Building Your Online Bridal Hair Portfolio: How to Take Instagram-Worthy Photos

We all know that these days, our online presence is integral to having a successful business. Brides love to flick through magazines, but when it comes to finding bridal hair inspiration and booking their bridal hair and makeup artist it is now almost always off the back of an amazing online portfolio and lots of 5* reviews.

Instagram is the perfect platform for bridal hairstylists, essentially offering a shop window for the world to browse. The only problem is, there is an awful lot of competition you’ll be going up against. This doesn’t mean that you can’t make Instagram work for your business, it just means that you’ve got to go at it like a pro and really make the most of all it has to offer.

instagram

As an image-based platform, your Instagram photos MUST be exceptional. Taking clean, clear, bright images with a strong sense of your brand is the first step you must take to create an online portfolio that gets those all-important views, follows and shares.

As a bridal hairstylist, you will have loads of gorgeous things worth taking photos of: your amazing hairstyles; accompanying bridal makeup; beautiful hair accessories and bridal wear and not to mention those stunning brides in their fabulous wedding locations (just make sure that you get their permission first!). It’s just a matter of knowing how to take those photos and edit them in such a way that it makes a winning image.

Fortunately, there is a science behind this. You don’t have to be the best photographer in the world with a fancy photography kit to take Instagram-worthy photos for your online portfolio, you just need a bit of insider info, which we’re going to share with you in today’s blog.

Use these tips that are easy enough for anyone to follow to build an online bridal hair portfolio on Instagram that will make a huge difference to your business…

instagram

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instagram

Make a Plan

Going at Instagram all slap-dash and spontaneous might seem like a great idea and it’s fine if that’s way to do things on your personal account, but your business account, as with anything work-related, is always far more effective with a proper plan of action.

Before you even set about uploading your first post on your business Instagram, you’ll seriously benefit from figuring out what you’re doing there, who you’re targeting, and what your brand is about.

Even an individual hairstylist or makeup artist should consider themselves a brand to grab the attention of your target audience. Think big, be big!

Once you’ve done this and your stream is full steam ahead, you may even want to consider preparing and scheduling your posts, rather than just doing it as and when. This way, you can make sure that you keep in line with your plan at all times and you never miss a valuable day of Instagramming!

instagram

Always Well Lit

One way to make sure that your photo looks terrible is to take a snap in poor lighting. Don’t do it! There’s simply no reason to and it never looks good.

You don’t need to have a full studio set-up to take beautifully lit images; often natural lighting is the best source of light there is. If you’re taking a photo of a client to put on your Instagram, ask their permission first of all and then ask them to step into a well lit space, whether that’s at a window or outside.

Your chance to draw in potential clients on Instagram comes down to what your photo looks like as a tiny thumbnail in-amongst all the other pictures and a dull, dark, poor quality images simply isn’t something that anyone is going to want to take a closer look at.

Do you work justice and take a few extra minutes to take a photo worth posting, otherwise it’s really not worth taking atall.

Thinking about doing a bridal hair photo-shoot?

Read our expert tips on how to do it right

Embrace Negative Space 

Just as an image needs to be well lit to capture the eye on Instagram, it also needs to be appealing to look at and often background clutter is enough to make people scroll on. A messy photo can be hard to take in and it certainly won’t help to highlight your beautiful styles.

A gorgeous backdrop or even a behind the scenes shot can work really well, but you’ll notice on some of the most successful Instagram feeds that images with very little going on in it other than the main subject are frequently the most popular. This is down to the magic of negative space.

Embracing negative space basically means not shying away from empty areas in a photo. Try standing your client in front of a plain white wall, or completely clear the space around them for a more aesthetically pleasing image. This also works really well for product and tool shots, if that is something you would like to try.

instagram

Use Editing Apps

If you think that your favourite Instagrammers upload photos fresh out of their camera or phone, think again. It is very rare that a fabulous image is free from editing. It might be just some very subtle tweaking of the light balance, details  and contrast or it could be quite a bit more.

Don’t freak out if you’re not a photoshop whizz-kid. Thanks to a bucket-load of nifty apps that you can now download straight to your phone, photo editing is easy.

