Hair & Makeup Glossary


Backpiece: This is one of many hair accessories for a bride; it has comb-like teeth which sit in the hair and allows the veil to hang gracefully.

Bronzer: A cosmetic product designed to add a darker skin tone, usually around the cheeks and forehead. It’s available as a powder or a cream.

Clip-in extensions: The cheapest, and usually the best, option for most women who want longer hair. Such extensions are made of synthetic hair and clipped into your existing hair. They are great for those with fine hair and for those who only want them temporarily.

Comb: This is an intricately decorated item that can be inserted into your bridal hairstyle to add an elegant touch.

Concealer: This is ideal for covering blemishes and naturally occurring dark circles found under the eyes. If you want to avoid using this, gently care for your skin and get a good night’s sleep on the eve of your wedding; this will reduce the likelihood of blemishes and circles.

Coronet: This circular decorative headpiece can be made of flowers, rather like a garland as they can be made of flowers. They are also made of a silver metallic design.

Crowns: These decorative metallic headpieces aren’t just for the bride, but for the groom too. The main difference between crowns and other headpieces is that crowns are a complete circle.

Eye shadow: This is an essential makeup product which can be subtle or bold, depending on your taste. The powder should be swept across the eye with an eye shadow brush. They can be purchased in many different colours and can be combined to enhance your natural beauty.

Face and body scrub: An excellent type of exfoliating treatment that has a granular consistency and helps to clear blocked pores. Using this in the months before applying your bridal makeup is ideal. They are also available as a foam, which is dispersed like mousse and applied softly to the skin in circular motions, as well as gels and creams.

Face Shape: Everyone has one of six face shapes: oval, heart, round, long, square and triangular.
These can make a difference to your hairstyle and makeup, as following advice based on your face shape can give you a whole new look for the big day.

Foundation: This essential product is the base for the bridal makeup. Generally, this should match your skin tone unless a makeup professional has advised you otherwise or if you are following guidance regarding your face shape (above). It gives your skin an even surface and texture for the following layers of makeup.

Fusion extensions: This is a luxurious, expensive treatment that is the most seamless type of hair extension. They are the best for comfort and for invisibility, but take a long time to install and are a long-term form of hair extension. If you just want your look for the wedding day, see clip-in extensions above.

Garland: A headpiece worn by the bride, usually made of flowers. The groom often wears this as well as their bride in Pagan and Wiccan weddings.

Glue-in extensions: Fake hair glued into your hair to flawlessly give your hair a longer and/or thicker appearance. They are great in the short-term as you can sleep in them, wash your hair with them and can last for some weeks. However, the glue can damage your hair, so they must be used with care.

Hair pins: These delicate items are ideal for pinning back fine hair, and can be purchased in a vast range of beautiful designs.

Lip liner/pencil: This is used to outline the lips, drawing around the outer edges with a thick or thin line. This is a popular, bold look, but the line can be smudged for a softer effect. The purpose of this product is to define the outer- edges of your lip, and can additionally be used to provide a more permanent colour base before the lipstick (below) is applied.

Lipstick: This adds the colour of your choice and plumpness to your lips for the big day. They also protect your lips and can be enhanced with lip liner (above).

Mantilla: This is a Spanish wedding veil which covers most of the hair and shoulders. It is white, usually made of silk or lace, and it may affect your hairstyle depending on the style and length of your individual mantilla. Some have an intricate fringe and a clear back; others are entirely covered with delicate needlework.

Mascara: This substance is applied in strokes away from the eye. Black is fashionable, but other colours are becoming more popular. Its main effects are to lengthen and thicken the eyelashes. Mascara is sold as a liquid, a cream and as a cake substance and a mascara brush is used to apply the cosmetic product.

Nail artwork: This can be simple or intricate and available in virtually any design you can think of. Patterns, specific designs and colour schemes are all potential beautiful nail designs for you and your big day.

Over-brushing: We all know to brush our hair regularly, but few people know that brushing your hair too much can actually damage it. The recommended 100 brushes a day can be too much, especially for those who use cheap brushes which can cause split ends and other problems. Invest in a good brush and don’t overdo your brushing – your hair will thank you.

Over-washing: Just as brushing your hair too much can damage it, using shampoo and conditioner too often can cause more damage than good to your hair. The scalp produces natural oils which, when washed out, can cause a variety of problems for your hair. Generally, every other day should be often enough for most hair types.

Peineta: This is an ornamental convex comb often (but not always) used to hold a mantilla in place. It also originates from Spain, and is usually a pearly hue.

Perm: A chemical procedure which keeps tightly curled hair in place for months at a time. As with any chemicals you apply to your hair, this can cause damage in the long term.

a. This is a layered veil which extends outwards and is placed on the crown of the head – it can be incorporated into numerous bridal hairstyles.
b. A pouf can also refer to an elevated hairstyle. It was first made fashionable in France around 1774 by Marie Antoinette, and made a revival as a ‘beehive’ hairstyle in the 1960s. It is now a popular bridal hairstyle.
c. It is also a small seat that is cushioned and often sequined. This is a popular wedding gift.

Sew-in extensions: These types of fake hair are sewn into your hair in a process that takes some hours. There are some benefits but it will mean your natural hair is inaccessible and can’t be washed while these extensions are in; as well as this, they aren’t suitable for those with naturally straight or fine hair.

Snood: This is a net or bag used to contain your hair and originate from Scotland. They often have a pearlescent design but they are available in various designs.

Tiara: Originally, this word was used to describe the headpieces worn by Persian nobility. Modern tiaras are usually nestled in the front of the bride’s hair, and don’t circle the entire head (see crowns).

Trial: All professional makeup artists and hair stylists will offer the opportunity to show you your hair and/or makeup before the big day arrives. This ensures that you look perfect on your big day, as this is the time to make alterations where necessary.