Borrowed and Blue: Bridal makeup

One of the questions I get asked most during my first meeting with potential clients, and again throughout their engagement, is what to do regarding wedding day hair and makeup. Before I can even bat an eyelash, I hand over the business card of Erin Infantino from Simply Gorgeous by Erin. But before I get to talking raving about her, let me explain why.

 

Me? I’m a DIY girl. Tried and true, if it is possible to do it myself, I do. For better and for worse. I have been known to attempt to sew dresses (always a epic failure), Adam and I completely remodeled our Colorado home ourselves, and I will forever take pictures of restaurant menus and food so that I can try to recreate it at home. When it comes to makeup, I can hold my own. I’m no pro, by any means, but I can certainly rock out a few looks that flatter my face. My whole life I always thought I would do my own makeup for my wedding, because why would I pay that much money for someone to do something I could do myself? And then I started photographing weddings. And I saw many a bride who wanted to do her own makeup so that it looks “more natural” and because she didn’t want “a caked on face”. I’ve seen equally as many trust their best friend who is in cosmetology school to do it. And come out with a striking resemblance to Tammy Faye Bakker (look her up). After a lot of years in the wedding industry with some truly disastrous makeup experiences, and having to fix the makeup of one too many brides, I very highly recommend and sometimes strongly insist on my clients having their makeup done by a pro. Enter Erin. I met Erin a little over two years ago when she worked together with me on a styled shoot. For the last 15 months, we’ve been inseparable as we have worked together on countless glamour shoots for my other brand, Alicia Ann Couture. Erin is, is my opinion, the absolute best makeup artist that CT has to offer (and she travels, too!). Connecticut has a LOT of fantastic makeup artists but, without fail, Erin always impresses me with how she is able to make our clients look like themselves, but a softer, more delicate and feminine version of themselves. I am super excited that a lot of our brides are using her to do their makeup this year and I know they will love her! As for me? I decided to forego the idea of doing my own wedding makeup, knowing that it was quite possible that things would be stressful enough or that I would want to make it so perfect, it would end up being a total fail. On the morning of my wedding, Erin sat me down in her chair, spoke some calming words to me (our wedding day was, in fact, very stressful), and made me look like the best version of myself I’ve ever seen.

So, I give you….

Here are the top 5 tips/reasons for hiring a pro on your wedding day.

1. The stress
This is the one day you should be able to relax and get pampered. Regardless of how much planning goes into your wedding day, there are always last minute decisions that need to be made. An on-location makeup artist will come to your location of choice, and will help create an atmosphere where you feel totally relaxed and able to make level headed decisions. Because, let’s be honest, how often does eye liner go on straight when you have a million other thoughts running through your head?

2. Look your very best!
A good makeup artist knows how to work with your facial shape, eye color, etc., to give you the very best results. I once had a client whose cosmetology friend did their makeup. One of the bridesmaids had hot pink eye shadow on, with their lavender dresses. Any experienced professional will know never to do that. A good makeup artist, like Erin, can contour your face to accentuate great cheek bones, perfectly plump up your lips, properly cover that last minute pimple, fix your brows, and make your eyes *pop*…without putting hot pink shadow on them.

3. You Get What You Pay For
This is true for many areas of a wedding but one, for sure, is with makeup. This is one area that I do not recommend price shopping. Flowers? Yes. Invitations? Yes. Favors? Definitely. But the way you look is not one of them. Because the way you look directly affects how you feel and you will never forget how you felt on your wedding day. My wedding day was a logisitcal nightmare but one thing I’ve said since then is that I felt so beautiful. How you feel will also be reflected in your pictures and in how you interact with all your guests. Trust me on this one. Pay for a quality makeup artist. It will be the best $175 you spend on your wedding day.

4. Camera Ready
It is such a key thing for me for brides to have their makeup done by a professional and a specialist, not just someone who “knows a bit about makeup.” It saves a lot of time in post processing of having to clone out blemishes, tone down their “orange” foundation that was the wrong shade, etc. Makeup also photographs a few shades lighter, so a good makeup artists knows how to compensate for that without overdoing it. They can also suggest false lashes, which make the world of a difference in photos, as well as other things that make you camera-ready.

5. The Trial
When choosing a makeup artist, I can’t insist enough on doing a trial. Through a trial, you’ll be able to see how the makeup looks and feels on you. You’ll be able to see that it lasts all day and night without melting off, and will give you the confidence to trust your makeup artist on your wedding day. I highly recommend scheduling your trial on the same day as you engagement session, that way you look and feel fantastic for your session, as well as knowing how the makeup looks in photographs.

With all that being said, I asked Erin, the pro, a few questions regarding wedding day makeup:

1. Why would you say it’s important to have your makeup done for you on your wedding day?

Whether you’re Grace Under Fire or a Nervous Nellie, your wedding day will cause jitters. Why not let someone do it for you so your quaking hand won’t give you a crooked eye line? The main reason? Contrary to popular belief; it’s not about the dress; it’s about you. When you walk down the aisle, your groom is fixated on your eyes. Your guest is watching your facial expressions. Your photographer is capturing the connecting and emotions between you and your spouse. You want your face to look gorgeous. Gorgeous is up to you – however you define it – glamorous, natural, retro. By gorgeous I mean you on your best day ever. Let a professional artist bring out your best. We understand the curves of the face and the undertones that work best with certain colors to make you glow.

2. Talk to us about trials. What is the purpose of them? Are they necessary?

Have you ever bought a dress for a special event without trying it on before buying? Have you gone to put said dress on 2 hours before that event only to see that it looks awful? I have. That’s when I panic. Don’t do this to yourself on your wedding day. A trial is for many things and mainly for 1. To create the dream wedding day look of your desire and 2. To see if you “click” with your makeup artist or hair stylist. If your artist works a miracle on your face but is rude and makes you anxious that’s not the right artist for you. All areas must click.

3. Tell us why you do what you do, and why you are so passionate about it.

I make women see themselves how I see them. I also listen to them and create what they want to feel through makeup. I want to make a woman feel like she can walk into a room of 300 guests and feel confident and amazing. I do makeup. My team does makeup and hair. What we really do is make women feel gorgeous. I’m passionate about people, especially women, and genuine feelings. The end result of the look of joy on a woman’s face when she first looks in the mirror is what I look forward to every single time.

4. How would you describe your signature wedding day look?

I don’t know that I have a signature wedding day look as I try to give each woman her own signature look. But I’ve been told I make skin look amazing and eyes have always been my thing. The bigger I make them look, the better. I can take the smallest, closest set of eyes and make them look twice their size without looking like an over done doll.

5. What are your 3 must-have every day products?

This is probably not what you’re expecting to hear from a makeup artist. My numero uno must have is Aquaphor. I hate dry lips and this is the only thing that melts in without being sticky and lasts. My second favorite is concealer. I have a vibrant 2 1/2 year old daughter and running a team of 8 women is a 24/7 job. My third favorite is mascara. Ohhh, mascara; how I love thee. Concealer and mascara make anyone’s eyes look more awake. Fake it til you make it right?

 

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