have started a new skin care routine. Part of this routine means giving my skin little 'extras' to further help it's appearance. One of these 'extras' is giving my skin a weekly face mask. This will help to draw out any impurities and close any pores on my face.
This week I chose to use the Montagne Jeunesse Green Tea Peel Off mask. I used to use these face masks years and years ago and haven't really used one since I was a teenager. This stood out to me on the shelf due to it's unique packaging, and for a pound, it's not much money to pay if it doesn't suit my skin.
The Montagne Jeunesse range look quite unique compared to the other face masks on the shelf. In a wiggly shaped foil packet, they have bright coloured scenes of nature on the front, and have a lady with a face mask on, with her eyes covered by the stand out ingredients in the mask. In this case green tea leaves, lemon, and ginger. This mask contains 10ml, and is a detox and pore cleansing mask, which you can peel off your face, rather than the clay types which you wash off (and are quite messy!). The green tea and ginger have detoxing and purifying qualities, whilst lemon (nature's cleanser) will leave the skin thoroughly clean.
How to Use
I cleansed my face then applied the product. To open the packet you need to pull a labelled circle out of the foil, I found this quite tricky to open and ended up getting the scissors out. Once open the face mask is a green gel, which you apply over your face, avoiding the eye area. The gel is not sticky and has a pleasant cooling sensation which lasts until it is dry. The smell, not over powering, is slightly perfumed but has very fresh tones to it.
I applied this to my face and left for 15-20 mins until it dried. You can tell once it is dry as it changes colour into a more solid paler green colour, and feels tight on the skin. I stretched my face and found this very easy to peel off. It doesn't break into pieces and peels off in pretty much one piece. As I used to love peeling glue off things at school I really enjoyed doing this! One thing which I did which I regretted was get some on my hair line, which really hurt when pulling off!
Afterwards, I toned and moisturised. I didn't put any make up on for the rest of the day as wanted to keep my skin as clean as the mask had left it.
Does it work?
I really liked this facemask, it didn't irritate my skin or cause any breakouts. The cooling sensation left my skin feeling really refreshed. Once removed my skin definitely looked fresher and brighter. It felt a bit firmer and was very soft and smooth. For a pound I am looking forward to trying more facemasks in the range and making this part of my weekly skin care routine.
I am currently trying to 'revamp' my skin, as it is looking really dull and in bad condition. I'm not sure if this is due to the extreme weather or me wearing quite heavy make up most days (probably the latter). I am doing this by making a big effort to drink 8 glasses of water a day (harder than it sounds!), having make up free days, and making sure my skin is cleansed, toned, and moisturised both morning and night. To do this I have purchased products from the Neutrogena Visibly Clear range to give my skin a bit of a kick start. Today is my review of the 'blackhead eliminating toner'.
I have combination skin, dry cheeks and forehead, oily nose and chin. I don't get many spots anymore, as a teenager I used to suffer quite badly, but think I have luckily outgrown that stage. I still do get occasional breakouts, and have a few in the oily areas.
I never used to tone my skin, but after doing a lot of research into ways to make my skin healthier, I have learnt that toning has a very important part to play. For anyone who doesn't know, it closes the pores after cleansing, which not only results in smaller pores, but will also make it harder for bacteria to get into the pores and cause breakouts. With this in mind I purchased the 'blackhead eliminating toner'. This was £3.50 for 200ml from Asda.
This comes in a clear bottle and is clear in colour, with the Neutrogena label on the front in the standard orange and grey colours. This product can also be used as a cleanser on it's own, but doubles up as a toner also. It claims to have a special blackhead eliminating ingredient to make spots harder to form.
I use this after cleansing my face with the visibly clear scrub. I dry my face, and using the rough side of a cotton pad, pour some onto the pad until about half of it is saturated, about two short 'pours' will do this. It is worth noting this product just has a hole in the bottle cap to release the product so it can come out quite fast at times.
I wipe this across my face, in upward motions, and wait for it to dry (takes a few seconds) before applying my moisturiser. I often find once I have use this after cleansing there is nearly always some 'dirt' on the pad, which means it is really clearing my skin.
When using this toner I find it can be quite strong, if you are used to gentle toners this isn't for you. It is not as harsh as the Clinique one is but you can definitely feel it working. Saying that it doesn't feel unpleasant across the skin. It doesn't make my skin feel tight or dry it out, and leaves a nice soft finish to the skin. It has a pleasant smell to it, not dissimilar to the rest of the product range. It is very fresh smelling, sort of cucumber and slightly floral (I am rubbish at describing smells, so won't attempt to much!).
