makeup tips

Tips for Choosing Your Wedding Day Makeup Look

Choosing your wedding day makeup look can be exciting but also overwhelming. Where do you look for inspiration and ideas? Should you do something different from what you usually do? Do you need that much makeup? How will you look your best and not like someone else? These are just a few of the questions that I regularly hear from brides. At JKo Beauty, we specialize in bridal makeup. I personally have worked with brides for over 20 years and those on my team have years of experience as well. I have broken down a few very helpful tips to help you choose your wedding day makeup look.

Consider what you normally wear for special occasions or events. Often times brides wear little or light makeup everyday. This may be because of their lifestyle or their profession…maybe it’s just what makes them feel their best. However many of these ladies like to experiment or wear much more makeup for special events or occasions. If you like to wear a bold lip, this is a great time to wear a stylish red or a pretty pink or berry shade. These colors are timeless, glamorous and feminine. If you prefer smokey eyes, go for it! This look can be subtle yet stunning on a bride. If you prefer something more natural on your wedding day, keep in mind that the “no-makeup” makeup look is actually a full face of makeup.

Photo Credit: Carly Fuller Photography

Photo Credit: Carly Fuller Photography

Keep your overall wedding style in mind. For example, an outdoor ceremony in the afternoon or beach wedding is very different from a black-tie, evening ceremony. Your look should match the overall style. I always recommend choosing your venue or style of venue, then your gown and then your hair and makeup look. Everything should work together, in a harmonious and complimentary style.

Consider the season or time of year. Summer weddings, for instance, can be hot or humid and wearing a heavy eye makeup style with a heavier complexion look may not feel as good. Instead try a soft, glowing complexion with a bright or soft lip shade and subtle shimmer for your eyes. A winter wedding can be a perfect time for a bold lip or more dramatic eye look. These are only ideas, you should always stay true to your personal style and preference.

Try to stay away from trendy styles that will look dated in just a few short years. A stylish bride can always incorporate current trends in her look. The idea is to keep the trend somewhat subtle. We’ve all giggled at past wedding photos, but just remember, that was a fashion trend at that time! So when you are choosing your look, ask yourself if the style is a trend. A prime example is what is know as “Instaglam.” Bold brows, maybe even ombre brows, dramatic and transforming highlighting and contouring, as well as strong winged eyeliner are some of the elements to this trendy look. While this look can be fun (and I encourage you to have fun with your makeup,) incorporate these techniques into your look in a more understated or soft manner. Your makeup will look beautiful in person as well as your photos. Forever.

Photo Credit: Grace + Ardor Co.

Photo Credit: Grace + Ardor Co.

Once you’ve considered these factors, discuss your ideas or preferences with your makeup artist. I always have a thorough consultation with my brides during their trial to discuss and determine a look created just for them to make them look and feel as beautiful they had hoped for on their big day.

My Top Picks for the Best Black Eyeliners

Black eyeliner is a beauty staple. It can be used for so many different looks, classic and timeless to bold and dramatic or edgy. How many black eyeliners do you have? I realized that not only do I have an entire section devoted to black eyeliners in one of my makeup drawers but I actually use them all. So why have so many? Can't I use the same one for a variety of looks? Well of course I can, but there really is a difference! If you are not a fan of black and prefer something softer like brown or grey, that's ok. The following tips apply to any eyeliner, not just black. I have listed each product I am currently using and which look I prefer to use it for. Now before you think I am crazy for having so many, I LOVE makeup and enjoy trying different looks regularly. Hopefully this list will inspire you to try something new or give you an idea of a different way to use something you already own. 

Basic Black Eyeliner Pencil - NARS Larger Than Life in Via Veneto

This pencil is fast drying and intense black. For a look that is more defined and all day wearing, this is my favorite.   

*Application tip* Use a fine, angled liner brush to blend the outer corners for a winged-liner look.  

Pencil for the Waterline - MAC Technakohl Liner in Graphblack

I especially like that this pencil is retractable and requires no sharpening. If possible, I prefer this style pencil to a sharpenable pencil to avoid accidentally scratching my eye while applying. This pencil wears really well and touches up smoothly. It is also available in a variety of other shades. Using black for the waterline creates a more sultry effect. 

*Application tip* Apply once to the waterline while applying your eye makeup and then once again after completing the rest of your makeup look as a finishing touch. 

Tightlining - Make Up For Ever Aqua XL Eye Pencil in Matte Black

I like using this waterproof formula for creating a fuller, longer lash look by tightlining. Tightlining is when you apply liner to the upper, inside lash line. I also use it fill in  between the lashes. This creates a much more polished look to your lash line while, again, creating an illusion of more volume and length. 

*Application tip* Be sure to take your time and hold steady as you tightline. Hold your eyelid in place to prevent accidentally poking your eye. It is best to use a magnifying mirror. 

Sultry, Smokey Liner - Marc Jacobs Highliner Gel Eye Crayon in Blacquer

This eyeliner is so intense black and glides on with such ease. What's great about this pencil is that it is waterproof but doesn't set immediately. I prefer that for a more sultry, smokey look. You can easily blend this and apply more for added intensity. 

*Application tip* Apply very little pressure when using this pencil. It is so soft and almost melts onto your skin. Applying more pressure will create a thicker line and more intensity for when you want to add more drama. 

Gel Eyeliner - Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Gel Eyeliner in Black Ink and Anastasia Beverly Hills Waterproof Creme Color in Jet

I love both of these formulas, I simply can not choose! The Bobbi formula is a solid black and is easier to blend and build. This product holds up very well to heat, humidity and much more. It's no wonder it's an award-winning product. The Anastasia formula is a much more intense black and sets very quickly. I find that it doesn't build up quite as easily since it sets so quickly. But for a sharp, ultra-black look, whether winged and dramatic or thin, fine and natural, this product is a winner. 

*Application tip* Using a gel liner always use a brush that is in good condition and not frayed. If brush hairs are sticking out, you will not get as smooth and precise of a line. For a thin line, choose a thin, skinny brush. For a thicker, more dramatic line, use a wider brush. 

Liquid Liner - Stila Stay All Day Waterproof Liquid Eyeliner in Intense Black

This liner has a felt tip applicator much like a fine marker. The tip has a perfect combination of stiffness and flexibility. It is also truly an intense black and is waterproof. I buy this liner over and over again. It is now available in a Micro Tip style for an even finer point. 

*Application tip* Use this as a finishing touch to your eye makeup. This very fine point will fill in any gaps between your liner and lashes. 

Shadow Liner - MAC Eyeshadow in Carbon

This matte black shadow blends easily and can be built up for added intensity. I prefer to use this along the bottom lash line for a smokey look and applied over another black liner along the top lash line to either set and add more intensity or to create a softer look to the line. 

*Application tip* If you have not created the smoothest line on your eyes, apply this shadow using a fine angled brush and blend over your liner. This will cover and smooth any little bumps in your line.