Skin Selection

by Artell in Addons

What is Skin Selection?

Skin Selection is a Blender addon to select bones controllers intuitively, by clicking the mesh surface. 

Compatible with any rig/armature.

Check the video demo to use it: for Blender 2.8x or Blender 2.79

Important remarks/ known issues, please note that:

  • Selection can be wrong in ortho mode, switch to perspective mode (numpad key 5)
  • With mirror modifiers, the name of the bones controllers must end with a two characters side, eg: "hand.l" or "hand_L" for left, "hand.r" or hand_R" for right side.
  • If multiple bones are included in the vertex group, they must be from the same side
  • Selection highlight backface culling doesn't work properly with Blender 2.9x versions
  • Performances are generally fine for models made of ~25.000 polys. However with surface subdivision turned on, bone selection may be slower. Use Subsurf's open subdiv feature for better performances (Blender 2.79 only for now)


1)Create the vertex groups:

  • Under the Vertex Groups Creation label, add up to three bone controllers.
  • Click Create VGroup. A corresponding vertex group is added. The group are easily recognizable with the fs:" prefix for "face selection" vertex groups.
  • Assign the faces/vertices for this vertex group.
  • Optionally if the group is from the right or left side, click Mirror Selected VGroup to mirror it on the other side.

2)Display options:

  • Optionally change the display parameter: color, alpha...

3)Click Start! 

  • Only the meshes will be displayed.

4)Click an area on the mesh to select the associated controller. 

  • Click to select the first mapped controller, hold Shift for the second, and Alt for the third.

5)Press escape key or the Stop button to go back to the normal mode.

Release log:


  • Blender 4.0 support, fix incompatibilities


  • New option "Stop with Escape key" to stop Skin Selection with the Escape key optionally
  • New option "Keep Highlights" to keep on showing polygons highlighting after the bone selection when rotating, translating the bone.
  • Reorganized the interface with drawers (arrow icons to expand or collapse the UI)
  • Automatically rebuild mesh cache on topology changes

  • Fixed multiple armature switch and selection
  • Blender 2.91 fixes
  • Fix error when the armature pointer is lost
  • Fixed text display glitch with Blender 2.9x versions
  • Fixed proxy compatibility with Blender 2.9x versions


  • Improved cache performance, up to 4 time faster


  • Add Auto-Backface cull option to hide backface of highlighted faces


  • Update to Blender 2.8
  • New face highlighting based on custom OpenGL shaders
  • Caching function to store the meshes data
  • Text label showing the name of the bone
  • Multiple selection implemented: the modifier key that is not used for the 2nd and 3rd input is used as multiple selection key (shift, alt or ctrl).


  • Better performances when Subsurf is enabled


  • Subsurf simplification was reset to 0 in some cases
  • Face index error
  • Mac platforms does not support Open Subdiv yet


  • Tooltips text changes


  • Shortcuts to select the second and third controller can be user defined, between alt, ctrl and shift.
  • The error popping when the second or third controllers are not set can be disabled.


Skin selection release!

Sales 500+
Customer Ratings 7
Average Rating
Dev Fund Contributor
Published over 6 years ago
Blender Version 4.0, 3.6, 3.5, 3.4, 3.3, 3.2, 3.1, 3.0, 2.93, 2.92, 2.91, 2.9, 2.83, 2.82, 2.81, 2.8, 2.79
License GPL
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