Our wedding was very much a DIY affair and my make up was no exception, I did it myself. I spent hours searching for bridal makeup inspiration on Pinterest and found three or four images that I loved but the below was my favourite.
I wanted my bridal look to be soft, romantic and pretty with a subtle, sun-kissed glow. Ultimately, I wanted to look like me rather than a face of makeup that I had never worn before. Our wedding wasn’t about being extravagant or OTT; it was an intimate celebration. As cliche as it sounds, it was about us, our love and life together.
In the six months leading up to the wedding I started to buy all of the products I would need. I also booked a makeup lesson at a Chanel counter where the MUA demonstrated the correct way to blend eyeshadows seamlessly. MAC was also quite useful, and a MUA there suggested I fill in my lips with a lip liner before applying lipstick to make it last longer.
My wedding day makeup routine:
1. After cleansing I applied MAC’s Prep and Prime as a base to improve the application and appearance of my foundation.
2. I used MAC’s Studio Finish Concealer in NW25 to hide my blemishes and the creamy, opaque finish gave the perfect coverage. This is also a great concealer for acne scars!
3. The foundation I went for is the PERFECTION LUMIÈRE VELVET by Chanel in 30 Beige. I am in love with this foundation. Firstly, this is an incredibly lightweight consistency that applies as a liquid but blends with a smooth, natural matte texture. I used a MAC foundation brush for application and I was left with a flawless finish.
It is the perfect foundation for oily to combination skin and for destination weddings where it is hot and humid.
4. Next up I filled in my brows with my MAC’s Espresso, a basic dark brown that matches my eyebrows perfectly. I use this shade as part of my daily makeup routine and have done for years.
5. The eyes. I highlighted under my brow with Venus from the Urban Decay Naked Basics Palette to make them pop. I used Naked 2 from the same palette in the crease and ever so slightly in the outer corner. I then swept MAC’s Yogurt, a pretty subtle matte pink, across the lid. I also added a tiny amount of MACS’ Pink Freeze to the middle of the lid for a little shimmer. I blended. And blended. And blended a little more. In the inner corner I applied the Urban Decay Venus shadow.
As I didn’t want to put eyeliner on my lower lashes but I still wanted to emphasise them, I very gently smudged a little of MAC’S Espresso in the lower lash line.
6. I mistakingly used the Rimmel gel eyeliner across my lash line and wish I used my Chanel pencil instead. It looked absolutely fine but not perfect as I’m not particularly precise with gel liner.
7. Before applying my Eylure false eyelashes, I brushed a few strokes of Dior’s Diorshow waterproof mascara through the top lashes.
8. Next I applied Clinique’s Line Smoothing Concealer in 02 Light under my eyes. This is by far my favourite concealer and I much prefer this to YSL’s Touche Eclat as it gives my quite dark under eye circles full coverage.
9. I then brushed over NARS Pressed Powder in Beach to set my foundation. Another firm favourite in my makeup bag.
10. Bronzer. I love a good bronzer. For contouring I always use Bobbi Brown’s Bronzing Powder in Natural as it is the perfect shade for my colouring, offering a beautiful matte glow. A quality bronzer that I highly recommend. I also used this to contour my nose!
11. For my blusher I applied Mocha by MAC to the apple of my cheeks. It is a highly-pigmented matte, mauve/plum pink that looks lovely with a tan.
12. Highlighting is a process I LOVE. I dab a small amount of MAC’S Prep and Prim Highlighter in Light Boost under my eye, along the bridge of my nose and just above my eyebrows in the middle of my forehead. We have all seen how Kim Kardashian highlights and contours and this is pretty much the pattern I follow.
13. I used the Burberry Dusty Rose Lip Definer to outline my lips and fill them in and layered over MAC’S Please Me (a rosy pink) and a little bit of MAC’S Creme Cup (a light blue pink). This combination resulted in a rose pink lip which I did love but looking back I would have gone for a slightly more nude pink. My partner doesn’t like nude lips so I guess this was a good compromise.
14. Lastly, I spritzed Urban Decay’s All Nighter Makeup Setting Spray and I was ready to go.
My makeup lasted, despite a very emotional day with tears rolling down my cheeks the moment I walked down the aisle, during the ceremony, all through the speeches… oh and jumping in the pool after dinner!
For makeup brushes I used a mix from MAC, Bobbi Brown and Real Techniques.
The main lesson I have begrudgingly learnt is to practice my makeup three or four times before a big event. Unfortunately I only had the time to try out my eye makeup once and I am not positively happy with the final result but it is all irrelevant – I married my first love, my best friend, my everything. And he thought I looked beautiful so that is all that matters.
Luckily, my friend a trained MAC MUA painted my face for me for the reception in Cambridge so that makeup was AMAZING.
If you do go down the DIY route, I highly recommend you practice your bridal makeup look several times, time permitting. It is also useful to take photos of your wedding day makeup in different light settings to ensure the texture of products are right for your complexion. A few foundations leave a washed out look (not ideal when wearing a white dress) and if you are having a destination wedding somewhere hot, matte products are ideal.
For my nail polish I went for Essie’s Better Together. It is a beautiful subtle pink, a little sheer but definitely not nude. The name Better Together is so fitting for a bride.
My perfume choice had to be Chanel Chance. This is my all time favourite scent.