Tuesday, December 14th, 2010


Welcome to Swatch-all-idays!

One of my resolutions for 2011 is to be more organized, stay on top of things, and be more realistic about the volume of products I can review in detail with full swatches.  Ideally, I’d love to start off with a clean slate so-to-speak by clearing out an ever growing backlog of products I’ve photographed, swatched, and often tested, but for whatever reason, never got through the photo editing process and thus were never written up.  I am often ambitious and well… don’t have as much time as I’d like!  I would like to do better for you in 2011!

For the next couple of weeks, I’ll be doing quick reviews.  I’ll try to include as much relevant information as I can based on my notes, and I will, of course, indicate if I haven’t tested and only swatched.  These reviews are going to be quick and dirty–and sometimes posts are not as detailed as I like (e.g. a blush is not shown on the face, only swatched).  I’m clearing out photos I’ve had since June with the total number nearing 10,000 (these are all raw, unedited photos).

A couple of weeks ago, I asked readers whether quick reviews were helpful as opposed to not reviewing at all.  I would love to do full, detailed reviews for every product–trust me, I would!–but I’m recognizing that I need to stop the bleeding before I can heal the wound.  Readers said that photos and swatches are helpful enough and worth posting, if I am unable to do a full review.  I will still have regular, full reviews being posted everyday, just like usual, but I will also be posting additional quick reviews.  Like stocking stuffers!  All extras on top of normal daily content.

It may be the holidays… but it’s SWATCH-ALL-IDAYS here on Temptalia!

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010


The Makeup Dupe List – Beta

If you’ve checked out The Dupe List in the past few days, you’ll notice it has changed a bit!  We are currently going through beta testing of The Dupe List.  Shaun–the tech guy–is looking for your feedback.  If you have comments, questions, or suggestions regarding the beta release, please e-mail them.

Please note that there are upcoming features/fixes to be implemented, such as improved sorting, pagination, search, and further clean-up of the list itself (e.g. spelling, capitalization, etc.).  We also plan to make brand the first selection, and then the Shade drop-down will list appropriate shades for that brand.

Thursday, November 25th, 2010


Giving Thanks — Happy Thanksgiving!

Here in the States, it’s Thanksgiving!  It’s one of my favorite holidays, because people come together and (hopefully) enjoy the company. This is also an excellent time to think about the things and people we are thankful to have in our lives–and let them know it!

10 Things I’m Thankful For (Beauty Edition)

  • Jack Black Lip Balm to keep my lips moisturized and help them recover after a mad-dash lip swatching session.
  • Guerlain Rouge Gs for coming out with the most flattering shades so I actually enjoy just wearing lipstick sometimes!
  • China Glaze For Audrey for being the perfect color for summer toes.
  • NARS Smudgeproof, because it keeps my shadow in place without affecting the finish and never muting the color.
  • Tom Ford Oud Wood for making me want to writhe around in my own sexiness after a spritz, LOL!
  • Chanel Exceptionnel for keeping my lashes long, black, and thick.
  • Le Metier de Beaute Echo, because you instantly brighten my cheeks and never look like it’s too much.
  • Benefit Sugarbomb is a highlighting, barely-there blusher come true and a total go-to on lazy days.
  • MAC Brushes — one needs great tools, too!
  • Chanel Dragon Rouge Allure Laque, because it makes me feel like a vixen!

10 Things I’m Thankful For (Life Edition)

  • The amazing emotional support I receive from my family — they are so encouraging and always there cheering me on.
  • My boyfriend for enduring my mindless, nonstop chatter and need to talk 24/7!
  • THE MELLANATOR! for being my heart dog.  He is my cuddle-bug and wiggling machine that always warms my heart.
  • That I only have five more months of school!  AH!
  • Starbucks White Chocolate Mochas with soy, whip, sugar-free hazelnut, and half-caff.  They help me work through the tired!
  • New friends (and their fur-babies)!
  • Reality TV to help me dissolve into mindlessness after a long day.
  • To-do lists (and Outlook!) that help me organized and to not forget half of the things I need to do everyday.
  • Italian food, even if it does go straight to my thighs!
  • Fuzzy socks that keep your feet nice and warm all night long.

And of course, I’m beyond thankful for the amazing readers we have here at Temptalia! :)

What are you thankful for?

Friday, November 5th, 2010

Finalist for the 2010 Blogging Scholarship

Hey everyone!  I was the first runner-up in the contest, and I just wanted to thank you for all of the support!   The voting closes tomorrow (Friday) at noon PST.

Background: A couple of weeks ago, I submitted an essay (no more than 300 words–do you KNOW how hard it was to stay within that word count?!) towards the 2010 Blogging Scholarship, which recognizes students who blog. The first place winner will receive a $10,000 scholarship to help pay for school (I am a JD/MBA candidate, graduating in May!). I would love it if you would consider voting for me as I am one of ten finalists (I am Christine Mielke!). It would be incredible to show the Power of Temptalia! :) Voting ends November 5th at noon PST!

Though I said it earlier in my last Tartan Tale review video, I really do feel like a winner no matter the outcome of the scholarship. I have the support of so many amazing readers and viewers, and I will still have it tomorrow and the next day. You are why I blog, you are why I strive to do better each day. It’s cliche, corny, and cheesy, undoubtedly, but it’s how I feel. I’m a sap, and you’ve all really made the week for me, because I know you’re here with me. Thank you!! Every time I think about how much support you have all shown me, I get teary eyed and if I’m not careful, I’ll start sobbing!

