FAQ : Wedding Photographer Makeup


My mother was a stay-at-home mom, homeschooled five children, and planned field trips according to bus routes that ran from our home to Downtown Los Angeles and back in time for dinner. She was like Super Woman with a clipboard, but instead of a cape, she donned pink sweatpants (a fashion indiscretion we’d like to forget). In the little downtime she had, my mother took part-time jobs to help my dad pay the bills. One of these jobs was selling makeup and skin care at parties.

When my mother received her instructor kit’s filled with 85,823 eye shadows, she practiced applying on my 10-year-old face. Go ahead, judge. All I knew was the time my mom spent applying rouge to my cheeks and gloss to my lips were some of my favorite childhood memories.

Perhaps she instilled a love for makeup at a young age and it’s gotten worse better through the years. When I get gussied up for work, I wear makeup. In 85,823 shades. However, being a photographer isn’t all that glamorous. There’s usually heat, sweat, and stress involved with photographing a wedding and for a while it looked like I washed my face in Crisco at the end of a long night. It was bad.

Six and a half years into shooting weddings and I finally found a mix of products that keep my make up on and not smudged on the back of my camera. Amen.

A few months ago, I was melting in Miami Beach and I couldn’t keep makeup on my face if I had gone to Home Depot and had it professionally painted on. I walked into Sephora and this Cuban in white pants and an unbuttoned shirt told me this was like Botox in a bottle…and I trusted him?! Makeup Forever’s All Mat basically acts as a primer before I put on any makeup and mattes my skin (I use this instead of lotion).

After I use my dual-fix compact from MAC, I use the MAC Prep + Prime Eye before I put on my eyeshadow. This seals my lid and locks in the eye shadow until the end of the evening…love it.

Once I finish applying all my makeup, I use two sprays of MAC’s Fix+ Brume Fixante, which seals everything in place.

So, yup. Those are my three favorite makeup tricks to keep my makeup in place after lonnnng days photographing a wedding. I feel a little foolish blogging about this girlie stuff, but I simply thought I’d share because it’d make Rue Paul proud.

Happy Tuesday!

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  1. Danielle

    October 2nd, 2012 at 2:18 pm

    Love this post!!!

  2. Dallas Curow

    October 2nd, 2012 at 2:35 pm

    Prep + Prime eye is the best! Have you tried using a little under your eye along your lower lashline to lock that eyeliner in place too? Works like a charm 🙂

  3. Nichole Poirier

    October 2nd, 2012 at 3:23 pm

    Thank you thank you thank you! I go weddings with no make up so it won’t run down my face, but would love to get s bit dolled up and look more profesh. THANKS!

  4. Kathryn Grace

    October 2nd, 2012 at 3:24 pm

    Hurray for homeschooled photographers! 🙂

  5. Whitney Lane Arnett

    October 2nd, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    Love that you blogged this! I always leave for weddings feeling like a rock star but by the end of the night it scares me when I look into a bathroom mirror!

  6. Emily

    October 2nd, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    I love this girlie post! I’m going to have to try these. Thanks for the tips!

  7. Retha

    October 2nd, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    Love MAC’s Fix+, and it smells so good!

  8. Megan

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:12 pm

    What about smudge free mascara? That’s my biggest problem!

  9. t.j. max photography

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    This is EXCELLENT advise! I have also found the new L’Oreal Infallible Eye Shadow to be the first ever to stay in place all day/all night long! And it comes in a bunch of awesome colors. A.MAZE.ING! 🙂 Just thought I’d pass along the tip! Have a great one!

  10. Mary Veterano

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:15 pm

    I love this post, Jasmine! Ugh it’s so true, I swear 90% of the time I probably look like a hot mess at a wedding. That first 10% is only right after I’ve applied my makeup for the day and I’ve shown up and given the bride a hug. It’s all downhill from there.

  11. Angela

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    I’ve been looking for a fix to the same problem. Definitely going to give them a try.Thanks for sharing 🙂

  12. candace

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    thank you for this. you helped a girl out in houston, tx, one of the hardest places to keep makeup on.

  13. brandy burridge

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:38 pm

    any suggestions on mascara? ive been searching FOREVER, for one that won’t leave me with a black eye at the end of the night after shooting.

  14. Stephanie Rose

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:39 pm

    I’m in love with this fabulous blog post! It’s really nice to get advice on other aspects of being a wedding photographer. Totally rockin’ awesome. Thanks for the tips!

  15. Scarleth

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    Thank you for sharing, because everytime I have to do a big event or party, I have to apply something on my face and because my face is so oily by the end of the day if you squeezed it you could make some sort of juice….yuk! So, thanks again!

  16. Nicki O'Hara

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:46 pm

    Don’t feel foolish – you’re a GIRL! You’re supposed to blog about this stuff! I cringe when I show my screen to clients, desperately wiping away smears of foundation. You’re a STAR 😉 x

  17. Christine Brizendine

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:47 pm

    Seriously… you don’t know how much I appreciate this post. I ALWAYS feel like I can’t keep makeup on when I’m shooting!!! After shooting I look like a put my eyeliner on in the dark and my my camera looks like it got a bath in white power. So I’m game for learning any tricks to keep the black streaks across my eyelids and my camera clean! You are the bomb…Holla!

