Ask the experts

Sarah Brock shares beauty tips for brides (and guests)!

Sarah Brock - Bridal Make Up

Hands up if you’re heading for a wedding in the next three months? Yes? Thought so, which is why we’ve appealed to award-winning make up artist (and Cult Beauty expert) Sarah Brock for some much-needed guidance (all of the above are from her exquisite portfolio).

So whether you’re the main event, a bridesmaid (or even just a lowly attendee), Sarah has put together these tips and tricks to ensure you look perfect come tears, sweat and snogging.

{Cult Beauty} Hi Sarah, weddings are stressful – not to mention emotional – events for all involved. What are the three best techniques to help make up stay flawless from morning ’til… morning?

{Sarah Brock} First thing’s first – hydration! Before base, make sure you use a lightweight moisturiser (even if your skin is dry). Rich creams will cause make up to slide off within hours, no matter how expertly foundation is applied. Alpha-H’s Essential Hydration Cream and Resultime by Collin’s Regenerating Collagen Gel are both brilliant, non-greasy skin nourishers.

Secondly, invest in products to help enhance longevity. Primers may seem superfluous, but the right one should blur imperfections, unify skin tone and allow you to opt for a lighter foundation which keeps the look modern and fresh.

And obviously opt for waterproof/long wear formulations applied in thin, even layers. Multiple, super-sheer layers will wear much better than one thick one, and allow you to get through the day feeling confident (and looking beautiful). Just ensure your mum or best friend has a pressed powder (3 Custom Color’s Translucent Face Powder is perfect), and a lipstick or gloss in her bag/pocket/posy, to keep shine at bay and your lips looking luscious.

Sarah Brock - Top Beauty Tips for Brides

{CB} If the bride is having her make up done for her, are there any directions she should pass on/specifics she should ask for? It must be quite daunting for brides who don’t wear a lot – or aren’t familiar with make up – to sit quietly while someone else ‘does’ their face?

{SB} Yes – definitely! It’s really important for the bride to let the artist know the way they usually wear make up (if at all), both everyday and in the evening. The last thing a bride wants is to ‘shock’ everybody when she turns up at the venue, so it’s important to let the professional know the way you like to look – as well as which base you wear (matte/luminising/sheer etc.). If you know your skin type – oily/dry – pass this information on; the more the make up artist knows, the less likelihood of error!

Let the pro see photos of the dress, as well as how you plan to wear your hair and the colour(s) the bridesmaids are wearing. Make up shouldn’t match (it’s no longer 1986), but the finished beauty look should be in keeping with the ‘theme’ – even in a super-subtle, understated way. Also, ‘show and tell’ images of beauty looks you love – look at bridal magazines, but also fashion spreads and pics of celebrities on the red carpet.

And photograph each look. What looks beautiful ‘in real life’ may not translate to camera – and vice versa. A good make up artist should understand how to strike the ideal balance.

{CB} Are there any wedding ‘looks’ you think should be avoided?

{SB} Don’t opt for anything too drastically different – you want to ‘wow’, not dumbfound on the day! Don’t choose anything too ‘high fashion’ – nods to trends can work beautifully, but channeling anything too ‘out there’ will look dated very quickly. And by all means take inspiration, but remember that not everything looks right on everyone – tailor make up to flatter your features and colouring.

{CB} What would you recommend brides (or guests!) begin doing 4 – 6 weeks before the event (apart from panicking)?

{SB} It’s all about having a good, regular skin care regime. As I say to all my brides, if you can’t get to a salon for regular facials, treat yourself at home with luxurious, targeted products (it’s never too late). Equip yourself with a nourishing balm cleanser, gentle exfoliator (either physical or chemical), treatment mask (I swear by Glamglow’s ThirstyMud and Erno Laszlo’s Transphuse Age-Defying Mask), rebalancing moisturiser, eye cream (try Start Over) and rehabilitative lip balm. And drink plenty of water – it’s one of the best things you can do to guarantee you glow come W-Day!


Verity Douglas

Verity Douglas

Content Editor

Verity is our Content Editor and a Cult Beauty veteran. Currently on maternity leave, raising Cult Beauty’s honorary ‘word nerd’, Tabitha, she speaks fluent ‘beauty’ and loves nothing more than the marriage of language and lip balm (and cleanser and candles… ad infinitum). Nothing can stop her from quoting Nancy Mitford, treating herself to yet another Bella Freud candle for her desk or buying that pilgrim-esque collared or heavily fringed outfit she’s been eyeing. You can trust her to debunk widespread beauty myths and dispense invaluable advice with ease…