My top 5 most-used iPhone apps…

Posted by Lipglossiping On April - 15 - 2012

…for no other reason than I’d like to be able to throw this question back to you guys; today I’m going to share my top 5 most-used apps.  Non-iPhone users, look away now.

It’s true that I’m addicted to my iPhone and it’s for one reason, and one reason only: apps.  The range and breadth of utilities, timewasters and memory-makers is unparalleled and I’ve gone from someone who never even turned her phone ON, to someone who gets itchy fingers if I can’t plug it in beside my bed.

I’ve been using Boxcar for a few weeks and it’s become my all-in-one solution to keep me updated on my social networks, emails, and RSS feeds.  It sends me push notifications whenever I get a new email, tweet or facebook message.

It even lets me know when someone comments on the blog or if the blog experiences any downtime.  I have been able to turn off push notifications for all my other apps and consolidate everything into one, saving constant updates (from different apps) and resources.  It even lets me set a ‘quiet time’ to ensure that I don’t receive any notifications when I’m sleeping!  Love it. (£free but with an optional purchase to remove ads)

 

It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of eBay and I use it to uncover all sorts of bargains.  My favourite things to buy on the site are bargainous nail polishes from the U.S. (OPI, China Glaze and Zoya mostly), the ‘drugstore’ type products that we just don’t get easily over here (Wet n’ Wild, NYX etc), and pretty beauty-related things from Asia.  With the app, I’m able to receive notifications when an auction I’m watching is about to end, I can bid directly from my phone and even complete the sale via Paypal.  It makes my shopping habit mobile.  A wonderful thing! (£free)

 

 

Where would I be without Twitter?  A lot more productive I’m sure!  There hasn’t been an app to date that has fulfilled everything I want but Tweetbot is as close as I’ve gotten to twitter/iphone harmony in a long time.  It feels polished, streamlined and has an easy-to-use interface which is both intuitive and visually attractive.  It has features that blow some of the other Twitter apps out of the water with the ability to “mute” users and filters (cough) and also provides full conversation threading. (£1.99)

 

 

I have a bunch of photography applications on the iPhone (instagram, snapseed, picframe to name but a few) but none is more important than the app I use to take the picture right?  Camera+ builds on the functionality of the iPhone’s native camera app and returns increased usability with features such as the ability to set different area for exposure determination than focus.  You can also use the apps built in self-timer, burst modes (great for shooting fast-moving action), and best of all?  It loads up faster than anything else I’ve tried.  (£0.69 on sale)

 

I work better when I’m up against the clock!  I’m a dreadful procrastinator with a penchant for easy distraction and Timer+ forces me to concentrate my efforts into little bursts of productivity.  It lets me visualise light at the end of the tunnel and breaks chores down into more managable chunks.  I simply set the timer, assign it a task and away I go.  I know that the iPhone has a built-in timer but this allows me to preset various timers for a number of tasks, allowing for minimal faffing about when it’s time to get some work done.  30 minutes housework? 3-2-1…. go! (£free)

 

I can’t believe I haven’t even touched upon any of the games, travel or photo-editing apps on my home screen!  Alas, I strictly limited myself to five and for once, I will show some restraint!

What are your most-used apps on your phone right now?


Clinique’s new iPhone app…

Posted by Lipglossiping On November - 27 - 2010

… is titled “3 things to do before you’re 30“.

At the age of 29, that resonates.  Tick, tock, tick, tock… boom.  Why have I gotta do things before I’m 30?  Surely I’ve got time to do it AFTER I’m 30… *small voice* haven’t I?

Mannnn… Clinique, you just made me feel old.  But it’s free… so, I downloaded it anyway.

When you load it up, it’s caaaa-ute!  Lots of little squares that invite you to give it a shake… so I did!

Wheeee, they all fly around the screen… it’s very satisfying.  Then they settle… and give you a list of 3 things to do before you’re 30.

The first one I got told me to learn the trapeze.

So I turned it off and uninstalled it.  Stupid app.

C25K

Posted by Lipglossiping On October - 13 - 2010

No, I haven’t started blogging in Algebra, C25K stands for “Couch to 5k”, a running program that has been devised to get anyone up and running 5k in roughly 9 weeks.  Yes, really.

Being English, I didn’t actually know what 5k was off the top of my head.  I’m all about the inches, feet and miles.  I guessed at 2 miles, so was shocked when I looked at a converter and saw that 5k = 3.1 miles!

Me? Run? 3 miles?

In 9 weeks?  Not a bloody chance.

