June 29, 2010

My Etsy Wish List

If you are looking for a unique and handmade treasure, I highly recommend you head over to Etsy.com.  I have been a fan of Etsy for years, and am pleased to see the recent influx of YouTubers and Bloggers promoting the website.  Having grown up surrounded by entrepreneurs, I am all about supporting home based businesses.

After a recent "online window shopping excursion", I found three stores of interest that I thought I would share with you.  I have yet to purchase from any of them, but based on all of the positive feedback I skimmed through, I definitely will be in the future.

Original Tableaux by Nateara Barabas

When my adorable husband and I were in our late teens, we proudly displayed a matted and framed picture of cigar-smoking dogs playing poker in our home.  (Yes, folks...  We felt this "masterpiece" was worthy of not only a frame, but a mat as well.  Ha!)  We thought it was hilarious, thus making us hilarious for owning it.  Fortunately, our taste in decor has since evolved into something a little less...  caninepokeresque.

Although I appreciate all kinds of art, my eyes are always drawn to abstract pieces like the ones created by Russian artist, Nateara Barabas.  These amazing canvases give off a modern, urban vibe that would fit nicely into our home.  The flowers are feminine, but the deep, rich colors anchor the pieces, making them appealing to both men and women.  My husband and I absolutely love them!

[photo credit: http://www.etsy.com/shop/nataera]

[photo credit: http://www.etsy.com/shop/nataera]

Check out more of the extremely talented Nateara's work here.

The Ivory Magnolia by Dedra Harvin

Having satiny smooth and deliciously scented skin is of utmost importance to me.  Products, such as the ones sold at Dedra Harvin's Etsy shop, make my heart flutter.  Candied Blueberries, Pink Cotton Candy, and Blue Coconut Cream are just a few of her delightful scents.

When I wrote to Dedra (a.k.a. Dee), requesting permission to use her photographs for this post, she responded immediately.  Her warmth and kindness could be felt through her words, which is such a rarity these days.  Creamy, whipped, and looking downright edible, Dee's sweetly fragranced confections are a hit with her customers.  It's no wonder she has 100% positive feedback!

[photo credit: http://www.etsy.com/shop/theivorymagnolia]

This month, all of The Ivory Magnolia's watermelon scented goodies are 15% off.  How cute is her watermelon soap?

Click here to shop!

NYLightMetals by Regina Pierallini

"If a man who cannot count finds a four-leaf clover, is he lucky?" - S. Lec

As some of you know, my hubby and family are Irish, so I feel a special connection to Ireland and its people.  For the past year, I have been on the hunt for clover shaped jewelry.  There is something so elegant and timeless about the four leaf design.  Unfortunately, the collections I have been swooning over cost more than I currently have in my piggy bank.  You can imagine my delight when I discovered Regina Pierallini's wallet friendly necklaces.

These are some of my must-have pieces for the Summer:

[photo credit: http://www.etsy.com/shop/NYLightMetals]

How great would these necklaces go with a cute summer dress?

Regina's store offers something for nearly everyone: pretty vintage baubles, sparkling jewels fit for a bride, cheerful candy-colored adornments, and more.  If she doesn't have exactly what you're looking for, do not hesitate to send her a message as she may be able to create a custom piece for you.

[photo credit: http://www.reginapierallini.com/]

Check out Regina's Etsy store here, her website here, and be sure to tell her I said hello!  She is a complete doll!

Now if only I could find someone to make me a grill...  I need to have my people to call L'il Wayne's people.  Ha!

Have a great day, everyone!


Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene

P. S.  Don't forget to enter my International $180.00 SkinCareRx Microderm Giveaway!

June 24, 2010

SkinCareRx International $180.00 Personal Microderm Giveaway! [CLOSED]

Those of you who have been following my blog for awhile know that skin care is my number one beauty priority.  Call me crazy, but I have no desire to wake up one day looking like the Asian Crypt Keeper.  (Sexy, he is not.  I'm not hatin', I'm just statin'.  Ha ha ha!)  To keep my complexion bright and healthy, I cleanse, tone, moisturize, slather on products containing SPF, and drink at least 100 ounces of H20 daily.  I also exfoliate a couple times a week utilizing masks and scrubs.

Microdermabrasion is a cosmetic procedure that is offered at day spas, medical spas, and dermatology offices.  Dead skin cells are gently buffed away with an abrasion tool and aluminum oxide crystals, leaving your skin supple, vibrant, and smooth.  It is a safe and effective way to rid of or reduce dark spots, sun damage, minor scars, and fine lines.

