8 Questions To Ask Your Makeup Artist for Your Wedding Before You Book

Don't sign the dotted line until you've had a chance to ask these important questions.
Bride getting makeup done
Photo: Weddings by Nato
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by
Lauren Whalley
lauren whalley headshot
Lauren Whalley
Fashion Editor, Beauty & Inclusivity
  • Lauren writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide, with a specialty in fashion, beauty and size inclusivity.
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Lauren worked in wedding editorial for Brides, Style Me Pretty and Enaura Bridal.
  • Lauren studied public relations and advertising at the University of Central Florida.
Updated Apr 26, 2024

Booking your wedding beauty services can seem as simple as liking an artist's work on Instagram and calling it a day. But before you book, there are some very important questions to ask your makeup artist for your wedding. From understanding their experience to grasping the nitty-gritty of logistics and costs, selecting a makeup artist whose skill and style match your vision will ensure you feel flawless as you walk down the aisle.

As a recent bride myself, I can't recommend a professional makeup artist enough. They take off the pressure and stress of finding all the right makeup products and can provide expert advice, like whether airbrush vs traditional foundation is a better fit for your skin. They also know all the latest trends and have the best tricks to make your makeup last all day (and night) long. And it's super easy to find your makeup pro on The Knot Vendor Marketplace (that's how I found mine!) Once you've narrowed down your list, the best way to figure out if they fit you is to thoroughly vet them with the right questions. Here's an outline of 12 essential questions before signing that contract.

Questions to Ask Your Makeup Artist: About Background and Experience | About Budget and Pricing | About Makeup Style | About Logistics

12 Questions To Ask Your Wedding Makeup Artist

Finding your perfect wedding makeup artist might feel like finding a partner; it requires patience and compatibility. After all, they are responsible for helping you feel like your most beautiful and confident self on the big day. Basically, this is no small task and you want to make sure you find the right person for the job with a great background, fits your price point and fits your desired aesthetic. The 12 questions will easily help guide you through the decision process so you can find your perfect beauty team.

About Background and Experience

1. What is your experience with bridal makeup?

When booking a makeup artist for your wedding, it's crucial to ask about their experiences with bridal makeup. Bridal makeup is not just any other makeup application; it requires an artist who understands the nuances of creating a look that lasts all day, photographs well under different lighting and feels comfortable for hours on end. An experienced artist will have strategies for achieving these goals and can provide examples of past brides they've worked with. Ask them about any challenges they've encountered, how they've overcome them and what sets their bridal makeup services apart from everyday makeup applications.

2. Do you have a portfolio of your work I can look at?

Viewing a makeup artist's portfolio is a window into their professionalism, style, and skill level. A portfolio can be on a website, social media or both and should showcase a variety of looks, demonstrating the artist's versatility and ability to cater to different aesthetics and styles. Certain artists might cater to brides who want a natural look while others specialize in full glam. Whatever their style is, it should be reflected in their portfolio. It should also highlight their expertise in enhancing natural beauty, concealing imperfections, and creating a flawless finish. Discuss with them the looks in their portfolio, what inspired them and how they achieved them. This conversation can give you insights into their creative process and how they could tailor it to your vision.

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3. How long have you been a makeup artist?

Understanding an artist's experience level gives insight into their competency and versatility and allows you to gauge their expertise. Experienced artists often have honed their technique, are adept in managing time on a busy wedding day, and can handle the pressure of such an important event. Seasoned professionals are also more likely to have dealt with various bridal styles, personalities, and last-minute beauty emergencies, making them an invaluable part of your day-of beauty team.

About Budget and Pricing

4. What is the total cost and what does it include? How is payment handled?

Transparency in cost and services provided is fundamental when booking a makeup artist. Ask for a detailed breakdown of the total cost (e.g., trials, travel expenses, touch-up kits) and any additional charges that could arise. Understanding the payment schedule, deposit requirements, and cancellation policies will help avoid any surprises and ensure clear communication between you and the artist. This upfront knowledge enables better budgeting and planning for your wedding expenses.

