10 Tips To Help You Prepare For Your Bridal Makeup Trial

Let’s talk about bridal makeup, and more importantly the trial (or trials, depending on how many looks you want to see) leading up to your big day.

Image by Life As Fine Art Photography. Model Kim Gagliardi.

I am a firm believer that your wedding day makeup should be essentially you, but enhanced. I highly recommend choosing a more classic beauty look, as opposed to something that is on-trend and may at some point soon be considered “dated.” You want to look back on your wedding day pictures and recognize your face, not criticize your trendy eyebrows, high-fashion blush, or dramatic smokey eye.

Not that I don’t believe there are brides out there who can rock a magenta lip for their wedding. There certainly are. And it can look so amazing on a particular type of bride! But you need to be able to carry the lipstick with confidence, and own it. If the lipstick is carrying you down the aisle, it’s going to lead you down awkward wedding photos lane. Know your limits.

Here are just a few things to keep in mind for your trial:

  1. Do your research. If you don’t have a clear vision of what you want, it’s going to be difficult for your makeup artist to create it for you. Think about what kind of a look you want. Look on Pinterest or Instagram for inspiration. Narrow down a style or two (or, three!) that you’d like to see. Make sure you have all of your other details picked out – like your dress, flowers, hair style, colors… it will all tie into your day-of makeup styling.
    I want my brides to want to be involved in the crafting of their wedding-day look. I want to see what their style is like, the colors they like, how they wear their everyday makeup. These are all factors makeup artists like to know before you meet for your trial!
  2. What may be ‘—‘ to you, may not be ‘—‘ to someone else. I’ve had three different clients on the same day tell me they wanted “natural” makeup. Each person wanted something different. Be precise with your makeup artist, and make sure you can explain what you’re looking for. Your idea of “natural” may be “Kim Kardashian beauty”, while mine might be light, dewy foundation with minimal, clean eye makeup. Two totally different looks.
  3.  What looks good on one person, may not suit you the same. You may want the heavy contour with high contrast, but your skin may not look good with a lot of heavy product caked on top of it. Those beautifully lush lashes may look great in that picture, but they could be very heavy and unnatural looking for your eye shape.
  4. Shy away from trying extreme makeup techniques for your big day. You want your future hubby to recognize you walking down the aisle, not do a double take and panic that he’s in the wrong venue. If you don’t normally do a dark smokey eye, don’t let your wedding day be your trial. That being said, if you do want to try something new, make sure you do a trial well in advance. That way there are no surprises the day of your wedding!
  5. Sometimes airbrush makeup isn’t for you, and that’s okay. Airbrush makeup is one of my favorite application methods. When done right it can leave the skin flawlessly smooth, with a beautiful ethereal glow in your wedding pictures. But, there are plenty of traditional foundations that have a long-lasting, beautiful stay that may sit nicer on your skin, especially if you tend to be a little more textural. Airbrushing may not give that same flawless finish that it does on someone with clearer skin. Also, it tends to cling to facial hair, making your peach fuzz a little extra fuzzy. If you have an excess of facial hair it may not be the best option for you.
  6. Make sure you have your eyebrows styled the way you would want them for your wedding day! If you’re going to get your face waxed, get it waxed! If you’re in the process of growing in your eyebrows, have the groomed to the best of you ability. Do not come into the trial with an unprepared face!
    If you are getting any facial hair removed, I recommend doing it a few days before the trial and wedding day, just so there’s no redness or irritation from a potential reaction.
  7. Take care of your skin! The key to a beautiful, natural base of makeup, is not just a skilled application, but even more than that is healthy well maintained skin. The more you take care of your skin, the less product you’ll have to put on it to hide the imperfections.
    • There are a lot of health benefits to drinking hot lemon and ginger water first thing when you wake up. It not only helps your digestive system, but it’s also said to help bring life back to your complexion.
    • If you are interested in getting facials, or peels – please, start a regimen sooner rather than later. And, don’t do anything new, or use new skincare products too close to your wedding day. If you have a bad reaction, the last thing you want is blotchy, irritated skin that you’ll need to cover up with extra makeup.
  8. Go lipstick shopping before the trial, and bring with you several shades you like. As extensive as my kit is, I do not own all of the lipsticks, in all of the world, in all of the different shades and textures. Your makeup artist can certainly help you narrow down a color and finish, and if you don’t have a lipstick she can certainly offer you options from her kit. But, I know that I would hate to finish a bridal trial and have my bride unsatisfied with the finished look because I didn’t own the shade that suited her best.
  9. Give feedback! Be honest! If you go home and you don’t like something, tell your makeup artist immediately! And think about ways you would like to change it. Makeup is a huge part of your day, and it should be treated as such. If you’re not happy with your hair or makeup styling the day of, the discomfort will show on your face (and in your pictures!).
    Just because you found things you’d like to adjust from the first trial, does not mean you shouldn’t give your makeup artist another chance. Team work makes the dream work! Sometimes your wedding day makeup will take some fine tuning, and you may need a second trial to do that.
  10. Nail down your makeup look well in advance. Don’t decide that you’re not happy with your trial a week before your wedding. If you know that you’re not 100% satisfied with your trial look, reach out to your makeup artist and set a second trial date as soon as you can. And certainly, don’t decide to do a different makeup the day of your wedding. That’s why we do the trial! To make sure that the makeup will look exactly how you want it!

I hope these tips were helpful! Best of luck to all the future brides tuning in!

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