In makeup school I got a shitty Kryolan lip palette as part of my basic kit. Kryolan isn’t a bad brand by any means, but for some reason the colours included meant it was virtually impossible to mix a natural brown or pink shade. The formula was also quite sheer and slippery—not good for longevity, especially if you’re doing wedding makeup.
My solution has been to gradually build up the most expensive item in my kit: a custom MAC lipstick palette housed in a Vueset Tahiti container. I picked the Vueset Tahiti because it’s transparent, airtight and incredibly compact, while still fitting a full MAC lipstick in each well.
I did quite a bit of research before buying the Vueset Tahiti 24 section palette from Camera Ready Cosmetics for $14 USD. The fact its transparent and compact was the biggest factor—it’s infinitely better than rummaging through a bag of identical black lipstick tubes trying to find the one you want. (You can also Back-to-MAC the tubes and trade them in for more.)
I read conflicting advice on whether the Vueset is microwaveable or not, because although you can just scrape the product in, I wanted to melt it down—I think it looks better that way. The CRC site says that it is microwaveable, but that it’s at your own risk.
I microwaved it a few times (the only downside of not having 24 lipsticks to depot all at once) with no problems, and then one day put it in the microwave and it started arcing and flashing and buzzing like a lightsaber. I was mildly freaked out, as you might expect, but discovered that if you push the metal hinge pins so they aren’t sticking out the end of the hinges then you can microwave it without threat of destroying the microwave, your house or your very expensive palette of lipsticks.
(I mean, still do it at your own risk. Don’t blame anything on me.)
See, how much better does it look when the lipsticks are all melted down? I microwave it in 30 second bursts (usually requires 3–4 bursts) and then leave the palette in the microwave to cool completely before I take it out.
One thing is if you’re putting brand new MAC lipsticks in, and scraping all the product from the bullet, they’ll fit in a pan but with no room to spare. This means there’s a risk of spillage/cross-contamination when they’re hot. This is usually only on the very surface, though, so you can scrape that off when the lipstick is dry.
I have added a couple more lipsticks since taking the photos for this blog post, so my palette is nearly complete! The retail cost of replacing it is insanely expensive by this point (24 x $40 per MAC lipstick = nearly $1000 NZD) so uh… I hope people don’t know where I live. It has been built up over a long period of time, though, and I buy a lot of my MAC stuff from their US site where it’s much cheaper. There are also some PR sample lipsticks in there and a whole lot of Back-to-MAC lipsticks.
I’ve swatched out all the lipsticks and labeled them as well as I could. You can see there are a few that I’ve forgotten the names of, but I don’t think it matters that much—that’s not what I’m using them for.
Having a palette makes freelancing much easier, as I have everything on hand in one place and can mix shades if need be, too. If I want to use one of these colours for personal use, I can just scrape some out the same way I’d scrape some out for a bride, and keep that separate.
Of course, if you’re not a makeup artist, there are smaller Vueset palettes with fewer pans!
How would you feel about scraping a brand new MAC lipstick into a palette? Sacrilege?
Are you a makeup artist? Would you use a lipstick palette?