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LittleMoon (loving my life in the rain)

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Nikon 1 J5 Compact System Camera - White (20.8 MP, 10 - 30 mm PD-Zoom Lens Kit, 4K Movie Shooting)
Nikon 1 J5 Compact System Camera - White (20.8 MP, 10 - 30 mm PD-Zoom Lens Kit, 4K Movie Shooting)
Price: £349.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Stylish high-spec compact camera, 25 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I’ve had my current Canon SX20 IS for over 6 years, she’s like an old friend and I know her flaws and her best features like the back of my hand. I had recently been considering getting a smaller, more compact camera, and was delighted to be offered the chance to try this Nikon 1 J5.

I really like the look of the camera and whilst the white might not have been a choice I would have made it is actually very stylish. The design is retro, perhaps more noticeably so in black; the white detailing with silver just looks rather cool! There is an ever-so-slight clunkiness to operating this camera though this may simply be in comparison to my old faithful Canon; I find the lens opening a tad noisy and the shutter-release button isn’t quite as smoothly depressed to focus and then take the photograph. These are minor niggles though, as it really is a neat little camera to use.

Sadly it doesn’t have a viewfinder but the monitor is versatile, 7.5cm x 5cm in size which is large, and is also touch screen. It does of course suffer from the same issues as any monitor in bright light conditions which make it more difficult to see. You can access the vast majority of features using the touch screen, including focussing and tapping to take a picture, or in movie mode tapping the touch screen in order to zoom in on something particular. The monitor folds upwards 180 degrees in order to allow you to take selfies, and downwards 90 degrees so that you can hold the camera above your head and still view your composition.

The camera offers a wide variety of shooting modes, from the reliable auto point and click, programmed auto, shutter speed, aperture priority, manual, moment capture, motion capture (which creates surreal little videos with background music), advanced movie, creative (see images included for a taste of some of the options), and sports.

Some key features: Movies can be recorded in full HD at up to 60fps, with options for slow and fast motion playback. In continuous shooting the camera can take up to 60fps when the focus is fixed, or 20fps in auto focus mode. The shutter itself is silent. The camera can connect to smart phones or tablets running Nikon’s Wireless Mobile Utility App via Wi-Fi. ISO range from 160-12,800 and a top shutter speed of 1/16,000 second.

Included with the camera is a useful 138 page pocket-sized manual, a 1-year warranty, a USB cable, a strap, a battery and charger; and mine came with the 10-30mm lens kit (equivalent to 27-81mm in 35mm ). You will need to provide a micro SD memory card.

The Nikon 1 J5 is fun to use, looks stylish and offers a wide range of features. I think this is a great compact camera for the enthusiastic photographer who is looking for something with a little more excitement and versatility than a simple point and shoot but doesn’t want the bulk, complexity or heftier price tag of a DSLR.
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Remington Reveal Facial Cleansing Brush
Remington Reveal Facial Cleansing Brush
Price: £79.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Fun to use but no better than my eco-friendly facial sponge ..., 12 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This item arrives beautifully packaged in terms of the design of the box; the brush itself is a nice shape and fits comfortably in your hand and is a pale green colour with a slight glittery finish. It comes with 3 ‘heads’ (a massage head and a normal and sensitive brush) and a good quality soft white zip-up ‘beauty bag’ for carrying. It fits in a charger with a round base and a lengthy cable all in white. It would make a really lovely gift for someone who is fastidious about their skincare routine.

The brush is very simple to use with a single silver ‘button’ to control the speed that can be pressed once, twice or three times for using the brush at different speeds. One minute’s brushing is all that is required, and the face is divided into three sections; the brush helpfully pauses after 20 seconds to allow you to move it on to the next section. Wet your face and the brush a little, apply your cleanser to the brush or your face and press the button: that’s all you need to do. The brush can also be used in the shower.

How much more ‘deeply’ this cleanses than using your usual method is difficult to say; the manufacturers claim 10 times in comparison with ‘manual cleansing’. Certainly my skin feels good after using the brush for a couple of weeks, but I haven’t felt there to be a substantial change in the look or feel of my skin in comparison with just applying my cleanser in my regular way with a facial sponge. For a product of this price the user may be entitled to feel that they should be able to notice the difference, but perhaps it depends a lot on your skin type and your current skincare routine as much as anything else.

