Thursday, 28 February 2013

Lush Cinders Ballistic

When treating myself in the Lush sale, something that immediately grabbed my attention was the Cinders Ballistic, or bath bomb as they’re also called. Although this was on sale, which made me interested anyway, it was the colour of this product that really caught my eye. Cinders is a product that is only available for the Christmas season so if you do like this one, you have to be quite quick to get it. In the sale, this cost £2.25 for 100g.

The ballistic is very bright in colour. While most of the ballistic is a yellow colour, there are also red and orange bits too. This reminded me a bit of a bonfire with the mix of different colours and it was certainly very pretty in baskets in the shop. The colour is not really surprising though once you know what this ballistic is made up of. With ingredients such as cinnamon, sweet orange oil and popping candy, the colour seems to suit it really well. The ballistic is quite small in size compared to some of Lush’s other similar products but the look of it made me not mind this at all.

When using the ballistic, you put it under running water while you’re waiting for your bath. Unlike other ballistics, this one dissolved extremely quickly. It only took about 2 minutes to fully dissolve which was quite disappointing. I like to see the ballistic fizzing around in the bath and I didn’t get that with this one. However, the ballistic did make the bath water a really nice yellow/ orange colour which was a bit strange but still nice.

This ballistic has popping candy as an ingredient but I didn’t see any evidence of this working or even being there while the ballistic was in the bath. While it was fizzing away and also after it had dissolved, there were not special popping effects whatsoever. I think the popping candy thing was a great idea but didn’t work out too well in the end.

Unfortunately, the ballistic didn’t fill the bathroom with a nice scent like they normally do. However, while in the water, this did smell quite sweet and not nearly as sickly as I had expected it to. I couldn’t overly smell the cinnamon nor the orange oil. I pretty much ended up with a strange yellow bath that smelt just a bit nicer than it normally would. The scent also didn’t do anything to my skin. After getting out of the bath, my skin did have a slight sweet scent to it but nothing amazing or memorable.

I really wasn’t impressed with the Cinders Ballistic and I won’t be buying it again when it comes back in stock at Christmas. 

Wednesday, 27 February 2013

Superdrug Exfoliating Superfruits Mask

Due to the really bad weather we have had recently, my skin has been a lot drier than and just not as nice as normal. I decided to treat myself to some face masks from Superdrug. These aren’t something which I have used before now but have heard good things about them and figured I would give them a go. At the time of purchase (14/2) they cost 99p each and were on offer for 4 for 3 so I figured I might as well get 4. This review is about the Superdrug Exfoliating Superfruits Mask.

The face mask comes in a thin plastic sachet which is mostly purple. On the right side of the sachet is a picture of a girl with the mask on while the left side has the product name, description, Superdrug star logo and pictures of the fruit used inside. I have to say, out of the four I bought, this is the one with the nicest packaging as it is so bright and colourful. The back of the sachet gives ingredients, a longer description and directions for use.

In order to use this face mask, you need to begin with a clean, dry face. The sachet rips open at the side and then you are able to squeeze out the mask. I found that I didn’t use the whole sachet in one go so really, there is enough for two uses as long as you don’t let it dry out with the sachet already being open. Inside the sachet is a lovely, lilac face mask which smells wonderfully fruity as you open it. When applying the mask to your face, avoid the eye and lip areas.

As soon as I began to put this on my face, I could feel to exfoliating aspects of it. Apparently this is strawberry seeds but who knows. Anyway, the mask felt like it was really exfoliating my skin well while I was applying it and it also felt great on my skin. The sachet states that once applied, you should leave it on for 10-15 minutes, which I did. After only a couple of minutes of being on, I could feel the mask begin to dry and my face tighten. I love masks that do this because although it is something I think will dry your skin out, it never does. After the whole 15 minutes, my face was pretty tight. After 15 minutes, you can rinse the mask off with a warm flannel.

The mask is really easy to remove although it does set quite stiff on your face. I found that I only needed to wipe it off a couple of times in different areas to remove everything. After taking off the mask, my skin was very smooth and although it did feel a little tighter than it probably should have done, it soon softened up again once I was out of the bathroom. After only using this once, and only using half the sachet, my skin felt so much better than it did beforehand. I do wish the smell of the mask lasted a little longer as once it was removed, my skin smelled normal again and not of the fruit in the mask.

I really enjoyed using this face mask and will definitely be buying it again! 

Monday, 25 February 2013

Nails Inc. Devonshire Row

Another of the Nails Inc. nail polishes which I got for Christmas was the Nails Inc. Devonshire Row. Purple is one of my favourite colours for nail polishes although I thought this one might be a little light compared to what I would normally buy. Nails Inc. nail polishes are usually £11 although the official website, often have these on offer for 3 for £22, which is basically 3 for 2. While I think £11 is a little steep for a nail polish, I wouldn’t mind paying the £22 for three bottles.

