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Hi, I'm Alison. I also write on Dooyoo under the same name but under the picture of my dog Oscar!

Reviews written

since 27/07/2003


Aussie Smooth Mate Static Shampoo 12/06/2010

Good but not great Aussie Smooth Mate

Aussie Smooth Mate Static Shampoo I recently discovered Aussie Shampoos and Conditioners and was very pleased with the quality of them that I stocked up when I saw them on special offer. My favourite so far is the Miracle Moist shampoo but I thought I would try some others in the range and so my next purchsase was the "Smooth Mate Shampoo" which is designed for flyaway static hair. The shampoo comes in a 300ml bottle in Aussies trademark colours of cream and purple. It has a flip top cap which manages to stay pretty clean after frequent use which I like. The shampoo costs around £3.99 a bottle but you can often find it on special offer. The special ingredient used in the shampoo is extract of Australian Blue Gum leaves which Aussie claims helps to control static and smoothes flyaways. The shampoo itself is a very light blue colour, its almost white with just a hint of blue, I am a bit sceptical as to whether there really is enough blue gum leaves to change the colour or whether (most likely) they dye the shampoo blue to make it look nice. Either way I am happy to report it doesn't give your hair a blue rinse! Directions are no different from any other shampoo. The shampoo is quite thick and it foams up to a good lather quickly without needing to use much. It rinses out fairly easily too. The smell is nice, not as strong as my other Miracle Moist shampoo but a nice fruity sweet fragrance which isn't too overpowering. All sounds good but does it do anything more than any other shampoo, I ...

Angels And Demons (DVD) 31/10/2009

Not quite a demon of a film, but not bad.

Angels And Demons (DVD) Angels and Demons is another film based on the best selling books written by Dan Brown. I have to confess that I am one of the few people who never read The Da Vinci Code although I did watch the film. I therefore sat down to watch Angels and Demons not knowing what the storyline was about. The film begins with the death of the Pope and as the Vatican get ready to elect a new pope four of the most likely successors are kidnapped. They are believed to be kidnapped by someone working for the Illuminati an old religious group and are threatening to murder them one by one. Robert Langdon (played by Tom Hanks) is sent for because of his successful detective work in the Da Vinci code and works alongside Vittoria Vettra who is a scientist who has created an explosive antimatter which has been stolen by the Illuminati and will be used as a bomb with devastating consequences. Together Langdon and Vettra chase around Rome trying to solve the clues and uncover the mysteries of the Vatican to try to save the cardinals. Can they make it in time or will the Vatican be destroyed? I enjoyed the film, Tom Hanks is great as Langdon and makes the character quite believable. His character outshines his partner Vettra, I don't know if this is just in the film or whether it is in the book too but her role is much smaller and quite insignificant. I think I possibly enjoyed the film more because I hadn't read the book so you don't know what is coming next and there are plenty of ...

Clarins Water Comfort One Step Cleanser 25/10/2009

It's Peachy!

Clarins Water Comfort One Step Cleanser As many of you know I am a big fan of Clarins products and always keen to try out new products so the latest to be put on my skin was the Clarins Water Comfort One Step Cleaner. I had been lucky enough to get a discovery size free recently so have been using it for a few weeks. The cleanser is a water based cleanser made with peach essential water. Clarins explains that this ingredient is obtained through a process of steam distillation producing an ingredient which is full of the beneficial properties of peach. These properties include soothing, softening and conditioning properties. As with all Clarins products there are also lots of other plant extracts including some known names and other less well known plants. These include a coconut derivative to act as gentle non-foaming cleansing agent to dissolve surface grime and light make-up. Moringa Seed extract to neutralise harmful pollution. Isphagul and Provitamin B5 to soften and hydrate the skin and Honey and Glycerine to regulate and maintain the skins moisture level. The cleanser is designed for dry or normal skin. Instructions are simply to soak a cotton wool pad with the cleanser and gently sweep over the face. It can be used both morning and evening. The major downside to the product is the cost which is £16.50 for a 200ml bottle. The cleanser is a clear liquid slightly pink tinted water. It has a lovely fresh peachy smell. Applying it to cotton wool and sweeping it over my face it does leave it ...

