AYW Exclusive: How to Have a Flawless Hair & Makeup Trial

One of the most fun decisions our brides make during the wedding planning process is choosing their hair and makeup artist for their big day. This decision making process is, typically, just that- a process. After all, what a bride looks and feels like on her wedding day is hugely important. So, choosing someone who will effectively capture the look + feel you’re hoping to step out in on the most special (and most photographed!) day of your life- takes a little time, effort, and careful consideration.

Hair and makeup trials can be scheduled as you are in the process of choosing your stylist, and/or after you’ve booked a particular HMU artist. In the case of the latter, a trial run is performed weeks before your wedding day to ensure that the hair and makeup style you have in mind is exactly how you envision it to be. For either occasion, we’ve compiled a list of tips and tricks to help you have a flawless hair and makeup trial:


Photo by: Allison Davis

1. Be prepared for a fee: often, a trial run will cost you. However, in many cases, this fee may be waived or included in your final quote should you decide to book with the stylist.

2. Schedule your trial on the same day of your bridal or engagement portraits- this way, you get the most bang for your buck! Having your hair and makeup done professionally for your photo shoot..winning!

3. Wash and blow dry your hair the night before. Your hair will retain enough moisture over night to hold styling well, without being too dirty.

Photo by: Edmonson Weddings

4. If possible, wear white. Mimicking the color and neckline of your wedding gown gives you a more accurate vision of what your hair and makeup will look like on your actual wedding day.

5. Bring photos! Pictures of hair and makeup styles you really like or dislike, along with pictures of your wedding dress, give the stylist valuable aesthetic guidance.

6. Limit the number of people you bring along. Too many voices of opinion can create chaos.

Photo by: Mary Beth Tyson

7. Bring your bridal accessories, if you have ‘em. It’s hugely helpful to see how certain hair styles pair with your veil, headband, jeweled clips/pins, etc.

Photo by: Rocky + Sara Garza

8. Be explicit about what you want- don’t be afraid to say you dislike something the stylist suggests. After all, it’s your wedding day! The HMU artist wants you to be completely satisfied.

9. Take note of which products the stylist uses. It’s never a bad idea to purchase mini-bottles of must-have products to have on hand for touch ups before the reception!

10. Take pictures during the trial of each hair or makeup style you try for future reference.

Photo by: Amy Karp

12. If you’ve definitely decided on a particular hair or makeup look, ask the stylist if there are any particulars you could be doing in the months + weeks leading up to your wedding day. Would it be helpful to have your hair cut or highlighted a certain way to enhance an up-do? Any expert tips for extra glow-y bridal skin?

13. Pay attention to your post-trial look. It’s important to see how long your hair and makeup stays photo-ready after styling and application!

Photo by: Amy Karp

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