We love Snapseed for it’s straightforward, user friendly tools that can transform a photo in a matter of minutes. Pinpoint areas to light up or dim down, bring out the vibrancy or add a filter or frame for a fun effect.

instagram

Want to know more about how to win at Instagram?

Read our business Instagram tips…

Be Consistent

Following on from our point on editing your images, when doing this, do your best to keep your editing consistent throughout your Instagram feed.

Take a look at Instagram streams you follow and observe how all of their photos have a strong look carried through them. This might be down to their photography style or, more commonly, it is down to keeping their editing choices the same throughout.

Throwing in random filters for each post can leave your feed looking haphazard and messy. This is not something that people enjoy looking at! You need to consider your stream as a whole, like a book or a shop window and dress it accordingly.

Choose a signature look and stick with it for best results.

instagram

Use Your Phone Features

Aside from editing apps, your phone actually comes with some clever in-built features that are designed to help you take a better photo. There’s nothing complicated about it and they’re well worth using, so start today!

The latest iPhones have a portrait mode which will give you fabulously crisp clear images of the hair and makeup and will actually blur out the background so even clutter in the background looks good!

Alternatively, turn on your grid function. This brings up a square grid whenever you go to take a photo, which means that you can line up your subject in a far more symmetrical way or draw attention to bits you want to stand out. Pro photographers will tell you that keeping the main point of interest right in the centre or in a corner surrounded by negative space is the best way to utilise this.

Burst mode is another good one to try out if you’d like to capture some action shots at an event. This feature will allow you to use a fast shutter speed to take lots of quick images – you can then choose to best moment to save and use.

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instagram

Keep it Simple

Over-edited shots can be very unappealing, particularly if you’re not that great at doing it. Be conservative with filters and how strong you make them – less is more.

Maintaining a more natural look with subtle changes to bring out the very best in a photo is the best way to go for a stunning Instagram feed.

instagram

Practice & Play

Just like we say with bridal hairstyling, practice makes perfect, so always be taking photos. If you want to improve a skill, there’s no better way that by playing around with it, having fun and doing it every day.

Make taking creative photos part of your daily routine and take time to really look at your favourite Instagram feeds and emulate the look they’re using. Eventually, you will develop your own style, but experimenting with looks that you know you like and trying to understand what makes them work is really helpful.

Practice, practice, practice! You’ll get better all the time.

Practice Makes Perfect!

Keep practicing your bridal hair skills…

instagram

Look for Moments

If you’re not used to taking photos, you might find yourself waiting for a shot to present itself to you, but really it’s down to you to go looking for the moments.

Switch on your creative brain and always keep an eye out for Instagram-worthy moments – something that tells a story, something that shows emotions or something that just looks gorgeous!

Use your eyes before the lens and consider the best composition, lighting and angle before taking a picture. This will help you take less throw-away photos and more worth using, making your time choosing which to upload far more efficient.

The more you train yourself to do this, the easier it will become. Start looking at the world through a photographer’s eyes. You’ll be amazed at how quickly your skill develops.

Dealing With Difficult Clients – The Bridal Hairstylist Business Guide

As a bridal hairstylist or makeup artist, most of the people you’ll encounter will be happy, excited and in good spirits, which is part of what makes the job great! However, just as with any job out there, you will come across a client every so often who makes life difficult.

With a wedding coming up or on the big day itself, tensions are often running high and the mission to create the best hair and makeup that someone has ever had, under strict time constraints, is certainly a challenge. At some point, it is almost guaranteed that dealing with difficult clients is something you’re going to want to know about.

It might be that your bride-to-be is super stressed out; maybe she’s got her heart set on a look that just isn’t possible to create with her hair type; perhaps she hasn’t got a clue what she wants but whatever you’re doing just isn’t it….or it could just be that she’s not all that nice! Whatever the reason for the trouble, it’s up to you as the professional in that situation to diffuse the problem quickly, calmly and effectively.

dealing with difficult clients

You may describe yourself as a ‘people person’, as most of us who get into being a bridal hair stylist or makeup artist partly do so because we love the sociable aspect of it, but that doesn’t necessarily make you the best at dealing with tricky situations or complaints. If this is something that plays on your mind as one of your greatest work-related fears, we’re here to help!