  18. Leah LaMontagne

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:50 pm

    Thanks for sharing this! I live and work in the Las Vegas dessert, and it gets HOT! I have long wanted to figure out how I can wear my makeup throughout a shoot or wedding, instead of my camera wearing it! I will try these!

  19. Lauryn

    October 2nd, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    I have the most trouble with my eye liner staying in place. Does the initial spray take care of that? Or is the the type of eye liner that is causing my problem?

  20. Jennifer Lynn

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    This is the best post I’ve ever read!!! Non-photogs won’t even understand, but I don’t feel like I can wear makeup to work because I spend the whole day rubbing it off of the back of my camera. I can’t wait to try these! You’re the best!!

  21. gretchen eck

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:20 pm

    Awesome you were homeschooled. Great advice too!
    -Homeschooling Mom of four!

  22. Sarah

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:39 pm

    Seriously glad you blogged about this because I’ve been horrified so many times about how bad I look at weddings and I have had no idea what to do about it.

  23. Crystal Trenkle

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:43 pm

    Comment away! A few years ago, on Oprah’s suggestion, I went out and bought Model in a Bottle. It was sticky and heavy and made me feel like a mannequin! I’ll buy anything MAC! And just because you said so…Ima try All Mat!

  24. Vera

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:48 pm

    I’m totally printing this blog post out and running to the mall!

  25. Trude

    October 2nd, 2012 at 5:59 pm

    I’m a makeup addict too! Eyeshadow primer is a daily must for me, I use Too Faced’s version but they’re all pretty comparable. And Fix+ is a wonderful thing, it really does make a difference!! 🙂

  26. Fran Colonna

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:04 pm

    I have to carry a face cloth with me at weddings because I sweat right into my eyes and then can’t see…..I hate it because the makeup comes off on the cloth. I will have to try mac. I am considering going to a tennis shop and buying a sweat band to where across my forehead, under my bangs just to keep the sweat from pouring down my face….

  27. Ruth Yoder

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:11 pm

    Thank you for the info!! great to know!

  28. Paula Franco PHOTOGRAPHY

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:33 pm

    I decide tones of times no to make up to photograph each saturday wedding, because the disaster behind the camera is so notorious, but your tips can be very helpful!! Thanks a lot Jasmine!!

  29. Linda

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:40 pm

    Thanks for sharing! Always love people’s makeup advice 🙂 I swear by Urban Decay Primer Potion for all-day eye makeup staying power and Prestige automatic eyeliner.

  30. ML Pipes

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:47 pm

    Jasmine, you are not being foolish… girlie girls like me, need to know this stuff. One of my major insecurities is how I look during a shoot because I’m not a natural beauty…I NEED makeup…
    Thanks so much….

  31. Ashley Williard

    October 2nd, 2012 at 6:53 pm

    Thank you so much! I’ve been toying with the thought of not even wearing makeup for my sessions (think LARGE sunglasses), just because it’s all gone in a couple hours. Definitely going to check these out.

  32. Lily Hernandez

    October 2nd, 2012 at 7:05 pm

    Thank you for sharing, I love this 😉

  33. Carissa

    October 2nd, 2012 at 7:12 pm

    Oh my gosh. I literally just got home from a wedding this past weekend, looked in the mirror, and decided it was time to get my wedding makeup situation fixed. And fast. This is sooo perfect. Thank you!!! You might have felt foolish blogging it, but I appreciate it a ton! 🙂

  34. Jaimie Krause

    October 2nd, 2012 at 7:25 pm

    I’m so glad you posted about this! I melt during summer weddings, and I LOOK so bad that people are continuously asking me if I’m alright! I’ve tried multiple things, but none have worked. I’ll definitely be making a visit to Sephora soon!

  35. sarah danaher

    October 2nd, 2012 at 7:54 pm

    you KNOW that every single female photographer has wanted to know your secret here for ever. thanks for sharing!

  36. Brittani

    October 2nd, 2012 at 8:16 pm

    lmao, please.. no need to feel foolish, giirrll!! This is straight up what a lot of us need… I know I do.. thanks! <3 (i’m a hot mess on shoot days!!)

  37. Sydni Jackson

    October 2nd, 2012 at 10:58 pm

    gotta love primer…i use Arbonne

  38. Jenn Best

    October 2nd, 2012 at 11:02 pm

    THANK YOU for the makeup love. I haven’t worn makeup while shooting in Forever for the very reason that it’s not on my face by the end of the night and my mascara makes me look like racoon. Would love to look more presentable though so this is fabu!

