9 Brides Share How Much They Spent On Their Wedding Hair & Makeup

aimee simeon

Once your partner pops the question, wedding planning kicks into full gear — and that involves a lot of choices. There's the venue, the menu, and the DJ to decide on, and each detail will determine the mood of your big day. Another crucial choice that can't be overlooked: your bridal glam.

How your hair and makeup look as you walk down the aisle is just as important as the dress you'll be wearing. However, how much you decide to spend on your beauty look is a completely personal decision. Some brides choose to allocate significant funds to their hair and makeup, going full-out on the glam. Others reserve a smaller budget for their style, saving those extra funds for other line items, like the cake.

No matter the route you take, finding a hair and makeup look that works for your style and budget is important. So, we asked nine brides to share exactly how much cash they dished out for their wedding-day hair and makeup. Read on for their tried-and-true advice on choosing the perfect glam squad for your big day.

Charlene McCraney

Location: Dallas, TX

Cost of Hair: $750

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I wanted my hair and overall look to feel like I was floating on a cloud all day long. Ultimately, nothing too structured. As a result, I went with soft flowing curls and added natural-textured clip-ins for length. I wanted something I could easily wear all day and still look good through photos, dancing, etc."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"My decision was easy. One of my best college girlfriends, Marissa Robinson, is a professional hairstylist. She always told me she would style my hair whenever my big day came."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"The best thing I did was try on my dress with different hairstyles and take photos. I was set on wearing my hair pulled back until I saw how it photographed. Then, I tried my dress on with my hair down, and I fell in love. I would recommend seeing different styles to be 100% sure that you love the entire look from head to toe."

Photo by Cristy Angulo Photography.

Cost of Makeup: $250

What makeup style were you looking for?

"Looking like myself was important to me. I didn't want makeup that made me look like a totally different person once I left the chair. My inspiration was a natural glam that would appear effortless in photos. My husband also likes when I'm makeup-free, so I really wanted him to love the makeup, too. Lashes, however, were a must. Those are non-negotiable."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"I stalked Instagram until I found the right person. My makeup artist showed a lot of her bridal work on her Instagram page and all of the brides looked natural, but still had makeup application that enhanced their features."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"A bridal makeup trail is a must. Also, choose someone who specializes in wedding-day, long-wear makeup. You need your face to last for hours, so going with someone who is aware of that makes a huge difference."

Photo by Cristy Angulo Photography.

Brinton Parker Botkin

Location: San Franciso, CA

Cost: $650, includes hair and makeup

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I've never been great about doing my hair because it's so thick. I didn't have much in mind except that I wanted it out of my face, but still flowing down my back, and I hoped to incorporate a braid somehow. My hairstylist created this gorgeous fishtail braid using three big braids and curled the rest. It had the laid-back look I'd hoped for, but somehow still contained about a million bobby pins."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"I didn't realize until I began the search how difficult it is to find an affordable wedding stylist with a diverse range of clients in their portfolio. My maid of honor has gorgeous natural curls, and I wanted to ensure that whoever I hired was experienced styling Black hair. I've been on many shoots where hairstylists made Black models feel like an afterthought, and I didn't want that happening to somebody I love on my wedding day. I found my stylist after reaching out to several and asking to view their portfolios. I was delighted by her range of experience — I knew she could make all of the women in my bridal party feel gorgeous."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"Things got so crazy the month of my wedding that I didn't think to refresh my hair color. While I love how it ended up looking, I wish I'd have gotten a fresh gloss or something. So if you can, squeeze in a last-minute color appointment. Also, find a style that allows you to dance like crazy at the reception, even if it means taking out a million pins at the end of the night."

Photo by Feather + North.

What makeup style were you looking for?

"As soon as I saw Lily Collins at the 2017 Critics' Choice Awards, I knew that I wanted to try replicating her look. I believe my exact description to my artist was 'ethereal vampire princess.' Some people go soft and natural for their wedding day, but that's never been me. I wanted a dark lip, dark eyes, and a highlight that you could see from space."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"Similarly to my hairstylist struggles, it was surprisingly hard to find a makeup artist with a range of skin tones in their portfolio. Because my bridesmaids are all women of color, I wanted to find an artist who was equipped them feel like their most stunning selves. When I found my hair and makeup duo, they showed me their incredibly diverse portfolio and quickly put my mind at ease."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"I love everything about how my wedding look turned out and wouldn't change a thing, but my advice for other brides is: EAT. I inhaled a massive sandwich while I got my hair done, then wore a liquid lipstick that wouldn't budge throughout the wedding day, so that I could eat (and kiss!) whenever I got a chance. It's such a crazy day that it's hard to find time for sustenance, so take advantage whenever you can. Also, test-drive your lipstick before the wedding to make sure it will hold up."

