Hiring a Pro Makeup Artist for your Wedding - Why it's important.

Every year during the busy season - which is March through August, I will get at least 100 inquiries. Maybe booking only 30 of them, but that is how it goes. We hear alot of "Sorry you are out of my price range" or just get ghosted. Not uncommon for us. 

Something has been happening a lot lately and I feel like I needed to write a blog about it. We are seeing a trend of brides only valuing one aspect of their wedding day or maybe two. Like, paying for an expensive photographer and coordinator but skimping on the hair and makeup. 

First, lets talk about why you should hire a makeup artist and pay good money for them to style you and your wedding party. 

1. You have hired a photographer - most likely paying quite a bit of money to have them for around 6-10 hours, documenting your day. You should look (and feel) amazing, have makeup that lasts through all the crying, toasts, hugging, dancing and partying! And if you are getting married in Seattle during the spring/'d better count on rain! 

Another thing to consider is that as professionals, we carry many variations of makeup for a variety of skin types. We are trained to know what products are compatible with your face and  what products will work together to make you glow all day and night. Most importantly, we are trained to know what is going to photograph well. If you have invested money in your photography, you should definitely make sure you look stellar in those photos.

2. Wedding days are stressful.
Let us help you relax. Seriously, I will FORCE you to sit down and relax! Who doesn't want one less thing to think about on their wedding day? 11 years ago, before I was a makeup artist, I went to the MAC counter. Walking through Bellevue Square with a flannel, veil and my Hair + Makeup done felt super bizarre. Not to mention, I had to drive there and back. Definitely not ideal. 

Priority - We work around your photographers' timeline. I make sure my brides have at least a half an hour between the time we wrap hair and makeup & getting the dress on. You can call us your time management/ beauty bad asses if you want! (That IS technically what we are....).
Your artist should ALWAYS have a timeline prepared before hand. Keeping on schedule is key to getting the most bang for your buck and a smooth start to your very special day. 

3. We are professional. 
We will not only show up, but we will be on time - and this....this is another big thing I stress to brides. Make sure your makeup artist has a good reputation. Ask your wedding planner about artists, search their instagram feeds, watch their stories, do your research.
Don't be afraid to ask questions about sanitation, products and how they approach their work.  

Final thoughts: While some artists maybe cheaper; I will say from all the recent frantic calls I have received  because their makeup artist "Cancelled last minute", you get what you pay for. I would much rather pay a professional a bit more money and rest easy knowing I don't have to worry about whether or not they are going to show up. Your wedding day should be magical, we play a HUGE part in making sure it goes as planned.

Elopement in the PNW Penninsula
Photo: Megan Montavalo Photography
Hair and Makeup: Kat St. John


Winter Elopement

Some people wonder if we do elopements, the answer is YES! Not everything has to be a huge wedding or event. While that is most of our "bread and butter", there is something more fulfilling when doing a small party, or a "Bride Only" job. It feels nice to switch things up.

Two things about this particular elopement: 
1. It was my first elopement so I was VERY excited to see what an elopement was like! Weddings are based around your photographer's timeline, and so are elopements....however, this was so much more laid back. So relaxed, I was almost scared I was missing something. 

2. We didn't have a trial run together. This was also something foreign to me! Kind of like a Bridal Blind Date.....I have to say, it was kind of exciting to see what we would come up with.  

When I arrived, the bride met me out front of the cutest Bed and Breakfast, we quickly made it up to her suite where they were getting ready. It was just Me, the Bride and her Mom.

Since we had a relaxed timeline, most of it was spent time chatting, talking about everything and just enjoying the presence of people and authentic emotion. No Phones, no TV, just human interaction. I sure do hope Eloping is in for a while. This was such a joy to do. 

Photos: Toni Christine | TCP

Friendor Love - Entwined Weddings

You may have read the previous post about my new studio space and how excited I was to start working out of it. Since the beginning of march the space has been buzzing with shoots, makeup artist meet-ups, collaborations and trial runs! 

About a month ago I met with Christine in the studio to do some makeup and a quick shoot. We chatted about weddings, the industry. All the fun stuff! Most people don't know this but, as makeup artists, our timelines for brides are set based on the photographer's schedule for the day. Our responsibility is to make sure you are ready, out the door and to your first look right on time. Since we work closely together, it is nice to meet outside of work to chat and just get to know each other in a more relaxed environment.

Christine is a Wedding photographer, her company is called "Entwined Weddings". You can check out here work here

First, it was a casual session with a headshot, and then the dresses and skirts came out (she brought a killer wardrobe) So I thought, "Hm, lets give this woman a french/ chic updo to go with her natural makeup". The shoot just kind of blossomed into something almost Parisian with her stunning features, and cute striped top! <3

It was great getting to know Christine a bit more while doing her hair and makeup! Always a great time chatting people up while we make them pretty!

For makeup information and links, go to the bottom of the blog. 

Images Courtesy of St. John | Lifestyle & Portraits

Eye Makeup: 
Laura Mercier: Eye Basics - Buff
Mac cosmetics: Saddle, Nylon  
Eyeliner: Inglot Gel Liner #90
Mascara: L'Oreal Voluminous Waterproof

Face Makeup:
Embryolisse - Creme Au Lait Primer/ Base
Temptu: S/B foundation - Sand
NARS Cosmetics: Hot Sand - Illuminator
NARS Cosmetics: Laguna - Bronzer
NARS Cosmetics: Deep Throat - blush
Laura Mercier: Translucent Loose Setting Powder

Mac Cosmetics: "Twig"

Plummy Neutrals

This post is waaaaaay overdue! The beginning of this month I decided to rent a space in Seattle, Shooting everyday/ everything that I could and then bridal season snuck up on me!