  39. Sarah Patch

    October 3rd, 2012 at 12:10 am

    Agree on the face primer! MUFE All Mat is amazing. Here are some options I like for the other products:

    Setting powder: Make Up For Ever HD Microfinish Powder
    Setting spray: Urban Decay All Nighter
    Eye primer: Urban Decay Eyeshadow Primer Potion

  40. Ashley Goodwin

    October 3rd, 2012 at 12:30 am

    Seriously? SERIOUSLY!?!?! While I am in search of beachy perfume YOU are buying this secret weapon?!!? JUST WHAT I NEEDED! 🙂 Thanks for sharing your trick…7 MONTHS LATER! 😉 No, but for realz, just what I needed. Not another trip to Sephora…but these products.

  41. Wedding Snapper

    October 3rd, 2012 at 1:48 am

    Make up just doesn’t suit me!

  42. LEOLAK

    October 3rd, 2012 at 1:50 am

    Just in time for my makeup shopping trip!!! Thanks for sharing the awesome secrets!

  43. Allison Marie

    October 3rd, 2012 at 3:41 am

    SO good to know! Thank you for the tips! I’m always embarrassed when I look in the mirror after I shoot a wedding, so this is super helpful 🙂

  44. RENAE

    October 3rd, 2012 at 6:18 am

    I have always wanted to ask you about makeup tips but was too shy to ask…so thank you for reading my mind 🙂 You are totally awesome AND psychic! lol

  45. Jolynn

    October 3rd, 2012 at 7:27 am

    Yes!! Thanks for the awesome tips!

  46. Rebecca Nash

    October 3rd, 2012 at 11:17 am

    Thank you so much for sharing this Jasmine! This is always an issue for me – by a couple hours in my makeup is all over the back of my camera and all down my face. Lately I’ve completely cut back to lipgloss and waterproof mascara only. I’m definitely going to look into these products.

  47. Leslie

    October 3rd, 2012 at 7:56 pm

    I so almost asked about this while on the PASS tour!!! ha! I had always ended up looking like a homely rat by the time the ceremony began …. but found the combo that works for me now! – MAC primer + MAC tinted moisturizer + MAC studio fix = natural look that still is on when I leave …. SWEEEET!

  48. Mary

    October 3rd, 2012 at 8:08 pm

    Thanks so much for sharing the tips Jasmine! This will come in handy for sure.

  49. keely aka LKP

    October 3rd, 2012 at 8:24 pm

    thank you for these tips! seriously love good skin care advice, and since no specific shades were mentioned here + all 3 tips leave the face drenched in healthy? well i’ll call it skincare. healthy face + beautiful make-up. that’s all there is to it. thanks again!

  50. Ashley Christine

    October 4th, 2012 at 4:38 am

    I SO needed this!

  51. Monika Greenaway

    October 4th, 2012 at 7:54 am

    This is so great. I just got Bare Essentials eye primer and I am sooo in love I can’t believe I didn’t use an eye primer before. So I am definitely going to look into these products for face primer and a setting spray. Thanks!

  52. Denise Karis

    October 5th, 2012 at 6:46 am

    I got all three today for a wedding Saturday. I’ll let you know how it goes 😛 Im in AZ so its like 100 degrees 🙁

  53. Rachel

    October 6th, 2012 at 1:21 am

    Okay, shopping at MAC day before wedding = take all my money. But I have successfully procured MAC Prep + Prime Skin (My local Sephora had never heard of All Mat), Prep + Prime Eye, Fix+, and Studio Fix Foundation/Powder. And a new blush (Dainty) for good measure. I’ve never worn this much makeup in my life. Tomorrow shall be the test, may the force be with me.

  54. Amanda Marie Photography

    October 6th, 2012 at 5:48 am

    I don’t wear foundation. It always looks chalky and I am too cheap to buy it for more than $10 lol. Luckily I don’t really need it. The area I would have wanted it to cover up (wrinkles on forehead) can’t be covered with makeup anyways so I just cut bangs. Perfect. I need help with eye makeup. Any advice there? 😉

  55. Denise Karis

    October 7th, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    it worked REALLY WELL! 🙂 Thank you! Now I just need something to make my face not turn super red 🙁 I couldnt help but think (When looking through some of the portraits last night) "Jasmine Star would be proud." 😛

  56. Falcon

    October 8th, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    Thanks for sharing these tips! Something that has been a LIFESAVER for me especially when shooting weddings is using a translucent LOOSE powder to set foundation (with a powder puff). Eye primers really do wonders too 🙂

  57. Ashley Goodwin

    November 17th, 2012 at 11:24 pm

    I went out in search of some of these products and wound up spending so much at Sephora they upgraded my VIB status to a new silver card.

  58. Joanna Carina

    June 10th, 2015 at 9:17 pm

    You may feel foolish for blogging about it, but I guarantee you just made a whole bunch of other people feel more confident during their long, sweaty summer weddings! So thank you!

  59. Calgary wedding photographers

    July 5th, 2015 at 1:12 pm

    Revisited this after a week of scorching weather. Running off to MAC this week 🙂