The brush holds its charge excellently and after 2 weeks still hasn’t required another charge. I do find the bristles on the heads get a bit squashed when I replace the plastic cover. The brush heads should apparently be replaced after 3 months of use although it doesn’t seem (at the time of writing) that they are available from Amazon. The product also comes with a 2 year guarantee that can be extended to 3 years if you register it online within 28 days.

Overall I think this is a good quality product that leaves my skin feeling soft and clean. I’m impressed with the care that has been taken over the design, look and feel of the brush, which make it fun to use, but I would not say the results are any better than those achieved using my eco-friendly facial sponge which also happens to be cheaper, lasts longer and doesn't need charging.

Rexel Advance 240x190mm Subject Notebooks - Black (Pack of 5)
Rexel Advance 240x190mm Subject Notebooks - Black (Pack of 5)
Price: £22.70

4.0 out of 5 stars Smart and sturdy notebooks x 5, 13 Jun. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I’m studying at the moment and thought these notebooks would be really useful for condensing down notes from A4 pages, books and the internet into a smaller more portable format – digital note-taking is not for me. For this purpose the notebook gets the thumbs up, with positives being that pages are perforated and can be removed and have wide ruled lines. I find the plastic wallets (which have 3 compartments in total) useful for holding postcards upon which I have written even more portable notes! It’s also very handy to have a little pen holder on the front and I use it every time I take the notebook out with me.

The plastic covers and fabric covering of the spiral binding do give the book a slightly more sturdy feel than a paper cover but as another reviewer mentioned it is a shame that the whole thing isn’t refillable. I do plan on keeping my notes for a while though, and the cover has been useful against the odd spot of rain when I am revising outside.

The 2 coloured tabs are neither here nor there. I have put two modules worth of work into the first coloured section and there’s still some room left; probably won’t use the coloured tabs at all as they divide the notebook into very large sections.

Like the notebook as it’s smart looking, an easy portable size and the covers stand up well to being bashed about in my rucksack.

Maclaren Replenishing Body Lotion
Maclaren Replenishing Body Lotion
Price: £12.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Soothing & moisturising body lotion ..., 15 May 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Marketed as being gentle enough for mums and babies, this body lotion is designed to appeal to buyers who care quite a lot about what's in their moisturiser and what they're putting onto their skin - and we probably all should, considering that our skin is absorbing all the lotions and potions we're lathering on it. So it's Soil Association certified organic (83% organic), cruelty free, vegan and paediatrician and dermatologist tested. Phew! There's a further list of everything it doesn't contain on the back, such as parabens, phthalates, petroleum derivatives and synthetic perfumes, which is useful for those who have allergies to some of these ingredients.

I don't have problems with dry skin, but it's always nice to have something to lather onto my skin especially after epilating, and this works really well, not irritating my skin and making it feel cool and smooth. The lotion has a rich consistency; I would say perfect actually, not too runny and not too thick. It applies easily although I don't like the slightly sticky feeling that I'm left with before it absorbs in ... once it has absorbed however, it does make my skin feel nice. Is it nicer or smoother than using any other body lotion (I tend to shop around rather than sticking to a single preferred brand), to be honest, not noticeably so. The scent is quite strong initially and is most definitely lavender - there's lavender and chamomile oil in the mix, and linalool but it's the lavender that stands out. I love lavender so am very happy about this, the scent does tend to fade quite quickly.

The 250ml tube I expect to last me some time as I am not a daily user of body lotion; I also find that a small amount goes a surprisingly long way, which makes it reasonably good value for money. The price compared with other organic products is good, especially when compared with 100% organic products, and that is presumably because of the 17% non-organic ingredient content. All in all a good product that makes my skin feel nice and isn't just for mums and babies.