But you know what they say about God loving a tryer…

The program consists of 3 runs a week, each getting progressively longer and more challenging.

Last night, I attempted my first run.  I literally mean, “my first run”.  I honestly can’t remember the last time I broke the “fast walking” barrier.  I mean, why would I?  I never have to run for a bus and I’m well past chasing men!

I wasn’t even sure if I’d be able to co-ordinate my flailing limbs into a running motion anymore.  What if I fell over?  What if I knocked myself out with my boobs?

First things first, the boobs had to go.  I bought a sports bra online a few days ago and it arrived this morning.  It doesn’t kill the motion completely, but it absorbs the shock enough for it not to be a problem to my back or my chin!  It also happens to be the most comfortable and uplifting bra I’ve ever worn (though alas, far from the prettiest).  I’m buying another in white to trial wearing daily (I’m a sad old sports bra-wearing mum nowadays).

Anyway, enough talk of bras… back to the running!

The first week’s schedule consists of interval training which involves a 5 minute warm up/cool down and alternating between 60 seconds jogging and 90 seconds walking.  Repeat this until you DIE or for 20 minutes, whichever comes sooner.  In my case, it was very nearly sweet, sweet death.

It’s cold out there now in the evenings and heaven forbid I’m only going to attempt this kind of body wobbling under the cover of darkness.  Cold air = burny lungs and that was my first obstacle.  I’m a chronic asthmatic which although well-controlled, still requires daily inhalers and the whole burny lung thing was not comfortable.  Next time, I’m wrapping a light scarf round my gob – I don’t care if it looks stupid.

Second obstacle?  The snots.  My nose would. not. stop. dripping.  Again, the cold air… I’m thinking that at least the scarf will double as a nose wiper.

Third obstacle?  None really!

Of course, I was knackered after about 10 minutes of walking/running – but I didn’t get any stitches, painful calves or shin splints so I think I got off quite lightly really.  Those last 3 minutes did nearly put me in an early grave though… my head felt like it was going to explode every time I pounded the pavement (did you feel the quaking from where you are?).  I think that was because I was a touch dehydrated, I should have had been sipping fluids regularly for a couple of hours before starting the programme (especially being on the CWP).  Something I’m going to remedy from now on.

Once I got home and collapsed in my chair, my pulse stayed elevated above 100 bpm for a good 15-20 minutes… a sure sign that this chick needs to get back out there and improve on her fitness.

I downloaded the C25K iPhone app (there are also podcasts and an android version available) to help me with this endeavour and the app vocally guides you through the timings of when to run and when to walk.  The countdown is particularly motivational for those last 20 seconds of each running segment!

Have you ever tried the C25K programme?  If you fancy giving it a go with me, I could sure do with the virtual company!  Week 1, Day 1 complete… I’m eager commited resigned to the next installment!

iPerfumer – The iPhone Perfume App Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On July - 8 - 2010

Givaudan, the worlds most respected fragrance manufacturer has released an iPhone App unimaginatively titled: iPerfumer.  It’s for the iPhone?  Better stick a small “i” in at the beginning of the name then *yawn*.

Having said that, I had barely finished scrolling to the bottom of the press release before I’d scooped up my iPhone and zoned in on the App Store.  Combine my iPhone geekery with an undying fascination for the perfume world and it was downloaded and installed faster than a fat kid at a cake buffet.

Now, despite my fascination in perfumes and scents… I’m a total n00b.  I’m clueless, which is great… ‘cos I’m guessing this App is aimed at people like me who struggle to navigate the complicated world of perfumes.

The App itself is pretty basic, you fire it up… enter some personal details and preferences (I had to look up some of the fragrance types – chypre? fougere? wassat!) and finally start ‘rating’ fragrances that you’ve tried, with 5 stars being top marks.

The first thing I noticed was that once I’d entered my personal preferences, there doesn’t seem to be a way to ‘go back’ and edit them.  I’m stuck with having given ‘Oriental’ 3 stars, when I should have given it more.  Make sense?  The only way I can see to fix this is to delete my profile and start from scratch.  Frankly, I can’t be arsed.

It also appears to have a limited database of perfumes… I’m hoping that as time passes, the clever people at Givaudan will update the App to include more and more fragrances.  I couldn’t rate anything by Annick Goutal… still, it let me score SJP Covet (go figure!)  – and no, I’m not telling you what score I gave Covet, you’ll ban me from ever owning another perfume!

Once you’ve rated as many perfumes as you can remember owning or sniffing… click the “Recommend” button at the bottom and the App takes just seconds to whizz up a list of recommendations based on your previous input and ratings.  Clever no?