Something that I always like about Nails Inc. polishes are the bottles. For some reason, I like them more than some other nail polish bottles. I don’t really know why though because really, it’s just a bottle. The bottle is quite small and made from glass while the lid is metallic silver. The bottle has the Nails Inc. logo on the front along with London printed underneath. As there isn’t much on the bottle, it does look quite plain but this is better for being able to see the colour inside. The back of the bottle has the company address along with stating that there is 10ml of nail polish inside. The name of the nail polish is on the bottom of the bottle.

The colour of Devonshire Row is a light purple but not light enough to be lilac. Unlike other Nails Inc. polishes I have used before, this one only needed one coat to make my nails look nice. The polish is nice and thick, and coverage was smooth. My nails were fully coated in one go and although they didn’t really need it, I put a second coat on anyway. However, you can get away with only one coat with this nail polish. The brush you get to use after unscrewing the lid is quite average for a nail polish and it will take 2-3 strokes to cover your whole nail, less obviously for smaller nails.

Even though this purple is lighter than my usual choice of dark purple, I really like it. The colour is bright and fun, which will be great during the summer. This nail polish lasted roughly 4 days before beginning to chip and by that time, I was ready for a change of colour anyway. This is also super easy to remove and unlike with other polishes, it isn’t hard work to get it off!

Friday, 22 February 2013

The Body Shop Raspberry Body Butter

In a sale a while back at The Body Shop, I splashed out and decided to stock up on a few items. One of my purchases was the Body Shop Raspberry Body Butter.
As this is a Body Shop product, it is only available online or in shops. For a 200ml tub of this body butter, you can expect to pay £13. However, as I bought mine in the sale, it only cost me £4.55 which is a complete bargain. I have paid full price before for body butters but it is just too expensive for me to pay now.
The body butter comes in a round plastic tub which is a dark pink colour. The tub has a screw top lid on which is pictures of raspberries as well as the name of the product and the body shop logo. I really like the tubs for these body butters are they are normally quite bright and they are easy to get in to. The tubs are large and are nearly full to the brim with the product. I think that these tubs also stand out and you know when you see one that it is a Body Shop body butter that is inside.
Upon opening the tub, you can see that there is a thick and creamy pink cream inside. The sweet scent of raspberries instantly hits you which is probably because this product includes real raspberry seed oil instead of being all manufactured ingredients. The cream inside the tub is so thick that if you were to tip it upside down, I think it would take a hell of a long time for anything to come out.
I generally use this on my legs as I tend to get quite dry skin, probably from wearing boots all the time without tights. So far, body butters have been the only things to really make my skin feel better. Although the cream is really thick, you do not need to use a lot to cover your skin. I only ever use a little bit on each leg and it goes a long way so buying a 200ml tub will last you ages as long as you don’t go mad with it.
What I love most about this product, along with how good it is at moisturising my skin, is the smell. Although I obviously don’t go around smelling my legs, the smell of this product lasts on my skin all day. I used this the morning of writing this review and it is now 7pm. I can still smell the raspberry scent on my hands which is wonderful.
Although this is an expensive product, I do think it is worth it. I will always try to get different body butters in the sale from now on but if I was desperate, I do think I would pay the full £13 just because these are fantastic products.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Collection 2000 Pump Up The Volume Mascara

I’ve been using the Maybelline Cat Eyes mascara for quite some time now and as mine was running out, I decided it was time for a change. When looking around in Boots, I found the Collection 2000 Pump Up The Volume Mascara on offer for £3.99 which actually only had £1 off. Still, I didn’t want to buy something really expensive and figured that this was worth a shot.

Collection 2000 claim that this mascara ‘delivers up to 12x more volume to give the impression of false lashes without the fiddling. Intensely volumising mascara for bold, fanned out lashes. The Unique curved brush holds extra product for maximum coverage’

The mascara comes in a black and yellow mascara tube, which has a screw top lid. The top of the lid has a bit that is clear although I have no idea why, The packaging is bright and stands out on the shelf, which is partly why I was drawn to it. The front of the tube has the Collection 2000 brand name and the name of the mascara. The back of the tube has the product information, such as a description of what it does and the barcode.

This mascara is available in three colours: black, ultra black and waterproof black. I chose the ultra black because my eyelashes are so light normally. Another reason why I chose this mascara is because I could see by a display that it had a traditional type of brush. By that I mean it isn’t one of these new, horrible plastic brushes. I just don’t get along with them. When you unscrew the lid and pull out the mascara wand, you’ll be able to see the big, thick brush at the top. This is a much thicker brush than I am used to using and it took me a while to get used to it without getting black all over my eyelid.

