Bridal Makeup For Dark Skin Looks: ULTIMATE 2023 GUIDE

Bridal makeup for dark skin looks: ULTIMATE 2023 GUIDE

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Are you a soon-to-be bride of color looking for bridal makeup ideas? Look no further! We’re here to share with you some inspiring bridal makeup for dark skin looks that will take your breath away.

Darker skin tones provide a stunning canvas for beautiful, classic looks that will make you shine on your special day. From luminous highlights to intense smoky eyes, there are plenty of options out there for creating an unforgettable bridal makeup look.

Here’s a round-up of some gorgeous inspiration for dark-skinned brides so that you can create the perfect look for your big day!

Stunning bridal makeup for dark skin ideas

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What to look for in a bridal makeup artist as a black woman

Finding the best makeup artist for your wedding day is no easy task (I say this from experience!). With so many different professionals available, it can be difficult to find the right one for you and your special day.

Fortunately, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you narrow down your search and make sure you get the perfect look for your big day.

The first tip is to do your research. Start by looking through local directories and searching online for makeup artists in your area. You can look on Instagram by looking up hashtags (i.e. #TampaMakeupArtist, search on google, yelp, Google reviews, Facebook and even sites like StyleSeat).

Be sure to read reviews from past customers and check out portfolios of their work, so you can get a feel for the style of makeup they specialize in.

Once you’ve narrowed down your options, contact each makeup artist to discuss your vision and ask any questions you may have.

When inquiring about makeup artistry, details you should include:

  • Wedding date: (to ensure the MUA is available)
  • Wedding location (to ensure the MUA can come)
  • Number of people who will need their makeup done including bridal party (to ensure the MUA can accommodate)
  • Time of wedding (again, to ensure they can accommodate)
  • If you prefer they come and leave or stay for touch-ups (some MUA offer this for an additional charge)

The next step is to book a trial session. This is an important part of the process, as it gives you a chance to work with the makeup artist and make sure they can create exactly what you’re looking for.

When I was a makeup artist, a trial was required for me to do the Bride’s makeup because is trial is extremely important! Do not skip it!

Make sure that the makeup artist comes prepared and brings a variety of products to your trial. During the session, you should get an idea for their level of professionalism, as well as how comfortable you feel with them.

Once you’ve found the right makeup artist for your special day, it’s time to book them. Be sure to discuss all pricing details, including the cost of a trial session, and make sure you understand exactly what’s included in your package. It’s also important to confirm how far in advance you need to book them for your wedding day.

Booking the perfect makeup artist for your wedding day takes a bit of effort, but it can be well worth it in the end.

With these tips, you can make sure that your special day is everything you dreamed of and more. All you need to do is allocate enough time to research and book the right makeup artist for your needs.

My bridal makeup story

I got married in late 2021, and it was one of the most stressed-out times of my life. Besides getting married during a pandemic, our wedding planner also stood us up twice (she was fired, and we had to hire a new wedding planner a few months prior!), we went over budget, and I could not find a makeup artist whose work I loved on me.


Everyone kept saying to hire a makeup artist for my big day, and I spent over $200 on makeup trials. Plus, I must have written 30+ MUA, and 50% of them I did not get a response back from. Weddings are already stressful, and finding an MUA was making it even more stressful. Whew, it was rough, girl.

So I did my own makeup for my wedding.

WAIT! Before you start declaring to the world that you’re doing your own makeup, let me first say that I was a wedding makeup artist for 5+ years. I had the experience, and I realized during all the many makeup trials that nobody does my makeup like me and the way I like it.

Despite everyone telling me to hire a makeup artist and trying to pressure me to hire an MUA whose work I didn’t like on me, I did my own makeup, and I’m so happy I did.

I did my own makeup for my wedding and I have zero regrets about it.

Before I share how to do bridal makeup, let me say to do what works best for you. If hiring a makeup artist works best for you, by all means, please do it! As someone who has been a bridal makeup artist for years, hire professionals if you can’t achieve the look you want or will be too nervous on your wedding day to do it yourself.

I did my own makeup despite everyone around me saying not to (because they said I would be too nervous on my big day), and I’m so happy I listened to my inner voice. I absolutely LOVED my wedding makeup, and I had so much fun doing it.

Your face is your face. Your wedding is your wedding. As long as you feel beautiful on your wedding day, who cares what others have to say? (I mean its important that your spouse thinks you’re beautiful too but they wouldn’t be with you if they didn’t think you weren’t, so again, do what works best for you, boo!)