I’d have loved to have been able to browse through the perfumes in the App’s database… it seems that you can only really access a fragrance’s details if you know the name to search for it directly or get recommended it by the App.  Seeing as I like ‘floral’ perfumes, it would have been nice to have been able to browse through a category devoted to these scents.  It’s all about making the database accessible in as many ways as possible to the user.

I’ll be honest… I don’t know enough about fragrances to tell you whether the recommendations are much cop.  I had a nice selection of floral/oriental fragrances in my list (the image above is a generic screenshot) including Armani Sensi, Ralph Lauren Notorious, Trish McEvoy Gardenia Musk and Serge Lutens Daim Blond.  But having never smelt any of those, I’ll have to follow my nose to my local counters to see what I think.

Overall, iPerfumer is a nifty little App that occupied a good half hour of my time yesterday.  I had fun rating and reading little snippets of info about fragrances I’d never heard of before.  Ultimately, it needs a bit of work and a lot of updating.  But the potential is certainly there, and if anyone can do it… it’s Givaudan.

I’ll be back to let you know what I think of it’s recommendations… if I like the suggestions, then this App will be coming with me on many a Beauty Hall tour!

Thumbs up!  Oh, and did I mention it’s free?  Double thumbs up! (I look like an idiot!)

Oh good grief…

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 18 - 2010

…Introducing, AcneApp:

Everyone recognises Apple’s iPhone tag line “There’s an app for that!”, but check out Dr. Greg Pearson’s novel use of the latest in mobile technology.

AcneApp has been developed as a potential mini-alternative to professional light treatment.  It uses 420 nanometer blue light to fight bacteria and 550 nanometer red light, which is said to help kill bacteria and promote collagen growth.

In theory, you could be zapping your zits whilst catching up on the bestie’s latest boyfriend drama.  Or perhaps not, seeing as it’s yet to be clinically tested.  Still, it’s a great way to up your dose of cell phone radiation in the quest for perfect skin.

Cosmetifique – The Review

Posted by Lipglossiping On February - 15 - 2010

So, I downloaded the Cosmetifique app for the iPhone about a month ago and am back to share my thoughts on it.

Firstly, it looks and feels kinda clunky.  It takes a large amount of effort to manually enter all the ingredients from a product ingredient list into the app and out of the 7 different products I tried, Cosmetifique’s database was missing at least 2 ingredients from each product, so after all that effort, I didn’t feel like I was getting the full picture anyway.

I was actually expecting to be able to simply enter the name and brand of the cosmetic item and watch as the app downloaded all the relevant INCI (International Nomenclature of Cosmetic Ingredients) info from it’s own database.  I didn’t realise I had to manually enter each ingredient into the app myself.  What a palaver!

The app is designed to be used whilst shopping, so that you can input ingredients into the program and in a matter of seconds discover the quality of the INCI rating.  This sounds promising, but the app uses a hugely simplified traffic light system to rate the quality of the ingredients where RED = BAD, GREEN = GOOD and YELLOW & AMBER = somewhere inbetween the two.

This over simplification doesn’t appeal to me, I want to know *why* Limonene is a YELLOW, even just a small paragraph would do.  I also compared the results from Cosmetifique to Cosmetics Database and got conflicting results on some ingredients, which confused me further.

Let me give you a working example using my Revlon Colorstay Foundation:

There you go. Any wiser? No, me neither. Apparently my foundation is a bit bad and it’s a bit good… even Cosmetifique describe it as:

Quality of Ingredients: So so… be careful.

So So? That’s useful, thanks.  What am I being careful of? Skin Irritation? Tentative links to cancer? Not blending my jawline adequately?

I just don’t really ‘get’ anything from this app and the sketchy knowledge it provides me, it doesn’t give me enough information to make any informed choices and the lmited information that it does display on my screen is often incomplete anyway. What’s the point.

I give Cosmetifique a big fat

Cosmetifique – the iPhone app that analyses your cosmetics

Posted by Lipglossiping On January - 17 - 2010

Cosmetifique is a newly launched iPhone app that promises to analyse the ‘quality’ of your cosmetics.  You enter the ingredients one by one and you can get an overall view of the “toxicity” of your makeup.

So, is knowledge power?  Or a little (mis)information a dangerous thing?

I’ve downloaded it and will play for a few days before sharing my thoughts.  Do you think much about the ingredients of the cosmetics you wear daily?  Do you know your Methicones from your Sorbitan Sesquioleates?

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