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J. Dawson (Edinburgh, UK)
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Rexel JOY 75 mm A4 Lever Arch File - Perfect Purple
Rexel JOY 75 mm A4 Lever Arch File - Perfect Purple
Price: £8.35

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good quality, but pricey for a basic, 23 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is one of those products that is a bit difficult to review, because unless it is incredibly poor, then how surprising can it be? As files go, this is a nice one. It's an appealing shade of purple, the wipe clean "linen" finish is functional and attractive, it's capacious, and it has some nice details like the label pocket on the side, the thumb ring to assist in taking it off the shelf, and the metal-trimmed edges for added durability. But at the end of the day, it's still a file, and it costs more than double what the discount store equivalent would be. Granted, the latter may not have all the same little marks of quality mentioned above, but it is still going to hold your papers, and for less money. This is a good quality product for what it does, just not sure I need it to be quite this good in order to do the job!


Felix Mixed Selection in Jelly Wet Cat Food Pouch, 100 g (Pack of 96)
Felix Mixed Selection in Jelly Wet Cat Food Pouch, 100 g (Pack of 96)
Offered by BuyAllMeans
Price: £31.41

5.0 out of 5 stars Bargain bulk buy, 23 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I adopted my cat from a local shelter where Felix was their wet food of choice. And so far I have only found one other brand she will eat, but it is more expensive and made by a company I refuse to support. So we love Felix in our house, and I was thrilled to see it is now being sold in a larger pack. I hate lugging boxes home from the store so this pack is much more convenient and pretty good value, too. Only thing I'd like better is if the pouches were resealable, as we only use half at a time and kitty is fussy about freshness!


PetSafe FroliCat Flik Automatic Cat Teaser
PetSafe FroliCat Flik Automatic Cat Teaser
Price: £29.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating to my cat, a disappointment to me, 20 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have very mixed feelings about this cat toy. First off, at time of writing the cost is £29.99. I love my cat, but knowing how fickle felines can be about toys, there is no way I'd even consider spending this amount on a toy which she may or may not deign to interact with. On top of that, I also had to purchase 3 x AA batteries which were not included. Seems to me at that price they could have been! The insert mentions that it is designed to be a sleek and attractive toy that won't look out of place in your stylish home (I paraphrase). My home is covered in cat hair and scattered with jingley plastic balls and half-shorn fur mice, so the appearance of kitty's toys is really not top of my priority list. If you somehow manage to maintain both a happy, active cat AND a sleek design-led home, well then I guess this toy might excite you. It's basically a good-sized plastic disc, perhaps about 10in in diameter and a couple of inches high, glossy white and unadorned except for a small "Flik" logo on the top. Press the button on the side and a moor inside rotates intermittently, throwing out a short length of yellow cord, retracting it, and flicking it out again at intervals that are likely to seem unpredictable and enticing to a cat. That's it. It makes a noise, though only intermittently when the insides rotate with the cord, and it's not an intrusive noise in any case. It switches itself off after 15 minutes or so, which is handy as it means I can leave it on if I'm going out or whatever.

But what did the cat think? She's an extremely playful though somewhat skittish 2 year old and I was worried that she might be alarmed by this, but not so. Because the motor is quiet and the string flicks out at spaced intervals - much as if a human was dangling it - she was not at all frightened. But nor was she enthusiastic - I had it on for at least an hour and only saw her actually interact with it twice. So for any humans who might have wanted to be entertained, this fell a bit flat. That being said, the cat was absolutely fascinated by it. Although she didn't chase the string, she sat and watched it intently for pretty much the entire time the machine was going. Even after it stopped she kept an eye on it for a good long time just in case. Basically she was as enthralled as a home-schooled child in front of a television - total hypnosis.

