December 2, 2020

Entry Details

Beauty Queen

Next in the series of budgeting guides is a breakdown of hair and makeup costs for wedding services. There are so many different factors that go into hair and makeup pricing, so I wanted to share those – and compare some solid numbers so that you can set your expectations going into wedding planning! But first, a story……

Porsche Princess

2020 has been hard enough as it is for everyone. A world wide pandemic, postponed weddings galore, and it brought a few challenging clients.

Context: A fee was agreed to upfront for a hair and makeup trial run.
If the trial went well – this bride would book the hair and makeup company for her wedding day. She mentioned to us that several of her friends have received free trial runs in advance of signing a contract for services. Let’s see how the thread played out between this bride (in grey) and our team (blue).

Real screen shot with names blurred.

Now, the hair and makeup artist showed up to do her job on time, and at the agreed upon rate, but because she rolled up in a Porsche – this bride decided she makes too much money as a HAMU artist. Therefore, the client was entitled to a discount.

Would you ask Beyonce for a discount on her concert tickets because she is loaded and married to Jay-Z? How about asking for free fries at McDonalds since they are a billion dollar conglomerate? Sure, a little negotiation is ok sometimes – but it must be agreed upon upfront.

OPINION: It’s none of your business what your wedding vendors drive or the homes they live in. Maybe they are trust fund kids but still choose to work? Or she has a ton of debt on that Porsche? Perhaps she had a death in the family and came into some cash? Maybe her husband is rich? Who knows, but it’s not your business unless you are her financial planner. If you fee

Pro Tips

  1. Enjoy every minute of hair and makeup. Your wedding day will be one of the most formal days of your life – even if you are low key. So enjoy it, and soak in every minute of having this one day being all about you!
  2. Be honest with your feedback to your artists. Everyone views themselves as beautiful differently, and it’s ok to want to make changes so you feel more comfortable and confident.
  3. If you are looking for ways to decrease you overall hair and makeup investment, we suggest these few ways:
    • Only pay for makeup and let your bridesmaids opt to pay for their own hair, or do their own. After all, most of us know how to use a curling iron and look great – but that airbrushed look can’t be achieved by an amateur.
    • Give your bridesmaids the option to pay for their own hair and makeup services but do not require it of everyone.
    • Ask about pricing for airbrush vs. standard, or updo’s vs down, and fake lashes. Some artists offer lesser pricing for easier to achieve looks.
    • Opt for a hair and makeup studio, or even a beauty counter of your favorite cosmetics brand. Sometimes having “on demand” services are more expensive, but also more convenient for your wedding day.

Makeup Math

We sat down with our friend and professional hair and makeup artist Maitee Miles and asked her a few questions about the business. With over 32 years of experience as a professional hair and makeup artist, she knows what it takes for brides to feel beautiful on wedding day, and how to run a successful hair and makeup company. We also went one step further to do some basic math to show that you truly are not being ripped off.

Tell me about the overhead costs for a hair and makeup artist

Maitee: “We purchase high-end reputable make up many of which we don’t get discounts on. Have to incorporate the cost of the entire kit,  high end make up, all hair tools and supplies that need to be replenished on a regular basis. Also all of the sanitary products, and continuing education and licenses to operate. Then we have things like advertising, scheduling, travel and gas, and staffing also have to be factored in.”


We compared fees from six of our favorite hair and makeup in DFW and the following ranges are what you can expect for professional, on location services:

The above breakdown is a rough estimate formulated from some basic math. This doesn’t include any of the expenses like Maitee lists above. So either our Porsche driving makeup artist has another job – or she is a total girl boss who is managing a team to increase her earnings (and costs!).

What should brides look for when booking a hair/makeup artist?

Maitee: “When booking a hair and make up artist it is very important to get personal recommendations from people you trust. Longevity, quality of work, and reviews are all super important. You also want to make sure that you have somebody who is flexible, kind, and easy to work with. Wedding days can often be unpredictable. We are the best insurance that you can get to make sure that your wedding day runs happy smooth and punctual.” (which is why Pop Parties loves the MM team!)

“If there’s anything that I would really love for brides to focus on when hiring a hair and make up artist, it is making sure that you are comfortable and connected with that person. That you will be able to be open and honest about what you do and don’t like. Take your time to make the phone calls and speak personally to the artist trust your gut (or your planner!) and get a feel for their temperament and knowledge.”

Guide from the Pros

Maitee was gracious enough to share some of her favorite products with us, that she loves to use on clients. If you’re looking for an update to your makeup routine – check out our suggestions below from the pros – a few of my very own favorites are included here as well. And I’ll be adding a few more things to my Christmas list!

Bye Beautiful

As always, thank you for coming to my Ted Talk on hair and makeup services. More fun post and planning tips to come!

Pop Parties is known for its solid reputation and attention to detail as it relates to both design and financial related investments in wedding planning. We are here to guide you with an honest and open approach, driven by facts (like basic math!) and prior industry experience. Every vendor that our team refers and works with is properly vetted and insured. For those reasons, we do not always work with the “cheapest” – but with those who provide the highest value for the service they provide to you – including the peace of mind in knowing they will still be in business after a world wide pandemic.

XO – Molly and the Pop Parties Team

Exceeded all of my

very high


The entire Pop Parties team is the most organized, communicative, and on-it team I have encountered Their response time is unbelievable and made my entire wedding day stress-free. Not one detail was missed, and the wedding was the most beautiful and fun evening. They maintained professionalism, while also feeling like a close friend through the entire process. I could not recommend them enough.

- Claire, Bride