Happiness Is…

An ice-cold G&T right when you need it. AMIRIGHT!?

But also. There has been so much friggin’ happiness in my life as of late I just feel compelled to share it. Because I’ve got the joy joy joy joy down in my heart.


Down in my heart!



But srsly, it ain’t just Tate. It’s a whole lotta things.

It’s getting together with my cousins.

One of which, I haven’t gotten to see in like 2983 years!

And meeting my cousins precious baby Tony (Tate is his mentor).

It’s getting to see my sis Rachel and filtering the absolute bejesus out of our faces.

It’s getting a random bouquet of flowers from my Dad, the OG man in my life.

And E bein’ the best Girl Scout she can be! Juliette Gordon Low would be proud.

It’s my main squeeze Dah-vide who I get to marry in like a month. I am SO excited.

 And last, but certainly NOT least.

My Meira. The best doggy in the whole world.

Let me know what is making you happy these days. I’d love to know :).



The Ordinary Skincare Review

Hello lemon-heads!

Today is an exciting day. A VERY exciting day.

Today marks the official first day of my adventures in a new skin care line! (not spons’d. i wish)

Never in MY LIFE have I been a one-brand girl. In fact, those of you out there who always buy the same exact soap, cereal, laundry detergent, etc., I ask you – WHY!? There is just too much variety out there for me to want to stick to THE SAME stupid brand each time. I prefer to mix it up and get a little crazy. Except when it comes to dry shampoo because YOU KNOW the best brand for that, obvs.

But when I caught wind that there was a skincare brand boasting powerful concentrations of quality ingredients with price points as low as $6, I was SHOOKETH.

Give me a bargain  or give me death, I always say. And while you’re at it, make it work.

After I wrote about how I wrecked my skin just shy of a year ago, I had all kinds of folks giving me all kinds of advice. “Don’t try lasers!” they said. “Try this $200 set!”, they said. And I was intrigued. I DO want the spots to fade, the lines to disappear. But at what cost? In my book, $200 for a 90-day supply of product just isn’t worth it. I’d rather go to Paris, or buy us a nice dinner out or maybe the 6-foot Pusheen plush at Fuego. Doing a laser treatment is also not off my radar but I am pretty much going to need a 100% guarantee that it will work.

So in the meantime, I decided to give The Ordinary a shot. This brand is now available on Sephora.com but I placed my order on deciem.com.

Here are the products I purchased and the reasons I purchased them:

The Ordinary Granactive Retinoid 5% in Squalene.

  • Should help fade my sun spots
  • Also helps fine lines and signs of ageing

I went with the Retinoid versus Retinol because I read that they are stronger. I decided on the highest percentage because my sun spots are pretty intense.

The Ordinary 100% Plant Derived Squalene

  • Helps with hydration
  • Also great for my damaged hair

I decided on this product after reading multiple articles about how great it is. Plus, I like the word squalene :).

The Ordinary Hyaluronic Acid 2%

  • Amazing for hydration
  • Helps “plump” the skin

OF COURSE I got a hyaluronic acid. This ingredient is produced naturally but the production slows down over time. I have seen first-hand the amazing effects of hyaluronic acid and how glowy and plump it makes the skin appear.

The Ordinary Alpha Arbutin 2%

  • Also helps with hyperpigmentation and spots

I purchased this one because of the high concentration of the active ingredients at 2%. The standard is 1% and Mama needs all the help she can get.

The Ordinary Natural Moisturizing Factors + HA

  • Intense Hydrating  lotion

I wanted to try at least one product that was not an oil-based serum from the line and this lotion is regarded very highly. Also, you get 100 mls for less than $8!

Over the past few days of using these pups I can attest to their keen absorption into the skin, the wonderful absence of scent and the ease of the packaging.

And since I am so very excited to see how the results pan out, I am doing before and afters! So here is my BEFORE in all her eye goop and age spots, morning glory.

Let me know if YOU have tried any products from The Ordinary! I hear they make a nice foundation too :).

Wet’n’Wild Photofocus Foundation Review

Hello chocolate eggs!


Your homegirl is in desperate need of a new foundation which poses many-a-problem.

First, I am a terrible decision-maker and take 934892 hours to decide on really anything in life. This means that facing the counters at Sephora and Ulta and having to make a decision can be super triggering. I want something dewy, but not too dewy, great coverage but not heavy or cakey, long-wearing and doesn’t settle into fine lines. A tall order, I know.

My sister swears by drugstore foundations but I have never been a fan. I decided to do some due diligence on the topic and was inundated with information and conflicting views. So I decided to head to the store, see if anything was on sale and make a decision there.

