Monday, 31 July 2017

Fabulous Finds For July 2017

July is the month when all thoughts turn to summer holidays, even if the weather isn't great. My Fabulous Finds for this month include super value suncream, flip flops, beer, activities for children, bodywash for after swimming and a couple of great blogging finds (contains some affiliate links). I also had an extra post this month for Free From Fabulous Finds with a great selection of dairy free, gluten free and vegan foods.

A collage showing all 9 fabulous finds for July 2017 as detailed below


Baylis & Harding Jasmine & Apple Blossom Luxury Hand Gel

I always try and have a little bottle of anti-bacterial alcohol gel in my handbag (or more normally my changing bag), but they can be a little boring and leave your hands dry. Baylis & Harding sent me their Jasmine and Apple Blossom Luxury Hand Gel to try. As well as killing 99.9% of bacteria it moisturises your hands and smells like you have used posh hand cream. The 50ml bottle easily fits in my bag making it great for a (very rare) night out or to grab after an alfresco nappy change.

A 50ml bottle showing a white hand gel with a silver coloured lid

Drop It

One of the sponsors of the Christmas In July Festival was Drop It. I had never heard of the service before, but it is genius. You can drop your shopping off at one of their locations and they will take it home for you. One of the reasons I rarely shop in the West End is because once my hands are full of bags shopping becomes a pain, instead I go to shopping centres I can drive to so I can put my bags in the car then head back to more shops. I love the idea that I can leave my shopping with them and they will take it home for me. To test the service out they offered the opportunity to leave the Christmas in July goody bags with them for them to take home. I look my bags to them, they sealed them inside clear plastic bags and then delivered them the next day. Not having to take lots of bags on the train was really nice. The delivery driver arrived just as I had put Little to bed so it was perfect timing. They had taken really good care of my bags which contained class and other delicate objects.
They only have drop off points in the West End at the moment (e.g. lots of shops in Oxford Street and Regent Street), but they will deliver anywhere in the country. A day pass (for as many bags as you want) only costs £10 and you can easily find all the shops on their app.

Plastic bags saying "Drop It" all over them showing bags inside

Suncream

Aldi kindly sent a selection of  Lacura suncream for my family and I was really impressed. They are amazing value and have a 5 star UVA rating (it's surprising how many suncreams don't). The SPF 30 sun spray has recently been revealed as the lowest costing sunspray to pass Which SPF testing. The sprays are really easy to apply and the little bottle is perfect to stick in our changing bag incase there is unexpected sun. We've not had a lot of really sunny days to test it out, but so far neither girl has had a reaction to the Extra Sensitive Sun Spray (Big Sister in particular has sensitive skin which gets worse when she's really hot and sweaty). You can get enough for your whole family for the price of one bottle of some branded suncreams so check these out in your local Aldi.

5 bottles of Lacura suncare on grass and a towel including: SPF30 lotion, SPF30 spray, SPF50 Extra Sensitive Sun Spray and Aftersun spray

Gentleman’s Wit Beer

I don’t drink much these days, but that means I want to make sure I really enjoy what I do drink. On a sunny day I asked G to bring me home some wit (white) beer and this is what arrived. I’m going to assume the name is a pun rather than Camden Town Brewery being sexist. They have taken a traditional Belgian white beer recipe and added bergamot and lemon zest making it refreshing and perfect for a summer afternoon.

A beer bottle with a yellow label held out with a toddler in the paddling pool in the background

Portable Photo Studio

My house is generally a bit of a mess, it’s what happens when you have children and don’t spend every single minute of the day tidying. This can make taking photograph’s a challenge because there is always mess in the background unless I’m very clever with camera angles. I bought a small cheap light box and it was ok, but too small for most things so I after much deliberation I decided to buy the Amazon Basics Portable Photo Studio and I love it. I was undecided for some time because of the price, but it is great. It is compact when folded so easy to store, but it’s so easy to open out that I’m happy to do it just for one photo. It contains lights and two holes so you can take the photo from above or from the front. It is large enough for most of the products I receive to review, I just need to get some props to style the photo’s now and maybe some different backdrops (it only has white).
I will admit that I nearly didn’t include the light box in this round up because of the challenge of trying to take a picture of it.
A black pop up box

Ebookadabra

Since M started to read everything late last year we have been getting through a lot of books. Fortunately we own a lot and go to the library fairly often because she enjoys the challenge of reading a new story. We were given a free trial of Ebookadabra and M loved being able to persuade me to let her go on the iPad to read. Apparently it’s more of a treat to go on Ebookadabra than to read a physical book. This app has a good selection of books at different reading levels and it’s really easy to navigate. One of the nice features is you can record an audio version of the books so if your child can't read yet or you just want to record a bedtime story for when you aren't there. You can download Ebookadabra from the app store.

