An Expert's Six-Step Guide to Bridal Beauty During Coronavirus

Claire Balest shares what you can do while you wait.


Natalie Watson Photography

From facials and brow maintenance to scheduling your hair and makeup trial, all the unknowns can leave you feeling frustrated and overwhelmed. What do you do with the months you can’t plan and prepare the way you expected?

Whether you’re a bride with a wedding date or in the midst of a postponement, you have a lot of unexpected time on your hands right now—so, why not fill it with a little #selfcare?! It might not be the wedding prep you had expected, but implementing some of these beauty tips will make you feel like you’re checking things off your to-do list.

Meet the Expert

Claire Balest is a hair and makeup artist based in Knoxville, Tennessee. In her career, she has been the hair and makeup artist on three Emmy-nominated campaigns and has traveled the country representing brands such as Bobbi Brown, Chanel, and Estée Lauder. She, and her team at Claire Balest Hair and Makeup, specialize in production, luxury events, and fine art weddings.

In addition to giving yourself some love at home, you can also prepare by staying in touch with your creative team. Reach out to the experts—they’d be happy to virtually help you until you can get in to see them again. Take a breath, trust your creative team, and know that not only will everything eventually work out (it will!) for your wedding, but this will also make for quite a story someday. 

Below, a few beauty tips for what to do as you wait and prepare.

01 of 06

Create an Inspiration Board

bridal portrait with veil

Jose Villa

While you have the extra time, create an inspiration board of hair and makeup looks that you love. This is the perfect tool to convey your ideas and allows you to put a visual with your descriptions when talking with your beauty team.

Spend some time analyzing what you like—and don't like—about the images and eliminate ones that don’t align with your bridal style. For instance, you might just love the whimsy in an image of a boho bridal shoot but if you’re a very classic bride, that won’t help to communicate the look you’re wanting to create for your own wedding.

Remember that the purpose of your inspiration board is simply that—to inspire. Use it as a tool for communication with your beauty team and shy away from attempting to recreate an image exactly.

An inspiration board can include anything from colors you’re drawn to, makeup you love or an overall vibe you want your wedding to have. As you eliminate images, you should start to see a cohesiveness among the pictures that will convey the feel of your bridal style.

02 of 06

Share Images With Your Artist

bridal portrait by water

Clark Brewer

Share images with your team of some of your favorite looks. They can help you decipher the details, like whether there were lots of extensions used to create volume in a certain hairstyle you love or how a particular style you’re drawn to might wear through the evening. For instance, some looks are striking in a photograph but not ideal for real-life movement outside of one. These are great points to talk through virtually and will help you on your search for beauty inspiration.

03 of 06

Do a Virtual Trial

Bride getting hair done

To The Moon; Hair & Makeup by Karuna 

You need to be planning your hair and makeup trial, but why wait until you can meet in person? Schedule a Zoom call with your beauty team! Whether you spend the time doing a virtual consultation, tossing around ideas about bridal looks, or just sipping coffee together to see if your personalities are a good fit, time with your creative team is a valuable investment. It’s a great way to make sure you’re on the same page with ideas and will help to make everyone more comfortable working together on the wedding weekend. 

Ensure your virtual time together is well spent by coming into the call with a general idea of your bridal style and being ready for open and honest in the conversation. If you don’t love a particular suggestion they have, it’s important (and perfectly okay!) to say as much. Some brides have a very specific look in mind and others want some help finding it.

Regardless, you don’t have to be an expert or know a thing about makeup to communicate the way you want to feel on your wedding day. A great hair and makeup artist will have ideas just from talking these things through with you. Make sure you feel heard and understood when sharing your thoughts. The consultation is the most important part of a trial so if you’ve hired a great team, don’t worry about whether you can meet in person before the wedding.

Talking through your bridal style and overall vibe for the wedding goes a long way in determining your final look. You can always opt for an in-person trial later, but if you communicate well you should be able to trust your creatives to curate a look that’s perfect for you—just be sure to build in a little extra time together on the day of the wedding to allow for any adjustments.

04 of 06

Commit to a Skincare Routine

Glowing bride

Alex Lasota; Event Planning by GariAnn Hedquist of Tin Sparrow Events; Hair by La Bella Glo; Makeup by Mika Makeup Artistry

This is also the perfect opportunity to commit to an at-home skincare routine. After all, who knows when you’ll be getting in for your next facial? Take advantage of this extra time to use regular masks, exfoliating treatments, moisturizers, and facial massages so that when the wedding rolls around, you'll have smooth, hydrated skin.

While you’re establishing good routines, add in a nightly use of a lash growth serum to get your lashes prepped as well. See my recommended routine and products, below.

05 of 06

Grow Your Brows Out

Bridal portrait with puffy sleeves

JFK Imagen; Hair by Barbareando; Makeup by Lorena Carbajal 

If there’s ever been a time to grow out your brows, this is it! Commit to putting the tweezers down and leaving your brows alone so that when your wedding comes around you have a fuller, more natural brow for your makeup artist to work with. 

Make sure that once you do get that appointment, it’s with someone you know and trust. You don’t want to try any treatments or services you haven’t previously tried too close to the wedding.

06 of 06

Give Your Locks Some Love

Bride with glowing skin and natural hair

Alex Tome; Event Planning by Vows Portugal; Makeup by Antonia Rosa

You might not be getting in to see your stylist but that doesn’t mean you need to be neglecting your locks. Skip the heat styling and embrace your natural hair texture for a while. Use protein treatments (Christophe Robin Regenerating Mask or Oribe Gold Lust Transformative Masque are two favorites) to add strength back to your hair and air dry whenever possible so that you take a break from potential heat damage. You can use them as often as you like!

Related Stories