Ask the Expert

Beauty tips for a photo-ready look

Q: My wedding will be one of the most photographed events of my life and I want to look my best for the camera. Do you have any beauty tips to help me create a timeless, flattering and photo-ready look?

A: Timelessness is one of the first words that comes to mind when I consult with a bride about her hair and makeup for her big day. You want photos that will stand the test of time to look back on years later. My biggest piece of advice to help a bride and bridal party prepare is to do your homework. Research the people and beauty team you desire to work with far ahead of time; I normally recommend this be done up to six months before the wedding day.

So many of the beauty decisions a bride makes relies on the dress she chooses, whether she chooses a traditional white dress, a champagne colored dress, or a dress of a more unique color and design. Once a dress style and color has been chosen, I always advise the bride to wear an outfit that is of the same color as her dress to all of her makeup and hair consultations so that she can get a good sense of what the finished look will be on the wedding day. This is especially important when it comes to incorporating the perfect hair accessories with your stylist. This ensures that everything will be on point for your big day ahead of time.

Another component that is often overlooked is hiring enough people on your beauty team to tend to the bride, her wedding party and relatives. The bride should always have her own delegated stylist on the day of the wedding. Time and time again, I have seen the bride allow her wedding party and relatives be tended to ahead of her own styling. That often creates unneeded stress for the bride and risks putting her styling behind schedule. Once you’ve decided whom you are hiring, it is very important to sign a contract with the specific date and timing of the entire day clearly outlined from start to finish, including needed touchups prior to photos, the reception and dress changes.

Planning and practicing with your beauty team is crucial to pulling off a picture-perfect wedding day. Make sure you do trial runs of any products you plan to use as well, including makeup, lashes and self-tanning products. Lastly, I always recommend monthly facials a few months ahead of the date of the wedding. Every bride ought to have glowing skin on her wedding day, and it will reflect in the photos of one of the most important days of your life that you want to last a lifetime.

Shelley South, a master stylist with 28 years of experience and the owner of Yu Beauty Lounge in Anchorage.