May 25th, 2017 | Alexis Forsyth
When it comes to bridal beauty – the hairstyle you choose for your special day is one of the most important decisions you’ll make.
If your hair is mid-length or longer, then chances are, you’ll be considering a pretty up do to complete your bridal look, whether you’re going for something vintage, modern, ethereal or boho.
What we love about the up do is that it helps to frame the face whilst also accentuating the neckline of a bride’s chosen dress wedding dress. Best of all, the up do should put all day and look just as glam when the clock strikes midnight as when you swished down the aisle 12 hours before.
Your hair should always complement your bridal look, so when choosing a style think about your makeup and jewellery – and how all these aspects will work alongside your gown, bouquet and overall theme.
Luckily for you, we’ve rounded up a few of our favourite bridal up dos of the moment to get you started – Pinterest boards at the ready!
Chic and timeless, the French twist is one of our favourite up dos, perfect for channeling your inner Bardot. Mix things up a little by pairing your sophisticated twist with an unruly, messy bun or side swept fringe – and don’t be afraid to add some sparkle with a cute diamanté clip, flower pin or embellished hair comb.
A grown-up ponytail can look super stylish, especially if you have long glossy locks. For an A-list worthy look, we love extra height at the crown with the hair wrapped around the bobble for a flawless, polished finish. If you’re after something a little softer, ask your stylist to tease out hair strands from around your face to create more of a textured, undone look. And for an extra dose of wedding day glam, combine your high – or low – pony with tumultuous curls or loose waves.
There are lots of stylish ways to incorporate braids into your up do without looking like you’re ready to swap your wedding vows for an escapade at Coachella. From chunky braided crowns and dainty bands to ruffled fishtails and tangled twists – braids are a fun and oh-so-pretty addition to your bridal beauty look.
The top knot might be your go-to hairdo when your tresses are in need of a wash (or is that just us?), but have you thought about sporting this look on your special day? The bun is a bridal staple that’s versatile and flattering for all face shapes. Whether you’re after a sleek and elegant look, or a more tousled and wispy finish – the fashionable top knot is a gorgeous style perfect for the more contemporary bride.
The definitive retro hairdo – the beehive – is the hairstyle du jour if you’re after some voluminous back-combed action. This up do is bold and classy – think about combining it with loose bangs or soft curls for an indulgent vintage look. For a real princess moment – a decorative hairband will emphasise the volume of your hairstyle and work beautifully with your veil discreetly pinned underneath.
November 16th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
It’s not just the dress that creates a bride’s big day look, the hair and makeup styling play a big part too, which is why it’s always helpful to know a pro. So ladies, if you’re currently on the search for a bridal hair and makeup stylist, prepare to take note as we’re introducing the fabulous Becca Hunton to the blog today as a shiny new Brides Up North Sponsor.
Ticking both hair and makeup boxes, Yorkshire-based Becca is a fully qualified hairdresser and makeup artist, who’s worked in established salons and at top events in both Ibiza and London, before setting up her own company, specialising in bridal beauty.
And while Becca covers a whole range of bridal looks, she has a particular passion for vintage and festival style weddings, so if you’re planning a big day along these lines, this talented lady is definitely the stylist for you.
Here to tell us more about her services is the super stylist herself…
Can you tell us a little about your background and how you got into hair and makeup?
becca says: I’ve always been interested in hair and makeup since I was very young. As soon as I left school I became a hairdresser. Then at 19 I got into London College of Fashion to train in makeup. I loved it! Soon after I worked in Ibiza, creating looks for Hed Kandi and gorgeous brides. I’ve been part of many different salons, including Toni & Guy in London and have worked on shows at London Fashion Week. After ten years of gaining experience I decided to set up my own business. It’s been the best thing I’ve ever done! I’ve always loved getting brides ready for their big day and with having both hair and makeup qualifications, I can offer the full package.
What do you enjoy about working in the wedding industry?
I love working in the wedding industry because you get to meet so many new and interesting people all the time. Everybody loves a good wedding don’t they? There’s always a good buzz about the place!
