Note: My cousin Jen is going to be a bridesmaid in a couple of weeks and asked me for wedding makeup advice. She lives in southern California and has three awesome kids who take up a lot of her time, so I knew that my ideas needed to be easy to follow and the products easy to find. Besides specific shades and colors that I thought would suit her coloring, here were my ideas- in no particular order.
Wheeeeeee! You get to be in a wedding! Since weddings are all about pictures you want to make sure that your makeup looks just as good in pictures as it does in real life. Apply it in stages- if you use a moisturizer (that just depends on your skin), put that on and wait a few minutes for it to sink in. Then put on some primer (again, this depends on your skin type), and wait for that to dry before you put on foundation. While you wait for your foundation to set, do your eye makeup, and then go back to face makeup. Give yourself lots of time. Blend everything really well!
#1 Tip: try not to use anything with a lot of SPF in it. (This is my most important thing about wedding makeup.) Sunscreen tends to bounce the light off of your face in unpredictable ways, so it can look like your face is ghostly or shiny in pictures. Not cute.
#2 Use a foundation primer. It doesn’t have to be expensive, in fact a really well reviewed one (I have not personally tried it) is the Shine Control Primer from Neutrogena, which you can get at pretty much any drugstore. Get it, try it out and see if it keeps your foundation in place before the wedding, and if not, RETURN IT. Walgreens or Ulta are really good for returning stuff that doesn’t work for you. This one could be worth checking out too.
#3 Set your foundation of choice with a powder that isn’t shimmery or anything (this one is my favorite, Neutrogena makes a good one too but it is almost TOO matte for me- so use a light hand). If powder tends to look cakey on you, use a light dusting over your T-zone and then touch up through the event with blotting papers.
#4 Once all of your makeup is applied, mist it with a few spritzes of a setting spray. This is like hairspray for your face and will help everything stay in place for longer.
#5 If you want to cover up under-eye circles or darkness, the Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer is awesome. They also have a brightener shade which is sort of pink and when used lightly brightens up your under-eye area making you look all fresh and awake and stuff.
#6 Pinky-peachy cheeks and lips are always a classic look, don’t pull focus from anybody else, and are probably a safe choice in Southern California since things tend to be casual and a little beachy there. 🙂 Try to get a blush that has just a little shimmer to it if you want to, but absolutely no GLITTER. I like this one a lot for a hint of shimmer- I think I have it in rose gold. If you already have a blush you like, but feel like your cheekbones need some highlighting, you can lightly dust on a very light colored shimmery eyeshadow and blend it in really well. The Iced Latte shade from the Infallible Eyeshadows would work well for this. (No glitter for eye makeup either, but shimmer is ok.) For lipstick I’m a big fan of the Rimmel Provocalips line- it’s long wearing and at least on me it doesn’t wear off in patches and look gross halfway through the day.
#7 I have really oily lids so I always use an eyeshadow primer. If you don’t already have one, the best one I have found so far is the Wet & Wild Fergie Take On the Day Eyeshadow Primer. It is just as good as the high-end ones, and keeps my eyeshadow on all day. It’s at Walgreens and Target.
#8 Find out if the other girls are wearing false eyelashes. If so, get some so your eyes stand out just as much as theirs do in pictures! This is an excellent video about falsies. They’re not hard to apply I PROMISE, but they do take a little practice. This could be way more glamorous than the wedding you’re in warrants- it all kind of depends on the vibe. Also, if false lashes totally skeeve you out, skip them and put on several coats of mascara, particularly on the lashes at the outer corner of your eyes.
#9 Take your powder, blush, lipstick/gloss, mascara, and eyeliner with you. If you get there and all the other bridesmaids are way more “done” than you are, add more to your face. Way easier to add more than to tone it down!
#10 Bring blotting papers so you don’t have to keep applying powder and start looking all dry and cakey.
#11 Get the maid of honor a glass of wine after her speech. 🙂
I hope you have fun! Some excellent youtube videos (I do love a video tutorial) for wedding/bridal make are here and here. Remember it is more about technique and how they put the makeup on than the brands or even colors they use. Be sure to do a trial run of whatever you decide to wear at least a week before the wedding so you have time to see if it’s all going to work the way you want it to. It’s just makeup- so experiment before the big event and you will be completely confident in your look so you won’t have to worry that your lashes are coming off or if you have lipstick on your teeth!
Let me know if I missed anything or if you have more questions! I started out with like 3 ideas and then it snowballed. HA!