Here are some photos of my makeup (Left to right) from my engagement shoot, wedding shower, and wedding. I did my makeup for all three looks:

engagement photos makeup for dark skin
engagement photos makeup for dark skin

Weddings are stressful (and expensive enough). On your wedding day, you should feel beautiful. It’s seriously your big day! If you feel your most beautiful with simple makeup, do it. If you prefer total glam, do that.

My biggest advice is don’t allow anyone to tell you how you should and shouldn’t look on your wedding day. Don’t allow anyone to tell you what you should and shouldn’t do on your big day.

I did my own makeup, despite what others said, and I’m glad I listened to ME. I felt absolutely beautiful on my wedding day, and that’s the most important thing.

bridal makeup for dark skin

How to do bridal makeup for dark skin

Makeup is such an integral part of every wedding, and it can be especially important for dark skin tones. There are myriad amazing things we love about having darker complexions, but finding the perfect makeup look on your big day requires understanding the nuances in the foundation, concealer, blush, eyeliner, and more – all tailored around celebrating your beauty and complexion!

Here are some tips and tricks so you can prep like a pro and have a flawless face for your wedding (or bride if you’re a makeup artist). Keep reading to learn how you can pull off stunning bridal makeup looks if you have a darker skin tone!

Oh, and if you’re completely brand new to makeup, check out my article on the steps to do a full face of makeup.


Natural bridal makeup

Natural bridal makeup for dark skin often requires a different approach than those on lighter skin.

For example, a lighter skin tone would use pastel pinks for blush. However, darker skin tones don’t blush a shade of baby pink (it would make us look ashy). Darker skin tones require a blush that is deeper shade such as a burnt orange or cranberry blush.

This is just one example and the reason why with a darker skin tone, you MUST follow tutorials for shades and complexions that are similar to you so that you can look beautiful and not like a clown.

The key to achieving a natural look when doing makeup for darker skin tones lies in using products that are pigmented and formulated specifically for deeper skin tones.

Having a good quality foundation is also essential when doing a natural makeup on darker skin. The goal should be to even out the complexion without looking cakey or mask-like, so look for water-based foundations that are lightweight and not too matte if you want a natural look.

Three of my favorite foundations for dark skin tones is Fenty beauty foundation, too-face born this way foundation, and Nars natural radiant foundation (what I used on my wedding day).

engagement photos makeup for dark skin
Get this foundation at: Sephora | Amazon
engagement photos makeup for dark skin
Get this foundation at: Sephora
Get this foundation at: Sephora | Amazon


Once you have your foundation on, it’s time to add depth with contouring, highlighting, and a light bronzer. Contour powders or creams that are formulated for dark skin tones should be used to ensure they don’t look ashy or muddy.

Why contour? Well, while foundation does even out your skin tone, it can also make you look “flat” and your face one-dimensional.

By adding a contour, you’re adding dimensional back into your face. Just make sure not to go too heavy. You a light hand, boo.

Highlight the face with a gold-toned highlighter to add a glow, and then finish off with some bronzer.

Adding blush is also essential, as it will bring life back into your complexion. As mentioned earlier, burnt orange and cranberry shades of blush work best for darker skin tones.

Get this at: Sephora

Finally, for eyeshadow, you can go natural and subtle with colors that compliment your complexion for a natural bridal look. I recommend a champagne or soft pink eyeshadow color.

I also recommend opting for false eyelashes to really make your eyes POP. If you’re not a pro with false, try magnetic lashes or get lash extensions prior to your wedding.

Get this at: Sephora  | Shop more on Amazon

These tips should help you have beautiful natural bridal makeup on your big day.

Here’s a tutorial of a simple natural makeup look I do all the time on myself:


Soft-glam bridal makeup

Soft-glam makeup is a look that is tailored to the individual. It combines a touch of glamour with a softer, more natural look. It’s perfect for brides with darker skin tones who want to feel beautiful on their wedding day without looking overly made-up or overbearing.

When done properly, soft-glam makeup can enhance a bride’s natural beauty while still looking polished and elegant.

The key to achieving the perfect soft-glam look is to focus on the eyes, lips, and skin. For darker skin tones, it’s important to use makeup that is pigmented enough to show up against the skin without appearing too heavy or harsh.

