October Empties – hair, skin, body products

Monday, November 7th 2016 Makeup


Another month, another round of empties. I’ve been making a concerted effort to finish products, especially some of my many sample sachets that I’ve been hoarding for years. 13 different products isn’t a bad effort in my book. They were mostly skin and body care products, with a few haircare products, and one makeup item rounding out the group. The brands featured include Paula’s Choice, Neutrogena, Maybelline, Lush, and Vaseline. Let’s crack into it!

What’s in my shower? Body, skin, and hair products galore

Friday, October 14th 2016 Body

Tresemme Botanique, Sebastian Hydre, Fudge Violet Shampoo, Cetaphil, Trilogy exfoliant, Giovanni body scrub

As a beauty blogger, I am lucky enough to be sent a massive amount of beauty products to try and review. What that means in reality, is that my bedroom and bathroom is overflowing with products. Recently on Instagram I posted a picture of everything that is in my shower at the moment. People were shocked/impressed with the sheer quantity of products. Then my mum added ‘what’s in my shower’ to my blog post ideas list on my whiteboard so I knew I just had to write about them all.

In this post I’m going to run through all of the products I’m using at the moment, and what I like about them. It’s heavy on the hair products, but also includes skincare and body products  – a bit of something for everyone.

November Empties

Monday, December 21st 2015 Makeup

MAC foundation, clinique sample, marc jacobs dot - lena talks beauty.31

I know, it’s the middle of December and I’m writing about the beauty products that I used up in November. Better late than never, right? I finished up quite a few different products – hair care, skincare, makeup, and body. That was a mixture of full sized, and samples, and overall I’m feeling quite accomplished. By the way, when I say ‘repurchase’, some of them I didn’t actually purchase but got sent from brands, or got samples at counter but my evaluation remains the same – would I spend my money on them in the future. Right, now let’s get on with the reviews!

November empties - Tresemme, neutrogena, mac, clinique and giovanni

MUA for a day – Collaboration with Caitlin

Tuesday, August 5th 2014 Makeup

Today is a bit of an unusual post because it’s not featuring my face – instead it’s my friend Caitlin! She has a fashion and beauty blog, and we decided to do each other’s makeup and post the results on our respective blogs. It was pretty fun, I never do anyone else’s makeup so it was a bit strange doing it and trying to be gentle, while still making them look fabulous. It was also cool looking through her makeup which was a bunch of things I’ve never used before, especially all the different Benefit products.

Here she is before any makeup – looking gorgeous as always.



The first product I put on her was MAC Prep and Prime Skin, which made for a nice smooth base. Then I used the Maybelline Fit Me foundation stick in the shade 120, and kind of drew some lines on her face then blended them with a foundation brush. I’ve never used a stick foundation before so I needed instructions “If you read my blog you’d know this!” she said. I do read her blog but I have to say I don’t memorise it. Sorry Caity. There were just a couple of blemishes that needed extra coverage so I used her Maybelline Mineral Power Natural Perfecting concealer on top of them.

Next came an exciting product which was Benefit High Beam highlighter which I applied on her cheekbones and blended with my finger, and it gave a really lovely glow to her skin. Then I set everything with Revlon Colorstay Aqua mineral makeup which apparently has coconut water in it – coconut everything seems to be so hot right now! I moved to brows next, using Benefit Gimmebrow which was in a mascara-type tube – another novelty product for me and I think it did a great job at lightly filling in her brows.

The products used

The products used

For her eyes I used a couple of colours from her eyeshadow quad which is from Kmart’s Face Eyes Lips Nails range, over my Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer potion because it’s too great to not use. It was more weird working on someone’s eyes than on their face, I thought. I used her Collection Cosmetics EXTREME eyeliner which is a felt tip which was really easy to use – I actually did a relatively smooth line for once which can be a bit of a rarity when I use the brush style on my own! I finished off her eye makeup with Benefit Bad Gal lash which was a good mascara, but it was so hard to put it on her! I swear I made so many smudges which was not an amazing look.

There were so many options for lipstick but I chose MAC Chatterbox which was an amplified shade that was just so pretty and looked good for her black outfit. Applying lipstick was a bit weird and smudgy too. I think we both decided we shouldn’t quit our day jobs to become makeup artists after this experiment but it was a good laugh!

Now, here’s the finished product:


She looked great in the before but even more babealicious in the after!



Now you can head on over to Caitlin’s blog –  My Flatmate’s Wardrobe to see what wonders she worked on me!

Lena x

My Kmart face!

Monday, August 4th 2014 Makeup

I am in love with Kmart, I find it impossible to not go there when I go to the mall, and every time I do I seem to end up buying something. This happened the other day, when I went in to buy a tshirt and came out with a tshirt, leggings and also some makeup.

Couldn't resist buying some makeup at Kmart today! BYS lip tar, ELF concealer/highligher and an Eyes eyeliner. They'll all be on the blog before long! #BYS #liptar #ELF #EyesLipsFace #makeup #muo #bbloggers

A post shared by Lena (@lenatalks) on

Last week I saw Morgan from Hyacinth Girl post her $20 makeup challenge, using Kmart products, and I was inspired. I wanted to try on all of my new products, and I combined this with a bit of a challenge – do an entire face of makeup using only products that can be bought at Kmart. Some of them I actually bought elsewhere but they can be bought at Kmart, so let’s not be nit picky!

