Thursday, 22 November 2007

Do you REALLY need a make-up artist for your wedding?

Finding the right make-up artist for your wedding can be such a hassle! What do you go on - friend's recommendations? a name you've heard of? the person with the biggest airbrushed ad in the magazines? or do you just risk it and try out someone you found online?

Thing is, make-up artists can be expensive, the average rate for JUST a make-up trial is £40. With prices like that I can see why some brides settle for the first artist they find.

Here's a true story for you - my sister had her make-up trial, I recommended the beautician who at the time did my eyebrows. The trial went really well, this lady had a nice professional salon and we were happy to book. We even payed extra for the artist and her team to come to our house to make us up.
On the day of the wedding, not only did she turn up 2 hours late, she had a cold and I'm sure we all caught it off her. The make-up looked NOTHING like the trial and she couldn't even put my sister's lipstick on straight!!
Looking back, we should have complained cause we weren't happy with the service she'd provided, but it was the wedding day, the house was full of guests and frankly we didn't have the time or the energy to deal with this woman. Needless to say I don't go there to get my eyebrows done anymore!

I'm not bad-mouthing all make-up artists, but here's 3 reasons why I'm weary of them:

1. They're expensive, and that's before you've even decided to book
2. They can be unreliable, you don't need to be worrying if your make-up artist is gonna show up on time
3. The "good" ones are in demand, if your make-up artist is doing 3 or more brides in one day don't you think she's gonna rush and you might not get the best service?

Here's an idea -why not do your OWN bridal make-up?

Ok, that might sound ridiculous at first, you're not a trained professional, there's no way you can make yourself up asian-bride-style! But hear me out on this one :)

You know your own skin don't you? You put make-up on yourself every day. You know which products don't work for you, and more importantly which products DO work for you. You've also go the basic skills, like being able to put mascara on without poking your eyes out, or applying lipstick without getting most of it on your teeth!!
All you need to transform your everyday make-up to bridal make-up is the tools and some advice.

Go to your favourite make-up counter in the department stores, make an appointment, take a fabric swatch of your wedding outfit, and then tell them what you want!

You want:
- products to make your make-up last all day eg. a good primer
- colours to match your outfit
- ask what to apply first
- ask about the best way to apply each product
- ask about re-touching after the initial application

See the thing about make-up counter staff in shops, they're main objective isn't to become your personal make-up artist, they just want to sell you products, so ask as many questions as you want, take notes if you have to! I'm sure they'll be happy to help you! If you're happy with the products, buy them, then go home and practice practice practice.

You probably won't get it right first time, but you'll get there eventually, there's even books if you still need tips.

Well, you've heard me out, what do you think? I admit, it all sounds like a lot of hassle doesn't it? But rather than have the stress of "what am I gonna look like? what if my make-up artist is rubbish? what if she turns up late? what if she makes me look horrible" I think I'd be happier with the knowledge that I have my make-up regime sorted and ready to go!!!

(image above by Suky Make-up Artist)


  1. I'm one of those girls who is never gonna be able to do my own bridal make-up - but i'm gonna put it to the test and try out some new looks after a few visits to the make up counters.

  2. yeah, my cousin got married recently and she did it herself on the second day, it looked better than the first day.
    the most i can do myself is eyeliner, lipgloss and eyeshadow, which is all i need.

  3. i just have to go experimental on ma party makeup yet bridal is just out of question and den der is this light issue aswell..bridal makeup by pros come out good on camera though most of the time the bride in reality is looking the painted doll

  4. i would say defo do it yourself.
    at least you cant complin and say it looks rubbish. the good thing with doing it yourself if that you can practive as much as you want with different colours (ok yes if the dress is red you shoudl wear red but not really...oyu could try something not so harsh...) you have more time to experiment. Ok i had my wedding makeup done in PAKISTAN! yes pakistan but i MUST say i was REALLY imrpressed...i spent all day at the salon with my mum and sisters, i had about 4 girls doing my dress and my makeup. God knows how i let people from pakistan do my wedding makeup but i have NO complaints, and my makeup was so natural, and i didnt look like a ghost.sometimes you just have to take a chance...

  5. Yes sometimes offcos yes.If u are not prof or dnt have a expert hand deffinetly u need one....unless u r Aishwariya Rai....
    coz marrige comes once in ur lie that shoudnt be a blunder afterall :)

  6. As a working make-up artist, i totally understand your point, there are lots of make-up artst out there who aren't even qualified, working because they think they are good. Although, this is one experience. The last think you want to think about on your wedding day is your make-up, that is why we are around to help. A make-up artist should never over book or turn up late otherwise she would not get re-peat work, every job leads to another. The best way to judge a good make-up artist is for her portfolio, if your not happy with her work, simply do not book her.

    Also having a cold, is not the make-up artists fault, she should have cancelled and sent someone to do the job if she was able to. Make-up artists practice hygenically, we don't all give the bride germs.

  7. I recently hired a beautician for my neice's wedding, who had posted flyers advertising her services. Her name was Sabah and she bought her 14 year old sister to help..BIG MISTAKE!! Her sister curled my hair and burnt the side of my face with curling tongs which has left me with a permanent scar. It is totally wrong when these girls can go into business with no proper qualifications and she charged me full price of £150!!

  8. I am also a make up artist and I got married recently myself. Even though I can do my own make up professionally I still booked a professional to do it as I couldn't imagine waking up at 5am and plastering all that make up on especially once the nerves start to set in. My make up artist was really expensive but now I look back at my pictures and feel really pleased with the way I looked

    The bottom line is you only get married once (hopefully) and your wedding day is the only day in your life that you can go out and spend hundreds and thousands on your outfit and ur make up.

    It's all down to personal preference at the end of the day but sometimes u should just spoil yourself, if u don't do it on your wedding day then when will u get another chance?

  9. I got married in the summer and was so lucky to find a good makeup artist. My makeup lasted the whole day and looked so natural. I have recommended her to many people. The photos come out great to. However I have seen many beauticians and found that a lot of them had photos that was not they own work or airbrushed to the max. So glad I found Farzana (Charmed Beauty) she came on time and did a wonder job on me and my sisters.. xx-Naz-xx

  10. Really interesting article.

    Of course there will always be plenty of people claiming to offer a great makeup service but then fail to produce the results.

    i think it is very important to

    1. Have a make up trial
    2. Have synergy with the makeup artist, who understands your requirements but also gives you valid professional advice
    3. Never to book just based on a portfolio or advertisiing (magazine pictures), but to speak to the makeup artist in person and understand her product range
    4. Provides free advice and guidance and has an information based web site and not just one of those me, me, me sites
    5. Is available herself on the day, not a junior or trainee!

    You generally only get married once in your lifetime make sure you get pampered and looked after!

    Enjoy your wedding day stress free and remember the best makeup artists are are those who get fully booked, its those who do good work at a reasonable price and can produce the results for you and use word of mouth to help too!

    Best of luck! x

  11. nyc..........sara


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