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Almost 3 years without writing a review. Roll on 2013 for the next attempt.

Reviews written

since 22/04/2002


VAX Mach 5 Pet U90-M5 29/01/2010

Vax-ing Lyrical

VAX Mach 5 Pet U90-M5 Watching the delivery man carrying the parcel containing this Vax machine down my drive and seeing his knees buckle, I was pre-warned that this wasn’t going to be any lightweight and I wasn’t wrong. Assembly didn’t present any major problems, despite the fact that I like to read the instructions and my husband, who was in charge, does the man thing and totally ignores them, which necessitated me pointing out the error of his ways once or twice . Once out of the box the machine comes in three main components, base, dust collection housing and handle. A few twirls with the screwdriver and everything was up and running. All the tools slot neatly into the unit so that they are always to hand and these comprise: two extension tubes to give extra hose length, a 2 in 1 tool which is a dusting brush for delicate surfaces and an upholstery tool for carpets etc, a turbo tool which is designed to tackle pet hair and can be used on upholstered furniture, mattresses, clothing, car interiors and carpeted stairs. a crevice tool for getting into tight spaces All eventualities covered there I think and a tool for every occasion, all easily within reach and unlike some other brands where the handle is incorporated into attaching tools, with the Vax the handle stays where it belongs and the tube hose slots into its own housing. A handle on the end of the hose makes it easy to remove for immediate use. The handle for the main unit is adjustable so will suit everyone and a press of a ... 25/05/2007

Don't Call the AA With the contract on my mobile phone coming to an end I thought I would make some enquiries to find myself a replacement contract at a good price. I decided on a Nokia phone as I find that they’re about the only ones I don’t struggle to conquer working out how to use. I’d read a review about the latest Nokia N73 which has a 3 mega pixel camera and a Carl Zeiss lens and after a lot of searching I found myself what I thought was a really good deal. The phone was for free and the contract would be for 12 months which I prefer to the 18 month ones as I’ve usually got fed up with the current phone after about a year. I would still be with O2 as I have been for the past few years but the AA could come up with a much better offer than dealing directly with O2 as when I spoke to them they admitted they couldn’t match the offer I’d found on the AA website. The contract would give me 100 cross network minutes and 100 texts per month for £20 per month which I could cancel after 12 months. The supplier I chose was AA Mobile. AA being a part of the Automobile Association group and nothing at all to do with alcoholics anonymous. Though after trying to deal with these people there’s a strong possibility that you could end up turning to drink. As soon as I saw the AA logo I was confident that I was dealing with a big and reliable company and ordered my phone online. The website was very easy to use. On the homepage is the reassuring AA logo and in the top corner of the page it ...

Gaggia Selector Deluxe 30/10/2006

Gaggia-ing for a Drink

Gaggia Selector Deluxe After a long day's shopping in Nottingham recently our final port of call was House of Fraser and the wonderful smell of coffee wafting around the shop floor led us to the Gaggia display counter. The barista immediately asked us if we would like a drink and it seemed a shame not to, so black coffees were produced for hubby and myself and a hot chocolate for the grandson. The salesman/barista was passionate about his products and told us all about them at length and our eye was caught by one particular model, the Selecta, which was on promotion at half price. For a limited period this machine was on sale for £134.99 instead of the usual, double priced amount. The beauty of this machine is that as well as being able to take the pods which we still had left from another machine, it also makes tea from bags or loose leaf tea, ground coffee, froths milk for chocolate drinks, as well as many different varieties of teas and coffees which can be purchased directly from the Gaggia website,, if you don't happen to have a department store available where you live from which to buy them. You can also register your product online for the 24 month standard guarantee. This will also enable you to get discounts for their coffees and accessories and once you've spent £50 they will extend your guarantee to 36 months, so they must be fairly confident that we will be getting a product which will stand the test of time and last well. My husband is a salesman's dream ...

Lush Each Peach And Twos A Pear 06/06/2006

Not at all luscious

Lush Each Peach And Twos A Pear I've bought quite a few things from the Lush counter in my time but had never ventured to buy a massage bar until the last time I was in one of their stores. Picking one of the bars up and inhaling deeply, I was met with the most wonderful smell and quickly decided this was my latest "must have" purchase. I've read the previous review of this product and I wonder if we have actually used the same thing as my opinion is in total opposition. Before I go into what I thought of it, a little about the bar for those who have yet to come across a Lush store, though they must be few and far between these days. It's an oval, palm sized bar, looking very like soap to the uninitiated and is creamy yellowy in colour with a picture of flowers stamped on the top. It will set you back £3.50 for a 65g bar which will come wrapped in the usual Lush greaseproof papery type wrapping with a little sticker telling you what is inside and a brief note telling you when used, the massage bar will make you skin softer and your mood brighter. I did try to get on to the Lush website to glean a bit more information about their massage bars but it pointedly refuses to allow me access, so not much wiser there then. Plan B then came into force, to dig out an old copy of the Lush Times - an illustrated newspaper type publication which is handed out with purchases at their stores, or if you are on the mailing list, will be sent to you periodically. The ingredients of the ...

