From our friends at Byrdie... The process of finding a makeup artist for your wedding might seem as daunting as the "process" of finding your soul mate in the first place. Luckily, you've already covered the latter; so allow us to help you out with the former. Unsure of where to start? Overwhelmed by how to go about it? Stress no more. Keep scrolling to learn how it's done!
Consult an expert ... your friends!
The natural first place to start is with any friends, family, or co-workers you know of who recently got married and whose look you loved. Because if you've witnessed the results of an artist's work firsthand and loved it—someone who successfully made it through your friend (or whoever's) wedding day without snafus—it just might be the person for you, having already been vetted and proven. If you choose to go a different route, try SMP's Little Black Book for a listing of our top makeup artists or simply look at the bottom of every post to see if a makeup artist you like is listed!
Always have a trial
Many of the initial questions you have will be answered by the vendor website, such as rates, what's included, any package discounts, and whether or not trials are offered. Though doing a trial comes with a fee, you definitely want to do one, as you risk wasting far more money (and emotional stress) if you go into your wedding day having never seen how your makeup will look. You can't ensure you'll be getting what you really want, and what really makes you feel like yourself, until/unless you've met with the artist in person and seen what he or she does with your face.
Do your research
Because a trial costs money, oftentimes half of what the actual wedding-day application will cost, it only makes sense to set up a trial with the person you're pretty positive you'd hire. So do plenty of research before reaching out to schedule your first trial. Pore through the photos of past work, read testimonials, and even google reviews (sometimes you can find Yelp reviews on artists).
When you set up the trial, the artist will likely give you instructions on anything you should bring, such as inspiration photos, but like with anything, preparation is key. Your goal will be to communicate what you want, but words like "natural" and "glowing" can mean different things to different people, while a picture speaks a thousand words. Visual inspiration will help both of you to get on the same page.
Timing is everything
Timing-wise, ideally you should start looking a minimum of six months out from the day of the wedding so you have ample time to research, meet, and conduct trial(s).
Byrdie is a shoppable online and mobile content platform focused on all things beauty— the best products on the market, to the latest celebrity trends, to timeless and instructional "how-tos."
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