There are ways that you can cope with a business confrontation and even keep the client, if you play your cards right…

At the end of the day, so much about making it in this industry comes down to positive reviews through word of mouth, so whatever happens, you want your clients to all go back to their friends having had a good experience.

This doesn’t mean that you always have to sit back and take it if things get tough, but having the emotional, psychological and professional toolkit to bring high tension back down to earth is key. It is very unlikely that you’ll ever come face to face with anything really confrontational, but it’s always good to know how to keep things on an even keel.

Just as you need to be equipped with all sorts of styles and techniques for creating a huge variety of bridal looks, you also need to be ready for all situations and know how to keep your head cool.

dealing with difficult clients

Be Prepared For Anything!

Keep Pam in your pocket with our online course…

dealing with difficult clients

Take Complaints Seriously, But Not Personally

When dealing with difficult clients you’ve got to keep your feelings, and your ego, at bay. As soon as you get emotionally caught up in a problem, keeping your cool and maintaining professional equilibrium gets much harder; so if you receive a complaint from a client the first thing to do is to step out of it meaning anything about you.

If your client is unhappy with her hair or makeup or anything else for that matter, this does not have to reflect on you as a person and it doesn’t make you bad at your job. Rather than taking it personally and taking a confidence hit, which then in turn might well lead to you going on the defensive, try to avoid justifying your position and instead control the situation by offering a solution with a happy ending.

dealing with difficult clients

Practice Reflective Listening 

Listening to a client’s upset and replying with ‘I understand, but…’ can lead to further frustration from your bride, as the ‘but’ clearly tells her that you are not understanding what she is so wound up about. Instead of this, reflective listening allows the client to feel as though you really do understand what they are saying rather than just offering an almost impersonal response and if you haven’t got it quite right, it gives them the chance to be clear – which can often make things much easier! Miscommunication has an awful lot to answer for.

To practice reflective listening when dealing with difficult clients, what you need to do is interpret your client’s words and body language and respond by reflecting what you have understood back to your bride, politely, which then allows for them to say ‘yes, that’s right’ or ‘no, let me try saying that in a different way’.

Communication is Key…

Nail Your Bridal Trial run with these top tips…

Keep Calm and Carry On

Keeping calm is of course extremely important when it comes to dealing with difficult clients, so this needs to be your first priority. The point we made above about not taking complaints personally will really help with this, so go from there.

People will often mirror the emotions of the other person, so if you get angry it’s likely that your client will get angry too, but if you remain calm, courteous and respectful it is far more likely that they will tone down to do the same.

Behaving in a rude or disrespectful way is always going to reflect very badly on you and your business, so refrain from name-calling, finger-pointing or saying or doing anything that might be used against you.

Your best bet is to keep a calm, professional yet assertive tone and keep it friendly. Falling prey to emotion in tense situations is all too easy, but if you’re reading this now then hopefully if and when the time comes you’ll be a little more prepared! Have empathy, try to understand where they are coming from and always aim to respond with kindness.

dealing with difficult clients

Lose the Fear

Fear of what might come of a negative review can lead to big problems when dealing with difficult clients.

If you’re facing confrontation when dealing with a difficult client, you wouldn’t be the only bridal hairstylist in the world to panic and instantly start imagining all the terrible things that might come of this.

As long as you remain calm and professional at all times, you’ve got nothing to worry about. It is only when a customer feels poorly treated that they’ll go off on a rampage, so if you do your best to resolve whatever the problem is and leave them feeling heard it’s likely that they will calm down very quickly. It may even turn out that it reflects well on you, if you play your cards right!

dealing with difficult clients

Prevent Problems Where Possible

It is always better to avoid problems altogether by being clear and honest from the get-go, rather than trying to fix it later. If you’re presented with a client who is demanding you do the impossible, then make sure you explain right from the start that you won’t be able to do that and why.

Offer some positive advice and let them know what you can do with their hair, maybe suggest getting some clip in extensions in order to achieve the look they’re after.

Don’t ever lead them to believe you can offer something if you can’t.

This point also applies to situations such as if you’re running late or your assistant hasn’t turned up. Tell them as soon as you know – call and give a heads up if you’re going to get there half and hour later than planned and always apologise in this scenario! It is more likely than not that your bride will be fine about it, but she will almost certainly be upset if you just don’t show when you say you will.

