Most women on the go don’t spend more than 15 minutes on their daily beauty routine. But for that one special day, it’s nice to get pampered and spend a little extra time and money so you look radiant walking down the aisle.

Follow these make-up, hair and nail tips to plan your wedding beauty itinerary and pick the products that will look great in pictures and last all day.


Kristen Graves, business manager for Clinique at Dillard’s, says more brides are making bolder make-up choices, choosing smoky eyes and rich colours rather than the soft, subtle, romantic palette that’s been popular for many years. However, don’t go for too many focal points.

“If you’re going to do a smoky eye, do a soft lip. Don’t have two different things on your face competing for attention. So if you want your lips to pop, do a soft, neutral lid,” she says.

Use face, lid, lip and lash primer so your make-up has staying power. Choose foundation that won’t make you appear shiny or ghostly in pictures. HD powders help set the make-up and provide a good photo finish.

Graves says it’s smart to hire a professional make-up artist to prepare the bridal party rather than do it yourself, since quality make-up brands can cost a lot of money, while an artist already has a fully stocked kit. (But if you’re going to buy anything, buy lip colour, since you’ll have to touch it up every few hours.) Having artists come to your home or the hair salon the morning of the wedding also helps reduce stress and manage time.

“Really be very conscientious of the fact that these pictures are going to last a lifetime, so you want to look right,” she says.


Before the wedding day, get your hair ready ahead of time.

“For color and trim, you’re going to want to do that one to two weeks before, just because you don’t want it to grow out too much, obviously, but you want to give it time if you don’t like it or something happens,” Danielle Overly, salon manager at Ulta Beauty, says.

She also stresses the importance of going through a trial run with the stylist a couple weeks before the big day, since sometimes there’s a disconnect between the vision the bride describes and what the stylist hears. It might cost a little extra, but it’s a great way to smooth out any bumps, plus you can take pictures to recreate the look on the morning of the wedding.

Many brides are abandoning elaborate updos for a looser, simpler, more natural hairdo on their wedding day. Overly says she sees more brides ask for long, loose curls or half-updos that are vintage-inspired. No matter what style you choose, make sure to keep a bottle of hairspray handy to tame flyaways all night.


Overly says most brides still stick to soft pastels, neutrals or French tips on their wedding. However, they are fond of a new technique.

“A lot of people are kind of straying away from the acrylics and doing the gel nails,” she says.

Don’t get your nails done too far in advance of the wedding to prevent chipping. Overly recommends two or three days before. If doing appointments for the whole bridal party, whether it’s for hair, nails or make-up, she says it’s sometimes easier on the stylist(s) to stagger appointments.

“Two might come in, and then 30 minutes later two more might come in. … That way you don’t have eight people here and six of them are just standing around,” she says.

Brooke Wilson can be reached at brooke.wilson@newspressnow.com. Follow her on Twitter: @SJNPWilson.