I walked in to Rite Aid and faced the wall of infinite choices. L’Oreal Lumi? Maybelline Fit Me? Covergirl Bombshell? AAAAAH. My palms started to sweat as I rounded the corner to Wet’n’Wild and made the snap decision that yes, I, Natalie Kate, was going to try the Photofocus foundation.

Widely known in the beauty community as a dependable, photo-friendly foundation with good coverage and a $6 price point, this foundation is a favorite among many varying skin types. I was hesitant with my dry skin but since Wet’n’Wild was 30% off that day, I could roll the dice with $4.

I took another 238945 minutes selecting the right shade and ended up with Nude Ivory.

The next day I whipped ‘er out and smothered ‘er all over my mug. My thoughts are as follows:


Love the glass bottle and the amount you get (1 0z). The spatula-esque applicator was aight. Definitely liked it better than the treacherous pour-out style but would have probably preferred a pump instead.


The application was pretty easy. Not too hard to blend in and I found it easy to build up in certain areas.


The coverage is nice! Definitely not as luminous as I like (even with Mac Strobe Cream underneath) but not overly matte either. Upon initial application, the coverage and wear was pretty, as shown here. Also. CHECK OUT MY BUH-LINDING HIGHLIGHT.  It is Mary-Lou Manizer from The Balm! NO filters neither.

Where I started to get in trouble was when I checked my face in the mirror around 4 pm that day. This picture was taken at around 1 pm (in florescent lighting no less) to try and capture the severity of a very dry skin patch on my nose but you can see the foundation starting to break down and settle in around my mouth. Also, check out the little blemish on the corner of my mouth! Three cheers for realness!

Totally get that LOTS of foundations do not hold up super well for 8 hours, but this one looked especially gnarly. As  in, not-even-398434-sprays-of-Fix + would-have-fixed-this gnarly. The foundation had settled SO far in to my fine lines that they looked like the crevasses of Everest. Just baaaaaaad.

So I will definitely not be wearing this foundation to work everyday but for an afternoon tea and crumpets, it’ll do.

What do you y’all recommend I try??

Current Winter Skincare Routine

Hiya buddies!


The other night as I nestled myself cozily into bed, I realized something. I patted it my eye cream and thought, “Wow, I take awhile to get ready for bed.” What once took me minutes to accomplish now takes well over 15 minutes and why? #thirtysomethingproblems

The amount of steps involved in my current winter skincare routine rivals the cha-cha-cha. Here’s how it breaks down:

STEP ONE: Remove makeup

Lately I have been using the Earth Science Creamy Fruit Oil Cleanser to remove makeup and cleanse the skin. As a dry gal, I need a gentle product that cleans the skin but isn’t overly harsh. This stuff works great and is only about $10.


My all-time favorite facial spray is the Beauty Elixir from Caudalie, mostly because it smells like a bougie spa and makes my face tingle.

STEP THREE: Moisturize

For me, moisturizer comes in many different forms. On a typical night I have been using the Skin Laundry Restoring Night Serum, followed by the Boscia Deep Hydration Sleeping Mask. The serum has a bit of a funny smell but pairs nicely with the sleeping mask.

If I need an extra surge of moisture, I will throw a sheet mask on. I am not too picky about the sheet masks these days but I LOVE these ones from Karuna.

If I want a lighter moisturizer for my face, I will use the Origins Ginzing Energy-Boosting Gel Moisturizer. I LOVE this line from Origins.

On my eyes, I have been using the Juice Beauty Smoothing Eye Concentrate. I smear this stuff all the way around my eye and it feels amazing.

Sometimes, if I want a CRAZY amount of moisture under my eyes, I apply some Confetti Cake Lip Balm, from Treat Beauty. It is basically straight-up coconut oil.

For my lips, I like to exfoliate! This Elf Lip Exfoliator in Mint Maniac is just the ticket. I follow up with more of my beloved Treat Beauty lip balm.


In regards to body care, I use a couple of different products for added moisture before bed.

On my thighs, I apply the CeraVe Renewing SA Lotion which helps with KP (read a whole post on that here).

Everywhere else, I apply this Exfolicare Coconut Oil Creme that David’s aunt Sandi got me from Maui. IT IS AMAZING and if we go back, I am hunting it down and buying it by the barrel.

That is about it for my winter skincare routine. What do I need to try next?! Let me know in the comments below!

Valentines Day Gift Guide

Good morning strawberry zingers!

I’ve said it before and I will say it again, I LOVE VALENTINES DAY. Ok ok, it might have something to do with the color scheme and the fact that candy is err’where but who cares!? It’s the best. And because I’m a little bit extra, I LOVE to give cute Valentines gifts out this time of year. Because what’s better than getting a pink and red themed care package? NOTHING.