Just the Mascara
I do use eyelash curlers before putting on mascara so this should be noted when talking about the results. After curling my eyelashes, they were very curled before putting on the mascara. As I said before, the brush is extremely thick and there is a lot of product on it when you pull it out of the tube. As I applied the mascara to my eyelashes, I could see them drop quite quickly. Although the mascara is extremely black, it is also very thick and maybe this weighed my lashes down compared to other mascaras. Although my eyelashes did stay more curled than without curlers or mascara, they definitely did not look like falsies.

With a bit of eyeliner
I’ve been using this mascara for a while now in the hopes that maybe I just get more used to it but so far, this hasn’t happened really. The mascara still goes on extremely thick and while it doesn’t clump, it doesn’t do what it says it will either. I can’t see that this mascara does anything other than make my lashes a lot darker as it certainly doesn’t volumise them by much. Even though this was a cheap mascara, I was still expecting better. I know that from now on I won’t be trying anything cheap again because my lashes are just too straight to risk it! 

Tuesday, 19 February 2013

Pay Day Purchases #1

Although I am pretty much broke most months before my wages hit my bank account, I've decided to treat myself to at least one thing new every month. Hence, the Pay Day Purchases post. As I'm a student and I'm paying for my wedding in Florida in September, I never have much free money but I miss buying new make up and beauty products. Most of my eye-shadows are in big paletts, mostly Urban Decay. However, these are a bit big for taking on holiday sometimes and I wanted some individual eye shadows that I could carry around more easily. Having seen so many bloggers recommend MUA, I figured it was about time I tried the brand. 

So, I bought 4 single eye-shadows in shades 1, 2, 11 and 12. 

I also bought a MUA 3 in 1 Extreme Contour Liner. I'm used to using a pen when it comes to eye liners so I'm looking forward to seeing how I get on with this one. 

As well as some new make up, I bought some face masks from Superdrug as they were 4 for 3 and with this horrible weather we've been having, my skin is a bit drier than normal. 

So there we go, my first Pay Day Purchases post. I hope you'll all like reading these and I'll obviously be reviewing the products I buy at some point as well!

Monday, 18 February 2013

Wilko Tropical Shower Cream Coconut

Another product which I decided to try from the Wilko range of bath and shower products is the Wilko Tropical Shower Cream Coconut. As usual, this can only be bought in Wilko shops or online and will cost you £1 for a 250ml tube. These have also been on offer for ages at 2 for £1.50.

Wilko describe the product as; “Tropical coconut shower cream, you'll love the way your skin feels after every moisturising, tropical-scented shower.”

The shower gel comes in a plastic tube/ bottle, which stands upright on the flip top cap at the bottom. The tube is covered with a white printed on label, which gives the product information and description along with a picture of a coconut cut in half with drops of liquid coming off it. I like the picture on this product as it really does make the shower gel look tempting… and also made me want coconut. I think that this product is a lot plainer looking than others in the same range but only because it is white rather than a bright colour.  

The cap at the bottom of the tube is quite stiff which makes it a bit hard to pop open. This isn't the best idea for when you're in the shower and already have wet hands. I tend to leave the cap slightly open all of the time now without clicking it back shut after every use. The shower cream squeezes out of the tube easily enough and it comes out in thick amounts so not too much at any time. As I said before, the colour of this product is white and the shower cream does like quite plain and boring because of this.

The scent of coconut is quite strong with this shower cream but it is also very refreshing at the same time. When used on a puff ball, the cream lathers up very quickly under hot water. There is also quite a lot of lather with this one and noticeably more than when using other Wilko bath/ shower products. The rich lather feels great on my skin and the scent of coconut is lovely, especially during my morning shower. I feel as though this is a shower cream which wakes me up more than some others. After rinsing off the cream, this makes my skin feel really soft and moisturised as well as clean and refreshed.

This coconut shower cream is one of my favourites from Wilko and I’ll definitely be buying it again. 

Friday, 15 February 2013

Not long left...

I can’t believe it’s the middle of February already! Where is this year going? For me, it being this time of year means that it is nearly time for me to finish university. As I don’t have any exams this year I am finishing right at the beginning of May instead of the middle of June like I normally would. I only have a couple of little bits of my dissertation left to write and one more essay and that’s about it, other than a couple of other little bits and pieces which are done weekly. Anyway, because we only have a few months left, this week my flatmate Kate and I had people round for Pancake Day. To begin with, we decided to treat ourselves with a bottle of Proseco and the lovely box of chocolates Kate’s mum left the other week! 

As you can see, we probably aren't the most stereotypical student and we do like to have something nice in the house!!

Next came the pancakes. Kate, our friends Laura and Danielle, and myself made the most humongous batch of pancake mix I have ever seen. We all contributed something which resulted in there being a table full of awesome toppings as well as a tub of ice cream which you won't see in the picture below. It was so much fun all having a couple of turns at making our own pancakes and then digging in and experimenting a little bit with the fillings. Although I'm at work a lot and don't get to do this kind of thing often, I really will miss having people round and having nights like this. 

Yum!! What did you all do this week and how did you spend Pancake Day?

