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Palm Palettes: 3 Hand Tools Every Makeup Artist Needs

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Living the life of a makeup artist means creative opportunity and hard work, but it doesn't mean you have to deal with heavy equipment. Whether you're on a shoot or working backstage, these portable palettes are your right-hand (or left-hand) tools.

A stainless steel palette is considered a pro classic. Whether you’re mixing cream-based or liquid makeup, holding excess product, or applying on the skin, this kind of palette is always durable and good for a bustling shoot schedule. Some are completely solid, while others come with a thumb-hole for ergonomic use. Typically, a 3” x 4” ratio is most travel-friendly, available at any theater or makeup supply store.

Between lip mixing and liner smudging, things get a little dirty on the makeup table. Glamcor’s hygienic and disposable hand palettes are a simple yet brilliant concept—peel the clear film and slap it on your hand like a Band-Aid, mix cream-based makeup on it to your heart’s content, then toss the sucker when you’re finished. No extra hand-washing or hassle, and your client will feel extra comfortable knowing that you’re working on a medical-grade surface. Bonus points: A palette stuck over your hand will heat up product faster, and you can always take a few sheets to test products at the makeup counter.

We first spotted Crystal H.’s adorable Paw Palettes at this year’s IMATS LA, and we’ve been obsessed with the concept ever since. Like a metal palette, the PAW gives you ample surface space, but the genius bit is in the wrist strap made for hands-free function. The palette doesn’t stain and washes easily with soap and water, and comes in a magnetic version for your loose eye shadow, blush, or powder pans. The palette is also available in a array of adorable shapes—all aesthetic, but we guarantee you’ll reap compliments on set with a bow or heart design.