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lolly23

lolly23
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Member since: 16.11.2008

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    • BT Home Hub 2.0 / Wireless LAN / 44 Readings / 40 Ratings
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      18.09.2011 11:44
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      Not bad.

      I have had BT broadband (along with the phone and TV) for around 18 months now. When I first unpacked the BT 2.0 Home Hub I remember being quite impressed and thinking that it looked like a work of art compared to the boring little rectangular box I had previously with Sky.
      The Home Hub is jet black and very glossy, it is quite an unusual shape compared to most and although I now keep it in a closed cabinet (I hate clutter!), it is a router that I wouldn't mind being on display as it doesn't look particularly ugly, as most other routers tend to!


      The home hub has five lights down the right hand side of the box with the following text underneath each light: Power, Broadband, Wireless, Phone, Upgrading. I think that they are pretty self-explanatory! The lights are blue and are set inside the box, shining through the plastic casing when lit, this adds to the sleek look and gives it a minimalist appearance. There are three buttons down the side of the box that are used when setting, and resetting, the hub: Wireless Association, Find handset, and Reset.


      Setting the home hub up is a simple process. I have found that BT tend to give simple, yet informative manuals with both pictures and text. They also give the option of a helpline, and a help page on their website (although you would be unable to access this if you were having trouble setting up your hub!).
      I am in no way technologically minded, but I found setting up the hub and my internet connection relatively easy and did not need the additional help that was offered.


      Once set up, the front lights illuminate one by one, bar the 'upgrading light' which will only illuminate once in a blue moon! I can't recall ever seeing this light illuminated, however I don't tend to spend a lot of time gazing at my home hub so couldn't say how often the box upgrades.
      I find having the wording underneath each light helps me identify the problem if something goes wrong. I remember my last box having lots of lights, but I never knew what each light meant so I never really knew where to start if something went wrong.


      I find that the home hub isn't very reliable and I have to reset it at least once a week. I don't know if this is something to do with my connection or my hub (as I said, not very technologically minded!), but I find that my internet suddenly stops working and I have to press the reset button on the hub and wait for it to start up (usually around a minute). Once it has reset itself, I can usually get back online straight away. Other than this, the hub had lasted me well. I've had it 18 months now and it is still going strong.


      Overall, I am happy with my home hub - it is easy to set up, simple to use, and looks better than most other hubs.

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        17.09.2011 20:07
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        The Baby Jogger City Mini is a lightweight stroller style pushchair that is suitable from birth, it retails at around £199.

        I have to admit that the only reason I chose the City Mini is because it was the only one (Barring the Petite Star Zia) that would actually fit in the boot of my car! I quickly found out that most pushchairs are really bulky, even when folded. The City Mini is extremely well designed and folds down to a tiny 77 x 52 x 16 cm, all wheels are also removable to make it suitable for even the smallest of boots. It boasts Patented Quick-Fold Technology, meaning that you can fold the pushchair with the simple pull of a handle, this is very easy to do and can be done single handed. The pushchair is also easy to reassemble, again this can be done single handed.

        Once assembled (easily done in less than 5 minutes, with a very helpful manual), it is a dream to use. It weighs 7.8kg so it is pretty light and therefore not too difficult to move around. Pushing is a dream, it glides easily over most surfaces - I've used it on and off road, on many uneven surfaces, and it has always been an easy ride. The only issue I have is that the back wheels are fixed, which sometimes makes turning a struggle. The front swivel wheel helps, but I find that as the pushchair is so light, it's easier to just pull the pushchair up by the handle to reposition it when turning tight corners, such as in small shops.

        The thing I love about this pushchair is the multi position hood. There are three sections, as you can see from the picture and you can push the hood right back or have one, two, or all three sections open. I tend to have two sections open when my son is awake and upright, and lower it to three when he is asleep or it is particularly windy as it is quite low down so it gives him more protection and privacy. The second and third section of the hood have clear viewing windows so you can check on your little one, the windows can be covered when not in use, or when you are using the other one, so they don't look 'out of place'.

        The pushchair has the standard 5 point safety harness, with adjustable height so will always be a comfortable and secure fit. The seat reclines right back, it has a thick clip that you use to secure it wherever you want it so you can have it however you want rather than in set positions. The handle bar is fixed at 107 cm, which I find a comfortable height. I'm quite tall so find some pushchair handle bars give me back ache, but this one is just right. It is also set back from the pushchair so you have plenty of leg room.