Thursday, 14 February 2013

Boots Natural Collection Wild Strawberry Face Mask

My soon to be mother in law bought me a lovely gift box from Boots for the Christmas just passed. I love anything bath/ shower related so she did well to pick me a Boots Natural Collection strawberry set. One of the products inside the set was a Wild Strawberry Face Mask. These are also available to buy individually from either Boots stores or online. For a 10ml packet, it will cost £1.

The Natural Collection range has quite simple packaging and this product is no exception. The face mask comes in a thin, pink sachet. On the front of the sachet is the Boots logo, product name as well as a picture of a woman with the mask on her face (although her face also has actual strawberries on as well). The packet is nice looking and also very girly. Because of the way the packet looks, I think this will do well with younger girls and would be perfect for a sleepover.

The sachet opens easily, with a slight cut taken out one of the sides. This is where you can tear the sachet open to reveal the face mask. However, I would say that if you wanted to use this while in the bath, it would be a bit trickier to open the sachet with wet hands. Inside the sachet is a thick, light pink cream which is easily squeezed out. You can faintly smell strawberries as you open the sachet but the scent doesn’t hit you immediately and it isn’t too strong either.

Boots recommend that you apply the face mask to areas excluding the eyes and mouth and then leave it on for 20 minutes. After putting on the mask, covering near enough my whole face, I waited for it to set. However, unlike other face masks I have used in the past, this one didn’t dry up like I was expecting it to. Yes, my face got a little bit tight but nothing close to what I was expecting. Even after the 20 minutes, the face mask was still slightly wet. Removal is super easy and all you need to do is rinse off with a flannel then dry your face as normal.

While this face mask didn’t do amazing things for my skin, it did leave me feeling refreshed and smooth. I really liked the smell and it didn’t dry my skin out which was good. For £1, this is a good face mask but I dare say that there are better out there for the same price.

Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Amazon Kindle/ Kindle HD charger

After buying a cheap charger for my Kindle Fire HD and realising they just did not work well together, my fiancé bought me the official Amazon charger for Christmas. At first, I was reluctant to pay the £17.99 for the product, which is why I ended up with something that didn’t work. Although Waterstones do now sell Kindles, the charger is currently only available through Amazon.

Firstly, I think that this should have been something you get with the purchase of a Kindle. Being a tablet that does run down the battery quite quickly if not only using for reading, the USB charger is not adequate enough for my charging needs. Anyway, this charger comes in a little black box with the Amazon and Kindle logos on it. Inside the box is the plug, which does not have a cable on it. This plug is designed to be used with the USB cable provided at the time of purchase. The USB cable fits into the underneath of the plug, so to not stick out at all or get in the way. As plugs go, this one looks quite sleek and nice but then I would hope so for near enough £18.

Amazon claims that this charger ‘Fully charges your Kindle Fire or Kindle Fire HD devices in under 4 hours’ and after having bad experiences so far with chargers, I was sceptical. However, this charger does exactly what it says it should do which is fantastic. I sometimes work 13 and a half hour shifts at work and the Kindle battery definitely does not last that long so I needed something that would charge quickly so this charger is actually perfect.

Although this is an expensive plug, it is well worth the money. 

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Kindle Fire HD - a (hopefully) non-techy review!

For a long time I had been wanting and iPad or the Samsung equivalent. However, with getting married next year neither have been a viable option due to price. When the Kindle Fire was released, I was immediately interested as the price was much more affordable. Before buying a Kindle Fire though, I made sure I weighed up my options and made sure the Kindle would do near enough everything I wanted it to do. No tablet has a great word document feature and all have notes apps but other than that, to me they are all pretty similar. My wonderful fiancé decided the Kindle Fire HD would be my Christmas present and he gave me it early last November. Now, we didn’t buy from Amazon as I’m impatient so we got it from Waterstones but the prices are the same.

*I appologise now for the quality of the pictures. The lighting in my room is utter crap!*

Buying options
The Kindle Fire HD comes in two varying sizes in terms of storage. You can either get 16GB or 32GB with prices being either £159 or £199 respectively. At Waterstones, you have no option to buy without special offers whereas you do on Amazon. Prices without the special offers are £169 and £209 on Amazon.  The special offers aren’t really special and really this just means that you get adverts on the Kindle unless you pay £10 more to get rid of them. However, you can pay the lower prices and then choose to opt out over the phone once your Kindle is registered. Due to buying through Waterstones, the ‘special offers’ were already on my Kindle but so far, I haven’t noticed anything too annoying that makes me want to pay to get rid of them.

