Someone asked me the funniest question the other day…
“Do you do weddings?”
Urm..well.. let me see.. YES!! Of course I do?!? As much as I love all things creative I also love all things beauty. I believe in being a balanced all rounder. So even though one day i’m on set playing with blood effects the next I could be pampering and preening a beautiful bride. That’s one of the things that makes this job and this life I lead so interesting. Every day’s different. I can never get tired of “the same old same old” because no two days are actually the same.
For many make-up artists, weddings are the ‘bread and butter’ of their business. It’s where the most money lies. It’s regular reliable work. But where many artists go wrong is that they lose the passion for the job. It turns into a regular 9-5. Never ever forget that each bride truly is an individual. It shouldn’t be “paint by numbers aka one look suits all”. Alot of people also tend to see weddings purely as cash cows. The price of everything goes through the roof. Makeup Artists and Hairdressers need to ensure that they offer real value for money otherwise the client may go somewhere else, not because she doesn’t like what you’ve done at the trial but simply because she found someone cheaper. The old saying goes “you get what you pay for”, this goes both ways. You can’t book a makeup artist simply based on price but if your portfolio and your experience don’t match your daily rate then you may find yourself with a lot of free weekends during the year. Why not also consider adding further services to your resume. Learning basic bridal hairdressing and undertaking a beauty therapy course may cost you initially but will reap rewards long term. When I receive any enquiries for a job, i’m able to offer much more than just make-up on the day. I offer an entire package including hair styling, a course of facials, waxing, massage and nails. But make sure you know what you’re doing properly. Any job worth doing is worth doing it right. Otherwise, don’t do it at all. Lol
A strong portfolio will go a long way towards securing potential clients. Variety is the key. Showing you can adapt and cater to their specific needs will make any bride feel that you will understand how they want to look on their big day. After all, it’s our job to make them feel like there has never been any more beautiful bride before them in the whole world. I’ll be honest with you. Applying the makeup is only 60% of the job. The rest is providing a first class service to the bride. From the moment you first speak to a potential client all the way through the trial up until the moment you zip her into her dress you can be more than just a makeup artist, you can be a comfort blanket. Someone who will relax her nerves, an advisor and a friend. I’m still in contact with so many of the brides i’ve worked on, met some wonderful people and in one very funny instance found out we were cousins! Creating a rapport with your client means that when one job ends, you can be guaranteed that other doors will be opened. As quickly as someone can recommend you, they can also warn others not to use you.
One of the reasons I love weddings so much is the fact that I work with so many different cultures. African, Asian, Oriental and European, everyone has such varying perceptions of beauty and of how a bride should look on their big day. European weddings usually consist of just the “white” wedding and they usually want a natural soft yet perfect look (one of the hardest to achieve to be honest!). Some people attend a registry some go to church, some get married on a beach while others seek out unusual memorable locations (I’ve prepared two brides for a same sex civil ceremony at a registry, travelled to Stonehenge, a Barn in Oxfordshire, a Victorian mansion in Buckingham (with a guest list of 25 people), a 1920s themed event in Devon and flown to a majestic castle in Spain amongst others). Some oriental weddings have an engagement and a white wedding while African weddings and Asian weddings top the list with up to 3 events (and numerous outfit changes during the ceremonies). Depending on what tribe/religion you are from will also affect what attire you have to wear. I love Nigerian weddings of course, Traditional & White, they’ve given me an opportunity to travel around Nigeria to places i’ve never visited before and learning more about our amazing cultures. But I have to admit, some of the most fun I’ve had has been at Asian weddings whether they’re Indian, Pakistani, Bengali, Sri Lankan, Nepalese etc they’re just as colourful as Nigerian ones, just as loud but the makeup explosion is just that much more vibrant. Combined with all the accessories and the different ceremonies including Mehndi night, it’s a make-up addicts dream come true. At my own wedding we combined and embraced the best of everything that i’d experienced. I got married in the Dominican Republic in a garden over looking a beach dressed in a 1920s vintage style for the white then changed into a Saree with full adornments and boogied the night away. Much to the annoyance of alot of people, I didn’t do a traditional wedding in Lagos (or London). I quite simply ran away. I’ve been to far too many weddings in my lifetime to go through that all myself. I just wanted a very quite peaceful private event because to be honest, the wedding is just one or two days the marriage is forever. You have to do what ever you’re most happy with. (Ok i’m lucky my parents were happy to jump on a plane with me in our little adventure otherwise I really wouldn’t have had a choice lol).
So in conclusion, remember we really are more than just make-up artists we’re Fairy Godmothers. We help make a brides dreams come true. So next time you’re dealing with a Bridezilla.. take a deep breath and remember, it’s all about her.
(Oh and just in case you didn’t know.. I’m holding masterclasses in London during December over the Christmas Holiday. one of them being Bridal Beauty. If you’re interested in attending any classes please feel free to drop me a line on firstname.lastname@example.org or call +44 7949 085 956)
Do I do weddings.. ha!!
Ok.. I guess it wouldn’t be complete unless I added mine too.. lol.. fairs fair..