I started with Maybelline Dream Pure BB cream in the shade light, which has pretty decent coverage, and just put it all over my face with my fingers. Next up was one of my new purchases, ELF Studio Under Eye Concealer & Highlighter. I put the concealer, which was in the shade light under my eyes, and blended it with a brush, and then repeated with the highlighter, to brighten the darkness under my eyes. It said that the highlighter can be used as an eyeshadow primer, so I put it on my lids too. It did give a nice lightness to the areas, but wasn’t overwhelmingly shimmery. I set it all with Rimmel Stay Matte powder in transparent, which is my usual powder of choice.

ELF Studio concealer and undereye highlighter swatch

Swatches of the ELF concealer and highlighter compared to my usual concealer

Once my base was done I used my ELF brow kit, in light, to fill in my brows before putting Maybelline Color Tattoo in Bad to the Bronze all over my lids. Then it was eyeliner time – I bought this brown eyeliner pencil from Kmart’s Face Eyes Lips Nails range to keep in my emergency makeup kit at work, so I was pleased it was so cheap. It wasn’t as smooth as I usually like to use, but for $5, and considering I won’t use it too much it’s okay. I didn’t take a photo since it wasn’t that interesting to look at, but it was a nice and subtle look. For mascara I used my favourite Maybelline The Falsies Big Eyes.

Then came the item I was most excited about – BYS Lip Tar 02 Party in Ibiza, which cost about $7 (I threw away the receipt like an idiot). My friend Jay wore one of these once and I was so impressed with its staying power over lunch that I vowed to buy one, and so I did. I love the bright pink colour and it lasted really well through a meal that usually would remove all trace of colour. It was a bit fussy to apply, as it comes with a tiny brush to use, but I think with practice it’d get easier.

BYS Lip Tar 02 Party in Ibiza swatch

So bright!

And here’s how it looked all together!

Kmart makeup face BYS lip tarI think a lot of people write off Kmart and other cheaper stores as having poor quality makeup but a lot of the time there are a lot of great products there – as my beautiful pictures should show you (haha sorry for being obnoxious). Considering how outrageously expensive cosmetics are in NZ, it’s a good idea to not let snobbish-ness about brands mean you overlook some real gems. I use a mixture of cheaper and more expensive brands most days, and I think just because something is cheap doesn’t mean it’s bad, and vice versa – more expensive brands can definitely have some fails.

Are there any Kmart makeup products you can recommend?
I’m always on the lookout for new things to buy on my frequent visits!

Lena x

Kmart brand lipstick – say whaaaaat?

Tuesday, June 3rd 2014 Makeup

You heard me – Kmart has its own brand of lip products! If you’ve been to Kmart in NZ or Australia since they did their cosmetics refurbish earlier this year you will have seen a section call ‘Face Eyes Lips Nails’ – not to be confused with the brand ELF (Eyes Lips Face). I’d walked past it before, but never bought anything as I figured it would be poor quality. However, this past weekend I was at my local Kmart with Elese, and an orange lipstick caught my eye, and as it only cost $6 I thought why not give it a whirl.

Lips brand Orange Matte Lipstick from Kmart

Lips Colour Deluxe Semi Matte Lipstick – Shade 022

Kmart Lips Semi-Matte Deluxe Lipstick 022

The tube is nice and solid, the cap didn’t come off in my handbag.

Wrist swatch Kmart Lips Semi-Matte Deluxe Lipstick 022

Here’s a wrist swatch of it, to show how it looks without my lip colour interfering

Here’s my FOTD (Face Of The Day) for afternoon tea with a friend on the weekend. I’m wearing MAC Pro Longwear concealer, Maybelline Dream Pure BB cream, Models Prefer mineral foundation, Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion, Silk Naturals loose eyeshadow which I’m planning on posting about soon, Bobbi Brown gel eyeliner in Espresso Ink, Smashbox Mascara and Bobbi Brown eyeshadow in my brows. Phew that sounds like a lot of products but it’s just for a fairly casual outing!

Kmart Lips Semi-Matte Deluxe Lipstick 022 on lips

Pretty basic make up look – I wanted to focus on the lips

And a close up of my lips, to show the lipstick better. My lips are a bit dry here, from wiping off a previous choice that I regretted – don’t blame this lipstick for it!

Kmart Lips Semi-Matte Deluxe Lipstick 022 on lips


I wore the lipstick out for a coffee date, and it faded a bit after my coffee and muffin, but after 4 hours it still looked decent which is a great in my books. If you have a nearby Kmart, and want a nice matte lipstick at a low cost – I recommend getting these. I’m certainly going to be going back and purchasing a few more of their offerings. There aren’t any testers but for $6 I’m willing to run the risk.

Have you tried anything from Kmart’s Face, Eyes, Lips, Nails range? Is there anything you suggest that I try or that I should steer clear of? Let me know in the comments section.

Lena x




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