PanPastels are one of my favorite art materials. I love their intense colors and rich tonal range. The only problem is they shatter easily – and they’re not cheap to replace. Lately I’ve been wondering if it’s possible to fix broken PanPastels.
First I contacted PanPastel to ask them if there was a way to fix them. Their “official” answer was no. However, after more research I came up with an “unofficial” solution, or hack, if you will. Essentially I’m using a popular technique for fixing compact face powder or eye shadow
Here is what I did, step by step:
You’ll need: Rubbing Alcohol, a spoon, a rounded knife, a jar or other item with a smooth flat surface, a zip-lock bag, a tissue and paper towels.
Remove the broken pieces of PanPastel and place them in the zip-lock bag. Leave any solid unbroken PanPastel in the original pan.
Use the bottom of the spoon to crush the PanPastel pieces into a powder.
Carefully pour the powdered PanPastel back in the original pan.
Add rubbing alcohol to the PanPastel, using the cap of the alcohol bottle. The amount of alcohol depends on how much pastel you have. The goal here is to moisten the PanPastel to the consistency of very thick cake icing.
Use the knife to blend the powdered PanPastel with the rubbing alcohol.
Clean the edges of the pan with a damp paper towel. Let the PanPastel dry for about 1 hour.
After your PanPastel has dried for an hour or so, place a tissue over the top of the pan and use your smooth object to gently press the pastel into the pan. Here I’m using the tamper from my espresso machine, but a jar cover or the bottom of a glass will work too. Carefully remove the tissue & let the PanPastel dry for at least 24 hours before using.
And here it is, almost as good as new! Let me know if you try this.
maybe a sprayer on top and then pressed would work?
Thank you so much for this. I just received two Pan Pastels that FedEx spent a full week kicking around, and they are dust. I hope I can salvage them.
I had the same experience (no packing materials and they bounced around the box) and sent them back. I wish I’d had this advice then.
I hope Pan Pastel learns how to pack them better.
So the pigment wont be affected in anyway possible? Hope it dosent affect the quality of the material ☹️
Hi Jullian, It’s not a perfect solution. It won’t make them exactly like new. However, if your PanPastels are broken, this is a way I’ve found to make them usable again. I’ve not noticed a change in pigment.
Kayleigh Barlow says
I have ordered supplies, including rubbing alcohol, round dishes and soft pastels. I am going to try and create my own pan pastels, as they are a tad too expensive for me!
Thankyou for the inspiration 🙂
I’ve never tried to make pan pastels. Let me know how it goes.
Sue leatherdAle says
Thank you for this. I have a number of broken palates from Pan Pastel US. Query… if this fixes them would it be possible to fuse together shavings from sharpened pastel pencils, I wonder..????
Hi Sue, I’m glad this is helpful to you. Not sure if it would work for pastel pencils.
char Leasor says
Thank you so much. Fun Stampers Journey began carrying Pan Pastels last year but are sold in sets. When one is busted that is a problem. Thank you for sharing this fix!!!!!
Ellie Knol says
We don’t have that type of alcohol in Holland.. would normal alcohol work as well?
I assume it would work, however I don’t really know what the difference is between alcohol in Holland & the US.
Ellie Knol says
thanks.. haven’t tried it yet, but will surely.. came across this again..
Chris Dann says
Try Jenever, it is about 50%, but isopropyl alcohol would need to be purchased from apotheek.
Thanks Beverly, this is cool!
You’re welcome Sigrid. I hope this helps you fix your broken PanPastels.
Thanks so much! A friend shared this with me! I need it for a couple that are broken. Now, I look forward to fixing them!
You’re welcome, Angela! I’m glad you found this helpful.
Thank you so much for this technique! I just bought another set of PanPastels and it came with 2 broken pans 🙁
So, I am wondering how your repaired panPanPastel has performed, now that you have had a few months to use it.
Thank you for any insights 🙂
Thanks for writing. I’ve found the repaired PanPastel to be almost as good as new – slightly less powdery than the original. However, if your PanPastels arrived broken, I think the retailer you bought them from should replace them.
Thank you Beverly. Actually, this was the 3rd time I ordered them from Amazon-1st time they sent the wrong color set; 2nd and 3rd time they were broken. I got tired of having to re-order so just asked them to provide a partial refund. I thought worst case I could just purchase the two broken colors separately . Thanks again for the technique and feedback 🙂
What a hassle to have to keep re-ordering! Hope this repair technique works for you.
I wonder if this would work with broken makeup as well? As long as the alcohol dries, the eye shadows and powder blushes of the world could be useful again. Thanks!
Thanks for commenting! Yes, it’s based on a technique for fixing broken makeup. See the last sentence in paragraph two.