Let the bells ring out, weddings are BACK! After more delays, the summer of love is ahead of us with plenty of re-scheduled weddings. If you’re looking to get hitched, here is some key advice for how to help your bridal hair styling run smoothly
There are so many (so many) things to think about when you’re planning a wedding – especially if you’ve had to reschedule it a handful of times thanks to an unexpected pandemic, and your suppliers have had to be moved around like Tetris blocks.
Finding the perfect fit really does make all the difference, so we asked a couple of bridal hair experts for their top tips on how to make your hair test and big day run smoothly, as well as hint to what the big style of the season will be.
The Hair Test
This is much more than just a meet-cute for your hair and/or make-up artist. Instead you really need to think of this as a low-key run-through for the big day, which is what it really is. And to start things off right, that requires some planning on your part.
“Come prepared,” advises Cimone Cheveux, a freelance hairdresser who specialises in bridal work. “Come with your hair coloured the way it will be on the day, bring your accessories (both hair and jewellery) and veil, and if you are a curly girl then bring your hair products. There’s a lot to take into account so come as prepared as you possibly can.” The more you can remember to bring, the more you are able to engage with and educate your bridal hairdresser, then the smoother things will run on the big day. For your sake (and theirs) do not decide to have anything more than a maintenance trim after you’ve settled on an updo with long hair…
If you are planning to have extensions on the day, Cimone recommends either already having them fitted for your test, or to let your stylist know to bring some clip-in extensions so they are working with the right sort of length instead of guessing. “We can give you an idea, with clip-ins, for the best idea of thickness and length for styling. Or if you’re planning to have bonded extensions then ideally come with those already in, with plans to have them re-fitted between the test and the big day,” Cimone advises.
Your outfit choice is another big help for your bridal artists during the test. “I encourage brides to wear a pale or white top. If they can find something with a similar neck line to their dress then even better,” says Tabitha MacCurrach-Paine, who was voted Wedding Hair Stylist of the Year 2021. “A look can be really affected by what colour and neck line is next to it. I also ask for clean, dry hair that hasn’t had any heated tongs or straighteners used, as these flatten the hair cuticle and compromise the results when I come to use my own heated tools in the trial session.”
Hair care is also a big focus for Tabitha – from the moment of booking she is invested in her clients’ hair and its condition, even gifting each bride some damage-defending popbands to use rather than traditional hair ties, as well as personalised care tips.
The hair test should be a non-negotiable for all bridal artists, but many will differ on how early you should book yours in. Cimone’s ideal timeframe is at least 12 weeks: “that way if we decided we want to have another trial to finalise ideas then we have the time to fit that in.” Obviously, when plans shift so suddenly this isn’t always possible and she’s had as little time as two weeks before the big day before, but for peace of mind a nice three months’ gap works wonders. “I can make it work, but they’re going to have to like it the first time around,” she adds with a laugh.
Each bride has their own style and vibe, but we’ve heard from numerous sources that ponytails are going to be huge in the bridal scene this year. Kasia Fortuna, one of the most highly regarded bridal hair educators in the UK, let slip to us that ponytails are having a real moment, and Cimone agrees. “Voluminous ponytails that look sexy, yet still retain the long hair element,” she adds, are what she expects to see a lot of.
“Inspiration pictures in their trial are a great point of comparison and for me to unlock what they do and don’t want, while also guiding them and giving them options they might not have thought of,” says Tabitha. “We can do so much with tools, products and extra hair pieces, but they all have their place. I certainly like to invest in understanding my bride’s hair line, parting and hair texture too, as to what style might be best for their face shape and overall wedding vibe. I don’t think soft and brushed out curls or waves are going anywhere, whether pinned or not. Soft, airy, teased-out looks and porcelain hair accessories are my current favourites at the moment.”
At the end of the day, your bridal stylist is there to make you feel your very best, while also helping to make the run up to those doors opening as smooth as possible. A good fit for personality and style is huge, so be sure to build in that crucial time to test, and be honest and clear in your trial for the best results. Now, where’s our confetti…