*This review is in no way sponsored, paid for, or endorsed by TEMU and it’s affiliates.*
TEMU is one of the hottest new selling platforms in America. And while it has been booming since it first made its debut, there are a lot of mixed reviews about it.
What I’m about to share with you is my 100% honest review of TEMU. It is my opinion. There are things that I like, things that I’m not crazy about and things that I love. I will tell you now- I don’t hate it. Hate is a pretty strong word, and one that I rarely use. While I know that not everyone will not agree with my opinion, I do ask that any comments been kept civil, polite and respectful. This is a Mom Blog, y’all…and this is one Mom’s honest review of TEMU.
Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I will receive commission for any purchase made through those links at no additional cost to you. Prices subject to change at any time
What Is TEMU?
I have seen a lot of people ask, “What is TEMU?” That question is usually followed by ten other questions about pricing, products and the business itself. I’m no TEMU expert. I have done some research, though.
According to TEMU’s website, they are a shopping app that sells and delivers, “Quality products sourced around the world.” In other words, it is a website and app that sells third-party products and ships them to consumers. Their tagline, “Shop Like a Billionaire,” insinuates that one can buy lots of fun and exciting products at a very cheap price that they might not be able to get otherwise.
With great marketing taglines and reviews popping up from users all over social media, TEMU has quickly become one of the largest online retail stores in the country. But what keeps a lot of people from using TEMU is the fact that they’re a sister company to Chinese e-commerce company Pinduoduo. And that’s where the controversy begins.
Americans are often very enthusiastic and loud about supporting American businesses before supporting businesses from China. But given the rising prices of American goods, it’s no wonder people are turning to companies like TEMU. Chinese company or not, they’re giving American consumers the prices that they want (even if the products aren’t always great).
So, to TEMU or not to TEMU? Let’s get into my opinions.
My Honest Review of TEMU: The Good
Believe it or not, I have had some great experiences with TEMU. When I first decided to write this review I also decided that I would write it after having several interactions with the company. I have now had 7 orders come from TEMU. After ordering that many times and experiencing an array of things, I think I now have enough of a history with TEMU to form a solid opinion. So you want to know some good things? Here you go.
It’s probably no surprise that the first part of my review of TEMU is about pricing. TEMU is well-known for offering low prices. But depending on what you buy, some of the items can be just as expensive as what you would get on Amazon. That’s where the silly little games and flashy coupons come in. No matter what the cost of the item is, TEMU almost always finds a way to make it “cheaper” for you.
One thing I like about the pricing is that I can get several items for way less than I would pay in store or on Amazon. I’m talking about things like office supplies (bubble mailers, thank you stickers, etc) and craft supplies at a huge markdown (You can see me rate some of them in my TikTok video at the end of this article). I’ve even gotten tools for my blog, such as a portable photo studio box, that would’ve been double or triple the price on Amazon. For someone that is starting a business, this can be a tremendous help. Organization items are also a lot more affordable, too. Yes, you have to be picky about the quality of some items but a lot of them are worth it.
TEMU might not be as big as Amazon in terms of how much there is to choose from, but TEMU still has a great selection of items. They sell everything from clothing to household items to crafting stuff…and of course much, much more on top of all of that. As a Mom, I don’t pay much attention to toys on there as I would on Amazon. But I will say, their imitation LEGO products are pretty legit despite not being name brand. I’ve purchased one already, put it together myself, and had no problems at all. In fact, it now sits pretty on my desk.
When it comes to clothing, they have some pretty cute and unique selections. I’ve ordered a few clothing items already. My favorite so far? The coffee hoodie that I got and will be using this Fall. It is cute, it was a great price and it’s super comfy. What more could a Mom ask for?
Shipping and Returns
Shipping and returns have also been smooth sailing with TEMU. Yes, I’ve had to make a few returns. They were mostly clothes. One time they told me not to return the item, and they just gave me the refund anyway. Another time I had to return a damaged product. They had no problems taking it back and refunding my money. And guess what…shipping returns back to TEMU is done through USPS and UPS. Both are trusted brands and used by many other retailers.
Shipping does take a little longer than Amazon, but again…you get what you pay for. That’s just one of the ways that they’re able to keep their costs a bit lower. Shipping usually takes anywhere from a week to a week and a half. Almost all of the tracking updates are available through the app. Like USPS, sometimes tracking doesn’t always get updated right away and so you get your package sooner than you think you’re going to get it.
My Honest Review: TEMU Games and Credits
One of the things that TEMU is notorious for is their games and credits. Once you sign up for TEMU and download the app, you have access to several ways to earn freebies and credits. I’ve tried several of these methods, so I want to go ahead and give you my honest review of them.
My Honest Review of TEMU’s Games
TEMU has several games that you can play and try to earn free stuff through. While I’ve given most of them a few minutes of my time, I’ve spent majority of my time playing the Fishland and Farmland games. They are totally free to play. You don’t have to buy anything and you don’t have to refer anyone. But here’s the catch: if you don’t buy anything and you don’t refer anyone then it’s going to take you a LONG time to get the free items. I’ve bought items (not because of the games), and if it weren’t for the game rewards from my purchases then I probably would still have a long ways to go.