Braun Silk Epil 7 7-561 Wet & Dry Cordless Epilator with 6 Extra Attachments
Braun Silk Epil 7 7-561 Wet & Dry Cordless Epilator with 6 Extra Attachments
Price: £84.49

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for legs!, 12 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
My first ever epilator. My advice if you haven't used one of these things before is to read the instructions and make sure you choose the correct `head' for the job, and don't epilate your underarms first!

If you epilate your underarms first you may never use the thing again and that would be a mistake. Even with the `sensitive area cap' which essentially just cuts down the size of the area to be epilated, doing my underarms is very painful and frankly not worth it. I will be continuing to shave rather than epilate here. The booklet suggests that this pain will reduce over time but I'm not convinced.

Legs however can be epilated brilliantly and efficiently and I've been really impressed with the results so far. I certainly notice that re-growth is much slower than with shaving, and even a week after usage I only have a small amount of new hair (as opposed to a day or so with shaving). I do find I need to go quite carefully in order to catch all the little hairs, but with care and attention I can achieve a good clean hair-free leg in about 10 mins. It's true that the finish is not quite as super-smooth as a shaved leg and I have therefore supplemented with a very cursory sweep of the razor over the bottom halves of my legs on a couple of occasions, but really this isn't necessary as the tiny bits of hair that are less than 0.5mm are not noticeable on me. I did make sure that I shaved my legs before using the epilator the first time, as the instructions recommend use on hairs between 2mm-5mm.

Some people report a larger occurrence of in-growing hairs using an epilator but I haven't found this to be a problem, or at least no more so than with shaving. Again, the instructions recommend using an exfoliating sponge in order to keep the skin cells healthy and allow the new hair growth to penetrate. I do this anyway.

Very useful to be able to use this epilator in the bath and I haven't used it `dry' yet. Neither have I used the face or bikini line options - I refer you back to the underarm note for the reasons I haven't done this. I prefer using the `massage cap' which makes for a more comfortable experience (I experience hardly any pain when epilating my legs) and feels more ergonomic than the `efficiency cap' which supposedly offers a better adaptation to all areas.

The epilator feels sturdy and well-built and the different sections `clip' together nicely; it's easy to clean and dry after use in the bath or shower. It charges fully in about an hour, and once charged can be used for 40 minutes continuously - I haven't needed it for this long, but it hasn't cut out on me yet over a 20 - 30 min period. It comes with a cheap-feeling drawstring bag which is useful for keeping all the attachments in one place. The light is kind of handy sometimes in illuminating hairs that might otherwise be missed and perhaps more useful when shaving in artificial light at night - often though, I find the way that I'm epilating doesn't really allow the light to be very useful, or I am accidentally covering it up.

All in all I think this is an excellent product for epilating legs and I will definitely be using this, rather than shaving, from now on.

Igenix IG2070 Manual Microwave 700 W - 20 L, White
Igenix IG2070 Manual Microwave 700 W - 20 L, White
Price: £53.27

4.0 out of 5 stars Basic, simple, easy to use., 28 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Capacity: 20 litres
Size (H x W x D): 258mm x 439mm x 334
Power output: 650W – 700W

If you want an all-singing all-dancing microwave, then this is certainly not the model for you. However, if you are an occasional microwave user, looking for a simple product that does the job, you could do a lot worse than this easy-to-use Igenix.

I use microwaves mainly for reheating, melting butter and some defrosting; I never buy microwave meals nor do I use it for “cooking” per se. I’m a light user with little requirement beyond these basic functions and am happy to say that this product covers my needs nicely.

This products biggest plus is its simplicity, with only 2 dials it’s ready to use without the need to look at the instruction manual. One dial controls the power which on high produces the full 700W output; the other is a timer dial which can be set for up to 35 minutes. Neither of these functions are particularly awe-inspiring; the power output is pretty low and the timer range up to 35 mins is also basic level … but if you know that you’re never going to use a microwave for more than 10 mins (as I do) then it doesn’t matter a bit. There is also a defrost function available.

The product comes with a free 2 year warranty against electrical or mechanical defects and you can register it online or via an enclosed leaflet and this must be done within 30 days of purchase.

