South Indian Bridal Makeup: Essential Tips For Smart Women!


Indian bridal sarees

South Indian bridal makeup is a stressful affair

South Indian bridal makeup is a high-stakes, stressful experience.

Putting on the bridal makeup can test your patience and requires a lot of effort, help and sacrifices to pull off the right look on your wedding day. A lot depends on the experience and the skill of the makeup artist you may have hired.

Traditions dictate that you wear accessories and dresses in a way that is not always easy to pull off. Ever tried wearing the madisar saree and sit in front of the raging holy fire with all your makeup on?

If you picked the wrong makeup artist, you may be confronting last minute cancellation or a replacement artists who you did not sign up for in the first place.

A mysterious insect bite on your face the day before the wedding? Check. Often the bride and her family end up staying at the wedding venue a day or two before the event and you end up sleeping in a room that’s been rented out to other unwanted “guests”.

With all the craziness around you, you might miss your daily 2beauty routines and end up using new makeup products for the D-day! Now that’s a risky proposition and the outcome may not always be desirable.

That’s not all. Anything can go wrong for the bride in the days preceding the wedding adding to the stress and lack of sleep. This, in turn, makes you prone to committing more makeup mistakes! It’s a vicious circle that can be easily broken.

But don’t worry. We put together a comprehensive article to help you smartly tackle the south Indian wedding makeup challenge and blow everyone out of the water with your killer looks.

South Indian bridal makeup looks

South Indian bridal makeup is a broad phrase and can denote bridal makeup looks based on where the bride is from – Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, or Andra Pradesh. Even within a state, there may be significant differences between how bridal makeup is applied depending on the religion or region. For example, the south Indian bridal makeup look for a Malayalee Christian wedding may be dramatically simpler when compared to that of the Tamil Iyer bridal makeup.

Check out the videos of South Indian bridal makeup techniques that provide step by step instructions for different south Indian bridal makeup looks.

Tamil bridal makeup look

Kannada bridal makeup look

Kerala bridal makeup look

Telugu bridal makeup look

The differences in the South Indian bridal makeup looks can also be based on the wedding ceremony. For example, the bridal makeup for engagement or pre-wedding ceremonies is different from that of the makeup for the wedding ceremony (Example: The Muhurtam in Tamil weddings). Of course, reception makeup and attire are completely different as it’s not a religious ceremony.

South Indian bridal makeup: Step by step instructions

No matter what look you are aiming for, follow these step by step instructions (a special shout out to Sathyapriya and her YouTube channel) for crafting a stunning South Indian bridal makeup. Before you apply any makeup, make sure the skin is clean and exfoliated.

Go through the cleansing, toning and moisturising (CTM) routine. Cleansing removes the impurities, toning allows you to remove dead skin and moisturising makes sure your skin remains hydrated and retain its vitality. The CTM routine should be your habit (like brushing teeth) and not something you just do the day before the marriage.

Step 1: Apply PrimerBridal makeup step by step instructions

The primer is the first makeup product you need to touch when you start your south Indian bridal makeup. The primer serves as a base that helps you keep your makeup intact throughout the ceremony and also serves as an elegant way to hide acne and skin creases.

Primer is best applied using the fingertip so that it is evenly applied to all areas of your face. It is important to choose a primer based on your skin type. If you have dry skin choose a hydrating primer while primers that control oil will be best suited for oily skins.

Here are some of the popular primer products available online.

Step 2: Apply colour corrector aka ConcealerBridal makeup step by step instructions

The best strategy to conceal dark circles, pigmentation, acne spots and other blemishes on your skin is to use a concealer. Apply concealer liberally using a brush on the affected areas (if the skin issues are prominent), and use your fingertips to spread the concealer around evenly so that you are left with a flawless base on which you can build your makeup.

You can shop from top rated concealers here.

Step 3: Apply the foundationBridal makeup step by step instructions

A foundation allows you to create a smooth and blank canvas to build your bridal makeup. Apply the foundation on your face and neck so that the makeup blends with your skin and the face doesn’t stand out like a brightly painted doll!

Use your fingertips to apply the foundation cream all your face and neck and use a buffing brush to gently spread the foundation evenly. if you choose the right foundation cream, you can avoid the shiny or dry look.

Click here to choose from a variety of proven foundation products.

Step 4: Apply fixing powderBridal makeup step by step instructions

Fixing powder allows you to create a waterproof base that can withstand sweating and tears (both expected a lot in a south Indian wedding)! Spread the powder gently around the face using a powder brush. There aren’t too many products available in the market, so selecting one should be fairly easy.

Step 5: Apply baking powderBridal makeup step by step instructions

If you are adventurous, the next step would be to apply baking powder to highlight your face in the right areas. Typically baking is applied under the eyes, on your cheekbone, forehead, chin, and bridge of the nose. You need to wait for 15 to 20 minutes for the baking process to complete as the body heat works its magic on the powder. You can spread it evenly to get that highlighted look.

