Saturday, February 23, 2013

Cherry Cosmetics Review

If you are looking for an ethical, passionate small business to support when shopping for natural cosmetics, consider Cheery Cosmetics as one of your top choices.  Director, Leah has been formulating her massive range for over 8 years with products including mineral foundations, lipsticks, eyeshadows, lip balms, eco friendly household cleaners, cosmetic brushes and bags, palm oil-free soaps and pet care. All of the products are vegan friendly and hand made in Australia using personal formulas.

Stocked in a few boutiques both in Australia and overseas, these natural and appealing products are competitively prices and represent great value for money. Delicious and luscious, Cherry Cosmetics are a treasure trove of gorgeous items designed to enhance the wearers beauty.  From paint pots of lip gloss to natural and nourishing lip balms, cruelty free lipsticks, through to silky mineral foundations, there is a stunning range to choose from.

For a gorgeous and mysterious goth look, the perfect an vegan raven lipstick compliments dusk and amethyst colours. Capture the dewy natural look with shimmer shades and matte lip pots. With 36 share of colours, including mattes, shimmers and glittery sparkles, there is no way you will get sick of the range or the looks you can create.

Cherry Cosmetics offer a custom made service should their range not capture the exact colour you are looking for. A specific colour to suit an outfit or try a new look can be created kept on file should you want to reorder.

Cherry Cosmetics also produce  a  large range of all-natural, palm-free, cruelty-free products to nourish, care and delicately scent body and hair. All products are handmade in small batches to ensure the highest quality and freshness.  One of my favourite body products is the hempy lemon soap, infused with tangy essential oils and designed to assist with skin conditions and revitalise the tone of tired skin.  Delicately scented, its smooth lather both cleansed and soothed. The extensive range includes other favourites such as honey and vanilla and cranberry with lime.

I have always avoided foundations in the past as I have found them lumpy, streaky and either creates an unnatural glow or that it slides off with the heat in under an hour of application. I was hesitant to use a loose powder as I had concerns it would accentuate the growing number of fine lines appearing on my face. Imagine my delight to discover that the mineral foundation not only left my skin feeling silky and smooth, but covers the few blemishes I had, without highlighting lines. A tiny amount gave excellent coverage, allowing my skin to breathe and look natural.  Mineral powders suit older, sensitive and dry skin as it doesn’t stick or clog pores.  I had no issues with the coverage fading over the day. I was extremely happy with the dewy and natural look this foundation offered me. Mineral foundation is also a healthier, more natural choice as it doesn’t contain fillers, chemicals, dyes and perfumes, which can either irritate skin or cause long term damage , including premature wrinkles.
Leah is passionate about the ingredients used and the benefits cruelty free products have.  After discovering the devastation to rainforest and its animals that palm oil has, not only did Leah develop her own formulation to replace this ingredient, but she also switched from paraffin and gel ingredients to ethically sourced soy. The company donates 5% of sales which is channeled into the AOP ( Australian Orangutan Project). 10 % of sales on the pet care line  is donated to The Painted Dog Conservation. 

Cherry Cosmetics are constantly developing new products and new colour palettes as they actively listen to the consumer. Many products can be ordered in tiny sample packs, with the larger items easily ordered online from the website.  They are currently offering beauty students and make up artists a massive 15% discount on their cosmetics range. 

Photos courtesy from Cherry Cosmetics.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Blingles Theme Pack & Crystal Pets Review

Blingles are a great way to get some bling and pizazz into the holiday season! My daughter adores anything that sparkles and shines, but these products are equally enjoyed by boys.  We have the Blingles Accessory Pack as well as the Crystal Pets Pack. Between them, there are over 400 gems, 2 gem mats, glue rolls, trinket box, photo frame, key ring, gift cards, and a huge variety of design templates.  With craft kits always a big hit in this household, there were more than enough materials to add sparkle and shine to everything in the wardrobe.

The concept itself is simple, with clear instructions in the packaging, to ensure a great result is achieved immediately. If you’re not sure about creating your own design, there are some great templates that you can use. My 7 year old quickly decided she wanted to branch out into her own artwork and was delighted with the results she achieved. A huge animal fan, my son worked on a number of puppy and dog outlines, delighted with what he produced. The small gemstone bling that will stick to practically anything, including clothing and shoes.   To make a ‘blingle’, a template is chosen ( or you can make your own up), gems positioned onto the no-mess glue sheet and it peeled apart to then stick wherever its needed. The high quality glue roll ensures that the design will stick to most things. he kit comes with a special pen that makes it easy to pick up the gems.
The age range for Blingles is suggested for chidren girls ages 6 and up, although perhaps unless they have good fine motor control, a little older will ensure there are no tears or frustrated designers. In saying that, younger children will have just the same deslight in creating when working alongside an older sibling or parent. I really appreciated the tidy tray for all of the materials, keeping them in order and easily accessible. 

Design It, Press It, Bling It!  It really is that simple. Refills of both the gems and transfer glue rolls are readily available.

