Thursday, November 28th, 2013


The best part about Thanksgiving is it serves as a reminder to be thankful for all of the good things in our lives.  It’s also an occasion where families and friends come together to share in holidays.  I’m so excited to see everyone later today when they pop by! Even if Thanksgiving isn’t a tradition in your part of the world, the meaning behind it is something we can all share in.  I’d love to take a moment to share a few things I’m thankful for, and I’d love to hear some of yours!  Happy Hanukkah, as well, to those who celebrate!

5 Things I’m Thankful For

  1. An amazing, supportive, kind, loving husband.  He’s someone who sees me day in and day out, and he always knows how to make me smile and laugh until I have tears in my eyes.
  2. The support and love of my family and extended family.  I am so fortunate that my family has continuously supported, encouraged, and helped however they could to help me reach my dreams.  It is so good to love and be loved.
  3. My dearest, sweetest boy–Mellan–for his warm, wiggling body, his wet nose, his kangaroo imitations, for always putting a smile on my face.  He has such spirit, such a positive, uplifting outlook.
  4. Good friends are hard to find, and best friends the rarest jewel in the crown.  I am so fortunate to count a few inspiring people in my circle of friends–I have learned so much from them and they have helped me grow.
  5. All of you, who have given me purpose and have helped make living my dream possible.  Thank you so much for your support over the years–your readership, your comments, your questions.

5 Things I’m Thankful For — Beauty Edition

  1. Smart doctors; this year, I finally managed to get a handle on my acne, and I owe that to my primary care doctor for prescribing me topical treatments.  I am forever indebted to her for the state of my skin right now!
  2. Coral in any shape or form, whether blush, lipstick, gloss, or eyeshadow, I continue to love you however you may be released next!
  3. Unusual lip colors thanks to brands like OCC and Illamasqua, because these let us be creative, free, and have fun with our makeup!
  4. Highly shimmery gloss has become a go-to when I need a lip color on the go and have nothing else in my purse! It adds lots of oomph and shine in a single stroke.  (Bobbi Brown High Shimmer Lipgloss, I’m looking at you!)
  5. Richly pigmented, hydrating lipstick seems to have been introduced over and over again by more and more brands this past year; I feel like I have five favorite formulas, not just one!

What are you thankful for this year?

Thursday, November 21st, 2013


I’m very, VERY excited announce the launch of the Foundation Matrix 2.0!

There are now over 900 foundations and 300 concealers–with over 10,000 shades in the database. The most significantly added feature of 2.0 is voting, which allows the community to further vet matches by joining voices together when shades match, and even when they don’t. When something doesn’t match, you can let others know why–maybe it’s too light or too dark, too warm or too cool. There is strength in the power of the community; if 20 people agree that it’s a pretty good match, you’ll have more confidence opting for that shade. This will also help us better refine shades so only the best matches are shown over time.

Visit The Foundation Matrix 2.0!

The latest version of the Foundation Matrix can be used in two ways:

  • Use Your Existing Foundation: If you already know of a match (or a close match!), simply choose “use my existing foundation.” You can begin typing the brand of your foundation or select from a list of popular foundations. Once you’ve selected the brand, you’ll need to select your shade. That’s it — then you’ll get matches that the community (all of the information the original Foundation Matrix used) and staff have said may be matches.
  • Start From Scratch: If you’re not sure of a match, you can select your under tone and skin tone and see matches that correspond.


There are over 400 shades swatched across 14 different brands–and we hope to add more and more as time goes on! We would like to extend our most heartfelt thank you to these brands for supporting us by generously providing product samples of their foundation ranges so we could swatch and photograph. Thank you to (in alphabetical order) bareMinerals, Benefit Cosmetics, Bobbi Brown, Clarins, Cover FX, Dior, Hourglass, Illamasqua, LORAC, MAC Cosmetics, Make Up For Ever, Maybelline, NARS, and Urban Decay for believing in our dream and vision for the Foundation Matrix.


Additional features:

  • Filter and refine your results by brand, coverage, type, finish, and price
  • Add shades to your Vanity or your Wish List for future reference
  • Get more details about the formula by clicking “about this formula”
  • See a full breakout of voting results by viewing the shade’s page


Friday, October 18th, 2013

Free for Haul Friday

Welcome to Free For Haul Friday!

  • Haul: Guerlain Crazy Meteorites, MAC Divine Night!
  • Weekend plans:  Swatching/testing/reviewing!
  • Pen or pencil?:  Pen!

Share your pet photos to the Temptalia Pets flickr group! :)

This week’s Mellan photo/video…


Someone spotted a bug! I love that his forehead wrinkles when he’s thinking!

Thursday, October 10th, 2013


Happy 7th Anniversary!

Time flies when you’re having fun — what a year it has been! We built the foundation of one of my dream projects, MyTemptalia, earlier this year, and we have so many cool things we’re still working on (cough, Foundation Matrix, cough) and hope to show you soon.   There are so many reminders of what life is about this time of year, and I’m so thankful and truly, truly blessed to be here today.  It is an incredible honor to be able to do something I love for a living, and it’s even more incredible that it’s become something that really has a fantastic team behind it.  From my mom and dad who have been a mentors from day one, to my now-husband who has worked tirelessly behind the scenes since the inception of the blog, and to my brother-in-law who recently joined the team this past January, who is a real code monkey.  Even my sister has helped behind-the-scenes with data gathering (much of the MyTemptalia product database was compiled by her!).  Quite honestly, every single member of my family–including extended–has given me tremendous support.