Size and Design
The Kindle Fire HD has a 7 inch screen which for me is plenty big enough. The size of the actual machine is a little bigger, 7.6 inches, with a black border around the screen. The width is 5.4 inches. On the top middle of the front of the Kindle is a 1.3MP camera which can be used for Skype which is a feature I love! The back of the Kindle has on it the logo, the Amazon logo and some basic information such as ‘made in…’ as well as the speaker grates, one of the left and one on the right. If you hold the Kindle in landscape you will find buttons on the left side. The larger button is for sound (above it the hole for speakers and headphones) and the smaller button is for turning the Kindle on and off. I know many people have said the buttons are hard to find but I don’t find this to be the case at all.

The size and design of the Kindle Fire HD is lovely and I think it looks really nice when in your hands. It looks sleek and sophisticated and nothing at all like the older Kindles so it really stands out.

First time user
I have never owned a normal Kindle or a tablet so I had no idea what to do when setting this up. The cocktails beforehand did not help either!! Basic set up is super easy – all you need to do is turn it on with the button and voila! The Kindle is on. To begin with, you will be asked to put in Wi-Fi information, what language you want and your Amazon email address so the Kindle can be linked to it. That was the easy part. After that I had no idea what I was doing but still, even after a few cocktails, it was not that hard.

On the top of the Kindle screen is your menu, where you will find options such as Books, Music, Docs, Web etc. The menu is text only and runs along the top of the screen where you are able to scroll across to more options. Above the menu is the name of your Kindle, time, Wi-Fi connection information and the battery life bar. In the middle of the screen is your carousel, which is where anything opened on the Kindle will go. There is now a huge scrollable list of everything I have ever opened on the Kindle in the middle of my screen which is damn annoying. You can remove these big icons by pressing down in the middle of them and choosing ‘remove from carousel’ but if you forget to do this much, it will take you ages. In the bottom right hand corner of the screen is a little star. By pressing this, you will be able to see your favourite apps or books etc. To choose favourites for this section of the Kindle, do it in the same way as removing them from the carousel and picking ‘add to favourites’ instead.

Kindle as a Kindle
Although I didn’t only want to read books on my new toy, I did want to do that very much. In the top menu, you can go through the Shop to find Kindle books or you can do so on Amazon instead. You need to set up one click buying for you Kindle otherwise you will not be able to purchase books or apps etc. so this should be something you do quite quickly. As your Kindle is synced to your Amazon account, e-books purchased or downloaded for free will instantly be sent to your Kindle and kept in the books sections.

Now, while downloading and buying books was extremely easy, even for someone half drunk and who had never done it before, I did have some issues. Books cannot be sorted into folders or categories like the can on a regular Kindle. As an organisation freak, who lives for lists, this was not a good thing for me to figure out. Should I ever have a couple of hundred books on the Kindle, it will take me so long to find the ones I want. I would have thought that as a Kindle, this would have been a feature top of the list to keep. However, after having a strop and not wanting to look at more books, I decided to give it another go and ignore the fact I cannot organise my e-books.

While reading a book, you have options such as bookmark, changing the font style and size, go to which is where you can jump to different points of the book, and notes where you can add notes on bookmarked pages. There is also a feature called X-Ray where you can quickly find parts of the book which mention a certain name, place etc. and even find out biographical information. This is a really interesting feature although it doesn’t work on all books yet.  

For NetGalley users! 
Before trying to send NetGalley books to your Kindle, you must first add their email address to your trusted contacts list through your Amazon account. It took me ages to figure out why the books weren’t being sent and this is why. Also, any books sent from NetGalley will go in the Docs part of your Kindle, not the Books part. I like this though as it means my review books will be kept separate.

Video and Music
Strangely, the Kindle Fire HD is a really good music player. Songs can either be bought through Amazon and sent to the Kindle or imported from your PC or laptop which is very simple to do. In order to do this, you again go through the Amazon website and into your Kindle settings. The screen tells you exactly what to do and you only need to follow the instructions. Music cannot be imported through Google Chrome though so make sure you do it in Internet Explorer or any of the other web browsers which are supported. Any music bought through Amazon can be stored in your Cloud, which is a way of storing content for free without using up the space on your device. The sound quality is amazing and much better than I had expected. Songs come through very clear and the volume is loud enough without being overpowering.

With the Kindle (with special offers) you get a free months trial with Love Film which begins when you start streaming your first movie. The picture quality, much like sound quality was much better than I had expected. Obviously, to stream films you need a Wi-Fi connection. If you have a slow internet connection you could suffer from buffering problems although this is not something I have experienced yet. Films are great to watch on the Kindle Fire HD and while I thought the screen would be too small, it isn’t. Just think of those portable DVD players you can buy, this is very similar to their sizes.

The Kindle Fire HD, powered by Andriod 4.1, makes it much like a mobile phone. Through the Shop part of the menu, you can search to your heart’s content for fun games and apps to download. The Apps store has a wide variety of games to download such as Angry Birds and The Sims as well as things like a notepad, calculator etc. The range of apps is fantastic although in the same way with phones, be careful which you choose as some are crap while others are great. Read the reviews if you aren’t sure about the quality of an app. 

