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hildah11

hildah11
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Member since: 12.06.2011

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      26.10.2013 00:53
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      Great garden chemical which works

      ~WILKO MULTI PURPOSE BUG SPRAY~ Do bugs in your vegetable garden bother you? I normally would not be bothered by a few odd one here and there but this past summer, bugs created havoc in my small vegetable garden so I had to take drastic action. The summer was good and the vegetables really flourished within a short space of time. I had the honour of enjoying the first few harvest before the invaders descended on my vegetables. Even though there was also a lush of vegetation all over, the only problem is that these bugs are indiscriminate feeders so instead of leaving my vegetable alone and concentrating on the flush vegetable around, they literally defoliated the vegetables which id the edible part I was also after. So we were competing and there had to be a winner. This review is on my battle with caterpillars which had invaded vegetable garden. When I first noticed that the leaves were being nibbled away, I didn't worry much. Three days after that the leaves were literally lacerated leaving the veins standing out, I realised my vegetables were literally disappearing in my eyes, I had to act immediately. I searched for the offenders I noticed caterpillars some small some large happily feeding away. In addition there were tiny yellow granular clusters stuck on the bottom of the leaves. I was intrigued and did a search only to discover that the yellow blogs were actually the eggs waiting to hatch to release more caterpillars so basically my garden was under attack. There was no time to waste as the attackers were ferocious. I had to find a remedy so next day I was out on a search for a garden chemical. ~Availability ~ Our Wilko is within easy reach in the town centre and it sells stuff for the garden in addition to other stuff. I checked in the garden section and saw various brands of insecticides with prices ranging from £3.00 to £7.00 for the garden prays which come ready for use. All I wanted was a litre so I went for the Wilko brand which was £3.00. ~Product Description~ The bug spray comes ready to use in a one litre white plastic container with a red screw on lid with a spray nozzle. One side of the container has a picture of a caterpillar on leaves so it was easy to realise this was the chemical I needed for the target bugs. The other side of the container has lots of printed text, manufacturer, composition, application instructions and the necessary warnings. ~Formulation~ This is a liquid formulation which comes already mixed to the required concentration and ready to use. The active ingredient is cypermethrin and the concentration is 0.05g/litre. Insecticides can be bought as powders or liquid concentrates which often need reconstituting to the required concentration. This is good if you need large quantities but for me a premixed formulation was what I needed as I didn't need much since my garden is rather small. I wanted something easy to use, no weighing or mixing and mimimising the risk of contamination and contact with my skin. I was also guaranteed of using the correct dosage as it is easy to make mistakes during weighing and end up using wrong dosage which may either fail to kill the bugs if too dilute or burn the plants if too concentrated. . I also didn't want to have any unnecessary left over which would have been wasted. ~Use~ The instructions indicate that the chemical should be used a spray targeting the bugs, in this case the caterpillars hence the need for the nozzle. This chemical works well as a spray when sprayed directly at the caterpillars. The spray has to come out as a fine spray to increase the surface area of contact with the caterpillars. Because the caterpillars were on the leaves, pouring the chemical on the soil would not have helped due to lack of target contact. I watered the plants thoroughly a day before to make sure they were turgid the following day. I prepared for my task late afternoon when the plants were turgid, foliage dry and temperatures were dropping a bit. I wore protective clothing to avoid exposing my skin to the chemicals and began spraying the vegetables targeting the growth above the soil level and ensuring that it was well covered by the spray droplet and also directly getting in contact with the caterpillars. I sprayed following the rows of the vegetables to ensure no plants were missed. It was an effort but it had to be done. The manufacturer recommends spraying once every 10 days when necessary. It is important to follow these spray intervals especially for edible crops to avoid consuming vegetables with chemical residues which can lead to poisoning. I sprayed only once and within 24 hours nearly all the caterpillars were dead. I didn't remove them so they eventually fell off on their own. Within the next few days even the eggs which still managed to hatch, the small caterpillars still died from only just one spray. Within 7 days the new foliage was starting to show and the caterpillars were nowhere to be seen. Within 2 weeks my garden was flourishing once again and I was enjoying vegetables from my garden once again. ~My Verdict~ The Wilko multipurpose bug spray is an effective insecticide for home garden use. It is easy to use and reasonably priced compared to other brands which are formulated from the same active ingredients. The main problem with use of chemicals is that constant use may lead to insect resistance so for me there was no need for another spray as we were coming towards the end of the summer anyway. I know buying the concentrate and reconstituting it myself would work out cheaper than buying ready to use but for me this was just convenient and sufficient for my needs at the time. ~Safety~ Like any chemical, caution should be exercised at all times. Garden chemicals are poisonous so keep the chemicals away from the reach of children, preferably under lock and key. Store in a cool dry place and away from direct sunlight. Avoid contact with the skin and eyes, do not swallow. In case of any accident, contact your doctor immediately. Wash hands after use and do not allow children to spray the plants. **Learn something new today: do you know where caterpillars come from? ~Glossary~ *Bug - in this case means a small insect *Insecticide- a substance that destroys insects by chemical action *Caterpillar - the larva of a butterfly or moth, with a long soft body, many short legs *Formulation - a mixture of ingredients prepared in a certain way and used for a specific purpose *Active ingredient - the substance in a pesticide that is biologically active *Pesticide - a substance used to destroy insects or other organisms harmful to cultivated plants or to animals My rating for this product: 4 stars. Great product for targeting caterpillars. **It is a shame I could not find the picture of the product online and I could not attach the pictures I took with my camera either. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating ©hildah11 - October 2013

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        27.09.2013 23:51
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        Exfoliating my face but with extra care.

        ~TESCO CUCUMBER FACIAL SCRUB~ ~Why I bought this facial scrub~ I use face cleaning products regularly and I always prefer to use products with main ingredients I trust. I particularly like face products with cucumber for their healthy related benefits. I have used various face products with cucumber but of late the general affordable ones have been a bit hard to come by and when they reappeared on the shop shelves, they were a bit more expensive than before. I noticed a new range of cucumber face products in Tesco and I have been buying theses for a while now. The Tesco Cucumber Facial Scrub is one of the products in this range. Generally just the idea of scrubbing my face makes me uncomfortable but I do appreciate that once in a while I need to do it as it is good for my skin. This review is for one of the products: Tesco Exfoliating Face Scrub (with Cucumber Extract & Vitamin E) ~Availability and Price~ The cream is manufactured in the UK for Tesco stores Ltd. It is just one of the cucumber based face products they manufacture. Being a Tesco product, it is mainly available in Tesco stores including the Tesco online stores. In the UK, the cream is available in 150 ml tubes for just £1.39. You can get it on offer, any 3 for 2 cheapest product free (until Monday 14th October 2013) ~ Packaging and Visibility~ The cream now comes in a tube with slightly different pictorial design. The tube in a simple white squeezable plastic tube with a white standard flip up lid. The tube is also made of good quality plastic which does not crack easily. The cream is located with other face creams and cleansing products, you can't miss the white bottle with a green sketching of cucumber slices and the word "EXFOLIATING" clearly visible in block print on the front side of the tube.. Environment wise, there is no extra packaging with this cream, so what you see is what you get. ~Composition and Application~ The cream is especially formulated to scrub and exfoliate the skin. The cream is translucent and has a non runny balanced texture. The cream contains white granules designed to help exfoliate the skin so basically it does not have a smooth consistence like many creams. The main ingredients include cucumber fruit extract (Cucumis sativus) and vitamin E in addition to the other additives and chemicals. The ingredients in the cream seem well balanced. It is meant to be applied by gently rubbing onto the skin. I tend to do a small portion at a time in a circular motion so allowing the scrubbing process to occur gently without forcefully rubbing it on the skin. The cream does not come with an applicator so you have to use either your fingers or a flannel to scrub your face AND most important, rinse off thoroughly with comfortably warm water, preferably with your eyes closed. Be careful too much pressure might cause bruising and ouch! believe me this can be painful. Just remember that Rome was not built in one day, so benefits show after a few sessions, so basically I am saying do not overdo it in the rush to see wonders. It is fairly easy to apply but I should say no matter how careful I am, I always end up with a few granules in my eyes and this is very uncomfortable. Thorough rinsing my eyes usually does the trick to clear them from my eyes. Because of the time required, I usually use it at night and once a week as I don't want to overdo it. Over exfoliation can damage the skin. ~Scent~ The smell is nice, lightly fragranced with cucumber smell from the cucumber extract. The smell is not overpowering at all. ~Environment wise~ It was not tested on animals so it's good to know that no animal suffered for my beauty but if we consider that plants have feeling too, then yes the cucumber plant really suffered! The tube is made of plastic which can be widely recycled. ~My verdict~ Yes, it does the job but I feel the granules are too big making the cream too coarse. You can almost feel as though you are scratching your face at times but no major harm if you are careful. I tend to think, the smaller the granules, the better for the job as the face coverage is bound to be good as well. In my view not ideal for people whose skin is prone to bruising. The facial scrub is readily available in Tesco stores and reasonably priced as well. ~So why Cucumber and Vitamin E?~ The benefits of these two ingredients were previously discussed in one of my previous reviews, link provided below. Please feel free to visit the review for more details. tesco-hydrating-night-cream-with-cucumber-extract/1703798/ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. ©hildah11 September 2013

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          19.09.2013 23:29
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          High performing iron, good iron for the price.Hope this iron will remain my friend for many years.

