Temporary:Secretary UK Fashion Blog | Style Blogger

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Alternative To Apple iPad Mini? Gigaset Tablet QV830 Review (+ Giveaway!)

An Alternative To Apple iPad Mini

Tablets are one of those products that we don't really need but once you get one, it's surprising how attached you become to it. It is no wonder we're so hooked when it has the abilities to entertain, educate, socialise and work from it. Mine goes everywhere with me!

I'm one of those (annoying) people who's super loyal to Apple products, and I have to admit that when I have my heart set on an Apple device, I won't even look at alternative products. Call me simple but I love how easy Apple products are to use and they do last a long time until they eventually die on you! (All good things must come to an end! *Sob*)

However, in the last couple of years though, I have had a gripe at their increasing prices (haven't we all!) and this naturally enabled me to look elsewhere for an alternative. There are so many different options now, all the brands are doing a brilliant job catching up with Apple. I've actually found myself avoided going in to the Apple shop for a while... I still love them but I'll part ways for now until y'know, I win the lottery or something! Ignorance is bliss! 

This past fortnight, I have been cheating on Apple with Gigaset QV830 tablet*, and here's the lowdown!

gigaset qv830 tablet review

To start off with, it only comes in black and 8GB storage space. This will save you time in pondering about which colour to buy and which spec to go for!

Size wise, the Gigaset Tablet has an 8" screen and is really similar to the iPad Mini which measures in at 7.87". I like the size of these types of tablet which fits in to your bag and is lightweight to hold and carry around with you wherever you go. It was really easy to set up too - that's the bit I dread the most so I was happy to get this part out of the way, but it wasn't as painful as I thought it would be! Upon switching the Gigaset QC830 Tablet on for the first time, it guides you through a step-by-step on how to connect with Wi-Fi. It also connects a lot of things to your Google account, so make sure you've already signed up - it will make things a lot easier, but not to worry if you haven't got an account! You can set one up there and then!

gigaset qv830 tablet,

I'm really not familiar with Android and it took me days to get used to it which, of course, was slightly frustrated. Once I got to grips with the navigation, the Tablet became more personal to me as I added my favourite apps via Google Play Store. I had exactly the same as the ones I've got on my iPad: Chrome, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, Tumblr, 4oD, TV Catch Up, YouTube, and all the other apps that keeps me entertained! I could do the exact same things from my usual @tempsec accounts but one thing I didn't do was install the apps I've already paid for on App Store such as like AfterLight and A Beautiful Mess because I would have been required to pay for them again via Google Play, so I just left those for now.

tablet for blogging, blogging tablet

If you're a blogger, you might be interested in the Blogger app. Personally, I don't write my blogposts from smartphone or tablet devices, I find it incredibly limiting and difficult to keep everything aligned and uniformed - but the choice to use the app is there is you need it! It might come in handy to draft rough ideas when inspiration hits you while you're on the go. 

From the Chrome browser, I could continue to read blogs and articles, and leave comments or join in with discussions.

The screen resolution is decent at 1024 x 768, and 160pixels per inch. It is touch screen with all the intuitive and responsive tap, swipe and pinch controls. There is a front and back camera too. The back camera is 5 megapixels and the webcam is 1.2 mega pixels - both which matches the same camera spec as my iPad Mini. 

The battery life is supposed to last eight hours but on a full charge, I found that it lasted around 4-5 hours. Perhaps I didn't do the things that you have to do in order to prolong battery life like quitting apps and turning down the brightness of the screen, but I struggle to make it last the eight hours that it claims. Still, 4-5 hours is still a pretty long time, so I'm happy with that!

There are a lot of specs and features that are either similar or exactly the same as the iPad Mini and you might think the Gigaset will come at an equally expensive price tag. Surprisingly, the Gigaset Tablet retails at £99.99 and in fact, it's currently on offer at Curry's right now for £69.99 at the moment! I think it's a great price for a device that does so much, and you don't have to feel guilty for buying it or putting it on your Christmas wishlist! I sure felt the buyer's remorse when I got my iPad because it initially felt like an expensive toy as I already have an iPhone and a laptop. Although I do use it a lot for work, and it goes everywhere with me on meetings and long journeys (laptop is too heavy to carry!) I have eventually got my money's worth! I just wish I had shopped around for an iPad alternative because if I had opened my eyes, I would have noticed that there are some great products out there for a cheaper price. I shall not be an Apple snob no more! 