Does it work?
I have been using this for 3 weeks and have seen a definite improvement to my skin, and have seen the number of spots/blackheads reduce. This could be down to this product, but I think drinking a lot of water, wearing less foundation, and generally looking after my skin has helped with this also. However, for the price I will be definitely repurchasing this. I find it as good as the Clinique toner I used to use, and seems to work well with my skin.
I have recently had a skin care overhaul, in a bid to improve my skin allowing me to wear less foundation. I have combination skin and usually just wash and moisturise my face. My last moisturiser I used was very thick and felt it blocked my pores making my skin worse so needed something a bit lighter for my skin.
I came across the 'visibly clear' by Neutrogena and after being pleased with the face scrub (see previous review), I decided to purchase the 'oil free' moisturiser.
This was £4.79 from Boots for 50ml. It comes in a box with the distinctive orange and grey Neutrogena packaging. Inside the box is a slim bottle with a square lid, which makes it easy to stand up on your bathroom shelf.
I use this moisturiser twice daily after cleansing and toning (now I tone!), morning and evening. The cream itself is white and has a very light pleasant fragrance to it. A sweet fresh fragrance. This moisturiser is oil free, and gives a 'matte' finish to your skin. When applying the moisturiser I only need a small amount, about the size of a 20p, a little goes a long way. It feels very light on the skin, and in no way heavy or greasy. It leaves my skin feeling refreshed, clean and soft to touch. It moisturises my dry parts well, but doesn't cause the oily parts of my face to become more oily (if that makes sense), or any outbreaks.
This provides a nice even finish, and is a good base for make up. I have been using this now for 3 weeks, in conjunction with the face scrub, and toner, and love it. My skin looks much healthier and fresher. I felt it was a bit 'dull' looking before, but was using a very heavy moisturiser. This moisturiser suits my skin very well. I am very pleased with the results and still have 3/4 of the bottle left. This is excellent value for money and I will be repurchasing this when I finish it.
I received the Soap and Glory Clarity facewash as a gift from my sister. This is supposed to be a none drying, foaming face wash, which has a skin brightening formula from the 'superfruit' plum.
This is a 150ml tube, and is retailing in Boots for £7. The face wash itself is a turquoise gel, with exfoliating beads. To use, apply to wet skin and the gel will lather, then rinse off.
I started using this as I had ran out of my usual cleanser. I am a bit hit and miss when it comes to Soap and Glory products, some of them I love, and some I find do not work for me at all. This was one of those.
When using the product I used a blob of gel about the size of a 10p, when I apllied it to my skin it felt quite greasy. I lathered, the exfoliating beads I couldn't really feel on my skin so don't think they had any benefit to me. When I washed this off I felt like it was still on my skin. I had to rinse my face about 5 times to get the product fully off, and even then it didn't feel fully clean. I'm a bit slack with toning my face, but definitely needed to after this. It didn't dry my face out, but didn't leave the fresh feeling I like from a cleanser.
I carried on using this for a few weeks, as I understand that it sometimes takes time for a cleanser to work with your skin. Every time I use it I had this sticky, greasy feeling. And never felt that it washed off properly. After a week I noticed I was starting to get breakouts on my face. After around 3 weeks of use it went in the bin. Once I started using my normal cleanser my skin cleared up and looked in better health.
Overall, i'm disappointed with this product. I love some of the Soap and Glory range but sadly this wasn't for me.
As my son is called Bobby, when my mother in law saw the 'Big Bobby Car' in the Early Learning Centre she couldn't resist picking it up. As I didn't buy it I am not sure how much my mother in law paid for it, but after doing a bit of web based research these are currently retailing at 27.99 in ELC.
This is a car for young children to sit on, and move themselves around on. Good for learning motor skills, and how to create a lot of noise!
When Bobby got this it was fully assembled apart from the steering wheel which easily screwed into place. I believe that the wheels need to be attached to the car, but this looks very simple to do and involves fastening two screws for the front wheels, and sliding the back wheels in. And to be honest if my mother in law can assemble it anyone can!
The car itself is very lightweight (I can pick it up with one hand), it is a red plastic and has a seat moulded into the design which allows the child to put their legs over the side and pull themselves along. It has a hole in the front which would be ideal to tie some rope on and pull your child along outside. The wheel steers the front wheels, and it has a squeaky horn on the steering wheel.