          ~RUSSELL HOBBS STEAMGLIDE 15081 STEAM IRON~ My iron recently packed up so I had to get a replacement quickly as I can't do without one. Sad as it might sound, I am extremely fussy with the condition of the clothes I wear and I can't stand creases on my clothes. I therefore have to iron most of my clothes, but mainly those which need ironing. When our former iron packed, we used my daughter's typically student sized iron but it was a non starter so I asked my husband to get one on his way from work and should say his choice took me by surprise, he brought an iron much dearer than I was expecting --- Russell Hobbs Steam Glide (Model 15081). My husband does iron once in a while so my guess is that he was considering something he will feel comfortable using as well. By the way, I do not have a dryer. ~OVERVIEW~ ~Packaging and Visibility~ The iron comes in a predominantly card board box with large pictures of the iron in its real colours clearly visible on two sides of the box and several pictures which highlight the amazing features of this iron printed on every side and right round the box except on the bottom side. The brand logo "Russell Hobbs" and the marketing trade mark phrase "Steam Gliding" printed in big clear print. Inside the box you find the iron, the water jug, the instruction booklet which is in English and packaging material to hold the iron in place in the box. As a product on the market, it does stand out on the shop shelves and you can't miss it. ~Description and appearance~ The iron is generally a steam iron with added features to make it unique. It is blue, white and grey colours. The main body is blue and white, with a grey ceramic soleplate and a striped grey and white power cable. The brand logo Russell Hobs is clearly visible on both sides of the iron, more towards the bottom part on the heel and the "Steamglide" trade mark is printed slightly above the logo. The iron is quite study, just an ideal weight for an iron. It is quite trendy and definitely fits in with the current generation. I know one might say looks on an iron are not that critical but it has to be something I will like to be associated with when using. It is not too heavy at all to move around. It had a fairly flat end which allows it to sit steadily when left upright position. ~The cable~ The cord is fairly long, ~ 200 cm and wraps around the base of the iron which also makes it look neat and tidy when not in use. Just ensure the iron is cold before you do this. . ~The handle~ The reasonably wide and looks good as well as being easy to grip. The top part of the handle is made of soft plastic for easy comfortably grip during ironing. ~Operation features~ -3 temperature control settings operated by using the temperature control button: Cool Warm Hot (maximum) -Two steam control settings operated by the steam control knob: No steam High steam -Three steam spray mechanisms No steam for dry ironing Vertical steaming from the steam vents located on the bottom of the iron along the soleplate Horizontal steaming from the spray nozzle vent ~Other features as listed by the manufacturer~ -Dry / Steam/ Spray & burst -Powerful vertical steam -Self cleaning function -Easy fill 350ml water tank -Variable steam -Vertical steam -Soft touch handle & dial -2 m cord -2400 watts -Ceramic soleplate ~MY EXPERIENCE~ ~My wish list for an ideal iron~ Light weight to carry and use: Generally a heavy iron should ideally work quite well in smoothing out creases but for health reasons an iron that's not too heavy as this can strain the hand. The sole plate - this is the bottom bit is the one which does most of the job. It has to be wide and smooth and preferably ceramic. The wider it is the better as you only need a few moves over any garment and it's done, rather than going over a garment over and over again. Reasonably long cable and flexible as well so avoid the irritation of tangling cable whilst ironing. Easy to use and reachable control knobs for easy adjusting whilst ironing. Reasonably priced and within my budget normally around £20 to £25 but I would normally also be on the lookout for sales and offers. I would buy any iron irrespective of brand if it meets my requirements but also cautious to check for well known and respected brands. ~Use of the iron~ The iron comes already assembled and ready for use. If you have used other steam irons before, this is not very different and the symbols on the irons are mostly self explanatory. If not then I would recommend taking a bit of time to go through the instruction manual. Before use, you just have to remove additional protection like the paper sleeve which protects the soleplate and the diagram paper attached to the 3 pin plug. The control knobs on the iron are with easy reach and do what you expect them to do as indicated by the symbols. The dial temperature control knob works well and is easy to turn from one position to another without sticking. It clicks when you dial and reach a marked temperature position and activates the thermostat to regulate temperature at the required position. ~The guzzling and puffing power ~ The water tank opening is located in an ideal position, in the front of the iron and is large enough to allow you to pour water without unnecessary spillage. It is best to fill in the water using the jug provided rather than take the iron to a tap of water. Avoid this as this is dangerous especially if water gets in places it is not supposed to. The tank holds ~350 ml. It is recommended that you fill in the tank when the iron is switched off and on dry function. How much the iron will guzzle the water and how many times you refill the tank will depend on what you are ironing. I tend to find that I use steam ironing and the shot of steam function when ironing cotton garments and linen which need high temperatures. When I do my weekly or fortnightly iron, I tend to have a lot so I always keep my kitchen jug full of water close by. I pour the water into the iron jug for pouring into the iron as and when required. This saves me several trips to the tap to refill the small jug which come with the iron. I find steam ironing quite easy and ideal as it helps to smooth out the creases. How often you refill the water tank depends on the type of clothes you iron. If you are ironing cottons which need high temperature and continuous steaming, then you will need to refill more often. ~Broad, flat and smooth bottom is good~ The ceramic soleplate is large and has a nice smooth finish which makes the gliding easier whilst it is doing its job. A few swift manoeuvres over on the garment with very little effort, and the job is done minimising ironing time and stress to me doing the ironing. As you will know, it's easier to start on a lower temperature and increase as you go because irons take a long while to cool. ~Long and flexible cable~ The iron cable is fairly long ~ 2 metres long and fairly flexible through the 360degree rotation. Despite the length, the cable is still not long enough for me. I don't like being tucked away in a corner or in solitude when doing my ironing. I prefer to be in my living room watching one of my favourite DVDs whilst ironing or interacting with the rest of the family. This way the ironing becomes more bearable. Unfortunately the power plugs in my lounge are a bit hidden so I usually use an extension cable to give me some flexibility. Whilst ironing, it is wise to avoid over twisting the cable and checking once in awhile for twisting which can be damaging to the iron. ~AVAILABILITY AND PRICE~ Currys: £19.99 Robert Dyas: was £39.99 but now £19.99 Tesco direct: was £40.00 but now £17.50 Debenhams £23.00 Although my husband didn't tell me where he bought the iron, I suspect it's either from Robert Dyas or Tesco as he usually visits these shops. ~SOME HANDY TIPS~ Before ironing and to avoid damaging your garments, always refer to the garment textile care symbols which always come attached to garments to determine if the garment should be ironed, if so the use the recommended temperature for ironing. I normally sort my laundry as this makes my ironing chore swift and less stressful. When ironing, I always start with the low temperature setting and iron garments in that order whilst adjusting the temperature upwards as you go. The iron heats up quickly, which is good to avoid wasting time. Steaming is mainly recommended at the high temperature setting. Compared to heating up, it takes a bit longer for the iron to cool down, hence wasting time if you jump from one temperature extreme to another. Random switching from one temperature extreme to another can damage garments and is also a waste of electricity so costing money. I usually find that a cool iron is usually sufficient enough for most general ironing. I normally do the self clean exercise at least once a week just to reduce lime scale build up. ~SAFETY~ When not in use, ensure that the iron is sitting securely in its resting position. The iron comes with a protective thermal 13A fuse which will blow if it overheats. Although the instructions say children from 8 years can use the iron with supervision, personally, my opinion is that it is too early considering the risk involved. For me I would say maybe from 10 years onwards. ~Summary~ A high performing iron, good iron for the price. I just hope this iron will remain my friend for many years to come. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating! hildah11: September 2013