L'Oreal Nutrisummer 22/05/2006


L'Oreal Nutrisummer It seems but a distant memory now but I'm sure there were a couple of warm days not too long ago which caused me to fly into a panic at the thoughts of exposing my milky white legs to the elements. I keep them closely under wraps for most of the year but I will, under duress, give them a bit of an airing on exceptionally warm days. Now I was in a bit of a dilemma as to what to slap on to give my legs a hint of a tint when I saw an article in one of the Sunday colour supplements where various types of body lotion, designed to give a gradual build up of colour, were put through their paces and given marks out of 10. I was quite pleased to see that the Johnsons Holiday Skin, which I failed miserably with last year, didn't score very highly at all. I had begun to think I was the only person in the world who failed to get satisfactory results from this after reading all the glowing reviews about the stuff. The one that came out tops with highest marks was a new lotion produced by L'Oreal and called Nutrisummer. It comes in two types, one for medium skin and one for fair and the recommended retail price is £6.99 for a 200 ml tube, although I picked mine up in Superdrug for less than this, but whether it is still on offer or not, I don't know. Having such a pathetically pale complexion, I opted for the fair variety. It works on the same principle as all the other body lotions whereby you apply it daily and it will gradually build up a tanned look over time ...

Hoover Vacuum Polisher 10/02/2006

For easy manoeuvring, why not try Hoovering

Hoover Vacuum Polisher As the carpets throughout my house are gradually being replaced by various hard flooring, including tiles, hardwood and laminate, I found that I was more and more going back to the dark ages and reverting to a sweeping brush and dustpan to remove the debris and then a mop and bucket to wash it afterwards. That was until some bright spark came up with the suggestion that I should get a floor buffer. Anything for an easier life sounds good to me and so I started searching for something suitable. I haven't even seen a floor buffer for years and that was going back in time to when I remembered seeing them being pushed along hospital corridors. So I didn't really know where to start looking, but as I get cash back for shopping from various sites, the first thing I did was to search Kelkoo who would find me all on offer and compare the prices as well. There weren't a great abundance of them to be had and reviews I found on some of them didn't sound too favourable and then I came across the Hoover vacuum polisher. Hoover being a well known brand, I felt pretty safe in giving one of their models a go and the best price I could find was at where it was on offer at £109.99. I had a few reservations about aforementioned barmey, not exactly something to inspire confidence, but as my husband agreed to purchase it for me, it would be his money in the balance if things went wrong and not mine. I ordered the machine on a Monday afternoon and elected to go for free ...

Catch Me When I Fall - Nicci French 28/12/2005

Don't Drop Me

Catch Me When I Fall - Nicci French Holly Krauss has everything going for her. A loving husband, a successful business which she co-owns with her best friend Meg and boundless energy to attack anything life throws at her. Admired by all and loved by many she has tremendous zest and works herself into the ground with no ill effects. She seems to thrive on a very little sleep, which would seriously harm a lesser mortal, until one night when it all comes unraveled. The book begins with her in a bar with Meg discussing work problems when she witnesses a man being exceptionally rude to the foreign barmaid who doesn't speak English very well and is very intimidated. The man is large and domineering and in a way that only Holly can, she feels she cannot tolerate the situation and has to do something about it. Afraid of nothing and no one she soon risks her own safety by challenging the man when none of the male customers will do so. The man is so surprised by her interference that he strikes up a conversation with her, secretly admiring her and admits he got what he deserved and shouldn't have spoken in the way he did, even if she was a lousy barmaid. From that confrontation the drinking escalates and she soon finds herself losing her colleagues and joining up with the bully and his friends. Gradually the night spirals out of control and from enjoying herself immensely, living dangerously, she finally finds herself in bed with a stranger with no recollection of who he is or why she came to be with ...