The design is very bright being bright red. It has some stickers on the side, on the 'grill' and eyes on the 'headlights', which is a nice touch. As Bobby has been learning face parts he keeps pointing at them and saying 'eyes'.
The idea is to sit on the car, put a leg over each side and pull yourself along. Bobby didn't understand this at first so I had to demonstrate! Once, i'd shown him what to do he was off. He really loves this car, he plays on it every day and likes to race around the house in it (wooden floors make a lot of noise!). He even trys to take it out of the door with us when we go out places. We have yet to take it outside but I imagine once the weather improves this will be taken down to the park with us.
The car is very sturdy (myself and my partner have both sat on it), is wipe clean, and very safe for a child to use. As long as they are big enough for their feet to touch the floor I can't see them falling off of it. Bobby has a 3 stage bike but he prefers his car, and is much lighter and easier to carry around. For £30 I think this is a really good price for something he will get so much use out of.
The Fisher Price Jumperoo was bought for us by Bobby's grandma when he was 6 months old. This is an interactive bouncer for babies who are starting to be mobile (can lift their heads up/sit up). This cost £100 from Mothercare and does require batteries.
The Jumperoo is a stand alone bouncer, which is different to the more traditional ones which are hung from a doorframe. It is a jungle themed musical bouncer which suited us as Bobby seems to have had jungle themed everything since he was born!
This is self assembly, but is very easy to put together. The bouncer has a metal ring at the bottom, the pieces just clip into place. It then has 3 metal legs, which clip into the bottom part and have the seat attached. The seat itself is a fabric frog, and this attaches to the seat frame. This was the part I found trickiest to assemble, but wasn't too hard. The 3 interactive parts to the jumperoo then just clip into the outerframe easily.
Once assembled, it was time for Bobby to try it out! The baby sits in the seat, before allowing them to use it you need to check that their feet are not fully flat on the floor, if they are you can adjust the seat height. This has 3 different height settings which we found very useful. The seat fully turns around, so baby can turn to each of the activity stations.
The first one is a spinner which contains a lizard and baby can spin around using their hands.
The second one is a spinner again but this is higher up, in the design of two rainbows with a ball containing a sun at the top, this is also spun around by baby's hands.
The third one (the main station) has the switches to turn the sound and lights on. It has three animals on the front, a monkey, parrot and elephant. These can all be moved and make sounds when they do. Next to the station on each side there is a flower on a floppy stem, and a spinning dial. The sound affects include a longer melody and around 5 shorter ones, all with jungle animals/sounds featuring at some point!
On the legs at each side there are two adjustable tree leaves which have a parrot and a frog hanging from them. Bobby used to love reaching up to these and pulling the leaves down as they make a clicking noise when moved.
Bobby got a lot of use out of his jumperoo. He started using it at 6 months old when he was just starting to become more aware of his toys and the different things they can do. He really liked spinning the 'spinners' around. It took him longer to realise that moving the animals made a noise and that the seat spun around, but once he did there was no stopping him! This was his favourite toy for about 3 months, he loved sitting in it and bouncing around to the music. This was ideal to put him in whilst doing housework as I knew he wouldn't be able to hurt himself. This really helped to develop the strength in his legs, and when playing on the floor he became much quicker at moving around the room. He also started to recognise when the lights were going to light up and in which sequence by putting hid hands over the next one.
I think £100 is a lot for a bouncer, but this is something that is in my mother in laws loft for baby number 2. It is made of hardwearing material and is easily wiped clean. The seat cover can be washed in the washing machine. After 4/5 months of intensive use it is still in near perfect condition. This is also very safe as the way it is developed it would be almost impossible to knock/pull over, or baby to injure themselves.
I was overall very pleased with this product.
We first started bathing Bobby with a foam bath seat when he was tiny, then upgraded to the Aqua Bambino when he was about 8 weeks old. At around 6 months old he outgrew his Aqua Bambino and we purchased this 'Aqua Pod' from Mothercare for £24.99.
The Aqua Pod is essentially a giant bath mat which covers the entire surface of your bath. It has a seat at one end for smaller children, and would allow an older child to sit at the end without the seat. Which is handy if you have two children to bath!
The design is very bright, it is blue with brightly coloured rubber ducks. There is a duck which gauges the temperature of the water and will change colour to white and say 'too hot' when the water is getting to an unsafe temperature for a child to sit in. Which is very useful if you are anything like me and check the bath temperature about 20 times before putting your child in! The seat is made of two parts, the arched back, which has a slot in handy for removing it from the bath. And a curved t-bar front for baby to hold onto, without being very restricted. I found some bath seats can cover a lot of baby up.