Start with a hydrating primer to create a smooth base, followed by foundation and concealer for even coverage. You can use bronzer to provide subtle contouring and add warmth to the skin.

Get this at: Sephora
Get this at: Sephora
Get this at: Sephora

Highlighter can also be used sparingly on the cheekbones, bridge of the nose, and cupid’s bow for a subtle dewy glow.

For eyeshadow, use shimmer shades or neutrals that will show up well against the skin and add a touch of glam. Soft-matte browns and warm taupes are flattering for darker skin tones, as they provide definition without looking overdone.

Champagne, golds, and soft pinks also look beautiful on darker skin tones and make you look more eye. One of my favorite eyeshadow palettes (that I also used on my wedding day) was the Huda palette because it has so many soft glam shades PLUS the eyeshadows actually show up on our dark skin tone.

Finding eyeshadows that show up on our darker skin tone can be challenging, but Huda beauty eyeshadows do, which is why it’s one of my favorite beauty brands.

Get this at: Sephora | Amazon

Finish off the look with a neutral lip color in either a matte or glossy finish or a neutral lipstick, and you’ll have an effortlessly glamorous look that won’t overpower your natural beauty.

By taking the time to find the right makeup shades that complement darker skin tones, you can create a soft-glam look that will look beautiful in photos and make you feel confident on your special day.

Here’s a black bridal makeup tutorial you can do:


Dramatic bridal makeup

Dramatic bridal makeup is a beautiful and bold style designed to bring out the best features of a bride with dark skin. This look emphasizes the eyes, cheeks, lips, and other facial features, creating a stunning and eye-catching transformation for the bride on her big day.

To create this look, you’ll need to use an array of products for dark skin tones, including foundation, highlighters, contours, eyeliner, and bold eyeshadows.

Start off with primer to help improve the longevity of your makeup and provide an even canvas to start.

Foundation is the second step in creating dramatic bridal makeup; choose a foundation that matches your natural skin tone as closely as possible to create an even base.

Once you’ve applied your foundation, it’s time to get ready for dramatic eye makeup. Use an eyeshadow primer to create a smooth base for the rest of your look. This will help the makeup last longer and prevent any creasing or smudging throughout the day.

Get this at: Sephora | Amazon

For a dramatic look, you can use any eyeshadow color of your choice. However, a classic look, usually consist of brown and gold shades that will make your eyes pop.

To add some extra glamour, apply a thin line of black eyeliner or liquid liner to the lash line, and you absolutely have to rock fake lashes. For a bold look, it’s all about the eyes and false lashes are the icing on the cake of a beautiful eye look.

For dark skin tones, it’s important to use products that will truly stand out. Whether you choose to add some glitter or a bold color, be sure to select shades that flatter your skin tone and enhance the natural beauty of your eyes.

My absolute favorite eyeshadow palette at the moment for bold and gorgeous eye looks is the Pretty rich palette by Too faced. This palette includes matte, shimmer and glitter colors so you can literally use one palette for your entire look.

Get this at: Sephora | Amazon

If you’re looking to go super bold and colorful on your wedding day, you absolutely cannot go wrong with Pat McGrath’s eyeshadow palettes! Her eyeshadows are seriously the best quality and super pigmented. Plus, she’s a black woman, so you’re supporting a sista!

Get this at: Sephora


For lips, you can go neutral or bold like a red lip. It’s seriously up to you and what makes you feel the most beautiful!

If you’re into bold looks, here is a bridal makeup for black skin that features a bold cut-crease:

Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel for more makeup and beauty looks!


Tips if You’re Doing Your Own Wedding Day Makeup (here are my tips from someone who did!)

As a bride who did her own makeup for her wedding day (and a retired wedding makeup artist), Here are my tips when it comes to makeup on your big day!


Find an inspiration photo.

Look through photos of bridal makeup (which you’re already doing if you’re on this page so good job, you’re already ahead!). Find photos of makeup looks you like. From there, gather up all the makeup products you need.

For example, if you decide you want to rock a gold shimmer cut crease on your wedding day, make sure you have gold eyeshadow and the appropriate makeup products.

Here’s a list of makeup products you’ll need:

  • Primer
  • Foundation
  • Concealer
  • Highlight
  • Eyebrow pencil or gel
  • Eyeshadow
  • Eyeliner (liquid, pencil or gel)
  • Lip product (lip gloss, lipstick, or lip stain)
  • Setting spray
  • Optional (but HIGHLY recommended) False lashes
  • Optional: Setting powder
  • Optional: Contouring product

Unsure what these products are for? Get my makeup guide for FREE when you join my email list here.