But really?  The most important person to thank is you!  Without readers, Temptalia wouldn’t be where it is today.  It is thanks to your support and your comments and your participation that we can call ourselves an amazing, thriving community of beauty enthusiasts.  Thank you for giving my life purpose, and thank you for giving me the opportunity to do this for you everyday!

To date, Temptalia has…

  • … received 949,707 comments
  • … published 15,775 posts
  • … written 5,091 review posts (some cover more than one product or shade)
  • … asked 2,187 questions through Temptalia Asks You.
  • … received 99 million visits, 289 million pageviews
  • … held over 486 contests.
  • … given 314 A+ ratings and 46 F ratings
Friday, August 30th, 2013

NARS Mesopotamia Eye Paint
NARS Radiant Cream Compact Foundation — Light

NARS Radiant Cream Compact Foundation looks to make cream foundation modern by using the latest and greatest technology to create a cream foundation that has a lightweight, luminous finish that can be applied wet or dry with buildable coverage. It’s a formula that is designed to blend seamlessly (which is the aspect that encouraged me to write-up a how-to on contouring and highlighting with cream foundation) while enhancing the skin’s natural radiance.

If it’s been on your radar or wishlist, check out the NARS + Temptalia Foundation Matrix to find your shade match!

It’s been awhile since I’ve reached for a cream foundation, because they’ve often felt too heavy and provided too much coverage in the past, and cream foundation has come a long way over the years–so I was incredibly curious to learn more about NARS’ take on it. What better way to learn more about it and how best to incorporate cream foundation into your beauty routine than getting the scoop from NARS’ International Lead Makeup Stylist Uzo! She began as a resident makeup artist and has since worked with such high profile clients as Drew Barrymore, Naomi Campbell, Olivia Munn, and Molly Sims and creates looks for designers, like Marc Jacobs, at New York Fashion Week.

NARS Mesopotamia Eye Paint
Uzo, NARS International Lead Makeup Stylist

TEMPTALIA: First things first, what’s your favorite way to apply Radiant Cream Compact Foundation (RCCF)? What are your go-to tools?
UZO: I really like to use my fingers to apply RCCF. Nothing beats using the fingertips to blend this luxurious cream seamlessly into the skin to give the complexion that natural, radiant finish. RCCF is packaged with a sponge that can be used wet or dry, and is great for both application and blending. The sponge really helps for a quick and smooth application, but I always go back and use my fingertips to diffuse product to perfection. I use a concealer brush to blend product around the eye area with more precision. I may also use a foundation brush when I want to sweep on deeper shades of the foundation on the cheeks and jaw line for contouring.

NARS Mesopotamia Eye Paint
NARS Radiant Cream Compact Foundation — Medium

TEMPTALIA: Have you found an unusual but incredible way to use the new formula?
UZO: Although, RCCF was designed to make skin look its absolute best when used alone, I will play with different formulas when I want to make skin look super-glamorous and red carpet-ready. I use a liquid foundation, first, to create a smooth, even and radiant canvas and then blend a little amount of RCCF on to the cheeks and forehead to give skin more coverage. Skin looks luxe and super-polished and never cakey or heavily made up.

Check out the rest of the interview!  Continue reading →

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013


Before Contouring / After Contouring with NARS Radiant Cream Compact Foundation

Contouring with cream foundation is an easy way to achieve seamless, blended contours and highlights because you’re using products designed to work together in order to create a canvas that transitions from shadow to skin to highlight beautifully. Highlighting and contouring bring back definition and shape to the face, especially after you’ve created a beautiful, flawless blank canvas with your foundation. Because foundations are one color, and depending on the coverage, they can leave the face looking flat and shapeless.

More of us are familiar with highlighters–shimmering powders and creams patted along the high planes of the face to reflect light–but contouring can be a more difficult and daunting task. The best part about makeup, though, is freedom of choice; you can go as defined as you’d like, so you don’t have to go for a dramatic contour and highlight but something subtle that just defines and helps lift the face. I’ve tried to show a more dramatic contour (but you could go further and make it even more dramatic) so that you can clearly see the differences before and after.

Don’t be afraid if you’re new to contouring!  Uzo, NARS International Lead Stylist, recommends beginners to use cream foundations for contouring “because they are easier to blend” as “powders in an unskilled hand can make contouring look harsh and un-blended while liquids don’t give enough definition. It is not about having a stripe of darker, un-diffused color along the sides of the face but subtly blended dimension that defines the cheekbones (and jaw line).”

With the full range of NARS Radiant Cream CompactAdvertisement at my disposal, I matched my skin tone match to Santa Fe, which is described as a “medium with peachy undertone,” and it is categorized as “Medium 2.” This is the product I used to create the blank canvas (as my regular foundation) to even out my skin color and cover any blemishes and imperfections.

Find your shade match using our NARS + Temptalia Foundation Matrix–just enter your current foundation and out pops your new shade match!

To highlight, I chose Siberia. Generally, your highlight shade should be two to four shades lighter than your actual skin color. To contour, I used Cadiz along with Benares. I opted for two, because I wanted a subtler contour on areas like my nose and eyes, but I wanted a deeper, more dramatic contour for slimming and defining my cheekbones and jawline. Generally, you will want to select a shade that is two to four shades darker than your natural complexion and opt for a shade that has similar undertones to your skin tone or one that is more neutral.

Now, get the step-by-step!  Continue reading →