It is very easy to assemble, and has two slots to put the back of the seat in, and another for the front of the seat, which makes it very easy to remove for cleaning. The seat has suction cups on the bottom of it for added safety in the bath. Once the seat is secure in the mat you simply roll it out and stick it to the bottom of the bath. The mat has suction cups running along the entire edge which means once it is in place it is very secure and very safe, this adds extra reassurance for when your child starts wanting to stand in the bath. It also means that you need some serious muscle power to get it out of the bath!!
I really like the Aqua Pod, and now Bobby is big enough to sit and stand in the bath we have removed the seat completely and just use the mat to stop him slipping. When he was younger it meant we were able to wash his hair, and play games with him without having to hold him with one arm. Due to the movement this seat allows it meant Bobby could start to play more in the bath, becoming more confident in water and enjoying bath time more. When we took him on holiday last year he loved the baby pool and was very confident in it, I think using the Aqua Pod made him start to look forward to getting in water and splashing about.
You may think £24.99 is a lot to pay for essentially a bath mat, but this can be used until the child is much older by removing the seat, which has been very cost effective for us.
The mat and seat are of very good quality and are very hardwearing. We have had this for about a year now, using it daily and there is no damage to seat or mat, and even better none of the pattern on the mat has faded, it still looks new! It is wipe clean and can easily be rolled up and put in a suitcase for holidays and travel.
The Aqua Pod gets a big thumbs up from me!
When my son was 6 weeks old he was put into his cot in his own room. He was sleeping okay, but he was a hungry baby and once he'd woken up for a feed he'd want to be clung to me or my partner for the rest of the night. I needed something to help soothe him back to sleep without me being in the room. I was out shopping and came across the 'Slumber Bear'. I had never heard of this before, but after looking at the package I bought it. It was £29.99 from Mamas and Papas.
There are 3 parts to the Slumber Bear, firstly the bear. The bear is a soft plush toy of a bear lying down asleep in a cream romper suit. It has a velcro patch on the back which you lift to put the noise box in. This is of good quality and is a nice bear in itself just as a cuddly toy.
The second part is the blanket which comes with the bear. This is a small cream square blanket made of a very soft material. This is used to capture your scent, then give to the baby on a night so they can smell you still whilst they are asleep. To do this you need to put this blanket on you, usually down your top (how rude! ha) and leave it there for a while so your scent transfers to the fabric. I used to do this last thing on a night, I don't know if this had any effect on Bobby because he didn't really touch the blanket, but is a nice reassurance to have when putting baby to bed.
The last and most important part is the noise box (as I call it, might not be it's proper name!). This is in an egg shape with an orange speaker and buttons on the front. It has a velcro strap on the back meaning you can stuff this in the bear, or attach it to the side of the cot. We used to use it in the bear and put the bear near Bobby. This box has four different sound options, classical nursery rhymes, wave sounds, womb sounds, or an option to record yourself. We opted for the womb sounds. This is an actual recording from inside somone's womb! The idea is to leave the sound box on overnight (check the volume before you set it up for the evening, i've made this mistake before!) either in the bear, or attached to the cot, with your desired sound. When baby moves or makes a noise, the sound will automatically come on for 5 minuted soothing your baby back to sleep.
Does this work?
Yes, it did for us. As we started using it when he was quite young, I think this really worked for him. With baby number 2 I will probably use this from birth so they get used to it and will probably make it more effective. Now this is no miracle cure if your baby is not sleeping, but there were times when the noise of the Slumber Bear would wake me up, and I wouldn't be able to hear Bobby. When I got up to check the first few times, he was drifiting back to sleep. When he got to about 3/4 months old, he was only waking up to be fed and feel the Slumber Bear really helped us with his sleeping patterns. I think hearing a familiar sound gave Bobby the reassurance to go back to sleep by himself.
It's a shame there is nothing to send him back to sleep now when he decides to get up at 4am to play with my phone!
I decided to buy the Blosson Farm Sit Me Up Cosy as one of my friends had told me this really helped her little boy to start to sit unaided. I bought this from ELC for £19.99 (I think it was reduced from £24.99).
This came in a medium box and contained a flower shaped play mat, the hippo/rabbit creature soft part, the 2 inner tubes and 4 small soft toys to stick onto the mat, this included a flower shaped mirror, a chick which makes a chick noise when shaken, a sheep, and a cow.