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            01.08.2013 01:15
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            You can press & seal in the freshness or just store stuff

            BACO PRESS 'N' SEAL SANDWICH BAGS ~Why I bought them~ Once in a while I usually cook and bake a lot and freeze some of the food for later use. I also buy vegetable, fruits and meat on offer and apportion it into handy portions for freezing. I just find freezing very handy and cost effective so I am always on the lookout for good quality and food storage bags. I have used various types mainly from Tesco but occasionally from other shops as well. Some have been good and some disappointing. I came across the Baco Press 'n' Seal resealable sandwich bags, I had not used these before so I decided to give them a try. ~Availability & Price~ The food bags are manufactured by Baco Consumer Products Ltd., UK. "Baco Consumer Products Limited are leading suppliers in the catering food wraps sector" (http://www.baco.co.uk). The company manufactures a variety of plastic kitchen accessories including storage bags. As I often shop in Tesco, I would have bought these sandwich bags from Tesco but my local Tesco does not stock them so I bought the bags from Waitrose during one of my rare visits to this shop. These bags come in a white carton box with sky blues background design. The name and the picture of the product inside are clearly visible on the box. Each box cost £1.35 for a pack of 50 medium sized transparent bags. The pack contains 50 individual bags which are 19 x 21.5 cm. The unique feature of these bags is that they are self sealing so they don't come with additional accessories for tying etc. ~How to use the bags~ The bags are fairly easy to use, they are easy to open and not as slippery and stuck together as other plastic bags I have used before. To open just pull top edges of bag apart, add the contents, expel excess air, press seals together and run fingers firmly along green lines to secure the seals "Press 'n' Seal" as the name suggests. They are easy to press and seal as long as they are not overfilled. Bear in mind that food or things expand a bit in volume during freezing so leave a bit of space, do not overfill the bags. Remember to allow food to cool first before putting in the bags and also before freezing. The bags can be used in microwaves during thawing/defrosting and do not tear during thawing but they are not suitable for re-heating or cooking food in the microwave or a conventional oven. ~Uses~ The bags have medium thickness and average strength so one needs to be careful with weight when loading with food stuff. The bags have a unique seal that keeps contents fresh and prevents exchange of odours in and out of the bags and also maintain the moisture content of the food, especially when used in the fridge. They can be used for virtually anything as long as there are no sharp edges which will tear the bag. The bags can be used for various purposes: * for general storage in the food cupboard for storing dry foods * in the fridge for storing leftover food and any food after the original package has been opened in order to keep the food fresh and maintain moisture levels, e.g. cheese, bakery products like buns, cakes etc * as sandwich bags as the name suggests and are ideal for packed lunches and with summer upon us for picnics too. I also use mine to carry fresh fruits to work. By far better than fiddling around with food wrap * for storing non-food products such as hair accessories, crayons and small toys I have realised that these bags are a bit small for freezing food portions for my family. I would need two of these bags to freeze portions enough for the family which is a bit of an inconvenience. Unlike other food and freezer bags, these bags do not have specific labelling panels for indicating the contents in the bag but it is possible to write on the bags with a permanent marker. Maybe the manufacture didn't consider this to be important as the indication is that they are marketed as sandwich bags although they can be used for other purposes. ~Safety & Environment-wise~ Like any other plastic bags and to avoid accidental suffocation, please keep these bags away from babies, young children and pets. The carton box is recyclable and the bags can be recycled with other plastic bags at plastic bag recycling sites like those located outside superstores, my local Tesco has one. ~Summary~ Idea storage bags for any family and convenient for storage of small quantities. Great for keeping leftovers, for sealing in the freshness in packed lunches. For school kids, any leftover sandwich bits can be stored in the bags as rubbish bag then resealed to stop the rubbish making a mess of the lunch boxes. My rating: 4 out of 5 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating ©hildah11: July 2013

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              08.07.2013 22:54
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              Free Standing Crome Plated Toilet Roll Holder

              ~WHY I BOUGHT THIS TOILET ROLL HOLDER~ I needed a way to store my toilet rolls neatly and within easy reach so I bought this toilet roll holder more than10 years ago from one of the bargain High Street shops which sell house hold goods. At this point I can't remember how much it was but I can assure you it was a bargain price. ~DESCRIPTION & KEY FEATURES~ The design is slightly different from the one shown on the image. The toilet roll holder is free standing and made of chrome plated slightly thick metal rod. From the design, it would seem as though just one metal rod was used, bent creatively to create the central loop for the roll holder and then an S-shaped loop for the base stand, very economically designed. Dimensions: 39 cm high; 15 cm wide It can hold up to 4 toilet rolls staked on top of each other. Because of its simple design, it can serve a multi-purpose and can also be easily used as a kitchen roll holder. ~PACKAGING, AVAILABILITY & PRICE~ The roll holder comes free standing with no packaging, so what you see is what you get. No assembling is required. In March 2013, a fairly similar one was available from Amazon and distributed by Apollo at £4.69 + free UK delivery. ~EASE OF USE AND BENEFITS~ It is fairly easy to use and does not need/have a manual. All it has is a label with a bit of information on care and use. There are so many different designs of toilet roll holder out there, some are even combinations with other accessories like toilet brush holders but this one is just a simple design which fulfils the purpose. It is a good space saver too; up to 4 rolls can be stored in an upright position and within easy reach and avoids people having to open cupboards in search of toilet rolls. It is light weight and easy to carry. It is fairly easy to clean; all you need to do is wipe it with a damp cloth. Not recommended for dishwasher use. The chrome plating gives it a nice shiny finish and this silver colour fits in well with some of my bath room accessories. ~SAFETY~ The roll holder is fairly sturdy, does not topple over or buckle easily. Because of the light weight, it causes no harm even if it falls on the floor. The chrome plating should guard it against rusting so keeping it nice looking for long. ~OVER ALL OPINION~ This toilet roll holder looks nice and stylish for my needs. It does the job perfectly and is a good space saver too. This one has lasted more than 10 years and it is still faithfully serving its purpose. Because of age, I am starting to see some signs of rusting along the base but just like anything plated, the chrome plating does not last forever. After 10 year of use, I cannot complain. Yes I would recommend it and rating 4/5 for me. Thank you for reading and rating ©hildah11, July 2013

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              06.06.2013 19:42
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              Five stars: excellent illumination, light weight, very affordable (depending on source), durable goo