        The shopping basket is quite small, but it will hold a couple of bags of shopping. The main problem with the shopping basket is that it doesn't open for easy access so there you can't always get bulky things in there, I often find that I have to take things out of the shopping bag to be able to get it in, I then have to refill the bag once it's in the shopping basket, which can sometimes be quite irritating! This, along with the fixed wheels are only minor irritations though, and the pushchair is otherwise perfect so I think the Baby Jogger City Mini still deserves a five star rating!

        Here is a link to the one I bought, it has lots of pictures so you can get a real feel for the pushchair... http://direct.tesco.com/q/R.208-3470.aspx

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        • Flymo Multimo 340XC / Lawn Mower / 68 Readings / 66 Ratings
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          25.11.2010 20:53
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          Recommended, unless you have a sloped lawn that is!

          I bought this lawn mower around a year and a half ago, it cost £99 (or thereabouts) and came with a free strimmer, which I didn't think was such a bad price. I have sometimes gone for cheaper models but they haven't always lasted too long and they weren't too much cheaper (if you factor in the strimmer, anyway!), so I figured that this was a pretty good buy. Being Flymo, I was confident that this would work well, and last a decent amount of time.

          It comes in a huge box, and in various pieces. I remember that I found the manual a little difficult to understand, luckily a friend turned up and offered to give me a hand! We worked it out and began putting the pieces together. The parts were quite stiff and you really have to push them to go on, i felt quite uncomfortable using such force as I didn't want to risk snapping the plastic. Luckily all went well, and after twenty or so minutes my lawn mower was complete and ready to go!

          The lawn mower is quite small, and at 13.5 KG isn't too heavy; it could be lighter, but as it is, it isn't uncomfortable to carry. There is a large, chunky handle on top of the machine which makes it easy to carry from lawn to lawn. The handles also fold down which makes storage easy, the grass box is of a standard size, it is a similar size to the lawn mower, and easily attaches to (and detatches from) the lawn mower. The mower has a 12m cable, which is a decent length, and is luckily just long enough for all of my gardens.

          The mower has a 1500W motor, I'm not sure if that is good or not, but I find that it is powerful enough to mow my lawn with ease. The mower glides over the lawn easily; my back and side gardens are quite bumpy in places, but the Multimo easily glides over the bumps.

          I can be lazy sometimes with mowing my lawn (I really, really hate doing it!), so sometimes the grass is 3-4 inches long by the time I get around to it. Even with grass this length, the mower glides over easily and cuts the grass evenly.

          My front lawn has a large steep slope that can be quite difficult to mow; it is not possible to mow across it so it has to be mowed up/down it; this is difficult to do with this mower. I stand at the top of the slope and push down as it isn't possible to do it uphill; I find that the grass box continually falls off when I get to the bottom of the slope. The weight of the mower also gives me backache by the time I have finished; although I have had a bit of a dodgy back since the birth of my son, so this may not be a problem for other people. Had I considered this when buying, I would probably have gone for a hover mower, which would have made the job a lot easier.

          Other than this, I am pretty happy with my lawn mower. It cuts well, is reasonably small and compact, is easy to transport and store, and is powerful enough to cut even the bumpiest of lawns. I wouldn't recommend the lawn mower for anyone with a large slope such as mine, although for 'normal' lawns, this mower is a good option!

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            25.11.2010 13:44
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            I bought my Wii Balance Board a few years ago in a set with the Wii Fit game, I think it cost around £70, which was pretty standard at the time. You can buy them a little cheaper now, and the price varies more so it is worth shopping around for one. You can probably get one for £50 now, maybe even cheaper on sites such as eBay.

            They can be bought alone, or with Wii Fit/Wii Fit Plus; I would recommend going for one with the game as it is a great game, and really utilises the board. The board is mainly intended for use with Wii Fit although a lot of games now have options to use the board to enhance gameplay.

            Setting up the board is done in exactly the same way as you set up the Wiimotes, you do this by pressing the small red button underneath the battery cover, and the matching button on the Wii console. Once done, the balance board will be permanently connected, even when turning the machine off, or taking out and replacing the batteries.
            The balance board requires four AA batteries, I have found that batteries (even cheap ones) last a really long time in the board. As mentioned, I've had my board for a few years now, and have only had to replace the batteries once!

            If bought with the Wii Fit game you can use the balance board as a set of scales. You can chart your weight and use it as motivation for weight loss. When telling you your weight, your Mii will be on screen, the Mii will start of really, really thin and gradually grow outwards. If you are overweight, as I currently am, your Mii will grow quite big and will look really dumpy - it's awful, lol!

            If you pick anything up over 3kg then the board will notice and will tell you how much it weighs (this is handy if you have small children or pets and want to know the weight).
            When I first bought it, I did experiment with it to see how accurate it actually is. First I weighed my bread maker as I know how heavy it is, then I realised that I actually had some weights so took them on. Each time the Balance Board was accurate to within a pound of the actual weight - quite impressive.