This is self assembly and is not hard to do, you need to blow up the two inner tubes and put them in the back of the blue creature (let's call him a hippo!). Then you can arrange the hippo in 2 different ways, firstly you can stick the ends together (they have velcro attached) to form a ring, the sort you would sit in on holiday. Place the mat in the middle and let baby lie or sit inside. The second is to place one ring under the other (they have ties on the back to help it stay in place) to form a curved 'seat', place the mat underneath and let baby sit against the hippo helping to build the muscles and strength to sit unaided.
The overall look is very pleasant with pastel colours and the material is very soft and fleecy. These are machine washable which is a bonus when you have a baby with reflux.
The first option of placing the baby is a ring is probabaly more suitable to a younger baby and is an alternative place to put them rather than their crib or play gym, with Bobby he was too big and used to fall in the middle and cry because he was stuck.
Option 2 of having the Sit Me Up as a sort of chair is a good idea in theory. However, with the hippo being so light, when Bobby used to sit against it, it used to push back and result in him falling over. We ended up leaning this against the sofa and putting him in it that way. Even with the further back support he still used to occasionally push himself forwards and fall onto the floor.
The 4 mini toys are a nice touch and were played with longer than the Sit Me Up stayed out. But they were just like any other small soft toy in our house and only looked at for around 5 minutes before being thrown to the side.
After 4 weeks of this is the living room, Bobby had zero interest in it so it was taken down and the mat put on the floor in his bedroom. I think this is probably suited to much smaller babies as they will enjoy the soft textures and will happily sit inside the ring looking at the mirror, but for us it was a bit of a pointless purchase and I will not be buying this when I have another child.
I was first introduced to Fluff by my partner's sister, she's considerably younger than us, and whenever we go to their house she always has some of this in her study. I asked her what it was like and she said, to quote 'amazing'. Being heavily pregnant, and in the Selfridges food hall I saw the 'Fluff' aisle and purchased a 'small' jar of the white Fluff which was £5 for a 7.5oz jar (which is approximately 212g).
These come in a glass jar with a screw top lid, with the white and blue lettering. The jars also have a recipe on the label for 'Never Fail Fudge' and the 'Fluffernutter' which is a peanut butter and Fluff sandwich. This product also comes in Strawberry flavour. This is originally from America and the only place i've seen it for sale is in Selfridges or online.
When I asked my sis in law to be how she ate it she said straight from the jar with a spoon! This was my first taste of the product, armed with a teaspoon I let rip and was quite disappointed with what I discovered. The texture of the 'Fluff' was very very sticky. It tasted like melted marshmallows, but very sweet and sickly marshmallows (like when you've eaten half a bag and can't move!). 3 spoons in I had to give up, I felt so sick and had a coat of sugar on my teeth. Yak.
Rather than throwing it in the bin I kept it in the cupboard to see if I could use it with other things.
On toast - quite nice if a thin layer and with some chocolate spread,
With ice cream - again nice but a small amount,
In cupcakes - just no, makes the mixture too thick and doesn't mix properly.
In hot chocolate - this is what we mainly used the Fluff for. A couple of teaspoons added when the hot chocolate is finished makes a delightful evening treat!
After resigning to use this in the occasional hot chocolate I don't think I would buy this again. It's just too sweet for me, and seems to be popular with a younger market. It's a nice gift for a teenager as a stocking filler, or additional birthday gift. Or an adult with an extreme sweet tooth!
Fluff is gluten free and Kosher,
It is made from Sugar Syrup, Corn Syrup, Dried Egg Whites and Vanilin,
There are 20 calories in 1 tablespoon.
When I found out I was preganant I had no intention of breastfeeding my son, and opted to bottle feed. In hindsight this was a good decision as I was so ill after having my son that it would have been near on impossible to breastfeed him, and for the first few weeks my partner was doing most of his feeds.
When I was pregnant I bought a starter pack of Avent Anti-Colic bottles. During my extensive pregnancy reading, I had read a lot about the dreaded colic and wanted to be prepared incase my son suffered from it. We used these bottles for the first few weeks after Bobby was born. Unfortunately, he suffered from what we though was colic, but actually turned out to be a bad case of reflux. Every time we fed him he was being sick, even up to 3 hours later, a couple of times this caused him to choke so after a trip to hospital they gave us some powder to put in his bottles with his feeds and advised us to try some different bottles. After speaking to a few friends one advised the Mam Ultivent ones and said they had worked wonders with her little girl. So I went on the hunt for them and haven't looked back.