P.S. — Please be respectful of other finalists — everybody brings something to the table! :)

Wednesday, October 27th, 2010

Finalist for the 2010 Blogging Scholarship

Hey everyone! Before we get back to MAC Tartan Tale coverage (edited 11/4:  I’m mildly amused that this STILL holds true, even a week later), I wanted to take a moment to ask for your support. A couple of weeks ago, I submitted an essay (no more than 300 words–do you KNOW how hard it was to stay within that word count?!) towards the 2010 Blogging Scholarship, which recognizes students who blog. The first place winner will receive a $10,000 scholarship to help pay for school. I would love it if you would consider voting for me as I am one of ten finalists (I am Christine Mielke!). It would be incredible to show the Power of Temptalia! :)  Voting ends November 5th at noon PST!

Excerpt from my essay…

Blogging is vital to me, because it has given tangible meaning to my heart and soul. Through blogging, I have learned my passion lies in beauty by providing firsthand experiences to help others. Blogging is my method of self-expression, but it has brought me together with likeminded individuals and allowed us to build a community based on that passion. I have been given opportunities to interact with my readers, both on and offline, and there is nothing more rewarding than being able to help someone—even if it is recommending a lipstick. That lipstick recommendation just might inspire confidence in a self-conscious teenager!

You can vote for me here! :)  Voting closes tomorrow (Friday) at noon PST.

Thank you!

Though I said it earlier in my last Tartan Tale review video, I really do feel like a winner no matter the outcome of the scholarship. I have the support of so many amazing readers and viewers, and I will still have it tomorrow and the next day.  You are why I blog, you are why I strive to do better each day.  It’s cliche, corny, and cheesy, undoubtedly, but it’s how I feel.  I’m a sap, and you’ve all really made the week for me, because I know you’re here with me.  Thank you!!  Every time I think about how much support you have all shown me, I get teary eyed and if I’m not careful, I’ll start sobbing!

Friday, October 1st, 2010


Happy 4th Anniversary, Temptalia!

Four years ago, back in October 2006, Temptalia began. We posted a whopping 230 looks on October 3rd, 2006–nearly a year’s worth of looks, prior to the day, because Temptalia began as an archive for my makeup looks, which I posted on the MAC Cosmetics Livejournal Community. It’s been quite the journey, an ever-exciting ride, and I know there’s so much more ahead of us. I look forward to the next year, and the next, and hopefully many more!

To date, Temptalia has…

  • … received 416,470 comments
  • … published 7,818 posts
  • … written 1,780 review posts (keep in mind many cover more than one product or shade!)
  • … created 840 looks.
  • … asked 1,086 questions through Temptalia Asks You.
  • … received 18.8 million visits, 58.9 million pageviews
  • … held over 300 contests.

I can’t believe I was an undergraduate when I started this blog and now I’m seven months away from graduating my JD/MBA program. I never thought this is where I would be, but this is exactly where I want to be. I live and breathe this blog, and I love every minute of it. It has given me purpose when I had none, and it has shown me where my passion truly lies. There is just something about the beauty of the Temptalia community that brings joy into my life. This was not my dream when I was five years old, but it has become the dream I never dared to dream. It is everything and more–even better than the dream.

Fun Facts

At present, Temptalia reaches approximately 500,000 unique people every month, with 1.4 million visits and 4.3 million pageviews per month.

I’d like to take this moment to thank all of the amazing people who have helped to make Temptalia what it is today.

To readers: The biggest thank you of all is to all of you. To all of the lovely people who have believed in me, believed in the spirit of Temptalia, and continued to visit, to support us, and to watch us grow–to participate and contribute to that growth. It is your feedback that helps us know what we do right, what we do wrong; your participation and contributions that give the site diversity and variety; your passion that inspires and motivates me to continually improve Temptalia. You have all watched me grow up (and are still watching me); you have seen me through my struggles, and you are all helping me reach my dreams. You have and will always be my focus and greatest motivator, and I can’t thank you enough for giving me the opportunity.

To my family: I will be eternally greatful for my family; my parents, sister, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. Their enduring support that never wavers, not even once, gives me the strength to make it through moments of doom and pride in myself at each marker of success. Their love and support help me to achieve things I never thought I would, but they always knew I could. To my Mom: she is my mentor, as I work towards making my dreams come true; the most inspiring woman I know–my role model. To my Dad: he keeps me grounded and reminds me to have fun, who checks Temptalia regularly and even watches my YouTube videos after a long day at work. To my sister: for keeping makeup fun and learning about even more so. To my grandmothers, aunts, and uncles: for all of your word-of-mouth recommendations to anyone who listens, for knowing everything I’m capable of and never letting me forget it. You have helped me become the person I am today and shaped the person I will be in the future. You all drive me to reach for bigger, better things; to dream bigger dreams; and to know I will always have you to lean on.

To the boy: The level of emotional support you have given me over the years has been insurmountable. There is nothing that can repay you for that. For every time a comment has made me cry, you have been my shoulder; you have listened to me babble on and on about the same thing for hours on end, and you never tell me to shut up. For every success I have found, you have been there to share it with me. I look at you and know that I’m right where I’m supposed to be. Shaun does much of the behind-the-scenes work here at Temptalia, many things that are virtually invisible but absolutely essential. He is much more than just my emotional support–he’s technical support for all things Temptalia!

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to visit the blog, leave a comment, ask a question, or simply lurk! Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your unending support over these past four years! There are never enough words to express to you what this blog has become to me, what you have all become to me. Every morning I wake up feeling lucky because I’m fortunate enough to be able to bring you Temptalia each day. Thank you!

See some then & nows! Continue reading →