Mesh Crash Course: Selecting A Head

Note: While the images are from 2017 products, the content has been reviewed and is up to date as of July 2020.
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. Bento heads can work with bento animations, even from third party creators. Static heads are more limited and will not change with bento animations, but instead rely on the HUDs from their developer.

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?

Note: While the images in this blog post are from 2017, the content has been reviewed and updated for 2020.
This post is currently in the process of being updated. Please bear in mind the info presented may be out of date. A more in depth version is coming soon!

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 a bit out of date now that bento has been out for a while. 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. Standard mesh heads won’t move with bento AOs or poses, however. They’ll only move with whatever HUDs are made for that specific head.

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. Now that bento has been out for a while, bento animations are widely available. Companies like Vista can animate your bento face as part of their AOs.

Making The Choice

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