 For Gals

Daryl Dixon Shirt 

Etsy – $15

This item needs no explanation. If you do not watch The Walking Dead than I am sorry.

Love you More Pillow 

T.J Maxx – $20

I say this phrase to all my loved ones and it is always true. Everyone needs seasonal throw pillows amiright!? You could also keep this on your bed anytime of the year!

“Be Mine” Tee Shirt

H&M – $13

This little tee shirt makes me so happy. Notice the tiny heart detail on the bottom? The fit is actually very nice and at $12.99 – it’s a steal!

Candle in Honeysuckle

Bath & Body Works – $24 (USE A COUPON!)

My sister Megan turned me on to the gloriousness of honeysuckle scents from BBW. This one comes in an adorable V-Day themed jar that you can clean out and use for cotton balls when you are done!

Rose Jam Body Spray

Lush – $40

FINALLY Lush has answered my prayers. I have been tweeting the companies for years asking for this scent to become available in a perfume or body splash. IT IS HERE! Hopefully Davy is reading because…hint hint…I WANT THIS.

I will now work on tweeting Lush about a candle in this scent. Aw yiss.


52 Reasons I Love You Idea

Do I love cheesy, lovey-dovey gift ideas? IS THE POPE CATHOLIC?

I love making sh*t like this for people I adore. Click the link about for a step-by-step HOW TO on how to make this!

Angels Envy Whiskey 


This bottle-o-booze is representative of any alcohol or food item that your guy or gal loves. It’s nice to step it up a notch on V-Day and spend a little more on something bougie. Dahvide LURVES this whiskey.

Replica At the Barber’s Cologne

Maison Margiela – $130

I just recently smelt this sucker at Sephora and lemme tell ya – I almost bought it for myself. It smells like a clean, sexy man. Who doesn’t like that?


Crosley Pink Turntable Record Player

Amazon – $64

David got me this exact record player for Hanukkah last year along with 3 of my favorite albums. I CRIED. It was the most thoughtful and romantic gift ever. We slow danced in the living room. I love owning a record player again and this one comes in SO many colors!

Origins Love Oil

Good Clean Love – $22

Guys, you can put this stuff errwhere. Catch my drift? On occasion, I do make David rub my shoulders and go to town on this hump on my back I’ve had FOREVER. I used to think massage oils were just not necessary until we tried this stuff. It smells amazing and makes the massage feel about 92784 times better. This brand (more on them later) also uses aphrodisiacs in several of their products and like HELLO, yes! Please be more attracted to me! I love that and seriously feel that they work.

Myths & Legends Organic Aphrodisiac Perfume 

Good Clean Love – $30 each

These two fragrances are not for dilly-dallying.

Legends is the more “masculine” scent, with notes East Indian Sandalwood, Omani Frankincense, and Bulgarian Rose. The scent does NOT mess around guys. And either you love this or hate it. I tend to like heavier scents, myself.

Myths is the more “feminine” scent. I really enjoyed how this scent paired with Legends.

I think any couple would get a kick out of trying this set of two fragrances.  It would be fun to try wearing them out together on a date night! Plus, the small size means you’re not making a huge investment on a giant bottle. Win!

*I was sent the Good Clean Love products complimentary for testing. All opinions are my own.

Bath & Body Works Haul

Hello little dingo babies!

I don’t know about you, but I feel there are few greater things than a good sale. You see, I was raised in a household where we never even looked at regular priced items. The front of any store was basically off limits except for Goodwill. In adulthood I have realized that some things must be purchased at the regular price, but most things are attainable for less. Enter: BBW. One of my all-time favorites. Candles, triple-moisture body cream, wallflowers? I love them all. And a few times a year, they mark down all their sh*t. It is a lovely time of year known as the semi-annual sale.

The semi-annnual sale or SAS to any BBW aficionado is a great time indeed. We all race in, dig through giant bins of $3 hand soap, lotion and shower gel! Everything is coated in a thin layer of something that leaked at the bottom of the barrel but WE DON’T CARE. Give us that last, pumpkin cupcake room spray or GIVE US DEATH.

I digress.

Last year, my lovely betrothed gave me a $25 gift card to BBW for Christmas thinking I’d probably come home with a couple of candles, maybe a new fragrance set. HA. Little did he know just how far I can stretch a dollar at the SAS. FEAST YER EYES on this smorgesbord you guys. ALL purchased for just 30 bucks.


I attribute a haul of this size and magnitude to sticking almost soley to items 75% off.

This made the wallflowers I bought just about $1.60 each. Aw yiss. In addition to the lovely spring scents below, I also got Marshmallow Fireside which is currently plugged in!

They also had wallflower plugs on sale for 75% off!

