Pull out the girdle and get the rose petals ready – it’s wedding season! But how do you keep your cool during the heart-melting ‘I dos’?
Meet your wedding dream team – celebrity wedding photographer Graham Monro, wedding stylist Ruth Saunders and bridal hair and makeup artist Simona Janek. Here, the wedding pro’s reveal their sweat-proof tricks to make sure your big day goes off without a hitch.
The Celeb Wedding Photographer
Graham Monro, owner of gm photographics, and his team of brilliant photographers are the celeb photographers de jour, having shot Guy and Jules Sebastian’s wedding, Sonia Kruger, Ada Nicodemou, Mark Minichiello, Zoe Stenmark and Lewis Roberts-Thomson and many more five star nuptials. With over 25 years’ experience photographing weddings, Graham’s only too happy to share some of his heat-proof photo tricks and stellar advice…
Allow plenty of time
Who wants to be rushed on their big day? “The best tip I can give for great wedding photography is to allow enough time for photos,” says Graham. “During summer, the best times to take photos is early morning, around 7am, or early evening, from 6-8pm. But the majority of weddings are afternoon ceremonies starting between 2 and 3pm with a 6pm reception. This means you often only have between 4 and 6pm to take the photos – and this includes travel time!”
Avoid location hopping
Unless you have plenty of time, of course. “I suggest two locations that work well at most,” says Graham. “Discuss the locations with your photographer – they can suggest places that have a variety of light. Good photography has variety and you can get lots of variety at two good locations.”
Do a pre-wedding shoot
Okay it’s cheating a bit, but a pre-wedding shoot could give you an entire day to capture those love-oozing shots! If you’re not prepared to reveal ‘The Dress’, you could do a practice run, or ‘engagement shoot’ for a little pose practice.
“A pre-wedding shoot is a great way to feel relaxed with your photographer and get to understand what it’s like in front of a camera,” suggests Graham.
Think outside the square
Get creative with your backdrops and think outside the square, says Graham. “You could hire a cocktail bar, funky shop, restaurant or cafe to have your photos taken at. Alternatively, a shaded, covered area could work well too. Also, make sure you take an esky to the shoot with plenty of ice and water, as well as easy food to eat!”
Call in the pro’s
Experience is everything! “Book good professionals that have experienced weddings in every season,” advises Graham. “Experience means you can work under any conditions and still deliver good quality work. It means your supplier has already learnt the hard lessons of their field and they are not going to use your wedding as a learning curve! And experience means that someone who has been in business a long time will still be there later that year when your wedding is on. An experienced photography company knows how to protect and look after all your digital files now and in the future.”
The Wedding Stylist
Tumbleweed Events specialise in wedding and event styling, coordination and prop hire servicing the Sydney metro and regional areas. And founder and wedding stylist Ruth Saunders has a slew of cool tips to beat hot weather meltdowns …
Throw some shade
“Be aware of the suns positioning in relation to where the guests are sitting – you don’t want them looking directly into the sun,” says Ruth. “If it’s possible, seat guests in shaded areas or alternatively, provide guests with fans or umbrellas for protection. You could even have you ceremony later in the day, when the weather is cooler.”
Layers or frills and tulle may amp the glam factor, but it will also boost your body heat. “Whether you are a bride or a wedding guest, try to choose breathable fabrics such as cotton, chiffon or crepe,” suggests Ruth. “The air will move through the fabrics much more easily and be cooler.”
Avoid wall flowers
Wilted flowers just won’t do. So how do you keep them perky and blooming beautifully when it’s a heat wave? “Choose flowers that hold water, like roses, calla lilies and, orchids,” suggests Ruth. “Stay away from tulips, hydrangeas and stephanotis, which are likely to wilt. Also, refrigerate flowers where possible. If you can’t refrigerate them, sit them in water or at least keep in the shade. For arrangements that are in sunlight and can’t be moved, place a lightweight damp cloth over them until the ceremony.”
But Ruth warns: “Don’t spray flowers with water that are in direct sunlight as the petals will go brown.”
The Hair & Makeup Artist
No bride, or guest, wants their makeup melting off or their hair to have a humidity wig-out mid ceremony. Simona Janek knows a few stay-glam tricks though. As founder of Simona Janek Hair + Make up Artist, Simona has more than 20 years’ experience creating beautiful hair and makeup looks for brides, advertising, tv, magazines and the red carpet. Simona even teaches private makeup lessons so women can amp the glam factor themselves! Here’s her glam-factor guaranteed tricks…
Style your hair-em
Hot, sticky weather usually equals a sleek, stay-put updo. But hey, some brides will want to wear their hair down, and that’s ok. The key is making it weatherproof, and that means no humidity induced frizz outs, dropped curls or flyways. “You have to be realistic about what the client’s hair will do and how it will behave in different weather conditions,” says Simona. “It’s important that your bridal hair last the distance.”
Simona says for brides who want their hair down, she suggests a plan B. “I usually suggest to my clients that we have a hot weather option too, so that they can stay cool and comfortable. That could involve pinning the hair back loosely with hair around the face to maintain a soft look, or pinning it up off the neck with soft waves or texture and movement through the hair.”
Simona’s magic ‘stay-put’ tools are high-powered products. “I like to build up product in the hair to give it long lasting hold. Some of my must haves are:
- Tigi Catwalk by Tigi Strong Hold Mousse
- L’Oreal Professionnel Tecni.ART Pli heat activated setting spray
- Schwarzkopf OSiS+ Dust It Mattifying Powder
- L’Oreal Professionnel Infinium hairspray
- White Sands Setting Lotion. This is amazing for humid weather. It gives a super strong hold, can be used as a working spray and to set the hair at the ends.
Make melt-proof makeup
“With makeup on a hot day, it’s all about how you prep the skin and set the makeup,” says Simona. “Getting ready in a room that’s air-conditioned is a priority. If you can stay cool while getting your hair and makeup done, you’re off to a good start!
“I like to use a light hydrating moisturiser to begin with. Let it absorb into the skin, then apply a mattifying primer. Here are my faves:
- Becca Ever-Matte Poreless Priming Perfector is great for very oily skin. Use small amounts.
- Napoleon Perdis Auto Pilot Pore Minimizer & Mattifier suits most skins.
- Make up For Ever Nourishing Primer skin equaliser in matte is great for oily skin.
- Mac Prep + Prime Natural Radiance primer is great on all skin types.
- Hourglass Veil Mineral Primer SPF 15 is super light for all skin types.”
Start on firm foundations
“It’s important to choose the right foundation for your client’s skin type,” explains Simona. “I like to set foundation with a translucent powder by pressing it in with a powder puff, then dusting away any access. At the end, I spritz the whole face with a setting lotion.”
Don’t forget your eyes – the windows to your soul, sister! “I always use a long wearing eyeshadow primer, like Mac Pro Longwear Paint Pots to keep the pigment true and prevent creasing. And a waterproof mascara is a must for weddings!
And for touch ups? “A touch up kit with blotting papers, pressed powder, lippie, deodorant and wet wipes is extremely helpful if you have an all-day wedding.”
Notch up the beauty gears
Every bride, and guest, wants their makeup to go the distance, so if you’re having a scorching summer wedding, may we suggest skipping the bicycle built or the (no air conditioning) vintage hot wheels? “My biggest tip for summer weddings is to choose an air conditioned hotel, car and church if possible,” says Simona. “The last thing you want is get into a hot car that feels like an oven in your big wedding dress. You will already be feeling nervous, which naturally raises your body temperature.”