How to Figure Out What Your Wedding Hairstyle & Makeup Look Should Be

If you're wondering how to choose your wedding hairstyle or what makeup look to go for, here's exactly where to find your inspiration.
maddy sims the knot associate editor
Maddy Sims
maddy sims the knot associate editor
Maddy Sims
Former Associate Editor
  • Maddy is a Brand and Social Content Manager at Birdy Grey, and was a former associate editor at The Knot.
  • Maddy has written for several different publications, including HUM Nutrition, Insider, Bustle, Real Simple and Apartment Therapy.
  • Maddy has a Bachelor's degree in magazine journalism and a Master's degree in health, science and environmental reporting (both of which are from Northwestern's Medill School of Journa...
Updated Dec 16, 2019

Out of all the decisions you'll have to make around your nuptials, choosing a wedding day beauty look might be one of the most daunting. After all, you're going to be taking lots of photos, so you want to make sure you nail it. But how do you choose a wedding hairstyle and makeup look with all of the options out there? Maybe you're feeling completely lost in a sea of pictures on Pinterest and Instagram, or maybe you have no idea where to even begin with your search. The good news is that all the research and wedding planning you've completed can help you narrow down your beauty look. Here are eight places for bridal beauty inspiration in case you're stuck with the dilemma of how to choose a wedding hairstyle and makeup look. Once you've decided on a day-of 'do, work with a professional stylist to bring it to life.

Your Venue

If you've already picked your venue, your wedding hair and makeup can easily be based on that decision. Your wedding setting can determine what bridal hair and makeup look might work best, like if loose waves and a bronze glowy look for a beach wedding. If you're getting married in a formal ballroom, try an elegant hairstyle like a sleek top knot or smooth curls. Match the drama of the venue by opting for a bold makeup look (think: a statement lip or a cat eye). It's also important to consider the weather. If it's going to be humid, an updo might be the best call, whereas crisp outdoor weddings might be the perfect occasion for a beautiful blowout.

Your Outfit

Turn to your wedding attire if you're stuck on the topic of how to choose a wedding hairstyle and makeup look. What you're wearing to the celebration can serve up plenty of beauty inspiration, so focus on the neckline, shape, material, color and formality to help clue you in on the hair and makeup look that'll make you look (and feel) best.

Your Color Scheme

If you have your wedding color palette picked out, you can use those colors as inspiration for your wedding day look. Incorporate the hues you've selected for your wedding day into your hair and makeup. (For example: If purple is your accent color, consider a muted violet smokey eye to match. If you're going for a simple green and white color scheme, keep your hair and makeup on the same level by opting for a natural beauty look.)
Your Wedding Style

Since you want your hair and makeup to jive with the actual celebration, consider what style you're going for on your wedding day. Have a vintage theme? Smooth curls and a bold lip color will be a fit, whereas a boho theme is better matched with a bridal beauty aesthetic that includes loose waves and lighter makeup.

Your Wedding Time

The time of day of your wedding celebration can help inform your bridal hair and makeup decision. This is especially important as different lighting often calls for different makeup. If you're planning on a casual daytime ceremony, you can opt for a lighter beauty look, but if your wedding is a black-tie evening affair, you may need a bolder look to stand out in the dim lighting. Consult a makeup artist to get their professional opinion about this factor if you're feeling unsure.


Your Personal Touches

Maybe you have a sparkly headpiece that you're wearing, or maybe you're planning on smoldering makeup against the sea of candelabras illuminating your reception hall. Use these touches to help guide your wedding hair and makeup.

Your Hair and Skin Type

When it comes to choosing a wedding hairstyle and makeup look, it's best to keep in mind what you're working with. The length and texture of your hair may lend itself to certain styles more than others. Similarly, your skin type may inform your makeup choices. Consult a professional to find what they think will work best for you.

Your Personal Preference

It's important to remember that your wedding day is your day. You should wear what makes you feel comfortable and confident. If you have a lip color or hairstyle that makes you feel beautiful no matter what, start with that one thing and work your look around it.

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