Morrisons The Best chicken & sicilian lemon oil mezzalune 21/12/2005

Pasta Joke - Not This One

Morrisons The Best chicken & sicilian lemon oil mezzalune First of all I would have liked to translate mezzalune into its English equivalent and here I met the first stumbling block. Visiting several free translation sites each time I typed in the word and asked for translation from Italian to English, I got exactly the same word back in both languages. Not much help there then. Then I thought I would try and fool the translation sites and break the word up into two so mezza came back with two versions from two different places. One said "half hour" and the other "average". Hmm, not very enlightening. I had better luck with the second half lune which I had a vague idea meant moon and sure enough that was what I got back. So I assume that the name refers to the shape of the pasta which is a circle folded over the filling to make a semi circle, or halfhour/average moon. If only my friend from Italy was here to help me out, but she hasn't arrived for her Christmas break here yet and I've had to struggle on without her assistance. Whenever I see a range entitled The Best I always think, well they must be good then and when Morrisons had an offer of two packs of their Best range pasta for £3, I was tempted to try some. The packs usually retail at £1.79 each so not a vast saving, but every little helps. As I'm a completely selfish shopper and always go for things that I might like best, I settled for the chicken and Sicilian lemon oil mezzalune, so can't advise as to what the other varieties in the Best pasta range ... 27/10/2005

Ciao's About That Then After reading a lot of negative things about Ciao I thought I would put my oar in and have a say for myself. For those new to Ciao who want to find out more about it, I'm no expert on the subject but I do know it's a site for consumers who wish to learn more about a product before they decide to buy it. This is where the members come in and we write reviews for the consumer to read to help make a purchasing decision. Our reviews can be read by all but only rated by other Ciao members which seems a bit silly to me, the people who really know how helpful the review may be are the would be consumers. I know I have often been tempted to buy things after reading reviews written by other members here but basically we are here to write reviews for everyone, not solely to please other Ciao members. Ciao has a very silly dot system and when you begin to write you will have an unfilled, white looking dot at the side of you name which at a quick glance looks the same as silver to me. Probably need to wear stronger glasses, but hey ho. I pay little attention to the colour of the dots anyway but to some this is extremely important and they will write a barrage of reviews about everything under the sun, purely to raise their community points to acquire the latest new look and a change of colour. I don't really give a toss what colour dot I am but to some it is extremely important and they are thrilled when they reach a new one. Fair play to them if they enjoy chasing dots ...

Birkenstock 31/07/2005

Walking back to Happiness

Birkenstock I struggle to find well fitting, comfortable shoes ever since my hubby stood on my little toe when I was wearing flip flops a couple of years ago. Now the said toe sits at a jaunty angle, quite at odds with the rest of my digits. Judging by the pain I felt at the time and for weeks afterwards I have concluded that he broke it and it's reset itself. He does swear it was an accident to this day but I have my doubts. Anyway, wearing summery sandals displays my tortured toe in all its glory and I've been struggling to find something that is both comfortable, summery and, most importantly keeps my odd digit in place. I've heard a lot about Birkenstock sandals but never really investigated further as I thought they were some sort of glorified Scholl sandal which I can remember from days of old. Great heavy lumps of wood which were supposed to exercise the feet while you were wearing them. However, when I actually got to look at a pair I found to my surprise that they were amazingly light, didn't look too hideous and I was assured by the salesgirl that they were extremely comfortable. I didn't need a great deal of persuasion to be talked into buying a pair of my very own. My ones are from the Papillio range and retail at £36 in the department store (House of Fraser) that I bought them from but there is a vast range of styles and prices starting at about the £29 mark. I've since found that there are several websites devoted to Birkenstock shoes, chief one being ...

Boots 3 in 1 Self Tan Peel off Face Mask 01/05/2005

Not Very A-peeling

Boots 3 in 1 Self Tan Peel off Face Mask Browsing round Boots the other day with my friend, she suddenly pounced upon a small brown box sitting on the edge of the suntan lotion aisle. "I've read good things about this" she proclaimed. Being easily influenced by "good things" and having plenty of Boots points going spare it was decided that I would be the guinea pig that got to try this stuff out first. The approximately 2" square box would have gone unnoticed by me, not being in the least eye catching, but having drawn my attention to it I read on the front of the box that as well as being a Boots Soltan product, it was also a 3 in 1 self tan peel off face mask in the shade light. Nothing ventured, nothing gained and I was soon minus the equivalent of £8 in Boots points and clutching the small box, containing 50 ml of magic potion. Reading the reverse of the box I learned that this wonder stuff had extra benefits of promoting a naturally tanned look at any time of the year or to prolong a natural tan. Being naturally deathly pale there would never be anything to prolong but I quite liked the thought of looking slightly more healthy and getting rid of my pallor. As well as transforming me into a more healthy looking being it would also exfoliate and moisturise my skin at the same time. Exfoliation being down to the anti oxident complex of apple, ginseng and mulberry which, the box assured me, would also build up skin defences against premature skin aging caused by the sun. I'm feeling healthier by the ...