            I find that the board is a useful addition to some games and really does enhance gameplay, but it is not very useful on others. On some games it seems that the balance board has only been introduced in an attempt to increase interest in the game (i.e sales of the game!), the board doesn't benefit it at all and in some cases, even detracts from it.
            One example is EA Sports Active, while this is already an excellent fitness game (the best, in my opinion), they somehow felt the need to add balance board exercises, the exercises are exactly the same as some of the other exercises but you have to stand still to do them. Yes, the board checks your balance while you do it, but for workout exercises like this, who cares about balance? I would rather jump around when playing the games as it will give a better workout (which is the reason that I am using the game in the first place!) than stand as still as I can in the hope that a red dot doesn't leave a circle!

            Saying this, the board is ideal for performing certain exercises; yoga is a perfect example. This type of exercise is all about balance, and the Balance Board really helps you to improve your moves. It will guide you through the poses and will show up exactly where your weight should be placed when in position, it will show you exactly how your weight is distributed, and how it SHOULD be distributed, thus perfecting your technique, which will give you a more effective workout.
            I find that the balance board is very responsive and even the slightest change in weight distribution will be recorded, this is most apparent in games such as this where you make slow, careful movements.

            So, all in all I am happy with the balance board; it is a great addition to many games, is very accurate in responsive, and can even be used as weighing scales!

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            25.11.2010 12:31
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            I bought Wii Fit Plus over a year ago now, and have used it on a regular basis. I already had a balance board (a requirement for the game) as I bought Wii Fit a few years ago, but fancied upgrading it as I was interested in seeing the new additions to the game.

            I am glad that I did.

            I bought both games more to play on than for the fitness aspect. I would have been disappointed if I had bought it to get myself fit. The majority of the games are used in conjunction with the Wii Balance Board, which is unable to cope with forceful movements. You can walk on the spot and lean to one side, but you can't run or jump on it. This limits the extent to which you can exercise with the game.

            It does have jogging games, which are used without the balance board, although (if I remember correctly), this is the only high energy exercise. Hula hooping is a good workout though; you stand on the board and spin your hips as fast as you can, to get a high score. It only lasts a minute or two, but if you do it a couple of times, you really can feel it!

            There are yoga and 'muscle workouts' which are stretching exercises. These are quite effective as the balance board can detect where you are placing you weight, and can show you exactly how your weight moves when performing the exercises. It does this with the use of a small red dot that moves when you do. The dot will show if you are wobbly with your movements, or if you are just placing too much weight on one side of your body. It will then advise you on ways to improve your posture and/or movement.

            There are also many 'mini games'; one of my favourites is the snowball fight game! You hide behind a board, then quickly lean over to each side to throw snowballs at people. Some of the people who come out are your friends/family members (well, their Miis anyway); my son finds it hilarious when I hit his Mii in the face with a snowball, lol!

            Another example is an obstacle course, where you have to walk through the game avoiding objects and jumping over ledges; now when I say jump, you can't actually jump (the game will freeze if you do!), you squat down and spring up again, this will make your Mii jump over things.

            At the end of every game, your score is shown on a leader board, and you are told how many calories you have burned doing it. This is a nice feature, although as you hardly do anything, you hardly burn any calories.

            It works out your carorie expenditure by weighing you on the board, you then add details such as height, gender, age. You can weigh yourself as much as you like and can set yourself gaols for weight loss. The balance board is pretty accurate with weight, just like weighing scales. If you pick anything up over 3kg then the board will notice and will tell you how much it weighs (this is handy if you have small children or pets and want to know the weight).

            I experimented with this to see how accurate it actually is. First I weighed my breadmaker as I know how heavy it is, then I realised that I actually had some weights so took them on. Each time the Balance Board was accurate to within a pound of the actual weight - quite impressive.

            I would not recommend Wii Fit Plus for small children though as it is too difficult for very small children to play. My son is six and still struggles with the balance games; he cannot get the grasp of balancing weight rather than just moving his body to one side. He also finds it hard to tilt his hips enough for the hula hoop game as the board is expecting someone almost twice as tall as him to be playing so his movements aren't big enough to be registered. He is starting to get the hang of it now, but it was impossible up until the age of five as he was just too small to be able to complete the activities.

            His favourite game is the Kung-Fu game, as the board accurately picks up his movements. In this game your Mii stands at the front of four other Miis who do kung-fu poses to the sound of music, when it's your Mii's turn, you must do the same, you are rated on your accuracy and timing.

