Introducing: Wedding Day Beauty How-To’s

by Meg Keene, CEO & Editor-In-Chief

So before we dive into Ask Team Practical today, we have big news, you guys! Exciting news! (I know, like the news about my pregnancy wasn’t big enough for the week? But no, the universe is spinning fast these days.) So a story.

A few weeks ago we mentioned, in my post on hair and makeup and feminism, that we’d done an APW beauty shoot on a pony farm. I know y’all, but Maddie LIVES on a pony farm (this is not a joke). This happened after lots of requests from you guys for help on DIY hair and makeup for weddings (because I’m apparently not the only one around here who’s into doing her own beauty routine on her wedding day). So! We pulled together a team of awesome stylists (more on that in a minute), got some APWers together (who were multi-ethnic! Tutorials for all kinds of skin and hair!), ordered a bunch of Mexican food, and got down to having way too much fun with fake eyelashes.

But then something kind of amazing happened. APW Associate Editor Maddie got her magic on. And suddenly (literally, suddenly, I’m not making this seem more dramatic than it really was) Procter & Gamble was interested in sponsoring an APW Beauty Shoot. Like us, they think you should be able to look hot (however you define hot) on your wedding day, using makeup you can buy affordably at your local drugstore. They also told us we could do our normal APW thing with the series, just the way we always do. It was a perfect match.

So! Right after the Fourth of July, the crew is getting together again to do an even cooler DIY Hair and Makeup shoot (I know that seems impossible, given that last time we were on a PONY FARM, but think industrial spaces, crazy hair garlands, and lots of girl time), this time sponsored by P&G Beauty & Grooming (think Cover Girl, Olay, Pantene and Herbal Essences to name a few). Just. In. Time. For. Summer. Weddings. (And yes, we’re still bringing you the epic pony farm shoot, but that’s coming in the fall.)

The most amazing part, the part that should make all of us want to kiss the lovely people at Procter & Gamble on the lips, is this next bit. APW has become a very big thing running on a very small budget this year (hello crazy amazing growth, we love you, also we’re tired). So thanks to Procter & Gamble, we’re not just going to get to bring you hair and makeup tutorials, we’re also going to get to use the money to invest directly in the site and the APW community. It’s such a huge deal for me I don’t even have words for it. I’m more excited about this than I would be about more naps (and goodness knows I could use some more naps).

Tell Us What You Want:

We’ll be bringing you this new content in two short weeks (yayyy!), but we’re planning the shoot right this second. So summer brides, tell us what you want. What makeup tutorials would your really love? What hairstyles do you want to know how to do? We’re covering all kinds of skin and hair, so give us your wish list, and get the stylists thinking.

Which brings us to the stylists. Y’all. They are amazing. Luckily for all of us, they’ll be hanging around APW this summer, passing on their skills. (Hurrah!) Let me tell you about them (particularly for you Bay Area ladies who are less DIY inclined):

Nichole (hair): Cool tattoos. Laid back attitude. Mom of two (who started giving me amazing tips the second she figured out I was pregnant). Into classic with a modern edge. Known for her versatility and ability to help clients find their own style. When not lending her edgy skills to the APW Hair & Makeup Tutorials, Nichole is a stylist at the Harper Paige Salon in San Francisco.

Yesenia (hair): Holy moly. Girlfriend did my hair, made me look amazing, created super hip styles in five seconds flat (and would tweak them in another five seconds if I felt like a change). I love her. Yesenia’s philosophy around her work is that being beautiful and feeling beautiful are the same thing. “I think if you feel beautiful, there’s no one that can take that away from you.” Currently a stylist at Ketér Salon, in Berkeley, this girl has the magic in her fingers, and she will make you laugh.

Shana Astrachan (makeup): Remember how you were all gasping over my makeup (and my sneaky fake eyelashes) in the makeup and feminism post? That’s all Shana’s work, and she’s actually that good in real life, and then some. She’s the crazy talented artist behind the company Fox & Doll, serving the whole Bay Area, and specializing in vintage-inspired and classic hair and makeup. She has a background in fine art and metalworking (I know) and a passion for crafts and DIY endeavors. This woman is the real deal.


So, a huge hat tip from the APW team to the Procter & Gamble team. We can’t wait to bring you these tutorials.

Now it’s your turn. Tell us the styles you’d most like to know how to do, and we’ll work on making it happen. With flowers. And fun. And documentation. Let’s do it.

Please note that these stylists are part of the APW Hair & Makeup Team and are not affiliated with P&G Beauty & Grooming.

Photos by: Emily Takes Photos (APW Sponsor)

Meg Keene

Meg is the Founder and EIC of APW. She has written two best selling wedding books: A Practical Wedding and A Practical Wedding Planner. Meg has her BFA in Drama from NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts. She lives in Oakland, CA with her husband and two children. For more than you ever wanted to know about Meg, you can visit #NASTY

Staff Picks

[Read comment policy before commenting]

  • kckp

    I’d love to see some ways to fancy up short (like pixie-cut short) hair.

    • j

      YES please! Most “short” hairstyles seem to be women with at least a bob, if not longer–show us pixie-haired gals some styles!

      • E

        Yes to short hair! I’ve been growing mine out since I got engaged but it’s still in the awkward in-between phase. Might just chop it off again before my wedding.

        • I just made an appointment to cut 3-4 inches off my hair. I get married 3 months from today. Do it!

        • I did the same thing, but I have always loved my hair short. As much as I resisted the cultural narrative of long hair=feminine/bridal, I still kept trying to grow out this awkward style because I thought it would be more ‘versatile’. Looking back, I wish I would have not cared about versatile, and instead gone with the (pixie) cut that really makes me feel like me.

      • mimi

        I have a curly/wavy bob and I’d like to see styles for that too! :)

        • Tracy

          I also have naturally curly/wavy hair that I usually wear short(ish)! I’d love to see something for short, curly hair that harkens to the 1920s.

    • Julia

      Yes to short hair styles, please!

    • Cindy

      Glad to see I’m not the only one with this issue! Pin straight, semi-fine, short hair that doesn’t hold curl to save it’s life. I begged my Mom for a perm in middle school, and I had curls for 2 days before it fell flat again.

      I really only have two styles – straight and down or awkward ponytail (with lots of fly-aways). Fancy short hair styles would be awesome!

      • kyley

        Hello hair twin! It is so nice to meet you.

      • Breezy

        I think we are triplets.

      • MP

        Hair quadruplets! My fine, straight hair takes way too much work to look good long. I’ve finally found my Spirit Haircut, and it’s a pixie that’s a little longer on top.

        I would LOVE to see a wedding hairstyle for super-short hair. Preferably one that involves flowers, if it’s not too much to ask.

      • Katie H

        Yes! Me too! super fine, straight, and won’t even hold the curl long enough to get out my front door!

    • Yes! Short hair yes! Mine’s not pixie short but it’s not long enough to pull back into any kind of ponytail. I got married a few months ago and ended up just leaving it down-it looked good but it would be so awesome to get some ideas! Sometimes styling short hair is just so difficult. You have to be more creative, I guess!

    • So neat to see so many of you wanting to dress up your hair beyond the pretty cuts you already have. An easy way to go is with a large fresh flower pinned in the side. Choose something that is in season and resilient, you can even wait till the day of and see what is available and inspires you. Wrap the stem in floral tape to give it some extra strength and a spot to pin through! This is such a pretty (and easy) way to dress up all lengths of hair.

      One of my favorite images I repined on my Pinterest…


  • Fliss

    I’d like to see make up / hair which is aimed at the “older” bride – I’ll be heading to 43 when I get married. And – Short hair styles, please !

    • Kate

      Yes! Short hair please! I have the kind that wants to be heavy and straight no matter what. LOVE all the cute textural stuff that they always show for short-haired girls with a bit of wave or curl, but mine is pin straight and will not hold curl. It might be as stubborn as I am! Help me make it fancy, please!

  • Naturally curly hair! Naturally curly hair!

    Please don’t make me straighten it. Please don’t make me straighten it and then RE-CURL IT in a sleek and fashionable way (which, actually, is what’s going on in my little icon up there. I should change that to be more reflective of who I am on, you know, a day to day basis).

    PLEASE give some love to us curly girls.

    • Smilicow

      I simply cannot exactly this comment enough!! Please, please, please give some love to us curly girls!

      • KB

        I want to “exactly” this comment like 42 times. I almost never wear my naturally curly hair down because I never know if it will look f’amazing or just a kinked-up mess. But I hate the time it takes to straighten and/or recurl. It would be great to get some half-up/half-down styles – ooh, and hair jewelry!! I picked up a hair accent the other day (a cute tiara-ish comb) but when I tried to put it in, it just looked really dumb.

