There’s a lot of pressure to look your best on the big day, but sometimes looking your best just means looking like yourself! If you don’t wear much (or any) makeup on a regular basis, taking control of your makeup application might make you feel more comfortable with bridal makeup. To create a look that feels like you, follow these DIY tips for applying your own makeup on your wedding day.
- Use primer. Use both face primer and eye shadow primer to prep your skin and keep your makeup looking fresh all day long. Primer might not feel natural when you’re applying it, but it’s lightweight on the skin and makes all the difference with the look and wear of your makeup.
- Blend mineral cosmetics down your neck. It’s normal for your face and neck to be slightly different colors, but the difference can become even more apparent when you apply foundation. Blend your makeup down the neck to avoid a line of demarcation along the jaw. Start with a layer of medium to full coverage liquid foundation using a liquid foundation brush or makeup sponge, then go in with concealer if needed to cover trouble areas. Set the look with a finishing powder or semi-matte pressed powder.
- Don’t use all new makeup for your wedding. There’s nothing wrong with sticking with what you love! If you have a foundation or blush that you’ve been wearing for years, it might be a good pick. See how it photographs in natural and artificial light, as well as with and without a camera flash, to see if you get any flashback. Flashback is when your makeup creates a reflection when photographed with flash which can give a ghostly appearance to the skin. If it passes the flash test, you’re good to go.
- Follow a makeup tutorial. Either pick an eye shadow color combination you’ve worked with before, or follow a makeup tutorial for step by step instructions on how to achieve a specific look. There are thousands of makeup tutorials out there, and a look doesn’t have to be labeled “Bridal Makeup Tutorial” for it to be an amazing wedding look. Try searching with a variety of keywords: subtle, smoky, golden, soft, romantic, coral, vintage, simple - the options are endless.
- Use water resistant mascara. Even if you think, “I’m not a crier, I’ve got this!” it’s probably best to play it safe.
- Fill in your brows. It’s easy to underestimate the power of the brow, but a filled in eyebrow can add structure to your face and give your look a certain je ne sais quoi, especially if you don’t normally fill them in. For more tips, follow our natural brow tutorial.
- Pick a longwearing lipstick and avoid shimmer. Longwearing lipstick means less time spent on touchups, and shimmer-free lipstick will have a smoother texture. Matte lip formulas wear longer than sheer or glossy options and will have less color transfer.
- Try on a few lipstick shades to find ‘the one’. One trick to selecting a flattering lipstick is to pick a shade with undertones that match your undertones (warm for warm, cool for cool), but at the end of the day the lipstick that looks best will be the one you love and feel confident wearing!
- Define your lips with lip liner. Lining your lips with a pencil allows for a precise lip application that won’t feather. Follow the natural lip line with a color that’s pretty close to your lipstick, then shade inwards using the side of the pencil to keep the line from looking harsh. Apply your lipstick directly over the liner.
And lastly, practice your complete look. Once you have all of your products, do a trial run of your full face makeup, timing yourself to see how much time you need to schedule for makeup on your wedding day. Wear the makeup for a full day to see how it holds up and take pictures to make sure everything photographs true to color.
If the idea of DIY bridal makeup intimidates you more than hiring a makeup artist, you may want to give the professional route a try! You can always book a makeup trial a few weeks out from your date to explain to your artist the style you’re going for. Be sure to tell them about your skin type so they can create a customized look just for you.