Bridal Makeup: Tips, Tricks, & Inspiration

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(photo from www.AnastasiaVolkova.com)

Your makeup on your wedding day is one of the most important aspects of your entire look (besides the dress of course!). For many brides, it can be difficult to find a look that fits the ambiance of their venue and the design of their dress. Pinterest is always a good place to find wedding inspiration of any kind, but there are also several websites you can visit that focus on makeup alone. 

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We recommend bringing pictures to your makeup and hair trial, to give your artist the best idea of exactly what you want. Typically, wedding looks are best kept natural, with soft, neutral eyes and brows, a flawless complexion, and a neutral lip. False lashes are generally a wedding day staple, to emphasize the eyes in photography. Additionally, you want to make sure your brows and blush are strong enough to appear in photography, as these are the parts of the look that tend to disappear when photographed. 

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The new trend of contouring and highlighting may grab your attention. Again, you want to be specific with your artist on how you want this to look. Harsh contour and highlight can look artificial and masculine, while a soft look can appear natural, and simply emphasize the shape of your face. Additionally, it is important to use a cool-toned contour, rather than a warm-toned one which can cause your face to look orange.

How To Contour And Highlight Perfectly

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As far as products go, it is important to pick the right colors for your skin tone. Your makeup artist should be efficient at this, but if you are doing your makeup yourself, or need some inspiration, we have a few suggestions:

Fair Skin

Complexion: Those with fair skin should focus on finding the perfect foundation shade, as it can often be difficult to find one pale enough. Brands such as Illamasqua, NARS, and Bobbi Brown tend to make very light foundations perfect for a fair skin tone. You want something without SPF for you wedding day, as the sunscreen in the foundation will cause a flashback in photography, making your face appear lighter than your body.

Eyes: You have the most flexibility here. Again, you want to stick with neutrals, but you can choose from either cool tones or warm. For cool toned eyeshadows, we suggest the Urban Decay Naked 2 Palette, which is filled with a good selection of matte and shimmery taupe shades. For warm toned eyeshadows, we suggest the Stila Eyes Are the Window Palette in Spirit. This, too, has an awesome selection of shades and even has a few reddish/purple shades. 

Lips: Longevity is important on your wedding day, and matte lipstick is definitely the longest lasting formulation. Great neutral, long-wearing options include: NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Sex MachineKat Von D Studded Kiss Lipstick in Agatha, and the Bite Beauty Matte Creme Lip Crayon in Peche.

Blush and Bronzer: Smashbox makes it easy to contour with one product with their Step-By-Step Contour Kit, which includes guides on exactly how to get your desired sculpted look. NARS blush in the shade Sin is the perfect natural dusty pink, and Tarte Amazonian Clay Blush in Dollface is a great pink option that actually gives a 12-hour wear.

Medium Skin

Complexion: If your skin is warm and medium, NARS makes a variety of yellow-based foundations (rather than pink) to make your skin appear flawless. Make Up For Ever also makes a large range of shades in their HD Foundation, which is perfect for photography and contains no SPF.

Eyes: Generally, warm skin tones are encouraged to stick with warm toned eyeshadows, as cool toned shadows can clash with the complexion. The first Urban Decay Naked Palette contains several gorgeous bronzy and warm toned shadows to achieve the perfect neutral eye. The Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette also contains great warm eyeshadow options, and it smells like chocolate!

Lips: Warm tones are, again, encouraged to avoid cool toned lipsticks. Great neutral options include the Kat Von D Studded Lipstick in Lovecraft, which is a great mauve pink. The Hourglass Opaque Rouge Liquid Lipstick in Canvas is a nice nude option with incredibly long wear. 

Blush and Bronzer: Again, the best option for contouring a medium skintone is the Smashbox Step-By-Step Contour Kit. Great blush options include the Tarte Amazonian Clay 12hr Blush in Exposed for a more neutral cheek, and the NARS Blush in Seduction for a deeper sangria cheek. 

Deeper Skin

Complexion: Lancome makes an excellent shade range that encompasses all types of deeper skin tones, including those with red undertones. Make Up For Ever’s HD range also includes foundations that enhance deeper skintones, rather than give them a gray appearance.

Eyes: Deeper skin tones are also encouraged to use neutral tones for wedding looks, however, shadows with a pinkish hue tend to be very flattering on this skin tone. Try the Urban Decay Naked 3 Palette, which contains a gorgeous array of rose-gold shades. The Too Faced Natural Eye Neutral Eye Shadow Collection also contains a nice mixture of pinky and warm toned shadows to achieve the perfect subtle bridal look. 

Lips: The NARS Velvet Matte Lip Pencil in Bahama gives the perfect natural pink-brown lip, and will last all day and night. For a pinkier lip, try the Bite Beauty High Pigment Pencil in Chablis.

Blush and Bronzer: For deeper skintones, contouring can be a bit more tricky. Contour and highlight shades can be too light. So, we recommend the Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit, which comes in shades that are suitable for darker skin tones. For blush, NARS Desire is a great pink choice, while Marc Jacobs’ Shameless Bold Blush in Reckless is a great neutral pink option.

 

 

 

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Quick Tips

So, beyond our recommended products, we wanted to wrap up with some quick tips to help you look your best on your special day!

1. Use a primer & a setting spray: Primer helps your makeup stick to your face and resist heat, while setting spray also helps it stay on your face without melting off. We recommend the Benefit Stay Flawless 15-hr Primer and the Urban Decay All Nighter Setting Spray, these two together make for a flawless, sweat-proof complexion. 

2. Prep your lips: If you have an issue with your lipstick staying on, make sure your lips are properly prepped on your big day. First, exfoliate with a scrub (like the Bite Beauty Whipped Cherry Lip Scrub), then use an intensive moisturizer while you do the rest of your makeup (try the Bite Beauty Agave Lip Mask), before you apply your lipstick, wipe off the previously applied moisturizer and apply a primer and a reverse lip liner to ensure your lipstick doesn’t bleed throughout the night (Bite Beauty Line & Define Primer, Urban Decay 24/7 Lip Liner in Ozone). Apply one thin coat of your lipstick, then blot with tissue. Lastly, apply several coats of lipstick to ensure it lasts all night. Voila! Long lasting lip color. 

3. Mix Foundations: If you can’t find your perfect shade of foundation, don’t hesitate to mix a few colors to find the best match. This a common technique makeup artists use, as skintones are so varied and unique that it can be difficult to find a perfect match. 

4. Prepare for Disaster: Have one of your bridesmaids keep some of your makeup on hand, just in case. Lash glue for if a lash comes loose, lipstick, powder if you get shiny, and a travel size of your setting spray to refresh your face.

5. Be specific: Don’t be afraid to tell your makeup artist exactly what you want, and if you aren’t happy. You want to look and feel your best on your wedding day! 

 

 

 

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