The Indian vanity case is probably the most complicated of all. We not only have to be concerned about the skin type, but also the complexion that varies immensely from one to another. Also, talking particularly about Indian bridal makeup, it becomes even more complex due to the grandeur and brightness of the clothes. The Indian bride dresses majestically in heavy lehengas and saris with amass of gold and zari work. The makeup, in such a scenario, could easily get masked or even overt. Hence, the bridal makeup tips of the western world (which cares for the sophisticated white gowns) do not really apply in India.

While earlier Indian bridal makeup would be done simply by the most ‘high maintenance aunt or relative’ of the bride, professional artists and salons have now made it a classy affair. So from the best techniques to products, the Indian makeup industry is evolving like never before.

To start with, we talk about the basic ways to ensure that the Indian Bridal makeup is done most ideally –

A. Base Makeup

With the typical Indian mentality of “looking fair”, the Indian beauticians are generally determined to make you look much fairer than you possibly could ever be. Hence, the base make up is where it all goes wrong. We suggest you to drop the white skin fetish and instead find a base that matches your skin tone perfectly. This would help you look more real and less artificial. The best way is to apply ice to the bride’s face before the base applied, so the makeup lasts for longer.

B. Eye makeup

Eyes are mostly the prettiest feature on an Indian bride’s face and therefore, also the most tricky to take care of during the makeup session. Indian women are said to have the most captivating and mysterious eyes and one cannot afford to spoil such a feature by being too loud. We advice less use of greens, blues and any such fanatical coloured eye shadows. What works best on Indian women is a thick black kohl (kajal) applied in a manner that it makes their eyes appear doe shaped. The eye shadow can be a shade of either red or brown. Remember to put tons of mascara for an added effect.

C. Lip makeup

Since the wedding outfit is mostly in the shades of red, the desi brides should concentrate on playing with shades of maroons, reds and pinks on the D Day. Try not to go too eccentric with the lip shade on your wedding day. Also, make sure you do not do the worst – putting a bright blood red shade on the lips and looking like a vampire bride. Tone it down!

D. Cheeks

Cheek makeup should preferably be a lot more toned down since everything else is comparatively loud. Note that pan cake makeup is not the only way to look bright and shiny on your wedding day. A hint of colour flush and use of a fine matt gold dust should be appropriate.

E. Decorative art

Though more and more brides are keeping away from it nowadays, decorative art like shining beads on the forehead have their own peculiar charm. However, this should be negligible so the beauty of the design can be appreciated. Don’t go in for heavy designs, else your face would look crowded.

Indian skin tones can broadly be categorised into Fair, Wheatish and Dusky.

Brides with wheatish skin tone:


It is quite difficult to find the right colors for wheatish skin tones as the shades always tend to be either darker or lighter than the skin tone, making it difficult to find the perfect match. If you seem to be facing this dilemma, then here is a guide to help you find the right shades that match your tone.


  • It is difficult to find products in the market specifically suitable for the wheatish skin tone. Again, there can be several shades for this skin tone. Therefore, it might be a little tricky to find that perfect foundation that suits this skin colour. You can find your best bet by buying your foundation in two shades – one that is lighter and another one that is darker ideal for your skin type.
  • You can then merge both and create a perfect one for yourself. Test on your skin till you learn the best ratio. This should be the shade that is closest to your skin tone.
  • The safest and easiest way is to apply the base by using a foundation brush.
  • Carefully blend it with a brush without messing up.
  • Don’t forget to create a unified look by blending it towards your neck, jaw and ear line. This will give you an overall finished look.



Blushes in colours like corals and rose compliment the wheatish skin a lot. They add warmth to the cheeks, while setting off the natural tone beautifully.

Eye shadow and liners

  • Women with a wheatish skin tone should avoid using smokey eye look on their wedding day.
  • Instead of thick upper lashes draw a thin one to make the eyes look bigger and fresh like the lower eye lashes.
  • False eyelashes when put correctly with a volume express formula mascara or a hyper curl mascara can create wonders.
  • For the eye shadow, you can choose mauves, burgundys to pale rose shades for the eyes.