Baking makes your photographs pop even under harsh lights. If you don’t want to do this, you can consider highlighting parts of your face using a highlighter stick.

Click here to explore some the products available online.

Step 6: South Indian bridal eye makeupBridal makeup step by step instructions

Applying eye makeup is probably a critical and delicate step in the south Indian bridal makeup process. Here are a few things you should consider doing:

Start with an eyeshadow all over the crease and above the crease on the eyelids. Choose a colour that is coordinated with the overall attire and look you are going for. Apply multiple shades of the eye shadow from your eyeshadow palette to get a multi-dimensional finish.

Use a light colour from the eye shadow palette to highlight the brow bones and the inner corner of your eyes. Use the back side of the brush for better control.

If you are adventurous, go for advanced techniques such as the half-cut crease on the eyelids.

Apply an appropriate shimmery paint shade on the eyelid if you want that subtle glittery look going.

Now use the baking powder once again on the outer corners of the eyes to get that defined look. This is a simple technique yet has a big impact as it focuses the attention on the highlight on your eyes.

Apply kajal to the top and bottom waterlines of your eyes. Use an eyeliner to create the outline of the shape you want to create and fill the gap with the eyeliner colour. Wrap up the makeup by

Wrap up the makeup by adding mascara to the upper and lower eyelashes. Mascara helps to provide greater detail to your eye and help define your eyes.

Step 7: Bronze up your faceBridal makeup step by step instructions

Use a bronzer to highlight your hairline, cheekbones, neck and jaw. The trick to applying a bronzer is to choose areas that the sun would naturally hit it!

Click here to buy them online.

Step 8: Contouring your faceBridal makeup step by step instructions

Contouring your face using a contouring brush will allow you to define your facial features. It gives the appearance of a higher cheekbone and slimmer chin and nose (considered to be a trademark of a beautiful face).

Check out the contouring products available here.

Step 9: Blush and bakeBridal makeup step by step instructions

One of the last steps involved in applying the south Indian bridal makeup is to use a blush for the cheeks to give that healthy pink look for the bride. Use baking powder under the hollows of your cheeks to enhance the definition of your cheeks even more!

Step 10: Apply a lip liner and a lipstickBridal makeup step by step instructions

Use a lip liner to line and fill in the lips. Then apply the lipstick shade of your choice using a lip brush. Here are some lip liners available online.

South Indian bridal makeup for oval face

South Indian Bridal Makeup
Via Naveen Kadam on Flickr

Oval faces are proportional. The bridal makeup should hence help draw the attention to a specific part of the face.

If you have an oval face, just make sure you decide what will be the focus of your makeup – the eyes or the lips. We recommend you keep the focus on the eyes in order to create a focal point for your face.

In the step by step south Indian bridal makeup tutorial provided above, you will notice that the eyes remain the central focus point for the makeup and the lips barely have anything other than the liner and the muted lipstick. This is a classic south Indian bridal makeup for oval faces.

Don’t go overboard with contouring. The purpose of contouring is to create an appearance of higher cheekbones and slimmer nose and chins. If you already have these qualities, just go easy on contouring.

Don’t forget to use the blush to accentuate your cheeks with shades of pink/red. This technique always works with oval faces!

South Indian bridal makeup for round face

South Indian Bridal Makeup
Via Pee Vee on Flickr

The fundament approach to applying South Indian bridal makeup for round face would be to accentuate the length of the face. This can be accomplished by using one or all of the following tricks.Use a darker shade of lipstick and apply lip gloss to draw the focus to your lips and break the symmetry of your face.

Applying a bronzer face is a great idea if you would like to create an illusion of a sculpted face. Apply the bronzer along the temples, jawline and along the hollows of the cheek.

Don’t mess with your eyebrows if you have round face! Just shape it with minimal editing. Arched eyebrows work well with oval/long faces and is not meant for a bride with a round face.

Go bold with your eye makeup. Specifically, apply a winged line using your eyeliner from the outer edge of the eyes. This will drama to your face and enhance the round look significantly!

South Indian bridal makeup for dark skin – 6 Must Do Tricks

South Indian Bridal Makeup
Via Savio Sebastian on Flickr

If you have dark skin tone, review the following list of best practices to give you that stunning South Indian bridal look.

1. Go bold with colours: Dark skin colour is an asset and not a drawback. That’s because you can apply bright, bold colours that light skinned people cannot use! Bright colours will easily blend with the dark skin and give you a traditional bridal look.

2. Moisturise your face: At least a couple of months before the marriage, start the daily moisturising routine. Dark skin doesn’t look good when it is dry.

