Why The Bride Shouldn’t Go Last For Hair + Makeup on the Wedding Day

filed in: Tips for Clients

February 20, 2019

The #1 thing that can ruin a wedding day timeline is if hair + makeup is running behind schedule.  I’m not pointing fingers or anything like that… but the simple fact is that if hair + makeup is running late, everything else that follows in the wedding day timeline will be compromised.  Time is precious on the wedding day, so allocating extra time for potential hiccups is necessary.  Planning ahead and requesting to have things done well ahead of the deadline is ALWAYS a good idea!  This is why it is SO important for you to schedule plenty of time for your hair + makeup team to do their job.  This is also why it’s so important for brides to get their hair + makeup done EARLY in the rotation… because the bride is the most important piece of the wedding day puzzle.

So, I wanted to write this blog post to educate brides, who honestly don’t know any better.  They’ve never done this before and they are looking to us, the professionals, to make good decisions on their behalf.  It is our job as wedding professionals to advise + educate our clients on what is in their best interests.  We do this every weekend, so we see how small things like this can make a big impact on the wedding day.  Here are my top reasons why the bride should NEVER EVER EVER go last for hair + makeup on the wedding day…

  1. The bride is the most important person on the wedding day and we can’t do anything without her.  She needs to get in her dress before anyone else.  She needs to head out for the First Look before anyone else needs to be ready.  She needs to be with her groom for portrait time before anyone else arrives for photos.  Bridesmaids and the mothers have WAY more time to get ready than the bride, because we don’t need them for any important events until after the First Look and bride + groom portraits.  So, the bridesmaids + mothers can be finishing up hair + makeup while we get the bride into her dress and while we’re photographing the bride + groom.  If hair + makeup runs late in this case, it doesn’t matter because the bride is already done and out the door.  The timeline stays intact – everyone is happy and stress-free!  Oh happy day!
  2. If the bride goes last and hair + makeup is running late, brides may not have time to make any changes to their wedding day hair + makeup look once it’s finished.  They may feel pressured to choose between having their hair + makeup perfected or being unhappy with how they look just to stay on schedule.  Brides should never have to make this choice – especially because this is easily prevented with good time management and planning.
  3. Your wedding day hair + makeup should be water-proof, sweat-proof, and able to last all day.  Being done earlier in the rotation won’t compromise the quality of your hair + makeup at all.
  4. Anything we can do to keep everyone on schedule – better yet, AHEAD of schedule – with the wedding day timeline should be a no-brainer.  There are so many vendors involved in this day and if we get behind at the very beginning of the day, we’ll be trying to play catchup all day long.  This creates unnecessary stress on the bride, groom, bridal party, families, photographer, and wedding planner.


In an effort to avoid running late, I have started to tell my bride’s that their hair + makeup should be done 30 minutes earlier than it really needs to be done… just to be safe.  When I arrive on-site on the wedding day, the bride should be finishing up their hair + getting ready to jump into the makeup chair – or vice versa.  At least one service (either hair or makeup) should be finishing up upon our arrival.  If things aren’t moving as anticipated, we will typically try to hurry things along and communicate with the hair + makeup team in a friendly manner, so that we don’t fall behind schedule – but just be sure that you are keeping an eye on the time and starting your services at least 2 hours before you need to be completely done and ready to get into your dress.

So, brides… make sure that you are not the last ones on the list to have your hair + makeup done on your wedding day.  You, plus whoever you want to help you into your wedding dress like your mom, MOH, sister, etc. need to be picture-ready by the time noted on your timeline.  We will do our best to keep you on schedule, but as a general rule, you should be in the chair for either hair or makeup by the time we arrive.  I hope this is helpful!

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