It's hard to imagine there are too many people who would spend this amount on the off chance their cat might play along, but at least it kept my kitty calmly entertained for a good long while.


pürminerals Disappearing Ink Concealer 4-in-1 Concealer Pen, Light 3.5 ml
pürminerals Disappearing Ink Concealer 4-in-1 Concealer Pen, Light 3.5 ml
Price: £19.50

4.0 out of 5 stars Just about foolproof, 20 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I rarely wear makeup of any kind and hardly ever bother with concealers, so enlisted the help of my mother in judging how this one worked. She had told me I looked tired that day and did have some dark circles under my eyes (thanks, Mom!) so I figured it was the perfect opportunity to give it a go. I liked the look and feel of the product - quite chunky yet sleek in its silver tube, and totally straightforward how to use. As other reviewers have noted, it took quite a lot of twisting to get any concealer onto the sponge, but I went cautiously and managed to get there eventually and with no wastage. I've got quite fair skin and found the colour matched fine - I've actually got a tendency to go red in the face so would have thought the yellow-y tint others have noted might be an issue but perhaps instead it "corrected" my colouring? At any rate, I didn't feel it looked artificial against my natural skin tone. I liked that you could apply it with the sponge and get just a small amount at a time, but I did find it helped to use my fingertips for some of the blending. It didn't feel like I was wearing any makeup, which was another big plus for me as I hate the heavy feeling some products have. After I'd done one eye, I stood in bright sunlight and my mother gave me a closer examination and declared that it definitely worked, she could no longer see the dark circles and it made a big difference. Thanks again, Mom. I'm pretty sure, due to my laziness with makeup and skincare in general, that this won't be a product I will be buying regularly, but it will come in handy if I can fit a few late nights in! and I think it would be worth considering if you are looking for a good quality concealer.


Scruffs Men's Switchback Safety Boots T52340 Black 7 UK, 41 EU
Scruffs Men's Switchback Safety Boots T52340 Black 7 UK, 41 EU
Offered by JT Atkinson
Price: £43.80

5.0 out of 5 stars Comfortable and Durable, 12 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Hit a hiccup with these immediately when it turned out I'd ordered a size larger than my guinea pig wears.. He was, however, unperturbed by this and insisted on wearing thicker socks and trying them out anyway. He's very hard on boots and tends to wear them until they are literally falling apart, so it seemed worth trying him out on some really heavy duty ones (and vice versa).

These felt really sturdy and looked similar to his usual style, so he was happy enough in that department. He usually walks at least 2 miles a day, so when these got tested it wasn't for a quick run to the corner shop. He did have to wear two pairs of socks - one thick pair and one normal - due to my sizing mistake. But with the socks on, he said the boots were really comfortable and he was able to wear them all day, including the 2 mile walk home, with no discomfort or indeed even remembering that they were new shoes. I don't think you can say fairer than that - if I could buy a pair of shoes (in the wrong size no less) and wear them all day, straight out of the box, and forget they were new, I'd buy them in a minute! Now it's just a case of seeing how long they hold up to his abuse....


Philips HR1875/21 Avance Collection Quick Clean Juicer, 2.5 Litre, 1000 Watt - Brushed Stainless Steel
Philips HR1875/21 Avance Collection Quick Clean Juicer, 2.5 Litre, 1000 Watt - Brushed Stainless Steel
Price: £120.00

5.0 out of 5 stars You get what you pay for, 8 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Many years ago I had a relatively basic juicer which I used enthusiastically for a couple of months then relegated to the back of the cupboard and eventually sold in a carboot sale. My main issues then were that it was difficult to clean and the resulting juice had too much pulp in it. I was recently inspired by a friend's ambroisal watermelon, lime and mint juice however and this seemed a great opportunity to experiment with a higher end model. And it claimed to be cleanable in 60 seconds and a pulp filter on the included jug. All sounded promising!

