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Beauty and Grooming

Create Your Perfect DIY Wedding Makeup

Though the day is supposed to be the best of your life, wedding prep can feel hellish. Venues, flowers, guests, music, dates, dress. With so many decisions to be made, it’s easy to end up feeling completely overwhelmed with the number of people you need to consult about the details of a day that’s supposed to be all yours. So cut one of them loose; the makeup artist. Not sure where to start? We’ve got all the advice on things to think about ahead of your big day to create your own perfect wedding makeup.

Trust us, it is possible to do it yourself, looking just as flawless without the extra stress of making small talk while you prepare. Create a more intimate atmosphere on the morning of your wedding by keeping the room to friends and family only. Schedule in a period of calm by doing your own wedding makeup, giving you control over your look and a moment to check in with yourself before walking down the aisle. With a little practice, we promise you’ll feel confident enough to create a look you’ll love forever.

Pre-pamper

The best makeup starts long before your wedding day. Best way to create a flawless glowy base? Treat your skin to some extra care the month before. It’s easy to get swept up in the whirlwind of stressful preparation, but don’t let your skin get left behind. Stressed skin won’t be kind to your makeup, so ensure you maintain your pamper routine. To get the kind of glow no highlighter can fake, you should;

  • Up your water intake – The easiest skincare tip in the book, in the month before aim to drink about 2-3 litres per day. Become best friends with your water bottle, take it everywhere.
  • Use SPF– Protection is key. This tip should be for every day, wedding or not, as using SPF is the best thing you can do to keep your skin healthy, firm and prevent premature signs of age.  If your venue is outside, make sure to put a layer under your makeup. You want to be a blushing bride, not a burnt one.
  • Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise – Makeup sits happiest on hydrated skin, so make sure to keep up with your moisturiser. In the weeks before, get a good hydrating mask to treat your skin to, and pile on the night cream before bed to avoid any dry patches that makeup will cling too. Having beautifully pampered skin will also help you feel your best and keep you relaxed in the run-up to the day.

Don’t skip the primer

Prime is something you can’t skip on the big day. Reducing shine, balancing your complexion and increasing wear-time, a good primer will cut down the number of times you’ll have to run off for a touch-up and give you the time back to soak in the atmosphere of your special day.  For the best result, apply generously and leave to soak in for at least 30 seconds.

  • For oily skin– A silicone primer will create a boundary between your skin and your makeup, stopping any oil from breaking through to the surface to make the wrong kind of shine.
  • For acne-prone skin– Opt for a primer with skincare built in to avoid upsetting your skin before the honeymoon. Look for ingredients like tea tree, hyaluronic or salicylic acids that will care for your skin as well as your makeup.
  • For dull skin – Vitamin C and E are amazing for your skin. The antioxidants help undo UV damage and nourish your skin, bringing back all the glow and all the life to create a bright base. Look for one or both for a primer that will help wake you up.

Don’t go in too heavy

While the temptation for wedding makeup is to go for a super high coverage foundation to give an airbrushed finish, a heavy-duty option is the most likely to make you look cakey. While you want to look perfect, you don’t want to look like you’re carrying an inch of makeup round on your face and you certainly don’t want it transferring each time you hug someone. Instead, opt for a satin finish foundation that is more buildable without looking heavy. Take it slow and add more if you think you need it, blending carefully and taking it all the way down to your collarbones to make sure there’s no lines or change in shade. 

The same rule applies for concealer. Getting full coverage is all about clever technique, not the amount you apply, so try your hand at pin-pointing concealer. Use a thin eyeliner brush to place the concealer exactly where you need it, then blend out the edges with a small fluffy eyeshadow brush. This will give you the coverage exactly where you need it, rather than creating a mask over your whole face.

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The summer months are fast approaching, and with warmer temperatures comes the influx of weddings. Don’t let the pre-wedding planning overshadow the excitement of seeing your loved ones joining together in holy matrimony. We’re here to answer the most popular wedding gift etiquette questions.