        • Alexandra

          Oooo, yes to naturally curly, half-up/half-down styles. I swear, natural curls are such a gamble. They either look gorgeous or they look all frizzy. If I thought I could guarentee they wouldn’t just become frizzy, I would do my own hair.

          • Snow Gray

            YES for curly (and wavy!) half-up/half-down styles, especially tips for dealing with frizz!

    • YES!!

      I have naturally curly hair and I — SHOCKER — don’t want to put it up for my wedding. I want my hair on my wedding day to look like I’m having the best hair day of my life, but be relatively normally styled. So I’m looking for a way to get good curl definition, minimal frizz, and good body. (Aka, what I would do normally if I were a more high maintenance person and had unlimited time and patience in the morning.)

      • Elizabeth

        I have long naturally curly hair and wore it down for my wedding. Here’s what worked for me: I used more conditioner than normal and left a fair amount in, added lots of gel (two I recommend: Yanai Van strong hold gel, Moroccan Oil Intense Curl Cream), brushed it out, and let it dry naturally. I had a stylist pull back a few pieces and bobby pin them so they wouldn’t be in my face (and so I had kind of a half-up, half-down style, but more like 10% up, 90% down), but I probably could have had a friend do that too since it was so simple. I’ve dealt with a dearth of helpful tips for naturally-curly-haired people my whole life, so I know how it is and am sharing this in case it’s helpful for anyone who wants to rock her curls. :) Good luck!

    • Amy

      I think “reflective of who I am on a day to day basis – but fancier” is exactly how I want to look

    • Jen

      Yes!! Even when I straighten my hair it looks frizzy. I would rather it look nice AND curly!

    • My favorite trick for curly hair is to make it MORE curly! Use a few different size curling irons and add in some extra curls that have a bit more body to them. Then proceed with your style from there.

      And for those of you asking for half up / half down styles I will post a link in the main thread for a recent tutorial I just did showing my ’60’s mini bouffant’ – just skip the last step and keep the curls flowing. It’s a bit of a retro look so maybe it isn’t for everyone, but it can be made very classic.


    • Just L

      Yes, exactly!!! Natural curls, with hair shorter than shoulder length. Some kind of funky braid thing on one side, but something that still looks ok with the curls, is it even possible?!

    • Please! My twin did my hair for the wedding, which was awesome because she’s had to deal with the same naturally curly long hair all her life, and she knows exactly how it feels to walk out of a beauty salon crying because someone decided that curls need to be straightened. So YES! Please include long curly hair styles!

  • Jen

    I’d love to learn what I’m supposed to do with my eyebrows! Everything I read tells me that they “define the face” and are super important if you’re going with a minimal make-up route…but i’m not sure what that means! Do i go to a professional, order a template, fill them in with color…so confused! Thank you!!

    • I suggest a brow wax before. Even if you don’t have thick dark hair this makes a huge difference. Picking up any vellus (fine and light) hairs really helps define your brows and open your eyes. A recent bride I am working with made the following comment a few weeks after her first wax, “After 33 years of never touching my brows, I’m officially hooked – they look awesome!”

      Ask your brow person to be conservative and do it for the first time at least a month in advance (to monitor and reaction), then again the week before. Stick with the same person to do them, someone you trust.

      And to define use powder on a brow brush (not pencil), it looks more natural.

      Hopefully this helps. I love the difference a little brow love makes!


      • Hannah

        I agree with the above (my eyebrows have always looked best after a really well-done wax), HOWEVER, PLEASE be cautious about who you let near your brows…I went to a walk-in salon once for a touch-up, and literally had to cut bangs to hide the horrifyingly thin brows she left me with.

  • Brefiks

    I think a great conundrum for brides who may be getting married outside is, how do I wear SPF and still look camera-friendly? I’m pale as a ghost and I normally wear SPF everywhere I go, but I know it can mess up photos and make you look sweaty (as every summer picture of me attests.) I did my own makeup for my June 2 wedding and I finally just threw in the towel and prayed not to get burned.

    Another makeup question: Long wearing lip color. Is it a myth? (After many fruitless searches that either dried out my lips, disappeared or both, I just picked a colored balm I could reapply without looking.)

    Congrats to the APW team!

    • Kate

      This please! I would honestly read a thesis on the interaction between SPF and camera lenses. Also perhaps what kind of body sunscreens won’t ruin your dress?

      • Elisabeth

        In case this isn’t covered, I highly recommend face sunscreens that Kiehls and Clarins make. They’re both specifically for the face, and not really waterproof so meant for daily wear (not for exercising or the beach) but they go on unlike any other sunscreen I’ve ever tried and wear perfectly under makeup. They’re part of my daily routine!

      • Kat

        I’ve found any face cream that is non-comdogenic (won’t clog you up from here til Sunday) and has an SPF in it is really good. I use Neutrogena’s face cream (comes in a little tube) and works super well and I never look or feel greased up.

    • Peggy

      I’d like to second the question about long lip wear. Interested in both the technique and recommended products.

  • Rachel

    I am one of those people who e-mailed in to ask about DIY hair/makeup, so I am REALLY excited about this. I really want to wear my hair half up, half down, so I would love any styles that make that look nice but simple. My hair is fine/wavy, so I’d love any advice on how to make my hair hold the style. As for make-up, I would just like to know how to properly prep my face – e.g., are their certain moisturizers or foundations that I should/should not use? Are there products that will look weird in pictures? Etc.

    Thanks APW!

    • amy

      I’d like to second the ‘half up half down’ hair request. So many of the hairstyles I see for weddings are updos. And I definitely don’t want an updo. But I do want my hair to not all be in my face, either.

    • MDBethann

      I did half up, half down for my wedding last month and you’re right – style suggestions for that are sooooo hard to find. I grew my hair out to shoulder length (had been much shorter and is again). My hairdresser put in gel and then put my hair in hot rollers since I have really straight, fairly fine hair. She then took sections of hair from each side of my face and did a small braid back along each side of my head. Where the two braids came together, she put some pins, but the effect created this perfect pocket for my veil comb at the back top of my head (this also mean that the poofy part of the veil was not right on the top of my head – score!!). She then used hairspray to hold everything in place. My curls made it through the ceremony, pictures, and a chunk of the reception, but I got hot dancing so a lot of them fell.

      My inspiration was Disney’s Belle from Beauty and the Beast. I’ve always loved her hair and never had enough to do the twist, but side braids worked really well.

    • Elenka

      I cant Exactly enough the request for advice on making hair hold the style. I feel like my hair won’t hold a style for more than 30 seconds but I’d really love to wear my hair half up/half down for my wedding & I plan on dancing my butt off at the reception. I’m a little worried that I’ll end up looking like a drowned rat (a drowned rat having a kick-ass time, but a drowned rat nonetheless).

      Please help!

  • Lisa

    How to wear a fascinator/hair decorations with short hair. I want to keep my short hair for my wedding, and I think I want something like a fascinator, birdcage veil, or cool hair clip, but I’m not sure how to work that into my short hair. (My hair is really short in back, like seriously buzzed, and longer in front, it sort of swoops across to my right side and makes a point).

    Also, I guess this is sort of a given, but I’d love to see some easy make up I can do myself (or with my friends), that doesn’t look overly “made up”.

    • Lisa

      And waterproof eye make up. Because I’m a crier.


      • amy

        YES to this. Even when I don’t cry, my eye makeup always seems to smudge. I can’t imagine how awful my regular makeup will be if I start seriously crying.

    • KM

      and how to wear a fascinator with naturally curly (shoulder length) hair. feathery fascinators all around!

    • Lana

      How/where on my (bobbed) head to wear a fascinator or birdcage veil…or one of those little circle hat-things…or something completely crazy like a big, tulle poof thing or a real hat (’cause I really am thinking about it). Is that too much for short hair?

  • Laura M

    what do I do about the dark circles under my eyes? (yes I’ll try and get lots of sleep, but I don’t want to bank on that just before wedding!), leading on to glasses or not? (yes I can see without them on and hugs are easier without, but day to day they do such a good job of hiding dark circles)
    fake eyelashes vs mascara? which is better and how to best apply either please
    non-smudgy lipstick? I want to kiss my husband (woo can’t wait) as much as possible, but I don’t think he’d appreciate red smudges all over his face…

    • Emily

      First, THANK YOU to APW for planning the DIY hair & makeup post. You all are so great a focusing on real-world issues, and I cannot wait to see the posts on real-world beauty!
      Secondly, Help with the eyes – yes, please! The dark circles and under-eye puffies are the thing I’m most worried about too. It doesn’t seem to matter how much sleep I get, I can never really make them go away. How can I fix/hide them short of sleeping with green tea bags on my eyes for a month?