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Good Record Keeping

Keep your clients happy.

After the trial run make detailed plans of the wedding hairstyle and/or bridal makeup you have created. It is not enough to take photos on the trial. Photos only show the finished result, when it comes to re-creating the perfect style on the wedding day you need to remember how you got there. You’ll need to remember every detail from the trial run, from exactly what hair prep you used, to what products you used and whether you need to cover her ears.

Have a look at Pam’s wedding planners and make sure you get every detail right.

wedding hair

Communicate Clearly

Try not to mince your words or blurt out things you don’t mean when dealing with a difficult client. Think things through carefully before opening your mouth and above all else, do not ‘react’!

Be clear about everything right from the start.

From pricing, to times to the way things are going to pan out on the day, lay it all out so that your client can’t misunderstand. Before saying anything to them, make sure that you have a clear idea of everything you’re doing too – winging it does not work well when you’re a bridal hairstylist. Get your head around it all first so that when you’re giving vital information, it is accurate.

Clear communication is a valuable skill in all areas of life, so you can start practicing this right away – don’t just wait until you’re faced with a problem.

dealing with difficult clients

Always Do Your Best Work

No matter how you feel about a client, it is your job to always do the work work you can. Remember that you’re being paid for a service, so put your all into it! If you know that you’ve done your very best, then if you are faced with a complaint you will know wholeheartedly that you could not have done it any differently when dealing with difficult clients.

Always have a good chat to your client before you start trying styles out on them and remember to keep an eye on their body language throughout, as often this speaks louder than words. Some brides are quite shy about telling you what they do or don’t like, so keep asking questions as you style to give them the opportunity to speak up before it’s too late.

dealing with difficult clients

Don’t Be Afraid to Say Goodbye

Sometimes dealing with difficult clients just isn’t worth it. If you’ve done your best, you’ve tried to resolve a problem and you’ve remained professional but your client still isn’t happy, it’s not the worst thing in the world to cut them loose. It doesn’t happen very often but sometimes a bridal hairstylist and a client just aren’t right for each-other and it’s better to nip it in the bud than wait until the going gets tough.

There’s no need to be rude about it, you can just say that you feel as though you can’t give them what they’re after and maybe you could even make a recommendation of another bridal hairstylist they can get in touch with that might be able to help. Sometimes it’s better to say goodbye to the client and the work than fight for something that just isn’t meant to be.

5 New Years Resolution to Boost Your Career as a Bridal Hair Stylist

Just because we’re in February now doesn’t mean that we’re going to let you off no sticking to your new year’s resolutions! We’re good like that.

Here at Create Beautiful Hair, we’re not so keen on the old half-hearted diets and expensive gym memberships that never get used, for us, it’s all about what we can do to grow our business and continue to thrive as a Bridal Hair Stylist.

Knowing what to do to help your career progress can be a tricky one. You might be just starting out or perhaps you feel as though you’re ready to expand into bigger and better things. Whatever stage you’re at, it’s always good to be thinking ahead, from knowing all the hottest trends to picking up more and more work, so we’re going to let you in on all of our best industry secrets to keep your business booming – even during the quiet, winter months…

bridal hair stylist

Get Online

First thing’s first: if you’re not online, get online.

By that, we mean a website, a Facebook business page, a business Instagram account…the lot! If you’re not accessible on the world wide web, not only are you going to be impossible to discover but clients already considering you will lose faith that you’re their best choice.

Having a really sharp, professional looking website with all the necessary info on helps to build trust and reliability before a bride even makes first contact. If you don’t have a website, or at the very least a business page on Facebook with lots of great reviews, then a bride is going to start wondering if you’re experience enough or even ‘legit’.

bridal hair stylist

Get gorgeous photos up in an easy-to-navigate online portfolio, list your prices, make sure that your contact details are clear and simple to find and provide some information about yourself too – your brides-to-be want to get a feel of their bridal hair stylist and know that they are qualified, friendly and confident.

 

TOP TIP:

Online reviews are crucially important these days, so if you haven’t got any of those yet it’s time to get to work getting some out there! Create some stunning styles for family and friends and ask them to leave reviews on your Facebook page and on Google+ reviews too.

