Whether you’re a black tie wedding bride, a barefoot in the backyard bride, or somewhere in between, your wedding is one of the most photographed days of your life. So it makes sense to want your bridal makeup look to fall nothing short of flawless.
If you’ve toyed with the idea of doing your own wedding makeup, you are among a rising fleet of brides doing precisely the same. It makes perfect sense when you think about it. More than ever before, we have access to incredible products along with highly detailed wedding makeup tutorials that cover everything from natural makeup looks to dramatic smokey eyes.
Ahead, we’re teaching you everything you need to know about how to do makeup for your wedding. These bridal makeup pro tips will leave you feeling confident—and looking camera-ready—from the first photo to the last sip of champagne.
Take Care of Your Skin
Following a skin-nourishing regimen is always important, but be consistent in the weeks and months leading up to your wedding day. Think of gorgeous skin as the canvas for beautiful bridal makeup. Our guide on How to Get Radiant, Glowing Skin goes deeper with skincare tips for brides.
Pro Tip: Speak to your dermatologist or esthetician before booking any in-office treatments, like lasering, peels, or microneedling. They can help you set a plan and timeline based on your skincare goals, taking into account any necessary downtime.
Practice Test Runs
As the saying goes, “practice makes perfect.” Think of your makeup test runs as an opportunity to try out different wedding day makeup looks and products. You’ll get a chance to see how products sit on your skin throughout the day and then you can tweak your foundation application, lipstick, blush, and eye makeup. Plus, the more you practice before getting married, the more polished you’ll look—and more confident you’ll feel—on your wedding day.
Pro Tip: Have a friend take pictures of you with and without a flash to ensure you’ve perfected your camera-ready makeup. Some setting powders leave behind a white residue that only shows up with a camera flash, and sometimes makeup reads differently on cameras versus real life. For a wedding-approved setting powder, look no further than our Bye Bye Pores Poreless Finish Loose Setting Powder.
They’re Classic Looks for a Reason
You might be tempted to try on the latest TikTok beauty trends, but we recommend perfecting what you already know when it comes to hair and makeup for weddings. Classic, non-trendy looks are often the safer choice in terms of bridal makeup. Especially if your end-game is to lean into that sense of timeless beauty. Think red, pink, or nude lipstick and long, fluttering lashes versus fiery orange lip color or double winged eyeliner.
Wear SPF Without a White Cast
A wedding day sunburn? That’s a double ouch so make sure you’re wearing SPF. But heads up: In some cases, mineral sunscreens formulated with white ingredients such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide can create a white cast on your face, leading to a ghostly look. Opt for a product that doesn’t leave a white cast, such as CC+ Nude Glow Lightweight Foundation + Glow Serum with SPF 40. This skin-loving, medium coverage foundation is perfect for that glowy, natural makeup aesthetic.
Pro Tip: The Heavenly Luxe Complexion Perfection Brush #7 can help create a flawless, airbrushed look when using liquid or cream foundations.
Match Your Complexion
Speaking of foundation, make sure that the product you choose is a perfect match for your face and neck. This is one of the most common mistakes people make as they learn how to apply makeup. If you’re not sure what shade to choose for your skin tone, IT Cosmetics Foundation Finder makes the process a cinch. The tool also helps you select the best foundation for your specific complexion needs.
No matter how much coverage you choose, make sure to apply primer first. An all-around great option is Your Skin But Better Makeup Primer+ Oil-Free. Featuring All Day Grip Technology™, this primer acts as a makeup-gripping base that hydrates your skin while extending the wear of your makeup.
Check the Weather
No doubt that you’ve already downloaded four different weather apps to see what Mother Nature has in store for your wedding. But (and not to add another weather-related worry to your list) you need to consider how the forecast might impact your bridal makeup.
For example, if the weather calls for hot temps and high humidity, you’ll want to keep a setting powder nearby to help your makeup last and keep shininess at bay. Bye Bye Pores Pressed Setting Powder is a weightless setting powder that blurs the appearance of pores, and you can even use it throughout the day as a blotting powder.
If the climate looks dry, a setting spray like Your Skin But Better Setting Spray+ is a better option since it can add a hint of glowing dewiness while helping your bride makeup last longer. And if rain or happy tears are expected, you definitely want to use a great mascara to prevent smudging and smearing. Our pick: Hello Lashes+ Volumizing Mascara with Lash Serum where the 360° Lash-Wrapping Brush ensures this tubing mascara wraps each and every lash for instant separation and definition in one stroke.
Keep Eyebrows Defined and Natural
Though sometimes overlooked, a bit of brow makeup can make all the difference with your wedding makeup. Choose foolproof brow products that make creating the perfect eyebrows simple, like Brow Power Universal Eyebrow Pencil and Brow Power Filler Eyebrow Gel. The former helps you draw the perfect natural brow while the latter helps fill in sparse areas and sets hairs in place.
Pro Tip: We’ve taken the guesswork out of finding the most flattering eyebrow shape for your face with our guide on eyebrow mapping. Read it before picking up the tweezers.
Beware of Too Much Blush
Strive for a natural flush when doing your bridal makeup. Too much can start to lean clownish, but not enough can make you look “washed out” in images. A high-quality makeup brush, like Heavenly Luxe French Boutique Blush Brush #4, will keep your application from looking heavy-handed. The brush’s precision-cut head effortlessly hugs the curves of your cheeks for a soft-focus, naturally pretty finish every time. Also, a blush like Bye Bye Pores Blush can help create a flawless-looking complexion and even minimize the look of pores.
Brighten Your Under Eyes
Covering dark circles will help you look bright and awake on your wedding day. A light touch is best, and make sure to choose the right shade for your skin tone. One dot is all you need with Bye Bye Under Eye Anti-Aging Concealer, a waterproof concealer that delivers highly pigmented coverage for up to 24 hours. Plus, it won’t crease or crack no matter how much you tear up at the altar or tear it up on the dance floor.
Do Your Makeup Before Getting Dressed
To protect your wedding dress, do your makeup first and then set it with a powder or spray. You can even enlist someone in your bridal party to help you get your dress over your head without affecting your wedding makeup. (It’s basically part of the job description!) A good rule of thumb is to have your makeup done an hour or two before putting on your dress.
Plan for Touch-Ups
You’ll definitely want to do some light touch-ups throughout your wedding day. Make this process easier by putting everything you need in a small cosmetic bag and keeping it nearby.
Whether you’re going for simple wedding makeup or something a bit more dramatic, we’re positive you’ll nail it with these tips. If you need more bridal makeup ideas, check out our guide on wedding makeup looks.