Home | 30 Worst Wedding Makeup Mistakes to Avoid

30 Worst Wedding Makeup Mistakes to Avoid

by Emma Arendoski
Published: Last Updated on

Every bride wants to look her best on her wedding day. But did you know there are some wedding makeup mistakes you could be making without even knowing it? To help, we’ve compiled a list of the most common wedding makeup mistakes to avoid so you look (and feel!) your best on your big day.

Read on for the full list!

wedding makeup mistakes

Wedding Makeup Mistakes to Avoid

1. Not doing a makeup trial.

You will absolutely want to do a trial run for your makeup at least three weeks before your wedding. You’ll also want to make sure the trial is checked afterward in daylight for the best possible assessment. Finally, be sure to wear a white top (it will give you a more accurate visual when wearing your dress).

2. Going too neutral or pale on lipstick.

Some neutral shades or pale lipsticks can appear washed out in wedding photographs. Take a cue from your makeup artist and see what she would suggest for your lipstick. If that means going a bit lighter than you might normally wear, you may be surprised how awesome it looks with your skin tone — and how it looks in your wedding photos.

3. Forgetting the waterproof mascara.

This one is obvious, but you’d be surprised how many brides forget this essential step.

4. Rushing through your makeup the day-of.

The reason why getting ready the day of the wedding is a drawn-out process is because you want to really take your time. Do not rush through your hair and makeup. It is recommended to give yourself at least one solid hour of makeup prep time the morning of the wedding, just in case.

5. Trying a completely different look on your wedding day.

Your wedding is not the time to experiment with a new look such as a crazy makeup trend, or hair color. You want to look like the best version of yourself — not an entirely new person.

6. Wearing too much blush.

There’s a difference between blushing bride and whoa, mama. Don’t go too rosy and make sure the color is not too bright or too dark. Have your makeup artist give a recommendation on what type of blush matches your skin tone. Also, don’t forget to blend.

7. Glitter. Of Any kind.

Anything with glitter in it is a huge no for the wedding day. Glitter can reflect light towards the camera, which can cause white spots on your skin in wedding photos.

8. Changing up your skin care regiment weeks before the wedding.

Don’t switch up your daily cleanser, moisturizer, or makeup weeks before the wedding, which can lead to breakouts. If the skincare regimen you’re using is working, keep with it.

9. Forgetting about your eyebrows.

Your eyebrows do a wonderful job framing your eyes. (See: how to shape eyebrows like a pro.) Be sure to have your eyebrows waxed one week before the wedding. A brow powder can enhance the look of your brows on your wedding day, too.

10. Wearing super-shiny lip gloss.

Lip gloss wears off too quickly AND can stick to your veil as you walk down the aisle. Skip the gloss (which you’ll be reapplying constantly all day anyway) and opt fora lip stain, which lasts many hours and won’t rub off.

11. Forgetting to moisturize (and hydrate).

Keep hydrated and moisturize weeks leading up to the wedding. The day of the wedding, use a gentle cleanser and plenty of moisturizer, especially under your eyes. This will ensure makeup is easy to apply and will set well, especially when applying under-eye concealer.

12. Forgetting to whiten your teeth.

One week before the wedding, use an at-home whitening kit or go to a professional for a whitening treatment.

You’re going to be smiling a lot during the day (and in photos), so you will want an ultra sparkly white smile. This kit is rated #1.

13. Opting to do your own makeup on your wedding day.

There are few things I always (always!) urge brides to do and one of them is to hire a professional hairstylist and makeup artist the day of the wedding. If there’s any day you ought to feel pampered and look your best, it is definitely your wedding day. It costs more, yes, but the results are twofold: you’ll have a relaxing experience and your makeup will look incredible in different lighting, which will make you feel confident. A confident bride = happy bride. And also, you’ll look your best in your photos.

14. Forgetting to look up inspiration / ideas before the trial run.

Pin your favorite images of wedding day makeup to a Pinterest board to show to your makeup artist at your trial run. Pictures are easier to show than trying to explain what you envision for your own bridal makeup.

15. Forgetting a makeup touch-up kit.

You’ll want to have all of your makeup available in a small kit (see: how to make an emergency wedding kit) ready to touch-up your makeup, if needed. The most important things to keep in your kit include your lip color, cotton swabs (for touch ups), bobby pins, hairspray, translucent powder, a compact mirror, and lash glue (if you’re wearing false lashes).