Any apps downloaded or bought can be found in the App part of the menu or if recently used, in the annoying carousel. Like books, you cannot sort these into any kind of order and are pretty much shown like they are on bookshelves and you need to scroll through to find the ones that you want. While playing games etc, I have found the Kindle to be quick and efficient with loading and I was very impressed. I was expecting some things to lag a little bit while loading but no problems with this so far.

Other bits and pieces
As I said earlier, as a tablet, the Kindle Fire HD does a hell of a lot for the price. You can go online to your favourite websites through the Web function, go on popular social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook (as well as getting the apps) but you can also read magazines or upload all of your photos from Facebook onto the device. As you can see in the picture, your photos will be shown in different sizes although you can view the full size photo by pressing on it. 

When you buy the Kindle, you do not get a mains charger. Instead, you have to charge through the USB cable supplied which is a massive pain in the arse. Charging takes ages, especially if you are using your Kindle and then, it will barely charge at all. This also means leaving your PC or laptop on whenever you want to charge the Kindle. There are non-Kindle chargers available on Amazon and I will be getting myself one pretty quickly.

Covers are a must!! I have a lovely purple cover for my Kindle but I paid an insane price for it in Waterstones because I was impatient and couldn’t wait for one to come from Amazon, where they are available for a much better price (non-Kindle branded covers anyway). Without a cover, your Kindle will get scratched quickly and I wouldn’t advise taking it anywhere without a cover, especially if you are putting it in a handbag.

Final Thoughts 
While there are a few little niggles I have with the Kindle Fire HD, they aren’t enough to make me regret getting one. Ok, so it takes a while to charge – this can be fixed with a plug charger. The books cannot be sorted – fixed by deleting from the Kindle and being kept in Cloud storage on the Amazon website once you have read the book. This tablet has so many good features to it and considering the price, I am so glad I (or my fiancé) never splashed out for the iPad or Samsung Galaxy.

Monday, 11 February 2013

Delilah Dust Jewellery

When I saw that Delilah Dust was having a sale on the Etsy shop, I had to go and have a look at what was on offer! There was so much to choose from but I had to limit myself (unfortunately) and I ended up buying three things. At only £2 each with free shipping, I could have easily spent a hell of a lot more. It has been a while since I've bought myself any jewellery and I wanted something fun and cute. I generally don't wear much jewellery but only because it is all back at my mum's house in Grimsby instead of here at university in Nottingham.

1. Long neck dinosaur necklace (silver)

2. Bee necklace (silver)

3. Arrow bracelet (gold)

I have to say, the long neck dinosaur necklace is by far my favourite and I can see me wearing it quite a lot. Unfortunately, the chain on the arrow bracelet is quite short and it seems that I have thick wrists so it only just fits. However, this will now be given to my 15 year old cousin for her upcoming birthday instead. It's a shame this didn't fit but at least it won't just sit in my jewellery box not being used. 

Even though these items were only £2 each, they are great quality and something I would definitely purchase if I saw them in a shop. While I probably won't be buying bracelets from Delilah Dust again, I will definitely be getting some more necklaces when I have some spare cash. 

If you want to visit Delilah Dust you can at:

Friday, 8 February 2013

Paladone Soldier Egg Cup and Toast Cutter

My boyfriend loves his eggs in the morning and I wanted some fun things to buy him for Christmas. When I saw the Paladone Soldier Egg Cup and Toast Cutter on Amazon, I knew that I had to get it for him. At the minute, this can be found on Amazon for various prices ranging from £6-£8ish. For the price, this does make a nice little stocking filler and not just for a Christmas present. It would also do really well as a present for any occasion.

Paladone describe the product as: ‘This smart guardsman holds your egg under his hat and your spoon ready for action! There's also a clever toast cutter that literally makes soldiers to dip into the egg - yummy!’

The product comes in quite a nice display box. The box is made from cardboard and has the Union Jack flag printed on it. On the front, there is a large part of the box cut out and covered with plastic which makes it possible to see the product inside. On the left hand of the box, there is a picture of a soldier already cut out of bread being dipped into an egg. I really liked the packaging to this product as it was fun and bright, making it stand out.

Inside the box you get one egg cup in the shape of a soldier, along with a black hat for it. The soldier is also holding a small red spoon. Next to this is a red plastic template with the shapes of three soldiers cut out. The egg cup looks really nice and is super cute and this was something my boyfriend really appreciated. However, the egg cup is only big enough for either small or medium eggs and you will have trouble getting a large egg to fit in it well. The black hat also sits on well before you break the egg which helps to keep it warm.

The problem with this product comes with the soldier cutter. The cutter is made out of a really cheap plastic and the bottom side is not very sharp. We like to use quite thick bread for toast and it took some work to make this cut anything out of it. However, after a few attempts, we realised that if you really put some pressure on the cutter and wiggle it around a little bit, it cuts the toast much easier. As the cutting of the toast is not great, this would be a bit of a struggle for children to do on their own, and I’m sure that is who this product is aimed at.