              ~Why I bought this torch? ~ I like to have a few torches scattered around the house in strategic places just in case they are needed urgently, in case of a power cut. I know this rarely happens in the UK, but this is just the way I was brought up in another part of the world. It is always handy to be prepared when one is needed. I always place one along our long corridor on the window seal and this always comes handy to use to light up the cupboard underneath our stair case when I take the electric and gas meter readers so I tend to use this frequently for that purpose. Last year my daughter dropped one of the torches from up the stairs, so was not working and had to be replaced. ~Product description - Size, Weight, Appearance and Special features ~ The torch is made of toughened red plastic with contrasting black portions. It is quite visible compared to most of the torches I have had in the past which were predominantly black. It is about 25 cm long and feels light to hold. It weighs about 370 g with batteries included. The weight is not too much to handle even for children. Because of the light weight, it is perfect even for traveling and it won't take much space and add more weight to your baggage. The torch has a black rubberised sleeve which is secured round the full length of the torch. This is the rubber grip which makes it easier to hold the torch. It also has a black woven wrist strap, which makes it easier to secure the torch around your wrist so helps not to drop it as it can dangle on your wrist without causing much discomfort. **This is together with the rubber grip are really good features which protect the longevity of the torch by reducing the risk of the torch slipping off your hand and dropping. The torch requires three 3 D batteries and these come already loaded in the torch. I think this is very generous of the manufacturer to include batteries which is really handy rather than having to buy a torch and only to realise that batteries are not included. The torch has 10 small LED white light bulbs instead of the standard one big light bulb as in most standard torches. ~ Availability and Price ~ The torch is available in most outlets which sell torches and on line like on Amazon. At the time of purchase last year, the torch was priced on Amazon, for £8.40 (excluding postage) which was a shock for me as I had bought mine for just for £1.25 from my local Tesco supermarket. Real bargain. What a difference and what could be the plausible explanation for this? This goes to show that shopping around pays. ~Operation and performance - does it work?~ The torch comes with an instruction tag attached to the torch via the key ring slot which also holds the wrist strap. If you are used the other types of torches, it might be worthy just reading the few instruction lines otherwise you may make a fool of yourself. Generally it is fairly easy to operate and of course some people might easily work out how to use it. This particular torch is operated on a completely different system; it does not have the on/off button like other torches. You turn it on/off with a simple twist of the head section and the direction for the twisting is indicated on the torch just below the head. Firstly you need to remove the plastic tab from the battery compartment which separates the LED connections from the battery connections. **In my view this is a good safety feature to ensure the torch is not accidentally switched on whilst in the shop and left on which will cause the batteries to run out. You then need to ensure the batteries connections are correct as per the diagram on the instruction tag. Twisting the torch head clockwise will switch it on and anti-clockwise to slightly loosen the head will switch off the torch. Really easy and no fear that the on/off knob will malfunction one day. The torch works perfectly well and the LED produces a nice wide floody beam. The light beam is white and bright and good enough for general seeing. I read in one review that torches with LED bulbs are brilliant for longer distances (more than about 4m). I have not really tested this myself as I would not venture out at night that much. My daughter however used it recently when she went for a school outdoor trip. She really liked it and in her opinion it is stylish as well and ideal for girls. The fact that it was light to carry, it didn't add much weight to her back pack unlike the ones I used to buy for her. During the school trip, they went for evening walks out in the country side and she said its illumination was very good so she was really impressed with this torch. She also liked the wrist trap as she said it was easier to hold the torch that way without the fear it would fall off her hands. ~Durability~ I have had this torch for almost a year now with no problem at all. I was afraid that it would come back bashed or malfunctioning when my daughter took it for her school trip. This is what used to always happen with the other torches, but no, it was still intact, a few scratches but working. At the timing of wring this review, the torch is still working perfectly and I haven't changed the batteries either so battery efficiency is really good. ~Conclusion~ This is a very good quality, affordable, durable and practical torch. It does the job and comes with other bonus points too. The torch is not too bulky so can be stored anywhere, in the car glove box, drawers, back pack bag etc. I highly recommend it and as embarrassing as it sounds I went back in December and bought two more, real bargains for a quality product. I should say I was really surprised by the price £1.25 as I was expecting more considering that the torch uses LED bulbs which are generally meant to be more expensive than conventional bulbs. ~So what is so special about the LED bulbs?~ By the way, LED stands for light-emitting diode. If you are keen to know more like I was and for detailed information about the advantages of using LED bulbs, please visit the link below: http://www.which.co.uk/energy/energy-saving-products/guides/led-lights-explained ~Summary~ Five stars: excellent illumination, light weight, very affordable (depending on source), durable good quality torch which is fairly stylish as well. Highly recommended. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. © hildah11 - June 2013

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                25.05.2013 23:43
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                Great little hand mixer which does the job without a fuss

                WILKO EVERYDAY VALUE HAND MIXER I have owned my previous electric hand mixer for more than 10 years now and it has mainly been used by me on those occasions I decide to bake at home. Over the years I managed to get my girls interested in cooking and baking and we got into the mode of trying different cake recipes from the various cake books we have with exciting results each time. Recently the girls have really shown an interest in baking on their own, which I am really proud of but they hate using this mixer because it is rather heavy and has become rather battered over the years. To avoid disappointing them and undoing the interest which had taken years to build, I decided to get another hand mixer for them. I was not prepared to spend much so I bought one from my local Wilkinson High Street store - the Wilko Everyday Value Hand Mixer. ~PACKAGING, PRODUCT DESCRIPTION AND WHAT YOU PAY FOR~ The mixer comes in a yellow box typical of Wilko everyday value products and also comes with a user guide explaining how to use it and how to maintain it. The mixer is made of white hardened plastic casing and comes with one set of beaters. I should say this came as a surprise as I was really expecting two sets of beaters like the other hand mixers available on the market, but then for the price I bought it for, maybe I was expecting too much. It works with the main electricity supply and comes already fitted with a power cable which has a 3-pin 3A fused plug. Located on the top dorsal side, is the grip handle, three knobs, the speed setting, the turbo and the ejector knob. The handle has a grey strip which nicely contrasts the predominantly white background. The mixer has five speed settings (0 to 5) making it easy to mix a variety of stuff at varying speeds. It also has a turbo knob for when very fast speeds are required. At the bottom, the mixer has two slot holes into which you push in the beaters one in each hole. At the front end, there are five ventilator slits; I suppose to allow in air for the small fan which cools the small motor inside when it is working hard to spin the mixers hence producing some heat in the process. The mixer looks really cute and once outside the box, it can match even the expensive brands. There is no big Wilko logo as you would expect with other brands so unless you look closely underneath you won't know it is a Wilko brand, good or bad? I leave that for you to decide. The manufacturer brand name, information on the wattage, disposing and more of the small print is located underneath the mixer. It is available from Wilko.com or from Wilkinson stores located in most High Streets for a bargain price of £4.99. If you order online, I would suggest you opt for collection from your nearest Wilko store, this is free, otherwise home delivery will cost you £3.50 so the mixer will cost you ~ £8.50. Not a bargain anymore at this price. ~OPERATION, EASE OF USE & CLEANING~ I have not really used the manual as the mixer is very easy to operate and especially if you have used one before so the manual is tucked away nicely in our family manual file, just in case its needed one day. We use this mixer mainly for various cake mixes in our ongoing exploration into different cakes but my daughters have also used it for pancakes and it worked well as well. The cakes we have made so far have all come out well texture wise, which shows the quantities and the mixing of the ingredients including incorporation of air was done properly. You have to ensure the beaters are properly fitted and secured into the slot holes before you start the mixing, sadly there is no indicator light to give you the go ahead for this you so you just have to manually be satisfied that they are ok once they click into position. Once satisfied, switch on the mains first and then move the speed knob to the speed setting you require. From experience, I would say, start the mixing at slow speed to avoid splashing the mixture all over the place and increase speed gradually as the ingredients are nicely being blended together. How high you go speed wise depends on what you are making and also your experience in using the mixer, I tend to like gently mixing so I rarely use the turbo speed. The speed knob is conveniently located very close to the handle so can easily be operated by the thumb of the same hand holding the mixer whilst the other hand holds the bowl with the mixture. I am right handed so not sure how this would work for left handed people as the speed increases from left to right. The mixer is light enough (~ 730g) to be lifted and operated with one hand and even the movement during mixing is gentle to the arm. Also ensure you have enough mixture in the bowl so that the beaters at least don't just grind the bottom of the bowl. There is a smell of metal rubbing against each other on the first few occasions of using the mixer, don't worry as the smell gradually gets less and less with constant use. Once the mixing is complete, remove the excess mixture on the beaters and eject them off the mixer using the ejection button. As for the cleaning, generally with baking, it's advisable to soak the bowl and all the utensils used immediately and to wash off everything soon after you load the mixture in the oven. This way it is easy to clean the beaters before the mixture dries on them. The mixer can be stored in upright position when not in use so saving a lot of space. It is therefore ideal for a small kitchen as it can be stored away in the cupboard without taking too much space. ~SAFETY CONSIDERATION~ The mixer comes with a fused 3-pin plug already fitted so fiddling around with electricity connections. It is run by a 150W motor so a bit powerful than the 125W motor in most standard mixers hand mixers. The cable is thin and rather very short (~80cm) not really good in my view as you have to be working quite close to the power source. The mixer tends to be a bit noisy and the noise increases with increasing speed as well but you eventually get used to it. I was shocked when I realised that the beaters can still spin even though they are not securely in position, this can be dangerous. The mixer should be kept away from the reach of children especially during use. During cleaning, do not immerse in water so clean by wiping with a damp cloth instead. This mixer like other electrical gadgets cannot be disposed of in the ordinary rubbish bin, it has to be taken to the designated recycling sites. The box can however be recycled widely at any paper recycling site. ~CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS~ I don't regret buying this mixer at all although I was a bit apprehensive at first because of the price. It is actually good; it does the job so I am glad I tried it. My wish list for improvements: * A longer power cable * Two different sets of beaters to accommodate more recipes * Safety devise/cut off when the beaters are not securely in position This is a very good value for money and really a handy gadget in my kitchen. Great little machine which does the job without a fuss. My daughters love this hand mixer. Yes I recommend it as it does the job but I give it 3 stars. For more information visit: http://www.wilko.com/blenders-mixers+food-processors ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating This review is also found on other review sites under the same user name. hildah11 - May 2013

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                  06.05.2013 13:52
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                  Make your face look forever young with Tesco Hydrating Night Cream with Cucumber Extract & Vitamin E