Note that the kit has tiny pieces, so if you have younger children around you’ll want to take extra care that they don’t go into mouths. The Blingles Kits by Moose Toys are available from major toy stores and were at supplied to us by the wonderful team at  Undertow Media to review.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Dread Pet Python Hair Accessory Review.

Looking for a practical hair accessory which is a little left of centre for your crazy hair? Check out 'Dread Pet Pythons' a handmade creation by SpiraLocks. 

SpiraLocks are a unique and practical idea created by two passionate stay at home mums who wanted an ethical, funky and safe way to tie up their dreads. Although originally designed to be used for dreadlocks, their range of hair accessories are perfect for anyone with hair which is difficult to manage, thick or flyaway. Those of us with crazy hair will understand the frustration and damage regular elastic style hair bands cause.  Normal hair ties are often not stretchy enough to encompass the mass of hair for pony tails, which causes the style to loosen fall out and look scrappy. Trying to tie up dreadlocks, or thick hair into tight styles can cause headaches or damage to the hair. 

SpiraLocks have created a beautiful range of personalised hair accessories which will encompass your locks, ensuring the style is secure the whole day. They are made with a variety of fabrics, often recycled or hand dyed and feature a soft wool bendable shape to wrap around your tresses, which won’t damage or pull your hair.  They are super easy to use - taking only a few seconds to secure hair into a neat style which will stay like that all day. There are a variety of lengths available, which can be used to create elaborate updos, pony tails or “piggy tails”.  My 7 year old daughter has a matched pair in school colours she uses every day to keep her mad hair in check. 

Not only is SpiraLocks a home business supporting two fabulous mums, it also uses ethically farmed wool from a small community in Africa and vegan using certified organic cottons and hemps and vintage fabrics. The pricing depends on the complexity of detail on individual pieces, but ranges from $40 - $60 for most designs. These styles come in a simple range for everyday wear and elaborate to a fancy style and the ladies welcome enquiries for special designs. 

Specifically reviewed today is a really funky design, perfect not only for Halloween, but as a talking point everywhere you go. Dread Pet Pythons are so lifelike, people who notice them in your hair will often get a fright or become concerned that you are unaware of your ‘friend’. 50 cm in length, these pythons secure your hair with enough ‘snake’ to creep up over your head or down the side of your neck. My black headed python featured black wooden bead eyes and a lifelike silky silvery skin.  I have had so many comments about it, its become the favourite hair tie for everyday use. 

Check out their facebook page and look out for links to new creations and designs every week. Prices are posted under each photo, with orders taken only on facebook. Postage is fast and the customer service is outstanding. These ladies are enthusiastic about their creations and keen to share their passion. Dreadlocked or just crazy hair - you will love SpriaLocks and will wonder why you put up with Elasticised bands for so long.

I’d love to thank Peta for sending me some of her designs to test.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Doctor Dreadful Snot Shots Review

Doctor Dreadful keys into kids macabre delight in gross things. Fancy picking a huge nose and eating your findings?  Perhaps digging out earwax Shrek would be proud of is more your style? Just time time for Halloween and the myriad of end of term parties, Doctor Dreadfuls kits are sure to bring that disgusting edge to serving edible snot and goo that only kids clamber for.

My son was engrossed by the Snot Shots, insisting everyone in the family were fed a long slimy tendril of snot, controlled by a syringe at the end of the large warty nose. Just as disturbing was the ear wax oozing out of a flaccid ear. 

Although my children insisted that the sweet paste merging out of the plastic orifices was tasty, I found it a little too sweet and a little grainy. The nose and ear dispensers are sturdy, though a little fiddly to clean after all of the goo has been consumed. 

The recipes are easy to follow with every nauseating ingredient safe to consume. The packets have enough inside to try a few batches and certainly enough for a party trick. Children as young as seven will be able to mix and insert the contents into the facial cavities in order to gross out the next dinner guest.

A great addition for theme parties or Halloween and a firm favourite with both boys and girls between 7 and 13. Its a great gift idea and defiantly worth looking at for the younger teens who are hard to buy for.

Doctor Dreadful Snot Shots by Moose Toys is available from Toys R Us and all leading toy shops. 

My son would like to thank the wonderful people at  Undertow Media for sending us the product to review. 

Friday, October 26, 2012

Blingles Sparkling Princess Review

Blingles promises to add a creative sparkle to all your accessories.The Sparkling Princess designs features stars, hearts, crowns, lips and music notes, perfect for the young princess in the household. However, with their new line up fo theme packs, kids can choose designs they are interested in. Adding some pizzaz to noteooks, ipods, handbags and belts has never been easier for young designers

Although marketed towards the tween market, the templates are easy to follow and once young children are shown the process, they will be able to design and create their own bling with little assistance. To make a blingle, a template is chosen, gems positioned onto the no-mess glue sheet and it peeled apart to then stick wherever its needed. The high quality glue roll ensures that the design will stick to most things. 

Each kit is generous with the amount and variety of gemstones and it was good to see that refills of both the gems and transfer glue rolls are readily available. The tiny gemstones can be a little fiddly to handle and smaller hands may find it frustrating to position when creating some of the more detailed designs. The kit is an attractively set out with spots to store all of the equipment and consumables. 