Even with the problems that this product has, we both love it but mainly because it is so nice looking. 

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Barry M Nail Paint - 273 Raspberry

Barry M is one of my favourite brands of nail polish and I always love buying more. One of my absolute favourite shades is the 273 Raspberry. Generally, these will set you back £2.99 in most shops like Boots or Superdrug but they are on offer quite often for 2 for £5 which I always like to take up.

273 Raspberry is a bright colour and as with all bright coloured nail polishes, it is advisable to use a base coat because strong colours can stain your nails. However, I have used this one with and without a base coat and luckily, this is a colour which does not stain your nails. Both with and without a base coat, you’ll need two coats of this colour to make it look nice and as it should.

The brush provided made this nail polish extremely easy to apply. Sometimes with cheaper brushes you can end up with brush marks or even some of the bristles falling off. Barry M nail polish provides a smooth application that looks flawless. I really don’t have a steady hand but I managed to not get any colour on the sides of my nails. The actual nail polish is quite thick but not to the point where it is overly gloopy. I think the thickness of the polish is just enough to give a nice finish on your nails.

This nail polish lasted a whole week with minimal chipping. However, when I say chipping, it was only on the top edges of my nails that started to come away but not much at all. After nearly 2 weeks of having this nail polish on, the completed look was near enough still intact with only a few small bits missing as I just explained. I didn’t use a top coat with this nail polish but I don’t think that would have made the colour last any better.

While Barry M nail polishes last really well time wise, they are also really easy to remove. As I said, no base coat was used but the majority of the colour came off with only one swipe of a cotton wool pad and some nail polish remover. I hate having to spend ages taking off a colour so this is another reason why I love this one so much. Also, unlike some other polishes, this one doesn’t smear the colour all over your fingers when you remove it.

Barry M 273 Raspberry is a colour I would buy over and over again when this bottle eventually runs out! 

Wednesday, 6 February 2013

Nails Inc. Warwick Way

I get really bored with having the same nail colour for too long so I tend to change it about once a week. Having been bought some amazing colours from Nails Inc. for Christmas, I decided to work my way through them before using anything else. Nails Inc. polishes are pretty expensive considering they’re £11 each for a single bottle so they’re not something I would buy myself very often. However, often have them on offer at 3 for £22 which is basically 3 for 2. This review is for Nails Inc. Warwick Way. The official Nails Inc. picture does not really do the colour of this polish justice though as you will soon.

All Nails Inc. nail polish bottles are exactly the same which is something I love about them. Although I have loads of different nail polishes, I can always pick out different brands due to their packaging. The bottle is quite small and made from glass while the lid is metallic silver. The bottle has on it the Nails Inc. logo along with London underneath which makes the bottle look quite plain. However, this makes it possible to really see the colour of the polish inside without it being covered up by silly lettering. The back of the bottle has on it the company address along with showing that there is 10ml of liquid inside. If you turn the bottle upside down, you can see the name of the nail polish on the underneath.

As I said earlier, the official picture makes this nail polish look as though it is a bright blue. It isn’t. Warwick Way is actually more of a teal/ green colour and not even anywhere else to blue. As I painted on the first coat, I could see just how thin the polish was, meaning it would definitely take 2 coats or more to fully cover my nails. The brush used with this nail polish is just like any other and generally takes 2-3 strokes to cover one nail which isn’t too bad. The first coat dried quite quickly meaning I could do the second one in only a few minutes. The second coat really made my nails look great and I decided I didn’t need a third coat after all.

What I love about this nail polish is that although it isn’t supposed to be a quick drying product, it does that anyway. Within 10 minutes my nails were perfectly dry and I could go about doing other things. Also, this is a really good nail polish in regards to chipping. My nail polish only began to chip at the very top after 4 days which for me, being on the laptop and working with a keyboard, was fantastic. Nails Inc. polishes are also easy to remove although some of the brighter colours may stain your hands a little if you don’t take it off carefully.

Although I do think this is an expensive nail polish, I love the colour and can’t wait to get back around to using it again! 

Tuesday, 5 February 2013

Wilko Sweet Shower Smoothie Vanilla & Honey

After Christmas, I treat myself to some more of the Wilko bath and shower range after liking everything I had bought so far. One product I bought was the Wilko Sweet Shower Smoothie Vanilla & Honey.

This shower smoothie comes in a squeezy tube made from a thin plastic. Some of the tube is clear while most of it is covered with a brown printed on label. The label has on it the Wilko logo, name of the product, ‘sweet’ in large lettering down the right hand side as well as a picture of honey and vanilla. At the bottom of the tube, there is a large black flip top cap which is where the product inside comes out of. Unfortunately, like other products in this range, I find the cap at the bottom quite hard to open, especially with wet hands in the shower. After opening for the first time, I tend to now leave these caps slightly open and don’t click them closed anymore. I wish the caps were a bit softer in their opening because it does hurt my fingers sometimes.

