If you’re anything like me, you’re never satisfied with your makeup kit setup, how it transports, and especially, your on set kit situation. I’m continually on the search for new bags to improve, streamline and up the efficiency levels of my setbag and I think I may have found the right bag for my needs. Wanna know more? Then, let’s go, my friend!

beauty breakthroughs #2: the züca artist shoulder bag
black handle makeup brushes

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In This Episode We Cover:

  • The importance of re-evaluating your makeup kit from time to time.
  • Being open to minimizing, paring down, and simplifying by using versatile products.
  • That a little depotting can go a long way!


click here to read the transcript!


Episode 57: Show notes

black handle makeup brushes

As a seasoned film and TV makeup artist, I’ve seen it all when it comes to hauling around the essential tools of the trade.
But as time passes and experiences accumulate, I’ve finally come to realize the importance of streamlining my kit. And today, I’m excited to share with you my journey towards minimalism and the makeup bag that’s caught my eye along the way.

It all started wya back when, with a request from my dear Australian colleague, Kate Anderson.

She was on the hunt for the perfect makeup bag to accompany her on a job in the harsh West Australian outback. And thus began my quest to compile a list of the best makeup bags out there.

Now, let me pause for a moment to give a shout-out to Kate. Hello! Your request ignited a spark in me to reevaluate my own kit, and for that, I’m eternally grateful.

For years, I’ve been a loyal fan of the brand Züca. My trusty Züca Rolling Case has traveled with me across the globe, and now is happily serving as my go-to hair kit for special effects makeup.

However, as the years went by, I found myself gravitating towards a more minimalist approach, particularly when it comes to my standby kit for on-set work.

Gone are the days of lugging around a massive bag filled to the brim with every product imaginable.

I’ve witnessed too many colleagues suffer from back problems and pain due to the strain of carrying heavy kits. As much as I value being prepared on set, I refuse to sacrifice my physical well-being for the sake of convenience.

Enter the Züca Artist Shoulder Bag.

This sleek and functional bag is precisely what I’ve been searching for. Its discreet black exterior keeps my products out of sight, while its upright design allows for easy access on set.

Inside, I can neatly organize my smaller actor bags, paperwork, and essential tools, while the exterior pouch holds utensils and multi-tasking makeup palettes.

And speaking of palettes, I’ve become a quiet master of decanting and depotting my favorite products to save space and weight. And only my favorite and most versatile products, migth I add. Because if you know me, you know that depotting is something I think has gotten totaly out of control in the consumer world, but everything in moderation, right?

My kit now consists of just a few carefully selected palettes, including Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer Palette, MAC Cream Foundation Palette, and a versatile black palette for primary colors and flesh tones that are all rubber mask grease paint colors.

Of course, no kit is complete without a set of high-quality brushes. I swear by my Bdellium Mini Travel brushes, ensuring that I’m always prepared for any makeup emergency on set.

As I embark on this journey towards minimalism, I’ll be sure to keep you updated on my progress. And if you’re in need of recommendations for your own makeup bag, head over to themakeuprefinery.com/favorite-bag for my curated list of top picks.

In conclusion, remember that traveling light doesn’t mean sacrificing preparedness.

By carefully selecting the essentials and investing in quality tools, you can streamline your kit without compromising on quality or creativity. Here’s to a future of minimalism and efficiency in the world of makeup artistry. Until next time, stay organized!

Click here to listen to this episode!


Episode Transcript

[0:00]: There is a makeup bag that I have been eyeing off ever since I got a request from my dear Australian listener, friend, and peer of the makeup industry, Kate Anderson. So shout out to you, Kate. Hello, love. To put together, where was I?
To put together a list of recommendations of the best makeup bags out there.

Because she was looking for something specific to get her through a job in the harsh West Australian outback.
And in fact, if you’d like that list for your very own safekeeping, future reference, or perhaps investing for your very next job, I’ll send it to you, but I want to stay on track, so I’ll tell you at the end how you can get it.