                  ~Why I bought this cream~ I am a regular user of face creams and I like products which moisturise my face. I also use moisturising facial night creams as well. I like the fact that they can work whilst I am asleep. I do not wear makeup when I go to bed, so there is no interference to what they are supposed to do. Not all face creams suit my requirements as some tend to be rather greasy. I particularly like face products with cucumber for their healthy related benefits. I have used various face creams with cucumber but of late the general affordable ones have been a bit hard to come by and when they reappeared on the shop shelves, they were a bit more expensive than before. Recently I noticed a new range of cucumber face products in Tesco and for fear of not finding them again I horded a few. Luckily they are still available almost five months later and hope they won't disappear again. This review is for one of the products: Tesco Hydrating Night Cream with Cucumber Extract (& Vitamin E) ~Availability and Price~ The cream is manufactured in the UK for Tesco stores Ltd. It is just one of the cucumber based face products they manufacture. Being a Tesco product, it is mainly available in Tesco stores including the Tesco online stores. In the UK, the cream is available in 50 ml bottles for just £1.00. ~ Packaging and Visibility~ The cream comes in a simple white round plastic jar with a white standard screw on cap which covers an opening wide enough to allow about 3 middle fingers in. You have to use your finger(s) for scooping out the cream for application. The bottle is also made of good quality plastic which does not crack easily. The cream is located with other face creams and cleansing products, you can't miss the white bottle. Environment wise, there is no extra packaging with this cream, so what you see is what you get. ~Composition and Application~ The cream is especially designed to help smoothen and moisturise the skin. The main ingredients include cucumber fruit extract (Cucumis sativus) and vitamin E in addition to the other additives and chemicals. The ingredients in the cream seem well balanced. The cream is white in colour and has a light smooth non runny balanced texture. The cream does not come with an applicator so you have to use your fingers to scoop the amount you need from the bottle. It is fairly easy to apply and but as usual a bit of massaging into the skin always gives best results. It is easily absorbed into the skin and leaves the skin with a refreshing smooth moisturised feeling. Because it is a night cream, I usually apply generous amounts without worry as I will be going to bed. I apply it after cleaning my face preferably with other cucumber based products but can be any product which cleans my face to allow the night cream to do its work. I pay special attention to the area around my eyes and also apply it to my neck as well. According to the manufacturer, it's meant to be suitable for all skin types. ~Scent~ The smell is nice, lightly fragranced with cucumber smell from the cucumber extract. The smell is not overpowering at all. ~Environment wise~ It was not tested on animals so it's good to know that no animal suffered for my beauty but if we consider that plants have feeling too, then yes the cucumber plant really suffered! The bottled is made of plastic which can be widely recycled. ~Conclusion~ I love the smooth moisturising feeling of this cream on my skin, makes me feel good but more important makes me look young all the time. More so it works without any disturbance whilst I am asleep. ~ The benefits, so why Cucumber and Vitamin E?~ The information below is based on a bit of research. ~~Cucumber~~ Cucumber (Cucumis sativus) is a vegetable that belongs to the gourd family, Cucurbitaceae, which includes pumpkins, melons and squashes. There are at least 10 reported human health benefits which come with use of cucumbers and some of these include: * skin and nail care * stimulate hair growth * reduce puffiness of skin below the eyes * relieve skin irritations and sunburns * keep the body hydrated * beneficial for teeth and gum and relieves bad breath * reduce cholesterol and control blood pressure * promote health joints and relieve gout and arthritis pain * act as a diuretic and encourages the elimination of waste products from the body through urination * relieve diabetes * aid in fighting cancer * aids digestion * aid in treating tapeworms * aid in weight loss Sources: http://www.naturalnews.com/036769_cucumbers_health_benefits_rehydration.html http://www.healthonlinezine.info/15-health-benefits-of-cucumber.html **I will focus more on its use in the cosmetic industry for health skin and hair care. ~~~Skin care~~~ The high water content (96% water content), presence of vitamins A, B & C and the presence of certain minerals like magnesium, potassium, and silica make cucumbers an essential part of skin care. Facial masks containing cucumber juice can be used for skin tightening. Ascorbic acid and caffeic acid present in cucumbers can bring down the water retention rate which in turn diminishes the puffiness and swelling under the eyes. That's why you see people placing a slice of cucumber over puffy eyes, its anti-inflammatory properties help reduce puffiness Cucumber skin also can bring relief to the skin caused by sunburn or windburn. ~~~Nail care~~~ The high silica content of cucumber also helps to prevent splitting and spoiling of nails of the fingers and toes. ~~~Hair growth~~~ Cucumber contains silicon and sulphur and thus a regular intake of cucumber can help promote healthy hair growth. For best results, mix cucumber juice with the juices of carrot, lettuce or spinach. ~~Vitamin E~~ Vitamin E is a fat-soluble antioxidant and its scientific name is tocopherol and was recognized in 1968 as an essential vitamin for humans. It is most abundant in wheat germ oil, but also found in nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, leafy greens, and fortified cereals. Scientists estimate that as much as two-thirds of human vitamin E intake comes from salad oils, margarine, and shortening, while the rest comes from vegetables and various grains. Vitamin E is used in many products for skin and nail treatments. Benefits include: * my favourite - preventing premature aging and development of wrinkles by boosting collagen production & supporting new skin cell growth and speeding cell regeneration * Vitamin E added to lotions, creams, and other skin care products, as well as taken orally, plays a role in the anti-aging of skin. It helps skin look younger by reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles * sun protection and sun burn treatment - because of its antioxidant activity, vitamin e is vital in protecting skin cells from ultra violet light, pollution, drugs, and other elements that produce cell damaging free radicals * Vitamin E lotions provide some benefit in preventing and treating sunburns. These lotions protect the epidermis layer of the skin from early stages of ultra violet light damage * promoting health nails and cuticles by helping to keep nails moisturised & flexible * treatment of skin diseases and promoting healing of the skin- Vitamin E can aid in the treatment of various skin diseases or skin conditions * aids in the formation of red blood cells and improves blood circulation Sources: http://www.healthy-skincare.com/benefits-of-vitamin-e.html http://www.nailsmag.com/article/91584/secret-ingredient-vitamin-e ** So, with all these benefits I am really impressed with this product. Believe me when you are over XX age wise and people think you still look 21, that's a compliment. I checked on the internet and was shocked to see that some cucumber based face products cost from £5-£30; sorry I will stick to my £1.00 one which is I can buy from my local supermarket. Why should I pay more for something else when this product does the job for me? I give it all the marks and stars available but I hope they will produce bigger jars soon instead of the 50 ml. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. ©hildah11 May 2013

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                    26.04.2013 22:44
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                    Softening and moisturising cocoa butter lotion with added benefits of vitamin E

