All right, so you're engaged. You might even have your dress and maybe even the cake all picked out, but one of the things most brides put off is deciding what to do about their hair and makeup for the big day. Because, after all, how do you begin to choose? For some tips on how to make sure your hair and makeup are the way you've always dreamed of on the big day,
- Start early Ideally, you need to begin your search at least three to six months in advance. You might have to do trial runs with a few different stylists before deciding on one, and this can take time to book. If you are getting married during a popular time of year, you don't want to select the perfect stylist only to discover that they are already booked the day of your wedding! Moral of the story: As with all things wedding related, the sooner you get this taken care of, the better.
- Use your friends If you know someone who has gotten married in your area, use her as a resource for information. Why do all the leg work when someone else has already been through it? While her choice of stylist might not necessarily be yours as well, at the very least she can help you steer clear of places that were a total disaster.
- Do your homework Call the salons in your area and ask if they specialize in bridal hair and makeup. If they say yes, ask if they have portfolios available of their work. If you live near a department store, stop by and get a few makeovers from your favorite brands, and if you love any of their work, see if they offer out-of-store makeup applications.
- Ask questions — and expect to have them asked back You should always interview potential candidates. There's no need to bring on the inquisition, but a couple of questions (how many weddings have they worked on, do they have experience with updos, etc.) are totally normal and expected. Also make sure to ask about pricing, transportation to the wedding site, cost for them to primp your bridesmaids/mother of the bride as well, and whether or not they can stay to touch up your makeup for the pictures. An experienced hair and makeup stylist should be asking you questions in return about the neckline of your dress, whether or not you will be wearing a veil, the time of day/lighting of your wedding, etc.
- Schedule a trial Once you've narrowed down a few of your favorites, arrange trial runs of the looks they have in mind for you. Don't be afraid to bring pictures of what you envision as your ideal wedding look. A good artist will ask you how you like things as they are going along, so she can adjust to your personal style. If you end up hating the look, you don't have to go with that stylist! Just thank her and then notify the salon you have chosen some one else for the big day. Under no circumstances should you feel obligated to choose someone who gave you a face of makeup you hate or a hideous hairstyle.
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