I am a huge supporter of all my wonderful vendor friends, so let me say upfront that I do not mean to offend anyone by acknowledging that many brides are on tight budgets and often need to prioritize what is really important to them. As a recent bride, I have been thinking about this a lot, as I did the "post-mortem" on the wedding. I had a couple regrets about some of the things I diy'ed; we were super disorganized with the i pod-(which is actually quite inexcusable when your husband is a professional sound designer but oh well) and I now wish I had sprung for a videographer. How I would have paid for a dj and videographer, I have no idea. But only if I had really thought of the pros and cons...
Which brings me to DIY makeup. I do not get offended when people tell me they are doing this (unlike many vendors who take it as a personal affront when a bride is trying to"do their job") One thing I will point out to brides who do not wear much makeup in real life is that they will need to make a substantial investment in products to use on their wedding day. And naturally high quality products are much longer lasting than mass market brands because they are packed with more pigment. So you are talking brushes (pleeeeease don't use the applicators that come with makeup unless you are a Barbie Doll ; they are way too wee to be effective) and the following products
-foundation or tinted moisturizer
-concealer for blemishes/creamy concealer for undereye circles
-cheek colors (I like to layer cream and powder for depth, contouring, and durability)
-translucent setting powder/powder puff
-eyeshadow base (prevents creasing and keeps colors true)
-eyeliner(and I usually use 2 different types)
-eye colors (usually at least three shades)
-eyebrow pencil or powder and/or brow gel
-lip liner and lip color
extras; but in my mind, essential-
-highlighting powder or cream
-illuminating powder (for undereye)
-contouring powder or cream
-false lashes and glue
So you can see that this adds up quickly, particularly if you are starting from scratch. and particularly if all those fancy new products don't exactly fit into your everyday routine.(i am personally a three or four product woman on my day off) I do often give lessons to brides who are doing destination weddings (because often the quality of makeup artists provided by these popular wedding spots can be unreliable, at best) I recommend that the client bring in her own products so I can assess what she really needs.
Do keep in mind that a professional makeup artist understands how photography affects makeup. And an artist who is well versed in bridal specifically also has worked with all the top wedding photographers-this is very important because every photographer has a different style.
I have also found that the majority of women are not able to be objective about their own face.
When I meet with a new client and am massaging primer into her face, I am deciding what features I want to play up-gorgeous green eyes; beautiful cheekbones. Most people start out their own makeup application focusing on their flaws. But seriously-people are not looking at your tiny little laugh lines or miniscule blemish-they are thinking how sweet your dimples are, or how expressive your eyebrows are.
Well that's my 2 cents. I have a much more interesting "commercial" coming very soon, courtesy of Videographer Extraordinaire Matt of Lifetime; www.lifetime-video.com
(sorry; can't get my weblinks to work; grrrr.)