Clarins Eau Ressourcante Moisturizing Body Lotion 14/10/2009

A Whiff of Clarins!

Clarins Eau Ressourcante Moisturizing Body Lotion I love Clarins products and have finally started to get round to reviewing some of the many products in their range that I have used. The first is the Clarins Eau Ressourcante Moisturising Body Lotion. The lotion comes from their “blue” fragrance range which is Eau Ressourcante. The lotion is designed to hydrate, refresh and soften skin. It contains essential oils and also plant extracts including Sarsaparilla and Hibiscus which relax and moisturise, Robinia which soothes and softens and Longan which stimulates. It comes in a semi-opaque white plastic bottle with turquoise writing on the bottle. It has a screw top cap with a covered top which has a small opening. The small opening is good as you can just squeeze a small amount of the lotion out rather than pour too much out at one time. The bottle holds 250ml and costs £24. Instructions are simply to apply using light sweeping movements. The product is definitely a lotion and not a cream being thinner than a cream but not too runny. It absorbs quickly into your skin and is not greasy. It lightly moisturises your skin and leaves it feeling soft. I don’t think if your skin was really dry this would be a great product, I think for really dry skin you would want something creamier. The lotion has a really strong smell in fact although at first I found it nice after using the product for a bit it is really quite overpowering. I work as a physiotherapist and some of our patients have problems with their hands and I ...

Fool's Gold (DVD) 12/10/2009

It might not be pure gold but it is still ok!

Fool's Gold (DVD) I was browsing through Lovefilm looking for some films to add to my rental list when I came across Fool’s Gold. It’s a film starring Kate Hudson and Matthew McConaughey so I thought it might be quite good, the only thing that worried me was that I don’t remember it coming out at the cinema. However I decided I would give it a go. The film tells the story of Ben (called Finn) and Tess Finnegan a married couple about to divorces in Cuba. They have a bit of a love hate relationship as although Tess loves Finn he is not very dependable. They both have a desire to find the Queens Dowry treasure which was lost when a Spanish ship sunk in the 1700’s. Finn discovers something which he thinks will lead him to the find but in the process manages to spectacularly blow up then sink his boat. Meanwhile Tess is working as a steward on billionaire Nigel Honeycutt’s yacht but not really happy. Finn hatches a plan to try to get both Tess and Nigel on his side and roped into treasure hunting. However they aren’t the only ones looking for the treasure and they have to contend with Bigg Bunny, the gangster rapper who owns the nearby island and to whom Finn owes money. Suddenly it’s not just the treasure at stake but also their lives. I have to say that I quite enjoyed this film. It is by no means the best example of a romantic comedy but its fun, enjoyable, has good characters and good to watch. It’s a film that doesn’t take itself too seriously and I think you have to watch it with that ...

Clarins Blemish Control 2 10/10/2009

Spot the Spot

Clarins Blemish Control 2 I often treat myself to a Clarins facial or massage and after the treatment they always ask if they can help you with any skin concerns you might have or recommend some products which might help your skin. At the last treatment I had I told the therapist I was concerned about the spots I keep getting on my chin and wondered if there was anything they recommended. Surprise surprise there was a Clarins product that would help me and it was called Stop Imperfections Locales or Blemish Control. The product comes in a box and contains two 5ml glass tubes. They have a white plastic screw top cap which removes to reveal a metal ball at the top. When you roll this over the spot area it releases a small amount of the product right on the area where it is needed. The product is a clear liquid and drys into the skin quite quickly and does not leave any marking on your skin. There is only a very faint smell and a nice change to the very chemical smelling spot treatments. The product is kind to your skin as it contains natural ingredients rather than harsh chemicals like many spot treatments. There are lots of natural active ingredients which work in several ways to help your skin these include White Nettle, Zinc, Witch Hazel, Allantonin and Vitamin B6 these work to calm imperfections in the skin, decrease the redness in the area and soothe and soften the skin. The main downside to this product is that like all Clarins products it is not cheap. It costs around £15 and for that ...

