You have a few options.

By Jillian Kramer
September 10, 2019

You want to look breathtaking and stunning in your engagement photos, but you also want to look like yourself. "Now, more than ever, couples—especially my brides—want to look natural in their photos," describes Christina Piombetti, wedding photographer and owner of Christina Piombetti Photography. "They don't want stiff poses and they don't want their hair and makeup to be so overdone they no longer feel like themselves."

And that leads to the question: How done-up should you be for your engagement photos? When it comes to makeup, Piombetti recommends applying just 10 percent more than you wear on the average day. "A lot of brides who don't normally wear a lot of makeup feel like it's 'too much,' but it's just right for photos," she promises. "A talented makeup artist will be able to keep a natural appearance without making you look like the latest member of KISS."

Related: Tips for Taking Picture-Perfect Engagement Photos

Jocelyn Voo, wedding photographer and owner of Everly Studios, agrees that a little extra is just enough. "I'm a strong believer that women should wear makeup that makes them feel comfortable and beautiful, but dialed up a bit," Voo explains. "If you are unaccustomed to wearing false eyelashes, for example, and end up squinting and rubbing your eyes a lot, this obviously won't give you the va-va-voom your makeup artist intended. But if you're naturally a minimalist when it comes to makeup, then consider trying a bolder shade of lipstick or some bronzer." As Voo explains, "Photos tend to wash out makeup a little bit, so being a little bolder with help your makeup stand out."

For hair, consider the type of photos you're trying to capture, Voo recommends. "If couples are into organic, lifestyle-type engagement photos with hair whipping in the wind and lots of hair-touching and motion, tell your stylist to keep these things in mind," she says. "If you want elegant, not-a-strand-out-of-place glamour shots, lay on the hairspray." Of course, the environment should be considered, too, when it comes to how to style your hair. "If it's an outdoor location and a windy day, you'll want to adjust as necessary," Voo recommends.

And while men might not think about getting "done up" for their photos, there are a few things they should keep in mind: "It's not uncommon for my grooms to keep a hanky in their pocket if it's a hot summer day and they're heavy sweaters," says Voo, "and I'm not above recommending some concealer if they have an unexpected pimple or some blotting tissues if they have shine on their forehead." Piombetti recommends her grooms indulge in "a nice shave before their session," she says. And for those close-up shots, "there's no shame in the men's mani game either; it can be relaxing and it makes such a big difference!"

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