    • Megan (from Nova Scotia)

      I totally second the dark circles…I can’t seem to get rid of them EVER!

    • Alexis

      Yes to non-smudgy lipstick recommendations! I’m planning on doing my own make-up for our wedding in a couple months and I think have everything I need except some lip color… something in a natural-rosy color. There are so many options! What works and is prefereably less than $10?

    • amy

      AGREED with both the dark under-eye circles and non-smudgy lipstick!

    • MDBethann

      Aveno has a product for dark circles and puffiness. I don’t feel like it helped a lot with my dark circles, but it DID help with the puffiness I get under my eyes when I don’t get tons of sleep. I started using it a few weeks before the wedding and I’m still using it now 2 months later.

      To deal with the dark circles, one of my friends said something about using a yellow-ish concealer under my eyes before putting my foundation on (my bridesmaids did my make up for me). I don’t wear make up day-to-day so I wanted something simple and clean that looked like me – foundation, lipstick, blush, and a little eyeliner so I wouldn’t look washed out for the camera.

  • Sarah

    I’d love to see styles for long, straight hair. Hair that won’t hold a curl, even with a gallon of hairspray Maybe a soft-looking braid? Also, how necessary is some sort of hairspray and does anyone have recommendations for one that doesn’t make you feel like you’re wearing a helmet, if the answer is “very necessary”?

    • Laura M

      I highly recommend for hair related support and youtube links for how-to videos. Though I’m sure the APW stylists will come up with some awesome stuff too!

    • Diane

      Can I second this, with the addition that it would be great to have something that works for hair that doesn’t hold a curl but doesn’t stay perfectly straight as long as the humidity is more than, say, two percent?

    • Ana Maria

      Yes please, for people with very long hair (like down to where the back becomes the butt!)!!

      And plesase share more photos from the photo shoot soon! I have only two weeks until the big day! : )

    • I’ve found that hair spray makes my long hair even heavier and the curls fall out faster. By the end of the day my hair was just completely down with just a bit of curl left at the end. I love the picture where we’re dancing and my hair is flying out behind me. That picture wouldn’t have been possible with an up-do.

    • Zeph

      This this this!
      I can’t get my hair to curl to save my life. The pros at the salon can do it but it takes forever and cost $$ and uses waaaay more product that I like. My hair needs to be mostly up for my wedding and styling it is so difficult when it is straight.

    • Kamille

      I’d like this too! I’ve got long long hair that sort of holds a curl if I try really really hard…but it mostly falls out.

  • Taylor

    AHHH! My little biracial heart just skipped a beat when I saw “all kinds of skin tones” I’m doing my own makeup, but searching around the internet for “bridal makeup tutorial” you would think that only white women get married. My skin tone is about exactly like Yesenia’s up there, so I would love to see makeup looks for brown girls. Natural looking, y’know, but big huge freakin’ fake eyelashes are still totally welcome.

    And yes! Hair tutorials for us curly girls that don’t involve straightening it all first!

    • meg

      Yes! I know! We actually talked about it with the P&G team, and they were super excited too. They were like “Yes! We only see tutorials for white ladies too! How awesome!” We owe that TOTALLY to APWer commenters though, because the first time we mentioned doing this, y’all told us what was up, and we immediately got on it (because y’all are smart).

  • Hillori

    Sensitive skin– please! Sensitive skin = the dermatologist knows as soon as you walk through the door.

    • And makeup for sensitive, acne-prone skin, please!

    • Ana Maria

      Yes! Like how to get soft skin easy…and how to get rid of (for at least a day!!) dry skin for us eczema people!

    • Kess

      Yes please!! It would be fantastic if at least other options a bit more skin friendly were mentioned

    • For you ‘sensitive’ ladies I suggest moving towards natural brands, actually I suggest this for everyone. Whole Foods carries a great line called Mineral Fusion. I love their concealer and powders, and they give a nice photo ready finish. Their mascara is great too, but not waterproof.

      Check out my favorites lists here and see the natural alternatives, with more to be added soon:


  • Ana

    I’d love to see hair styles (up and half-up) for women with “medium” length hair. My hair hits my shoulders and my fiance’s is just below her ears. JUST this week she said to me “Should we be growing our hair out? Isn’t that something brides do?” Um, no, unless you want to! I definitely do not want to. I want to look like MYSELF aka someone who has not had long hair since she was 10.

    • Here, here. I’d love to do a low, loose pony, but then the front bits don’t quite make it, and I don’t know what to do with them. And my thick hair laughs out any bobby pins I put in there.

      • MDBethann

        Braid the hair on the sides back so they meet in the middle of your head (see my response to another poster). I had shoulder length hair for my wedding and I did braids like that and had the rest of my hair curled with hot rollers.

  • LADA

    make up for natural redheads and blondes with very fair skin and lots of freckles – how to substitute black? how to cover blemishes while not covering the freckles?
    also i would really appreciate hairstyles for fair hair, both long and short

    • Shiri

      Yes! The Freckle Question. Please!

      • Breezy

        Oh, the freckle question. I have never worn makeup in my life because I can’t for the life of me understand the freckle question. And I have an art degree, so it is not as if I don’t understand color. I just don’t understand how to work in color and not hide my polka dotted face.

        • Fourth for the freckle question!

          I don’t even own foundation, because I like my freckles. I sure as hell am not getting all caked up just for my wedding. I want my makeup to show my freckles, but maybe even out some of the splotchiness.

    • ElisabethJoanne

      This natural redheads Exactly!s the substitute-black issue. Whenever I’m buying mascara, step one is to find the brands that don’t just come in “black.” That eliminates 75% of the lines out there. Which is fine, as I get overwhelmed with choices easily. But eyeliner? I don’t think I can wear black eyeliner without looking like a goth, and the alternatives I’m afraid will come out clown-y.

    • Sarah

      It doesn’t come in a waterproof version, but DiorShow’s Mitzah mascara is PERFECT for my blondish/reddish hair and super pale skin. It looks yellowish/gold on the brush, but like a slightly shimmery dark brown on. For me it doesn’t smudge or flake (even if I sleep in it), and it is also very marked down at Sephora so not that much more expensive than drugstore brands.

    • theemilyann

      Yes, yes, yes please! Natural Red-Heads (of ALL diferent shades, please, there are so many of us!)

      And its been sort of covered before – but super fine, thick, super straight hair that unless you actively do something intensive to it, you look like Snape (from Harry Potter… you know?). That’s me. Red-headded Snape! HELP!

      • Julia

        Another vote for red-head info!

      • super fine THIN long hair – my hair helmets! I would love some ideas for styles.

  • amelia

    I’d love to see some advice on foundation/concealer for acne-prone skin. Particularly, how do I mask problem spots for photos, etc. without horribly exacerbating them in the process? I thought I’d be done with zits after my teenage years or at least by mid-20’s, but no such luck–things just appear to have migrated to different parts of my face!

    p.s. I really appreciate seeing more diversity in your model selection than one might expect from typical wedding websites

    • Julia

      Agree – I have a daily routine that works well for me AND primer/foundation that I love, but I am concerned about keeping my skin tone looking even throughout the day without piling on more and more makeup. For example if I’m going to re-powder a couple hours in, should I do something to remove the remaining first layer of powder so that it doesn’t cake/look dry? Oh yeah I have that thrilling COMBINATION skin which is the very best kind – oily and dry! zitty and flakey!

    • Ambi

      This comment hit home for me because I struggled with bad breakouts all throughout my twenties and into my thirties. I tried every acne treatment system out there. FINALLY, about 6 months ago, I went to a dermatologist. My skin has been clear ever since. It was like night and day. I am so mad at myself for not doing this years ago. It really was not all that expensive (especially considering how much I’ve spent over the years on products that don’t work). Not to say that over the counter products aren’t useful, but it turns out that I needed prescription products and even an oral antibiotic.

    • meg

      Ha! Look at the models in the first picture (many of those ladies are showing up again). Different skin and hair types, different body sizes, the works.

    • Beth

      Yes, I would love some advice on makeup for combination/acne prone skin. I don’t want to keep piling more and more makeup on top of my breakouts, but I’m not sure how to cover them up and make it look “natural.”
      Thanks so much for this, I can’t wait to see the post in a few weeks!