Breville Colour Notes 4-Slice Toaster - Cream
Breville Colour Notes 4-Slice Toaster - Cream
Price: £44.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for bagels, crumpets and homemade bread ..., 8 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)

4-slice toaster
A single browning control 1-9 with halfway points to adjust
Cancel button
High lift: to make the toast easier to remove
Lift and look: you can check on the toast without cancelling the toasting process
Frozen bread: toast bread straight from the freezer
Reheat: reheat toast that has cooled
Illuminated red controls
Removable crumb trays
1 year guarantee

Toast is one of my favourite things in the world, especially for a no rush weekend breakfast with butter and homemade jams or marmalade. It’s the perfect comfort food and makes an excellent companion to stews and soups in the winter. As such I eat quite a lot of it, and tend to toast a lot of things other than your average sized sliced loaf from the supermarket. I need a toaster that is happy with bagels, crumpets and pitta breads as well as larger and less perfectly shaped homemade bread slices. This Breville really is accommodating in all of those areas.

I got the Vanilla Cream colour and it’s nice and warmly off-white colouring would help it to blend in with any kitchen décor, if that is what is important to you. It’s quite large: (length x width x height) 28cm x 27cm x 20cm but light enough to carry out from a cupboard if you don’t have room for it permanently on a work surface. As mentioned above it will happily accommodate a variety of things to be toasted, and the high lift function makes it so much easier to access those smaller articles which can otherwise require a bit of levering out with a wooden spoon! Toasts evenly and gets those bits that might stick out of the top of a smaller toaster!

It has all the features that I’d expect, including crumb trays that help to keep the toaster clean, although I still give it a good shake from time to time to dislodge any bits that get stuck inside. The illuminated red controls (noticeable on the cancel, reheat and frozen buttons) don’t really add anything as far as I am concerned, but do highlight the function currently being used so perhaps may be of some use if you’ve accidentally depressed the wrong button. The build quality is good overall, although the buttons feel just a tad ‘clunky’ when depressed. Also, it doesn’t have a separate browning control for each set of 2 slots, which my parents’ Morphy Richards does … having said that I can’t really imagine this being a significant issue.

I would very much recommend this toaster: it’s good looking, with toasting slots deep and wide enough to toast even over-sized goodies, and it’s very easy to use, clean and look after.

Roberts 'Play Duo' DAB/DAB+/FM RDS Stereo Radio with Built In Battery Charger - Grey
Roberts 'Play Duo' DAB/DAB+/FM RDS Stereo Radio with Built In Battery Charger - Grey
Price: £72.52

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple and effective DAB/FM radio, 3 Jan. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Really pleased with this simple and effective DAB radio from Roberts. Simple because it doesn't contain any advanced features such as an alarm function, but effective because it is user friendly and has everything that I need in order to listen to my favourite radio stations. The radio is a nice size, not too big and light enough to be easily portable; there's also a headphone socket.

I am one of those odd people who read the instruction manuals for products (and the one included is clear and tells you everything you need to know) but you hardly need to read this one as the radio essentially sets itself up once you've turned it on by automatically scanning for all the available services in your area. You can then scroll through the lists selecting the station you want to listen to, and you can add 5 presets for each waveband (ie: five for DAB and five for FM). The Band button selects between DAB and FM and an Info button allows you to change the information shown on the display - my favourite thing is being able to see the name of the singer and song currently playing.

The selling point of this particular model is the built-in battery charger which can take either alkaline batteries or rechargeables - just make sure that you move the switch located in the battery compartment to the correct setting (NiMH or Alkaline) in order to avoid "serious damage to the batteries or radio". It takes 4 AA sized batteries which are not included. Battery life, according to the manual is up to 20 hours (when used for 4 hours a day at normal volume) using alkaline cells. Mine is currently plugged into the mains, and I haven't used batteries in it yet.

The radio comes with a 12 month guarantee, and should you wish to, you can buy interchangeable Roberts Play Bumper covers for £9.99 each.

All in all a good quality basic-level portable DAB/FM radio perfect for the simple pleasure of listening.