                    ~Why I bought this lotion~ I am a regular user of body lotions and I like products which moisturise my skin. Not all body lotions fit my requirements as some tend to be rather greasy. I have also used the Tesco range of body lotions, with a different verdict on each of them. Recently I noticed a new packaging amongst the Tesco body lotions. I wanted to see if this was just a change in the packaging or actual product improvement so I bought the new version Tesco Cocoa Butter Body Lotion. ~Availability and Price~ The lotion is manufactured in the E.U for Tesco stores Ltd. It is just one of the product ranges they manufacture. Being a Tesco product, it follows it is only available in Tesco stores including the Tesco online stores. In the UK, the lotion is available in 400 ml bottles for just £1.15 (29 pence per 100ml). Real bargain! See link below: http://www.tesco.com/groceries/Product/Details/?id=258420712 ~ Packaging and Visibility~ The lotion comes in a simple brown oval plastic bottle which tapers upwards ending with a small nozzle opening. The design and overall shape of the bottle is good and well balanced so the bottle does not tip over. The bottle is also made of good quality plastic which is soft to press and also crack free. The lid operates on a push-on snap hinge closure system and it comes in two components, the whole lid with another flip up cap attached to it by a hinge. When you squeeze the bottle, the lotion is decanted from the bottle through a tiny nozzle. The flip up lid fits and clips securely around the nozzle. Even though the bottle tapers upwards, it can still be left standing upside down on the lid as with other lotion bottles so helps to get the lotion towards the opening when the lotion is at low level or about to run out. It is located with other lotions but it is clearly visible; you can't miss the brown bottle. Environment wise, there is no extra packaging with this lotion, so what you see is what you get. The bottled is made of plastic which can be widely recycled. ~Composition and Application~ The lotion is especially designed to help smoothen and moisturise the skin. The main ingredients include cocoa butter and vitamin E in addition to the other additives and chemicals. The ingredients in the lotion seem well balanced. The lotion is a bit light and non-greasy. It is creamish in colour and has a smooth non runny consistence. The lotion pours out well from the bottle. It is fairly easy to apply but a bit of massaging into the skin and paying specially attention to dry areas, always gives best results. It is easily absorbed into the skin and leaves the skin with a refreshing smooth but non-greasy feeling. The lotion keeps the skin fairly moisturised throughout the day. ~Scent~ The smell is nice, lightly fragranced with mild chocolate-like aroma from the cocoa butter. The smell is not overpowering at all and the lotion is basically unisex so can be used by both gender. The smell can also be masked by the smell of the perfume you decide to wear which is good so there is no clash in the smells. Like everything associated with people, the lotion may not be suitable for everyone. ~Conclusion~ I love the smooth moisturising feeling of this lotion on my skin, makes me feel good all the time. It has been very popular in my house and everyone in my family is now using this lotion. ~The benefits, so why Cocoa butter with Vitamin E?~ The information below is based on a bit of research. ~~~Cocoa butter~~~ Cocoa butter is a natural moisturiser extracted from cocoa beans. It is used in the pharmaceutical industry in the making of ointments and toiletry but also in the food industry for making chocolates, biscuits. It is renowned skin moisturising and hydrating properties which help to keep the skin healthy. Various benefits include: * reducing stretch marks especially in pregnant women * treatment of eczema and dermatitis as it helps the skin to retain moisture Cocoa butter ointment is highly recommended for people with dry skin. It can cause allergies (rashes) to some people especially those allergic to nuts. ~~~Vitamin E~~~ Vitamin is an antioxidant and is used in many products for skin and nail treatments. Benefits include: * promoting healing of the skin * promoting health nails and cuticles * preventing premature aging and development of wrinkles by: ------boosting collagen production ------ supporting new skin cell growth and speeding cell regeneration With all these benefits, why should I pay more for something else? I give it all the marks and stars available. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. ©hildah11 April 2013

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                    02.03.2013 10:46
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                    A real bargain kitchen roll holder.

                    ~WILKO KITCHEN ROLL HOLDER~ ~~WHY I BOUGHT THIS KITCHEN ROLL HOLDER~~ My previous kitchen roll holder was a bit unique, it had a glass base. Last year I was extremely disappointed when it accidentally dropped to the kitchen floor and the base shattered into pieces. Needless to say it just missed my foot and I had tiny pieces of glass all over on my kitchen floor. All I had left was a metal rod which could not do the job, of holding my kitchen rolls. Because it was dear to me it took me sometime to replace it. When I finally decided to do so, I wasn't prepared to spend much anymore so I compared a few from the high street shops and settled for this one from Wilkinson. ~~DESCRIPTION & KEY FEATURES~~ The roll holder is made of chrome plated thin metal rods. Four metal rods are joined together in a rectangular shape to form the main stem frame instead of the hollow metal rod which forms the main frame in a lot of roll holders. The base is also made up of concentric metal rings attached to the central main frame and to two side shields. The shields are located opposite each other and one is almost double the height of the other. Below the metal base are three round metal balls which act as the feet for the roll holder so helping to raise it above the ground/work surface. Dimensions: 33 cm high 17cm wide 21 cm and 10 cm high (2 side shields) ~~PACKAGING, AVAILABILITY & PRICE~~ The roll holder comes free standing with no packaging, so what you see is what you get. No assembling is required. It is distributed in the UK by Wilkinson and the bargain price in February 2013 was £2.75. www.wilkinsonplus.com. ~~EASE OF USE AND BENEFITS~~ It is fairly easy to use and does not have a manual. All it has is a label with a bit of information on care and use, wilko promise on exchange and returns and the manufacturer/distributor details. The roll holder has a design different from the common ones but universal enough to hold most of the standard kitchen rolls. The side shields serve the purpose of keeping the kitchen roll in place and from unwinding on its own but they also make it easy to unwind the roll whilst in position when needed. It is a good space saver too as the rolls can be stored, used and held in an upright position, rather than letting the roll lie down on the kitchen surface or in a drawer. It is very light weight and easy to carry. It is fairly easy to clean, all you need to do is wipe it with a damp cloth. The colour, silver, fits in well with the colour scheme in my kitchen. ~~SAFETY~~ The roll holder is fairly sturdy, does not topple over or buckle easily. Because of the light weight, it causes no harm even if it falls on the floor. The chrome plating should guard it against rusting so keeping it nice looking for long. ~~OVER ALL OPINION ~~ This roll holder looks nice and stylish for my needs. It does the job perfectly and is a good space saver too. This one will last and serve its purpose for as long I still need it. Yes I would recommend it and rating 5/5 for me. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating ©hildah, March 2013

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                  • Beldray Fan Heater / Heater / 47 Readings / 46 Ratings
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                    16.02.2013 10:27
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                    Does the job, warms the room.

                    BELDRAY FAN HEATER WHITE 2000W ~Why I bought the heater~ Our house has certain cold pockets and my daughter's bedroom is one of those rooms. Even with the central heating system on her room never seems to warm up to the same level compared to the other bedrooms. We tried all the magic tricks recommended including bleeding the radiators but still no improvement. It for this reason that I finally decided to venture out in search of a portable heater to supplement the heating in her room and I ended up buying the heater, the Beldray Fan Heater White 2000w from Wilkinson. ~Packaging, product description and specifications~ The fan heater comes packed in a box with a bit of extra packaging material. The box has the picture of the heater on both sides so you can see how it looks like before you buy. It also comes with a user guide explaining how to use and maintain it. ~Characteristic functional features~ * Made of white hardened plastic casing. * Freestanding with upright design * Two knobs in front, one for the adjustable thermostat and the other for the heat setting, two heat settings (1000w and 2000w) and a cold fan only setting. * Power indicator light which glows when the power is on * Carry handle for easy carrying * Safety cut out thermal device and overheat protection * Rubber feet for grip and a tilt switch which automatically switches off the heater when it is not stable or is tilted even accidentally. www.wilkinsonplus.com ~Additional specification~ The heater is manufactured by Beldray Limited, UK which also manufactures a variety of house hold gadgets. Like most electrical gadgets, it comes already assembled and ready for use. Further details as given by manufacturer: Maximum power capacity: 2000w Colour: White Size: 13cm X 27cm At the front and back, the heater has the vents for the fan aeration. In front of the heater there are thermostat control and the heat setting knobs and also a red light indicator which glows to show that the heater is on. At the base of the heater you find the non-slip rubber feet which give it a grip and keep it in position whilst in use. ~Operation and Ease of use~ Using the heater is easy, just place it on a flat surface and switch on the mains, adjust to the required heating level and the thermostat to the required regulatory position. When switched on, the heater starts heating the room immediately by blowing hot air. The time it takes to heat up the room depends on the size of the room so you feel much warmer when you are actually closer to the heater. The fan is very noisy and you can actually hear it from an adjacent room. It has only two heating settings so not much flexibility depending on how cold you feel that day but for a small heater maybe that's ideal anyway. It is small and light and has a carry handle so can be carried around the room/house fairly easily. My daughter puts it on so that it can preheat her room before she goes to bed and then switches it off when she goes to bed. The noise is a bit irritating so this alone prevents her from even attempting to leave it running when she goes in bed. ~Safety features~ The heater is equipped with some safety features which shows the manufacturer put some thought into this whilst designing the gadget. It has a safety cut out thermal device and overheat protection so it should automatically switch off if it overheats. I have not experienced this as we only use the heater for a short time but hopefully it works. The rubber feet give very good for grip and a tilt switch automatically switches off the heater when it is not stable or is tilted even accidentally. The cable is thick and flexible and the heater comes already fitted with an earthed 3-pin plug which is suitable for use in the UK. ~Other practical safety considerations~ The heater should be kept away from the reach of children especially during use and should not be left unattended for too long. The heater should be placed away at least a metre from flammable material. Always unplug from electric source when not in use. Do not move the heater around by pulling the cable, instead always use the carry handle. Do not cover whilst in use. ~Environment wise~ This heater like other electrical gadgets cannot be disposed of in the ordinary rubbish bin, it has to be taken to the designated recycling sites. The packaging material is however widely recyclable at most recycling sites. ~Conclusion~ I don't regret buying this heater at all although I was a bit apprehensive at first because of the price and the name which I wasn't really familiar with. It is actually good; it does the job so I am glad I tried it. . This is very good value for money. I got mine for £13.00 from my local Wilkinson. I have seen similar types of heaters from Tesco and Robert Dyas as well. The heater comes with a 1 year manufacture guarantee against mechanical and electrical defects. This guarantee starts from date of purchase so keep your receipt. It is really a handy gadget in my house especially as a quick way of making my daughter feel warm since the radiator in her room has let us down. I do appreciate that this is not a cost effective way electricity wise and I am sure my bill will be a bit higher because of this so we only use it sparingly but it's better than feeling cold and failing to sleep. I bought this heater 5 months ago and it's still working. Yes I recommend it as it does the job, 4/5 stars. Thank you for reading and rating ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ hildah11; Feb 2013

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                    09.02.2013 19:14
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                    Nice cosy warm feeling all in one suit.