            Overall, I would recommend Wii Fit Plus. It is fun and great for improving balance. It is excellent for yoga and I would encourage all yoga fans to buy one. If you want it for fitness though I would stick to either Wii Sports or EA sports Active (the better of the two) as you don't actually do enough to really burn calories/work your muscles/lose weight.

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              24.11.2010 22:44
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              The Wii has revolutionised gaming. It has brought a whole new level to game play; instead of simply sitting on your sofa, clicking buttons and watching the game character have all the fun, you can be the character, and be part of the game... and have the fun!

              All of this takes place thanks to the Wiimote (or Wii Remote, for those not in the know! Lol). The Wiimote's every move is monitored on a small sensor panel that is placed either above or below your television screen. This means that YOUR every move is picked up and replicated in the game.

              A Wiimote is provided with the Wii console, although extras and/or replacements are widely available, ranging in price from £15-25. There are non-Nintendo Wiimotes available, although reviews are mixed and prices aren't much lower, so I don't know if they're a good buy.

              The Wiimotes are 15 x 3.5 x 3 cm, and are of an average weight for a remote. They come with a long wrist strap and a sliding plastic clip to secure, the design of the clip means that it is suitable for all. This is a very important addition to the Wiimote as it can easily slip from the hand otherwise, not only risking damage to the controller, but to your TV, console, or anything else within throwing distance!

              I have dropped our remotes a couple of times, and my son has hit the TV with them more times than I can remember, but luckily they have all survived. One throw even resulted in a huge crack along the controller, yet it still works perfectly; I believe that they are pretty sturdy devices, although I would still advise you to wear the wrist strap, as it is not just the Wiimote that could get damaged.

              The controller is wireless and is easily connected to the console with the click of two buttons; One on the Wiimote (located under the battery cover) and one on the console. Once connected, the Wiimote will always work with the console, even when the batteries have been removed and replaced.

              It is a simple device that is very easy to master; there are very few buttons and all are widely spaced so there is no risk of pressing the wrong one, which can be an issue for those with clumsy and/or chunky fingers!

              I find that the remote is very responsive, and is usually accurate in play. There are times when the remote doesn't recognise certain movements or actions, although I have noticed that they tend to be on the same few games, this makes me think that the problem is with the games, rather than the Wiimote.

              All in all, I am very happy with the Wiimote. It works well, responds well, and is very hardwearing. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it, although obviously it is of no use for someone who doesn't own a Wii!

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                23.11.2010 21:26
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                Avon Illuminating Face Pearls, 22g - £8.50.

                I bought Avon's face pearls just over a year ago after trying to find a cheaper alternative to my usual brand, No 7's Sunkissed bronzing pearls. At £5 (with a free brush!), Avon's Pearls were half the price, but would that mean that they would work half as well?

                As it was autumn at the time of purchase, I thought that Avon's Illuminating pearls would probably be a more suitable choice as they would (hopefully!) give my face a healthy glow, rather than adding colour, which I don't tend to do as much in winter. My skin can look dull and tired sometimes so I hoped that these would give my skin a bit of a lift, and make me look a little more refreshed.

                The Pearls come in a black circular tub with a screw top lid. There is a thick circular sponge inside to stop the pearls moving (and therefore crumbling). There are various coloured balls inside in beige, brown and bronze tones. They are very similar to most bronzing pearls although the colours are more muted and give a really subtle effect.

                To use the pearls, you will need a large make-up brush. I tend to go for a thicker one as I find that you don't need to make as many strokes, thus giving a more natural effect. You should swirl the brush around over the pearls for a few seconds then apply; I find it better to tap the side of the brush on something, usually the side of the sink as I apply in the bathroom, as this takes any excess off so you don't end up looking too 'obvious'. You then lightly brush it over any areas that need it such as cheeks and brow.

                The effect is subtle, so subtle in fact that you need to re-apply a couple of times to see any effect. It does take up precious time in a morning to do, but I don't mind this too much as it means that there is little chance of overdoing it. I find that the effect is brighter, healthier looking skin, it gives my skin a hint of colour and I actually think that I look ill without it now!

                Now 22g of pearls don't sound like much, but as you only use the smallest amount each time they do last quite a while. As I said, I bought mine over a year ago, and have used it quite regularly since, I would say that there is around 25% left - which makes this product a complete bargain! The Pearls are also good for 24 months after opening so I will have plenty of time to use the remainder of my pot.

                All in all... A good product! I am happy with the effects, and very happy with the price. I will still stick to my bronzer in summer, but this is lovely for giving a hint of colour in winter.