16. Wearing false lashes for the first time.

False lashes can really make your eyes pop, but wearing them the first time can be tricky. You should wear them a few times before the big day and then decide if you want them on your wedding day.

17. Spray tanning for the first time.

Again, experimenting with looks is fine — just not on your wedding day! If you’re hoping to have a faux glow, get it done weeks in advance. Spray tanning can sometimes come out blotchy or too-orange. It requires lots of exfoliation and moisturizer (and practice) to get it right. We recommend trying it a handful of times before the wedding, just in case you change your mind.

18. Wearing the wrong foundation shade.

Your skin color may vary in the summer (with a slight tan) versus winter. Make sure your foundation is the perfect match for your skin for your wedding so it doesn’t look like you’re wearing a mask.

19. Forgetting to wear powder.

A high-quality translucent powder will set the foundation on your face. This will give it staying power to look great all day long.

20. Forgetting to exfoliate your lips.

Most people think exfoliation begins and ends on their skin, but it applies to lips, too. Use scrub or lip exfoliator and moisturizing lip balm the night before the wedding so your lips are properly moisturized the day-of. This will prime your lips for your lip stain, too.

21. Not wearing the right apparel when getting ready.

There are many apparel choices to pick for getting ready the morning of the wedding. You’ll want to choose something like a robe or a these shirts which can be removed without lifting it over your head (which can ruin your hair and makeup after application). The last thing you want to do is mess up your perfect look right before putting on your gown.

Our favorite? A robe — for the whole crew! Browse these bridesmaid robes on Etsy. They’re the best!

22. Using a pencil eye liner.

Stick to a gel-based formula (like this), as a pencil eye liner can wear off too quickly.

23. Not using setting spray.

Once your makeup is picture-perfect, use a setting spray to keep it all in place. This is especially important for hot summer weddings when you’re more prone to sweating. (According to reviews, this type is the best on the market.)

24. Tan lines.

It’s best to avoid getting tan lines at all costs (can you imagine a halter tan line with a strapless dress? It is nearly impossible to hide). Instead, avoid long exposure in the sun if you can prior to the wedding and wear plenty of SPF. You also won’t want a sunburn (or peeling skin) on your big day.

25. Forgetting to bring oil absorbing sheets.

You never know when you’ll need oil absorbing sheets, so be sure to keep a travel pack in your wedding day kit just in case.

26. Penciling in your brows.

Eyebrows penciled in can look too harsh. Instead, use eyebrow powder (like this) so your eyebrows look more natural. Plus, an eyebrow powder will last longer anyway.

27. Wearing airbrush makeup.

Airbrush makeup CAN be awesome, especially if you don’t need a lot of coverage. But for brides who require move coverage — i.e. breakouts, combination skin, redness, etc. — you might want to stick to traditional foundation. It will cover better, last longer, and is easier to touch-up.

28. Skimping on concealer.

Under-eye circles, red spots, blemishes… concealer is a magic product, isn’t it? Your wedding day is not the time to skimp, so make sure you get them all covered up with a quality concealer. This one has rave reviews and lasts all day.

29. Constantly wiping your face.

You’re covered on the tears front if you wear waterproof mascara… but don’t wipe constantly at your face when you do have the occasional tears of joy. Instead, dab to avoid getting streaks on your face from makeup.

30. Plucking your brows right before the big day.

It is best to have your brows (and any facial hair) waxed well before the big day, as mentioned earlier in this list. But most importantly, avoid plucking any hairs the morning of the wedding (it can cause redness and swelling).

31. Not touching up your roots.

Your perfect wedding makeup will look even better if your hair coloring is on schedule. Make sure your roots are covered up if you have color-treated hair.

32. Picking at or popping pimples.

It’s easier to cover up a pimple with makeup than a scab. If you do have a blemish, treat with a cream and don’t touch it. Even touching it with your skin can spread oils across your face, which can lead to more breakouts.

33. Forgetting a deep conditioning hair treatment.

One week before the wedding, do a deep-conditioning hair mask (something like this) for silkier, shinier hair.

34. Washing your hair the morning of the wedding.

Hair is easier to style when it is not freshly washed. Wash it for the last time 1 day before the wedding.

35. Not getting a manicure.

All eyes will be you… and then on your sparkling ring! Make sure your nails are freshly manicured and your hands are moisturized. Also, make sure you clean your ring before the big day so it is extra sparkly. This works great.