Now, here comes the best bit! I have one to GIVE AWAY! 

All you have to is submit your entries via Rafflecopter below!

Please remember to adhere to the entry terms as they will be moderated. The prize will be a brand new Gigaset QV830 Tablet in black and this giveaway is open to UK residents only. You can enter as many times as you want, the options will show up on Rafflecopter. The more entries you submit, the more chances to win. 

Competition is for the product shown above and detailed above in this blogpost (one Gigaset QV830 tablet in black). Entries must be made via Rafflecopter widget. Entries are moderated so please ensure that adhere to the giveaway entry terms. We reserve the rights to amend or withdraw offers at any time. No cash alternatives are available. Free prize draw, no purchase necessary. Giveaway will end on the date stated on the Rafflecopter widget. One winner will be selected from Rafflecopter after the closing date to receiving one box of this prize set. I will contact the winner via email after closing date, the details of which will only be used to post your prize to you. Please allow up to 14 days for delivery. A new winner will be selected if we do not receive an email respond within 3 working days. This giveaway is open to UK residents only.

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Monday, October 20, 2014

Autumn | Photo Diary

autumn, conkers, autumnal photograph
Autumn in england,

I took an break from my laptop and computer for the whole weekend which was very unusual, but I sure could get used to it! I still needed my Instagram and Pinterest fix from my phone (those platforms don't require much brain power - so they don't count!) but I didn't read any emails, tweets, blogposts, or articles for two whole days and it was nice to switch off from it... even if I did get a bit twitchy from time to time thinking that I *needed* to do something work-related!

Instead, I caught up with friends, went out for a long walk, took loads of photos and ended the weekend with cosy snuggles from Oscar and Bonnie!

What have you guys been up to lately? x

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Friday, October 17, 2014

Yankee Candle Halloween | Ghostly Treats

yankee candle ghostly treats, yankee candle ghost tea light holder
yankee candle ghost tea light holder
yankee candle ghostly treats review
yankee candle ghostly treats review

And the award for the CUTEST Halloween product goes to.... Yankee Candle! I know that 'cute' and 'adorable' are not words that you would associate with Halloween but if it's ever a toss up between a cute ghost and a gory zombie head, I know which one I'm going to pick!

You guys know how cray cray I am about candles! Does a girl really need that many candles? But of course! ...Ok, I don't *need* that many candles but I now have such a big collection that at any given time, with candles, I can transform my apartment into any season, any mood, any occasion and evoke (almost) every memory you can possibly think of! If you want Christmas to come early, an Indian Summer perhaps, the smell of Spring and freshly cut grass, or even the memories of sipping a fruity cocktail on a beach holiday, I can create it through the medium of candles! 

I couldn't really tell you what Halloween smells like but according to Yankee Candles, the main smells are sweet, spicy and toasty! Toffee Apple always reminds me of this time of year but I suppose that's more speficially Bonfire Night than Halloween! 

Yankee Candle sent me their Ghostly Treat candle from their Halloween collection and it is really really lovely (again, 'lovely' is not a word to describe Halloween... but let's say that the candle is spookily lovely!) It is supposed to remind you of sharing spooky tales around a crackling campfire, whilst toasting gooey marshmallows. I really love the packaging design of the housewarmer jar which has an element of spooky and fun. Ghostly Treats is a new addition to the Yankee Candle range and it has a toasted marshmallow fragrance and it is a sugary sweet scent, but it's not as sickly as you would imagine. If a candle is too sweet, it makes me feel a bit nauseas but Ghostly Treats is pleasant and just the right amount of sweetness. It is inspired by grouping around the campfire and sharing scary tales. The other Halloween candles are Witches Brew which is a sweet patchouli scent and Candy Corn which is of course, candy corn fragrance! Candy corn isn't popular in the UK and I'm not sure where they sells it, so I don't know what it smells like but I'm sure it's a tasty one! All of them come in tea light box (£6.99), wax melts (£1.49) votives (£1.89) and the medium jars (£16.99). The jars are the ones with the stronger scent pay off, although if you don't fancy anything as strong and lingering, the tea lights and votives are a nice, affordable option.

