Now that your wedding planning is in full swing, you might be wondering about your bridal makeup. Nicole Russin-McFarland, a film director and former model, gave us a few bridal makeup tips for brides to make a statement photographing well on camera.

Bridal makeup tips

1. Avoid dark lipstick if your wedding is in hot weather.

“Women practise their dream makeup for events in Britain and are in for a surprise when they get to Los Angeles or Hawaii! Or the desert! Lipstick drips so badly in the heat. Your red lipstick will run everywhere, liner or no lip liner, with or without primer.” Russin-McFarland suggests lip liner to prevent running and lip gloss with some shine.

2. Your makeup might not work if you change your bridal hairstyle.

“Makeup that looks very beautiful might be too intense when you pull your hair back,” Russin-McFarland says. She says to stick with one hairstyle for your wedding day and work your day to night bridal look changes around it.

3. Contouring and bronzer are not for everyone.

Russin-McFarland says makeup artists tending to her overdo the bronzer and contouring. “Women always think contouring and bronzer is fabulous, and it really only is if you already have a Bondi Beach surfer chick look. It definitely doesn’t look pretty for most aesthetics. The fairer your skin, the more ridiculous it is. On medium and dark skin, bronzer can give out a Cheeto orange hue that takes away the natural beauty of darker skin. Men of every orientation always used to tell me when people styled me, ‘It looks like you fell in mud.’ Make the most of whatever you skin colour naturally is picking out the right blush.”

4. You can get the same look in fewer steps.

As a model, Russin-McFarland said makeup artists spent too much time on her face. “They always caked on ‘the slap’ very hard for it not to photograph at all. I usually hated it. In reality, it looked ridiculous. On camera, it was the same thing I could have done myself with far fewer products.” She says a smokey eye can be done with one to two two eyeshadows and eyeliner, and warns that complicated eyeshadow palette looks will not photograph much differently.

5. Matte makeup is ageing.

“Matte lips look dry on camera. Matte skin with heavy powders will sink into every crack you never had and create a bumpy texture that you won’t see until your wedding photos and the videos are back,” she says. She thinks a bride’s best option is your favourite primer, concealer, one average size layer of foundation, and optional highlighter.

6. Practise your makeup in every light.

“Flash and no flash. Sunlight. Dimly lit indoor lighting. Different cameras. Angles,” she says. “You need to be ready at least two weeks in advance doing this. Don’t listen to people who suggest makeup based on your eye colour or hair colour. Eyes change too much with the light. Going from a vibrant sunny locale like Hawaii to cold Scotland or vice versa, you will find how different your eyes, hair, skin, and the dress fabric will all look, and that is in person without counting the on camera changes. Try to mimic the environment you know you will be getting married in.”

7. Be avant garde or simple, you do you.

Russin-McFarland thinks you should embrace your real self. “Hopefully, this is the final time you’re getting married! You won’t have another redo,” she says. “For some people, they want classic neutral beauty. Some women may love a goth wedding dress paired with eyeliner, or marrying in a businessman’s suit. Some may want to dress up like Disney princesses! Never allow someone else’s vision of what a beautiful bride is to ruin your special day. You are the one getting married.”

8. Stop following makeup for your eye shape.

“We see these guides all the time. ‘Makeup for hooded eyes!’ ‘Makeup for deep set eyes!’ ‘Makeup for thin lips!’ Realistically, you aren’t fooling anyone in person or on camera. She says the only means of changing your face shape are Photoshop or CGI.

Bridal makeup tips

“People are going to see a woman with thinner lips in person wearing a ton of makeup to look like she has fuller lips. They will see a woman with hooded eyes whose eyes don’t look any less hooded because she is wearing crazy lady makeup up to her eyebrows recommended on YouTube! Me, I have practically no eyelid space and these super tight small eyelids, and every makeup disaster ever has been because makeup artists try to give me makeup to make my eyelids look different. There is nothing wrong with my eyes, and there isn’t anything wrong with yours. Instead of caking things on to look like someone else in one size fits all beauty, love yourself and look like the best version of yourself!”

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