20 Mar 2012
Bridal Makeup Trials: What to Remember
Today I had a bridal makeup trial with one of my clients, Sandra. Above you can see the look we came up with together. I thought I'd go into detail how I go about working with clients, and what I feel needs to happen during the bridal makeup trial.
Previous to the appointment I talked to Sandra on her overall wishes for the look, if she had something specific in mind. Some brides will be very concrete about their wishes and have pictures from magazines to show you, others might be completely clueless and need your guidance to pick out something appropriate. In this case, it's helpful to have a peek at the wedding dress if one has already been purchased, and any jewelry and accessories that will be worn on that day. You should also get an overall feel for the bride's personality to see if she would prefer a more bolder, dramatic look, or something very understated.
In Sandra's case, she had a basic idea of what she wanted. She told me she wanted her look to be inspired by Arab makeup, but without the harsh typical eyeliner and sharp corners. She wanted the colors to be a bit more pronounced than normal, with a strong crease blend, but the overall look should still be soft and flattering. She wasn't too specific about which colors she preferred, just that she didn't want any bright bold ones. She also told me she's getting eyelash extensions for the wedding, and she would be removing her nose ring.
Sandra arrived at my house (I prefer to do trial runs at my place), and over a cup of coffee we went on the Internet together and looked at some Arab makeup pictures. I had already got an idea of what she wanted, but I needed to figure out a few details. Together we decided an overall softer look would be more flattering, and more suited to her features and her dress. Then I showed her my palettes to see what colors she liked most, but in this case she relied mostly on my judgement to pick what looks good together. I showed her a few combinations of flattering shades in both matte and pearl finish, and then came up with the look above.
During a trial run it's also a good idea to try out different things. For example, you can see she's wearing two different colored liners on her waterline, and I used different blushes on each cheek. We also did two lip variations until we decided on this one. It's a good time to see what works and what looks nicer for the big day.
I then proceeded to do the makeup on her in natural daylight close to a window, as that will be the condition which she will be photographed in. It's also the best place to make sure the foundation is perfectly matched and evenly blended into the neck and bust line. During the process I showed her a mirror a few times so she could see how things were progressing. Try to make it enjoyable and relaxing for your client; I played some nice music in the background, burned some home fragrance oil, and made sure everything was clean and tidy.
After all the makeup was done, I gave her a mirror to go outside and see how it looked. I asked her if there was anything she would want different on her wedding day, which liner she preferred, etc. Take note of any changes that you will need to make on the big day - Sandra said she wanted a deeper color lipliner and less highlighting around the cheekbones.
Remember that even though you are the makeup artist, your paying client makes the final decision. You can give suggestions and guidance on what looks best, but in the end if they want something that you personally don't think looks good, it's their call. If they want to wear hot pink lips with dark smokey eyes, then just follow their wishes and try to make it as flattering as possible.
Finally I made a Word document of all the products I used on her and placement, so that I will remember exactly on the wedding day. Make a list for your client of products they might need to purchase for touch-ups (unless you are on-hand throughout the wedding), for example blotting powder, lip products, etc. Discuss the final arrangements of the wedding day, how much time you need and when and where to arrive. Also be sure to have your financial aspects in order at this time, such as down payments, contracts, etc. You don't want to be talking money to a stressed out bride on her wedding day! This is also to protect yourself, to make sure you get paid. If you are doing makeup on other members of the bridal party, be sure to discuss that in advance and schedule enough time. Give your client your business card if she needs to contact you, and be sure you have their contact details.
That's it! Happy makeup-ing! I'll be sure to post some final pictures of Sandra's makeup on her big day!