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                21.11.2010 23:30
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                I have been a student for two years now and until now have managed to get away without buying a printer by using on-site facilities. Due to a change in circumstances I have now enrolled at the Open University, hence the need for a decent printer. As I will be using it a lot, I decided that I would go for a more expensive and (hopefully!) more reliable machine.

                I don't really like printers, and really begrudged buying one as every one that I have owned has been so unpredictable and temperamental that I end up throwing it away! Usually due to constant 'please load the paper into the tray' messages... when there is plenty of paper already in the bloomin' tray!!! Either that or there is a 'paper jam', when there is no paper in the machine! I just can't win.

                I think those days are over...

                The HP Photosmart Plus All in One printer is the most reliable printer that I have ever come across. It is so simple and easy to use, yet has so many amazing features.

                My favourite features...

                Touch screen - Yes, my printer has a touch screen, how fancy! It has a large display which makes choosing functions simple, it also displays computer generated videos that show you exactly how to set up and use the printer. This is a great feature and is really handy for people like me who sometimes struggle to follow manuals.

                Email access - Yes, my printer also has its own email address. As long as the printer is turned on, you can email any attachments (documents, or photos) and it will print it out for you within a few seconds. It will also recognise what you are sending it - i.e. it will print photos out on photo paper, and documents on standard A4 paper.

                Wireless - Self explanatory, but is a really nice feature for those with laptops such as myself who may not have a set 'computer area'. I have mine in a corner in my bedroom and can order a print out from anywhere in the house.

                Internet access - My printer can access the internet on its own! It has a few apps stored and you can go online and print out games, calendars, children's activities, graph paper, etc. There is also a Snapfish App so you can upload, share and print your photos.

                As mentioned, it is really easy to set up the printer as the screen shows you step by step videos, the whole process takes around 15 minutes and is not complicated at all. If you are unsure of anything, you can always view the video again before moving on to the next step. Connecting to the computer is just as easy, as it is wireless there is no actual 'connecting' involved, you can connect if you like but the wire isn't included, so I haven't done this and can't comment on it. All you have to do is insert the CD into your PC and follow the steps on screen, this takes 2-3 minutes and then you are ready to print!

                Of course, being an all in one printer it is also a copier and scanner. You can also print photos; I have used all of the printer's features and am happy with almost every aspect. My only issue is with the scanner/copier; I've found that the lid is not tight fitting, this means that there are sometimes shadows on the print outs. This is not a huge issue and I find that if I hold the top lightly while scanning it will come out OK.

                As for photos; I am amazed by the quality of the prints, I have used this feature a lot and have printed perfect, glossy pictures every time. The photos are printed right up to the edges as well so they are exactly like the photos that you would order form a shop.

                Every day use is great; I've printed many things on this printer, and each time the paper has loaded perfectly, printed quickly, and the quality has always been perfect. The ink also dries very fast, even on the photos. I have picked photos up straight after printing and they have been completely dry with no transfer to my fingers.

                The printer takes five ink cartridges; black, plus four colours. This means that you can replace only the colour that you need, and not the whole thing. This is great if you tend to print a lot of things in the same colour. I find that my blue ink runs out quicker than other colours, for example. I do believe that this saves money in the long run. Black cartridges can be bought for around £10 and coloured ones cost around £6, although they can be found cheaper online. The printer itself costs around £99, and is widely available, do shop around though as it may be available cheaper than this.

                I am very happy with my printer; it is smart yet simple and works perfectly every time. I couldn't ask for more, and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it.

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                • Stugeron / Health Product / 32 Readings / 31 Ratings
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                  20.11.2010 15:28
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                  I have always bought Traveleeze travel sickness tablets as they are the only brand that I've found that young children can take; as my son is now six, I don't have to worry about this as much and can buy other brands when Traveleeze aren't available.

                  Stugeron 15 is the brand that my mother usually goes for so I was happy to try them and was confident that they would work.

                  Stugeron 15 come in packs of 15 and cost around £2.79. I did wonder if the '15' was the number of tablets, although reading the box, I am informed that they contain 15 mg of Cinnarizine (which is a more likely explanation!). I should probably mention that they also contain Lactose Monohydrate and Sucrose.

                  You should take them as follows:

                  Adults, and children 12 and over - 2 tablets, two hours before travelling. One further tablet every eight hours as required.
                  Children aged 5-12 years - one tablet, two hours before travelling. Half a tablet every eight hours as required.

                  I believe that this is pretty standard for travel sickness tablets, although this does limit you in their use; my usual brand can be taken anytime from the night before, right up until you leave, which is great for people like me who can be forgetful (especially when rushing around trying to pack for a holiday!).