The wide variety of deigns possible allows the creator to use the bling in a wide range of places. An accent for a handmade card, giving a gift photo frame a special lift, a sparkle for sunglasses or personalising a phone or laptop; the possibilities are endless. 

The Sparkling Princess Blingles kit was enthusiastically received and with immediate professional results, its expected it will remain a favourite craft activity for a while. With a wide range of designs to choose from, the difficult decision will be how much bling is too much?  

Blingles Sparkling Princess by Moose Toys is available from Toys R Us and all leading toy shops. My daughter would like to thank the wonderful people at  Undertow Media for sending us the product to review. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Angry Birds Space Plush Toy Review.

Unless you have been living under a rock for years, you will have heard the unmistakable taunting laughter and soundtrack music to Angry Birds, one of the most successful games of 2010. With over 12 million copies of the game has been purchased through Apple’s App Store, and over 1 billion copies on other platforms, its popularity lays in its addictive, deceptively clever and challenging puzzles. The franchise has expanded its products to items from lunch boxes to keyrings, with its fans not necessarily children. Its almost inconceivable that there is a movie, and adventure theme park dedicated to this game.

With the launch of Angry Birds Space, a collaborative effort with NASA, comes a new line of plush toys which include original characters, alongside new heros. The limited series is currently available in three sizes, 5", 8" and a small backpack clip. Velvety soft and invitingly squeezable, these rotund characters emit three distinct authentic sounds from the game, making them a must for the serious Angry Birds Collector.

 The plush toys are well made, with stitching both strong and close together, giving the impression that they will endure some friendly slingshot fights and re - enactments. The colours are vibrant and true to character. The tiny costuming and embroidery shows a good standard of attention to detail in the design and construction of the toy.

There are no hard, sharp or detachable parts and with the noise activator deep inside, the Angry Bird Plush would be a suitable toy for children aged 1 and upward. The pricing is comparable to other licensed plush toys. The only complaint which could be made about these toys is that the flat noise button, hidden deep inside the soft belly of each of the characters, can be difficult to find in order to set off. With the repetitious maddening laughter of joyous birds, this may not be a negative aspect.

 Moose World Enterprise distribute these officially licensed products through a number of venues making them accessible online and in most toy and variety high street stores. With Father's Day celebrated in many countries shortly, this may be a present which will bring a smile to Dad's face, rather than risk the traditional socks or handkerchief gift offerings.
  Angry Birds Space 8” Talking Plush RRP $25
  Angry Birds Space 5” Talking Plush RRP $14
  Angry Birds Space Back Pack Clip RRP $8

 Disclosure: The author was grateful to have been sent a plush toy to review.

 Product photos Via Wiki 

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Air Doll (2009)

A heartwrenchingly beautiful urban fairytale, Air Doll seeks to answer what it is to be human. Hirokazu Kore-Eda directs the film adapted from the manga of the same title with sensitivity and precision. Reminiscent of Hollywood films such as Splash, MannequinBlade Runner, Real Life Doll and even Pinnocchio, Air Doll pushes the boundaries of relationships with inanimate objects whilst exploring the desperate isolation of our empty urban existence.

Middle-aged Hideo is a waiter who dotes on a lifesize sex doll he keeps at home as his wife.  He dresses her, takes her out for walks ( in a wheelchair) and talks to her over dinner; highlighting not only his isolation and loneliness, but of his disconnection with other humans and society.

Bae Doo-Na portrays Nozomis , the sex doll, granted life with an whimsical, fae like presence, delighting in the adventure before her. Her child like wonderment is fresh and endearing.  She explores downtown Tokyo, observing the masses but returns every evening to take her place as the complacent plastic wife.

Although seeing a young lady wandering the streets in the middle of the day in a skimpy maids outfit may raise eyebrows within most western societies, the Japanese tend to be very open with eccentricities without highlighting or commenting on them.

Despite Bae being naked a great deal of time, the film does not come across as crass or pornographic. It presents questions about the role of women within society through Nozomis belief that her only function is to provide sexual pleasure. However, morality is not highlighted within the film and appears to be skirted around neatly.

The main plot follows Nozomi taking on a job at a nearby video shop and the blossoming love she develops with a co-worker.  After her owner/ husband replaces her with a new plastic sex doll, she seeks her designer, shocked to find that she is a “low rent model.”

Secondary characters encountered throughout the film all search for connection.

Of particular note, the transformation scene is beautifully shot, where the doll creeps slowly out of bed, squeaking its plastic way down to a window and gradually turning to soft skin.

The climax had the opportunity of being incredibly touching, but like the air doll, whimpers as the hot air escapes slowly.

The film leaves the viewer saddened at the human condition of isolation. It swaps quickly from cynical to mystical and at nearly two hours long, may drag for many. Its definitely one of those ‘foreign films’ that needs to be on your list, if not only for Bae Doo-Na’s huge eyes and half smile.

Theatrical Poster Via Wiki