These came out to about $3 each and the bronzy one is also a nightlight!

Next – hand soaps. And BBW’s are the best. They smell good, they clean your hands and I also use them to clean my beauty sponges. I got a couple for the end of the year and a couple to enjoy now.

The fall/winter scents were 75% off, coming out to only $1.60 per bottle and the other two were $3 apiece.

I also found this cute honey handsoap which I’ll probably save for winter as well. It was in the $2 range :).

Next they had a wall of random small, one-wick candles for 75% off as well. They ended up coming out to being just a couple of dollars. Some of them were a little bit mucked up but I found three that smell amazing! Beach Cabana is one of my all-time favorite scents from BBW, I would have bought all them if they had more.

I also grabbed one of their wax melts to try in my Yankee warmer. This cost just cents.

I did walk out with a couple body care items for 75% off as well. I knew I was getting the marshmallow body wash because HELLO and when I saw this ROSE scented mousse-to-oil I was like aw yiss.

Using my $25 gift card meant that I left BBW only paying $5 out of pocket. Not bad for a lunchbreak’s work.

And check out the  length of this receipt!



Cut Crease Glitter & Red Lips

Hi peanuts!

The aforementioned title of this blog post represents two looks I’ve always been wary of. But before I get to that, let me begin with a short story.

My Mom The Nan does not wear eyeliner. She never has. When I was younger and I asked her about this she told me, “It just doesn’t look good on me.” After a few more times pestering her about it she finally explained herself.  In her Home Ec class in the late 60’s, her teacher brought in a makeup consultant for a lesson. *Pause to consider how funny and horribly Stepford Wivesy this is.* The makeup lady did my mother’s makeup and declared that eyeliner just “did not suit her”. And as a result, she has NEVER worn it since.


i share this story because like my dear mother, so many of us have closed ourselves off to certain things (makeup, clothing items, ideals) because of one small comment or incident from our past. Someone once told us we looked sallow in turquoise or that those sunglasses were too big for our face and we believed them. I mean…don’t  get me wrong. A well-received piece of advice can be absolutely essential to saving a person from committing the worst crimes of fashion (ex: my mom not letting me buy Jnco jeans) but come on. We’ve got to push ourselves sometimes don’t we?

Enter: cut crease glitter eye shadow and a red lip.

It should first be pointed out that until the fairly recent popularity of items like glitter glue and Stila’s Magnificent Metals Glitter – this look would have never even been attempted.

You see, the complexity of this look lies within the precision of the application. First your cut crease must be well placed and blended adequately. Secondly, the glitter must hug the edge of that cut crease and the liquid liner without spreading all over the place. It’s a tricky look indeed.

I mustered up the courage to try this for an auction David and I attended with his Grandma at the synagogue. Took me a solid 30 minutes for JUST the eyes, but I am glad I embraced the challenge! What do you think?

Sorry about the sub-par photos, it was dark and I suck.

It was a sports theme!

NOW, onto red lips.

Red lips are tough for me and here is why. First, the maintenance. If I wear a red lip, I have to accept the fact that I will be checking my face all night to make sure I don’t look like Miranda Sings. Double the amount of checks if food and beverages are involved and LAWD help me if I cannot drink out of a straw.

Also, there is the delicate song and dance of selecting the proper shade. For me, too dark and my skin looks even more ghastly white than it is and too bright/warm and my teeth are yellow. A red-coral that leans on the cool side usually works best for me, but then there’s the issue of getting it to stay.

And before you ask, YES. I know ALL of the tricks to getting an ordinary lipstick to stay put. (Comment below if you’d like a post on that!). So why not get a red liquid lipstick you ask? Well, I don’t wear the color enough to necessitate a prestige brand and a dry, drugstore brand would just make my small, wrinkled lips look horrible.

Enter, this product:

Let it be noted that I DO NOT recommend this product to everyone.

The Covergirl Outlast lip products are a friggen’ doozy man. I have a few shades and hear is what to do: First, apply the “all-day colorcoat” and wait for that to dry, Read: THEE most uncomfortable product you’ll ever apply to your lips. Once it is dry, follow up with the moisturizing topcoat. I actually really love the topcoat product and use it over lots of other lip colors. The topcoat makes the horrible colorcoat wearable and best of all, SHINY! Which is what us older gals need to fill in those lines.

I wore this to the Gonzaga basketball game last week and loved it. The only thing to be careful of is to not apply too many layers of the topcoat because it will break the colorcoat down eventually.

That second pic is me next to Adam Morrison who is sporting a righteous man bun.

SO, in conclusion…I am glad I pushed my boundaries in these makeup choices. They ended up panning out for me, which is rare! Up next, BANGS.

…just kidding….