Kensington Keyfolio Fit Universal Folio with Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard for 9" and 10" Android Tablets UK QWERTY Layout - Black
Kensington Keyfolio Fit Universal Folio with Bluetooth Wireless Keyboard for 9" and 10" Android Tablets UK QWERTY Layout - Black
Price: £52.33

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful for tablet typists ..., 6 Dec. 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Was lucky to get offered this keyboard as I’ve just got my first tablet, a 10.1” Samsung Galaxy Pro, and it fits perfectly.

The 4 silicon straps hold the tablet very securely in place and don’t cover the screen at all. The inside of the folio case is soft and feels nice to rest your wrist against when typing; it also makes a snug, scratch-free home for the tablet if you decide to keep it on all the time. The outside of the case is black with a ribbed-like appearance, but is smooth to the touch and classical enough in looks. The folio snaps satisfyingly closed thanks to the magnetic flap.

Basic picture instructions come with the keyboard, though if you’re not a visual learner or au fait with using Bluetooth technologies and “pairing” you might not even recognise them as anything other than random pictures. It’s easy enough to bring up the online user manual by going to Kensington’s website – the url for which is helpfully located under the images – and the “Quick Start” will walk you through “connecting” the keyboard to the tablet. It’s quick and easy to do. The keyboard comes with a USB connector that will attach to your tablet’s charger in order to re-charge the battery; fully-charged it has 110 hours working time.

The keyboard itself feels comfortable to use. It’s smaller (obviously) than a laptop keyboard, but still manages to fit fingers to keys without noticeable problems with hitting the wrong keys when typing. The keys are soft and springy, making a quiet clicking noise when depressed – not as clacky as my laptop. I’ve not experienced any problems with the connection between the keyboard and the tablet, and no lag between typing and letters appearing on the screen. There is the option to launch apps from the keyboard; I haven’t really used this function as yet, except to test that it works, but it’s there for those who might find it useful.

If your main reason for owning a tablet is portability then it’s worth knowing that this keyboard does add quite a bit of weight – it is actually heavier than my tablet. The folio only allows for one angle to fix the screen when typing and it’s quite steep (a bit too steep for my personal preference) but this doesn’t cause any real issue and the screen stays in place and resists being easily jolted out.

The Kensington keyfolio also comes with a 2 year limited warranty.

Definitely worth a look if you’re doing a lot of typing on a tablet and don’t object to the extra weight it brings.

Kipling Women's Cayleen Shoulder Bag K12452B94 Party Dot Pr P
Kipling Women's Cayleen Shoulder Bag K12452B94 Party Dot Pr P
Offered by Bexons Gifts
Price: £55.00

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and functional, 21 Nov. 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I’d not heard of Kipling bags before, but having the need for a new little bag I thought I’d give this a try. I’m pleasantly surprised by the quality; nice stitching, for example, and good solid fasteners and zips. The nylon it’s made from means it has some water resistance (not been tested yet) and its feel and texture mean that it’s sporty and durable rather than being showy.

The bag is a good size, and remains nicely compact when carrying the basics (which for me is purse, phone, keys). However, the base expands and the bag can actually accommodate a surprising amount of stuff, should you want it to. For instance, height-wise it just fits in an A5 size notebook, or an average paperback book (though not a 10.1 inch tablet). It has also been stuffed with gloves and my fat glasses case and held them quite comfortably.

The strap is reasonably wide and doesn’t seem to dig in when carrying a heavier load. It’s nice to wear it across the body and the strap is plenty long enough to do this. The main compartment to the bag is zipped, and an outer flap folds over this and secures with a satisfying snap into the magnetic popper. There’s a small pocket at the front with a Velcro fastening and a roomy zipped section at the back which can be accessed without going into the main bag. Inside the main compartment is a zipped pocket, a key fob, a mobile phone pocket and a pen pocket (the latter two are perhaps a smidgen too shallow, but certainly do the job).

I don’t really get the monkey thing if I’m honest (Kipling references aside) but for those of you who do collect them, this is Davina and she (?) will happily suck her thumb, hold her hands together or do a flying monkey thing with both arms outstretched. All rather cute!

Low-key, slightly retro in design and colour, this fun and functional bag is a nice size for those of us who don’t carry everything around, but like to have room for the essentials and a little bit more.

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