Along with the candle, I also received the most adorable tea light holder. It's not your average tea light holder, it's an ornament in itself and I love it! It's so cute and cheerful! I'm going to put this out on my window sill instead of a pumpkin this year. There are three different ghost faces to pick from and I believe the one I've got is the 'Ghost Wink' which is currently sold out on the Yankee Candle website, but the Happy Ghost is the only one still available and it's priced at £14.99! They're also stocked in Clintons and Amazon too. Other candle accessories for Halloween include a Spooky Lantern, Black Cat Jar Holder, Spider Web Votive holder and lots more!

Yankee Candles are available to buy on their website or you can use their store locater to find your nearest stockist. 

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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Claudia Louch Skincare | Beauty Review

beauty blogger uk, claudia louch skincare

Claudia Louch Skincare available at www.claudialouch.com

For a few months, I have been trying out some skincare products from Claudia Louch who is a natural holistic skincare specialist. Claudia Louch's range of products help those with skin condition, so they're more of a treatment than your usual skincare. At her Harley Street clinic in London, she offers consultations and creates bespoke treatments for each patient, so if you have any skin concerns, Claudia is a specialist who really knows her stuff.

In addition to the services that the clinic offers, there's also a skincare range that you can try at the comfort of your own home. All of the products in Claudia Louch's range are made from natural ingredients, and does not contain parabens or SLS. They are also non-comedegenic which means the substance does not block pores. Here's how I got on with these three skincare products this past couple of months:

claudia louch botanical cleansing lotion review
Claudia Louch Botanical Cleansing Lotion* (£37.40)

You know me, I'm an absolute huge fan of cleansers of all types, mainly creams and lotions but I'm not at all fussy as long as it doesn't strip my skin or cause a bad reaction. This Botanical Cleansing Lotion comes in a huge 240ml tube for £37.40 and because of the size, I initially thought you could use generously, so I squeezed a 50pence sized amount on to my hand and applied it to my face. Afterwards, my skin felt tight and extremely dry, and I knew something wasn't right so I had to stop using it for a few days as I tried to rectify the dryness that the cleanser had caused. I realised I had used far too much of the rich formula and too much of a good thing won't be good for long, as Sam Smith says! You literally only need a pea-sized amount for a gentle cleanse, and it's more than enough for it to be effective.

The key ingredients are coconut, sugar beets, chamomile, aloe vera, cucumber and japanese green tea. All of these ingredients in this botanical cleansing lotion are formulated to cleanse, tighten and soothe. Even after using a small amount, I find my skin on the dry side (of course, not as dry as when I used a big blob of the cleanser!) so I will reserve this on the days my skin plays up. Every month, I get oily skin on the odd day or two and when I do, I'll have this cleanser to save the day! If your skin is prone to oil, I recommend this as it seems to just absorb without stripping.

claudia louch mineral mud mask review
Claudia Louch Mineral Mud Mask* (£52.50)

Although mud and clay masks are quite hit and miss for me, they are quite ideal because I can apply it, wait a couple of minutes for it to dry and then pop my glasses back on and get on with life! I can't do this with gel and cream masks because, of course, the consistencies of these means they don't ever set so I can't wear my specs... which isn't so convenient for me because I can't see without them. All I can do is lie in my bed or sit on the sofa and go on Buzzfeed, or something! But I'm keen on mud masks, they are ideal for me and this one from Claudia Louch has worked wonders! 

Applying only a thin later over my face with a brush, the arctic mineral mud mix tones and detoxifies skin, leaving it to feel smooth, firm and free from impurities. It also shrinks pores, but I can't say that I have noticed a huge difference in that area. There is a tightness when the mask sets completely but that's nothing to be alarmed about because that's normal for mud masks. It is expensive but looking at my collection of face masks, £40-£50 is around the price I normally pay for a face mask. My general thoughts on splurging on masks is that they're supposed to be a little indulgent and a bit of a treat for your skin, and when it comes to a product that settles and sinks in to the deeper layers of my skin, I'm going to try and splash out.

claudia louch jojoba day moisturiser review 
Claudia Louch Jojoba Day Moisturiser* (£52.50)

I may have got cleansers, scrubs and face masks down - I know what works and what I need to stay away from - but when it comes to moisturisers, I go in blind. Get it right and I've got smooth, flawless skin. But get it wrong and I'll be paying for it for a few days! I'm very much still in an experimental phase with face moisturisers and I am really careful with which ones I choose to use. I do have a favourite but I want to opt for something with more natural ingredients in and less synthetics. So along came this Jojoba moisturiser which is 94% natural.

