People often say that brides “glow”. Well, only part of this is due to undiluted happiness. The rest, we’re afraid to say, is down to cosmetics. Read these top tips to help you look your very best, not only when you say, “I do” but for the many hours afterwards too.


  • A professional makeup artist will apply products with staying power so they should last throughout the day – but they may provide you with samples so that you can do touch-ups if needs be.
  • It’s a good – no, excellent – idea to have at least one makeup trial before the wedding day so that there are no surprises or last-minute freak-outs about the shimmer of your eye shadow or the gloss of your lipstick.
  • Make sure that your makeup artist is trained in makeup for photography. If not, you could wind up looking washed-out in the pictures. Not a good look for a blushing bride. Take snaps of yourself after your trial to see how they come out (but bear in mind that you’re not a professional photographer).
  • Consider hiring the same artist to do makeup for your bridesmaids, mom and fiancés mom for a consistent look.
  • Try to have your makeup trial on the same day as your hair trial so that you can see the complete image that you’ll be going for on the big day.
  • Wear waterproof mascara and eyeliner (tears of joy are pretty much a given!) and a lipstick that doesn’t rub off easily.
  • If you’re going to do your makeup yourself, practice, practice, practice well in advance with different colors and techniques until you’ve nailed the look you feel most beautiful in.
  • Don’t go too heavy on the makeup – remember that you’ll still want to look like you.


  • Don’t try a new haircut or color right before your wedding – now is not the time to experiment!
  • An on-trend hairstyle might look great now but do really want to look at photos in years to come and gasp, “What was I thinking?” (calling all ’80s brides!). Classic up-dos like chignons and French twists transcend decades.
  • Arrange to have your hair trial the same day as your makeup trial.
  • Don’t forget to bring any accessories you’re going to wear in your hair to get the full effect – also bring your veil and earrings.
  • Consider your gown when choosing your hairstyle. If it has intricate details on the neckline or back, wear your hair up so as not to cover up its beauty. Likewise, if it’s strapless and you’d rather have your hair covering your shoulders, wear it loose and flowing. Take a photo of your gown to your hair trial.
  • Think about what the weather conditions will be on your wedding day. Humidity, rain and wind will all affect the way your hair looks. Even if your ceremony and reception are indoors, you’ll probably be outside for some portion of the day (getting to and from locations/for photos, etc.) so bear this in mind when selecting your style – you’ll want it to stay in place all day long.
  • Trawl magazines to find hairstyles you like and show them to your stylist, who can help you narrow down which ones will suit your face shape, hair length and texture.
  • If you plan to have fresh flowers in your hair, make sure that the florist and hairdresser are coordinated – it’s no good having the flowers arrive once your stylist has left.
  • Planning to remove your veil after the ceremony? Ask your stylist how you can do this carefully without damaging your ’do.
  • If you perm or color your hair, do this far enough in advance so that it has time to relax and look natural.
  • Get your hair trimmed a couple of weeks before the wedding to remove any split ends.
  • Ask your stylist how they’d like your hair before they begin to style it – hair is often easier to tease and manage the day after it’s been washed.


  • To achieve radiant skin before the big day, start a routine months in advance. Firstly, get into the habit of drinking plenty of water.
  • Start having facials – perhaps one a month. Have a facial that includes extractions a month or two prior to the wedding – but no closer to the big day because they can cause breakouts. Talk to your facialist about the best treatment for your skin type.
  • Get enough rest. In the days leading up to the wedding, this may prove tricky with all the last-minute arrangements… but try to get everything sorted out a few days prior to the wedding so that you can take it east and rest up. Your skin will thank you for it. For more advice on how to prep your skin for the big day.

Manicure & Pedicure

  • Brides often go for a classy French manicure or stick to pale pinks – bright colors tend to stand out too much in photographs.
  • Have your mani/pedi the day before the wedding so there’s less chance of chipping. Or go for a Shellac nail polish that dries instantly and holds up for about two weeks – it’ll probably last your whole honeymoon!
  • Don’t forget to bring the nail color you want to your appointment.

Other Beauty Advice

  • Avoid the sun or tanning booth a week before your wedding. A red lobster for a bride with unfortunate tan lines will raise a few eyebrows. For advice on going with the glow
  • Organize waxing, laser hair removal, teeth whitening and facial treatments several days before the wedding to avoid irritated skin or allergic-reaction disasters.
  • If you’re getting married outside in the summer, use sunblock before your makeup is applied. And don’t forget to apply the cream to your arms, chest, neck, ears and any other skin on display.