    • amy

      Yes to this! Also, what about covering up blemishes that aren’t on the face but on some other exposed skin? Sometimes I get a zit here or there on my chest or something and those are so much harder to cover with makeup for some reason.

    • Melissa

      I too would love advice on makeup for acne prone, and even oily skin. Not only do I still have difficult breakouts, but I have a lot of scarring from acne in my teen years, and it doesn’t always cover well. It would make me so many levels of happy.

    • Kess

      Please, please, please do a good tutorial on covering acne/other annoying blemishes. I haven’t had clear skin since I was 10 and would love to have a tutorial that covers acne but doesn’t plaster your face with makeup.

      • Kess- As an esthetician turned makeup artists I would suggest you seek out an esthetician that specializes in breakouts. You can control these with proper natural based products and treatments. An essential is getting on a enzyme based exfoliation routine and adding some suplements to your diet. Lets cure what is on the surface, then you don’t have to cover up!


  • Megan (from Nova Scotia)

    I know curly hair has been mentioned, but please! Especially the kind where you get those odd curls, or the sections that really arent curly, with a side helping of frizzy fly-aways :) I really want a pretty bun-like updo that also shows off my loads of curly hair. Is that even possible! And ‘natural’ make up looks for very pale skin (the kind that shows every red mark for weeks), without that dark smoky-eye look…

    Regardless, I am going to freaking love this series of posts!

    • Vanessa

      I agree with the natural curly state, but with those of us with wavy (not tight curls) hair what can we do about defining those waves in a down hair style? Especially hair that is just past shoulders and won’t grow longer. Perhaps an old hollywood look? or carefree waves with flower garland?

      • Megan (from Nova Scotia)

        Perhaps I should clarify. No tight curls here. More like wild. Granted, it makes for awesome beach hair, since lots of volume is sort of key for that. To get fairly defined curls I have to sleep on it when its wet-and then I feel bad about wearing it up ’cause I cant figure out some way to still have the ‘bam, look at this awesomeness, and I didn’t even have to pay for it’ factor.

        But I love flowers in the hair. I bought this headbane with a big beaded applique, and I can’t believe I have to wait almost a whole year to wear it at the wedding…

        And did I mention updo’s with minimal hairspray? Takes the shine right out :(

  • Kate

    Long wear lipstick! Please! Maybe something similar to what Jane at the Hairpin is doing with mascara? Just tons and tons of reviews. I wear lipstick on the regular, but my long suffering fiance probably doesn’t want to be covered in lipstick on our wedding day.

    I feel like there’s also a gap in DIY makeup tutorials: It’s either “Ew, I never wear makeup but I guess I need to know about tinted moisturizer” or “I can put on fake eyelashes in my sleep while simultaneously perfecting my liquid liner cat eye.” What about us ladies in the middle who know their way around Sephora for everyday, but maybe want to jazz it up for the wedding?

    • meg

      That’s me, so I think we’ll have you covered. We tend to do at least one SUPER natural look, and the rest various kinds of jazzed up.

    • This, exactly! I wear eyeliner, eyeshadow, lipstick on a regular basis, and I’m not sure how to make myself look fancy without being over the top. I can put on red-hot lipstick and smoky eyes, since that’s pretty much my go-to for shmancy, but I’d kind of like alternatives. I think I’m looking for jazzed-up natural-looking makeup, if that even makes sense.

    • That Hairpin mascara comparison is amazing! I hope they do more of them with different products.

  • E

    Soooo excited about this. I’d love to see some mellow, natural-looking makeup that will still look great on the most photographed day of your life. I RARELY wear makeup, and so the other day my friend and I went and played around at Sephora. I felt like a clown with two black eyes when I got out, even though people kept telling me how great it looked.

    • Elisabeth

      I second this! I want to see natural-looking makeup that will make me feel pretty and special, but still like myself. I never wear makeup. Maybe also some things that will cover those undoubtedly tired-looking and wild eyes that I will have on that day.

    • Erin

      Yessss! My eyes aren’t dark and smokey every day, and I feel weird putting it on for special occasions. I want to know how to glam it up a /little/ while still feeling like myself.

  • Katy

    How to give yourself the perfect round brush blow out! (there are so many ways to style it from there) I have length, volume, wave and frizz and the pros can make my hair look so pretty and silky smooth, but when I do it it looks like a frizzy mess.

  • Sarah

    Eyes, definitely something about eyes. I very rarely wear make up, haven’t got the hang of where I’m supposed to start and end eyeliner and am too scared to try a liquid liner. Also, eyes that will last the day and won’t highlight the fact that I’ll be knackered at least at the end of the day, if not the beginning too. And please, understated, natural-looking…

    So exciting!!! This is just what I need… then when I head for one of those department store beauty counters I won’t be talked into buying one of everything.

  • Super waterproof smudgeproof eyes, please. Nothing too dramatic, mind you, but something a bit glam and classy that will withstand the emotional gales of being a bride: blood, sweat, and tears. This would hopefully include some great undereye concealer tips, too. My eyes always just end up a racoon-like smudgy wreck in no time, so I could really use some pointers on the durability front.

    For hair: A deconstructed French twist-like updo that doesn’t require military planning or precision would be grand. I would love to do my own hair but I am not sure I am up to it!

    • Peggy

      When I do take a stab at more dramatic eyes my eyeliner always seems to get everywhere (although mascara doesn’t seem to be a problem). Please be sure to cover how to get more intense eye makeup to stay put. And fake lashes please!

    • Sharon

      YES YES Please dear God teach us how not to look like smudgy tired raccoons after 15 minutes of wearing eyeshadow. I have never gotten the hang of it, and not for lack of effort. It’s like my mascara just seeps off my eyelashes and onto my lower lids immediately…add in August heat and I’m kinda dreading eye makeup a lot.

  • Zoo

    I’d love to see something on minimalist makeup – the “How little can I get away with if I just want to even out my skin tone and look like myself in photos?” edition. And for hair, anything not related to updos is always a plus for me.

    • Caroline

      Yes! I never ever wear makeup, I don’t even own any. So I wouldn’t want to LOOK like I was wearing makeup, but maybe wear a bit. (and I’m a fan of hair down styles, especially one for long big curly hair.

    • meg

      Minimalist makeup will TOTALLY happen. As will no-updos. We gotcha.

      • Zoo


      • Keeley

        Exactly what I was gonna ask for :)

  • SHORT HAIR STYLES!! My hair is too short to put in a ponytail and the only style anyone ever suggests is just wearing it like I always do…. fun ideas for hair pieces and different style options would be great!

  • Makeup: Shiny skin! Summer brides might get be getting hot and sweaty out there. Do I just keep powdering? Do I need some kind of mattifying thing under the foundation? Also, what makeup can I wear under the blazing 3pm summer sun without looking garish? Are we supposed to tone down the eyeliner..?

    Hair: Something that won’t take me a long time to do or require the assistance of another person (curling irons: no), is foolproof, and then stays in place. I really don’t want to be panicking about my hair on the day.

    • Along with shiny skin, how do we make the makeup stay put when it’s hot and sticky and gross outside (or inside with no AC).

  • Amanda

    I would love to see a makeup tutorial with a beautiful, natural look for the skin and a more made up eye. I purchased fake eyelashes and a “smokey-eye” makeup kit, but I’m not sure how to create the look that I want. I don’t normally wear makeup, so when I apply eye makeup on special occasions I usually wipe off a lot of it because it looks like too much makeup to me. For my wedding, I would like a more dramatic eye, but I also want to look like me. Please help!

    • KB

      YES! It would be great to have a step-by-step guide for eyes – like, I go to CVS and get the four-color eyeshadow pack, but then when I try to apply them all, it looks like a paint-by-numbers kit gone horribly wrong on my face. Yet when the girl at the beauty counter does it, it looks all blended and wonderful. ALSO – how do you get eyeshadow to stay? Is there a specific eye makeup base that I should be using? Because I try to “finish” it with pressed powder and end up rubbing it off (which isn’t so bad, compared to the paint-by-numbers look).

      • Jen

        try putting powder on before you put on shadow – powder sticks to powder, and cream sticks to cream

  • Sierra

    I’d like to learn how to achieve some hair styles that borrow the phrase “Set it and forget it!” I want to spend my time styling my long, strait, blonde hair, and then not have to think about it for the rest of the day, confident hat it still looks amazeballs.

