We love sharing wedding photography ideas and we are fortunate to have Mackenzie Gustafson the owner of Zee Artistry as our guest blogger. We love the 5 top tips she has to share with us for wedding makeup. Mackenzie Gustafson (Zee) is a celebrity makeup artist based in Chicago. In the past year and a half she has made her mark in the Chicago scene and has worked with clients such as Lupe Fiasco, Steve Lemme, and Danielle Fornarelli (to name a few). Proficient in Editorial, Commercial, Bridal, Airbrush, and Special FX makeup, Mackenzie's work has been featured across multiple forms of media including television (MTV, TNT, TLC), feature films, book covers, billboards, and magazines (Seventeen, Teen Vogue, Sports Illustrated).
"A wedding can be an extremely stressful time. It is quite the investment and you need to make sure you have a solid group of individuals coming together to make it everything you could have ever hoped for. You look to your closest friends and family for input on these decisions. Most of them were married before so they should know right?
Well in most cases no. Leaving plans for the biggest day in your life to outsiders is a risky business. You are likely going to get opinions that have been biased by others’ ideas of a dream wedding. Lets use me as an example; My mother booked an Aquarium before I even had a significant other because that was the place she wanted her reception but couldn’t afford it. Though it was an amazing gesture, someone I adored didn’t have my opinion or dreams in mind, they were clouded by her own fantasy. Allowing her to win that battle would put in place a type of ‘hazing’ for my unknowing future daughter, and I definitely didn’t want to do that.
Now I get that you have to choose your battles, so I am going to speak to the one area I know best: Hair and Makeup. Having done over 80 weddings in the past two years, I’ve seen the good, the bad and the ugly. I am here today to prepare you and help prevent any mishaps during the grueling process of finding a makeup artist or hair artist for the day of.
- Keep in mind that YOU are the center of attention. Yes, attendees will judge your flowers, food and location, but in reality you will be the first thing talked about. This means that your makeup and hair (along with the dress) will be the most looked at, photographed, and remembered piece of the event. Freaking out yet? Not to worry, the perfect person or team to beautify is out there I promise.
- You will most likely NOT find this person on craigslist. They are not your future sister in laws aunt that worked for Mary Kay seventeen years ago. They are not at the department store trying to sell you half of their line and using pancake makeup. The happiest brides that I have worked with and spoken to have had their artists travel to the location and are certified professionals. This means they have a website, contract and credentials to verify their work is worthy. They have scheduled you and only you for that day. They won’t have ‘other clients’ impeding on your time and they will (hopefully) be using the best products suited for your needs.
- Your bridesmaids want to be prettier than you. When you schedule a trial it is best to keep only family or a friend that is like family with you. One to two people that you know have your best intentions in mind. The more people you have, the more problems that can arise, and the more opinions you will have to deal with. I have had countless bridesmaids try to require more attention in efforts to look better than the woman in white. This includes the most trusted of women asking me in private to add a little ‘some special’ to their makeup. I don’t think so.
- Have all the details nailed down at least a week in advance. This will ensure that your professional will have enough time to apply the makeup and give each individual the attention they deserve. Nothing is worse than having an extra three people added, because your attendees have seen how good the makeup or hair looks, with not enough time. You will wind up with a frazzled and distracted stylist. I once had a wedding party of 13 make me go to each clients’ room on 4 different floors while their husbands were still sleeping. That means packing, finding another room on a separate floor, unpacking and applying. Do your stylist a favor and have one single room for hair/makeup. Require a schedule (either written by you or the artist) that all in need of makeup are aware of and stick to.
- Realize that the ‘inspiration’ images are not you and the artist is trying their best to cater to your needs. I cannot tell you how many times brides have brought images of Kim Kardashian when they look like Taylor Swift and expect me to work magic. They get frustrated, have me take the makeup off and then say do whatever you think is best. Ten times out of ten the bride has been happier with makeup that compliments their own features instead of trying to be someone they are not.
All in all when you look in the mirror, the lovely woman that your fiancée fell in love with should be staring right back at you. Expect your artist to bring out the best version of you. Nothing more, nothing less."