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Practice in white

Not sure if you want to tan a little before your wedding? Do all your trial runs in a white t-shirt. While it might up your laundry load, seeing your wedding makeup against the white will show you exactly how it will look against the light dress on the day. 

You should aim to do a trial run a couple of times to make sure you’re completely happy with the look and get an impression of how much time you should leave for it on the big day. We recommend adding an extra half an hour to the time to make sure you’re not rushed and free to enjoy the experience of getting ready at your own pace. When you practice, make sure to take lots of photos in different lighting to check it’s photogenic and stay in the makeup for a couple of hours to check that you like the look in day and night so you’re not second-guessing how it looks on the day.

Invest in a toolkit

If you’re saving the money on a makeup artist, invest it in some good tools. Good brushes will do most of the work for you when it comes to creating a perfect base, so use the spare budget to get a little toolkit. Our essentials are a blending sponge for foundation, a small tapered brush for concealer, a big fluffy powder brush to set it all, an angled brush for bronzer, and a couple of super soft, precise eyeshadow brushes. If it all seems a bit daunting, you could always book in for a one-off wedding makeup masterclass, just to get you acquainted with the right tools and techniques to use.

Don’t be afraid of colour

In the worry to make your wedding makeup timeless, it’s easy to just go for a simple, neutral palette. If that’s what you’re after, go for it! But don’t be afraid to step outside the traditional and introduce a pop of colour. Consider your theme and colour palette and consider incorporating it into your look. We loved Priyanka Chopra’s bold pink lip, Miranda Kerr’s matching pink blushed cheeks and eyes, and Solange’s classic red lip, so why not try it out? If a splash of colour is your thing, don’t be scared to make your wedding look a little brighter.

Look like you

That being said, it’s important that your makeup looks like you. Your wedding day will likely be the most photographed day of your life, so you want to make sure you look back and recognise yourself. While the temptation may be to do something super extravagant and glamourous, try to avoid straying too far from your usual routine. You want to look like the best version of yourself, so avoid anything that may look dated in 10 years and don’t do a makeup look that you wouldn’t wear to any other event. Stay true to yourself. 

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Keep your lipstick on

Ideally, after your first kiss, you want to be the one wearing your lipstick, not your partner. The best way to create a super long-lasting, transfer-proof lip colour is to take it slowly. In between every stage of your makeup, apply a light layer and blot. Apply, blot, repeat. This will turn your lipstick into a stain, helping it soak into your lips rather than just settling on the surface. Liquid lipstick is great for getting good colour pay-off and staying power without your lips feeling dry or cakey for your first kiss as a married couple. And don’t skip the lip-liner, helping the colour last all day and giving you a more defined lip shape for a perfect pout. 

Cry proof eyes

Chances are you’ll shed a couple of tears. Whether it be as you walk down the aisle or tears of laughter during the speeches, emotions will be running high. So your eye-makeup has to be tough. In the months beforehand, test out a couple of waterproof mascaras to see which one gives the best volume while surviving the heaviest of cry-fests. Otherwise, investing in some great false lashes that will hold on through anything is a good option. We recommend going for individual lashes, while they may be more time consuming, they give a much more natural look, and if you lose one in a wave of emotion, they’re much easier to replace than a full set.

In case of emergencies

While you don’t want to spend your whole day retouching your makeup, make sure to pack a couple of just-in-case products like a concealer to cover any tear smudges, a powder to prevent extra shine, eyeshadow, your lip colour, sponge and a little compact mirror. Put a bridesmaid on makeup look-out duty so you don’t have to spare a thought on stressing about it, leaving you free to enjoy the day knowing any little disasters can be quickly and easily fixed.

But regardless, more important than how you look is how you feel. So take time and create a wedding makeup look that makes you feel beautiful and confident, then go and soak up every moment of your special day.

Written by Lucy Harbron

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Lucy Harbron

Lucy Harbron

Writer and expert

Inspired by the most iconic women in history, my style is informed by the Monroes, Sedgwicks and Birkins. Forever torn between maximalism and minimalism, you’ll find me stomping around in heeled boots and trying to refrain from buying another pair of earrings.


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