One of the first times you get to see how things will really look on your wedding day is during your hair and makeup trials. Sure, you'll have time to tweak and adjust, but you'll also walk out of the salon looking like, well, a bride! As with many other details for your wedding, timing your trial correctly is key. So when should you get it on the calendar? Our experts have some advice that should help you figure it out.
There are a few things you need to do before you book your hair and makeup trials. The first is to have a date and a venue. Seems obvious, right? Knowing when and where you'll be getting married can have an impact on the styles you're considering, whether it's on the beach in the heat of summer or in a ballroom in winter. You should also have selected your wedding dress and begun to shop for accessories, from headpieces and a veil to your earrings and necklace. Knowing the style of your dress will also influence how formal or relaxed your hair and makeup styles will be, and the accessories can play into whether you're wearing your hair up or down, looking for curls or a braid, or going soft or dramatic with your makeup.
According to Smith & Cult Beauty Ambassador Elena Miglino, research is key when deciding on a makeup artist for your big day. "Bridal makeup artists book up months, sometimes a year in advance," she said. "When choosing your artist, you want to make sure she is a bridal makeup artist, meaning she does weddings and understands the severity of the day. Make sure she has a contract and is 100 percent professional."
When you finally lock down an artist, it's sometimes helpful to schedule a second trial closer to your wedding day, as you want to be sure of your final look. "I recommend airbrush or a long wear foundation for the day of," Miglino continued. "You want something that will last all day and look flawless in pictures. I would also keep with your normal skincare routine to avoid trying something new and creating breakouts. A facial is a good idea a few weeks before, and maybe a hydrating mask the night before."
For makeup inspiration, Miglino suggests looking back at old photos of yourself. "For your wedding, you want to still look like you. Show your artist a picture of yourself with makeup on, a time that you liked how you photographed and felt comfortable. Please note, Instagram can lead to false hopes! Most of the looks you see are highly filtered. Lastly, be comfortable with your artist, she is there for you and wants you to feel your best. If there is something you would like to change, feel free to tell her."
Franck Izquierdo, cofounder of IGK Hair Care, recommends a trial about a month or two ahead of your wedding—but only if you don't plan to cut or dye your hair. "It’s most important that you give yourself and your stylist time to make adjustments if needed," he said. "As you get closer to your wedding, it can get very busy, so it’s sometimes easier to work out your look a couple months ahead of time."
"If you want to make any major changes, you should start to discuss with your stylist about six months ahead of the wedding," Izquierdo continued. "This way, your stylist can plan out the transition and begin to work with the color and the cut. Your final coloring should be done about two weeks before the wedding, to let it settle but still be fresh for your big day. And it gives you time to make any small changes before the big day."
Thinking of getting a major cut before the ceremony? Izquierdo recommends taking a scissor to strands as early as possible. "A big cut should be discussed six months before the wedding so that your stylist can begin to make the cuts and see how your hair responds. Any final cuts or changes should be done about 10 days prior to the wedding, so your hair has time to adjust to the cut and look more natural."
"Overall, your wedding hair is a journey and you should discuss your vision with your stylist as far out as you’re able to so they can start to work towards your end goal. It’s also ideal to have your stylist with you on your wedding day because they know your hair and your personal style best."