Questions to Ask Potential Bridal Makeup Artists

For this installment of ‘Questions to ask’ I’m taking on the world of wedding day makeup. I’ve compiled a list of the top questions you should ask when inquiring with wedding makeup artist, or MUA's for short. These gals, and some guys :) are there to help you look your absolute best on your big day so its important to select an artist who’s style meshes with your own and who you are comfortable spending some up close and personal time with. 

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1. How should I prepare my skin for the wedding? A general rule of thumb is to not do anything crazy to your face or body in the last few months leading up to the wedding. Say no to spray tans, chemical peals and the like. Also be sure to stay hydrated. 

2. Do you use a specific brand of products? Most MUA’s will use a wide range go products to create your wedding day look. There are some however who are loyal to a specific brand and this can be for a wide variety of reasons. Perhaps they also are a rep for Mary Kay, or they work for a salon that has a relationship with one or two brand vendors. 

3. Do you charge a travel fee? In most cases the MUA will be coming to you at whatever location you identify as your ‘get ready location’ be sure to ask them about travel fees and your location will likely be a bit of a distance from their studio or salon. 

4. Do you offer a trial session? I don’t know a singe makeup artist that doesn't offer a trial session, but it is normal for this to be charged as a separate fee. Pay the fee. Go for the trial. this is your face we're talking about, you don’t want any surprises or rashes day of because you cut corners on a trial. 

5. Will the same artist who does my trial do my wedding day makeup? I would find it rather unusual for a company to book one artist for your trial and a separate artist for the actual wedding day. Do be sure to ask though because its important to have consistency. 

6. Will mine be the only wedding you book that day? MUA’s don’t spend the whole day with you (unless you book them for touch ups throughout) so it would be quite normal for them to book more than one wedding a day. Just be sure to ask about it and ask how much time they allow as a buffer between clients. 

7. Can you accommodate my entire bridal party? A single artist is not going to be able to do makeup on everyone in your bridal party in a timely fashion. If all of your ladies will be booking makeup services ask about the ratio of artists to clients. 

8. How much time should I allow for wedding day makeup? For the bride an hour is typical and 30-45 minutes for each bridesmaid. On wedding day plan to be running behind, everything takes longer than it should. 

9. How will you set the makeup so I don’t look like a hot mess by ceremony time? Setting sprays, powders and waterproof are the name of the game in wedding makeup. Ask your artist what products they specifically use to help you look your best through the entire day. 

10. Do you offer hair styling services as well? Many MUA’s are also hair stylists or their company also employs a separate hair stylist. Ask what services are available. 

11. Are things like false eyelash application or tattoo cover an additional charge? It is often the case that these speciality services will become an additional line item on your invoice. If these are services you are interested in booking ask before the contract is singed if they are included in your package. 

12. Do you use products that are hypoallergenic? As a person with sensitive skin this is a question I am particularly interested in. You want to know early on what you might react poorly to. 

13. Do you use products that contain SPF? If your wedding is outdoors SPF sounds like a good idea, right? It can actually be troublesome on wedding day and for an unexpected reason. Some products with SPF can cause you to have an orange tint in photographs. Ask your artist what they recommend to overcome this issue and still protect your skin. 

13. How would you describe your artistic style? Each MUA is going to have a unique style. Ask how they describe themselves and ask to see examples of their work. Popping over to their Instagram account is always a smart idea as they likely are using social media as a place to show off their best work. 

14. Do you offer airbrush foundation? Is that an additional fee? Are you interested in an airbrush look? Inquire about the potential of going this route for your foundation base and its costs.. 

15. What is your booking procedure? After an initial consultation the artist will most often send an invoice proposal and contract. A retainer to secure your date at the time of booking is completely normal for MUA’s (and really any wedding professional). 

16. What forms of payment do you accept? Check, cash, card- ask how will pay your artist and also inquire about the payment schedule.  

17. What are your setup requirements? Since most MUA's will be setting up in the location of your choice ask what space or equipment they will need. Natural light? Table space? Mirrors? How many chairs? 

Still not sure how to go about selecting the best artist for the job? Send me a note, I'm happy to offer additional pointers!