Mesh Crash Course: Troubleshooting Issues

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

Sometimes things just don’t go as expected when using mesh heads and bodies in Second Life. Here are some of the most common issues:

  1. Skin, makeup or tattoos don’t apply
  2. Skin, makeup or tattoos appear distorted
  3. Eyelashes are clumpy
  4. Skin, makeup, or tattoos are shiny
  5. Makeup or tattoos are faded
  6. Old body parts show through the new mesh body parts
  7. And many, many more…

While all of these things can be very frustrating, thankfully they are usually an easy fix!

Appliers

Some of the most common problems come from trying to use appliers. If you’re not familiar with them make sure to check out our in depth post on how appliers work.

If you’re finding that skin, makeup, or tattoos aren’t showing up at all it can be a few different things. First you’ll want to make sure you’re using the correct appliers. A Catwa applier, for example, won’t apply to a Lelutka head. If you’re using Omega appliers (the “universal” applier) make sure you also have your Omega System Relay Kits on. You may have to click the relays to activate them. For more information on ensuring you have the right applier and how to use appliers please check out Appliers: How Do They Work?

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Mesh Crash Course: Selecting Hands & Feet

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

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!

Main Considerations

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.

Bento vs Standard Hands

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.

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Mesh Crash Course: Selecting A Body

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

Mesh bodies have become extremely popular in Second Life. They offer more realistic curves and higher levels of modification than the classic system avatar bodies. With so many mesh bodies to chose from you may need a hand narrowing it down. Not to worry! Today’s post covers what to look for when researching and demoing potential mesh body purchases.

Main Considerations

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.

Proportions

Some people love fairly realistic avatar bodies. Others love giant booties and chests. Some love small, petite bodies, and still others want to be child sized or feral animals. All of these are possible but work best with different bodies. While many bodies allow for a level of customization there is only so far you can go. Altering shapes too drastically can result in issues with clipping and jagged edges. You’ll want to ensure the body you select will support your own vision. Keep in mind you may have to get separate products (such as third party breasts) for some of the more extreme looks.

For the initial browsing of what body types you may like I highly recommend Mesh Body Addicts. You can browse by gender and quickly get an idea of what style you may prefer. If you’re looking for a child or very petite body you may not find what you’re looking for there. ToddleeDoo is a very popular brand for toddler avatars and UTILIZATOR‘s Kemono is a well loved petite body that works well for anime avatars or petite humans/furries.

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Mesh Crash Course: Selecting A Head

Need more mesh help or info? Check out our full Mesh Crash Course.

Mesh heads are extremely popular due to their smooth, seamless look in comparison to system heads. Whether you’re looking for your first mesh head or your fifth there are a few basics that can help ensure you pick the perfect one for you.

Main Considerations

Of course what is right for others may not be right for you. It always 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 down the options for your personal taste.

Bento vs Static?

One of your biggest choices is if you’d like a bento or static head. I won’t get in too deep as we’ve already covered this, however it’s still important to touch on. The main difference between bento and static heads is the shape customization. Bento heads respond to the shape sliders so you can get various looks with the same head. Static heads don’t respond to the sliders and always have the same shape even if you alter sliders.

Alpha Options

Many people like to use different eyes, ears, or teeth instead of the standards that may come with a purchase. If you’re one of those people (or may be in the future) you’ll want to ensure your head will allow for it. If the head comes with those components you’ll want to make sure they are either equipped separately or can be hidden. Otherwise you will likely run into clipping issues and a weird mix of double features.

If you’re not sure why anyone would want to use something aside from the standards take a peek at this list. I’d hate for you to pick a head that didn’t let you hide ears than decide you wanted to be an elf in a few weeks!

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Bento Heads vs Standard Mesh – What’s Right For You?

While the standard system heads can look nice, many people opt for mesh heads instead. With mesh you have many options, not only based on creator and style, but also in what type of head to get. Both standard and bento mesh heads have their uses. Read on to learn which is more suited to your own personal needs.

Catwa: Vampire Annie (Standard Mesh)

Standard Mesh Heads

Standard mesh heads are great for people who don’t often have the desire to change their base look. What you see is what you get in terms of shape. You can alter the appearance with different skins, but the base itself will not change. Think of using skins like painting a sculpture. The final product will look different depending on the colors and shapes you use but the sculpture itself remains unchanged under the paint. For more information about how much of an impact shapes and skins have on your look check out our informational post.

Standard doesn’t necessarily mean static. While some standard mesh heads don’t move at all, many have movement options. The movement ranges from basic blinking to more in depth expression HUDs allowing for smiling, sticking tongues out, and more.

Bento Heads

Catwa: Lona (Bento Mesh)

Bento mesh heads are a godsend for people who want to switch up their appearance on a regular basis. With bento mesh you can adjust your facial shape with the appearance sliders. This allows for an entirely different base shape as often as you’d like. Combined with the use of skins you can get many different looks with just one purchase. For more information about how much of an impact shapes and skins have on your look check out our informational post.

As with standard heads, bento heads do not have to remain static. Many have in depth animations so you can express your mood through your face. Different brands have different animations so make sure to look into them before purchasing.

Making The Choice

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Pick Your Parts

How you build your basic avatar depends on what you want the outcome to be. Selecting body parts can be a challenging yet rewarding experience! You’ll need the list you made in Part 1 so you know what type of items to buy.


This is part 3 of the 5 part series Making A New You.


Your Basic Avatar – Now In Mesh!

Mesh is the term used to describe 3D objects in Second Life. When using a Mesh avatar you make the base model invisible with an item called an alpha. The game does provide default Mesh avatars that you can build off of, though they are very basic. If you want higher quality you can purchase a body, head, hands, and feet to use instead of the default avatar. Since the defaults are already made for you I’ll assume you’re not reading this guide for those and focus on the other options.

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