                    LAZY COSY - ALL IN ONE SNUGGLE SUIT **This review is for the Lazy Cosy - All in One Snuggle Suit which looks very similar to the one shown in the picture. All in one suits have become very popular over the last few years and they come in various designs and names depending on where you buy them from. They are available from most high street shops which sell sleepwear as well as online shops. The price difference is so varied again depending on the source. ~Product Description and Design~ This all in one snuggle suit comes packed in a box covered with various pictures of the suit to show the full view back and front and the various design features. Like most clothing items manufactures assume the use is common sense so the suit does not come with a set of instructions. Basically this is an all in one suit which keeps you warm. It can be used as an indoor overall suit or can act as a pyjama set. It is made of soft fleece material which feels very warm and soft on the skin. This all in one snuggle suit has a hood secured to the rest of the suit and has draw strings to allow one to adjust the hood size to fit the head and face and to add onto to the warmth. It has a zip in the in front which is centrally located and runs from the neckline to just below the waist line position. This makes it easy and very flexible to put it on and remove it as there is lots of room for movement. There is another zip which runs across the back along the waistline and down the side to the hip level. After a while I figured out that this zip is useful mainly when you want to use the toilet, you don't have to remove the whole suit, just unzip this bit and zip it on again when the job is done. The suit has long sleeves also adding on to the warmth. The legs are also full length and open footed. It has two side pockets which are fairly deep to hold stuff and to keep your hands warm. ~Availability and Price~ I bought mine from The Works in December for £9.99 but they are sold out now. It was real value for money and I don't regret buying it at all. The suit comes in two sizes, medium and large and in three colours, black, red and pink. The sizes are quite big cuts and loose fitting giving a nice comfortable and flexible fitting. The suit is imported into the UK by The Works Store Limited (TWSL), B76 1RN. ~Why I bought this suit~ I used to envy my daughters in their suits (the Onesie) which they bought from one of the High Street shops. Their Onesies are pretty cool representing various animal characters so they have tails and ears but most important they are so warm. I really wanted one but without the animal character features so I was looking around for one and should say some of the prices I saw online were shocking. I used to wrap myself in a fleece blanket to keep warm but this was not a very practical solution. I was so delighted when I saw a whole lot of these snuggle suits in our local The Works Store in December 2012. I didn't really need to think twice before buying one. Mine is more formal and my daughters are a bit jealousy now, might have to buy some for them next time they are in stock. Sadly this particular version is currently out of stock even on The Works online store. I know there are lots of versions out there but a lot of them are very pricey compared to £9.99 I paid for mine. ~Advantages~ * Super soft fleece which gives a warmth and nice soft cosy feeling on the skin * Light weight so no heavy feeling when you have it on * Loose fitting sizes so plenty of room to easily snuggle in and out of the suit * Keeps most of the body covered for warmth and still allows flexibility and use of hands, legs and feet. * Easy care and machine washable at low temperature, 30oC, no ironing required * Ideal to wear throughout winter and for cool summer evenings * Nothing fancy like ears and tails which are not really meant for me * Not footed, has open foot area good for hygiene purposes but will still need slippers so can also be a disadvantage. ~Disadvantges~ * Limited colour choice * Limited size range * Sleeves and legs are not ribbed or elasticated so don't hold tightly and allow a bit of air breeze * Not sure it is ideal for men ~Summary of my experience~ This is a really nice suit even ideal for an adult like me. Fleece is generally a warm material so this snuggle suit is very warm and comfortable. It keeps me warm and allows me flexibility to continue with my activities. I feel like I am covered by a fleece blanket but I find it also funny that I look more like a big baby in a baby grow suit. Overall, I am very impressed with the suit and would highly recommend it. I have managed to tackle this winter as I snuggle into my warm suit all the time, feeling warm and comfortable to sit and relax so no need to keep the heating on all the time for warmth hence also reducing the cost of my heating bill as well. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. hildah11: February 2013

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                    • Xarim.com / Online Shop / 21 Readings / 20 Ratings
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                      08.02.2013 10:56
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                      Ideal for unique gifts

                      XARIM.COM Early last year I was tasked with a responsibility to shop around for ideal gifts to give guest speakers for our church ladies conference. I should say, it was really a hard task as I really wanted something of sentimental value. I also wanted something which would remind them of the conference so I was thinking of something with the logo of the conference imprinted on it but not the usual such as mugs, T-shirts, but something visible and one they would keep as an ornament. An idea about the printed gift plates suddenly came to mind, I had seen several ornamental plates around but where could I have one printed with a personalised image? This was no ordinary task as none of the High street or on line photo shops do plates ornaments. After some searching, I came across Xarim.com on the internet. I had never heard about this online shop or seen their products so I was a bit apprehensive but with no alternative, I decided to give them a try. ~Who Are Xarim~ Xarim is a British business Established in 1993 and is located in, Ffordd Derwen, RHYL, Denbighshire in Wales. It specialises in creating a range of unique clocks, personalised clocks at very competitive prices. The company also specialises in another aspect of business, the Photos 2 Gifts which includes personalising a wide selection of gifts which can be created from customer's photographs or general pictures. It is well known for creating unique designs and for souvenir Fridge Magnets, Key rings, Badges and Clocks. The company supplies wholesale and retail in addition to internet sales to customers like me. http://www.xarim.com **My review is based my experience using the on-line store. ~Layout & Design~ The front page of the website is well presented, with the logo and name of the company clearly visible on the top panel. The main headings are located on the top tool bar below the logo but they are rather small and in plain black font. Each main heading is hyperlinked so will lead you to another page with the relevant information. The search tool is also clearly visible to the right and located along the same tool bar level as the main headings. You can search by a few key words in the product name and the search tool works well and is rather fast and specific rather than being asked to refine your search endlessly until you luckily get to the required product. Typing in "photo on plate" in the search tool box brought up two products, both photo plates but different sizes; 8" (200mm) and 10" (250 mm) showing the possible designs. Again this is always safe as products may have different names depending on the manufacturer. In this case it was exactly the products I wanted and this made my life a bit easy. On the left hand side of the front page you find other headings which are also hyperlinked. The most important to me was the product link, which lists all the product by categories. Below that you find important customer information about the on-line store including, how to order, the terms and conditions and the other information about cookies, whatever they are? At the very bottom of the front page are the company's contact details: address and telephone number and at the very top right hand corner is the log in and contact us links. The rest of the page contains colourful product pictures, price and relevant information about the product. This information given also compares the price with other on-line stores such as Amazon. ~Navigation & Content Update~ It is fairly easy to navigate and find your way on the website. The product page is fairly up to date which is encouraging for me as it gives me the confidence that I am not dealing with obsolete information. The English language used is good and clear. The website is relatively fast, and ok to navigate without losing your patience. ~Site content and Information~ The website is well populated with products which can be found using the category link or the search tool box. Details have already been covered above under Layout and Design. I usually prefer to search using the search tool bar as I can never be sure in which category to find the products. As soon as I found the product, I was informed of the following: * The brief description and preview of the product and the various sizes available ==>important to assure me I was looking at the right product I really wanted. * The stock availability ==> this determined whether I was going to proceed or not and luckily the product was in stock and actually indicated how many were still available. * An option to add a personalised message in your chosen font and colour and the message will be printed on the plate together with the image * Choice of how many items you want to buy * Then once satisfied, you then precede to purchase by pressing the Buy Now button which is clearly visible on the right bottom corner. This takes you to the price information. . ~Price~ I chose two 8" photo plates at £22.95 each and 2 presentation plate boxes at £7.50. The total cost was £60.90. The delivery is however not free even for an order this big financially, I had to pay £11.50 shipping charges (recorded delivery) bringing the total to £72.40. The price quoted already includes VAT. ~Purchasing~ Once I had identified the product I wanted, buying was easy, clicking the Buy Now button took me to another window which confirmed the product and quantity in my basket. You can add or subtract on quantity. You can continue shopping and this takes you to the first page to find another product and meanwhile what you have chosen is safely kept in the in your shopping basket for you. Once satisfied you can then choose the delivery option and where you want the delivery to be sent. After this you then proceed to Checkout to pay by credit or debit card or through PayPal facility. You can also pay by Cheque or Postal Order Payments to made payable to Xarim Photos 2 Gifts. I automatically chose checkout for credit or debit card payment. After completing the purchase, I received an automatic email with my Unique Order Number and request to submit the picture to be printed onto the plates. Unfortunately you cannot send pictures before, or during a purchase. Apparently this is to ensure your image is linked to the correct order. If for some reason you cannot send pictures by attachment, they also accept prints, negatives, slides, or drawings and these have to be send by post with a printed copy of your order. . The prints are then returned together with your order. The e-mail also contained confirmation of my order, and all the other stuff I needed to know about my order. ~Customer Service after purchase~ The customer support was excellent. I was guided through the requirements for the picture to be imprinted onto the plate. They helped me make the necessary changes to the picture in terms of picture format, size, colour contrast etc to make sure that the final product would be what I really wanted. All the communication after I had placed the order was done via e-mail and their response was prompt within 24 hours. I felt they really wanted me to get the best out of the service they offered. ~Delivery Information for mainland UK~ Most standard completed orders are shipped within 2 working days of finalising the order. Orders are shipped by recorded delivery and there is a charge for the shipping. My order arrived on the day I was expecting it. It was nicely packed to avoid breakage. Order number: NM37HW10003063 ~Conclusion~ This was really a pleasant shopping experience, no hassles, no surprise hidden charges, a smooth process indeed and a very satisfied customer ==> me. Now that I have some experience dealing with this company, I will certainly buy from them again. If you are looking for unique gifts, try them. Yes I would recommend friends and family. My rating 5/5 stars. Thank you for reading and rating ©hildah11 Feb 2013