3. Choose the right foundation: Always work with a foundation that matches your skin tone. Never use a light coloured foundation.Match the foundation colour with that of the colour of your face and not with that of your hands. That’s because your face might have a relatively lighter tone than your hands.

4. Concealers are required: Darker skin tones with pigments, patches are dark under eye circles require a liberal application of a concealer that matches your skin tone.

5. Blushes with bold colours: When you use a blush, choose shades of bold colours like orange, coral and rose. These colours work very well with dark skin tones.

6. Use light eyeshadow: When you use a white eye shadow under the arch of your eyebrows, it creates an appearance of bigger eyes which is always good for a bride.

Do you have a wheatish complexion? We put together exclusive makeup tips for women with wheatish complexion! Click here to read more.

South Indian bridal makeup for reception

South Indian Wedding Makeup
Via Ryan Smith Photography

The wedding reception is not a ceremonial or traditional event in South Indian marriages. However, it has become a must-have event in all modern weddings in India.

The reception provides an opportunity for the bride to put on a makeup that may not conform to any traditional look. For example, some South Indian brides dress up in a north Indian attire, such as the lehenga or Anarkali suit, and all makeup and accessories are aligned to this style.

Not a fan of North Indian attire, how about a Cinderella look or a designer wear? In a way, the South Indian bride treats the reception as an opportunity to go beyond traditional outfits and makeup and try something new and adventurous.

Here is one such simple, elegant and classy reception look applicable for any Indian bride.

As you can see the makeup you choose for the south Indian wedding reception would depend on the look you are aiming for and the attire. Of course, your skin tone, type of skin, the shape of your face all play a role in the choice of the makeup. That leads us to the set of essential tips for South Indian bridal makeup.

Want to see a typical south Indian bridal makeup for the engagement ceremony? Click here to see a video demonstration.Dotted Line

Female body shapes
Click here to read about choosing the right dress for your body shape.

24 Points checklist for south Indian bridal makeup

South Indian Bridal Makeup
Via REBEL on Flickr

We put together all the important dos and don’ts to help you have a stress-free and wonderful experience in transforming your looks for your South Indian wedding:

Choosing the right makeup artist for your wedding

1. Pick a makeup artist based on your budget and their availability. If they are too busy to respond to your inquiry, find someone who is responsive.
2. Most wedding portals have compiled a list of top South Indian Bridal makeup artists. These lists could be a great starting point.
3. Let the makeup artist see your engagement, wedding and reception sarees at least 1 week before the wedding day.
4. Discuss the looks you are aiming for keeping in mind the traditions your family expects you to follow.
5. Don’t be shy asking for references from other customers.
6. Stick to classic makeup styles based on your family tradition. Keep the trendy makeup fads to the reception. Don’t let the makeup artist hijack your style!
7. Ask for a trial session before the wedding. This will give you enough ideas to get your makeup right on the big day.

Using the right makeup products

8. Let the makeup artist know about your skin type. Example, if you have a dry skin, make sure you use oil-based products.
9. Find out if the makeup artist has products that suit your skin type!
10. Pick the right shades of all the products you will be using. If your face is of a lighter skin tone, match the product to your face and your hands!
11. Use golden toned concealers as they help you look better in photos and videos.
12. Avoid products with SPF for your wedding makeup. You won’t go out in the sun anyways and photos under bright lights don’t look good if you use SPF.

Makeup application tips for your wedding

13. Don’t do waxing or facials just before your wedding day. Stick to the CTM routine and nothing else for at least 1 week before the wedding.
14. Apply the products on our neck as well so that your face doesn’t stick out and ruin the effort that went into the makeup.
15. Use waterproof makeup products for Indian wedding makeup. The heat and the emotions can wash away your makeup otherwise.
16. Your face shape dictates where you will use bold colours. For example, if you have a round face, highlight your lips and stylise your eyes.
17. Don’t forget your hands and nails. Remove excessive hair from the hands and give it the same care and attention you give to your face.
18. Don’t forget to condition your hair and scalp with ayurvedic oils.
19. If you want to colour your hair, start the colouring routine two or 3-months before the big day and do it in a 5 to 6-week intervals.

Taking care of yourself

20. If possible, start eating healthy a few months before your wedding. Avoid fried and fatty foods.
21. Get plenty of sleep to avoid the dark circles under your eyes.
22. Get your teeth cleaned and whitened if it has visible yellow stains. You will need to brighten up your smiles in the wedding photos.
23. Get plenty of exercises but don’t try to work yourself to death at the gym. Just enough exercise to keep you feeling good.
24. Finally, don’t run around trying different fairness creams to look fair! Embrace your dark skin tone and choose a makeup style that will accentuate your beauty.

Featured Image via Kamakshi Sachidanandam on Flickr

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South Indian Bridal Sarees


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