                  I have used them twice so far, once exactly two hours before (I set myself an alarm to remember!), and once an hour before travel. I can't say that I noticed a difference between them and they were no less effective when taking them late.

                  My first trip was around two hours, and my second was almost three (both by car). I felt absolutely fine throughout, this is something that wouldn't be possible without the aid of tablets such as these so I can confidently say that they do what they are supposed to do.

                  Stugeron 15 are a little cheaper than my usual brand, and work just as well so I am happy to have them on hand for when travelling. I wouldn't buy them exclusively though as I don't like the fact that you are tied down by taking them at a set time, however flexible this time may be.... 4 stars.

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                    19.11.2010 23:14
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                    For around a year now, I've been using Boots' leave in conditioner spray as it is quick, easy, and works for my hair (and I'm pretty lazy too, so love not having to rinse my hair after applying!). It doesn't soften my hair as much as 'normal' conditioners though so every now and again I will use Pantene Sheer Volume.

                    I have used this conditioner on and off of a while now and have always been very happy with the results. I've tried a fair few conditioners in my time, and have to say that this is one of my favourites; It can also be found in some pound shops so is a complete bargain.

                    The conditioner itself doesn't look particularly special; it is quite a plain looking product and is of an average consistency. Massaging it into hair, it doesn't feel as soft as some other brands and takes a while to massage thoroughly into hair; I tend to apply it, and then sit back for a while to give it time to work. It can be rinsed immediately and is still effective although I like to think that leaving it a little longer benefits my hair more, I can't honestly say whether this is true or not though.

                    Rinsing it out is simple, by this time my hair does feel softer and silkier so I can glide my fingers through my hair easily and rinse thoroughly without catching or tangling. I tend to half dry my hair with a towel then tie it back to dry naturally. Although my hair is quite long, I find that I can easily brush through it and can tie it back without creating lugs or tangles.

                    When dry, my hair feels lovely and soft; although not too soft that it is difficult to manage. With some conditioners I find that my hair is too soft and I have to use extra products to 'rough it up' a little before being able to style it. This is not the case with Pantene Sheer Volume, It gets the balance just right and it is both soft and manageable.
                    The conditioner does seem to add body to my hair so I do agree that my hair feels fuller and has more volume to it; it is not a huge difference, although it is quite apparent, to me at least!

                    Yes, there are probably some 'miracle' conditioners that cost a small fortune that are of more benefit to the hair ('restoring' or 'repairing' it, or something similar), but I find that this one works well, and is the best one that I have found so far. With the results that I see, and the amazing price to boot, I will not be searching for any other conditioner as I am completely satisfied with this product. I would highly recommend it and would not hesitate to award it... 5 stars!

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                      19.11.2010 22:20
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                      Recommended!

                      Euro Shopper energy drinks can be bought in 250ml cans for 35p, they have been this price for a good few years now and I'm quite surprised that the price hasn't increased yet. I first encountered Euro Shopper products when they began selling them at the village shop that I used to work in; they are now widely available and seem to be the local shopkeepers' answer to Tesco's Value range, or Sainsburys' Basics range.
                      Euro Shopper sell everything from Coffee to washing powder; I've tried many products from the range and most of them are quite good quality and very reasonably priced.

                      Euro Shopper's energy drink fits in well with the brand as it is a nice product at a very competitive price.

                      If you haven't tried an energy drink before, I should probably tell you that they are best served cold. They taste absolutely awful when served at room temperature. When you open the can you will see that the drink is a pale yellow colour; it looks very sweet and artificial, which it is really!

                      It is very bubbly, and you can tell this when you take a sip; it really tickles the taste buds and has a very sweet, sugary taste. A couple of sips of this really kills sugar cravings!
                      I like the taste of (most) energy drinks, although it is an acquired taste as they are very artificial tasting and really quite different to most other drinks on the market. They are too sweet for some people, but if you have a sweet tooth then you may like the taste and it may ease cravings for sweet foods.

                      As for the energy aspect, it does wake you up a little and make you feel a little more 'alive', but everyone is different so I cannot say what it would do for you. I have a stupidly high tolerance level for caffeine so it doesn't affect me as much, but if you don't have it very often then you may end up as high as a kite, lol!

                      One word of warning though, do not drink it after 5pm (earlier, if you are planning on an early night). It may not seem to affect you too much during the day, but you can feel the effects of it at night when you lie awake in bed for hours unable to sleep!

                      Overall, I enjoy this drink. It is sweet and refreshing and really does wake you up a little when you need it. I am put off by the fact that it isn't sugar free though, and as such probably don't buy it as often as I would buy a sugar free version.