Hot Fuzz (DVD) 04/10/2009

The British "Bad Boys"

Hot Fuzz (DVD) The most recent film to make it the top of my rental list on Lovefilm was Hot Fuzz. This was one of my husband's choices so I sat down not knowing what to expect at all. I thought by the name it was some American action film however I was surprised to find that it was in fact a British comedy. It is made by the same people who made "Shaun of the Dead" although I can't really compare the two as I haven't seen that film. The main character in the film is Simon Pegg who plays Nicholas Angel a successful police officer working in London. However his successes in his work start to make the rest of the police force look bad so they transfer him up to the sleepy village of Sandford. Angel immediately gets the villagers backs up by emptying the pub of all the underage drinkers (and so losing the pub owner a lot of custom) and then ends up arresting a fellow police officer for drunk driving! As Angel begins work in the village he discovers that there are quite a lot of mysterious goings on and a bit too many so called "accidents" which seem to result in a high death rate. Angel decides to investigate further along with his work partner Danny Butterman played by Nick Frost. This film is really not what I was expecting. It has a good although completely unbelievable plot line which just adds to the humour of the film. It really is a film that doesn't take itself too seriously. There is a good cast including Jim Broadbent and Timothy Dalton. The casting of Pegg and Frost ...

Clairol Clariol Herbal Essences Seductively Straight Shampoo 27/07/2009

Straight and to the point - its good!

Clairol Clariol Herbal Essences Seductively Straight Shampoo The latest product to make its way into my bathroom to be tested is the Herbal Essences Seductively Straight Silk N'Shine Shampoo. It's from the new range of Herbal Essences Shampoos which have been redesigned, rebranded and repackaged and I have to say I am very pleased with them so far. The shampoo is designed for dry and damaged hair and contains silk and pear extracts designed to give you seductively straight hair. The shampoo comes in a rather funky looking cerise pink plastic bottle with a bright green flip top cap. The bottle has a nice curvy shape and my bottle holds 400ml but you can get smaller 250ml bottles too. My bottle cost £3.26 from Tesco but it was on a buy one get one free offer and you could mix and match between conditioners and shampoos. On the back of the bottle is some advice from the Herbal School of Seduction! Lesson 1 is that this shampoo with its silk and pear extracts will tame your hair into a sleek line of shine. Lesson 2 is that the captivating conditioner gets full marks for silk touch and gloss. I guess I am only going to learn lesson 1 as I haven't bought the conditioner! The back of the bottle also has "Herbalhead games" which seems to be questions and answers which you need to have both the shampoo and conditioner to work it out. They really are pushing you to buy both products! The question on my bottle is "What is rated as the best unconscious way to attract the opposite sex?" To find the answer you need to buy the ...

Boots No.7 Beautifully Balanced Purifying Cleanser 12/07/2009

Clean and Soft Skin

Boots No.7 Beautifully Balanced Purifying Cleanser I recently had a £5 voucher redeemable on Boots No. 7 products which Boots were giving away when you spent money in store. Having never really bought much from the Boots No.7 range I wasn’t sure what to spend it on but I needed some new cleanser so I thought I would give this product a try. It is called Beautifully Balanced Purifying Cleanser and it is for oily and combination skin. Boots claim that it “sweeps away excess oil, purifies pores and softens your skin to leave it feeling clean and matte.” It comes in a 200ml bottle with a lift off cap and a pump dispenser. It is quite a simple but classy bottle with no pictures just some writing. The bottle has a pale green shimmery colour to it. I like the pump dispenser it allows you to dispense exactly the right amount of cleanser you want not like some which pour out too much at a time. The only thing I don’t like about the bottle is that it is too tall to fit in my bathroom cabinet so I have to keep it in my cabinet under the sink. The cleanser itself is a pale green colour and is a gel consistency. It is fragrance free, pH balanced and hypo-allergenic. Directions for use – You can use cotton wool to “sweep” the cleanser over your face and neck and then simply wipe off or you can wash it off with some warm water. Instead of cotton wool you can use your fingers and then wash off with water. My preferred method is to use cotton wool, wipe it over my face and then use the reverse side of the cotton wool to remove any ...

