The Lazy Girl's Guide To Planning A Wedding

How & When To Plan Your Wedding Hair & Makeup

Finding your look doesn’t have to involve months of trials and hundreds of dollars.

by Chika Ekemezie
Originally Published: 
A collage with women having wedding hair and makeup done
Delmaine Donson, Justin Mcfarland, EyeEm, Adriana Duduleanu, Irina Marwan, Hinterhaus Productions/Getty Images

When it comes to planning your wedding style, the dress is the star of the show. Your hair and makeup, however, complete the look and they’re something you’ll actually want to plan in advance — especially if you’re low-maintenance. But finding the right beauty vendors for your special day doesn’t have to be filled with months of makeup and hair trials and hundreds of dollars. If you’re looking for pointers to beat the stress of coordinating wedding glam, keep reading to find some hacks from experts and someone who has been there before.

When Should You Actually Start Planning Your Wedding Hair And Makeup?

Making sure that your makeup and hair is sorted will go a long way in keeping your wedding day as low stress as possible. Nikki Fraser, a makeup artist and owner of Beauty ’n the Bride, says that for those that aren’t working with a wedding planner, they’ll have to be more conscious of timelines because they’re handling it all themselves. While some planners will start to coordinate makeup and hair a year out, Fraser recommends at least six months prior to your big day to get your glam all scheduled and dealt with — even in the case of a small wedding party or no wedding party.

If you want to avoid the time suck of scheduling a ton of hair and makeup trials, the best plan of action is to do most of the work upfront. And luckily, the internet can help. Jessica Bishop, founder of and author of The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer, recommends using websites with visual search engines like Pinterest to find your desired look, and then going from there. Once you’ve decided on a style, you can look for a makeup artist or hairstylist in your area through Instagram, by using hashtags like #denvermakeupartist or #bostonMUA to locate professionals. That way, you can see if they offer what you want without having to go through the trial process. But still be sure to follow up with potential vendors and ask for customer testimonials and more photos.

The Best Hacks To Beat The Hassle

Bishop says that one of the best ways to cut down on the work of coordinating hair and makeup for your special day is to find a company or vendor that does both — that’s one less thing you’ll have to organize.

And if you’re really trying to keep things simple, you can always try booking an appointment at a blowout bar like Drybar to cut down on time and cost. “Their regular services are really reasonable,” Bishop says, “and you could always book a blowout or updo style for special occasions or date nights throughout your engagement to see how well the style holds up.”

How It Worked IRL

Even though your wedding day is ultimately about you, when it comes to hair and makeup, there are some other people you may have to have to consider, even if you don’t have a bridal party, like a maid of honor, siblings, or your mom. If you’re trying to avoid lengthy (and costly) makeup and hair trials by going the route of a blowout bar, keep in mind who is getting ready with you, and whether or not the service is right for them.

Phoebe, a 29-year-old bride from Pennsylvania, is legally married but hasn’t had her wedding yet. She’s looking for a vendor that can do it all, so that her entire wedding party feels beautiful. Phoebe is white and her husband is Black, and they have a very diverse wedding party. “On Pinterest, everyone looks the same in wedding photos, and that’s not always realistic,” says Phoebe.

In order to find the right makeup artist, Phoebe recommends asking your makeup artist specifically about working with different types of hair types and skin complexions. Phoebe also says it’s a good idea to ask for a portfolio to see examples of that type of work, too.


Jessica Bishop, founder of and author of The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer

Nikki Fraser, a makeup artist and owner of Beauty ’n the Bride

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