Please review our Disclosures & Policies page, which also includes our Editorial Policy, Comment Policy, and Privacy Policy.

When did Temptalia begin? How did Temptalia begin?

Temptalia, as a blog, first began in October 2006. It began as a way to archive my daily looks for others to refer back to. Next to come were in-depth MAC Cosmetics Collection reviews.  Today, Temptalia is still well-known for its in-depth analysis and evaluations of the latest MAC collections. Eventually, the blog content grew and opened itself up to both MAC and non-MAC brands alike as well as including tutorials, how-tos, and beauty-related articles.

Who is Temptalia?  What does Temptalia mean?

Temptalia was founded and continues to be written, edited, etc. by Christine Mielke, aka me.  The one you see in photos, that’s me!  If you see an arm, that’s me.  If you see a set of nails, that’s me!   Unless otherwise noted, various body parts for swatching purposes, eyes, lips, or full face photos are all of me and my beauty battle-tested body, ha!  Temptalia is a made-up word (by me! when I was like sixteen!) that is supposed to mean the perfect woman–she’s smart, sexy, confident, and totally amazing.

Who is “we”?

Even though I am the writer and face “behind” the blog, it takes more than my effort to make Temptalia everything it is today.  First, my boyfriend handles the back-end tasks for Temptalia–this is web design, coding/programming, managing our servers, editing videos, and other technical details.  Big deal, you know!  All that code would make me dizzy!   Then there are my parents and family, who lend me tremendous moral support, and without such, I think I might have given up somewhere along the line.  But also?  You!  Without the people who read, comment, and participate on the blog, there just wouldn’t be a blog.  It wouldn’t be where it is today nor would it have a future.  I just feel it’s shortsighted to say me, me, me, because I feel like we’re a community and it’s WE, WE, WE!

How old are you?  Where do you live?  What do you do?

I’m 23, and I live in California. I am a full-time student in a JD/MBA program, which is a combined graduate program for law and business.  I have about eighteen months left until I graduate (which still feels like forever and a day!).

What is your eye color, hair color, skin tone?  Do you wear contacts?  What is your ethnicity?

I have hazel eyes, brown-black hair, and a medium complexion with warm undertones (I am MAC NC25 for reference).  I do not wear contacts!  I don’t even own any, though I imagine in the next year or two I’ll need to wear my glasses often enough that I’ll want to give contacts a try.  I’m half Vietnamese, quarter Swiss, and quarter German.  I don’t speak any of the languages associated with my ethnicity, unfortunately.  I know a little French (though I took four years of it during high school), but I consider myself a language loser and only know one: English!

What camera do you use? video camera?  Any photography tips?

I use a Nikon D90.  I have several different lenses (they’re all Nikon lenses), including the kit lens, a macro-specific lens, and a portrait lens.  I use a Canon Vixia HF S100 for video.  For photography, I recommend reading photography blogs as well as your camera’s manual.  Seriously – I couldn’t take a photo worth a penny until I read my manual.  All sorts of lightbulbs went off when I finally got around to reading through it!  Oh, and macro mode.  That’s always good!  And if the flash washes things out, try to lower it through your camera’s settings or diffuse it by putting a tissue over the flash itself.  But honestly, just try taking your camera and taking photos of the same object but with different settings.

How long have you been blogging?

Temptalia began in October 2006.  If you consider services like Livejournal (like just a personal journal, not communities or the expansion of the service) a blog, then somewhere around ten years.  If you don’t (and I don’t–it was a journal to me), three and a half years.

What blogging platform do you use?  Where did you get your layout from?

Temptalia is run on WordPress and has been since it began!  The design and look of Temptalia is coded and designed from scratch by my boyfriend, aka the Tech Guy.

What tips do you have for new bloggers?

Do it because you love it.  This is especially true in such a saturated niche like beauty.  I’d also suggest working on your writing if you find you are not perfect out-of-the-box, because it’s important to stay true to your voice, but if you can convey it with a good grasp of the language you’re writing in, so much the better!  Oh, and don’t jump the gun – be patient.  Very few blogs skyrocket to success, so it’s important to remember to keep on bloggin’ and cultivate patience while you grow your readership.