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                      • Natural Cover Up Cream / Make Up / 15 Readings / 15 Ratings
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                        19.11.2010 21:28
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                        Recommended!

                        I bought this concealer for £1.99 (from Boots) a few months ago in an attempt to save a little money on my beauty products, my usual concealer costs a lot more than this so I was unsure as to how well this would work in comparison.

                        The concealer comes in a chunky tube, the type of tube that lip glosses usually come in. Unscrewing the lid, you will see that it also uses the same applicator that lip glosses do. I find that I have to wipe some concealer off back into the pot as too much comes out to use straight away.

                        You can then apply wherever it's needed. I tend to use it under my eyes as I have quite prominent dark circles, I'll also use it when I get a spot every now and again. I tend to wipe a small amount under my eyes then use my finger to even it out as it would take ages to get a nice finish just using the wand.
                        I quite like using this type of tube for my concealer as it is a handy size, the brush is quick and easy to use. It is also possible to put unwanted product back in the tube; I thus have no worries of squeezing too hard and wasting any, as you could with a bottle or squeezy type tube.

                        The concealer itself is very soft and creamy; it is a liquid concealer and is quite runny compared to some other concealers but I quite like this as it is easier to apply and to get a nice finish with. I tend to wipe some on, then dab it in lightly with my finger - you can probably do it other ways but I find that this works perfectly so I don't tend to mess around with it as I sometimes have to with other products.

                        You have a choice of two colours, medium and fair. I went for fair as I am quite pale at the moment. I found that it is a good colour match, not quite the same shade as my skin, although this doesn't matter to me as I always wear foundation over it anyway. I think that it is a similar shade to most other 'fair' concealers and is not an obviously 'warm' or 'cool' shade so should blend well with most skin types. I find the concealer quick and easy to use; the concealer lasts for most of the day, which I am quite impressed with, and it makes a nice base for my foundation.

                        So, a great all-rounder at a great price; I would definitely recommend this concealer and will award it... 5 stars!

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                          19.11.2010 17:56
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                          Not bad.

                          I bought this car seat for my son, not out of necessity, but to replace his previous one that was beginning to look a little old and worn. I bought it for £14.99 with free postage from Amazon.co.uk, which I thought was a bargain. It was one of the cheaper models on the market, but it is a brand I trust and have used before so was confident in my purchase.

                          The booster seat is suitable for children weighing 15-36 KGs, or 33-79 LBS. This is probably for children aged 5+ (depending on the height and weight of the individual), and is the last step before sitting unsupported.

                          The car seat is the basic model that has a base seat with two hooks for the car seat to go round. The 'hooks' on this model are thick and chunky so can be used as arm rests. The arm rests are adjustable and can be raised/lowered by loosening a screw, then tightening again once you have reached the desired height. This in no way affects the safety of the seat.

                          You will also receive a thick strap that ties to the back of the seat, the other end had a plastic clip that you feed the strap through in order for it to be positioned correctly on the child, i.e. over the shoulder, rather than the neck, as can be the case with smaller children.

                          Fitting the seat proved a little more difficult than it should have been.

                          When I opened the box I found two 100 page booklets, I hoped that they would give me enough information to confidently install the seat. The first booklet was written in various other languages, the second contained English instructions, plus ten other languages - this meant that the instructions were nowhere near as detailed as I had imagined, or hoped for.

                          Most of the instructions are advising on how to attach the; head support, lower back support, armrest covers, and body pillows. This would be great, if I actually had any of these items!

                          This is a generic booklet that seems like it is thrown in with every Graco car seat, no matter how different they are. As mentioned, there were two 100 page booklets, only one and a half pages were relevant to this model; this seems pretty ridiculous. The information I needed could have been printed on a single page leaflet and would have saved Graco a lot of money on paper and printing costs - not to mention time for consumers to wade through this useless information.

                          To be fair, there was an extra couple of pages of warnings, although these were pretty irrelevant too, warnings such as, 'never use a second hand booster seat' - pretty useless information for someone who will be reading this leaflet as they have just bought a new booster seat! They also warn that, 'the booster seat can become hot if left in the sun' - really?

                          Anyway (rant over!), from studying the diagrams, I managed to figure out where the seat belt when and how to use the shoulder clip. The seat belt goes under the arm rests, as they usually do on these types of seats. The shoulder clip ties to the base of the seat, you then attach the clip to the seat belt on the opposite shoulder, adjusting the length to fit your child.

                          My son liked the look of this seat and was eager to sit in it. At first, he commented on how comfy it was, although once I attached the shoulder clip he complained that the strap dug into his back. I tried to adjust it but it still dug in due to the angle of the strap. I think that the seat could be used without the clip as it works in exactly the same way as other boosters that don't have the clip, it appears to be only used to adjust the height of the seat belt. I haven't removed it yet, as I plan to look online to check how this will impact on the safety of the seat.

