On Bridal Makeup

Bridal makeup is something that every makeup artist must master. It's the ability to enhance and highlight the bride's features while keeping the makeup looking natural, glowy, and glamorous. It has to be understated but also be the best looking face of the day.

For my most recent makeup class, we worked on makeup for the bride, mother of the bride, and a bridesmaid. My first question was how bridal makeup was any different from regular, pretty makeup. The difference was the flawless look. For weddings and other events that will be highly photographed and watched, makeup can't just be regular. It has be HD makeup. Throughout the entire class, my teacher would say "No pores! I don't want to see any pores!" 



My bride model, Pia, requested a subtle glamorous look for a late afternoon/evening wedding. She wanted to work with pink and brown tones and keep her lips muted. I started with her eyes, giving her a simple brown smokey eyes with gentle pink shimmer around the center and inner corner of her eyes to make them pop. Since her lashes were quite short, I gave her lengthy lashes to give them even more emphasis. Her brows were a bit of a challenge for me. She had thick, unshaped brows and I was hesitant to mess around with them. So I opted to use some concealer, highlight under the arch, and a brow pencil to create shape. For her skin, I gave her basic skincare before using concealer, light layers on foundation, and setting with powder. She already had great skin so it was relatively easy to work with. Her contour is soft and blended in with her blush to make it look more natural. Her lips were the last step. I used a deep rose shade instead of red so it wouldn't look too stark and garish against the softness of the rest of her makeup. 


Mother of the Bride 

My MOB model, EJ, had amazing features and I decided to give her a very simple, daytime look. For her eyes, I used matte browns and bronze shimmer to complement her skin tone and brighten her eyes. Initially, I didn't apply any eyeliner but at my teacher's request, I added a subtle line and smoked it out for a look that can go from day to night. For her eyebrows, I used a brown eye shadow and a brow brush to shape and fill in her sparse brows. For her skin, I used concealer under her eyes and around her chin then applied a sheer layer of foundation. With her skin, she didn't need much and I avoided using too much liquid or powder so it wouldn't settle into any creases or wrinkled. Remember, cream based products are best for older skin! For her lips, I initially used a semi-sheer muted pink balm that gave the whole look a very fresh finish but my teacher requested I give it an edge. So we chose a deeper rose shade and layer it with bronze eye shadow. 



For my 15 year old bridesmaid model, I wanted to keep it as fresh and subdued as possible since I hate when makeup ends up aging teens. For her eyes, I used various shades of pink and dusty rose and smoked them out towards her brows. I added thin eyeliner to her top lashline just to give it a bit more oomph then added mascara, no falsies. For her brows, all I did was clean them a bit with a razor but no products were added. For her skin, I used a little concealer, sheer foundation, and warm contour to highlight her youth. For her lips, I used a sheer pink-ish balm. 


Tips & Tricks for Bridal Makeup

  • For the mother of the bride and anyone older with saggy skin, avoid powder and instead use cream-based powder 
  • Everything should be waterproof!
  • For brides, use food tones (cream, caramel, toffee) and earth tones (brown, taupe, bronze) 
  • Touch up bag essentials: blotting paper/film, a wedge sponge, lipstick + lipstick brush, powder, Q-tips, 
  • Avoid sticky lip glosses, red or deep pink blushes, and dark/grey makeup 
  • Use a primer for face and eyeshadow! 
  • Cream blush looks more natural than powder blush 
  • Remember that you're wearing white and the makeup needs to compensate
  • Apply and view makeup under natural light. What looks good in natural light will usually look good under artificial light. 
  • Stay away from trends like structured Instagram brows, overdrawn Kylie Jenner lips, glitter liner, and heavy, full lashes. While they may be on trend and modern now, they may look dated years from now. I would recommended sticking to someone more classic. 
  • Makeup shouldn't stop at the face. Include the neck and shoulders so everything looks even. (note: keep foundation away from the dress though! You don't want foundation stains on the wedding dress)
  • Avoid neutral, brown lipsticks since they can wash you out especially in photos. Try reds, plums, wines, or pinks! 
  • Blend, blend, BLEND! 

What do you think of the makeup looks?