    Also, I’d love input on coordinating hairstyles to dress styles– I picked a non-embellished mermaid style gown, but can’t decide if a super-sleek updo compliments the dress more than a softer braid, for example. THANKS!

  • amy

    Fishtail braid please and good eyeliner/eyelash tips too – am currently in the ‘know I’ll cry but want my eyes to stand out’ conundrum.

    • Amy- Use a cream/gel liner (Bobby Brown, MAC and Maybelline all make one). Apply it with a flat stiff brush and really smudge it into the lash line, and let it set (aka dry). I made some other detailed notes about lashes below. Curling is my favorite trick of all. Hope these help.


  • Erin

    You know what I want? Some realistic discussion of how long makeup should last. I mean, is it inevitable that I’m going to be reapplying lipstick after the toast (or just giving up on it)? If I do pictures after the wedding, what am I going to have to touch up and how? What about those creases you get in your eyeshadow?

    Tutorials act like you slap it on and it STAYS that way ALL DAY, but I have never ever found a makeup for which this is true. So how do you maintain? What’re the best products for doing so? And what is the realistic like– commitment to your makeup, throughout the day?

    • This is an awesome request that would never have occurred to me. Yes, please!

    • meg

      I’m sure we can help with that. That said, I re-applied lipstick after eating, and I’d say by the end of the day you could tell my makeup (and hair) had gone through some THINGS, but I actually love those end of the day pictures. I don’t look perfect like I did early on, but I look like I’ve gone through something huge. Those pictures might be prettier than the early on ones. So, that’s more philosophical perspective but there you are.

      • Exactly. My hair did NOT look like it did at the beginning of the day by the time we were leaving. My husband says I looked beautiful all day long, just different types of beautiful.

        I think one thing that helped was that I felt beautiful all day long. I might not be the best at styling my hair but I decided many years ago that my hair is what it is and if I expect it to be something else then I’ll be disappointed and think I’m having a bad hair day. I don’t have bad hair days any more. I have hair days that are awesome every now and then. But never bad hair days, just me hair days. And that little bit of personal acceptance has made a HUGE difference for me. I knew my curls would fall on my wedding day and chose not to make a big deal out of it at all.

      • Hannah

        Along these lines (and the waterproofing questions), I would be CRUSHED if my vanity (which has a history of getting out of hand) hindered me from dancing my heart out, crying my eyes out, and getting into a respectable cake-smashing war with my love. On the other hand, I’d still like to look snazzy. It’s quite a conundrum. Specifically, I want to cut cake, smash cake, and then serve cake a la Faith and Mike (aka my heroes), without needing to run to the bathroom and without my makeup looking absurd. I’m pretty sure I can rely on the loved one to not grind cake into, say, my eyelashes, dress beading, and hair, but I’d still like some frosting-friendly foundation tips that will look okay partially-wiped off.

    • I hate eyeshadow creases so much that I stopped wearing eyeshadow. But now my eyeliner gets in there? Please tell me how to stop the madness, APW!

  • Ceka

    I’d like to see a lot of hair styles for black women – both for natural hair, and relaxed hair.

    • Erica

      YES YES YES to this! Also some classic makeup tips for black women. I never wear makeup and often feel like a clown when I try it myself.

    • meg

      Interestingly, we pushed so hard to find a model with natural hair (because it’s covered less) I’m not totally sure we’ll also do relaxed hair. but we’ll see! This exact issue is currently under staff discussion, and we’re working on it.

  • Caroline

    Eye makeup for folks with glasses! (especially natural looking makeup) please!

    And can we please talk about safer makeup? If it’s above about a 3 on the EWG’s Skin Deep rating system, I won’t use it, and basically every brand of makeup I’ve ever heard of or used is. How on earth do you find safe eye makeup and lipstick (the most important to be really safe, in my opinion)? Especially when most of the small lipstick brands don’t sell in stores so you can’t try colors. Are there really good safe brands?

    Thank you!

    • meg

      In these tutorials we’ll be using all P&G brands, of course. But this is always a great subject to consider!

    • Vanessa

      second on wearing glasses!

    • Caroline, are you familiar with this blog: It doesn’t solve the problem of not being able to try on colors, but they do pretty thorough, useful reviews that have even occasionally helped me pick a color online. And is super useful for finding healthy brands that actually look good.
      Also, for eye makeup, Alima Pure (, all the way. They sadly don’t really do lipstick, but the rest is great.

    • Marcie

      A huge second on clean and green make-up! So much makeup, even lipstick, has some nasty stuff in it. Like lead, which we all know is not good for anyone! The EWG Skin Deep website is a great place to go figure this out and find the greenest products, even within a specific line of cosmetics.

    • For you ladies looking for a ‘clean’ lipstick I have a great recommendation! Elizabeth Street Cosmetics is a line out of San Francisco, and it is what I use on all my brides. It is my personal favorite for daily wear too. And the site has great descriptions of the colors, so hopefully that can be helpful.

      I specialize in safe and natural makeup, so am passionate about this. You can read some articles here for some great info. I love the ‘Toxic Ingredient Glossary” they publish:

      You can also see my favorites lists I am posting on my facebook page, always with a ‘natural’ option, more to come soon:!/media/set/?set=a.343302522359812.80742.237502502939815&type=3

      And for makeup for girls with glasses my biggest tips are stay neutral and define your brows. And check this out:

      Really, I wish I could talk makeup with you guys all day!

  • Liz

    I know you say “all skin tones”, but I want to do a little shout out for gingers, because tutorials seem to lump “redheaded and freckly” in with “fair skinned”, but the coloring (and techinque – foundation over freckles can be a washed-out-looking disaster) is completely different.

    Either way, I’m so looking forward to these tutorials, thank you so much for doing this!!

    • Erin

      YES! And even if you go to one of those ‘do my makeup and show me what to buy’ places, they /so rarely/ know what to do with a redhead. No one seems to know what to do with our coloring. (and people often won’t believe me when I say that no, I will not wear that shade of orange, it will /clash with my hair/).

      • ElisabethJoanne

        Story: 4 years ago (the last time I seriously bought make-up), I went to Sephora and said, “I just started a new job, and I need basically everything.” 6 months ago, we got our engagement photos, and behold! raccoon eyes, but yellow. I ordered prints, took them to Sephora, and said, “I think I still need concealer, but, see the problem?” I think I worked with a manager, and she said, “I can see how someone would select a yellow for you, because you’re very pink, but…”

        She did contouring, which my fiance didn’t like, also, I felt melted in an hour. I had my fiance take pictures of the “ugly” contouring, because Mom’s insisting I have my hair and make-up done professionally for the wedding (which I’m fine with). More, “NOT like this” photos.

        I must be the only bride getting prints of all the photos she DOESN’T like before the wedding.

        • Erin


          That sounds painful. I have googled some tutorials by for-real redheads (the number of dyed redheads confuse the matter these days, because their skin tone is typically quite different, while I’ve found that most ‘real’ redheads tend to have very, very similar coloring) that have been helpful in choosing colors. But still. I have spent most of my life feeling lost with regards to makeup!

          And I think I look really dumb with black eyelashes whatever anyone says.

    • I’m not a ginger (so jealous of all you ladies, seriously), but I am a freckly lady, so I will second a “how to use foundation without losing your freckles” tutorial.

    • SusieQ

      I’m a brunette, not a redhead, but I have rosacea, which makes my face very pink. I sort of look like I’m blushing all the time, and I actually kind of like it, even though makeup people (and a doctor or two!) have told me I should “do something about it”.

      The first couple times I went to a makeup counter, they tried to “neutralize” the pink by adding some yellowish foundation, and I hated the way it looked. On my most recent visit, I said “Look, I know I’m pink, and I like it. I want to still look pink – just nicer – when we’re done,” and to her credit, the MAC lady was able to find something that evened out my skin but still let the natural pinkness show. Maybe she was just really good at her job, but I recommend MAC to everyone now.

  • Class of 1980

    Do the “Cat’s Eye” look that Meg is sporting in the photo. I love that look.

    • Yay! My favorite look! I actually teach workshops just dedicated to the perfect ‘sex kitten’ cat eye. We will try to sneak it in, but if not this round be assured we will show you how!