 [photo credit: www.thenewyoumedspa.com]

When I worked at the corporate headquarters of an upscale salon and spa chain, I got to see firsthand the benefits of mircodermabrasion.  Personally, I prefer this method of exfoliating over my current regimen as it produces results that are difficult to achieve on your own.  Unfortunately, treatment is impractical for the budget conscious; an hour long facial costs $130.00.  Luckily, there are options for those of us pinching pennies.

SkincareRx.com is generously offering to give one of my readers a Personal Microderm Set by Age Sciences - an at home microdermabrasion system.  The great thing is, this hand held tool can be used on the face and body, and is simple to use.  Exfoliating is pertinent to maintaining healthy skin; this set will do most of the work for you!

[photo credit: www.skincarerx.com]
Retail Value: $180.00

♥ How to Enter ♥  

You have FIFTEEN entry possibilities!

1.  Become a fan of SkinCareRx on Facebook.  (One entry.)
2.  Retweet SkinCareRx's tweet about this giveaway.  www.twitter.com/skincarerx1  (One entry.)
3.  Leave me a comment about one of SkinCareRx.com's products below.  (Two entries.)
4.  Sign up to receive SkinCareRx's Newsletter, which can be done on the bottom of SkinCareRx.com's website.  Make sure you save SkinCareRx as a contact in your e-mail to ensure their e-mails aren't accidentally routed to your spam folder.  This is especially crucial for the winner of this giveaway. (Two entries.)
5.  Write a post on your blog, using the phrase "at home microdermabrasion system" as anchor text and link to the Personal Microderm site on SkinCareRx.  Minimum 100 words.  (Nine entries.)
6.  You must be a follower of my blog via Google Friend Connect.
7.  Please leave me a comment below, letting me know how you entered.  If you create a blog post, leave me the link to your site so I may check your handiwork.  :)
8.  If you are under the age of 18, please get your parent or guardian's consent before entering this giveaway as I will need to collect contact information from you.

This giveaway is open internationally and ends July 12, 2010 at 11:59 P.M. (PST).

Good luck!
Tweet, Tweet:  http://twitter.com/kate_gene
Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene
Disclaimer: This giveaway is being sponsored by SkinCareRx.com. I am not affiliated with the organization, nor am I being paid to endorse their products.  My views are not influenced by anything other than my personal experience.  Please use products at your own discretion.

June 18, 2010

How I Whitened My Pearly Yellows. [Before & After Photos]

You know your teeth are in dire need of whitening when you receive a compliment on your Flava Flav grill -- and you aren't wearing one.  Har har har!

[photo credit: www.loot-ninja.com]

My teeth have always been fairly white.  It wasn't until recently that I noticed some of my choppers had developed a golden tinge.  All those years of chewing tobacco and brushing with a bottle of Jack had finally caught up to me.  (I'm kidding.)

A few months ago, I used three Day White 9.5% ACP Syringes to erase some of the damage that was done, and was very pleased with my results.  The syringes come in stronger doses, which I would eventually like to give a whirl.  You can purchase complete whitening kits on Amazon.com; I got mine from my dentist.

[photo credit: www.gellysmiles.com]

Once a day, I'd swap out my usual toothpaste for Crest Sensitive, and brush.  Using this paste before applying the whitening gel helped reduce the painful side effects one can feel when whitening their teeth.  I'd then fill the rubbery custom trays my dentist made with minuscule dollops of the whitening gel, pop them in (for approximately thirty minutes or so), and let the gel work its magic.  If you don't already own custom trays, Amazon.com and Walmart sell inexpensive DIY ones. 

[BEFORE - This photo was taken in our bathroom, making my teeth appear even more yellow due to poor lighting.  (They're typically much whiter than this...  I blame the yellow bulbs!)  And no, that is not a piece of candy corn...  It's my incisor!]

[AFTER - This photo was taken in natural light.  No Picnik.com teeth whitening needed here!]

I noticed a dramatic difference after using just three syringes.  The only drawbacks?  I occasionally experienced sharp pains while the trays were in.  Also, my teeth were a bit sensitive to icy cold beverages throughout the entire whitening process.  Still, I believe it was worth it...  Beauty is pain!  ;)

Happy Whitening!

Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene

Disclaimer: These products were complimentary with a full exam and x-rays at my dentist's office. I am not affiliated with his organization, nor am I being paid to endorse any of these products.  My views are not influenced by anything other than my personal experience.  Please use these products at your own discretion.

$2 Shipping On Any Purchase

June 17, 2010

An Extremely Quick and Exciting Announcement!

Guess who is officially part of the DSK Jewelry Family?


Words cannot express how excited I am to be a part of such a wonderful group.

Here is a sneak peak of things to come...

[This is the cutest shipping label ever!]

[Candy and jewelry?  Yes, please, and thank you!]