Okay, so as a long-time lover of the brand Züca, Züca? Yes, my oldest and most fabulous Züca Roller Kit has been all over this planet with me, and now currently serves as my hair kit. That is hair punching, ventilating, and all things hair for me within the special effects makeup world. And it is working a treat, serving me in this capacity.

But in the last few years, and those years have at times been a little quieter, might I add, I’ve been focused on really paring down my kit.
Especially what we film and TV makeup artists refer to as, as our standby kit or on set kit.

Gone are the days of lugging that 20-pound massive bag that carries everything in the kitchen sink over my one shoulder and walking around like the hunchback of Notre Dame.

[1:48]: I’ve seen too many artists that I admire and respect have epic back problems, pain, and yes, even spinal surgery. I’ve seen too much of it to put my bones and muscles through the strain any longer.

There’s no point in sacrificing your body is there for work, no matter what you do, no matter how passionate you may be, just for the practice of being prepared on set.

Because, well, I’m not a Girl Scout as far as it being prepared. I don’t know. It’s just not me.

Now, that’s not to say that it doesn’t mean travelling light equates to being ill prepared by any means. It simply means just that. Travelling light. Carrying fewer items. Carrying smaller items, perhaps even a Z-Palette or two. or a Vueset.
Yes, I’m not entirely anti depotting, as you might think, but everything in moderation, right?

[3:22]: So getting back to the subject at hand, this Züca Artist Shoulder Bag is just where I’m headed on my next full time job, when that happens. So I wanted to let you know I’ll be investing in it soon, and that I’m ready.

First of all, it’s black. So when I walk on set, every single product that I carry isn’t on show to every grip, rigger, man that moves cables.

Because frankly, it’s none of their business what I put on my actor’s faces and what I rely on to take care of unexpected makeup happenings on set. It’s also upright standing. So, once I’m on set, I can set it down, and that’s that. It will hold my smaller actor bags inside it, as well as my call sheet and paperwork and pencils inside the lid, utensils and tools on the outside pouch, as well as a few multi tasking makeup palettes, as I mentioned.

Yes, they’re my decanted, depotted palettes, and I have three. Ah!

Well, actually I have four, they are a Kevyn Aucoin Sensual Skin Enhancer Palette that has the entire range of shades because I find that quite a useful and versatile product when I’m caught in a pinch. I have a MAC Cream Foundation Palette that is tiny, but I love it.

[4:47]: And I have a larger black palette. which holds all my primary colors, black and white, and a limited amount of flesh tones that are my rubber mask grease paint products. Another very versatile product. And I have a lip palette and that at the moment is split into 1940s in one row, 1950s in one row and 1960s in another row.

plus some neutrals as well. I might add another lip palette to this grouping this year actually that’s purely contemporary. We’ll see how my jobs pan out of course. And on top of that is a couple of alcohol based palettes and that’s it. Now of course I carry tools, scissors, tweezers, a mirror. A roll of Opsite tape, sunscreen, a water spray, and those sorts of things, but for the most part, that’s really it for now.

Oh, and of course, a set of Bdellium mini travel brushes that live in my onset kit, and they don’t go anywhere. So that way, I always have a set of brushes with me on set, no matter where I am. No matter what comes up, if I’m caught short or if I have to do something unexpected, I’m prepared.

But yeah, I just wanted to share this with you, putting it out there as a next kit upgrade in the quest, in the ultimate quest to minimize and pare down the makeup overkill that can occur, especially over the passage of time, the more makeup and products that you can collect.

[6:25]: Now, I’ll be sure to report back in some months time with my outcome.

Okay, short and sweet this episode, and as I promised, before I go, here’s how you can get a list of my best and favourite makeup set bags. Simply go to themakeuprefinery.com/favourite-bag. And I’ll do the rest.

That’s themakeuprefinery.com/favorite-bag. And I’ll put that link in the show notes as well. I’ll see you soon. Bye.

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