Got Cosmetic Questions?
Makeup Artist Answers the Top Inquiries from Brides
By Chantay of In Your Face Makeup Art
s a professional makeup artist who has specialized in weddings for the last five years, I know that brides-to-be are bombarded with choices when it comes to beauty services for the big day. There are so many options—from styles to colors—that it can be a bit overwhelming at first.
For all of you just beginning to wade through the sea of possibilities, I asked a few of my recent bridal clients to share their top makeup questions.
Q: Which makeup style is right for me?
A: The possibilities for makeup shades, styles, and combinations are nearly infinite, so choosing one look for such an important day can seem impossible. To help narrow it down, first consider what your everyday makeup style is. This gives you a baseline to start from. Most ladies want to look more glamorous on the wedding day than on an average day, so it makes sense that someone who wears a fully made face every day may want a bolder look for her wedding than someone who normally just wears mascara and lip gloss. Next, consider the style and time of your wedding ceremony. If your wedding is a black-tie, evening affair, then a dramatic makeup look may be more suited than a soft, natural one.
Q: Should I incorporate a trendy makeup look or stay classic?
A: Every year and season usher in a new batch of colors and styles that become the defining look of the times before they are replaced a few months later. So ponder whether you want to add trendy colors and makeup techniques or if a timeless, classic look is what you’ll be glad you chose when you’re reminiscing over your bridal portraits 10 years from now. Many brides choose a makeup artist to help them with these decisions.
I met Caroline as she was preparing for her 2020 wedding at Glencliff Manor in Rustburg, and she told me, “I want to look like me, just the very best version!” That is absolutely the most popular request I receive from brides every year. Many ladies have confessed to me their fear of being transformed into someone unrecognizable. No bride wants her groom to look confused when he sees her walking down the aisle. When the goal is a beautiful, blended, properly accentuated version of you, the last thing you want is a makeup mask that makes you look like someone else. It is a makeup artist’s priority to make sure each bride she works with looks the way she dreams of on her wedding day.
Q: Do I have to hire a pro or can I go DIY?
A: First and foremost, if you are on the fence about a DIY approach or hiring a pro, give both a practice run and compare your results. It also may help to ask the opinion of your wedding photographer or other seasoned wedding pro who has seen it all. Lindsey Hinkley is a popular photographer in the Lynchburg area: “In my experience, having their makeup professionally done can make the difference between brides just liking their images and truly loving the finished product,” she says.
Q: How do I find the right makeup artist for me?
A: First, do some homework. Ask for referrals from your venue or from friends who had great experiences with their wedding makeup and then take it a step further and scan reviews online. A fun part of this reconnaissance work is browsing an artist’s photo gallery. It’s a great way to see their work for previous clients and find ideas you would like for your own wedding makeup. Look for a wide range of makeup styles to be represented. It’s important to see that an artist can execute a variety of requests, not just a one-size-fits-all approach. When you do contact your potential artists, don’t be shy about asking lots of questions besides the usual pricing inquiries. At the top of the list should be a request for an artist’s background, training, and especially certifications or licensing.
Q: Do I really need to schedule a trial run?
A: A trial run is very important to help you confirm you’ve chosen the best makeup artist, including making sure they are following all sanitization requirements. (You don’t want any surprise breakouts or eye infections on your honeymoon.) Also, the trial run is the perfect opportunity to meet with your artist on a more relaxed day to discuss your ideas and experience everything as you would like it on your actual wedding day. When reflecting back on their weddings, brides consistently say that the trial run made them feel at ease. “So important!” says Danielle, who was married in 2020 at Old Mill Farm. “It took the stress away!”
When scheduling a trial run, Brandi Stinnett, hairstylist and owner at Color Contour Salon in Wyndhurst, suggests planning one with your hair stylist and makeup artist on the same day. “So you can see everything from the shoulders up exactly as it will be on the wedding day,” she says.
A trial run also is your chance to try anything outside your normal makeup routine (smoky eye or bold lashes) that you think you might want, since the big day itself isn’t the best time to experiment.
Q: How do I know my makeup will last all day?
A: This is again why a trial run is so important! Be sure to schedule your trial appointment before lunch and leave the makeup on until bedtime so you can see how well it wears. Wedding days are long and busy, sometimes hot or even rainy, and there will be photos taken until late in the evening. It’s a tall order for regular cosmetics to hold up to these types of conditions and expectations. This is why it could be more budget savvy, in the long run, to book a professional. After Sophie was married at Glencliff Manor in Rustburg in August 2020, she said in an online review: “My makeup lasted the entire day and this was August! No sweat, no smears, no caking… it worked and lasted!” It takes specific products to deliver results like that, and professional cosmetics are a big investment. Buying them for one special day doesn’t make sense for most brides.