First impressions, this is a beast of a machine. The box alone was enormous, and the base of the juicer is the size of a small bin as you'd have in a bedroom or bathroom. It feels very chunky and substantial and the parts seemed really secure when clicked into place. You can make up to 2.5l of juice at a go and there is an accordingly-sized jug included, but there is also a "direct pour" spout for if you just want to do one glass - though with the cleanup involved, I'm not sure why you'd bother to make such a small quantity. It also has really effective suction feet to make sure it doesn't move around the worktop while juicing, which is a mixed blessing. Obviously a pulp-covered kitchen is to be avoided, but it does mean that when I have to slide it out to use it (it's so big that I can't fit fruit in if it's under the cupboards), it puts up a little resistance. However, I take this little design touch as a good sign of attention to detail and quality.

Juicing is great. You do need to make sure the "handle" bit is up and clicked into place before the machine will work. There's a lower speed for softer fruits and a higher speed for things like carrots, apples etc. You don't even have to core apples, just throw the whole thing in, and the advice is mainly just remove bits like hard rinds and large stones that you wouldn't eat. It's really efficient - often I don't even have to press on the fruit, it just works its own way through the feed tube and blade, even with things like apple. So very little effort expended there. I found out the hard way that the cover on the jug is not just for pouring - it's cleverly designed so the spout fits right in and stops juice spraying all over your worktops. I haven't tried the direct pour spout as the main one seems quite fixed and it's not entirely clear to me how to change it, but that's not been an issue because, as I said above, I'd rather juice in volume.

Both jug and spout have lips that help to trap much of the pulp (though if you like it, you just don't pour through the lid of the jug for a thicker juice). They're not perfect and it means the spout is leaky when you remove it and the last bit of juice tends to be VERY pulpy, but much better than the juicer I had before in this respect.

As for cleaning - well, 60 seconds was always a grand claim. Basically you're supposed to run water through the juicer whilst running it. I struggled a little with this as you need to catch it in something and the jug was full of juice! But I guess you could transfer the juice or use another bowl or maybe even do it over the sink. But to be honest, the biggest issue in cleaning a juicer is the fibre that collects in the tiny holes of the grate, and I don't think running water through is really going to have much effect on that. So after my first attempt, I haven't bothered with this feature. I simply dismantle the whole machine after I've finished juicing and run everything under very hot water, scrubbing at the blade with a scourer to get it clean. This works well and as long as you do it immediately, it doesn't take much longer than 60 seconds anyway.

I've really enjoyed using this juicer and plan to keep it in pride of place for years to come!


AnySharp Plastic and Stainless Steel Mini Chopper, Black
AnySharp Plastic and Stainless Steel Mini Chopper, Black
Price: £12.49

4.0 out of 5 stars Compact and efficient, 8 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've used similar things before and am always slightly skeptical as they often seem so big and unwieldy and difficult to clean. This is a much nicer size, comfortable to use one-handed and easy to store in a drawer. True it won't chop as much stuff at a time, but it only takes a few pumps of the press to chop things finely so it's easy enough just to move it around your chopping board accordingly. It also breaks apart for cleaning, but the oils in the onions, garlic, herbs etc you're likely to be chopping with this mean that you really need to get it straight under the hot tap when you've finished as the extremely sharp blades make it almost impossible to "scrub" without doing yourself an injury. It also comes with a little cap that the blade sets in when you store it, which is a nice precaution. I did some herbs and onion for a salad with it and it chopped them down very finely with little effort and no tears, so I was quite satisfied. I know the blades will eventually go dull and there's no obvious fix for that, but in the meantime I expect it will be very well used in my kitchen.


Crayola-Colour Alive Mythical Creatures
Crayola-Colour Alive Mythical Creatures
Offered by webstoresrl
Price: £9.18

3.0 out of 5 stars Nice idea but erratic software may prove frustrating, 8 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The concept of this sounds really exciting - a colouring book which can be scanned and then rendered in 3D, with special effects associated with certain colour pens and characters that you can "interract" with through the app. In real life, I found it a little disappointing. My first complaint was with the pictures, which are clumsy and unappealing. Obviously drawings much be relatively simple for a children's colouring book, let alone a scannable app-linked one, to work, but I found these were really ugly and looked somehow cheap. It also seemed to me in use that the backgrounds were distracting and unnecessary, and I suspected they confused the app.