36. Applying makeup in the wrong order.

A lot of product goes into your perfect wedding look. Here’s the proper order of makeup to ensure it’s applied correctly:

1. Cleanser
2. Serum
3. Moisturizer
4. Primer
5. Foundation
6. Concealer
7. Powder
8. Bronzer
9. Blush
10. Highlighter
11. Setting Spray

37. Forgetting to use a straw for beverages.

And last, don’t forget to sip beverages with a straw throughout the night. It will keep your smile shiny and white and keep your lipstick from smudging.

Now that you know which makeup mistakes to avoid, it’s time to enter a giveaway for a brush holder to keep everything organized for the big day!

foldable travel makeup brush holder

by forshee designs

by forshee designs


P.S. What’s your favorite makeup tip from the list? Tell us in the comments section below! ↓

Additional Helpful Wedding Makeup Tips & Links

• These lipstick application techniques include tips on lip liner and why you should wear it (from a pro makeup artist)

• Learn how to make an emergency wedding day kit

• How to Shape Eyebrows Like a Pro

• Check out these stunning wedding makeup examples for perfect makeup combinations

• What’s the best eyebrow shape for your face? Find out with this helpful chart

This post contains affiliate links and we may make a commission on a sale at no additional cost to you.

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Brenda August 1, 2021 - 9:00 am

Useful post about makeup, It’s best to learn from other’s mistakes than to feel the urge to commit one by oneself & then think of learning. I think we’ve all made some of these mistakes to some degree or another. I’m glad that you have shared all these mistakes here.

Jessy T. March 22, 2016 - 8:50 pm

Best tip is to definitely do a make-up trial! Line it up with your bridal shower or bachelorette party!!

Chelsea M. March 22, 2016 - 4:17 pm

Loved these tips! Especially the lip color advice. I was back and forth between using any lip color at all.

Alexandra Visconti March 22, 2016 - 1:39 pm

I never knew to put on foundation before concealer! I do the opposite…good to know!!

Amanda March 21, 2016 - 9:19 pm

Also, I forgot to mention that my favorite makeup tip from this article is DON’T WEAR TOO MUCH BLUSH!!! I used to do that as a teenager, I still feel embarrassed for my younger self when I see pictures.

Amanda March 21, 2016 - 9:14 pm

I love all the patterns available in the etsy shop, how fun! I’ve got to say one of my favorite items they offer are those adorable aprons.

Thanks for sharing!

Brenna March 21, 2016 - 5:50 pm

Not using a pencil eye liner! Never really thought about that and I use one every day

Brenna March 21, 2016 - 5:46 pm

Love the fabric lanyard badge holder! Would be perfect for work

krystel March 20, 2016 - 3:06 pm

the deep condtioning tip

Andrea W March 20, 2016 - 2:34 pm

Definitely going to aim for taking those 18 getting ready photos that…at least some of them!

krystel March 20, 2016 - 2:09 pm

i love the purple Hawaiian floral pattern

Kelly M. March 19, 2016 - 8:57 pm

Penciling in the brows is my favorite tip!

Kelly M. March 19, 2016 - 8:57 pm

I love the cute cupcake apron!

Abbey B March 19, 2016 - 8:28 pm

The Blue Geo Pattern is so cute!

latanya March 18, 2016 - 7:28 pm

Forgetting a makeup touch-up kit.

Kristin Bradstreet March 17, 2016 - 12:34 pm

Great tips! I hadn’t thought of doing a deep conditioning hair treatment the week before. I will definitely add that to my list! Also, i’ve been thinking of getting teeth whitening done professionally before the wedding but was wondering when I should get that done. Love that that was on the list also!

Marta March 17, 2016 - 1:26 am

Exfoliating lips is a new helpful tip to me!

sydney March 16, 2016 - 10:06 pm

Love the crossbody bags!

Christina Chong March 16, 2016 - 8:41 pm

I seriously need help with make-up tips. I’ve never worn make-up before.

Skyler C March 16, 2016 - 6:36 pm

My favorite makeup tip is the order to apply your makeup in!

Skyler C March 16, 2016 - 6:34 pm

I love the purple fiesta print!

Tiffany March 16, 2016 - 11:41 am

The order to not apply your makeup

Tiffany March 16, 2016 - 11:38 am

I like the lanyards they look really soft for your neck

Lisa Ro March 16, 2016 - 12:39 am

I love the navy blue and purple kitchen apron! So fun!

Susan Samuel March 15, 2016 - 4:20 pm

Loved the purple hawaiian floral makeup brush organiser.