  • Hi all, Shana here, your makeup girl. I am so excited to see all these comments and suggestions of what people want to know! Hopefully we can cover a lot of the big questions and desires here with these tutorials. I am honored to be part of the APW team for this exciting project and look forward to bringing you solutions for your special day and beyond!
    xo -shana

  • I got married almost 7 years ago but if someone could teach me how to style short hair and do subtle smoky eyes (not the ones that make you look like someone punch you in the face) I would be MOST grateful :)

    • I’m already married too, but am really looking forward to this! Somehow I ended up with less make-up on my wedding day than what I normally wear and my half up/half down hairstyle was the best I could come up with (to not have an up-do, but still keep it out of my face), but the look wasn’t particularly interesting either. I obviously can’t change the past, but you can bet I will put these tips to use in my post-married life! :)

  • Erin

    I’d love to see how to do the side swept low bun and some kick ass ‘do for short haired brides. There never seem to be enough photos of brides who have short hair.

  • Marissa

    How about just taming the frizzies? For all types of hair. My hair always looks great out of the salon, but the instant I wash it, poof, here come the frizzies. What do you guys use? Is it a shampoo rinse? A blow-dry product? WHAT IS THIS MAGIC. (For reference, I have medium-length thick wavy/straight hair; straight on top, wavy on bottom, so that might affect things.)

    Sidenote, I’m SO INCREDIBLY EXCITED about this series. I had already resigned myself to getting things professionally done, which I didn’t really want to do/spend money on. You guys are the best.

    • Erin

      My hair is also huge on the frizz. I wear it both curly and straight, and about 6 years ago my life changed when my hair dresser introduced me to Chi ( . It basically puts oil back in your hair. I put it in wet before blowdrying, and if I still frizz, add a tiiiny bit while it’s dry. It’s expensive, but one of those tiny bottles lasts me well over 6 months. Probably more like 8.

      When curly, my best advice is to not brush your hair. Ever. Couple this with a mousse or gel. But seriously, I spent most my life being told to brush my hair because it was ‘tangly again’, and it wasn’t until I /stopped/ brushing (save for a stroke or two while still wet) that it started looking halfway decent!

      • ElisabethJoanne

        That “Curly Girl” book changed my life. It changed the tiny bit of my life that is how I deal with my Jewish hair, but it changed my life.

        Top take-aways:
        1. Don’t wash your hair. Seriously, warm running water and scalp massage are enough 360 days/year. Use conditioner.
        2. The book doesn’t say this, but I find conditioners with stearyl alcohol, instead of cetyl alcohol, as the #2 ingredient (after water, alas) work much, much better. Treseme, Pantene (Hi Proctoer & Gamble!), and Aussie are the drugstore brands with stearyl alcohol, but it’s right there on the label.
        3. Throw away the hair brush. Seriously, to the confounding of my sisters and fiance (who ask to borrow one), I haven’t owned a hair brush in more than 10 years.

        The advice on getting hair cuts is good, too, but I don’t like paying for a salon with that kind of expertise.

        My public library system has multiple copies.

        • I stopped brushing my hair last fall after I read some curly hair tips. And also started using just conditioner as shampoo. It helps a lot!

        • I swear by the Devachan method, and am fortunate enough to have Deva trained hairstylists in my area. life-c hanging. (But it’s still almost impossible for me to replicate salon result at home. I never brush and never blow dry, and that’s helped IMMENSELY. But I’ve still got a loooooong way to go).

        • Erin

          Yes, this book is GREAT! I’ve never gone all the way to no shampoo (in part because I, horrors, like to straighten my hair about once a week), but I do use very little, and keep heat off it more than once a week.

 is a really great website along the same lines.

          I’d check this stuff out even if you’re thinking ‘oh, my hair isn’t curly, just frizzy’. I was, no lie, /twenty-three years old/ before I realized my hair was actually /curly/ and needed to be treated as such. All my life I’d dealt with mild waves and frizz. It wasn’t until I started treating it right that I realized that I could very easily get beautiful, low-effort curls. A lot of the things we’re trained to do young pull curl out of hair.

          And that barely-curly-wavey-kinda-mussed look is super in right now!

      • Sarah

        Not brushing your hair works for straight hair too! My hair is straight and very fine, and I stopped brushing it about a year and a half ago. Occasionally I will comb it (mostly if the top has a lot of fly-aways) but only if it is dry. Ironically, many people brush their hair because of fly-aways caused by breakage, but brushing your hair is a leading cause of breakage! It’s a vicious cycle…
        I do, however, need to wash my hair because it will get to be an odd color otherwise (it’s a dark blondish color when clean).

  • Ambi

    How to wear red lipstick without looking like a clown.

    How to give fine limp hair volume and hold without looking like a pageant girl.

    How to cover bruises and zits and stuff like that on your body without it looking like you have makeup on your arm.

    How to add hair accessories to different hair styles without looking like a teenager.

    Bangs – what to do with them on your wedding day.

    How to keep from getting makeup on your dress.

    How to fix make-up problems (fake-looking foundation, smudgy eyeliner, lipstick bleed, etc.) if they happen on your wedding day.

    How to deal with the elements – heat, sun, wind, rain, humidity. I’d really love some rescue tactics, something like 5-minute quick fixes if your hair suddenly gets rained on or wind-blown or your makeup all melts off.

    The best products to invest in if you only want to buy a few key items for your wedding day makeup.

    • Zoo

      “How to cover bruises and zits and stuff like that on your body without it looking like you have makeup on your arm.”

      YES. PLEASE. As an avid fencer with a moderate amount of body acne, this would be unspeakably valuable.

    • Lipstick bleed is a good one, and oddly, I only seem to have it when I wear red lipstick. Which makes me feel self-conscious since red is not something I am too used to wearing….

    • LADA

      the bangs question – i wear bangs for so long (almost twenty years) i feel it’s a part of me now, so i plan on wearing it the way i always do

  • How to apply fake eyelashes. I can never seem to handle the glue correctly. And should I use full strips or just the little guys you put on the outsides? Help!

  • Ashley/ Ailee

    SO excited about this and about this partnership! Makes me also think about how cool the job must be for the ones at P&G who handle this kind of stuff… I am also so glad to see the mention of different skin tones. Can we throw in hair styles for kinkier textures? Although I am of mixed heritage, my hair does decidedly not do the whole wavy curl thing featured on the Mixed Chicks bottles.

    I also vote for the retro hairstyles, and how to balance a veil with wanting to show off your hairstyle! On the makeup side, how to keep shine at bay (especially with the summer weddings and sweat), and how to have your makeup last. The whole concept of primers and highlighters totally confuse me, so any mention of that would also knock my socks off!

    Honestly, I’m just so excited about all of these developments in general that I can’t wait to read whatever comes out!

  • Also, CONGRATULATIONS on cutting a good deal! You get to do some awesome photo shoots, get more exposure for APW, offer more tutorials on what your readers want to try, AND you get to invest more into building your business.

    THAT IS AWESOME! Way to work it!

  • Kira

    As someone who just did her own wedding makeup 1 month ago (and watched lots of online tutorials to improve her skills), I would say learning the proper way to lay down some primer, foundation, and concealer is key.
    Those elements were something that were very tricky for me prior and really make a huge overall difference to your entire look on the day.
    I am sure APW already plans to discuss this element of make up, but some extra time spent on choosing appropriate products and actual application would be very helpful.

    • amy

      I’d love some focus on this. I feel like the extras: lipstick, eye makeup, etc… that’s bonus, icing on the cake. But it’s the primer/foundation stuff that really gives you a blank slate to work with, and I don’t know nearly enough about it (especially primer, which I hadn’t even heard of until I started searching for wedding DIY makeup).

    • I love this request! There is a chance we may not get to cover all this in the first round with P&G because I am not 100% sure they produce these items, but lets see what they supply and we will try to work it in.

      In the meantime I do post product recommendations and take questions over on my facebook page,

      Sometimes this is where a pro comes in unless you really are wanting to invest in owning all these products. It is fun stuff to learn about and experiment with, but it does take time and cash.

      I love that you took it on yourself Kira to learn about the proper products and application!


      • Kira

        Shana – Yes…it is definitely a time and money investment. It was something I wanted to learn for my every day life and not just for the wedding day, so it was totally worth while.
        Thanks for posting a link to your product recommendations! I always like new tips. Looking forward to the APW+P&G event!

  • I have extremely long hair that I’m very proud of. I’m trying to find a way to do something fancy with it that still shows off its length (which is at the bottom of my butt). I’m used to doing braids, updos, buns, but I don’t know how to get something that looks really intricate but also shows the length. I would love help with that!

    • Mine hit my waist or slightly below for our wedding. I definitely wanted to show off the length. No sense having all that hair if you’re just going to hide it all in a super heavy up-do on your wedding day.

