Skip to main content

Wedding Guide

The Beauty Regime

All brides want to look radiant on their wedding day. It's the one day you can be completely self-indulgent and demand perfection in every way. However, to have beautiful glowing skin, perfectly poised for your wedding makeup, preparation in the weeks and months leading up to your nuptials is just as important as the look you choose for the day itself.

Jo Adams, pioneer of The Make Up and Hair Atelier, is listed as one of Quintessentially Weddings favourite suppliers, having trained to be a hair and makeup artist 17 years ago.

After many years working with celebrities and building up a network of high profile clients, Jo now offers a unique service by matching brides with their dream bridal artist. Her philosophy lies in accentuating her clients' natural beauty while understanding the rising demand of brides who want that red carpet look.

We caught up with Jo in between her and her team's busy schedule of beautifying clients across the globe.

In the weeks and months leading up to a brides wedding day, how best can she prepare in order to have the most clear and glowing complexion?

Start a good cleansing and moisturizing program, and consider consulting a dermatologist or making appointments for monthly facials. I love The HydraFacial at Waterhouse and Young for a good all round boost to tired or stressed skin My favourite anti-ageing facial is the Collagen Wave it's genius and completely non-invasive. Favourites with my A list clients are at home sheet masks such as or the Sarah Chapman

De-stress! Reserve at least one night a week for some non-wedding fun or quiet time to relax. Yoga or mediation can help with sleepless nights and keep under eye bags at bay.

What should a bride specifically look for when choosing their perfect wedding day makeup artist?

Ideally, your makeup artist should be not only highly skilled, but in tune with your personal style. Personal recommendations are great and Instagram can help you get a feel for your favourite artists. Your artist should want to know all about you and your day, I love to absorb all of the tiny styling details and my bride's usual style so that I can get a real feel for her personality. You want to be assured that on the day, you feel like yourself, only the very best version. I take each client through their skin care routine and make suggestions based on any concerns. Having your make up bag at your design appointment (a trial) is really useful as it lets your artist know what you are used to using.

How many different makeup and hairstyles should a bride try before her wedding day?

Each bride is different, but after putting together a mood board of your favourite looks, try to narrow it down to two looks for each hair and makeup. Try to have at least one fitting of your dress before your design appointment where you can see yourself in your dress from all angles. When deciding between up vs down, seeing yourself in 360 can really help you decide. A stronger vs more subtle look or a variation of liner / lip colours can be really useful and taking photos of each look essential. Trying too many looks at your trial can ultimately leave you confused, so do try and be focused so that you get the best from your trial. I tend to be super flexible and see the trial very much as a trial. I like to continue discussions about the look up until the big day, so if my bride changes her mind about anything we can discuss it in full and ensure the final look is perfect for her.

Bridal Hair and Make-Up

As makeup and hair preparation begins the morning of the wedding day, how can a bride ensure her make up remains "photo-ready" throughout the day and into the evening?

As a rule I always recommend using blotting sheets by Mac to absorb any unwanted shine and a pressed powder by Laura Mercier. At the design appointment, I would recommend any additional items in line with the specific look. On the day, your artist should use specific primers and / or a setting spray to assist with longevity. Stylist Tip: Faux lashes and subtle clip in hair pieces really add staying power to your look.

Dancing under the stars

What is the schedule for a makeup artist on the day of the wedding and is there an ideal timescale?

Your artist will put together a time plan for you and your bridal party to ensure a relaxed, calming start to the day. The appointment slots will factor in time for some behind the scenes photos, drinking champers, fun and merriment! Usually, you should aim to be in your dress around 40 minutes before you need to leave for the ceremony. This is to allow time for your photographer to get creative. Even if you are having natural reportage style photography, your photographer will want to capture you enjoying the final moments and putting the finishing touches to your look. I always advise the schedule is checked through with the photographer as some venues have unique features such as a sweeping staircase and we may need to allow time for the perfect shot.

Is there a specific look or a favourite of yours that you think works best for a bride?

When it comes to a bridal look, it's key to really pay attention to your bride's personality and style. My favourite look is one that brings a sparkle to the bride's eye as she sees herself. In keeping enough to her usual look, but special enough that it takes her breath away. I love to use many small techniques that are unidentifiable to the eye and organic to the bride's natural beauty.

Are there any new and interesting trends emerging within the makeup and hair industry?

Great skin is always in, with strobing and highlighting being highly requested. Currently there is a trend for beautifully defined eyes and lashes, with rose golds being popular colour choices. Voluminous, but natural looking hair is what most of my brides are asking for. I use clip in hairpieces like these to add undetectable fullness.

For those brides who would like to take the reins of their own styling on the day, do you have you any tips on how they can create their perfect look?

If you are getting married abroad, for example, and looking after your own hair and makeup is the only option, then I would suggest a lesson with yourself and a trusted friend who can help you create your look on the day. Artists like Charlotte Tilbury and Lisa Eldridge have wonderful vlogs where you can pick up lots of great tips. Investing in brushes for your eye makeup, a beauty blender, and a great foundation would be my must haves for a DIY make up look. For your hair, take advice from your hairdresser with regards to cut and colour. Colour makes all the difference when it comes to the appearance of your hair in photos, so discuss your planned style well in advance.

Finally, what has been your favourite make up / hair creation you have ever had to fulfil for a bride?

I'm so fortunate to have collaborated on some wonderfully unique wedding days, from Glastonbury / pagan inspired nuptials to colourful Asian celebrations. Rather than interesting, my most favourite creations have been more personal, such as transforming a particular bride's hair for her as she was recovering from alopecia. Being able to give a fellow woman a huge smile on her special day and seeing her walk down the aisle confidently is the most rewarding aspect of my job.

Special thanks must go to Jo Adams, The Hair and Makeup Atelier, for all her help in the creation of this article

Further thanks must also go to Murray Clarke and Samuel Docker for providing such beautiful imagery.

Back To Top