DIY Wedding Makeup Tutorial

DIY bride Sarah is back with a DIY wedding makeup tutorial…

My finished makeup look

My finished makeup look. Shot by Maria Farrelly

Some brides either can’t afford to hire a professional or don’t like the idea of someone else doing their makeup, so doing it yourself is a great alternative. After all, who knows your face better than you?! I’ve put together this handy guide for brides (and bridesmaids!) thinking of doing their own makeup. I’m a redhead with naturally pale, slightly dry skin so the products I used reflect that.

The look

As my dress was a champagne colour I decided to go for a gold eye makeup look with a natural looking face. I don’t wear a lot of makeup in my day to day life so the amount of product I was wearing felt a little much, but I knew it’d have to last all day and there would probably never be a day where more photos of me were going to be taken ;)

A lot of these products I already owned, which cut down on the cost. I’m a big fan of Benefit so I bought a couple of pieces from them (like my mascara and concealer) that I knew I’d use again after the wedding. Things like eye makeup I spent less on because I’ve tried high end and budget in the past and never noticed a massive range of difference. My blusher and lipstick were things I already owned, which meant I was already comfortable wearing and applying them, something worth remembering! :)

Products used


Anything marked with a * is a product I owned in my usual makeup bag.



*1. Clinique Moisture Surge Moisturiser – £32 (mine was a freebie from a magazine)
2. Stila tinted moisturiser SPF30 – £7.99 (I paid £6 through BrandAlley. This doesn’t seem to be available directly through Stila any more)
3. Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer – £25 (mine was a free sample from Boots)
4. Benefit Bo-ing concealer – £16.50
5. Rimmel Wake Me Up foundation – £8.99

*1. Natural Collection Loose Powder – £1.99
*2. Benefit High Beam – £18.50
*3. Natural Collection Blushed Cheeks blusher – £1.99 (I used the cream blush version of this which isn’t available online)
*4. Benefit Benetint Pocket Pal lip & cheek stain – £15.50 (another freebie from a magazine)



1. Barry M Dazzle Dust shade 101 Buff – £4.59
*2. Urban Decay eyeshadow in Honey shimmer – £14 (not available in the UK any more, unfortunately)
3. Benefit ‘They’re Real!’ waterproof mascara – £18.50
4. Barry M Liquid Glitter Eyeliner in gold – £4.99
5. Barry M  Metallic Liquid Eyeliner in gold – £4.79



*1. Benefit Benetint Pocket Pal lip & cheek stain – as above
*2. Eyeko Fat Balm in cherry (no longer available)

Actual cost to me: £65. The big difference between this and hiring a professional is that I get to keep all the products I bought, so I feel like I’m definitely getting my monies worth. (Plus I saved myself over £70 by using samples :) )

Step by step guide

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1. Apply moisturiser all over, taking special care on any dry spots. Give it time to absorb – I did mine before having my hair done, and then the rest of my makeup afterwards.

2. Apply tinted moisturiser all over, then concealer if needed. Remember to do your eyelids to help set your eyeshadow.

3. Apply eye makeup – eyeshadow, then mascara then eye liner is usually the way I do it. I used my Urban Decay as a base, and then finger patted the Dazzle Dust over the top of that before using the metallic eyeliner as a base with the glitter in a thin line over the top.

4. Clean up any dropped eye shadow from under your eyes and your cheeks, then apply primer and foundation. Sweep downwards when applying your foundation as that helps the hairs on your face (we’ve all got them ladies, it’s okay) to stay in the direction that they grow, giving you a more even looking coverage.

5. Apply cheek stain and then blusher. A little goes a long way with blusher, so sweep gently and tap the brush on the back of your hand before applying to avoid clumps of colour.

6. Apply lipstain and lipstick (I’d suggest doing this just before you leave, so that you don’t have to worry about eating, drinking and brushing your teeth!)


Top tips

  • A lot of the makeup counters in big department stores will offer make overs for free. It’s a great way of testing out products from brands without having to shell out for something you potentially may not like. Before my wedding I had my makeup done by Smashbox – everyone had raved about their products but on me they felt cakey and dry. The one product I did come away with was the photo-finish foundation primer, which I received a sample of – more than enough for the wedding, saving me £25!
  • Don’t feel like you have to buy an entire new set of make up just for your wedding. I used a mix of old and new to create my look for the day.
  • Look out for free samples with magazines. Quite often you can find higher end cosmetic companies like Benefit or Clinique giving away smaller sizes of their popular make up, perfect for trialling or using for something specific like a wedding.
  • If you have a Boots advantage card then make sure you remember to use it – there are usually a few ‘extra points’ deals around too so worth investigating before you shop.
  • If you do nothing else, invest in a good waterproof mascara. Trust me.
  • Don’t buy a ‘light reflecting’ foundation, powder, concealer or primer. While they work well in the flesh, on camera it can make it a bit difficult to get a natural looking photo. Stick to matt products to avoid high shine issues.
  • Find a product that can do more than one thing. I love my lip and cheek tint from Benefit because I can use it in two places, which saved me having to pay twice!

Hopefully this has helped you feel a little more confident about doing your own makeup on the day, if that’s what you want to do. If you’ve got any more top tips or questions then please leave them in the comments!

We’ve also got a professional make up shoot coming up on the blog soon (featuring Charlie as a guinea pig), so watch out for that :)