If possible, treat yourself to a facial a few days before the ceremony, says makeup artist Jackie Neal. Hydrate skin with a moisturizer before doing anything else. “I recommend Mary Kay Oil Free Gel Moisturizer. Follow with a good primer, which creates a smooth base for building the rest of the look.” To ensure a “bridal glow” throughout the day, mix an illuminating moisturizer with foundation. Consider the amount of coverage your face needs, and layer it as needed.
Have a professional wax and shape your eyebrows early in the week. When selecting eye shadows, consider a blend of warm and cool color palettes. “Soft, shimmery neutrals (cream, golf, bronze, mauve, taupe and grey) work well for a natural look.” Use a water-resistant eyeliner in brown or bronze to define the upper lash line. Play up pretty eyes with false lashes and waterproof mascara.
Bring out a bridal blush with gel or cream products in a peachy pink shade. A soft sweep of mineralized blush over the cheeks sets the look. “I love MAC Dainty.” For a more sun-kissed look, bronzer can be used instead. Use a highlighting product just above the cheek. Finish with a soft veil of mineralized powder.
Lipsticks have made a comeback this year. Start with a lip moisturizer, then build a soft layer of color with lipstick or lipgloss. Use a lip pencil to prevent feathering on darker shades of red, but ditch it for lighter pinks.
This season, ‘natural beauty’ is the hot look for brides. The colors used in creating a natural look enhance natural features without overpowering them, and play up the natural light and shadow points that fall on the contours of the face. A combination of pinks, shimmery neutrals and bronze tones work best.
• Smoky eyes are popular. The techniques used to create a natural look can be used as a base for a smoky eye, then enhanced with a dark, dramatic eyeliner and a pop of bold color. If this look is chosen, keep in mind that cheek and lip colors need to be adjusted to balance the dramatic focus of the eyes.
• Bold lip colors in pinks, oranges and reds are hot for spring and summer. Whether you choose a lipstick or gloss (or a combination of the two), keep in mind that a moisturizing base will help the color stay longer. Dark lip stains can be kept pristine with a lip liner.
• Professional tip: use a setting spray over the face to ensure that your look remains fresh throughout the ceremony and reception.
• Before the big day, prepare a touch-up kit that includes lipstick or lip gloss, blotting papers and powders. Throw in a few bobby pins and a travel-size bottle of hairspray, as well.
• Enlist a professional makeup artist to ensure that you look your best on the big day. About a month before the ceremony, sit down for a trial run to determine which colors and products will best reflect your natural features.
Written by Natalie Wearstler • Makeup by Jackie Neal • Photo by Bradley Stookey • Hair by Casey Powell • Model Tyler Hill • Dress from Park Avenue Bridal