Monday, 19 October 2015

Questions to ask your Wedding Vendors before hiring them Part 2 (Makeup Artist)

The person you choose to provide your makeup services on the day of your wedding will likely be spending several hours with you and your bridal party. So it is important that you trust and like him or her.

Here is a list of questions that you should ask most of, if not all, based on your needs and circumstances, to ensure you’re hiring a professional who will provide the level of services you deserve on Your Day.

1) How do I book you for my wedding date? Do you require a deposit? What about a contract?

Understand what the artist requires to secure your date on her book. Sometimes the deposit will be nominal, but most will require 25 – 50% of the total package of services. And be sure to get it all in writing, with receipts for each payment. There should also be provisions made for unusual or unforeseen events like cancellation of the contract or illness on the wedding day. This gives you legal recourse to recover your funds if the artist does not provide the services as agreed.

2) Will it be YOU at my wedding or another artist? What happens if you can’t make it on my day?

The artist who does your Trial Run or Preview Session should be the artist who does your makeup on your wedding day. This is the person you’ve discussed the details of your wishes and developed a report with. Some larger studios and salons will not give you that promise, so be sure to ask. Also ask what happens if that artist is unable to come on your wedding day.  

3) How many weddings have you done? Do you normally work with brides?

Just as in any profession, makeup artists can “specialize” in any number of areas. Those who work with brides exclusively will understand their needs better than an artist who works with runway models or for print advertising.

4) What is your background?  Where did you learn to apply makeup?

I do not believe that this is the most important question to ask, it should still be asked. After all, there are incredibly talented artists who have never set foot in a classroom! The artist’s portfolio or most recent work should weigh more heavily in your decision. But the answer to this question may give you insight into who this person is and whether you’ll “click” with them.

5) May I see your portfolio?

Her portfolio will give you a good indication of her versatility and style. Are all the faces made up the same way, or has she brought out the best in each face?

6) Do you have a website or blog?

This is a good indication of the artist’s level of professionalism and dedication to her career. You will probably gain your first impression of the artist from online media, and so it should be informative, complete and current. Any artist with photos of work she did in the 19th century on her site is not the artist you want on your wedding day.

7) May I call a few references?

This is probably the most forgotten or skipped step in hiring any wedding professional, not just makeup artists.  But hearing feedback from previous bridal clients ensures this artist is working regularly in the bridal field.

8) What do you charge?

This shouldn’t be the only criteria you look at before hiring an artist, it must be considered, of course! Ask about packages that fit the size of your bridal party or if there’s a price discount with a certain size group. Also ask what’s included in that rate, such as products for touch-ups or if she stays through the ceremony.

9) What size of bridal party do you accommodate? How long will it take to get makeup for my bridal party of <fill in the blank>?

If you have a large bridal party, this will be a very important question to ask. If you ceremony is at 11:00 AM and you have 8 bridesmaids, be prepared to be out of bed early that day. Most artists will need a minimum of 30 minutes with each bridesmaid, to as much as an hour with the bride. Make sure you carefully plan enough time on the wedding day so that preparations are not rushed.

10) Can you duplicate a makeup look from pictures in a magazine?

Not all artists are comfortable working from a picture, while others may insist you provide one. Just be sure the picture you choose is of a woman with similar bone structure and skin tone as yourself. Eye makeup styles that look great on large, almond-shaped eyes like Jackie Appiah’s will not look the same on smaller, round eyes like Genevieve.

11) What methods of payment do you accept?

Make sure that you have the funds available for her preferred payment method and get a receipt for every installment.

12) What kinds/brands of products do you use? Is this makeup good for pictures or photography?

You may not recognize the name brands used by pro artists, and that’s OK. What you’re really looking for is to exclude any artists who use one specific brand exclusively. As a professional who has used many, many brands, I can assure you that no single company does everything “right” for every person or situation. Select an artist who can change products to fit your needs and your skin.

13) How do I keep my makeup fresh for the whole day? How will the product wear? What about color-matched products to touch up with?

This is another area where choice of products is so important, and having an artist that can tailor those products to fit your needs and skin.  Professional products will stay fresh looking for many hours longer than most consumer-grade products. Many artists will also provide products for touch-ups at her cost or include it in her services.

14) I have skin allergies or severe acne. Can you work with me? Do you airbrush? Can you contour my face? How about covering blemishes or my tattoo? Do you apply false lashes? Do you do wedding hair?

Based on your particular needs, you may want to ask some or all of these questions and I’ve listed them here as a group.

15) Do you charge a travel or location fee? How far do you travel? What other travel-related expenses will I need to cover? What will be the total cost of the services I want?  

Many artists will offer to travel to your wedding location for your wedding day, you need to ask what the extra fee will cost but for your trial run, you may be required to travel to their studio or salon.

16) What happens at the Trial Run or Preview Session? Do I come to you for this appointment? How much is the Trial or is it included in your services? How long will the Trial Run take? What is included in the Trial Run?

The Trial Run or Preview Session is so important to ensure that the makeup your artist provides on Your Day is everything that you want.  It’s a good idea to take a camera with you to preserve the look she creates for you.

17) On my wedding day, do I come to you, or do you travel to my venue (or where I’m getting dressed)?

18) Do you sell cosmetic products? Will my bridal party hear a sales pitch on my wedding day?

Is she an artist or a sales person? On your wedding day, do you really want to hear a sales pitch, or have your bridal party surprised by one? In my opinion, that’s not only unprofessional, but also rude.

19) How many events will you work on my wedding day?

This is often an overlooked, yet crucial, question to ask before booking. If preparations on The Day don’t go quite as planned and run late, you need to know that your makeup artist will not be leaving before all the bridesmaids are done, just because she has another wedding that day. You also want to ensure you won’t be the third bridal party she’s worked for that day and arriving at your venue with dirty equipment and physically tired. Keep in mind, though, that an artist who works this way may also have a minimum booking requirement, especially on weekends or for in-demand dates.

I hope you find these tips useful.  Good luck!


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