Don’t be shy about getting in touch with old clients either to ask them to put one up as well. Send an email with the links they need to take them right to the review page to make the process easy as pie.

Invest in Yourself

Anyone who works hard and sticks at their passion WILL get a ‘big break’ at some point, but it can take a little while to get there. The most important thing you can do as you make your journey as a Bridal Hair Stylist is to invest in yourself and be learning, continually.

Always be practicing, always be discovering new styles and techniques. Our Online Bridal Hair Course is a fantastic way to keep your head in the game even when things are a bit quiet. You can spend your free time brushing up on everything from correct kit care to the perfect blow-dry. Never rest on your laurels – if you want this, you’ve got to put the time in.

bridal hair stylist

Always Be Learning

Online Bridal Hair Course

Go to Events

Hiding yourself away and hoping that the work will just come to you is not great business practice. If you want to be a successful Bridal Hair Stylist you’ve got to put yourself out there, get known and if you get the opportunity, show off your skills!

Wedding fairs can be an excellent place to source new clients, so start researching upcoming events and aim to get booked into at least one. Attending the big hair events such as Pro Hair Live and the Bridal Exhibition is invaluable too – pop along, take in some seminars and catwalks and mingle. Make those contacts!

bridal hair stylist
bridal hair stylist

Be Pro-active

Even if you’re struggling to get paid work, don’t be down about it, just use that time to assist wherever possible (this often will lead to paid work!) and stay focused when you do. There’s no point going along to work but not paying enough attention to learn anything: watch how to lead stylist does things, stay on top of what products and tools he or she might need next and be brave enough to jump in if they ask you to.

As a Bridal Hair Stylist in such a competitive industry, it’s up to you to think outside the box to get more work. Get in touch with PR companies, magazines, other hair stylists or makeup artists and event teams and ask if they are looking for a hair stylist. You never know – you might make a career-changing call at exactly the right time!

Pam Wrigley’s Tips on How to Stay Busy During the Off-Season

It’s part and parcel with being a bridal hair and makeup artist that there will be, more often than not, an off-season at some point during the year. For most of us, and many other businesses out there, this is during that lull after Christmas and New Year when suddenly all of the excitement of Party Season calms down and there’s not an awful lot going on.

For newbies in the business, this can be catastrophic. Having just got off the ground as a bridal hair and makeup artist only to be plunged back into the land of no-work is not something that anyone wants and understandably, this is one of the biggest fears we hear about when our lovely students are thinking of taking the leap and going pro.

Over time, as you become more established within the industry, you’ll find that off season isn’t so terrible (there are weddings and many other events on all year round, after all!) but for those of you a little afraid of what off-season might bring (or rather, might not bring) we’re got some expert tips for you from the Create Beautiful Hair founder, award-winning bridal hair and makeup artist Pam Wrigley…

How to stay busy during Off-Season:

off-season

Manage Your Diary

It might be a little late for this one now, but for 2018 make it a New Years Resolution to plan ahead and manage your diary with the Off-Season in mind.

Although you might not have many brides getting married in the early months of the year, springtime is very popular for weddings so book in loads of trial days for the time you know things are going to be quiet.

By doing this, you’ll not only keep a semi-steady flow of income and stay limber with those hair and makeup skills, but you’ll also be less likely to have a trial day clash with a day that you could be earning bigger bucks for on an actual wedding day or other job which are more likely to come about in summer.

Don’t be shy about suggested dates for the trial to your clients – they need to have it at some time, so why not when it benefits you?

off-season

Shop the Sales

Now here’s something we can ALL enjoy! Make the most of the amazing deals you see popping up post-Christmas and stock up on all the supplies you know you’re going to need for the rest of the year.

Yes, this can be expensive but it’s worth it in the long run if you can make a saving – and usually you can make a BIG saving!

Start coming up with a list now of all the bits and pieces you could do with so you’re ready to pounce as soon as the sales start.

Check Out Our Christmas Wish-List…

Take a Course

As a bridal hair and makeup artist, you’re only ever as good as the amount of time and effort you put into honing your skill, so use the quiet time of year to get your techniques up to scratch and learn all of the hottest new looks for the year ahead.