Siemens TW91100 Kettles 24/03/2005

Hey Good Looking

Siemens TW91100 Kettles I've been so devoid of inspiration lately that marmilady left three words in my guestbook which she hoped would inspire me to write something and those were succulent, opulent and miserable, so as a thank you to her I shall try and include these in my review. I've been extremely "miserable" lately as I couldn't think of a single thing that I could write about and have drunk gallons of tea to console myself. Then suddenly it occurred to me that my nice shiny new kettle was nothing short of "opulent" and I really ought to do a review on its merits. The kettle in question is the Siemens Porsche TW91100 kettle. It can be classed opulent for the price - it weighs in at a hefty £69.99 at Amazon . You may think I am raving mad to spend that amount on a kettle but I had accumulated a fair number of Amazon vouchers for doing various surveys and things and I decided that I would spend them on some sort of luxury which I wouldn't normally consider instead of frittering it away on lots of books and dvds which is where the vouchers usually go. It took my fancy when I was trawling around Amazon trying to find something to spend my vouchers on, not only for its name but for its stylish good looks.The Porsche bit of its name comes from the designer F A Porsche, and he probably has nothing whatsoever to do with the car manufacturer but being easily pleased, it impressed me anyway. I'm never likely to own a car by that name, but a kettle would do nicely thank you very ...

Lakeland EasiYo Yogurt Maker 05/02/2005

Help Me Make it Through the Night

Lakeland EasiYo Yogurt Maker Although I've found the Easiyo yoghurt maker I wish to enthuse about under the heading Lakeland Easiyo etc. I must first point out, that much as I love Lakeland Limited this isn't exclusive to them and can be found the length and breadth of our green and pleasant land from a multitude of different sources. Originating from New Zealand where apparently half the homes in the entire country now have one of these babies, we are now lucky enough to be able to get our hands on it too and we owe our thanks to a gentleman called Len Light (just as well his first name wasn't Sun or Moon) who invented this and started production in the garage of his New Zealand home. I must admit to being quite keen on the odd yoghurt or three and since the New Year New You feeling that overcame me tempted me to buy more and more, I considered some sort of means of producing them at home. A few friends in years gone by have had yoghurt makers which seemed to take over the entire worktop space and produced thin and runny apology for yoghurt so I thought further investigation might lead me to something with more appetizing results. As luck would have it, one day I manage to have control of the tv remote and indulged in a spot of surfing and came across a demo for the Easiyo yoghurt maker and it looked so simple to make and the results so tempting that I made it my mission in life to become the proud owner of one myself. They also pointed out that the stuff that you buy on supermarket shelves ...

Acupuncture 24/01/2005

You might feel a bit of a prick

Acupuncture I’ve not had any experience of alternative medicine so when I manage to do something painful to my back whilst bending to pick litter up which the recent high winds had deposited all over my garden my first course of action was to swallow enough drugs to deaden the pain. On this occasion all the painkillers and sprays to hand did absolutely nothing to alleviate the excruciating pain. I didn’t want to see my GP. After all he’s been quite happy to not see me for years on end and provides repeat prescriptions without feeling the need to be in the same company as me, so why would I now want to grace him with my presence. I have lost all faith in doctors over the last few years and all anyone I know who does go to see him gets for their trouble is either “it’s a virus” or a benevolent smile and a recommendation to go home and take paracetemol. This is such a popular suggestion that I bet that if you were there with a severed arm you would still get this advice. Things reached crisis point the following morning when I couldn’t reach my feet. I gave myself a severe talking to and tried to convince myself it was mind over matter and I could get my socks on with a bit of perseverance. Unfortunately my talk fell on stony ground and the pain I felt was so severe I had to give up trying and grovel to my husband for assistance. Knowing my love of Doctors and not relishing the prospect of having to clothe my lower regions for the foreseeable future, my husband suggested a visit to ...

Incredibles, The (2004) 09/12/2004

These Muscles Aren't from Brussels

Incredibles, The (2004) First of all I would like to state that The Incredibles has never been at the top, or anywhere else, of my list of "must see" films but it rained all day on Sunday and small person was bored. We've already "done" Santa's Grotto so were struggling to think of something to entertain him when a trailer advertising The Incredibles popped on to the tv screen. Of course there was no quietening him now and he begged, pleaded and whined to be taken to see it. In desperation, my husband finally gave up all hopes of watching footie and agreed to take him, provided I came too. My cunning plan was to sneak in to a different showing when we got there, but I was foiled when husband bought the tickets, all for the film in question. We had an embarrassing few moments, when he stood there, looking gormless after being given his change from a £20 note and waiting for the rest, whilst the cashier gently told him that that was all he was getting and yes, it did cost almost £17 for two adults and one six year old to get into the cinema. Just shows how long it is since he's been to the "pictures". Probably cost one shilling and nine pence last time he went, for a back seat in the one and nines. How people with several children ever manage to afford to go to the cinema at current prices is a mystery to me. With a bag of popcorn at £3 and a large coke for the same amount, you would need a bank loan if you intended to go on a regular basis. Finally the magic moment arrived when we were all ...
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