What is your favourite part of your job?
I love it all but I’d say getting a bridal party ready for the big day is my favourite part of my job, it’s always such an excitable time. I love going to different venues too, I’ve been to some amazing places! I also love to see what lovely dresses the brides pick – there’s such a variety of dresses out there!
Can you tell us about the services you offer?
I’m a fully trained hairdresser and makeup artist. As well as getting a bridal party ready, I cut and colour. I also offer makeup lessons. I do a lot of vintage styling and have found that hen parties love to get involved with that. I can either do mini makeovers on all the hens, or give them makeup lessons and then they all have a go too.
What process will a bride go through if they pick you to do their wedding hair and makeup?
After contacting me we will discuss your wedding and ideas that you have. I can give you tips on where to look for ideas. A trial is included in the price, which usually happens four to six weeks before the wedding. That’s a time when we can try different looks. I take photos of the hair and makeup and also write up a face plan of the makeup I have used ready to recreate on the big day.
October 7th, 2016 | Rachel Parry
Two of our very favourite places in life to visit have to be the hairdressers and the beauty counters of a luxury department store. It’s therefore little surprise that we love to talk all things bridal hair and beauty, particularly with the pros who can offer an abundance of advice and those expert industry tips.
And they don’t come much more knowledgeable than our new Sponsor that we’re introducing on the bog today, the fabulous Lipstick & Curls.
With excess of 150 professional hair stylist and makeup artists on the books, these guys know their MAC from their McGrath and can provide a whole host of treatments to have you looking and feeling your very best for your big day. From bridal hair and makeup through to those all-important little extras, such as manicures, lash extensions and brow grooming, these guys have got it well and truly covered.
And if you like what you see ladies you will be excited to learn that the fabulous team are offering a 10% discount to all brides booking in 2016 if they mention Brides Up North.
Here to explain more about their super services is the director and head stylist of Lipstick & Curls, Amanda Moorhouse.
Tell us a little about the Lipstick & Curls team and the various services that you offer?
amanda says: Lipstick & Curls is a hair and makeup team of more than 150 artists providing services nationally for brides, parties, fashion and media. I established the company in London and we now have a second office in Leeds for the north of England.
We are always adding new services to our website as we try and give our customers the widest choice. We work closely with our customers helping them put a package together that will suit their group booking and event. Our most popular service is our bridal service where we can accommodate any size group and provide a wide range of services including manicure, lash extensions, brow grooming, hair styling and makeup.
We also work closely with other companies so can now help with recommendations for catering, car hire, DJ, photographer and much more.
In addition, we offer a great party service (particularly popular with hen parties) and make over lessons and masterclasses.
What makes you different to other hair stylists and makeup artists?
We are very proud to have a wonderfully talented team of more than 60 artists in the north of England, all of which have been handpicked and have an amazing body of work, outstanding skills and a winning personality!
All of our artists are highly skilled in all aspects of hair and make-up styling and are fully trained, fully insured and fully qualified to a very high standard. Our team are extremely friendly and have lots of experience working with brides on their special day. We want a reputation of being the best and we only employ the best.
What process will a bride go through if they pick Lipstick & Curls to do their wedding hair and makeup?
At Lipstick & Curls, we understand the importance of getting it perfect for a bride. We work with the bride to develop a look that will complement her dress, her features and her own personal style. We offer a very personal experience; we want all our brides to feel special. We develop a relationship with all of our brides and work together to create what they desire for their special day. This often includes sending pictures to each other including images of the dress, themselves and perhaps a colour pallet.
Most of our brides will have a trial, this usually happens six to eight weeks prior to the wedding (every bride is different however and some like to do this earlier). As soon as a bride has sorted her dress we encourage them to get in touch, if not before! We want as much time as possible to work with our brides and to be part of this process by letting us help them along the way. We can offer advice right at the beginning on head pieces, hair extensions and top tips on how to look after your hair and skin in the run up to the big day.
What advice do you offer brides when they are planning their wedding, and where do you advise that they look for bridal hair and makeup inspiration?
