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44 Comments

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Depends.
*DS- functional, efficient, and sturdy
*ME-all of the above, and some pretty designs/colors, some embossing
*HE-all of the above plus more – fancy embossing & lettering (Dior spring shadow sets), packaging is high quality and has heft, can look like a piece of art (Louboutin lipsticks). IMO Guerlain often sets the standard, their packaging is always gorgeous and luxurious (Meteorites, Rouge G) even if some of their products are hit or miss (shadows)

Profile photo of Áine

Sturdy, sleek, and lately, easy to open. I’ve always had joint problems but unfortunately my hands have gotten much worse in the past 6 months or so. Stubborn clasps on compacts, and screw-on tops that are supposed to be very tight (looking at you, Colour Pop) are hard to handle when your hands are really painful.

Profile photo of Alexa

lol, I have a list!

LIPSTICKS THAT STAY CLOSED! I cannot for the life of me find a bullet lipstick that stays closed in a zipped pocket in my purse. Doesn’t matter if it’s Wet n Wild or Kat Von D, they always come open.

I also like things that look nice enough to display. If I’m spending $$$ on a product, I don’t want to hate displaying it because it looks cheap and tacky.

The other thing I like is products like lipsticks/brow pencils/lip pencils that twist up and down all the way. I sometimes get hand tremors/shaky hands, so I like being able to put the product all the way down to avoid taking off a chunk of product if my hands shake.

The last thing is products that aren’t incredibly hard to open. I get a lot of joint pain and swelling, which can make opening some difficult compacts too painful or impossible. If something comes open without making me wince in extra pain, that’s an A+.

Hi Alexa, ÁIne,

I also have hand/joint issues; specifically severe osteoarthritis in both hands. I do want packaging that closes securely, but it needs to be designed in such a any that I can easily open it. Funnily enough, I also hear complaints from some of my friends who have long nails. Sometimes the opening aparatus is so small or tight, they risk breaking or chipping a nail whenever they use the product. I understand the design team might be going for something ultra sleek in look, but they should still factor in ease of opening.

Count me in the club, too!

One lipstick I love is Estee Lauder Envy line which has a magnetic cap, that actually stays closed in the handbag, and is easy to twist. Gorgeous colors as well.

OXO makes openers for ppl with hand problems. Many different selections. In the U.S.,the sell in Target, eMbed, Bath, and beyond has a very large selection. Amazon has most things too
I also wrap hair plastics around compacts and palettes and keep them in a zip lock freezer bag while traveling, just in case. If you can get a physical therapy band, cut it to a few sizes to help your grip. I have bad hands too.

Profile photo of Pearl

Sturdy, classic and luxe ( Tom Ford) and if not luxe, then at least sleek and minimal froo froo (i.e. MAC standard black packaging or NARS). And I prefer plastic over dressed up cardboard.

I don’t love overly gimmicky packaging (the Too Faced holiday sets stress me out). I mostly look for packaging that accommodates normal usage of the product. Lids should stay shut, and hinges should withstand opening and closing until the product is used up. Cardboard packaging is mostly useless to me.

Profile photo of Nancy T

While I may like some kick-butt cool packaging on a special LE or Luxury item, I know may not be practical for my everyday items. When it comes to foundation, blush, eyebrow products, mascara and such, I just want it to utilitarian. Easy to use, built well to protect its contents and take daily wear and tear. Nothing complicated or fancy.

Agree with you completely. I do not care much about the cuteness of packagings . I rather look forward to something which would keep the dust and air out and be sturdy enough to carry and use.

I’m very picky when it comes to packaging, I might even pass up on a product if the packaging isn’t what I was looking for. I rarely take my products with me so packaging doesn’t need to be sturdy, it just needs to be compact because I don’t like bulky packaging. My space is very limited so I usually go for palettes that are compact and not too bulky. I also don’t like packaging that gets dirty easily like NARS has, I want everything to look clean.

Profile photo of Julia

Something sturdy and substantial, that I can open easily without tearing up my poor little nails. Secure for travel is always a plus but not absolutely necessary.

I really hate it when companies waste space in palettes, too – for example, the Kevyn Aucoin Contour Book. It’s not very much product and that’s fine, but the space between the pans is so much that I can’t fit the palette in my “palette drawer” even though it’s probably got less in it than anything else in there!

Profile photo of Fran

Definitely sturdy and easy to use, for starters; compact and streamlined; not heavy (I know some people like products to have heft, but a lot of hefty products put together equals one massively heavy bag); easy to stack and store — if there’s something cool about the design, and that is a nice added bonus, I’d prefer something cleverly compact, or that shows off on the outside the colors on the inside, over a shape that takes up unnecessary space.

Profile photo of Wwendy

FUNCTION OVER FORM. I have some really lovely compacts that drive me beserk (that beautiful TF white palette from last summer). I have autoimmune arthritis and my hands have difficulties with certain tasks…especially movements that require pinching/grasping between the thumb and forefinger.. Well, I struggle to get that beautiful sucker open which sometimes prevents me from using it.

Profile photo of Cat

Yes, that compact can be difficult to open. Now, I hold my left thumb against the bottom of the compact and use my right thumb to push up at the center. That palette also has a lot of wasted space. I would have rather had the products spaced out a little more than to have all of that extra space around the sides. =(

Something solid but pretty. I think Guerlain and YSL have the prettiest lipstick packaging. I love Kat Von D Studded Kiss lipstick but I have two tubes where the cap won’t stay on. Great lipstick…terrible packaging.

Profile photo of Celia

Number one is strength and durability. Especially when it comes to lipsticks, since finding one open in your purse is a disaster. Magnetic closures like the NARS Audacious system are the very best since I know they’re not coming apart in my stage kit or my bag and I never worry over losing a cap. If a product has to go into my traincase for work and come backstage with me, it has to be able to withstand tough conditions. Palettes should be sturdy, resistant to drop damage, and open/close securely and easily. Ideally they have useful mirrors (so glad Z Palette is finally releasing mirrored versions!!).

I’d rather packaging be heavy than light for my own personal hand-feel preference and the aforementioned constant moving around in kits. I like things to stay where I put them but without unnecessary bulk or excess packaging (Marc Jacobs lipsticks, for example, are a pain to store because they’re too big for most lipstick holders. Yes, it’s a nice shape but it’s not the shape of storage). With shadows, I want compacts that close very securely or jars that have strong threading to hold caps. Or I want them magnetized so they’re easy to put into a custom. Lipsticks should readily fit into most holders on the market.

Basically I want packaging to open and close easily and securely, have enough sturdiness and weight to function without adding excess bulk or being difficult/inconvenient to store, and is resistant to damage both from major drops and regular wear-and-tear over time. I love beautiful packaging and it can be a wonderful benefit, but only if it’s functional. Of course a giant piece of intricate and delicate beauty can have its place on a vanity and I love that too, but functional is best.

Profile photo of Rachel R.

Packaging that is functional, and that won’t break or pop open in my purse/makeup bag. I’m much more forgiving of inexpensive products, especially if I can de-pot them. Higher end stuff should be sturdy, well-made, and at least somewhat attractive. Extra points for being recyclable, made from recycled materials, really pretty or cute packaging/embossing/little touches, or being a collectible I like (ex. : Unicorns, fantasy, Alice in Wonderland, etc.).

I agree with you Christine. Also I admit if its pink and cute I will be more likely to buy it. I do try to read reviews first though.

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