A young girl in a yellow Belle Disney dress looking at a reading book on an ipad

Havaianas

I live in flip flops from Spring to Autumn, but I normally just buy a cheap pair and wear them until they fall apart. The flip flops of choice around town where I live (Loughton) are definitely Havaianas and I thought I would see if they were really as good as people are saying. I had a look and I couldn’t bring myself to pay the price of the popular diamante ones, I also decided against the thin strapped ones as I was worried they would be more likely to rub. I went for the Pink ones and I am so happy with them. I have worn them for long active days without any discomfort. I’m also really impressed that the foam hasn’t compressed at all yet. I’m still not convinced they will last me longer than one summer, but I am tempted to get the more expensive ones.

Pink and purple havaianas covered with sand on a wooden boardwalk dusted with sand

Childs Farm 3 in 1 Swim

I was given a bottle of the Childs Farm 3 in 1 Swim at Blog On and we have used it a few times after M’s swimming lessons and noticed it smells nice. While on holiday last week we spent a couple of hours every day in the pool and afterwards the whole family have used this body wash (I don’t have space to take more than one bottle to the pool). It combines body wash, shampoo and conditioner and left my hair and skin clean without a chlorine smell. Most surprisingly my hair looked ok despite not using a separate conditioner on my super dry hair for a week. This is a great product to use after swimming and it’s been going in the girl's evening bath too as we forgot to pack bubble bath. It’s great that it’s versatile enough to use in so many ways plus like all Childs Farm products it is super gentle on delicate skin.

A bottle of Childs Farm 3 in 1 bodywash, shampoo and conditioner on a yellow bench with a towel, googles, costume and swim hat

Crayola Colour Wonder Mess Free Colouring

I bought one of these Colour Wonder packs for Big Sister a few years ago and it amused her for a bit, but I think she was too old to appreciate it really. Shortly before going away we saw a number of different ones in the supermarket and decided we should buy a pack for Little Sister given her recent talent of finding pens and drawing on the sofa (and anything else she can find). We bought the Peppa Pig pack which has 18 Colouring Pages and 5 pens. The pens look clear until you colour on the special paper and then they magically colour in the colour shown on the pen. Each page has black outlined pictures to be coloured in with the special pens, there are also hidden details which are revealed when coloured over. The packs are meant to be for age 3 plus and Little Sister has managed to remove (and break) one of the pen nibs, but she loves colouring the book in. Big Sister and a friend have both been allowed to join in too for a while and they have loved finding the hidden details. 

It’s nice that while we are away we haven’t had to worry about Little ruining the furniture, floor, windows etc. The pack warns that it does leave a residue and recommends you wipe it off surfaces if they have been accidentally used as a canvas, but I haven't seen this. The packs are expensive compared to a colouring book and felt tips, but absolutely worth it given the damage Little has managed so far with pencils, crayons and pens. It’s great to be able to direct her back to the colouring book. Plus she loves Peppa Pig.

A page in a colouring book with scribbling all over the page and a few pens


***Disclosure: I received products or services from Baylis & Harding, Drop It, Aldi, Ebookadabra and Childs Farm for the purpose of honest review. I was under no obligation to put them in this post. This post contains affiliate links to Amazon where relevant, if you click on these links and purchase the product it costs you no extra than if you went direct to Amazon, however I receive a small percentage of qualifying purchases, thank you if you choose to buy in this way.***
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8 comments

  1. That indoor studio seems handy.

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    1. It really is, I just need an even bigger one so I can take a picture of the smaller one!

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  2. Oh, what a gorgeous things! that indoor studio would be the dream hah!

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    1. It's really made things easier. Well worth it

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  3. The indoor photography setup looks really cool. I need to check out Aldi's suncream as I keep hearing things about it. Although looking outside today, will I even need it.

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    1. Ha ha, I had the little bottle in our changing bag and had to use some yesterday. I don't think I'll need any more for a few days though

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  4. Great round-up, I like the look of the portable studio 😀

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  5. I love this post! The drop it service sounds amazing and I need to get myself some havianas as they always look so much better than my primark ones! x

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