Mackenzie is a friend of mine who happens to be a beautiful model with perfect skin. She was one of the first shoots in my new space and I hadn't seen her in a few years. We had a lot to talk about! We met when she was just 17 years old, and here she sits in front of me at 23. WHAT HAPPENED TO THE TIME? 

This shoot was for me to to try out some new techniques, use some new product, test out my fabulous new studio and just hang out. These sessions are always important as a working creative. While we have a stellar job that involves making people feel and look gorgeous, we don't get too much creative freedom to play with color. Mackenzie and I have done some CRAZY makeup in the past, so this shoot I really wanted to focus on softening her look and showcasing the beautiful woman that she has become. 

All product information below photos. 

Photos: St. John | Lifestyle & Portraits

I quickly curled the hair with a 1 1/2 tapered wand. 
Temptu S/B Airbrush Foundation
Kevyn Aucion Highlighter - Candlelight
Mac Cosmetics Blush - Dolly Pop
NARS Bronzer - Laguna
Bobbi Brown BBU palette for color correction
Bobbie Brown Gel Liner - Black Ink
Laura Mercier Eye Basics - Buff
Mac Cosmetics Eyeshadow - Beauty Marked + Saddle in the crease
Monda Lashes - D Wispy
Anastasia Brow Powder Duo - Soft Brown

Vintage Inspiration: The 60's

During the slower months leading up to a crazy wedding season, I always take advantage of my free time to do some creative and different projects. During the Summer (I don't know about other freelance artists) I lose track of my social life, particularly with my 9-5 friends. This is a way for me to hang out with my friends, while flexing a little bit of creative muscle..

The model for this look - Emilie, is a good friend of mine & collaborator. She has always been so gracious in lending me her face to do fun makeup looks. Not to mention, she ALWAYS has the best wardrobe/ accessories. 

First we started off by setting her hair to achieve the final look. While she was sitting there I said "Oh my gosh, you are so channeling the late 60's housewife". I quickly slapped on some NARS "Desire" blush and lipstick, my FAVORITE pink ever made by MAC: St. Germaine. I look down at the floor at this rad scarf she brought, so I decided to snap a few creative shots through my holes prisms (which are plastic and awful) to shoot some off the wall/ psychedelic stuff.
Here she is channeling "Magda" (only way younger and less tan). 

*If you are unsure of who Magda is: click here.

Since I specialize in clean makeup, I rarely get the chance to use the handful of really cool colors I have in my kit (Blue, Pink, Orange, Yellow). I ALWAYS carry them because maybe you get a flower girl or a teen who wants fun makeup. Doesn't always happen, but it does pop up at least 2-5 times a year for me. Once, I actually had a mother of a bride request the looks you are about to see. (Obviously I do a modified version of it.)
So, again, it is always a good idea to carry a few colors that are bright, even if you don't use them all the time. You just never know.





The next look was inspired by a dress her mother wore to their wedding reception, which I thought was so cool. Naturally that led us to the 60's with Emilie's already blonde hair and awesome long bangs.  I dug through my kit to find my blue eyeshadow, and found some individual lashes by Monda to put on the top and bottom corner lashes of her eyes so as to not be too extreme (or literal). I don't really carry these in my kit, just at home for creative shoots and whatnot. They take me a while to put on, but they're so great for this kind of work, I was very excited to finally use them!

Another thing I don't use too often in my kit? White Eyeliner. I have a retractable pencil I purchased from NYX last year, its a stellar pencil if you're looking to experiment and not spend a lot of money. 

*Tip: I like to use flesh colored liner in the waterline instead of white for a more natural look, but white is great for a little more drama especially with a pin-up or retro look.


At one point after I do Emilie's hair, you hear me gasp and then run out to my living room, dig through my shelves and get my Kevyn Aucoin books. I sit down and flip through "Making Faces". There is this photo of Christy Turlington that I have LOVED forever and I have always wanted to do a shoot like this. Even though I will never be able to replicate this masterpiece, I pull inspiration from it. You take a small piece away from something that really stands out or speaks to you and run with it. For me? It was the lashes and the blue eyeshadow. 

We moved onto old advertisements from Revlon, and vogue covers. The colors were so different then. It was bold and feminine. It made a statement. And the progression into the colored eyeshadow seemed fast and extreme. Kinda of love that. 

One of my favorite things to do is period pieces. So, the ideas just started to pour out. We looked up the photo and old ads from the 1960's. Blue Eyeshadows up to the brow, some of the more hipster looks included heavy lashes, on the top and bottom like Twiggy. We wanted to keep the look soft. Her hair already was the perfect shade of blonde, longish bangs, with face framing layers, I immediately thought of Bridget Bardot and her amazing voluminous hair dos.

I teased ever single section of her hair, sprayed and teased some more. I only wish I had been more aggressive because MOAR HAIR!!!! I love huge hair do-s. My next shoot may feature a beehive! <3

Let me know what you think! Thank you for reading. xoxoxoxo