I coloured in the minotaur, making sure to use plenty of red which apparently gave a "flame" effect when scanned. I'd seen comments in other reviews suggesting the app wasn't entirely straightforward so I was pleasantly surprised when, with very little difficulty, my Minotaur was scanned in, a twinkley effect washed over my iPad screen, and then a 3-dimensionally rendered version stood in front of me on the screen, just as I'd coloured him (more or less, the scan is pretty much impossible to line up perfectly so I found I had stray spots of colour where it had not quite lined up. I was initially as excited as a child, watching "my creation" scratch his head and strike body building poses....except that was it. He obviously had a set rota of moves and didn't stray from that. I could take a selfie with the Minotaur, or could have taken a photograph with someone else next to him, but I didn't really see the point - appreciate this would probably be different if you had an actual child who had coloured it!

As for the fire effect, I never got it to work. First off I could never see the button whilst looking at my actual picture, only when I pointed the camera away towards a blank page. Then sometimes - but not always - I got a few flames randomly licking around different parts of the screen. I was never actually able to get this effect to work with the coloured picture. Not sure if that's a kink in the software or my fault, but I'm pretty capable generally so can't think I was being too stupid here.

Likewise with the picture. Turns out that first scan was beginners' luck, because subsequent attempts occasionally worked, but more often seemed to produce nothing. Although I think children would be very excited by this product when it DOES work, I'd guess being the parent of said children, not famed for their patience, trying to work out how on earth to get the flame effect or whatever, would be incredibly stressful, and would put me off buying this as a gift (which I'd initially thought of doing for a few people). A great idea that's not too far off, it seems like Crayola should have spent more time perfecting this before releasing it.


Gourmet Mon Petit Tempting New Fish Recipes with Cod Sardine and Salmon Wet Cat Food (Pack of 8)
Gourmet Mon Petit Tempting New Fish Recipes with Cod Sardine and Salmon Wet Cat Food (Pack of 8)
Price: £11.94

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cat loved it, owner - not so much, 15 Jun. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have very mixed feelings about this product. When I selected it to review, I didn't notice the brand. I haven't purchased Nestle products for years due to ethical reasons, and there is no way I would purchase this in future for that reason alone.

However....if we take my personal ethics out of the equation for the purposes of this review, it's a slightly different story. The thing is, my cat loved this. And she is extremely fussy. In fact, I have never known her to eat ANY soft food apart from Felix. All other attempts to change her brand, even one very expensive organic make I bought her as a treat, have so far been rejected. Even with her usual food she's usually a somewhat picky eater and never terribly enthusiastic. But this stuff she seemed to actively enjoy.

Unfortunately for her, once this case is gone that's it. Even were I willing to support the company, it is considerably more expensive than what we usually buy. And the smaller sachets, although convenient (my cat usually only gets half of one of the larger sachets at a time so these are sized exactly right in that regard), mean a lot of extra, non-recyclable waste.

So yes, this seems to be a very good product, but unfortunately not one we will be using in future.


AmazonBasics Everyday Double Duvet Cover Set, White with 2 pillowcases
AmazonBasics Everyday Double Duvet Cover Set, White with 2 pillowcases
Price: £29.49

4.0 out of 5 stars Good quality basic bedding, 15 Jun. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I'm clearly a cheapskate, because my initial reaction to this item is that it seems kind of pricey for such a basic set. That being said, I love that it's made in the UK and the quality seems very good. I've seen some bedding that was so thin it was like tissue paper, but this feels much more substantial. Research has recently suggested that plain white bedlinen also contributes to better sleep, so this may well be a wise investment. However, I normally stain any white textiles within five minutes of entering a room, so expect this will largely be reserved for guests. And at the end of the day, I still want a bit more excitement for my money.


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