The bottle's are quite expensive compared to some other brands, costing around £4-£5 for one (depending on where you get them, my local place at this point was Sainsbury's). The packet will contain a teat but you can buy the additional teats, in packs of 3 for around £4. They come in a number of bright colours, with different patterns on and we had 2 blue and 2 green ones to start with. They have some lovely pink and purple ones which i'm keeping in mind for baby number 2 if it's a girl!
They break down into 6 pieces, which consist of the lid, teat, the ring to hold the teat in place, the main part of the bottle, the bottom of the bottle, and the seal which goes in the bottom. These are self sterilising, in that you can put the teat inside the bottle, add a small amount of water (measurements are on the lid), and put them in the microwave, this saves a lot of time rather than waiting for the steriliser to finish and cool. You can also use them in the steriliser, I did this a couple of times a week.
The bottle has a screw off bottom which has tiny holes around the base, there is a white plastic seal to put on the inside of the bottle to stop the milk leaking out. These holes (the vent), allow the pressure to balance in the bottle, meaning there is less air and bubbles (which causes colic) in the milk. The bottle does occasionally let out a tiny trickle of milk but the seal really worked.
These bottles have silk teats, which is supposed to help with the transitition from breast feeding, but as Bobby was only bottle fed I cannot comment if this worked.
We bought 4 bottles and these have lasted until we no longer use bottles with our son.
Does it work?
Yes! It really really does. I started using these bottles and tilting his matress slightly, so there was less chance of choking when he went to sleep. (A tip from my midwife which really worked). After using these bottles for a couple of weeks we didn't need to add the powder in his bottles to help with his reflux. I was pleased about this as he'd already had to have a strong course of medication when he was born and didn't want him to be exposed to medicines for his whole baby life. He was still sick, but nowhere near as much as he used to be, and not 2/3 hours after he had been fed. I was happy putting him to sleep and was able to sleep better as I wasn't worried about him choking in the night on his sick.
His reflux only went away fully when he started eating solid food, which was 3 and a half months - and yes i've had many a criticism and an argument with my Health Visitor about starting him so early but it's what worked for us.
When I have another baby these will be the bottles I use from birth, although slightly more expensive the benefit it brought to us and my son outweighs any cost.
When buying shower gel i'm not usually too bothered about which brand/type I use. As long as it does the job, smells nice, and is quite cheap then it's a winner for me. However, as I have mentioned before, my partner suffers from bouts of very bad ezcema. He has a lot of food allergies and also has a wheat intolerance, so he replaces a lot of the benefits he would get from eating these food with supplements. This combined with a week of high intensity training in the gym (he runs a lot of marathons) can mean he goes through a phrase of suffering badly with ezcema and skin irritation. When this happens he uses minimal washing powder, very basic shower gels and a lot of sudacrem!
When I was out shopping (and he was going through a phase of this), I needed to pick up some shower gel for us as a family. I was looking originally at the Sanex range, but then saw this was on offer in Boots, 2 for £2, so I picked a couple of bottles up.
I really like Simple face products for when i'm going through a bad skin period so was already a fan of their brand. The shower gel itself comes in a clear bottle, so you can see how much is left. It is a light blue colour and has a slight smell of mint. The gel lathers nicely, and does the job. As it is for sensitive skin users I can understand that they wouldn't want the scent to be too strong, but for an 'invigorating' shower gel I don't feel it was minty enough. Due to this I found myself using a lot of the product to feel really clean. For an 'invigorating' shower gel I want the tingly sensation you get with the Original Source ones.
It didn't irritate my partner's skin further, which is a bonus, but even he commented that it didn't smell very strong, and felt because of this he wasn't as clean. But, this may due to our preferences of strong smelling products!
All in all it's an ok product, if you have sensitive skin they it won't irritate it further. But for an invigorating shower gel, it sadly lacked some oomph for me.
After the success of Primark since it expanded into nearly every city in the UK (probably due to this lovely recession). They have increased the items they sell and have introduced a beauty range, including make up and accessories. Whilst browsing the beauty range, with a basket full of shoes and tops, I noticed these cotton wool pads. At 160 pads for £1 I put a couple into my basket.
I only use cotton wool pads for nail polish removal, and occasionally if i'm using a different cleanser or toner on my face.
These cotton pads come in two seperate packets of 80. Each individual pad is white, about 8cm in width with textured sides. I never have known why they make cotton pads textured. It must be to make removal of make up and nail polish easier.
The absorbancy of this cotton pad is no worse than any other I have used previously (I usually use Boots own brand). I used one to remove my nail polish, and to do both hands it took 4 pads, which is no different from usual.