I can't wait to share all of my gorgeous DSK jewels with y'all.

Thanks again for everything, Steph!  You are such a talented jeweler and business woman.  More importantly, you're an awesome friend!

Good night, everyone!

Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene

The Body Shop - Summer Sale 2010

June 11, 2010

Gift Card Haulin'

Sephora and Ulta employees have seen more of my mug lately than my adorable husband.  I refuse to rest until every last cent of my gift cards are spent!

Here are some of the items I purchased during my last trip to the mall:

[Essie Van D'Go Nail Polish]

My mission to find the perfect Summer polish has officially come to an end.  Essie Van D'Go is peachy, creamy, and neutral enough to wear with most of my wardrobe.  I love it!  It takes three coats to achieve the opacity and streak free finish I desire, but who cares?  This pretty polish is worth the extra elbow grease.

[Healthy Hoof Lacquer]

My former top coat, who shall remain nameless, used to make my brown eyes see red.  Every time I polished my nails, it always managed to make a streaky mess of my handiwork.  We Asians are born natural nail technicians, so I knew the repeated issue was of no fault of my own.  LOL!

My best friend purchased me a bottle of Healthy Hoof Lacquer because I am a centaur with dull hooves after I vented my top coat frustrations.  Once dried, this horse-friendly varnish produces a smooth and glossy looking finish.  I was hooked after one use.  The best part?  It's a mere $2.50.

[NARS Deep Throat]

It's a NARS blush.  Need I say more?


[NARS Striptease Gloss & Revlon Peach Gloss]

Both of these glosses feel lightweight, are incredibly pigmented, and appear pretty and peachy in their tubes.  Sadly, each are going to be returned as they made my kisser look alabaster.  (Momma didn't raise no Ganguro Girl!)  There is absolutely nothing wrong with the products themselves; the shades just weren't suitable for my skin tone.

The hunt for the perfect peachy lip gloss continues...

[Urban Decay 24/7 Eye Pencil in Zero]

I have never been one to line my waterline.  As a contact lenses wearer, I find products that close to my eyes irritating.  Hopefully this pencil will be the answer to my beauty-related prayers!

[Zebra Loofah]

How cute is this little guy?!  I have yet to use him because I thought it'd be gross to showcase a loofah post-use.  XD

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!  The hubby and I plan to BBQ, relax, and maybe squeeze in a little shopping.  I can't wait!


Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene

The Body Shop - $10 Body Butter - 468x60

June 8, 2010

It's been a long time/I shouldn't have left you/Without a dope beat to step to.

I have been slackin' on my Beauty Blogger pimpin', and I apologize.  Yours truly had a negative reaction to a new medication, and spent about a week spooning our porcelain jacuzzi.  (I was the big spoon.)  I also broke out in sex-ay hives...  on my face.  Shame on me for not doing a HFOTD!  Ha!

As some of you already know, I recently turned twenty-eight years old.  My darling little sisters surprised me with two Sephora gift cards to celebrate my senior citizenship.  I immediately placed an order online, but unfortunately, ended up returning everything to the store.

I drug my adorable husband with me to return my "great-but-not-for-moi" products.  He sweetly agreed to allow me to peruse for as long as I desired -- without dragging his feet or staring longingly at the exit signs.  I am proud to announce he did just that!  (In his eyes, Sephora and Ulta are the devil.  LOL!)


[NARS Mekong Eye Shadow]

[NARS Mekong Swatch]

Oh, how I wanted to love this shadow.  I love NARS' products and had been dying to get my hands on this particular product for months.  In the pan and swatched, Mekong appears to be a rich dark chocolate shade, speckled with delicate gold flecks.  It's gorgeous.  However, once it has been blended onto the lid, the Godiva goodness and metallic sparkles morph into a flat black hue.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, however, I already own two matte black shadows.


[Buxom Gloss in "Celeste"]

I am a HUGE Buxom Gloss fan.  Moisturizing, minty fresh, and emollient, they truly are my favorite glosses.  Sadly, "Celeste" was a miss for me as it wasn't as peachy as I had hoped it'd be.

What peach or pinky-coral gloss are you reaching for this Spring?


[Sephora by OPI Polish in "How Cute Is That?".  The photograph does not capture the polish's true color.]

This pretty polish would have been a keeper had it been a tad less orange and shimmery.  The good news?  The varnish itself was easy to apply and didn't chip for days!

Anyway, I hope you're all doing well!  I look forward to catching up on all of my favorite blogs.  New posts are in the works, but in the meantime, check out this awesome giveaway:

SmootchKiss is generously giving away quite a bit of MAC goodies, among other things.  Check out her blog here!


Ask Me Questions Anonymously:  http://www.formspring.me/KateGene


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