      I went for as many curls as I could pull off with my super straight hair and then lightly pulled back the sides. The sides ended up falling out (which is what I’d like to know how to prevent) and the curl ended up mostly falling out because of the natural weight of that much hair and the humidity of the day (humidity makes straight hair even straighter). But I’ve heard from several people how beautiful they thought it was to have all my hair just cascading (their word) down my back like that.

      • Erin

        That sounds so beautiful! I also love seeing interesting things done with braids and super long hair (small braids, not huge all-your-hair braids).

        This might seem silly, but what about looking at medievalish or fantasy movies and such for inspiration? They often do really cool stuff with super long hair.

        • Kamille

          I just googled “medieval hairstyles” and a lot of really neat long hairstyles came up!

  • Fenn

    As a photographer of many brides, here is what I would LOVE for someone to show all my fabulous brides : How to do LIGHT makeup WITHOUT heavy foundation. Because, I cannot ever stress enough how much foundation changes the texture of skin and makes brides look less naturally beautiful and more cakey and also makes editing more difficult. Also, this would helped freckled brides who maybe love their freckles.

  • Here’s my deal. I’m not a bride this year, but I still deserve to look hot (because we all do). I’m almost 34 years old and I don’t know how to properly use a bobby pin so that I can trust it to hold my hair up all day long. It seems like I should’ve figured this out a long time ago, but I’m a beyond late bloomer on a lot of fashion things. Can someone please explain the magic of the bobby pin to me?

  • M. Foley

    This is awesome! I’m already lucky enough to be using Shana Astrachan for my wedding next month. She is truly fabulous and I’m so excited that she will get to share all of her magic with APW. On the hair front though, I would love to see some bridal hairstyles with bangs. There is so little out there that doesn’t look dated or costume-y.

    • Yay! I am so excited for your wedding! Thank you for the kind words. Bangs! Yes, hopefully we can cover this too, you know I love bangs.

      xo -shana

  • Sarah

    I’d like to know tips for face makeup that photographs well in full sun (we’re talking SC in August) and will not melt in the heat (it’s 108*F this weekend) during an outdoor wedding. My skin is OK, but it is so pale that red spots show easily. I typically only do tinted moisturizer, but I know that tends to get melty, and it’s really hard to find foundation to match my skin tone. I am planning to do a primer with an SPF as a base, but that’s all I have so far…

  • Shannon

    I’d love to see some tips on maintaining your look throughout the wedding and reception, whether you’ve DIYed it or had it done beforehand. I am having hair and makeup done at a salon before heading to my venue and I’d love to know – do I need to purchase any of their supplies? Can I ask for samples? What should I bring with me to my venue to keep my look going strong for 8+ hours??!! Even if you’re DIYing it – you don’t want to look fab for 30 minutes and then have your hairstyle fall apart and your makeup slide off your face!!

    • Great question! My brides get a little kit from me, and you can easily gather these items to have on hand.
      -blot papers
      -powder (best on a puff, but a brush will do too)
      -lipstick (this is the one thing you should buy if they don’t supply it, to have so you can reapply)
      -bobby pins

      Keep in mind it all goes by so fast you will hardly have a moment to touch up!


  • Lori

    All skin-types and faces? Sold!

    Eye-makeup for the eyelid-crease challenged! Asians of almond/small/brown/non-creased eyes unite!

    Also, since we’re talking P&G here, can I just give a shout-out to CoverGirl Outlast Lip Color? I don’t usually wear makeup, but I needed a strong red color for a dance performance on stage, so I ran out to the nearest drugstore for emergency makeup purchases. From call-time at 6:00pm to final bows at 10:00pm, it never moved, never smudged.

  • A look for those of us with shoulder length curly hair that doesn’t end up being a giant mess by the end of the night.

    Eyebrows, how exactly to fill them in.

    Classy looks (makeup and hair) that can go from daytime to evening for guests of a wedding. I never know what the hell to do without looking ridiculous.

  • Stephanie B

    I was going to ask whats the best product to use on long straight hair that resists curls but then I realized I just cut 6 inches off my hair and there is nothing to actually curl anymore…but it will probably be long by the time I get married so:
    If my hair tends to resist curls but I want to wear them on my wedding day, how can I make it happen? Or should I just go with something that would be easier?

    • Class of 1980

      Embrace the straight? Seriously, I have straight hair that never wanted to curl either. The good side is that naturally straight hair is usually very shiny hair.

      All types of hair have their own beauty. Why not go with it?

      • Christina

        I second the request for what to do with long straight hair that resists curls! I hear what 1980 is saying about the naturally straight– but when since I wear my hair naturally straight every day, it feels too “every day” to wear it like that for my wedding. Plus I love the romantic look of curls. And they don’t even have to be perfect spiral curls– a nice natural looking wave would be my dream look, I’ve never been able to achieve it though, they usually fall pretty quickly. Any tutorials on this would be great!!!

  • wisteria

    Maybe it’s too late to comment… but, in all of the weddings I’ve been in, no stylists have ever known what to do with my short, chin length, thick, very curly hair. Truth be told, neither do I. Any hair advice for those of us with short curly hair who want more options than
    1. Straighten it (boring)
    2. Put 1 million bobby pins in it as is. Seriously, I just paid 75 bucks for someone to put bobby pins in my own un-adultered hair?


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  • ElisabethJoanne

    Random historical trivia: In 16th century England, a down-do indicated a virgin or first-time bride. Catherine of Aragon wore her hair down for both her weddings. I don’t think this actually came up in the annulment proceedings, though.

    Wedding hair, changing the course of history for 500 years now.

    • Isn’t that still reflected in some cultures? There’s a particular religious group in my town and it seems the young women wear their hair down and the married women have theirs much more up and covered. The entire politics and social order conveyed by women’s hair (and who controls how it “should” look) is actually really interesting to me.

      • ElisabethJoanne

        Probably. Among certain Jews, married women still cover their hair, for example.

        As an Anglican, I find it interesting how the “virgin bride” symbols have changed. Henry VIII’s wives wore gold and colors and all but Catherine Parr wore their hair down. Now, “tradition” is hair up, and white.

        Snarky-me can’t wait ’til someone asks me if I’ll be wearing my hair up: “You calling me a wh-re?”

    • Another fun fact: The veil represents long hair (aka virginity). The longer the veil, the chaster the bride. (Which makes no sense. You’re either a virgin or you’re not, right?) Second-time brides aren’t “supposed to” wear veils for this reason.

  • Suzanna

    This is awesome!

    My personal requests:

    For make-up: How do you do “event” make-up? I like my everyday make-up, but what do I need to do to make it look good in photos, and make it last through an event (laughing, crying, eating, sweating, etc.)?

    For hair: Up do’s that feature braids. And down-do’s that feature braids. Also, I have stick-straight and very slick hair that doesn’t want to stay up or in curls or anything. Tips on making do’s last and stay, please.

    Thank you! Looking forward to this!

  • I’d love to see some thought on balancing the look of the head (makeup, hair, veil/fascinator/whatever) with the rest of the ensemble. I had been growing my hair out and really wanted to cut it again to my Spirit Haircut (to steal a great term from up-thread), a pixie. My stylist said that because I was wearing a really big, poofy strapless gown, I would look like a pinhead. I had never thought about the whole look before that moment.

    • Ambi

      Personally, I disagree – I think a pixie cut with a big poufy dress could look really really awesome!

      • Yeah, I’m realizing that now, but I didn’t know enough about my hair/the overall look and balance of an outfit back then to feel confident in cutting it all off. I’d love to see this addressed in the future posts: how to know for yourself (and not just because a professional tells you) what will look good overall.

    • Ambi

      I am imagining Emma Watson in a big poufy ball gown, and it totally works.

    • I agree with the others, this look would be really fabulous! I say you can pull of any look if you have confidence. Well chosen accessories help balance out you look. Hopefully your post inspires others to also go with what they want, not what others say. Your request for ‘knowing your personal style’ is a great one! Sometimes I suggest brides go through their photos and pull the ones of themselves they like the most. It is about YOU, not those professional images you see of stars and models.


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  • Kess

    I know I’m late to the game, but selfishly I’d love learning how to deal with hair that isn’t curly, but isn’t straight, and can probably be called wavy, but mostly is just frizzy. I can’t do straight hair without using a straightener, and while I’ve tried the curly girl method, it doesn’t work for people who only have wavy, not curly hair. (or at least it didn’t work for me)

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  • L

    OK, so I never wear any makeup… Literally, none. I have some powder that I would use on a fancy occasion but only if I have an obvious pimple. But the trick is that our wedding will be outdoors and I am super fair so I have to wear sunscreen. But I don’t want to look all shiny all day. What can I do? What’s a good type of sunscreen and cover-up combo that won’t get streaky or clumpy or make me look like a make-up zombie and that is easy to use and is spf 40+? Also, if I do decide to wear a little bit of something on the day to make me look extra special what is a quick, fool-proof (literally) routine? Like some cover-up and mascara and maybe some light eyebrow pencil (I love my eyebrows so that’s gotta be included. Thanks!

