I have always loved the bright, shiny look of all the shimmer powders available on the market. Across the board in various brands – there are 1000000000000’s of shimmer colors to choose from – right? And yet I have always picked up my palette of shadows. Maybe because it is so easy.

But part of the reason I love Palettes so much is the part I played in developing them.  I fondly remember gluing pans to gray foam I purchased and cut and placed in clear Lucite boxes.  I named them Maquillage and sold them to friends on movies sets I worked on like Boogie Nights.  When Boogie Nights was being made, The Nakeds (by Ultima II) were in.  Bobbi Brown was queen of neutrality and bright colors were just extremely hard to find.  With the makeup story boards of Boogies Nights I diligently set out to find COLOR.  In a tiny, little, old school beauty supply in downtown Hollywood I found a pile of bold colors.  The packaging was so old I thought I found makeup someone forgot to take out of the case for a decade.  Little did I know at the time, I found a gem of a line that I would be associated with for  the next fifteen years, called La Femme.  I bought each and every one of the bright blues, greens, purples, pinks and corals, and they not only matched our story boards, but the little pots of real color were fabulous.  I was in love.

Later I worked with a friend to develop our own Palettes (that did not have to be glued to gray foam), we had black plastic vacuum formed  to fit 8 pans.  We matched them to various ethnic skin tones and launched a little known line called World Girl.  They had a clear top and our logo on the other side.  I believe we had to have 3000 made to fulfill the vacuum form minimum.  We sold them all, and I am sorry to say,  I only have a few of them myself and none of the original self-glued Maquillage Palettes.

By the time mass produced empty palettes came along I had already started MakeUpMania.com.  So what was a Palette lover to do?  Create The Palette Lab of course!  Not only did I want to sell the palette idea I loved so much,  but I wanted people to be able to make their own.  Which is what I always did and loved about the ideas of pans and palettes in the first place.  So I guess that pretty much explains why it is hard for me to turn my back on my dearly loved palettes.

But now, Stacks are back!

Back in the day I was making my own Palettes, I also spent alot of time creating my own Stacks.  Little pots that screw together so you can carry oodles of loose powder in your kits.  Between my Palettes and Stacks I could carry a tons of color, pressed or loose.  This past year, I started playing with stacks again.  I have found (much to my surprise)  that Stacks are great - almost as great as Palettes!  I have also found that mixing pressed color with shimmer or loose color is an easy thing to master and the amazing variances of outcomes is a true makeup junkies dream.

Start to collect stacks for your kit and cross fill with brands to your heart’s content, La Femme, OCC, Graftobian, etc. Since so much of the powders are made in the same dozen or so factories, especially in the US, the colors are repetitive at times. Therefore, I am looking at pigmentation and the last-ability to help choose what I want to work with. Now I am always impressed to  find colors I have never seen before. I love that OCC is doing this and adore their "Chlorophyll".  A true unique color in the loose color powder market. And I have my glitter stacks.  Next? Stacks of Rhinestones I hope to complete by Christmas for Holiday Makeover.  I have even Stacks of Lashes to carry more lashes easily and safe, than ever before.

Palettes and Stacks ....ahhhh Nirvana.

On Formulas: News application methods for makeup such as Ellis Faas or the IPKN Artist Wave. Bright Nail colors with lots of shimmer, Crème blushes (quickly trending up even faster this year), Chubby Pencils of lipstick, lip gloss, eye correctors, still big.  

Kit Building & Care: Mark the top lid of your stack by dipping it lightly in a shallow well of  nail polish color  You won’t need very much to saturate the top. Let it dry, then your stacks in your kit will be easy to remember.    You can carry 5 or 6 stacks of five, thus 25 -30 colors with you in your kit and they take up very little room.

Make-up Glossary:  Shimmer Powder(n) common generic name that describes a fine powder with high mica content and shines.

Make-up Historical Encyclopedia: Shimmer powders are not new in the market.  Stemming from the 70's dusts of colors that started slowly entering the market by companies such as Barone NY  (circa 1978) and Madeline Mono (with the superb  double pot concept). The bottom one being the main color (I had a royal turquoise color). The smaller top pot, that was attached to the lid of the bigger jar, had the highlight color. In this case, it was a shimmer white with a tan undertone.