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5 Tips on Choosing a Makeup Artist
and Styling Look for Your Big Wedding Day

Dealing with cosmetics on your wedding day can be fraught with danger or an experience of safety and even luxury. Although many brides take the risk of doing their own makeup, the wise bride visits a makeup artist before the wedding to scheme and strategize about ways to look her best when the photographs are taken. Pictures are the enduring mementos of a wedding ceremony and the reception, and these are pictures you want to look your best for. Getting tips from a makeup expert (or even the makeup artist in concert with your photographer) is one way to avoid makeup disasters on the big day.

#!. Choosing a Make-up and Hair Stylist for Your Wedding Day

Hiring a makeup artist to first conceptualize your wedding look and then apply your makeup on the day of the wedding is a smart move. If you can afford the time and money, having the entire bridal party done by a professional will make your bridesmaids and your mom look their best for the photos, too. Traditional Indian weddings involve painting the hands and feet with henna as well as applying cosmetics and dressing the bride in her wedding sari: in the past, the women in the family readied the bride for her wedding, but with more families living far apart, brides are opting to bring in experts to help the wedding go smoothly.

#2. Plan MONTHS ahead to scedule a professional bridal make-up artist

Choosing a stylist is a little tricky and shouldn't be done at the last moment. If you don't already have a favorite stylist, don't just pick the first one you meet unless you have an instant rapport. Shop around: ask to see their portfolios, talk with them about your ideas and the styles you are planning to evoke at your wedding. Look for someone who has similar taste and who wants to support your dreams on your wedding day. Equally important is reliability: ask for references and call the stylists' old clients to ask a few questions. Did the stylist show up on time? Was he or she prepared, having brought the tools needed to get the job done? And was the bride comfortable with stating her wishes and getting what she wanted from the stylist?

#3. Have a trial run with the professional stylist

Once you've narrowed your choices down to two or three (having already made sure they aren't booked on the date of your wedding), visit the stylist and have a trial run of the makeup you want to wear for your wedding. Talk about the lighting where the ceremony and reception will be held, and the look you want for your photos, which should influence the cosmetics you use. Are you looking for a dramatic look or something natural and fresh? Will your hair be up or down, and what sort of hair accessories or veil will you be using? Coordinate your makeup with your hair style, jewelry and gown.

#4. Consider the time of day and wedding setting: Night, Day, or Outdoors

If your wedding is during the day and outside and the reception in the evening and indoors, you may want to schedule a second makeup session between the ceremony and the reception. You may need makeup that's lighter for daytime portraits, but for evening revelries you may want to go a little heavier on the eye makeup. Darker eye shadow, deeper blusher and shimmery lip color may be perfect for nighttime, but in the daylight you may need more natural eye shadow colors and a matte lipstick. Work out the details with your stylist so all your portraits come out showing you at your very best.

#5. DIY Bridal Makeup Still Requires a Little Advice from a Professional

If you decide to do your own makeup or have a friend do it for you, it's still worthwhile to get tips from an expert and then practice your makeup before the big day. Then, prepare as a professional would with towels to wrap around the neck (and over that gorgeous gown), brushes for applying makeup so your hands don't get stained (or worse, stain your clothes) and a bottle of spot remover standing by. Don't let a wayward mascara brush wreck your ivory lace veil!

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