On the big day all eyes will be on the bride and it’s our job as wedding hair and makeup artists to stay calm and make sure she looks and feels totally fabulous! We all know that it’s not really about the groom and even the wedding dress is just an accessory…
The bride is the main feature of the day – not to put you under too much pressure!
With beautiful wedding hair and makeup either natural, glamorous or somewhere in between, you can help your bride to feel confident and gorgeous.
On the big day she’s going to be excited and a bit nervous, so applying make-up and styling hair is only part of your job. You need to make sure that she is ready on time, whilst helping her stay to relaxed and calm.
Your Wedding Hair & Makeup Kit
Make sure you allow plenty of time for your journey – factor in time for parking and make sure you have all your kit ready the night before.
Wedding Hair Kit: Always have plenty of hairspray, grips and hair pins, a selection of donuts, snag free elastic bands and a pair of scissors – not for cutting the hair, but to cut labels off dresses.
Bridal Makeup kit: Don’t run out of anything! Make sure you have the right colour lipstick and a good mattifying product such as Cosmetics a la carte Matte Miracle and some mattifying papers. I love the Kleenex shine off papers, so if she has oily skin give her a couple to pop in her bag.
I learned very early not to cut down my hair or makeup kit down on the day of the wedding; If you just take the items you need you might find you come unstuck when an aunty or even the MOB decides she would like her hair or makeup doing after all!
Whatever the size of your bridal party it’s your job to make sure everything runs smoothly on the wedding day.
Once you’ve done the trial run you can make an action plan. Make things easy for yourself by using one of our wedding hair and makeup planners – essential for every wedding hair stylist!
Make sure you can re-create the hair style just the way she likes it with our detailed records sheets. Taking photos of the hair style only shows you the end result – in order to recreate the style to perfection you need to know how you got there…
- Take step by step notes
- Work out the timetable (so that everyone is ready on time!)
- Keep it all on one handy sheet
- Each plan has a carbon-less copy sheet below – one copy for you to keep & one for your client.
Buy our wedding planners here:
First thing’s first – find out the time of the wedding
Once she’s chosen a style for her hair and a look for her makeup you can start the process of working out the timings for the day. Whatever you do, don’t let the bride decide what time she needs to be ready! It is your job to know best.
When you know the time of the wedding, find out how long it is going to take her to get there. Remember, if it’s a long drive and she’s going to be in a vintage car, they tend to take longer to get from A to B.
If she’s having a church wedding brides can usually get away with arriving a few minutes late, but if she is having a civil ceremony she will need to arrive 10-15 minutes before her ceremony for her interview with the registrar.
Next, you need to allow some time for the photographer to take a few photos. I usually allow approximately half and hour for this and then she’ll need an additional 10-15 minutes to get dressed. Factor in a bit of time to pop to the loo, have a glass of champagne and stop to take breather whilst she has a look at her flowers when the florist arrives.
Timings on the big day
For a 2 o’clock wedding with a 15 minute journey time you need to have her ready for 1pm, ready to step into her dress.
With this is as a guideline, your timings for the bride and 2 bridesmaids (with just hair for the bridesmaids) would look something like this:
7.30 arrive and set up
8.00 Curl Brides hair
8.30 Curl BM 2
9.00 Curl BM 1
9.30 style BM 2 hair
10.15 style BM 1 Hair
11.00 bride’s makeup
12.00 style bride’s hair
1.00 ready to get dressed
Once the bridal party has seen the timetable they will understand why we have to start so early and the bridesmaids are more likely to arrive on time!
Working with the Bridesmaids
It’s always a good idea to ask the bridesmaids to collect a few images of styles they like beforehand – so you can get a bit of an idea of what they are likely to want on the day and it’s worth finding out a little bit about the bridesmaids hair type in advance. For example, does anyone have an incredible amount of thick, heavy hair? If so, you can allow yourself more time to work with it.
If you are just starting out, it would be a good idea to ask them to send you a few images a week or so in advance, so you can practice the styles in advance and build your confidence before the big day.
You probably won’t have had the chance to do a trial for the bridesmaids, so this may be the first time you have been able to work on their hair.
Watch some of our quick style videos on Facebook to get some helpful hints and ideas for quick bridesmaid styles.
Dealing with Difficult bridesmaids
Stick to your timetable! Don’t allow yourself to be thrown of course by a difficult bridesmaid who doesn’t realise that this is not all about her.
If you feel you are running short of time and you haven’t quite finished her hair and makeup hold your nerve! Just let her know that you have to start the bride now but that you will come back to her when the bride is ready. Reassure her that you will make sure she is happy but let her know that you have to start the bride.
She’ll no doubt spend the next hour in front of the mirror and invariably will be almost sorted by the time you get her back in front of you anyway!