Wedding Make-Up… Decisions, Decisions

Choosing a make-up artist for my wedding day could have been easy but it wasn’t, simply because I didn’t trust myself.

Let me start by saying I knew exactly what I wanted:

  • Perfect brows- arched and prominent but not unnatural
  • Natural contouring (come through cheek bones)
  • Even skin tone (make me look FLAWLESS honey)
  • Glamorous eyes (lashes, shimmer the works)
  • To look like myself – I had no interest in being so made up that I was unrecognizable

A girlfriend of mine got married a year before me and I liked her make-up. She recommended her so I booked a trial.

I showed her what I wanted (a screen shot of a picture from her Instagram) and she went to work. I loved the look she did on me not because it was perfect and exactly what I wanted for my wedding but because she nailed the important parts. My brows were symmetrical and gorgeously arched, exactly how I would do them on myself if I had the skill and patience and her foundation work was flawless. The true test for me was the flash photo test. Sometimes you think your make-up looks great but then you see a photo and your face is cakey. If the wrong make-up is used, flash will make you look ashen, pale or draggy (which is fine if that’s the sort of look you’re going for). She passed the flash test!

Wedding Make-Up Trial


I was excited to see what everyone thought. I sent a few photos to my mom and to my maid of honor. They were both underwhelmed. “That looks like an ‘everyday look,'” they shared. Hummm, maybe they were right? I started to doubt myself. Maybe I shouldn’t book her. I went back and poured over all of her Instagram photos. I asked her a ton more questions.

My MOH gently suggested that I get a test with the make-up artist who did her face for her wedding (she looked flawless!) So I obliged. I did the second make up test the day  the same day as my fiances fraternity gala.  Last time I got the trial, I had nowhere to go. This time I was going to put the trail to the dance and sweat test… and get my money’s worth. $125 later….  I hated everything about what she did to my face and if that’s what I had on my wedding day I think I would’ve cried. I ended up going home and dabbing most of the make up off for a more natural look.

After that, I decided to go with my original choice – Glossy Bee. I loved her work on IG and I had a reference that I trusted. And on top of that, she was reasonably priced. In the end, I could not have been happier with my make up. I did need touch-ups besides my lip gloss and I got exactly what I wanted. The moral, go with your gut.

TIPS for selecting a make-up artist for your wedding:

  • Do a trial
  • Do a flash photography “test” to see what the make up looks like on camera
  • Select someone who can and is willing to take direction (more smokey, less shimmer etc)
  • Pick someone with a personality that you will be able to tolerate on your big day
  • Speak to brides who have booked the artist you are considering. Also check wedding sites for reviews.
  • Once you book someone STOP looking. You will drive yourself crazy.
  • Consider the opinions of those around you but ultimately do what makes you happy!
  • If the artist is going to work on multiple people the day of your wedding. Create a schedule beforehand Don’t go first…. or last. You don’t want to be the “warm-up” or the rush job.
  • Hire someone whose strengths align with what you want. If you want contouring and the person you hire doesn’t do that, it’s probably not a match.

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