                          Usually I like to test a product fully before reviewing it, but crashing my car is something that I am not willing to do for the purpose of this review (!), so I am unable to say how the seat performs upon impact. The unit does look secure though, and I imagine that it will work in exactly the same way as other units of this type.

                          Overall, I am happy with the car seat. It looks smart and stylish and is easy to use; the initial set up can be frustrating, although this is more of an issue with the instructions than the seat so I can't be too harsh on the product. I therefore award the Graco Backless Booster Seat.... 4 stars!

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                          • Avon Sunrise Alarm / Gadget / 29 Readings / 29 Ratings
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                            19.11.2010 00:18
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                            Don't bother!

                            After reading a few reviews on these types of alarms I decided that I really, really wanted one! Most of them were really overpriced though (around the £100 mark!) so I didn't look into it any further.
                            I was very pleased to see that Avon had brought out a more reasonably priced version. I ordered it when it was on offer at £15, the usual price (and current price) is £25, which is still a bargain in comparison.
                            The sunrise alarm clock claims to begin with a dim glow, which gradually increases to allow you to wake up feeling 'refreshed'.

                            It is a different model to the one pictured and is a tall cylindrical object which has a silver plastic base and a white top, this is where the light shines from; it measures 9 cm x 16.5 cm. It has an on/off switch and an alarm/light/alarm and light switch at the back. On the front there is a sound dial, the clock face (an digital screen), plus four buttons; the buttons are used to set the clock and alarm, the far right button is a 'snooze' button which will stop the alarm sounding for 10 minutes.

                            The alarm requires 6 AA batteries, which is quite surprising given the size of the device. You also need a screwdriver to open the battery cover, which can be pretty annoying (and unnecessary). Setting it up is simple; you get an easy to follow leaflet which tells you step by step how to set both the clock and the alarm. You then simply flick the back button to decide whether you want the light, alarm, or both.
                            Personally, I can't see the point of simply having just the light as I could easily sleep until it is light outside (as I assume most people could), so having a light by my bedside wouldn't achieve anything. Again, only using the alarm is pointless, as I could have just carried on using the alarm on my mobile; so I always chose
                            the alarm and light setting.

                            I tried the alarm on the evening that I received it to see the effect. It's fair to say that I was a little disappointed. The light begins to glow 20 minutes before you want to wake. The initial glow is barely there, which isn't an issue, as it is supposed to be a gradual process. After ten minutes, the glow brightens (apparently), again, this is barely noticeable; I really struggled to see a difference, even though standing in
                            the dark!

                            The light should then go onto full power, which will brighten the room enough to gently wake you... Really? Yes, the light was brighter, and it did illuminate the corner in which it was placed, although I can't say that it would help me to wake, or wake feeling refreshed. I would say that the light is as bright as a child's nightlight, which is a disappointment as I expected a little more from it.

                            The alarm is the standard beep that most alarms have; it gets pretty annoying once you've heard it a few times although this is what I expected so I can't complain.
                            The other issue I have is that when you press the snooze button to halt the alarm, the light goes out as well. I would have expected the light to stay on as it is supposed to be there to help you wake up, so if you are pressing the snooze button then you haven't really woken up yet! I think that it would have been better to have the light stay on until you turned the alarm off completely.

                            One plus point is that you get an AUX cable, which allows you to plug your mp3 player in. From reading the description in the catalogue I gained the impression that you could use the mp3 player to wake up, i.e. as the alarm. I may have read it wrong, as this is definitely not the case. You can plug the mp3 player in and use the device as a speaker. You have to control the mp3 player separately though so will have to turn it on yourself, meaning that it cannot be used as the alarm. This is a nice touch, and I was still reasonably impressed, until I heard the sound quality; the music sounds tinny and echoes slightly. I therefore wouldn't bother to use the alarm clock in this way.

                            I persevered and used the alarm for a couple of nights, but it was completely ineffective and I awoke just as slowly, and feeling just as tired as before. For £15, I was disappointed. I was glad that I'd bought it from Avon though as you are able to return any item, even if it has been used.
                            Unsurprisingly, I did just that.

                            I therefore cannot recommend the Avon Sunrise Alarm as it is a huge disappointment and is completely ineffective. I can't say that I'll try another brand as I don't think that they are worth so much money, I'll probably just continue to leave the landing light on at night as I think that this does the job just as well.

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                            • More +
                              18.11.2010 20:25
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                              Dooyoo: A great way to earn a few extra pennies!

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