Even when you refer people and buy items, it can still take a long time to earn the free items. I’ve been playing them for over a month. With Fishland I am just 3 cents away from getting a free rolling cart and free ear buds. But getting that 3 cents can take weeks because of the way they formatted the game.
With any of their games and coupons they hook you in by making the first 75% of the process really quick and easy. But then it starts to slow down. What once took you two spins will now take you 20 spins. And that’s where they get you…they’re hoping you’ll buy stuff or refer people just so that you can get your “free” stuff quicker.
If you can be patient and don’t need instant gratification, then go ahead and play the games. I have no problem taking my time, but I know some people just can’t wait like that. If you need that instant gratification I’d suggest you stay away from some of the games. They might cause you to spend more money then intended.
My Honest Review of TEMU’s Credits
TEMU will offer you credits every time you log in. No matter what your status is on TEMU, they will always try to give you coupons and other credits. Some of them are great…and some are not.
Let’s talk about to good credits first. I’ve gotten quite a few free, no-strings-attached credits from TEMU. Every day they give me 6 cents in my credit “bank.” It’s not a lot, but if you’re not constantly spending it the credits can add up. I’ve also signed up for TEMU Exclusive. TEMU Exclusive is great because you get 5% back in credit from any purchases you make. It’s free to join…you just have to find it in the app. I’ve gotten at least ten dollars back so far.
Now since this is an honest review of TEMU I have to tell you about the negative stuff, too. While the coupons and credits aren’t horrible, there is usually some kind of a catch. To use any of the coupons, you usually have to spend a great deal first. I hardly ever end up using the coupons. I haven’t encountered any credits that require a base purchase, but I’m sure they exist somewhere in the world of TEMU.
When it comes to the credits and coupons, what I have to say is this: know your limits, read the fine print just like with any other coupon, and definitely take advantage of the credits that have no strings attached.
My Honest Review of TEMU: The Bad
Because this is a review I need to talk about both the good and the bad. Like I said in my intro, though, I don’t hate TEMU. Yeah, they’re a Chinese company. Yes, some of their stuff is not the best in quality. But it’s on me to do my own research and read reviews before I buy things. You should, too. But if you don’t, here’s some stuff I can share with you that I’ve found on my own.
Is TEMU a Scam?
One big, black cloud that hangs around TEMU is its reputation as a “scam.” Many will tell you that the company is a scam. After reading a bit and doing some research, I can tell you it is not a scam in the sense that it is cheating you of your money. Yes, people have had trouble with orders (I think that happens with any company). And while they’re not accredited by the Better Business Bureau, ” […] the BBB has not designated it as a scam or unsafe company” (CBS, “Is TEMU Legit?”).
Many Americans are fearful of TEMU because of its data sharing and access to information on your phone. When I looked at the privacy restrictions and data access that TEMU has on my phone, and compared it with privacy/data access that the Facebook app has…well, Facebook can actually get more of your info than TEMU can.
Yes, TEMU has a rocky reputation. I’ll let you decide if you want to make it a major “con” or just a minor one.
TEMU is full of knock-offs. Honestly, this is where you could consider them to be a “scam.” If you’re one that doesn’t care about name brands, then great! You’ll be totally fine shopping on TEMU. But if it is important for you to have name-brand items then TEMU definitely isn’t for you.
If you were to take a look at TEMU right now, you’d see tons of knock-off LEGO items, Bogg bags, Stanley Cups, electronics and more. Yes, they’re a lot cheaper. I can’t speak for the quality because I haven’t purchased any knock-offs other than LEGO items (and quite honestly those were fine). But I’m sure that this isn’t great for copyright laws and higher-end product pricing.
Clothing is Tricky
Out of the few clothing items that I have purchased, only two things have actually fit me so far. I am on the plus size side of things, but the clothing sizes have been off in strange ways. Most of the time something has been too tight in one spot but then too big in another. And the way that they label sizes is even strange. Most 14s are XXL, but then don’t really fit like an XXL would. Normally an XXL is way too big on me, but a few times the XXLs from TEMU have been too small.
I’ll be honest, it has caused me to take even more caution when buying clothes from TEMU. The clothes that I have received so far remind me a lot of the cheap clothes that you can get on Amazon. At least I’m paying less on TEMU.
Honestly, TEMU is a Bit Spammy
If you do decide to sign up with TEMU I will warn you now: they love to send out a ton of spammy texts and emails. I’ve signed up for now for the sake of my research for this review. But man they send out a lot!
If you do sign up for alerts, I would recommend picking either email or text…not both. Told you I was going to be honest in this review of TEMU. You’ll thank me later!
This Was My Honest Review, But It’s Up to You
So there you have it…my honest review of TEMU. At the end of the day I can’t tell you that you should or shouldn’t shop with TEMU; that’s up to you. But if your main reason for not using them is because they’re a Chinese sister-company, I will tell you this: If you can buy random items off of Amazon and Shein then you can buy from TEMU. A lot of it is the same exact stuff but at a cheaper price.
There is so much more I could say about TEMU and my experiences with them. For now, almost all of my interactions and experiences have been positive ones. I will continue to buy things such as macrame cord, office supplies and other random household items from them. I’m telling you…some of their household decor is pretty cute and really cheap! But at the end of the day you have to decide what’s best for you and your family.
I will continue to update this article as I form new opinions or my experiences change.
Until next time…