Susan Samuel March 15, 2016 - 4:16 pm

I am useless at makeup, so really loved to see the order for applying it. I may manage to get it correct one day.

elizabeth c March 15, 2016 - 11:00 am

i love the quilted pot holders

Amanda F. March 15, 2016 - 10:23 am

My favorite make-up tip is the order of application! A properly prepped canvas will give a flawless look!

marie March 15, 2016 - 10:22 am

the tips in the correct order, definitely great advice!

Amanda F. March 15, 2016 - 10:22 am

Love the floral pot holders!

marie March 15, 2016 - 10:21 am

grey damask is my favorite!

megan van March 15, 2016 - 10:19 am

Ah! I so agree with 30. Plucking your brows right before the big day.

too much room for error on my part – I’m going to have mine shaped by a professional!

Quin A. March 15, 2016 - 9:47 am

The how to apply makeup tip in the correct order is so crucial. I always forget to apply my serum before moisturizer!

Quin A. March 15, 2016 - 9:45 am

The Gray Damask is very chic!!

Mary L March 14, 2016 - 10:34 pm

Love the idea of getting a good lip stain

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:57 pm

Hi Mary! I didn’t even realize until thinking about it how often lip gloss really is re-applied. Lip stain makes so much sense. Glad you liked it and thanks for stopping by!

Melody K March 14, 2016 - 10:12 pm

My favorite item is actually the mini wallet/wristlets! Adorable

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:57 pm

Agreed! They’re adorable!

Melody K March 14, 2016 - 10:07 pm

I’m definitely getting a makeup artist for my day! I need professional help! Pun intended.

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:58 pm

Haha, love it, Melody! I’m happy to hear you’re getting a makeup artist. It’s one of the few things I always insist on, simply because you deserve to feel pampered (and look your best). I hope this post helped! xo, E

Katelin Spart March 14, 2016 - 10:06 pm

Love the brush holder!!! Organization is key!!!

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:58 pm

Organization IS key! Forshee Designs’ brush holders are my favorite in the shop. The patterns are so colorful and fun, too! Very handy to have. Good luck, Katelin!

Mary L March 14, 2016 - 10:01 pm

I love the purple Hawaiian floral make up brush roll!

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:59 pm

Cute print, Mary! I love that design, too!

Lindsey H March 14, 2016 - 9:56 pm

Makeup tip #9, “Forgetting your brows” is so crucial!! Definitely my favorite!

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 11:59 pm

Me too, Lindsey. This post reminded me how much I’ve neglected mine lately. Time for a wax and to invest in a beautiful brow powder. :) Thanks for stopping by!

Lindsey H March 14, 2016 - 9:52 pm

Love the bright yellow floral apron!!

Maya J. March 14, 2016 - 8:01 pm

Love the personalized snowflake Christmas stocking

latanya March 14, 2016 - 7:53 pm

Fabric Hot Pad – Gray Damask

Colette P. March 14, 2016 - 7:34 pm

Another fave of mine is the Cupcakes apron! :)

melanie huttner March 14, 2016 - 7:29 pm

My favorite tip is to not forget the setting spray!!!!

Emma Arendoski March 15, 2016 - 12:00 am

Yes, Melanie! So true! It would be a shame to have the makeup fade or wear off during the day. A setting spray will really help to keep your makeup looking fresh. Thanks for stopping by!

melanie huttner March 14, 2016 - 7:28 pm

I love the ladies apron!

Jenna March 14, 2016 - 7:26 pm

I love the lanyards for the keys on Forshee designs. They are so handy!

Nicole M. March 14, 2016 - 7:14 pm

The false lash tip is so important!

Jessica Z March 14, 2016 - 7:07 pm

I like the “no picking or popping a pimple” tip because I am so guilty of that!

Jessica Z March 14, 2016 - 7:06 pm

I like the Hawaiian Floral pattern!

Magda March 14, 2016 - 5:05 pm

These are great! I am bookmarking and sharing with my bridesmaids.

Heather L. March 14, 2016 - 3:37 pm

I love the floral print!

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 3:45 pm

Beautiful choice, Heather! Good luck on the giveaway!

tori March 14, 2016 - 3:01 pm

these are such great tips! Its hard to find a good resource for your big day but this was so helpful!

Emma Arendoski March 14, 2016 - 3:04 pm

Hi Tori!

I’m so happy to hear you liked it and that it was helpful for you! If you have any questions about these or suggestions on other topics you need help with, we’re here! :)


Comments are closed.

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