Depotting Eyeshadows & Blushers

depottingmainFancy making room in your stash for – dare we say it – more makeup? Create your perfect palette and save a little cash by depotting your stash…

You may be wondering why anyone would want to depot their palettes and pretty blushers, and it’s a fair point. Depotting is mostly done by makeup artists or those who have a few more blushers or shadows than they have room for. Moreover, brands like MAC come up cheaper if you purchase the products in the refill pans rather than in the full packaging, so it is more economical in the long run too.

We recently posted our tips on building a MAC palette – this is helpful if you don’t know where to start with shades and what you need for palettes, but of course you may need a few pointers on how to actually depot your eyeshadows and other items from their packaging. For this reason, we’ve put together a little how-to.

There are a number of palettes available for you to buy to fit your depotted products in, if you have only MAC shadows and blushers, it may be wise to get the MAC Large Pro Palette (£14) and the 6-Pan Blush Insert (£6.50) or the 15-Pan Eyeshadow Insert (£6.50) and work from there.
Alternatively, if you want to fill your palette with more than just MAC – for example Urban Decay or a mix of brands, you could purchase a Z Palette (£15.99). The Z Palettes have a magnetic bottom so you just place your depotted products in and arrange until you’re happy – they also come with magnet sticks which you can place on the bottom of your depots to make sure they stay in place. Perfect!

Now to get started…

You Will Need:

  • MAC, Urban Decay etc. eyeshadows or blushers
  • Empty palette
  • Aluminium foil
  • Hair straighteners
  • Flat, pointed knife
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton pads
  • Dymo Jnr Label Maker

Step One
We will start with the tricky bit – this involves popping out the plastic insert from your MAC blusher or eyeshadow packaging. Take your knife and carefully slide it under the catch at the front – you will notice that there’s a little slit between the top of the outer packaging and the bottom. If you squeeze your knife in and then use it as a lever, the top section should come apart from the main packaging. Don’t be shy, get right in there and separate the two but do it slowly.

Step Two
Cut a small square of foil. Balance your straighteners so one plate is flat against a surface – use a heat protectant mat if you can.


Step Three
Place the square of foil on the bottom plate. Turn on your straightening irons and allow to heat up, then place your separated blusher/shadow insert on top of the foil. We do this to separate the actual pan out of the packaging, the heat from the irons will melt the glue of the packaging but won’t harm the actual makeup. Once the glue has melted, we can separate the two.

Step Four
Leave the pan on the irons for a few minutes – check every 30 seconds or so. Once it is done you should see a small melted circle in the bottom of the plastic and the metal pan through it. Make sure the plastic is melted enough to push your pan out – if it’s not quite ready, don’t force it and just place your depot back on the heat.
Take your knife and push the pan out of the melted packaging – carefully as it will be very hot. Have a piece of cardboard ready to knock out the depot on to and don’t touch it for some time, it will take time to cool down.


Step Five
If you are using a Z Palette, use rubbing alcohol or acetone to remove the glue. You don’t really have to do this if you are using a MAC palette, they slot in place just fine.

Set Six
Slot your depot in to place. You can either glue the label from the eyeshadow packaging on to the back of the palette or use a label maker to create and stick down your own labels – we find the latter looks cleaner and it’s easier to see what you’re using.

Step Seven
Do this with the rest of your products until your palette is full up – make sure to label each depot as you go so you don’t lose track of shades.

Once you’re done, you can usually Back to MAC any MAC packaging – just another reason to depot your items.

Keep in mind that once you have a palette to fill, you only need to buy the Pro Pan Refills from MAC – so you won’t need to depot any more than what you have now. 

Have you ever depotted your makeup before?

Nouvelle Daily

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Nouvelle Daily

After several years of being immersed in beauty & fashion and contributing our thoughts and feelings to the online community, we realised there wasn't a one stop destination for advice and news, reviews and thoughts, latest collections and launches - as well as home and lifestyle inspiration and ideas.