How to Get the Most Out of Your Makeup Trial

Even though you may have mastered the art of applying your own makeup, you might not be translating your style accurately when it comes to your makeup trial. Getting across the look you like to the experts can be tricky! We sat down with Kimara Ahnert, of Kimara Ahnert Makeup & Skincare Studio in NYC, to learn how to make the most of your makeup trial — and how to avoid the most common makeup trial mistakes.

1. Be Specific
“You may say natural but want false individual lashes at the same time,” says Upper East Side’s favorite makeup artist, Kimara Ahnert. Rather than describing what you want as “smoky” or “natural” and using words that might be interpreted differently by the expert, you should start by telling the artist which features you want to accentuate and/or play down. For example, you can say that you want your eyes to pop, and she may recommend a more dramatic eye and neutral face and lips. Try to be as specific as possible in your verbal descriptions.

2. Bring the Goods
Provide as many props and visuals as possible, including makeup products you love, as well as magazine tearouts of your favorite looks. Better yet, Kimara gives this recommendation: “Apply your own makeup like you would for going out and wear it to your trial. It is the best way for me to see what you usually do and improve upon it.”

3. Take Notes
So now that you’ve completed your first pre-wedding makeup trial, how will you remember everything that she applied to your glowing new face? Kimara vetoes the traditional method of picture-taking and instead will jot down notes during your trial. “Brides often say to me, ’You don't take a picture? How do you remember months from now on my day what we did at the trial?’ That is why I write down notes of what I used on the contract to reference the day of the wedding. I also suggest to my brides that they buy the lipstick or lip gloss we used at the trial, so they can have it for touchups on the day and also to see if they like it outside the studio lighting.”

For more information about Kimara Ahnert, check out

—Naima DiFranco