As a beauty writer, I think it’s safe to say I spent more time thinking about my wedding makeup than the average bride. I had a good sense as to what I wanted going in, but I also never before had to plan for a makeup look that would last upwards of 12 hours and be photographed hundreds of times from all angles; not to mention the sweat, tears, and other inevitable threats to the structural integrity of my makeup.
For the big day, I enlisted the help of my friend and amazingly talented makeup artist Kristyl Newell, whom I would trust with my face again and again. With her technical skill and my obsessive knowledge of brands and products, we were able to create a look that made me feel like the most glamorous human on Earth — but still very much like myself. To kick off the process, I sent her some inspiration photos that I’d been collecting, including Ariana Grande’s stunning matte wedding makeup. I told her that I wanted more glowiness than Grande had, but the overall vibe was on point: soft and romantic with a bit of smokiness around the eyes and a neutral lip.
A couple of months before the wedding, we met for a makeup trial to run through the look we had planned. I brought her some of my products I thought could work and we played around until we got it just right. We were even able to include some of my holy grail products (like the e.l.f. Hydrating Camo Concealer and the Benefit Hula Bronzer) and I suggested my most favorite lip combo of all time, which Newell immediately agreed was quintessentially bridal due to the soft rosy hue (more on that dynamic duo below).
“Ultimately, we created the look together, which is every makeup artist's dream,” Newell says of our collaboration. “I wanted Catherine to be a part of the process and had her look in the mirror as I was building the look to make sure she was comfortable at each step and making adjustments to reach her ultimate vision.”
As for Newell’s advice for other brides-to-be, she suggests bringing your makeup artist pictures of what you like and being willing to talk things through. “Be open to the makeup artist's creativity but know what makeup look makes you feel most confident,” she says. “This is your day and our goal is to make you feel like the most beautiful, glamorous version of yourself. I always tell my brides to be honest; I want to know if you don’t love something because it’s makeup — anything can be tweaked!
As I mentioned before, for my lips, I went with the familiar, opting for my go-to pairing of Alamar Cosmetics Lip Liner in Dulce to line and slightly fill in, topped off with Lauren Conrad Beauty The Lipstick in Shell. It’s the absolute perfect combination of rosy pink and brown, and while the lipstick is matte, it’s so velvety and never drying. Even more impressive, it lasted all day and night, even after several courses of food, many kisses with my new husband, and of course, a whole lot of sweating. Newell offered to touch up my makeup after the ceremony but I really didn’t need it; instead, I added a bit more lipstick myself as it had faded a tiny bit. Unfortunately, the Lauren Conrad Beauty website is undergoing construction for a reveal in 2022, so the lipstick I used is not available for purchase at the moment. Hopefully, it’ll be back soon, but you can always rely on the trusty Charlotte Tilbury Matte Revolution Lipstick in Pillow Talk as a substitution.
All in all, my wedding makeup was everything I could have hoped for, glamorous, natural, and low-maintenance. Ahead, I’ve listed every single makeup product that Newell used on my wedding day, in the hopes that it can be useful to any other brides-to-be — or really, anyone who’s looking for a go-to soft glam look.
We only include products that have been independently selected by TZR’s editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.