Along with the perfect kit bag (more on that soon) finding the perfect set bag is somewhat of the holy grail for makeup artists. Ive been through too many to count, as someone who takes my organisation very seriously there’s no stone I will leave unturned so to speak. We all have different preferences but I’ve come to the conclusion that I like mine small to medium in size so that it doesn’t become over whelming. I like multiple pockets but I’m not too keen on the totally see through ones where you can see absolutely everything in sight, although I know a a lot of people choose those bags for that reason because its quicker, but for me I still found myself fumbling around a lot not being able to find quickly what I need. A great set bag should keep you organised and help you find the things you’re looking for quickly, after spending way too much money on them myself, I thought I’d round up my current top 5!
Use an existing bag and add Muji Containers inside
A lot of my Mua friends do this and its a great option when you want to be a bit more incognito. The situations where I’m working with celebrities and we are out and about filming/shooting on location trying not to draw attention towards us this is the perfect solution as you can do this with pretty any bag from a messenger style to a Fannypack. The Muji PP Makeup Box has 6 Slots, and is a lightweight yet durable plastic holder that easily divides your products/brushes into neat little sections, and avoids you bringing too much. This is also a great option if you are working with an actor and you only need one of two essentials for touch ups or your larger main kit as close by.
Vivian Baker Set Bag
I bought this bag after seeing it do the rounds on Instagram and its the Vivan Baker Set Bag for The Makeup Light. Firstly you can tell this is made by a makeup artist with mua’s in mind because its so incredibly well thought out. Its black on the outside so again great for being that little bit more discreet when you’re on location with a client, but its has reflective panels which is great if you are working on a lot of night/low light shoots. This can be worn so many ways including cross body and around your waiste which has been my preferred way of wearing it. Its all in the details with this bag, from light coloured waterproof material so its easy to see inside, roomy yet light and all the pocket organisation an mua could dream of. I’m saving the best bit for last though as the front pocket is what makes it so genius in that you can open it at an angle to reveal all your organised products and nothing falls out.
My Kit Co My Big Brush Buddy
My Kit co creates some of the best makeup storage and organisational tools out there, which is no surprise because it has the genius of makeup artist James Malloy behind it. My Big Brush Buddy makes a great medium size set bag, and I like that this has a cover to seal it thats clear so you can easily see inside it but its no too overwhelming.It fits cross body which I love and you can also team it up with the My Brush Buddy Base if you want to have different ways to use, and multiple set ups. I love that you can really customise the various components to make your dream set up.
Z Palette Traveler Set Bag
The Z Palette Traveler is perfect for those days when you need to house a lot of products and perhaps of multiple talent you’re looking after. This is also really multifunctional and a nice option when you need something that can be sealed when you’re on location and weather proof but also the lid can be removed fully for when you’re in the studio or prefer to access your makeup quickly. There’s multiple pockets around the outside for brushes and products but I like that because of the flat base you could also easily add more inserts like the Muji one above to create even more organisation.
Ok so this one isn’t a specific recommendation but I have to say some of the best set bags I come across when I’m with hair stylists or other makeup artists at press junkets etc are often from camera shops. Even Home Depot and belt bags made for builders etc can be great when used as set bags. Camera bags in particular though are great because they tend t0 have excellent padding so your products are protected in addition to lots of great compartments. They often also tend to have velcro dividers so it enables you to choose how much organising you want plus you custom how you want it to work for you.
That’s my top 5 recommendations, we all know by this time next year they’ll be several others I’ve tried and tested I’m sure but until then I feel confident that these will serve you well. Let me know if you’ve found the perfect set bag and if you’ve tried any of the above. Click here to get your free set bag checklist (as well as a ton of other useful tools and resources)
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