Madagascar - Escape 2 Africa (DVD) 06/07/2009

Who said penguins can't fly!

Madagascar - Escape 2 Africa (DVD) Madagascar, Escape 2 Africa is the sequel to the hugely popular Madagascar. Here we catch up with our favourite characters Alex the lion, Marty the zebra, Melman the giraffe and Gloria the hippo still in Madagascar but about to attempt to fly back to New York. The plane has been put together and flown by the penguins who had some very comic moments in the first film. However things don't exactly go to plan and the plane crashes down into a nature reserve in Africa. Here Alex meets some faces from the past and has some hard lessons to learn along with the other characters. Will they survive in the wild, will they be shot by hunters and will they ever make it back home? You'll need to watch to find out. I really enjoyed this film probably almost as much as the first. It's great to see all the characters back again reunited for this film but also joined with a few new ones too. Ben Stiller as Alex in the lead role plays his character perfectly with just the right amount of showing off. Chris Rock as Marty brings a lot of humour to the show. Melman played by David Schwimmer gets a slightly bigger role in this film where he steps up to the mark and helps other animals who are ill and also makes a decision about love. The main comedy though for me comes from the amazing and entertaining penguins who I am glad to say make more appearances in this film that in the previous. Watch out for them before the film has even started when the Dreamwork logo comes on! They are just ...

Frost/Nixon (DVD) 29/06/2009

Frost versus Nixon

Frost/Nixon (DVD) Frost/Nixon is a film about the television interviews that David Frost carried out with the former American President Richard Nixon and centred around the Watergate scandal. They happened in 1977 when I was just a baby so although I had heard about Watergate I couldn't really have told you anything about it and I certainly didn't know that David Frost had interviewed Nixon about it. My husband however had heard about the film and was keen to watch it so I sat down not sure what to expect. Michael Sheen plays David Frost a successful talk show host who sees his chance to make it big in America by getting the biggest scoop and interviewing Nixon. Nixon agrees to the interview providing Frost can come up with the large fee. Frost has to try to convince the TV networks to pay for the interviews or he will have to find the money elsewhere. This then all leads up to the series of interviews carried out. This for me was the best part of the film because it becomes a real psychological battle between the two, a battle of wits and wills. Frank Langella who plays Nixon is amazing in his role and really demonstrates Nixons ability to play Frost and use the conversation and the interviews to his best advantage. You can just see Frost thinking what can I do as Nixon controls and takes over the interview. However as the film and the interviews progress the change in the two is amazing to watch. Will Nixon get a chance to explain his actions? Will he apologise? Will this ...

Yes Man (DVD) 25/06/2009

Just Say "YES!!!!"

Yes Man (DVD) Yes Man is a comedy starring Jim Carrey. The film is based on a book by Danny Wallace and basically tells the story of a man who starts to say “Yes” to every opportunity that comes his way regardless of what it is. Interestingly enough Danny Wallace makes a little appearance sitting at the bar, I knew it was him as I had seen him on Richard and Judy some time ago talking about his book and his experiences of deciding to say yes to every opportunity. The main character in the film is Carl Allen who is played by Jim Carrey. Carl is a bit of a miserable man, he says no to everything at work and in his personal life. His friends are starting to give up on him because he wont go out with them and makes up lame excuses about why he cant meet them. Then Carl meets an old friend who persuades him to come along to a meeting. Here at this meeting he is challenged to say “Yes” to everything that is offered to him no matter what and so begins the start of a life changing experience for Carl. Jim Carrey really brings the character Carl alive with his trademark humour and face pulling! After agreeing to say “Yes” to everything Carl becomes more exciting and fun and its only a matter of time before he meets a new woman, the first since splitting up from his wife. Allison the new woman Carl meets is played by Zooey Deschanel and is a great fun character, slightly kooky, she takes groups who take photographs whilst jogging! Things start to look up when the two of them go out but what ...

