Nicole Keen
Nicole Keen
@keenmachine

Where I Found My Bridal Beauty Inspiration

I still love my bridal hair and makeup—and it’s nearly four years since my wedding day! Looking back, I wouldn’t change a single thing. I’m glad I didn’t play it safe…I’m a red lip girl for life, and I’m so happy I rocked bold lips at my wedding. Which brings me to my first piece of advice: Be true to you. Some people will say, stick to soft, neutral colours, but I firmly believe that a more daring look can still stand the test of time (just stay away from anything super trendy: Think electric blue eyeliner). There’s no reason you should get a French manicure just because you’re a bride. If you love bright or dark nail colours, don’t fight it. You get the picture. (Oh, and read Ashley’s post if you need some fun bridal nail inspo.) When it comes to deciding on your perfect bridal beauty look, here are some tried-and-true places to start.

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Get Starry Eyed
Your wedding day is kinda your red-carpet moment, so it makes total sense to check out what beauty trends your fave celebs are wearing to awards shows, premieres, etc. Long before my wedding, I was obsessed with Michelle Williams’ 2006 Oscar look. IMHO, everything about this is utter perfection—with a special shout out to her effortless hairstyle (hi, loose retro waves) and super-flattering red lipstick. I was all about recreating this vibe for my wedding.

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Pin It to Win It
You’re planning a wedding, so I trust you’re already BFFs with Pinterest, and I’m sure you’ve realized that Pinterest boards are a great way to collect all the bridal beauty looks you love in one handy place. Over time, you’ll notice patterns emerging, and those patterns will help you narrow down your bridal hair and makeup. For example, several months into planning I noticed my propensity to pin retro-inspired beauty looks featuring marcel waves and vampy lips. It became pretty clear that was the direction I needed to go in.

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Trust an Expert
I’m ashamed to admit it now, but I almost didn’t have a hair and makeup trial. Fortunately, my friend Alison convinced me of the error of my ways before it was too late. As it turned out, my trial was an amazing opportunity to bounce ideas off my hair and makeup artist (the amazingly talented Michelle Rosen), and we were able to turn all those Pins into something real that worked well for me. Not only that, but she thought of things I never would have, like fake lashes and lots o’blush. The pros know what you need to look amazing IRL and in photos—trust them, and the results will speak for themselves. An added bonus to the hair/makeup trial? You’ll know exactly what you’re going to get on the big day. Even if your cake topples or your drunk uncle slips on the dance floor, at least you can be comforted by the fact that your lipstick is on point.

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