  • Continue with the same advice by using berry, burgundy, plum and wine shades for the lips.
  • Women with oily skin should rather use glitters on matte finish lipsticks and the ones with dry skin can go for a touch of glossy textures in their lipsticks.

Brides with fair to very fair skin tones:

Brides with fair Indian tones can easily choose cool shades of makeup. They can easily pull off bright pinks, reds and other such peculiar colours. Again, choosing the right kind of foundation can be a catch, since there is always a fear of looking ghostly pale. While fair skin can be a blessing, it can also be a bane if the girl is not confident enough to carry off her makeup. Hence, be unique and be proud to boast those pink and pink based peachy hues.


To specify brands, MAC and Inglot have many of such lovely colours. One can even experiment with varied colours in eye makeup. Make sure that your eye makeup and lip makeup do not cancel but instead balance out each other. For the blush, try beautiful shades of coral and pink.


  • The advice remains the same – do not choose a foundation which is lighter that your skin tone. Carry your previous foundation bottle with you when you are out on a purchase for a new one. This helps you in every which way. If you have been satisfied with the last one, then you can choose the same. If not, you can choose a shade lighter or darker.
  • Make sure your makeup person does not test the shade of foundation on your wrist since that is a completely wrong approach. The ideal way is to apply it on your jaw line and match it with proper face complexion.
  • It is also important to evaluate how your foundation will look during the daylight incase it is a day function.
  • You can give any one of these a try – Bobbi Brown Long-Wear Even Finish Foundation Spf 15 – Natural, Max Factor Xperience Weightless Foundation – 85 Deep Soapstone, Lakme Absolute Mattreal Skin Natural Mousse Foundation 16h Golden Medium, NYX Hd Studio Photogenic Foundation – Natural.


Keeping it natural is the mantra for fair skin tones! Soft pinks and peaches are great blush options and these makeup tricks work well for fair skins! For blush options, make sure that you avoid anything too warm, especially when you are dealing with bronzer. You also might want to avoid using anything yellow-based, as it can truly wash you out.

Mascara, Eye liner and Eye Shadow

Dark mascara (blackest black) works perfectly well with fair skin because it gives you a dramatic look. L’Oreal and Chanel make the best ones, just look for ultra black color. According to experts, liquid liners are best suitable for fairer skin tones. Liquid is in fact, the best for any eye makeup.

Note that bright, bright blues, pinks and browns around the eyes can drain us of all of the color we do have naturally in our cheeks.

Brides with darker skin tones:

Brides with darker skin tone might have issues related to pimples. Do not pick at your pimples or any scars, incase you have them, close to your big day. This is because scars are more visible on darker skin shades.

Foundation and Face Powder

Again, make sure that you don’t choose lighter shades of foundation and face powder than your skin tone as your skin may look weird and patchy. Choose mute colours and restrain from looking exaggerated. We recommend you to use a liquid foundation, because powder foundation does not spread evenly. Just as we advised before, in case you are unable to find a match, choose two colours to blend and apply on your skin.

Also, using face powder that matches your skin tone can completely avoid your darker skin appear oily and shiny.


Shades like dark peach, gold, bronze, wine red, coral rose, or any darker shade will make you skin tone appear wonderful. Out of these, combination of gold with any other color shade like red or pink can make you look stunning on your big day.

Eye shadow, liner and mascara

Eye make up can be perfect match to the wedding attire with different shades like purple and green shades, metallic, copper, and burgundy are just perfect for your skin. Smoky eyes will compliment your look and also you can also mix two shades of the same color to make you look more dazzling.


Dark skinned ladies should ideally go for matte finish lipsticks. Warm tones work the best – you can opt for lip colors like burgundy, dark reds, maroons, plums, coral, hot pink, and beige. Applying concealer before applying lipstick will make your lips look stunning.

Apart from all of this, it is obvious that your makeup should increase the grace of your wedding dress. Your make up expert should have a clear idea of what your dress would appear like in front of the camera, and choose your makeup colours and texture carefully.

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