With all of the CBH courses now Habia endorsed, joining us on any of our 1 day, 2 day, 4 day or online courses will gain you invaluable CPD points, making you all the more qualified and desirable to higher end clients and amazing jobs.

Find out more about how earning Continuing Professional Development points can benefit you here.

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Stay in Touch

Don’t allow a lull in work to equal a lull in communication with other suppliers and professionals in the industry. Having great contacts really can make an enormous difference to a burgeoning career, so make an effort to keep in touch with any photographers, wedding venues, other hair and makeup artists, event planners and whoever else you meet on your travels.

If you’re worried about pestering, get in touch with something they’ll want to hear about! A blog can be a great tool, not only for boosting your online presence and reaching your relevant target audience, but also for talking about and linking to other suppliers in the industry and having them do the same in return.

Want a blog but don’t have time to write it? Get help from an SEO blogger who’s an expert in the wedding industry!

How to Get Your Facebook Business Page Working for You

facebook business page

Getting your Bridal Hair business online is great, but simply setting up your social media pages and hoping for the best isn’t going to get you very far. If you want to expand your reach and get your services out to the right audience, there’s a lot more to it…but where do you start?

Read this blog for expert advice on how to get your Facebook business page working for you and check back for more on Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter too!

On the final day of our Bridal Hair Courses Pam Wrigley lets her students in on all of the business secrets that have helped her to become one of the UKs top Bridal Hair & Makeup Artists.

If you’re an online student, this great advice is also readily available to access at your leisure in the form of tutorials and live webinars with our favourite business consultant, Richard Johnson! But for those of you who have yet to become a Create Beautiful Hair student, the business side of things might be leaving you feeling a little perplexed – especially when it comes to social media.

Facebook can be a fantastic tool for both up and coming and established businesses and freelancers hoping to promote their work and services, but if you’ve set up your page and you’ve yet to see the benefit, there’s probably a good reason for this.

We collaborated with Richard Johnson of Spinach Consultancy to pick his brains on how to really make the most of your Facebook business page…

Get Your Facebook Business Page Working for You

Strictly Business

 

Many people fall at the first hurdle when it comes to setting up their Facebook business page, leaving them feeling at a loss when the likes don’t start rolling in. First thing’s first with your Facebook page: it HAS to be strictly business.

Setting up a personal page for your services or simply using your existing personal account to promote your work just isn’t going to cut it – if you want Facebook to work for you as a marketing tool, you’ll need to set yourself up with a business page in the first instance.

Lots of you Bridal Hair & Makeup Artists out there are just a tad tech-phobic, but there’s really no need! Setting up a Facebook business page is really easy:

 

  1. Log in to your personal Facebook account and open your profile page

  2. Click the ‘Pages’ header in the left navigation

  3. Click the ‘Create a Page’ button

  4. Select ‘Local Business’

  5. Follow the step-by-step instructions, filling in all of the info fields along the way

facebook business page

Focus on Branding

If you take a look at some of your favourite businesses Facebook pages that are successful, you’ll very quickly notice how sharp they all look! There’s no mistaking whos page you’ve landed on or what kind of service or product they offer and this is largely down to branding.

When you’re setting yourself up as a Bridal Hair Stylist, potential clients will see you as vastly more experienced and professional if your social media accounts, website, business cards and all images, flyers, posters etc have strong branding. This comes from having a great logo, a particular font that you use, a colour scheme and even filters or editing styles that you use for your photos.

Utilise the space you have on your Facebook business page to upload an amazing banner as your cover image; a fabulous photo of you, alone or with a client, or a striking logo as your profile picture; and images of your styles or you at work that represent the high-standard that you want to showcase.

blowdrying

5* Reviews

 

5* reviews are really, really important when it comes to setting up a successful Facebook business page. These reviews not only demonstrate to newcomers that you’re exactly the Bridal Hair & Makeup Artist that they need for their Big Day, they also help to bump your page up the search listings, just as SEO does for your website.

If you’re just starting out, offer to do hair for your friends and family in exchange for lots of 5* reviews and once you’re working, always ask your clients to review you if they’re happy! Brides have a lot on their plate, so often it’s best to send them over an email with a link to your page a week or two after their wedding day, giving them a nudge and making it really easy for them.