When using this with my toner the only difference I noticed is that they felt quite 'scratchy' on my face, rather than soft like the Boots ones do. This wasn't very unpleasant just not as soft as my usual brand.
I have had the packets for about 6 months now, and use them at least twice a week for my face and nails.
I will be buying these again as the value for money is amazing. You may prefer softer ones if you are using them on your face, but as I primarily use them for nail polish removal these are ideal for me.
I love house music, I worked in clubs when I was in my student days and after seeing various house DJ's this has become the music I listen to most. A few years ago I remember hearing the song 'One' by Swedish House Mafia and instantly loved the style, and that it was completely different to any other house music on the market. Since then I have followed their music and saw them in Ibiza in summer.
Swedish House Mafia (SHM) is a group of 3 Swedish DJ's; Axwell, Sebastian Ingrosso, and Steve Angello. These are three very successful DJ's who have had a number of records out over the years, and after collaberating on a number of records, including 'Leave The World Behind' they formed SHM. After a successful album in 'Until One', they announced they would be seperating to concentrate on their individual careers and released 'Until Now'. They are currently in the middle of their last tour aptly named 'One Last Tour'. I really like them as a group collectively, as think their style of music is very unique. I also like them as individual DJ's and have seen Axwell and Steve Angello in the past.
Onto the album; Until Now is a collection of SHM songs, and includes tracks they have worked on and tracks by artists they have worked with/work with.
I downloaded this from iTunes for £7.99 and this includes the 'Antidote' and 'Save the World' videos.
1. Until Now (Continuous DJ Mix) - This is the entire album mixed by SHM as if you were seeing them live (I actually think this is the set list I saw in Ibiza). I put this on when i'm getting ready to go out or want to power through my cleaning, luckily my little boy seems to love SHM and dances along.
2. SHM - Greyhound - Greyhound was released in summer this year and is a really uplifting, full on track. I can still listen to this on repeat now and not get bored. This track will definitely get you moving.
3. Hard Rock Sofa & Swanky Tunes - Here We Go - This is another very uptempo track that will get you dancing around.
4. Ivan Gough & Feenixpawl - In My Mind (Axwell Mix) - The tempo slightly slows down for this track, the female vocals play over a more melodic track which builds into a big beat you want to dance to. You may also recognise the words 'In My Mind, your in my heart'
5. Sebastian Ingrosso & Alesso - Calling (Lose My Mind) - This is one of the more commercial tracks, which you are likely to have heard on the radio as it was played a lot over summer. This time a male vocalist over a more, dare I say 'poppy' track. This is very uplifting, I can't help but sing along.
6. Nari & Milani - Atom - Atom gets more into the heavier side of house with a deep repetitive beat, the type your Gran may go 'What on earth is this?' to. Not one for people who prefer the more commercial/pop side to SHM.
7. Axwell, Laidback Luke, Steve Angello, and Sebastian Ingrosso - Leave the World Behind - This is one of the first tracks I heard where all 3 dj's collaborated. This is a big song, which really builds up. Again, a female vocalist on this track which reminds me of some of the vocalists on 90's dance songs.
8. SHM & Knife Party - Antidote (Radio Edit) - This is another song which is very popular and has had a lot of radio air time. I am really lost at how to describe this song as I have not heard anything like it before. It has an almost robotic sound to the vocals, but is an uptempo song with a very big bassline (give it a listen to see what I mean!).
9. Dirty South & Those Usual Suspects - Walking Alone - Another male vocalist, less uptempo than some of the songs, but with a very catchy tune.
10. SHM & Tinie Tempah - Miami 2 Ibiza - Another popular track, this is also featured on Tinie Tempah's album. The lyrics to this had everybody singing (or maybe rapping) along in Ibiza. A great song to dance to.
11. Michael Calfan - Resurrection (Axwell Remix) - This is the sort of track you would expect from Axwell, a classic house track, with a repeated uptempo tune, and no lyrics.
12. Coldplay - Paradise - I'm not 100% sure why this song is on this album as this is the original version and not a remix, however this is a big song which fits in well.
13. Miike Snow - The Wave (Thomas Gold Remix) - This song is a LOT like one of The Wanted's songs (Chasing the Sun, correct me if i'm wrong!), the tune is almost identical, but a good uplifting 'summery' song.
14. Steve Aoki & Wynter Gordon - Ladi Dadi (Tommy Trash Remix) - This has a very distinctive sound to it, more electronic house than any of the other tracks on the album. With the lyrics and the beat this makes a very catchy number and is one of my favourites.