This is actually the second Claudia Louch moisturiser that I've tried the previous one being the Hydrating Mango Day Cream which I really love but I couldn't use that on a daily basis because of how oily it can make my skin if I used too much of it (after all, the Mango Day is a hydrating formula made specifically for dry skin). The Jojoba Day Cream suits my skin a lot more and it is one that I apply every day (can't live without it at the moment!) Jojoba oil is an anti-inflammatory, which helps to dissolve excess sebum which can block pores and cause breakouts. This face cream makes my skin feel hydrated, protected and soft, and I think I've found a moisturiser that can stay in my skincare routine (for now!).

All three of these are available in the Claudia Louch shop. Delivery to the UK is free of charge.

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Wednesday, October 15, 2014

LUSH Halloween 2014 Products

lush halloween 2014 product, lush halloween collection,
lush wizard bubble bar, lush wizard, lush halloween 2014
lush sparkly pumkin, lush sparkly pumpkin bubble bar, lush halloween 2014
lush lord of misrule, lush fairy ring soap, lush the sparkler, the sparkler bath bomb

LUSH Halloween 2014 Collection

Hubble bubble, toil and trouble! Here's what in store for Halloween at LUSH this year!

One of the new shaped bath bombs, this yellow wand is inspired by sparklers. It has popping candy in so when it touches the water, you'll hear the crackling noise which recreates the sound of exploding fireworks. If you're a fan of the Rose Jam shower gel, you will love the scent of the Sparkler because it contains the same key ingredient of Organic Rose Absolute.

This is a similar one to the Sparkler except it's purple instead of yellow. It actually smashed in transit so I could only photograph a small part of it (this is shown in the first photo, bottom right hand side) but from what I can see, the colours are deep blue, neon green and vibrant purple. It also contains popping candy and also sparkly white stars which will shimmer in the water. 

You might remember Lord Of Misrule from last year but if this is the first time you've heard of it, Don't let first impressions fool you! The green exterior dissolves and turns the water in to a wine colour. It has an earthy blend of black pepper, patchouli and Fair Trade vanilla.

I think this is suppose to be a wizard's hat, or could it be a face and the two holes are the yes? Either one, it is the cutest one out of this lovely bunch! It's a bubble bar so you crumble a bit of it up under running tap and it will slowly melt and turn the water glistening purple (my fave colour!). The scent of Wizard is ylang ylang oil, juniper berry , fennel oil, and tangerine. Sounds perfect for Halloween!

I know what you're thinking... it looks like something... and it's not a pumpkin! I wish they could have put something green on the top of it but nevertheless, is is absolutely covered in sparkly gold glitter! It actually did have bits of cinnamon stick on the top but it fell off. As it is a bubble bar, you can divide this up and use a bit each time. It has an uplifting smell of orange flower, blackcurrant, grapefruit, juniper berry and lime! 

Fairy Ring Soap, £4.10 for 100g
I really like LUSH soaps, and even a small block of it lasts for ages! If you pop over to the product page, you can see that the original form of the soap (before it's sliced in to blocks) is a toadstool mushroom fairy house - very cute!. The soap itself contains shiitake mushrooms, which is very unique! I don't think any of us can say we've washed ourselves with a product that contains mushroom, this is certainly a first for me! Shiitake mushrooms has anti-ageing properties and is filled with nutrients that improves blood circulation and are antibacterial. Don't worry though, it doesn't smell like mushrooms! The ingredients include myrrh oil, patchouli, coconut oil, ylang ylang and jasmine.

These products are now in store at LUSH Cosmetics and can also be purchased online. The Sparkler, Northern Lights and Lord Of Misrule are available through to Christmas but the Wizard, Sparkly Pumpkin and Fairy Ring are limited edition and will only be around until the end of October. There are also Halloween gift sets available from £13.25.

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