Myasia Owens

Location: Scranton, PA

Cost of Hair: $1800, includes extensions and styling for the bridal party

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I was looking for a vintage, relaxed look for my wedding day. I was torn between an updo or wearing my hair down. I went with the latter after I tried on my dress."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"My wedding stylist, Koni, has been doing my hair for years. Her work is amazing, so I decided to trust her for my wedding day."

Photo by Sammie Shea Photographer.

Cost of Makeup: $1000, includes bride and bridal party

What makeup style were you looking for?

"I wanted a classic cat-eye to complement my hair, but I wanted my foundation and base to look very natural."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"The person I chose was a good friend of mine who never disappoints me when it comes to makeup."

Any advice for other brides?

"This is the person responsible for making you look and feel beautiful, so finding someone you trust is crucial. Be comfortable with your beauty choices and go with your gut with planning everything out."

Photo by Sammie Shea Photographer.

Zuma Rahman

Location: Long Island, NY

Cost: $600, includes hair and makeup

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"In my culture, we have several different events. The 'I do' ceremony is split up into two parts, and then the reception is split up into three parts. For my 'I do' ceremony, I wanted a lot of volume. It was important that my hair could hold up my heavy veil."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"I used Instagram to find local hair and makeup artists. The person I ended up going with was also on Instagram, but I heard great reviews about her work through family and friends. She's located in Dallas, where my husband is from, so I had to fly her to New York for the events."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"Looking back, I would have gone with looser, more natural-looking hair. But above all, do your research and have pictures of what you want ready for a trial. After your hair and makeup trial, I also recommend scheduling a photoshoot with your partner while you're dolled up."

Photo by Faisal Chowdhury.

What makeup style were you looking for?

"I don't wear much makeup, but I knew I wanted dramatic lashes with a subtle lip color."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"I used the same artist who did my hair for makeup as well."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"Bring your own foundation if you can, or give your favorite brand and shade to your artist beforehand to make sure that your base is covered. Also ask your artist what lip color he or she will be using beforehand, so you can purchase your own to reapply during your event."

Photo by Faisal Chowdhury.

Orrisha Denbow-Burke

Location: Toronto, Canada

Cost of Hair: $60

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I wanted a simple updo that didn't require too much gel or holding spray. I didn't want that stiff feeling, especially if I needed to keep the same style all day. Princess Diana has always been my bride inspiration, so I wanted to go with something unique to me, but simple and timeless like her."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"I initially struggled to find a hairstylist. I usually do my own hair, so I felt out of the loop in the professional scene. But after asking around, I found someone who was able to style my hair and stay within my budget."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"Less is more, you don't always need an extravagant hairstyle to feel beautiful on your big day."

Photo By Chester Simeon Photography.

Cost of Makeup: $100

What makeup style were you looking for?

"For makeup, I wanted to keep my skin really glowy and classic. I don't usually wear eyeshadow, but because it was a special moment, I didn't mind playing up my eyes."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"My maid of honor recommended my makeup artist, who also happened to be one of my former classmates. We did a complimentary trial, and I was very satisfied with her work."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"Make sure to do your research on what makeup you want for your day, so you can show your artist exactly what you want. The last thing you want is for the makeup artist to go in blind and you end up dissatisfied on your wedding day. Communication is key to get a result you love within your budget."

Photo By Chester Simeon Photography.

Cristina Burns

Location: Bel Air, MD

Cost of Hair: $80

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I wanted to leave my hair down because I felt like updos are so common, and I didn't love the look of my shoulders being completely bare. I went for long, classic, Old Hollywood waves."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"Originally, I struggled finding someone who wouldn't charge over my budget, which was $100 (not including tip). I also needed someone who could do some of my bridal party, but be okay with not all of my bridesmaids getting their hair done. Many artists have minimum party requirements, but my goal for the wedding was to be considerate of my bridal party when it came to cost. I went with a friend of mine, who was happy to accommodate my needs."

Photo by Abby Melrose Photography.

Cost of Makeup: $50

What makeup style were you looking for?

"I love Ariana Grande, so all of my wedding makeup inspiration came from her. I wanted brown tones on my eyes, slight contouring, and a subtle tan look."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"I took a referral from my hairstylist."

