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Mesh hands and feet are a popular option for users with all types of avatars. For somebody who goes full mesh it’s a no brainer. Many system avatars also enjoy mesh hands or feet for various reasons including bento hand capability and a larger selection of shoes. If you have a mesh body it may have come with hands and feet already and generally those are the ones that will work the best for the body. That doesn’t mean you can’t mix and match with other brands if you so desire!
As always you must remember that what is right for others may not be right for you. It comes down to your own needs and preferences. There are a few things to consider when demoing (yes, you should be using demos) and narrowing the options for your personal taste.
As we already have a whole post devoted to this topic I’ll keep this section brief. Bento hands allow for individual finger movements and standard hands can only stay in one shape. Many people prefer bento so they can make peace signs, hold cigarettes, wiggle their fingers, and more. If these options aren’t important to you the standard mesh hands are also an option. Please note that while there are plenty of accessories for standard mesh hands the options for bento hands are increasing every day.
Alpha sections offer more versatility for hands. They allow you to make certain sections of the wrist entirely invisible. This is perfect for remedying potential clipping between your wrist and long sleeved mesh clothing. Not all mesh hands come with alpha layers. For the most part you won’t use alph layers on hands as much as you would on mesh bodies, but if you wear lots of tight mesh products around the wrist and lower forearm you may want to look into the alpha options.
I’m not aware of any feet with alpha options at the moment, however I will say that I haven’t run into any issues where I’d need alpha sections. On rare occasions my feet may clip through boots though in those cases I can just remove the feet entirely.
Whether you’re just purchasing new hands/feet or you’re redoing your entire avatar you’ll need to make sure your purchase is compatible with the other products you’ll be using.
Skins, tattoos, gloves, nail polish, and socks are put on via objects called appliers. You’ll want to make sure your body parts are compatible with the appliers you want to use. Skins are especially important since you’ll want to know they match your body. Double check the skin you’ll be using just to be confident it’s compatible with your hands, feet, body, and head before making a purchase. Please note that system skins won’t show on your mesh parts and applier skins won’t show up on non mesh parts.
Not all appliers work with all mesh. You have to make sure you know what appliers will work with your body. Some brands have their own appliers, such as Maitreya and Slink. Designers can make appliers specifically for these bodies and they won’t work on other bodies. The most common applier is Omega. Many bodies are Omega compatible and can use any Omega appliers with the help of a third party relay. For more info on Omega and how to use it check out the Popular Applier Types section of our Appliers post.
There are so many bodies, heads, hands, and feet out there and no set standard for how they should fit together. This applies whether you’re using a mesh body or a system body. If your body and hands/feet don’t match it can be very obvious. Make sure that whatever hands or feet you purchase blend into the body around the wrists or ankles. Most mesh parts come with HUDs that will allow you to alter the product to match various body types. Make sure there are no distracting gaps before purchasing.
Some bodies come with hands and feet such as Maitreya’s Lara. Slink bodies do not come with hands and feet however there are hands and feet specifically made for them. When mesh body parts are made to match you have a clean fit and HUD options that match one another. Included skins, shine options, etc. will usually play nice with products that are made to be used together.
Shoes, Nails, and More
There are many mesh body parts and clothing you may want to use in addition to your hands or feet. Shoes, nails, gloves, and rings are all popular items that may or may not work with the products you’ve selected. Make sure to try on anything you know you want to wear when demoing your new mesh parts. It’s never a fun feeling to buy the wrong feet for the adorable shoes you just bought.
Other Things To Consider
In HUD Customization
Many mesh products have extensive HUDs that give you a ton of different options. These options range from tinting (altering colors of applied textures) to included tattoos or skins to texture shininess. Make sure to explore all areas of the HUD so you know exactly what you’re getting. Many hands have options for nails or posing. It may seem overwhelming at first, but learning every little part of your potential new body parts prevents accidentally passing up on a really cool feature you may have otherwise missed.
Different hands and feet come with different things. Make sure to know what you’re getting so you don’t have any unhappy surprises! Common things to look for are HUDs and nails. In the HUDs keep an eye out for things like nail lengths/colors, skins, tattoos, and bento poses/animations. Informational notecards will help you get started with your new look as well. Make sure to check out everything that comes with your hands and/or feet so you know all your options.