Wednesday, 19 February 2014

DIY: Depotting Lipstick

Removing a product from it's original package and placing it into much more practical packaging.

I'm a sucker for pretty packaging so initially the idea of ripping apart my products didn't seem like something that I was interested in doing.  Makeup is a hobby for me so I have no need for a "kit" and I have a manageable amount of makeup so storage is not really an issue (yet). 

Anyway, despite all this I decided one day that keeping my lipstick in my bra while working was a smart idea (it wasn't- I work in a kitchen) aaaaand it melted into an unusable mess.  Wah.  So here I am, reporting back from my first "depotting adventure". 

MAC "Lady Bug" A72
  1. Lipstick
  2. Sample pot or palette
  3. Spoon
  4. Toothpick
  5. Candle

I wish I had taken step-by-step photos of the process but I got too excited and forgot (woops) but don't worry- it was incredibly easy.

The Process:
I started out by using my spoon to cut off what was left of my lipstick bullet and then going back in with a toothpick (or any other small tool) to dig out what was left and unreachable in the tube.  I really mean dig- there's an alarming amount of product in the tube beneath the surface and by doing it this way you'll get more product into your pot than what you would have been able to use in it's original bullet form.  Next- hold your spoon full of lipstick a safe distance away from my lit candle and it will melt gradually.  It's important to be careful not to burn the spoon or the product because I read that overheating may alter it.  Once your lipstick reaches a smooth liquid consistency carefully pour it into your new container or palette.  You could stop here; however, my final step was to warm up the label on the bottom of the tube just enough to carefully peel it off and place it on the bottom of my new container. Voila!

Since, I only had one lipstick that I needed/wanted to de/repot and I only had about half the product left I went to my local MAC store and asked if I could have a small sample container- the ones they would give you if you wanted to try a small amount of any liquid product.  It fit perfectly for the amount of lipstick I had but I believe this container would have been too small for a brand new tube. The best part about this option is if you ask nicely most associates should have no problem giving you one for free.  Sephora also has similar small sample containers that you could use but I preferred the look of the MAC one.

Additionally, if you're interested in melting more than one lipstick (or even newer/less used lipsticks) but aren't interested in creating a palette-  MAC sells stackable travel jars for around $10CDN that can be easily labelled and screwed together making it easy to keep your depotted lipsticks organized. A definite pro to having your lipsticks melted into a pot is that they're clear it makes it easy to identify which color you're reaching for without having to open lipstick after lipstick.

The Conclusion:
After my experience I must say... It was a lot of fun! I'll admit if I were creating a palette and wanted to melt 25-50 lipsticks at once I would want try another (probably quicker) method.  I've seen palettes you can get that are microwavable so you simply crush your lipsticks and then pop them in the microwave for a smooth/ clean finish. I know some people prefer not to melt the product in fear that it will alter the formula.  Luckily, this didn't happen to me.

I felt just like a scientist.  Or Walt Whitman from Breaking Bad.  And its so cute. Lil' baby lipstick. 

The only con to my cute little pot of "Lady Bug" is that now in order to apply it I'll need a lip brush (preferably with a cap so it can stay clean and travel friendly).



  1. this process seems so tricky, an interesting post i'm looking forward to the next one

    Jorden xx

    1. Thanks for reading! I was nervous at first but it was actually really easy :-)