I’ve met a lot of brides and whilst most of them relish in the thought of planning a wedding, in hindsight it’s not everyone’s ‘cup of tea’. My main advice is it’s your day, so do it your way! There are no rules, so make this day your absolute fantasy wedding (whatever that may be).
In terms of inspiration, there is lots of information online and so many alternative options when it comes to creating your perfect day. Remember it should be fun so enjoy planning it together!
Pinterest is fab for sourcing images and collecting ideas. However, I‘m a firm believer that showing our customers our past work, often does the same. Look at as many blogs and websites as you can, and in particular look at ‘real brides’ and read about their chosen looks and experiences. It’s the best inspiration!
June 9th, 2015 | Julia Braime
As we continue to look to wedded stars for inspiration for bridal wear, hair and makeup, we’re delighted to be putting the gorgeous fearne cotton in the spotlight today – one of our top celebrity crushes here at Brides Up North HQ.
Whether she’s snapped on the way to the Radio 1 offices, presenting on TV or gracing the red carpet, style setter Fearne seems to get it right time and time again.
Cool, quirky and individual in her look, we all knew Miss Cotton was unlikely to wear a traditional wedding dress when she tied the knot to her long-term partner Jesse Wood last summer. And we were right as Fearne dazzled in an ankle-length Pucci gown, complete with sparkling headband, heels and bag. Pure perfection!
So let’s explore how you can steal classy Cotton’s big day look…
Though individual Fearne’s dress appears to take inspiration from a variety of sources. The cute tea-length with wide neck gives the gown a classy vintage edge and is reminiscent of the likes of Audrey Hepburn’s 1950s wedding dress. Meanwhile the soft pleated bodice and floaty tulle skirt have a somewhat Grecian feel about them, but then Fearne’s overall look, with soft hair and makeup, also says boho bride.
So the choice is yours. You can choose to replicate Fearne’s attire throughout or pick just one or two elements as inspiration. So for example you might love the cute length and capped sleeves of Fearne’s dress but not like the sparkle. In which case interest can instead be added with lace detail, a sash or romantic floral corsages. Alternatively you might prefer a fuller skirt than Fearne’s or a strapless or sleeveless design.
For fans of detail there are dresses with sparkle and embellishment along the neckline, sleeves or bodice that create a similar look to Miss Cotton and give brides varying levels of glitz to choose from.
If however you feel a carbon copy is the only way to go, top designer Jenny Packham produced an identical dress called Gemma in her 2014 collection with beautiful intricate detailing across the neckline which gives the illusion of an off-the-shoulder dress, just as Fearne’s did.
Clockwise from top left: image source| image source, photography by Chantal Andre Photography| image source| image source, photography by Karen Wise Photography| image source| image source| image source| image source| image source| image source, photography by Birds of a Feather.
If there’s one thing females envy Fearne for (apart from her amazing career) it’s her voluminous, golden glossy hair that seems to suit any do imaginable.
Ahead of the pack as always Fearne’s been rocking the lob (long bob) for quite some time now, even though the rest of us have only just caught on to the style. So keeping true to the relaxed look she’s become admired for, Fearne shunned a structured bridal up do in favour of wearing her gorgeous shoulder-length locks down with a cool, effortless wave.
The great news is the look is easy to achieve and works on most hair types and lengths (just those with cropped dos that will miss out on this one). Brides can tighten up the wave slightly to create more of a curl for the ceremony if they so wish and then allow to drop throughout the day for a more boho appearance come the evening celebrations.
Fearne finishes off her look with a sparkling silver headband to pick out the detail on her dress, again an easy look to copy, with numerous stunning vintage-style headpieces available to brides that like a little bling.
Clockwise from top left: image source, photography by Long Distance Loving| image source| image source| image source, photography by Bryce Covey| image source| image source, photography by Getty, Joanna Kustra| image source| image source| image source| image source, photography by Codrean Photography & Films.
We’ve seen Fearne work a variety of makeup looks over the years though she often returns to the safety of her signature style – lined eyes and a slick of lippy. Though slightly toned down, Fearne fell back on this look once again for her wedding day.
