Destination Wedding Hair & Makeup Tips

I loved everything about my big day but I must say that if I could go back in time, the one thing that I would do differently is my wedding makeup. Don’t worry, this isn’t going to be a negative Nancy post, I just wanted to share my top tips on wedding makeup in case they help some of you before your big day.

Are you planning a wedding abroad? I found planning my destination wedding quite straight forward but that’s mostly due to my amazing wedding planner. I got married in Crete and wouldn’t change it for the world. The location, the venue, flowers, don’t get me started on the divine food! It was all just incredible. Here are my tips and advice for the big wedding day build up:

Take Care of Your Skin

I started my skincare journey with the lovely team at Dermalogica and I can honestly say that it did wonders for my skin during the build up to my big day. Read all about my skincare tips right here! I would definitely recommend starting your skincare routine 3-6 months before your wedding day. It not only helps your skin achieve that beautiful glow, but it also helps with how your makeup looks on the day. Eating healthy and drinking lots of water is also going to help to give you that glow when you need it most.

Always Have a Trial

If I was getting married at home, I would have had my trial 3-5 weeks before my wedding or even sooner but it’s a little difficult if you’re planning on getting married abroad. I went to visit my venue the year before and I did have a makeup trial whilst I was out there. To be completely honest, I thought she applied way too much makeup but looking back, I wish I would have booked her for my wedding day because the makeup artist I ended up having (well let’s just put it this way) was not the best!

I unfortunately didn’t have time to have a hair trial whilst I was out there so I had to hope that the person that I did book was going to do a great job. I did have both a makeup and hair trial a few days before the wedding and although I wasn’t best pleased with either, I was confident it was all going to be OK on the day. I would definitely recommend taking lots of photos and ideas with you and make sure you stick with what you want and don’t let the makeup artists and hairdressers change your mind. If you’re not happy with your trial, make sure you voice this and ask for another one. At the end of the day this is your big day and you are paying for this service. This is something that I wish I had done.

Consider LVL or Individual Lashes

I don’t think a lot of brides had considered LVL or individual lashes before because I hadn’t. If you’re wanting more of a natural look instead of having the full strip lashes then I can highly recommend this. I went for LVL lashes before I flew to Greece, which is your natural lashes that are tinted and a length-volume-lifted and I loved them so much. I haven’t tried individual lashes before but I have seen so many people wear them and they always look so natural.

Don’t Wear SPF

I can’t stress this enough! If you do have any form of flash photography, the flash will literally bounce off the skin making you look washed out. My makeup artist tried to apply an SPF lotion and then an SPF foundation which really worried me. I stressed this to her and she assured me that she wouldn’t use any SPF on the day. Many foundations contain SPF, always check this! My advice would be to purchase one before you head to your destination as a back up plan, this way you will be able to get the correct match for your skin tone. My recommendation would be Dior or Giorgio Armani.

Do Your Own Makeup & Hair

Don’t be scared if you’re thinking of doing your own makeup and hair. I had been toying with this idea for a year and really wish I would have stuck to my guns but I wanted to be pampered – like every bride does I guess. To be honest, I could have done the job just as good or even better and saved a lot of money in the long run. Ask a bridesmaid if she can help you with this and you can always go for trials at makeup counters and buy the exact products they used. They can also show you how to apply everything if you’re unsure (why oh why, did I not do this). The same goes for your hair, I literally just wanted boho waves which realistically I could have done myself but if you’re wanting something a little more technical then I maybe would advise a hairdresser.

All in all, don’t stress too much! Everyone will think you look stunning and the most important person that you will be impressing will be standing at the end of the aisle waiting for you. I spent too much time thinking about my hair and makeup on the morning of my big day, but as soon as I saw my husband-to-be, I knew that the only thing that really mattered was us getting married.


I hope this helps and if you have any tips that I might not have covered, please leave them below so we can give our feedback to upcoming brides.



  1. 09/10/2019 / 11:56 am

    These are great tips!! Sorry to hear you weren’t pleased with your hair and make up artists but you look gorgeous and no one would know if you hadn’t said/wrote this post! I’m excited to share my wedding tips and have a skincare /beauty post coming soon too! Xx

    • doorwaysanddresses
      09/10/2019 / 12:02 pm

      Thanks so much 🙂 It was a stressful morning but definitely didn’t ruin my day. I had the best day and luckily I had taken so many makeup products with me so I fixed it pretty well afterwards. I can’t wait to read your posts xxx

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