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                        08.12.2012 22:42
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                        Mild but good hand cream

                        ~LA MAISON DE SENTEURS HAND CREAM~ It was my birthday a few weeks ago and as usual, I get various gifts from friends and family including some lovely hand creams. My colleagues know that I am a regular user of hand moisturising products as I can't stand dry rough hands. I have in the past used a variety of hand moisturising products; I have liked some and disliked others. I got this hand moisturising cream recently as a gift on my birthday. ~~Availability and Price~~ The cream is manufactured by Marks and Spencer, a UK based company. The cream is just one of the toiletry product ranges they manufacture. In the UK, it seems to be available from Marks and Spencer as I have not seen it in most high street supermarkets and pharmacies which sell toiletry. It is available as a single product, 75 ml for £3.50 and currently only comes in this size. ~~Packaging and Visibility~~ The cream comes in a tube wrapped with a light green/blue label paper. The label print is clearly visible in front and the ingredients and other information are listed at the back. In my view the product packaging is not that eye catching and put amongst other hand creams, I do not think it would be clearly outstanding and visible. Fortunately as it seems to be available mainly in Marks and Spenser who are also the manufacturer, I am sure they would put it strategically so that it can't be missed. The tube is made of thin silver squeezable plastic and has a white plastic screw on lid. The plastic is crack free, soft to press and allows easy squeezing to release the cream. The cream pours out well from the bottle but careful if you squeeze too hard, too much of the cream will ooze out resulting in wastage. Environment wise, the manufacturer says the tube is currently not recyclable, I am not sure why in this day and age. It doesn't look any different to any other plastic I know, so I will recycle it anyway together with my other stuff. ~~Composition and Application~~ The cream is white in colour, has a smooth non runny consistence and is also non greasy. The ingredients in the cream seem well balanced. It is fairly easy to apply but a bit of massaging into the skin and along the nails always gives best results. It is easily absorbed into the skin and leaves the skin with a soft and refreshing feeling. The cream keeps the skin fairly moisturised without the greasiness associated with other creams. According to the manufacturer, the cream moisturises and protects your hands and contains ingredients which also help strengthen your nails. ~~Scent~~ The cream contains rich shea butter and is also supposed to be gently fragranced with lemon and floral fragrances. In my view the fragrance is not obvious at all and for me, I would call this a very mild fragranced hand cream as I can't smell any of the fragrances. ~~Use & Benefits~~ The cream is not recommended for facial use and this is clearly stated on the label. As there is no other adverse information, I would say the cream is meant to be suitable for all skin types but like everything associated with people, the cream may not be suitable for everyone. It comes in an ideal; size for the handbag too. According to the manufacturer, the cream is a nourishing hand cream which is supposed to help moisturise and soothe the hands and also uplift and rejuvenate the skin. It is supposed to be enjoyed, shared and never forgotten. It is inspired by the traditional styles of Southern France. I would say this cream is ideal for women but some men may also like it. ~~Summary~~ I have been using this cream for a while now and although my hands feel great after applying the hand cream, it doesn't seem to last like the other hand creams I have used before. The smell is rather mild for me but should say it might be perfectly ok for those who do not love strong scents. In my view it is affordable as it is average priced, neither cheap nor very expensive. For more information please visit: http://www.marksandspencer.com/La-Maison-Senteurs-Hand-Cream/dp/B00405WN3I ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Thank you for reading and rating. ©hildah11, Dec 2012

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                        27.11.2012 19:40
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                        Invaluable storage bags for any family and really bringing convenience home as the manufacturer says

                        ~SMARTT WIRE TIE MEDIUM FOOD & FREEZER BAGS~ I usually cook and bake a lot during the weekend when I am home and freeze some of the food for later use during the week when everyone gets really busy. I also buy vegetable, fruits and meat on offer and apportion it into handy portions for freezing. I just find freezing very handy and cost effective as well so I am always on the lookout for good quality and affordable freezer bags. I used various types mainly from Tesco but occasionally from other shops as well. Some have been good and some disappointing but so far these have been good. ~Availability & Price~ The freezer bags are manufactured by Smartt Products company (www.smarttproducts.com). The company manufactures a variety of plastic kitchen accessories including storage bags. I normally buy these freezer bags from Tesco, £0.99 for a pack of 45 medium size bags on a roll. The bags are 23 x 35 cm and come with wire ties, pieces of soft wire coated in white plastic for tying the bags after loading with food. The bags are transparent and come rolled up in a white translucent plastic bag. ~Uses~ The bags are fairly thick and strong and can withstand some weight after loading with food stuff. The bags can be used for general storage in the food cupboard for dry foods, in the fridge and for freezing stuff. They can be used for virtually anything as long as no sharp edges which will tear the bag. They can also be used as sandwich bags as long as the tie wires are used securely to exclude lots of air. I also use mine to carry my fruits to work. Freezer wise, they are just the right size for freezing food portions for my family. One meal portion per bag, so easy to use when required hence avoiding wastage and food spoilage due to repeated freezing and thawing. It is handy to know what is actually in the bag and when the food was actually stored/frozen. This is possible with these bags because they specific portions for labelling with the contents in the bag and also including the date when the food was frozen. An ordinary pen can be used for labelling but I prefer to use a permanent marker. The food contents and date of freezing/storage can therefore be clearly seen I find this really handy as at times it's difficult to tell apart the food especially meat when frozen. The date ensures that earlier frozen food can be used first. The bags are fairly easy to use, because the plastic is fairly thick, they are easy to open and not as slippery and stuck together as other plastic bags I have used before. They are also easy to tie with the wire as long as they are not overfilled. Bear in mind that food or things expand a bit in volume when they freeze so leave a bit of space, do not overfill the bags. It is recommended that you expel as much air as possible from the bags before tying and freezing. It is recommended to allow food to cool first before putting in the bags and also before freezing. The bags can be used in microwaves during thawing/defrosting and do not tear during thawing, but should not be used for cooking in conventional or combination ovens as the bags will obviously melt. ~~Advantages~~ o Easy to use and convenient way of freezing and storing food o Fairly thick and strong for the purpose o Easy to hold even when loaded with the food o Wire for tying soft and easy to tie ~~Disadvantages~~ o None really, just wish they were resealable ~Safety~ Like any other plastic bags and to avoid accidental suffocation, please keep away from babies, young children and pets. ~Summary~ Invaluable storage bags for any family and really bringing convenience home as the manufacturer says. For more information visit: www.smarttproducts.com ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Thank you for reading and rating hildah11: Nov 2012

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