5. Can you accommodate my bridal party as well? What are the costs for additional people?

Most wedding makeup artists typically offer additional services catering to your bridal party. It's a great question to ask your wedding makeup artist if you want to accommodate additional people and understand the associated costs. Skilled artists will have experience managing larger groups, ensuring everyone looks their best while keeping a close eye on the schedule. They should provide a clear pricing structure for additional services and packages for bridal parties. This streamlines your wedding day beauty preparations and makes for a fun, bonding experience with your bridal party.

About Makeup Style

6. How do you decide on the right bridal look for each bride?

Every bride has a unique style and vision for their wedding day look. A good makeup artist will start with a consultation or makeup trial to understand these preferences, your wedding theme, dress style and any inspirations you may have. They should ask questions about what makes you feel most beautiful and comfortable and suggest ideas that align with your personality and wedding aesthetics. This collaborative approach should ensure that the final look reflects the person you want to see in the mirror on your wedding day.

7. Can you accommodate my skin type/skin concerns?

It's essential to discuss any skin concerns you have with your potential makeup artist. Whether you have sensitive, dry, oily or combination skin, or are worried about acne, rosacea or scars, your makeup artist should know how to tailor their products and techniques to your needs. A skilled artist will be familiar with a variety of skin types and conditions and will be able to recommend the best makeup options that offer coverage without causing irritation or exacerbating any issues. They should be willing to perform a patch test if necessary, to ensure the products they use won't cause adverse reactions on your wedding day. If you have allergies to certain chemicals, it is important to communicate that with your artist before booking.

8. What brands and types of makeup products do you use?

The quality and type of makeup products used can significantly affect the longevity and appearance of your wedding day makeup. Inquire about the brands your makeup artist prefers and why they choose them. Are they cruelty-free, hypoallergenic, or specially formulated for high-definition photography? An artist who invests in high-quality, professional-grade products demonstrates their commitment to providing the best results for their clients. Again, they should also be open to discussing any brand preferences or allergies you have.

About Logistics

9. How long will the makeup application take on the wedding day?

Understanding the beauty timeline is critical to ensuring the day proceeds smoothly. A professional makeup artist will give you a detailed breakdown of how long each person's makeup will take, allowing you to plan accordingly. They will also likely contact your wedding planner before the big day to confirm this information. It's important they factor in not just the application time, but also setup, adjustments, and any potential delays. An experienced artist will be efficient and allocate enough time to achieve perfect results without rushing, ensuring a relaxed and enjoyable experience.

10. What is your policy on cancellations or emergencies?

If 2020 taught us anything, it's that life is unpredictable. Knowing how your makeup artist handles unexpected changes or emergencies is essential. They should have a clear, written policy on cancellations, whether from your side or theirs, including any deadlines, refunds or deposits. In the case of an emergency on their end, they should be able to provide a trusted replacement artist of equivalent skill. This assurance helps manage stress and ensures you're not left without a professional on your big day.

11. Do you travel to the wedding location, or must I come to your studio?

Convenience and comfort are key on your wedding day. Many makeup artists offer the option to travel to your venue, ensuring a seamless and stress-free experience. Discuss any travel fees and logistics in advance, including setup requirements and timing. Some artists will travel for free if it's within a certain mileage and then upcharge if it's outside of that. If they require you to visit their studio, consider how this fits into your day-of timeline and whether it aligns with your preferences for a relaxing and convenient experience.

12. What happens if I need a touch-up kit for the wedding day?

Touch-ups may be necessary to maintain your perfect look throughout the celebrations. A professional makeup artist should offer options for a touch-up kit and advise on how best to use it. The kit might include items like blotting papers, powder, lipstick, and concealer. They can demonstrate how to apply these products so you'll feel confident managing minor touch-ups. Some make-up artists even offer to stay at your venue to provide on-site touch-ups for an additional fee to keep you looking fresh and confident.

With this comprehensive set of questions, you'll be well on your way to securing a makeup artist who understands your vision and will provide you with a beautiful, lasting bridal look. Ready to begin your search for the perfect wedding beauty pro?

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