August 01, 2011

Wedding beauty on a budget

When planning a wedding, there's no doubt the cost can start to mount rapidly; but beauty is one area where brides on a budget can afford to save a few pennies if they're savvy. Our beauty blogger Laura Curtis shares some tricks of the trade that will have you looking a million dollars for less than $100.

1. First of all, assess whether it will be more economical to do your own make-up or hire a make-up artist to do it for you. If you already have a comprehensive make-up collection, then doing it yourself won't set you back much at all. However, if you're a bit of a make-up novice, the advantage of having a professional is that he or she will provide all of the necessary products, the cost of which is part of their service fee.

2. If you have decided to hire a make-up artist, try asking friends or family if they know of a recently graduated make-up artistry student (preferably with some raw talent!). They would be thrilled to have wedding pictures to add to their portfolio. If you are specific about what you want (providing photos torn for magazines of looks you love is always a good idea), they should be able to create the look you want for a fraction of the cost of a seasoned artist. The same applies for a hairstylist.

3. If you don't already follow a skincare regime, it is important to start one at least a month before the wedding, so that your skin is looking its best. Cetaphil cleanser is cheap, gentle, suitable for all skin types and comes highly recommended by most Australian dermatologists. Rosehip oil, applied morning and night on your face and decolletage will you a super hydrated, radiant complexion. Bloom, A'kin and Trilogy versions retail for only $20-$25, and a little goes a long way. Hamilton's various sunscreen formulas are available at most pharmacies and will keep your skin protected all day long.

5. If you have opted to do your own make-up, the bare minimum is as follows:

A tinted moisturiser, to even out skin tone. Dove does a beautiful one for less than $10.
Concealer, blended under eyes and over any redness and imperfections, to give a flawless complexion. CoverGirl and Olay Simply Ageless Concealer is creamy and luscious, and under $20.
You can visit your kitchen pantry for this one... cornstarch! It is amazing used as a setting powder over make-up, with a big fluffy brush.
You can use the same brush to sweep bronzer on your cheeks and decolletage for gentle warmth, glow and definition. Australis does a lovely pressed mineral bronzing powder that will last you a lifetime - it is massive!
An eyeshadow palette will cater to all your eye make-up needs, including your eyeliner. Just wet a thin eyeshadow brush, dip it into a dark, dense colour and "push and wiggle" it along the lash line for definition. Revlon Custom Eyes Palettes include both eyeshadow and eyeliner shades. Sweet Innocence and Naturally Glamorous would be my picks for a beautiful wedding look.
When it comes to mascara, you cannot go past Maybelline for quality and value for money. Different formulas cater for desired results; but my favourite is XXL, for dramatic volume, length and definition.
Finish with a creamy, highly pigmented lipstick... on your lips AND cheeks. That's right, your lipstick can double as a lovely, dewy, radiant cream blush! Just dab it onto the apples of your cheeks and blend with your fingers. Revlon Colour Burst Lipstick in Blush is the perfect nude-pink for a classic bridal look, and retails for under $25.

6. Whether or not you do your own make-up, you will need a few products to touch up with during the day. Blotting papers are cheaper than powder and do the same job; refreshing and mattifying the complexion without disrupting your makeup. Also, keep your lipstick with you to refresh your lip and cheek colour.

7. It's all in the details. Don't forget to paint your nails the night before!
Revlon's Sheer Nude is chic and elegant. Finish with Sally Hansen's top coat to prevent chips and enhance longevity.

And that is wedding beauty on a budget! If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask Laura in the comments section below. She will be more than happy to give you advice or point you in the right direction. All the best.

Laura Curtis is a beauty writer and make-up artist. To see more of her writing and beauty advice, you can visit her blogs One April Morning and Pretty Poesy, and follow her on Twitter (@laura_valerie).

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