Although the packaging does warn this this is a ‘sweet’ product, I don’t think I was quite ready for just how sweet the scent is. When I first poured some of the smoothie onto my shower puff, the scent of the vanilla mixed with honey hit me immediately. The scent only got even sweeter as I mixed the smoothie with hot water. While I normally love anything with vanilla in it, this smoothie was just far too sweet for me and I actually can’t stand the smell of it. Even though this is a smoothie, a mixture of shower gel and a shower scrub, it still lathers up well on the shower puff. The smoothie does feel really good on my skin and because of the small scrubby bits, my skin feels smoother and buffed after using this.

As this is a Wilko product, it can only be found in stores or online. At the minute, these are on offer 2 for £1.50 or £1 each, which is why I stocked up on them. Even though the price is really good, I just can’t get over how sweet the smell of this shower smoothie is so I won’t be buying it again.  

Monday, 4 February 2013

Stackers Jewellery Box

It has been years since I’ve owned a proper jewellery box. Back at my Mum’s, most of my jewellery sits in the top section of a Beauty Box she won for me years ago. However, it’s massive and hard to carry around so I wanted something smaller and easier to use, and also something here in Nottingham. After browsing on Amazon for a while, and having seen these in John Lewis, I opted for a Stackers jewellery box.

Stackers make jewellery boxes in a slightly different way than others. Stackers sell their jewellery boxes in separates, meaning that you can either buy a whole set in one or buy piece by piece or only buying the trays that you need. The jewellery trays are available in a wide range of colours and styles so you can also mix and match if you want to.

I opted for the top lip section, as that obviously made more sense than buying a tray without a lid, in cream with a purple lining. This is a medium sized Stacker jewellery box measuring 25 x 18 x 3.5cm. This size is fantastic. Although it is not huge, it is also no way near small either. The box is made from synthetic cream leather, which feels soft to touch and looks nice from the outside. To open the box, there is a metal clasp which has the Stackers logo on it, which is fixed to the box with purple cotton.

This particular Stackers box has a purple cotton lining, which matches the material on the clasp. I love the colour of this purple and how it looks with the cream on the outside. The colours go really well together and I like this one much more than some of the other designs available. When you open the box, the lid stays up courtesy of one purple piece of material on the left hand side. Inside the box is the Stackers logo again, stitched onto the top part. This lid box has 7 different sections inside, making it possible to hold different kinds of jewellery. The other Stackers boxes generally have the same sized compartments in them e.g. one box for rings, one for necklaces etc. This one has two compartments large enough for necklaces, 5 which I think are best suited to bracelets and one for rings. This is perfect for me at the minute as I don’t have much of my jewellery in Nottingham.

I really love my new jewellery box and it is perfect for what I need it for. I can’t wait to start buying more layers to this though which I plan to do throughout the year. 

Friday, 1 February 2013

The Body Shop Green Apple Bath and Shower Gel

Although I normally only buy body butters from the Body Shop, during their recent sale I decided to try some other products seeing as the prices were so good. One product I bought was the Body Shop Green Apple Bath and Shower Gel. As this is a Body Shop product, it is only available in store or through the online shop.
The product in question comes in a 250ml plastic bottle which would normally set you back around £4. However, as this was in the sale, I got a bargain and only paid £1 for it. I would never have paid the full price for this due to the size of the bottle and I know that I could get a better deal on shower gels in a different shop. The bottle is mainly see through, making it possible to see the bright green colour of the product inside. The bottle has a dark green label on it, with white writing which explains what the product is. The bottle also has a black flip top lid which is how you squeeze the product out.
If I had been in a shop looking at this product, I doubt that I would have bought it. Firstly, as I said before, I wouldn’t have paid the full price. Secondly, the packaging is extremely boring and it wouldn’t stand out on a shelf at all. I think especially considering the price that you would normally pay for this, the packaging could have been even a little bit nicer.
This is a dual product, where you can use in both the shower and the bath although I have only ever used it in the shower. I’m sure it would have just the same effect in the bath though. As soon as you pop open the flip top lip, the sweet smell of apples comes through quickly. I use this product with one of those fluff ball things and when I begin to pour some liquid out onto it, I notice that the liquid is pretty runny. Because of this, quite a lot comes out at once which is unnecessary. The bright green liquid foams up easily on the fluff ball, which again means that you don’t need to use a lot.
The smell of this shower gel is lovely once wet and foamed up. The smell of apples quickly fills my bathroom and it stays there for quite some time. The shower gel also feels great on my skin, leaving it feel very refreshed and cleansed. While this shower gel doesn’t really moisturise or do anything other than clean your skin, it is still a lovely shower product. However, it isn’t nice enough to pay £4 for a normal sized bottle.