The collection of tips below was compiled by Professional Photographer magazine for the March 2010 issue (a trade industry publication that I write for). In the article, Steve Moore, Deanna Rene, and Holly Schumacher weighed in on makeup tips for brides as their wedding day approached — but this information is really invaluable for anyone who is planning to be photographed.
Blend, Blend, Blend
You can use your everyday makeup, but use more than you normally use every day. Many makeup professionals use airbrush makeup, the method of choice for high-definition TV, because it’s lightweight, waterproof and gives flawless coverage.
Good makeup shapes and enhances the features of your face, and doesn’t really jump out at you. If you’re not experienced with applying makeup so that it enhances your features and blends smoothly, have someone else do your makeup for you.
You deserve to be pampered every so often, anyways,… right?
2. Sometimes Less is More
Use less makeup for a day wedding and more for evenings. You can get dramatic with eye makeup.
The eyes say it all. You want to make sure to compliment your style — if your style is casual and lighthearted, then more minimal makeup will suffice.
On the other hand, if you’re planning a something really formal and elegant, you will probably want to go heavier on your bridal makeup so it matches the mood.
3. Don’t Skimp on Concealer
Use a moisturized concealer on the thin, sensitive skin under the eyes. If your concealer isn’t moisturizing, blend it with a skin cream. For blemishes, first treat them with a natural or over-the-counter anti-inflammatory, then cover with concealer.
You can also prevent that “too dry” feeling by applying a moisturizing lotion to your face before beginning to apply your concealer. This will allow you to blend the area needing coverage more subtly.
4. Do a Makeup Trial Run
It’s the only sure-fire, stress-free way to make certain your makeup will look beautiful.
Plus…. if you decide you don’t like the look, you’ll still have time to come up with an alternative plan of action.
If you’re not one to normally wear a lot of makeup (or any, for that matter), then you’ll definitely want to consider a trial run so you know whether you can feel comfortable going out all made up.
5. Not All Mineral Makeup is Created Equal
Titanium dioxide, a chemical used as sun block, can reflect flash, giving the bride a ghostly appearance. In 2009 makeup artist Annie May launched a line of mineral makeup especially formulated for photography called Advanced Mineral Makeup. May promises it won’t white-out the bride under a flash.
Trust me — I’ve seen this happen. It is not pretty. You will not want to share the pictures if your face looks bright white.
Not sure if your makeup includes the “ghost factor?” Take a snapshot with flash once you’ve applied the makeup in question — it will show up on your consumer camera if it’s going to happen.
6. Use Waterproof Makeup With Staying Power
You don’t want to spend your reception in the bathroom reapplying your makeup. Foundation, eyeliner and mascara all should be waterproof. And in case you cry (and you probably will), have a tissue or handkerchief handy to gently blot your tears right at the eye.
Even if you use waterproof makeup, I’d still recommend taking the “essentials” along with you to help you “freshen up” if necessary at any point.
7. Keep Your Lips Moisturized and Colored
Dry lips look dreadful in photos. … touch up often. Matte and gloss lipstick both photograph well, and be sure to use blended lip liner for enhanced definition.
Applying colored lip liner before your lipstick will definitely help the color to “stay” longer. Check the mirror whenever you visit the restroom and you’ll be able to do any touch ups then.
8. Don’t Forget the Groom
If the groom is red faced due to too much sun (or drinking), a little powder can help. That goes for shiny heads, too. And it’s a good idea to slip a tube of Chapstick in the groom’s pocket for his dry lips, as well as a handkerchief to dab well-wishers’ makeup smudges off his suit.
This tip is the most blatantly wedding-related. But the tip about too much sun goes for anyone. Although, I’d add that most guys won’t let you put any “powder” on them, even if it will get rid of shine for any photos. But you’re welcome to give it a shot if you truly feel the need to do so.
9. Don’t Sprinkle on Glitter
In photographs, it tends to look like little white spots, as if there’s something wrong with the camera.
And…. if you put glitter in your hair, it can sometimes even resemble dandruff in the photographs. Make life easier on your photographer, and don’t glam up your hairdo with glitter!
10. Remember to Put Foundation on More Than Your Face….
Don’t forget to apply foundation and powder to your neck, shoulders and décolletage—you want your head to look like it belongs to your body!
Also, unless you tan, your skin is generally lighter in the winter than in the summer — so if you’ve matched your foundation and powder to your skin months in advance… you may find your makeup looking too “obvious” if you only apply foundation and powder to your face.
There you have it! Ten makeup tips to help you look your absolute best in photos