Do you receive free samples?

Yes, I do.  All posts have a disclosure statement as necessary to let you know if the product was provided by either a public relations firm or the brand itself.  Samples allow me to review a broader range of products, but they also allow me to review products that you request without completely emptying my wallet!  You can read our full disclosure and policies here.

Do you get paid to review products?

No, I don’t.  I do not accept offers for paid reviews.  In case there’s confusion, I consider paid to be cash compensation, not merely supplying a product.  Whenever product samples are provided, they are on a for-consideration basis only.  This means that a public relations firm or brand sends the product without knowing whether the product will be reviewed.    You can read our full disclosure and policies here.

What is your comment policy?

Please see our Comment Policy in our Disclosures & Policies.

Why haven’t you reviewed x, y, or z product yet?

With so many new beauty products coming out each month, it would be quite the task to review each and every one! We try to review products that interest us as well as products we feel would interest readers. We do try our best to review buzzed-about products as they are mentioned, too.

What is your review policy? Why don’t I see more negative reviews?

All reviews are written with integrity and honesty. Products are reviewed personally by Christine unless otherwise noted. Skincare products are tested for a minimum of three weeks, but often as long as six weeks. Color products (like eyeshadows, lipsticks, etc.) are swatched and/or used at least once before a review is written. All products are physically present so they can be touched, smelled, swatched, and the like as necessary.

We believe in a pro/con format, and we recognize beauty products’ efficacy and usefulness will vary from person to person. What breaks one person out may be another person’s holy grail product. Temptalia does not believe in bashing products, and instead we report fairly on the personal experience in using the product only.  If the color isn’t flattering on me, I’m not going to say it sucks — I’m going to say that I didn’t like it on me, but then go on to describe the product itself.

Please refer to our Editorial Policy in our Disclosures & Policies.

Do you get paid to give products a positive review?

No, absolutely not. Temptalia takes pride in its integrity and honesty in product reviews, so we do not work with any brand who puts any limitations or conditions on the content of a review. Any time we work with an advertiser or a brand, we are firm in our commitment to complete honesty in our product evaluations.

Products submitted by brands are always for consideration only with no guarantee of a review, let alone a positive one. Any posts that are sponsored by an advertiser will be clearly marked as sponsored, but we still retain our commitment to honest reviews. We refuse sponsorship opportunities that put any restrictions on our honesty policy, as we feel it would be a huge disservice to our readers and reputation.

Please refer to our Editorial Policy in our Disclosures & Policies.

Do you get samples from brands in exchange for a positive review?

No, absolutely not.  Brands do send us samples for consideration only.  This process allows a brand to send us a product they want us to cover, but there are no conditions on it.  We do not guarantee a review, and they do not expect a review.  They merely are hoping we like it or find it interesting enough to cover on the blog.

We have given unfavorable or less-than-glowing reviews on brands’ products or launches, and we have never lost a relationship over it.  The brands we work with do not take issue with negative reviews.  We are foremost concerned with presenting our honest experience, whatever that may be.

Samples also allow us to cover products and brands we otherwise might not be able to, whether because of accessibility, affordability, or the like.  Because of this, we are able to provide you with more in-depth coverage of different brands, their products, and the latest launches and product releases.

Please refer to our Editorial Policy in our Disclosures & Policies.

How can I get more involved with Temptalia?

We have several ways for you to get more out of Temptalia! We encourage you to join our forums, so you can discuss and gab about beauty and more with fellow readers. You can also follow us on Twitter for our latest updates and beauty adventures. Finally, we are always looking for submissions from our readers to feature on the blog!

Can we do a link exchange? Can I link to your blog?

Unfortunately, Temptalia is not currently accepting additional link exchanges. Yes, you can always link Temptalia! We appreciate and welcome links back to Temptalia. As Temptalia grows, so do the opportunities, which means we can better cover the products and events that matter most to readers — not to mention more giveaways!