Imperial Leather Wake Up Shower Gel 16/06/2009

A Lemon Wake Up Call

Imperial Leather Wake Up Shower Gel Recently when shopping for shower gels I saw that Tesco was doing an offer on Imperial Leather shower gels where you could get 4 for £3, they normally sell at £1 each so it’s a good offer. Never one to resist a bargain I choose four different varieties and have been slowly working my way through them. The current one in my bathroom is the Imperial Leather Wake Up Shower Gel. This is meant to be an invigorating scent to get you going in the morning and is Bitter Lemon and Ginger. The shower gel comes in a wavy clear bottle which allows you to see the lovely yellow shower gel and see when it is getting low. The bottle has a yellow flip open lid to easily dispense the shower gel and it holds 250ml. The gel has bitter lemon which they say is a fresh and zingy detoxifier enriched with Vitamin C. Not sure that any of that vitamin C would make it from the small amount in the shower gel into your skin! It also has Ginger which they say is warming, fragrant and vigorous! The gel is 100% soap free and has a skin friendly pH. Opening up the bottle you can smell the lemon scent although I found it hard to detect the ginger smell. It’s a nice smell but not as nice as Original Source Lemon shower gels which smell just like lemon curd. Perhaps because this is bitter lemon it doesn’t smell quite as nice. The gel is a yellow colour and is fairly thin but not so much that it runs right off your hands. The shower gel foams up well so you only need a little to wash with and it gives ...

Tesco Shower Gel Sea Minerals 14/06/2009

I do like to be beside the seaside.......... but not smell of it!

Tesco Shower Gel Sea Minerals I always enjoy trying out new toiletries and am always tempted by a bargain and so the Tesco Sea Minerals Shower Gel made its way into my shopping trolley recently. The shower gel is available only in Tesco stores and retails for 47p so its quite cheap. What I wanted to know was whether it was cheap and cheerful or cheap and nasty! The shower gel comes from a range and there is a sea minerals bath foam also available. The shower gel comes in a clear plastic bottle with a blue flip top lid. The bottle holds 300ml. The gel is a lovely bright blue colour and you can see this through the bottle. There isn’t any hanger on the bottle so you have to sit it on a shelf or on the side of your bath but this didn’t bother me too much. The shower gel is designed to cleanse and hydrate your skin so lets see whether it did that or not. Opening the bottle up you can smell a fresh smell I wouldn’t say that it is particularly sea-like. Then again I wouldn’t really want to smell of the sea after washing! To me it smells more of a masculine smell than a feminine smell. There is nothing distinctive about it and smells much like many mens deodorants. It is pleasant enough but nothing exciting. The shower gel comes easily out of the bottle and is of moderate consistency. It lathers up easily and gives a good foam. Tesco says that it cleanses and hydrates your skin, well yes I did feel after using it that my skin was cleansed but I didn’t fel that it was hydrated. My skin ...

A place Called Here - Cecelia Ahern 12/06/2009

Where do things go when they get lost?

A place Called Here - Cecelia Ahern Cecelia Ahern is a best-selling Irish novelist and author of many novels including PS I Love You which was recently made into a film. A Place Called Here is her fourth novel. It tells the story of Sandy Shortt, who at 6ft 1 is anything but short. Sandy is obsessed by finding things that are lost whether it be socks or people. This obsession has stemmed from childhood when a girl in her class Jenny-May Butler disappeared and Sandy was left wondering where do things and people go when they get lost. As Sandy grew up this never left her and she devoted her life to looking for missing people. However whilst working on a case to look for a missing man Sandy goes missing herself and finds herself in a strange place and struggles to find her own way home. I really don't want to say anything more about the story or what happens to Sandy as it will spoil the story if you want to read it. However I can say that there are lots of surprises and a few twists and turns to keep you wondering what will happen and how it will all end. This is a very strange but intriguing novel. You really have to be prepared to use your imagination to enjoy this novel to its best. Aherns first two novels were love stories but this is very much like her third novel "If you could see me now" there is a fairytale feel to the story. She has really used her imagination to think about where lost things end up. It really wasn't quite what I expected but I really enjoyed it. I have read all of ...
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