A great option for brides wanting fairly natural makeup, the finish is soft and pretty. Whether hiring a professional or going it alone ladies will want a flawless dewy base on which to begin, created using a light foundation and concealer and finished with a dusting of powder.
For a healthy boho glow Fearne’s cheekbones have been defined with bronzer and then a highlighter has been added to the cheeks and nose to reflect the light.
Eyes are kept simple with a sweeping of light, shimmering eyeshadow, that famous flick of eyeliner and a couple of coats of mascara.
Finally the main focal point of Fearne’s look, the lips. Lips should be lined for definition and staying power and then filed in with a warm pink hue for a glamourous yet girlie look.
May 22nd, 2015 | Julia Braime
That is the question.
Today’s big debate topic is a dilemma ladies come up against time and time throughout their lives and is a particularly tough call for brides-to-be – to grow your hair or not for your wedding day. As well as the engagement ring a signal that proposal has taken place is often a bride’s hair growing at a rapid rate as hair appointments are put on hold while operation rapunzel is carried out.
However while once long locks reigned supreme in the wedding hair world, a new relaxed and individual vibe is coming through that gives brides-to-be more choice than ever before.
So what’s it going to be ladies, long or lopped?
rachel says: let it grow
Ok so I once had lovely long blonde locks, then at the age of 14 I started work in a hairdressers and before I knew it my hair was up by my chin as I became the salon Guinea pig.
While I didn’t particularly mind, the problem is I’ve never had the patience or strength to get it back to that length and so see a wedding day as a goal to get mission grow back on track once and for all.
Furthermore I feel that growing your hair gets all the more impossible the older you get making a wedding day almost a last chance saloon scenario for me to resurrect my once long trestles.
And it seems I’m not alone in this trail of thought. Many friends of mine that have gotten engaged have instantly put the brakes on their regular salon visits in an attempt to lengthen their locks for the big day, whether opting for an up or down do.
So while I’m all for brides rocking their own individual look and not succumbing to a stereotypical bridal mould, I do love to see ladies walking down the aisle with long loose waves, just as the lovely princess Kate did on her special day.
And for indecisive people like myself, long hair can act as a safety net as it gives a bride lots of different options for their wedding day look – down, partly up, or relaxed dos such as messy top knots and romantic fishtail plaits. Those with short hair however can be confined to just a handful of styles.
Now, bring on the hair boosting supplements *heads to Holland & Barret*
julia says – it’s a no grow
You can always count on an impending wedding to bring on a princess complex.
Even if you’re an otherwise hip and happening chick who rocks a cool cut and knows her lobs from her pobs, one mention of wedding day styling and the bi-monthly trims go out of the window. I’ve seen it happen to my best girls… and – I’ll admit – I’ve had it happen to me.
I’m just one of those girls who feels better in a bob. Short, choppy locks suit my face shape and style. My (sometimes almost white) blonde hair just looks cooler with a bit of bluntness, and I love an interesting neckline.
But when the proposal dropped, what did I do? Squealed over the ring, spent my month’s wages on wedding magazines and promptly started the “must grow my hair” process. Why? Not sure really. Having long hair is just a thing brides do, right?
Brides Up North, I implore you… claim back your rights to a haircut. Ditch the fish oil supplements and the coconut oils. Be yourself. Wear your dream dress… but with the hair that he fell in love with. Otherwise you’ll spend a lifetime looking at your wedding photos and wondering who the gal with the funny up-do is, or (worse, and like me) marvelling at your amazing tresses and wondering why you cut it all off after the wedding.
Because – and I guarantee you this – you will cut it all back off again after the wedding.
You know it and I know it, and whether you can stand to spend the next 12 months painstakingly watching your hair grow or not… some girls just aren’t meant to have long hair. If you’ve felt the call of a bob before, you’ll feel it again.