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I must of practiced my makeup look at least 8 things and I did makeup professionally. Please don’t wait until your big day to do your makeup for the first time.

Practice doing your makeup multiple times until you perfect the look you want. Additionally, take pics of the products you used and your complete look so on your big day, you can use it as a reference.


Wear the makeup all day

When you practice your makeup, be sure to wear it all day to see how it looks after a few hours. Some foundations oxidize (meaning it mixes with the natural oils from your skin and changes colors) so you want to make your foundation doesn’t oxidize or your eyeshadow doesn’t crease up after 30 minutes.

That way on your big day, you’re prepared and have corrected anything that could go wrong with your makeup look

Invest in high-quality makeup

Note: High-quality makeup and expensive makeup are not the same thing, although higher-quality makeup does seem to cost more.

Investing in high-quality makeup is essential for achieving a flawless, long-lasting look for your wedding day. The right products will help your makeup stay on all day, but more importantly, they’ll give you a gorgeous canvas to work with so you can feel beautiful and confident in any photos of your big day.

The best place to shop for your wedding makeup is a professional makeup store, such as Sephora or Ulta. There, you can find the latest products from brands like Nars, MAC Cosmetics and Pat McGrath.

Makeup goes on your face, your wedding is a big day. Therefore don’t go cheap with the makeup products.


Give yourself time on your big day (and set the mood!)

When I did my makeup for my big day, I put my phone on DND (do not disturb). In fact, I had all of my calls forwarded to my Maid of honor and set the boundary to NOT call me on my wedding (I don’t need the stress of calls asking where’s the wedding venue. My wedding planner or bridal party can answer that).

On my big day, I went to the bathroom and carved out two hours to do my makeup. Ample time for me.

I played uplifting music (*ahem* Beyonce and Kelly Rowland albums)

I lit a soy candle that smelt heavenly.

I wore a beautiful silk luxurious white silk robe and comfy grey houseshoes.

Get this on: Etsy

I felt amazing, and then I did my makeup.

I was relaxed doing my makeup and had a blast. I set a relaxing atmosphere, and it worked.

bridal makeup for dark skin


Bridal Makeup Tips and Tricks For Every Bride-to-Be

Every bride-to-be wants to look her best on her special day, which is why getting the perfect bridal makeup look is essential for creating beautiful memories that will last a lifetime. There are many tips and tricks that can help enhance one’s natural beauty and create a stunning look for the wedding.


Have a makeup touch up kit

Having a touch-up kit ready and available throughout the celebration can make all the difference in keeping you looking your best.

Here’s what you should include in it:

1. Setting Spray:

A good setting spray is essential for keeping your makeup looking perfect all night long. Be sure to bring one that you’ve tested and trust to help lock in your makeup look even after hours of dancing and celebration.

2. Translucent Powder:

To keep unwanted shine away, a pressed or loose translucent powder is a must. It’s also an ideal product for touchups throughout the night and can help keep your makeup looking fresh.

3. Lipstick/Gloss:

Keep your lips looking hydrated and glossy with a long-lasting formula that won’t fade after eating or drinking. Bring along a few shades of your favorite to ensure you look perfect in any lighting.

4. Blush/Bronzer:

For an instant flush and glow, bring along a light blush or bronzer. This will help to add color and life back into the skin after hours of celebration.

5. Makeup Remover Wipes:

Throughout the night, you may need to take off or add small bits of makeup. Makeup remover wipes are perfect for this and can be used on any part of the face to ensure everything is even and blended correctly.

Having all these items with you will make sure your wedding day look remains flawless no matter how many hours you’

bridal makeup for dark skin

Frequently asked questions: bridal makeup for dark skin

Which bridal makeup is best for dark skin?

Finding the best bridal makeup for dark skin can be a tricky task, but thankfully there are some great tips and tricks that can help you to bring out the best of your beautiful dark complexion on your special day!

The most important thing when it comes to dark skin is to opt for makeup products that are specifically designed for darker complexions. Generally, these products are formulated with minerals and other ingredients that help to enhance the unique qualities of dark skin without looking unnatural or cakey.

When selecting a foundation, it’s essential to find one that matches your exact skin tone as closely as possible. You can also consider mixing shades if needed in order to ensure a perfect fit for your complexion.