15. Thomas Gold - Sing2Me - This song starts as quite quiet and atmospheric and builds up slightly, sounding like a 90's dance song. This has a female vocalist present on the track but she doesn't actually sing.
16. Red Carpet - Alright - You will definitely recognise the words to this song 'The sun is going to keep on shining...', the song has been revamped with a bigger beat, a bigger build up and a bigger drop.
17. Pendulum - The Island (Steve Angello, AN21 & Max Vangeli Remix) - This is different to the Pendulum songs I have heard in the past. It takes a while to get into it, then has a simple but catchy electronic beat.
18. Steve Angello & Third Party - Lights - A catchy uptempo tune.
19. Alesso - Raise Your Head - I was unsure of this track at first, and thought it sounded more like something that would be suited to 'Bowser's castle' level on Super Mario Bros! But the more I listen to it the more I like it. It's a little bit different, a bit electronic, with the almost zombie like 'Everybody Raise You Head' repeated throughout, but it really gets me dancing around now.
20. Sandro Silva & Quintino - Epic - Quintino is a DJ and Producer from The Netherlands, who I happened to see DJ twice in Ibiza in summer (he was on the table next to ours before he DJ'd at Cafe Mambo - I know i'm showing off now!). After hearing his amazing sets I did a bit of research and had actually already downloaded this track before I bought the album. He, to me, is an advocate of proper progressive house, with build ups and big basslines. This song does not fail to deliver, and is one of the what I call 'darker' (doesn't suit everyone) tracks on the album.
21. Hardwell - Three Triangles - This is a mixture of electronic, bassy beats and vocals. A good overall track but nothing special.
22. Arty, Matisse & Sadko - Trio - This is another classic progressive house track. Takes a while to get into but is still an uplifiting song.
23. Adrian Lux - Teenage Crime - Another favourite of mine from the album. This track is very different to the other songs, and has a very mellow beat with almost haunting song lyrics.
24. Sebastian Ingrosso & Tommy Trash - Reload - This has a very catchy repetitive tune which plays throughout the track. I do like this though and is a good one to dance to.
25. Usher - Euphoria (SHM Remix) - This is Usher's track remixed by SHM. This is quite melodic and a 'quieter' track but still with a beat to it.
26. SHM - Don't You Worry Child - This track is one of the more commercial and more popular songs on the album. It is an uplifting and uptempo, with a male vocalist it is one to sing along to.
27. M-3ox - Beating of My Heart - This is a song with lots of quiet parts, lots of build ups and lots of big drops. Not my favourite but I can happliy put this on and leave it playing.
28. The Temper Track - Sweet Disposition - Again, i'm unsure why this is on the album, but is a classic uptempo song which most people will know.
29. Coldplay - Every Teardrop Is a Waterfall (Coldplay vs SHM) - I am not a big fan of Coldplay, but I really like this song, very upbeat and uplifting. Some remixes of songs can ruin the song in my opinion, but this one is very good.
30. Florence + The Machine - You Got The Love (Mark Knight Remix) - Simple. Florence Remixed. This is quite an electronic remix which i'm not a big fan of.
31. SHM - One (Radio Edit) - This was the first track released as SHM, and is one which really defines their style.
32. Axwell - Heart is King -This is a good track by Axwell, has the usual makings of a house track and will make you dance, the only negative is the end of the track is a heart beating, which can be hard to listen to if wearing headphones, it made my ears hurt!
33. SHM - Save the World (Knife Party Remix) - Think Antidote mixed with Save the World. The beginning starts pretty much the same as the radio edit, but a Knife Party's edgy style comes through at the chorus.
34. SHM - Save the World - This is one of their latest releases and again is one of the more commercial/poppy songs, with a male vocalist
35. Ferry Corsten - Punk (Arty Rock-n-Roller Remix) - I like this song, it is very 80's electronic sounding. If you've listened to any of Ferry Corsten's tracks before it definitely has his style.
This is my first music review so I hope you can understand what I mean when describing tracks.
I love this album, and for the content £7.99 is such a good price. A lot of people will enjoy this even if you are not a usual fan of dance/house music. My dad has this and likes to listen to it when he's cooking! If you think it's not for you give it a try you may surprise yourself. A lot of the songs are really uplifting, and put me in a good mood for the day.
It is a real shame to me that SHM have no plans to release any more songs collectively, but I will still follow their careers seperately, and am really glad I got to see them this summer.