  • Crayfish Kate

    Also a bit late in the game, but I haven’t seen this mentioned yet:

    Eye makeup for ladies with monolids!

    I’m 28, Asian, and have yet to wear any makeup besides lipstick. I have NO IDEA how to use any eye makeup at all, and how-to’s seem to always feature people with creases in their eyelids. I have no crease. Eyeshadow scares me. Eyeliner scares me. Please please please, this would be a wonderful how-to to have! How do I do all this without looking like a clown?

  • Parsley

    Just today I was fruitlessly searching the internet for good ideas and tutorials on what to do with my (longish VERY thick) hair before I put a floral wreath in it. If you could help, I’d be even more grateful to APW than I already am, which is really saying something. (And if not I’ll understand that too!)

  • Molly

    Hello all!

    I scrolled through all the comments to make sure I wasn’t re-posting, and here are some requests that I don’t think have already been exhausted (although love the half-up/half-down enthusiasm!):

    -Fake eyelashes! So this is cheating a bit because it has been mentioned, but I thought it would be the first and loudest request. Love the look, can’t find my way past the glue.

    -Bobby pins – how do I put them in and how many do I need? I have never been able to figure out the v-shaped ones, but whenever I’ve gotten my hair done, the stylists uses about a hundred.

    -Fresh flowers in the hair? I’m thinking maybe a crown type thing or just one pinned behind the ear…any specific types that last longer in hair? Or how would one make a flower crown and then attach it to one’s hair?

    Congratulations on the sponsorship! And thanks for an incredible, incredible website!

    • Molly- My biggest tip for lashes is to let the glue dry for two minutes after you squeeze it out but before you use it. This way it gets tacky and wont slide around. Also buy the the black version. And curl your lashes and put your mascara on first, while the glue is drying. Use the single cluster kind (so much easier to place) or cut your strips into small sections. Let us know how these tips work for you!

      Hopefully we will answer more questions along the way!


    • haha I think I was the original fake eyelashes asker. Apparently girls named Molly really struggle with fake eyelashes.

      Thanks for the tip, Shana!

  • Mallory

    Hair updos/half-updos for stick straight hair, as well as medium length hair.

    I have stick straight hair that won’t hold a curl, even after a can of Big Sexy, and just gets gunked up with product for my trouble. I have never, ever achieved voluminous hair for more than 30 seconds, save my flyaways galore. To top it all off, I have a TON of hair, which makes trying to do anything other than dry and go a challenge for me.

    • Mallory- Hopefully the tutorials will help. I bet we can get some wave in there, if that is what you want. You will need a few different products in your hair, but just the right combo that wont weigh it down. Hot rollers really help too so that the curls can set properly. Sometimes having a pro by your side can be the way to go, so you don’t have to invest in all this stuff, and risk the trial and error.

      I am going to post a link to a half up look, maybe it will help or inspire. Also consider using some dry shampoo to help get some texture to hold.


  • I am going to try to answer a few of your immediate questions here. But bear with me, I am headed into wedding season and busy busy with hair and makeup for my brides. Really I wish I could sit with you all day and talk makeup and hair! Hopefully I can help with some concerns and questions until the posts happen. There are many tricks we pros have, and I’ll do my best to describe how you can get these looks on your own. I understand, I come from a DIY way and love having my own handmade connection to the things that surround me.

    Keep in mind a pro can offer things that you may not have thought of, and that piece of mind of a trusted person by your side the day of. And if you decide to do it all on your own consider a lesson in advance or a shopping trip with a pro, these skills will last long beyond your wedding day!

    xo -shana

  • Two hair helpers:

    I noticed a few requests here for half up / half down styles. So here is the link for a fun and silly recent tutorial I did showing my ’60’s mini bouffant’ – just skip the last step and keep the curls flowing. It’s a bit of a retro look so maybe it isn’t for everyone, but it can be made very classic when you tease a little less and add a bit more curl.

    And for those of you craving volume, here is my DIY Dry Shampoo post. Seriously, this stuff makes a real big difference and is so easy to whip up. Makes a great DIY bridal party gift too!


  • sarah

    So, did procter & gamble sign the sanity pledge?

  • Leslie

    I have very large pores on my nose and parts of my cheeks, and I have never been able to find a foundation or concealer that doesn’t accentuate them and make me look ridiculous. Makeup tips for minimizing, or at least not worsening, large pores would be fabulous!

  • Emily W

    I’m getting married at the end of August and am definitely interested in how to keep my wavy hair from going all frizzy on what I’m afraid will be a hot and humid day. The ceremony site (gorgeous gothic revival church), alas, is not air conditioned and I’m especially concerned about my hair going poofy. Makeup staying tips for such an environment would also be greatly appreciated.

  • My God, I love this site.

  • Oh! How about some tips for blushing brides in the 40+ set?

    I notice that as I get older make up items like concealer bring out lines around my eyes and make me look pancaked and lined instead of pretty. I started experimenting with mixing it with moisturizer first, but I imagine there must be some basic tips that deal with this ‘issue’.

    • Eleanor- Make sure you are using a good eye cream day and night. And consider switching to a creamier concealer. The one from Mineral Fusion is excellent and has two colors for mixing a great color match. Apply with your finger, the warmth will help it blend and smooth to look natural.


  • Gia

    There were some comments here asking thoughtful questions about your decision to partner with P&G given some of their corporate practices that don’t seem to gel with APW’s, and I’m wondering what happened to them and if you’ll provide a response? Given this site’s support of thoughtful dialogue, I hope you’d involve your community of readers and supporters in the discussion! (And I also hope P&G’s financial support doesn’t come with strings attached that stop the thoughtful dialogue this site is so loved for!!)

    • Yes! I’d really like to be able to feel more comfortable with this than I do right now…

  • Charlene

    I have medium length hair, just past my shoulders, and I hate how I look with my hair up. I want to wear it down like I do every day. I usually straighten my hair because it has a funky wave on its own, but I’d like something softer, like good waves for the wedding. But I’m not sure how to do it in a way that looks good. Oh, and my hair is really thick, too.

  • LaurenMcK

    I see it mentioned in various comments, but:

    1) natural blonde hair/fair skin makeup tips
    2) short/medium length hair
    3) how to style hair to last through the humidity of a summer’s day/night
    4) sunscreen tips for fair skinned brides/maids
    5) pre-wedding beauty regimen (deep conditioning treatments? facials? etc)

  • I am looking forward to this because I feel like such a fish out of water (e.g., how do I find someone to wax my eyebrows? Is my sister right that it’s something I “need” for the wedding? and speaking of waxing, should I also wax Down.There for the honeymoon or is that so WIC that somebody will take away my feminist card?). I have never been a real girly-girl and I know next-to-nothing about beauty products/techniques.

    But even more than the *technical* articles, I’d love a discussion on the *emotional/philosophical* aspects of hair and make-up. Ever since I was a little girl, on big important days (including, but not limited to, science fairs and academic competitions), I have channeled all of my emotional energy into berating my hair for being too frizzy, my skin for being too freckly, my teeth for being too yellow, my eyes for being too red, my boobs for being too small, and on and on. All of the pent-up emotional stress comes out in self-body-shaming. On a normal day? No body image issues. On a day when I’m stressed out? Hell, yes.
    (And you can add to that the fact that my stressed self does break out in acne and my stressed hair does get legitimately frizzier!).

    So that’s my Big Worry for the Big Day. How do I control the anxiety? And how do I prevent the general anxiety from being focused on one particular aspect of the wedding (i.e., How I Look)?

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  • hampton

    i am a little late to the party so I hope that this is not a repeat request – i looked through the comments and didn’t see it mentioned… but i am curious as to how exactly you are supposed to style your hair in a way to where you don’t totally f*ck it up if you take your veil off after the ceremony. i am leaning toward a birdcage veil but may end up going with some sort of veil/fascinator hybrid (i don’t know if that exists outside of my brain, but i feel like it should)… but i do want the option of taking the damn thing off at some point without having to spend 15 minutes restyling.

    and i know this *has* been mentioned, but i second the cries for advice for puffy under eye bags.

    looking forward to learning some new tricks!