Another great option for dark-skinned brides is to opt for a bronzer, blusher or highlighter that has a gold shimmery finish. These products will help to brighten up your face and bring out the contours of your features, while adding an extra bit of sparkle at the same time! When applying these products, be sure to use a light hand and blend well in order to avoid any harsh lines.

For the eyes, dark-skinned brides can choose vibrant colors like bright blues, greens or purples that will help make them stand out against their skin tone. Metallic eye shadows are also a great choice as they add subtle shimmer and depth to your look.

Lastly, a beautiful lip color is always a great way to finish off your bridal makeup. For dark-skin tones, try choosing shades of mauve or berry that will flatter your complexion while still making a statement.


Which type of makeup is best for bridal?

When it comes to makeup for bridal, there are many options and looks that can be achieved. However, the most important thing is to choose makeup that will look best on YOU and make you feel beautiful as a bride.

To ensure a flawless classic look, it is recommended to go with a natural makeup look that enhances the natural beauty of the bride. However, it’s your big day and you can always opt for bold and bright colors too if that’s your thing.

A neutral-colored eyeshadow palette, such as muted browns and taupes, is a great choice for bridal makeup.

This softens the look while still providing definition and color to the eyes. A burnt orange, cranberry, or deep pink blush shade brings out the cheekbones without looking too heavy or unnatural for darker skin tones.

False lashes can also be used to add length and volume to the lashes, creating a more dramatic look. However, it is important to make sure that they are applied correctly and evenly.

The choice of eyeliner can be used to further enhance the eyes, with liquid liner providing the most precision and staying power.

When it comes to what type of makeup is best for bridal, it’s whatever makes the bride feel the most beautiful and confident.

Should I hire someone to do my wedding makeup?

Should you hire someone to do your wedding makeup? Depending on your individual needs and preferences, this decision will ultimately be up to you.

There are both pros and cons that come with hiring a professional makeup artist for your wedding day.

The main benefit of hiring a makeup artist is that you can rest assured knowing that your bridal look will be flawless. Makeup artists have the skills and experience necessary to create a stunning look, no matter what your desired style is.

They can also save you time on your wedding day by being able to quickly complete the application process without having to worry about any mistakes or do-overs. Additionally, they may have access to higher-end products that you may not have access to, which can give your look an extra special touch.

On the other hand, hiring a makeup artist can be expensive and require additional time at the venue if they will be applying makeup onsite.

Additionally, there are no guarantees that the desired look will turn out as expected so it’s important to communicate your vision clearly and do a trial run prior to the wedding day.

Ultimately, whether or not you decide to hire a makeup artist is up to your individual preferences and budget.

If you are looking for someone who can quickly create an amazing look that will last throughout the entire day, hiring a professional may be the perfect solution. However, if you feel comfortable doing your own makeup or on a tight budget, then it may be best to go the route of doing your own makeup.

No matter what you decide, it’s important to take the time to consider all of your options before making a final decision.


How long before the wedding should you get your makeup done?

It is recommended that makeup should be done at least 2 to 3 hours before your wedding ceremony. This allows enough time to get dressed, take photos, get your hair done and have a few last-minute touch-ups before the ceremony begins.


Why do makeup artists charge more for weddings?

Makeup artists usually charge more for weddings because of the special attention needed. For a wedding, the bride and bridal party will typically require a more intricate and detailed makeup look that may take longer to achieve.

Additionally, many brides want to trial different looks before deciding on a specific one for the big day, which requires extra time from the makeup artist.

On top of the actual makeup application, a wedding usually requires other services, such as hair styling and false lash application, which can also increase the total cost.

Is it possible to do your own wedding makeup?

Yes! While professional wedding makeup artists can provide a flawless finish, doing your own makeup is a great way to save money and ensure that the look is exactly what you want.

I did my own makeup for my wedding, and I don’t regret it at all.

Just be sure to practice beforehand so you know what techniques to use and how much makeup to wear.


bridal makeup for dark skin
Whether you’re looking for a natural look or something more dramatic, here is a roundup of bridal makeup for dark skin looks (as well as how to achieve the looks). I hope you enjoyed these black bride makeup ideas!

If you have any questions about how to achieve these looks, don’t hesitate to reach out with a comment below.
And be sure to subscribe to my beauty channel; I add new makeup tutorials all the time! In the meantime, which is your favorite makeup look? Let me know in the comments.

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