 

Amazing Photos

 

Keeping your Facebook business pages up to date with stunning photos of your work is a must. Read more about how to get amazing images on our blog ‘How to Take Amazing Photos for Your Social Media’

Use Facebook Ads

 

Advertising on Facebook by pushing your business page’s best posts, whether that’s beautiful images or a special offer, can be an excellent thing to do, but only when done right.

Don’t be fooled into thinking that the more people that see your page the better! If you select to promote your page in areas hundreds of miles from you, it’s unlikely that those seeing it are going to be interested or ever turn into paying clients. You’ll end up spending a lot more money for very little return. Instead, keep your target audience and area specific to your locale.

Often Facebook Ads works much better for small businesses or individuals if based in more rural areas or in towns with a smaller population. If you’re in a big city, like London or Manchester, you’re less likely to succeed with Facebook Ads as you’re a small fish in a big pond and you’ll be going up against well established competitors.

Love our tips on how to get your Facebook business page working for you? Revisit our blog next week for more on how to win at social media!

How to Take Amazing Photos for Your Social Media

To be a successful Bridal Hair and Makeup Artist, a great online presence is a must and gorgeous photos of your work on your social media plays a major part in that.

Gone are the days when having some fab shots in a physical portfolio was enough; now, that portfolio needs to be bigger and better than ever and it needs to be accessible for the world to see, especially on social media.

Social media has the potential to be a fantastic tool for anyone in business, particularly when a part of your business is producing amazing visual work, as it is for Bridal Hair and Makeup Artists. However, it’s no use just taking some quick snaps of your hair and makeup creations, sticking them up on your social media feeds and hoping for the best! There are certain rules you need to follow and techniques you must employ to get your photos really working for you.

Need Some Help with Your Portfolio?

come to our 4 Day Bridal Hair Course for a pro portfolio photoshoot!

How to Take Fantastic, Sharable Images

The first step to successful social media pages for your business is to have amazing images of your work that are good enough for people to want to like and better yet, share with their friends.

Blurry, dark and cluttered photos are not going to grab the attention of anyone and they’re certainly not going to showcase your work in any way shape or form, so it’s time to get savvy about what you’re posting. If you have a DSLR camera or the opportunity to collaborate with some skilled photographers, take full advantage of that!

 

The more professional-looking the image, the better; but if you are taking your own photos, here are some points to consider:

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Use Natural Light

Is your model well lit? Lighting can make a monumental difference to the overall result, so think about this before taking any photo. Ideally, you want to use as much natural light as possible to avoid any orange tones that room lighting can create, but avoid direct sunlight as this can make a photo very overexposed.

 

Think About Composition

It’s important to think about what is surrounding your subject, as well as the hair and makeup itself. Make sure that the space around is free from clutter and is pleasing to the eye. This is particularly important for Instagram images as you need your photo to look great even when it’s small and amongst many other photos.

When setting up your shot, try working with the ‘rule of thirds’ using gridlines on your phone or camera. This is a photographic composition principle that says an image should be broken down into thirds, both horizontally and vertically, so you have nine parts in total, making an image more balanced and pleasing to the viewer.

Beautiful Student Portfolio Images from our 4 Day Bridal Hair Course

Use Negative Space

Sometimes a close up photo of the detail in your work can be brilliant, but it doesn’t hurt to mix it up a bit with some images taken from further back that utilise negative space.

If you have your model against a clear, open background like the sky or a large wall, it can make your subject really stand out and draw people into your photo.

 

Don’t Zoom In

If you want a close up, get closer! Zooming in can result in a blurry image and that’s the last thing you want! Your photos need to be clean and crisp, so steer clear of the zoom and instead, try different angles until you find something you’re happy with.

 

Always Edit

The tiniest tweak of an image can take it from ‘good’ to ‘great’, but you have to do it right! You don’t have to be a pro with Photoshop to get an image looking amazing – there are some fantastic phone apps that are easy to use and can really transform a photo.