After all, what says “Brand New Mrs” better than brand new hair?…
Save yourself the hassle and spend the supplement fund on shoes instead. Much healthier.
what you said on facebook:
Laura: “I’m trying to grow mine. I just think my dress would look better with long hair, and if not now, then never!”
Penny: “I’ve always had short hair and it would feel weird to change my whole look just for one day”
Kate: “I’ve been growing mine since we got engaged – it’s nice to look special on your wedding day”
Jayne: “I can’t grow mine past my shoulders, so I guess I’ll be a bride with a bob!”
What’s your verdict girls? We’d love to know?
April 24th, 2015 | Julia Braime
Today on Brides Up North its all about the aesthetics, as we argue the case for keeping things natural or giving the beauty gods a helping hand. We ask: wedding day beauty – what to do? No added effort or bring in the experts?
rachel says: keep it natural
While I do enjoy a good Mac makeover now and again I have to say I’m more a fan of the au natural look than I am an obvious made up look, especially when it comes to weddings.
I’ve first-hand double-taken brides arriving on the aisle, not because I’m dazzled by their radiance but because I barely recognise them. Who is this Barbie-like bride and what have you done with my friend?
Many ladies can think they have to look a certain way for their big day, often adding false nails, eyelashes and fake tan to their pre-wedding beauty regime that they wouldn’t usually entertain. But to me the most important thing is to look like you – a flippin’ good version of you, but you all the same.
I’m pretty certain the majority of grooms out there would also much rather lift a veil to find a bride that they actually recognise rather than someone who could give Amy Childs a run for her money at the cosmetics counter.
And that’s not the only problem, if you go for an on-trend fashionable look chances are you will regret it when look back on your wedding photos, perhaps within a few months, never mind years.
So I say keep it natural ladies, just like our celebrity bride yesterday, Ms Palermo. This doesn’t mean you can’t enhance your makeup a little by adding a bolder lip colour or subtle, smoky eyes but just be sure not to go OTT, which should result in a look that’s more wowie than it is TOWIE.
julia says: go all-out
Ooh, I love a good makeover.
Girls, hear me! This is your wedding day for crissakes. If there was ever a time to step it up, that time is now.
Yes, he loves you just as you are, and yes, you don’t want him to wonder who the make-up caked stranger advancing down the aisle might be, but really – he bought you a diamond – an all-out effort on the most important day of your life really is the least you can do.
First and foremost, when will you get the chance for such unashamed pampering again? Take it from this working mum, not when you’re changing nappies at 5am or catching up on emails at midnight. If I were you, I’d revel in the chance for a bit of spa-time and shopping. Full body massages, regular manicures, raiding the Charlotte Tilbury counter of a Saturday afternoon – the wedding budget can cover that!
Secondly, upping the beauty ante prior to the big day shouldn’t leave you looking like Franken-bride – just choose carefully. In the weeks pre-wedding, I’d leave the chemical peel and spray tan appointments free, but carefully placed individual eyelashes or pretty highlights and even a light swoosh of airbrush makeup will leave you looking flawless and fresh.
Often, the cheapest changes are the most effective. Prior to my own wedding way back in 2010 (when we barely even knew what a wedding blog was), I upped the ante on my regular runs, pencilled in lots more shut eye, ditched the vino and glugged lots of water instead. I treated myself to lots of lovely beauty products and more regular trims to keep my crowning glory in ship-shape. On the day itself, I brought in the experts: my nails were buffed and polished to perfection, hair casually coiffed and make-up beautifully done. The result: tons of confidence and a set of wedding pictures that I’m really proud of.
Did I still look like myself?
Nope. I looked better.
what you said
Kim: “I definitely plan to go glam on my wedding day, this is my chance to look like a princess and I fully intend to make the most of it!”
Melissa: “I’m keeping things natural. My partner hates heavy make up and I don’t want to scare him off!”
Julie: “I’ve heard horror stories about fake tan going wrong, so I plan to let my natural beauty shine through.”
Kate: “Part of my hen party involves a spa day so the bridesmaid and I are going to do lots of pre-wedding pampering!”
We’d love to hear what you’re planning for your big day beauty look?
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