Any advice for other brides?

"Don’t go into debt and spend newlywed life arguing about bills. However, if it’s affordable, do a hair and makeup trial. Otherwise, do whatever makes you feel beautiful."

Photo by Abby Melrose Photography.

Tisha Chase

Location: New York, NY

Cost of Hair: $80

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I didn't have an exact inspiration, I just knew I wanted something as fresh and easy as possible that didn't take too much attention away from my dress."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"I was a bad bride and left this as one of the last things on my to-do list. I was putting this off because the thought of an updo or tight curls pinned to my head made me nauseous. I went to DryBar the week of my wedding and ended up meeting my stylist there. We clicked and I asked if she was free to style me for my wedding. Luckily, she was, and we went with loose curls with no hairspray."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"You're going to sweat it out, so don't go beyond your budget. You are marrying (hopefully) the love of your life, and your hair doesn't really matter."

Photo by Glenmar Studio.

Cost of Makeup: $200

What makeup style were you looking for?

"I was looking for a no-makeup makeup look. I loved Kim Kardashian's wedding look and took dress and makeup inspiration from her."

How did you pick your makeup artist?

"I have a good friend in the makeup industry who worked with a talented artist. She did my makeup once before, and I hired her for my wedding day. It was so easy, and she came prepared with everything."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"Get lash extensions! And, if your makeup artist is a good one, she'll give you the lipstick she used on you. Give it to your best friend and she will make sure you are applying it throughout the night."

Photo by Glenmar Studio.

Phylicia Okpo

Location: Brooklyn, NY

Cost of Hair: $450

What hairstyle were you looking for?

"I was going for a clean, Old Hollywood glam, which I felt was appropriate to pair with my long-sleeve dress. I searched for different styles and inspiration on Pinterest."

How did you pick your hairstylist?

"One of my coworkers is a great hairstylist. We share a bond at work, and we both wanted to work with each other on my big day."

Any hair advice for other brides?

"Your look is everything on your wedding day, and I believe you should be wearing a hairstyle you love. I would advise all brides to do a trial beforehand, so you get an idea of how your hair will actually look. Don't just commit to a stylist because it looks like they do good work. Ask all the questions you have and make sure to get a quote, so you can budget accordingly. If the cost of hair is slightly out of your original budget, then maybe you can adjust elsewhere. However, be sure you set limits to avoid things getting out of hand."

Photo by Hak Weddings.

Cost of Makeup: $100

What makeup style were you looking for?

"I was going for a clean, fresh look. I wanted to look flawless, but my main objective was to still look like me. I did a lot of Google searching for makeup I liked. Some celebrities that came up in my search were Alicia Keys, Ariana Grande, and Evelyn Lozada."

How did you pick your makeup artist?
"A friend of my husband's recommended a makeup artist. I did a trial with her, and she knew exactly what I was going for. Her prices were also reasonable, in my opinion, so I decided to stick with her."

Any makeup advice for other brides?

"During my trial, my artist created a look that wasn't exactly what I wanted, so I made sure to vocalize that. She changed it based on my feedback and was able to achieve what I wanted. Don't be afraid to speak up if you know what you want. If you don't know what you want, that leaves the door open for other people to decide for you and, ultimately, for you to be unhappy. Do your research for makeup looks you like, and find an artist that cares about your desires and collaborates with you to achieve what you want."

Photo by Hak Weddings.

Jessica Oliveira-Haddad

Location: New York, NY

Cost of Hair: $150

What hairstyle were you looking for?

“I was looking for a low, curly bun since my hair is naturally straight. When I was looking through Kitty Chen's dress designs, I came across this beautiful model with her hair in a bun. I remember saving that picture and saying, ‘This is what I want’.”

How did you pick your hairstylist?

“I did a lot of research on hashtags. I went to my wedding venue hashtag and looked at what other people were posting. I ended up finding someone within budget and reached out to her.”

Photo by Photos By William.

Cost of Makeup: $250

What makeup style were you looking for?

“I did not want to go for the natural look. I wanted something dramatic, so I went with a smoky eye with bold highlight on my cheeks.”

How did you pick your makeup artist?

“My makeup artist is my sorority sister, and she did my birthday makeup in the past. I knew she was who I wanted to hire for my wedding day.”

Any advice for other brides?

“Browse through Pinterest and Instagram to find exactly what you want, and definitely get a trial. Also, don't be afraid to let your makeup artist know if you don’t like your makeup."

Photo by Photos By William.

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