Princess Eugenie on her wedding day, makeup artist Hannah Martin
Beauty and The Bride
Makeup artist Hannah Martin is a bonafide beauty star—she’s the master behind big-day bridal looks for the Royals along with creating beauty looks for stars like Miranda Kerr and other high-profile clients.
Bridal beauty is Martin’s happy place—no wonder, since her signature look is fresh, natural and glowy; basically every bride-to-be’s go-to look. It was a thrill to talk wedding day makeup with this expert artist—brides-to-be, take notes!
Do you have a general philosophy on bridal beauty? What should be the guiding principle for someone trying to determine what their big-day look should be?
When it comes to someone’s wedding day and their bridal beauty, I’ve always had the philosophy that a bride should aim to look like herself at her very best and not try to emulate someone else. A partner wants to recognise their bride and most brides want to feel like themselves so defining and enhancing your best features is the way to go. Look at photographs of yourself that you like and take beauty inspiration from there. Often a bride just needs a touch more than she’d usually wear, but the aim should be to keep the look classic and timeless, so it doesn’t date.
What are your favourite bridal looks?
My favourite bridal looks are actually really quite simple, just beautifully executed. A soft flush of pink on the cheeks is a must for me, no matter your skin tone. A subtle smokey eye is always a winner and by smokey I don’t necessarily mean dark, I mean beautifully blended, eye colour-enhancing shadows that help the eyes pop. A little liner helps to define the eyes, but I try to keep it minimal, so eyes don’t get too dark. I actually love warm shades through the crease of the eye from subtle pinks on fair skin to warm coppery browns on deeper, warmer skin tones.
What's your guidance on pre-wedding skincare in the lead-up to the big day? Treatments, types of skincare products to use, etc.
When it comes to skin prep in the lead up to the big day, I say definitely consult your facialist to come up with a course of treatment. If you’re not in the habit of regular facials (I must admit that I’m not) and you want to get your skin into the best condition, then seek out a good facialist with enough time to start a program with them. If that’s not in the cards, then I swear by upping your daily intake of water as a first step-it really does work wonders for improving your skin’s condition and clarity. Then I suggest adopting a simple routine of double cleansing morning and evening, exfoliating twice a week and feeding the skin with a decent serum and then follow with eye cream, face cream and SPF.
Martin applies a shimmering eye, with client Miranda Kerr
True or false: you should never try out a trend look on your wedding day.
True. True. True! You should never try out a trend on your wedding day! Trends come and go and you don’t want to look back at your photos in a few year’s time and think “What was I thinking?’. Saying that, if you are particularly fashion-focused and have always followed the most recent trends, then it could be totally expected and accepted that you will have tried a trend for your wedding day—just don’t try it if you think you might live to regret it.
What are the biggest mistakes you see brides make in choosing their beauty lineup?
The biggest mistake I usually see is choosing the wrong shade of foundation. Go too light or too dark and it really does impact the entire look—so be sure to find a base makeup that matches your skin tone perfectly; you can always warm up your complexion with bronzer.
What are the most important things to think about when applying makeup on the big day if you choose to DIY? Do you think it's ok to do your own makeup?
It is totally fine to do your own wedding makeup provided you feel confident doing so. If you are someone who finds makeup challenging and know it could cause you anxiety, then I’d suggest booking a makeup artist to help alleviate that stress. If you’re doing it yourself, I just advise that you practice multiple times so you know exactly what you're doing. When you’re happy with the look, take everything you used and put it in a separate makeup bag so you have everything you need and just use that—sometimes too much choice can be overwhelming and you might find yourself using something you hadn’t planned on using or the choice may make you question your decision so eliminate that risk by just having the bits you need. When you practice, make sure to photograph it. Do your makeup and take pictures so you can see how the look is translating, then you can tweak accordingly—I do this with all my brides and I’ll often need to add a touch more blush for example.
Big-day beauty prep, Martin's Chantecaille favourites
Where do you look for beauty inspiration?
I look for beauty inspiration absolutely everywhere! I could be inspired by a picture I see in a magazine, online, a person’s makeup in the queue at the shop, in nature, in art, in fashion… literally everywhere!
Can you tell us about Chantecaille favourites you think are must-haves for brides?
Ooh, Pure Rosewater is a bridal must-have for both makeup prep and all day refreshment, as is Lip Potion. And you can’t beat a bit of Liquid Lumière for that ethereal bridal glow.
What beauty items should every bride have in her wedding day clutch?
I always suggest my brides carry lip balm, their lip colour, their blush and a pressed powder for quick, brightening touch ups. Nothing revives a tired face like a little refreshed, hydrated lip and touch of colour on the cheek.
After a long year, brides are looking at hopefully being able to have in-person weddings again—hooray! What do you think we'll see in terms of trends?
I wonder after this last year if more intimate weddings may be here to stay with people recognising that their nearest and dearest may make for the best day? In terms of bridal beauty, I really hope that brides have been able to be inspired during lockdown to really research makeup and the best bridal makeup practices and feel confident thanks to the wealth of advice online when it comes to doing their makeup themselves.