Snapseed is our favourite – a free app that gives you all the basics (contrast, brightness, saturation etc) as well as a few other nifty options. The ‘selective’ tool gives you the ability to choose an area of your photo to edit rather than having to change the whole thing, so you can brighten up the background or just the face or hair to bring the whole thing to life without overdoing it.

If you don’t feel confident using an editing tool where you have to do it manually, you can always fall back on trusty filters or apps like Instabeauty to automatically get things looks fab.

Interested in more great Bridal Hair & Makeup Artist business tips? Read our blog ‘Mastered Bridal Hair? Time To Get Paid! Our Tips on Going Pro…’ or catch up on our business tips Webinar.

Great Business Practice Tips for Bridal Hair & Makeup Artists

Following on from our last blog ‘The Trial Run: Make Sure Your Bride is Happy with Her Hair & Makeup’ where we gave you our top tips on how to have fantastic trial runs and secure those jobs, today we’re going to be covering great business practice that will really benefit you before even meeting your clients.

With so much competition out there, it’s more important than ever to be at the top of your game from the word go. Whether you’re constantly practicing new bridal styles to better yourself or getting back to emails faster and more efficiently than anyone else, there are always ways to make sure that you’re the bridal hair stylist and/or makeup artist that your client chooses.

Be Keen!

Always try to get back to emails and phone messages quickly, but take your time to make sure your emails come across as friendly and approachable.

A wedding day is such a personal thing, so it’s not just your portfolio that sells you.

Your personality is almost as important to brides as your skill, so give them the chance to get a feel for you as a person, not just another faceless bridal hair and makeup artist.

If you have a standard email reply that you send out to people, always makes sure you adapt it to answer any specific questions she may have asked so that she doesn’t feel like just another client.

Pay attention to detail and make her feel special, right from the first contact.

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Bridal Hair – Practice Makes Perfect

If you’re going to be styling hair, ask your client to send you a few photos of the sorts of hairstyles they like in advance. This will give you the invaluable opportunity of being able to practice the styles you know she’ll love before you meet her, meaning you get to avoid those tricky moments where you don’t feel confident in giving her what she wants!

Remember: Practice heads are not quite like the real thing, but they are incredibly useful.  There’s a bewildering choice of heads available, so you might get into a bit of a spin figuring out which one to get but whatever length you choose, make sure it is 100% human hair.

We love the Capital Hair and Salon Services practice heads and use these on all of our bridal hair courses. Salon Services are a more expensive and have thicker hair, however, the Capital Hair practice heads (available in our shop!) have hair that is lighter in colour, almost as if they have highlights, which always looks better on camera. If you’re hoping to build up your portfolio or win clients over with photos of your styles on your practice head, this makes a huge difference.

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Timing

There’s no right or wrong time of year to offer a trial run, but you will probably find that your busiest months will be in the summer as the peak wedding season runs from April to October.

The majority of brides will be happy having their trial 3-6 months before the big day, but if your bride says that she wants her trial 12 months before the wedding, let her. There’s no harm in it and she may be having sleepless nights! It’s part of your job to help your brides feel relaxed and happy and this will be one more thing she can tick off her list. However, if she has the trial too far in advance she may decide to have another one closer to the wedding – that’s no problem but she’ll have to pay again.

If you can, try to start booking your bride’s trials in sooner in the year, rather than later, to keep your summer weekends free for weddings! If you can gently nudge your clients into having their trial runs in January, Feb & March you’ll end up being able to take on more wedding bookings and making more money.

Oh – one more thing about timing – never do a trial run when you’re in a rush! Your bride may have spent years planning her wedding, so make sure you give her the time and attention she needs.

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Keep on Learning, Even After Your Training

A bridal hair stylist’s work is never done! Never stop learning new styles and make sure that you’re practicing on a regular basis to stay fresh.

If you’re thinking about joining one of our bridal hair courses in London, Manchester Birmingham or Bristol you couldn’t’ve picked a better time! We now include up to a year of online bridal hair training, support and advice with each booking.

Our online training offers you the chance to learn new styles and practice a wide variety of different styles as many times as you like, as well as offering you 1-2-1- help and advice from Pam whilst you’re learning in the comfort of your own home.

Once you’re an online member, you can also join Pam on her live webinars and get your bridal hair questions answered there and then!