"I did my own hair and makeup for my wedding and here's every single product I used."

Last month, Kelly McCarren, Showpo’s Head of Content and co-host of Mamamia podcasts You Beauty and Overshare, got married.

After a year of planning her whole wedding herself, Kelly’s wedding day kind of went up in flames after a series of circumstances outside of her control. (Quite literally, as her wedding venue was in an area affected by the NSW bush fires.)

But despite calling her big day ‘the disaster wedding’, Kelly did find one part of the wedding preparation relaxing and calming – doing her own makeup.

“Wait. Doing your own makeup… for your wedding… that was calming?” you ask. Yep, sure was.

By popular demand, Kelly shared exactly how she did her wedding day beauty look on the You Beauty podcast. From the wedding beauty prep she did in the lead up, to every single product she put on her face on the day, here’s a look inside Kelly McCarren’s wedding beauty diary.

You can watch Kelly recreate her full wedding day makeup look in the video below! Post continues after video.

Video via Kelly McCarren

Kelly’s wedding beauty prep.

I’m not that great with my skincare but I was very well-behaved. I’ve talked about skin needling a lot and I can honestly say that’s changed my skin more than anything I’ve ever done. I could not recommend it more. I get really bad, hormonal acne flare ups and I used to get a lot of blind pimples, and I have not had one since I started having needling – except four pimples the day after the wedding.

I had needling once a month for about four months in the lead up to the wedding, starting at 0.5mm and working up to 1.5mm. I wanted radiance and youthfulness, and a lot of people asked me if I’d had Botox. I also had a mix of cryotherapy and Omnilux [light therapy] to heal the skin afterwards. Plus, in the fortnights between the last two skin needling treatments, I had a peel and more Omnilux. I used the Tatcha Luminous Dewy Skin Masks every single day in the lead up as well as a cheaper Andalou glow mask.


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I did a spray tan trial and it was not good, so I felt more comfortable doing my own tan. I used La Beach tan and look, I had a weird patch on my hand and elbow, but at least it was my own fault. I also got SNS done on my nails a week prior to the day in a baby pink nude colour with an oval shape.

Here’s the full list of products Kelly used for her wedding prep:

You can listen to Kelly talk about what it was like doing her own wedding day bridal makeup on the You Beauty podcast below. Post continues after audio.

Kelly’s wedding day skincare.

On the day, the first thing I did when I started getting ready was shave all the bum fluff off my face with the MCoBeauty pink face razor. Then, I used a Tatcha sheet mask and The Ordinary’s Hyaluronic Acid Serum to give myself a nice dose of moisture.

I also used the Farsali Unicorn Essence, which is really good. It’s a serum and primer, so your makeup sits really nicely on top. The last thing I wanted was for my skin to look cakey and dry. On top of that, I used a Marc Jacobs moisturiser, which I only started using the week prior but it’s the perfect base for glowing makeup. It doesn’t separate under makeup and doesn’t have any SPF in it (because SPF can cause a flashback effect in photos).

Here’s the full list of products Kelly used for her wedding day skincare:

Kelly’s wedding day hair and makeup.


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I’m very fussy with people doing my makeup and I knew how I wanted to look, and my actual wedding day was quite chaotic (which I spoke about on the Overshare podcast) but I actually found doing my makeup really calming. Everyone left me alone in a room and I did it cross-legged on the floor with a compact, no mirror. Just exactly how I would do it on a normal day because that’s what made me feel good. It was calm and I took my time, and I was so happy with it.

That said, I had help curling my hair, but I don’t know why I did that. I had this long ponytail, but it wasn’t me and I didn’t like it. When I changed into my second dress, I took the extensions out, brushed out the curls and put it in a low bun at the back of my end, and I felt so much more like me. I should’ve just done what I always do and what I know looks good.

For my makeup I started with the Becca shimmery primer and my wedding foundation was NARS Sheer Glow. My husband Luke hates a lot of makeup and I know it’s not about what he likes, but on our wedding day I wanted him to think I looked nice. I used the Pixi colour corrector under my eyes and the Tarte Shape Tape concealer.

I loved my eye makeup look and I really focused on lifting the eye area and taking my time blending all the shadows so it was seamless. I used the Mecca Max Over The Moon Eyeshadow Palette, $40 for 25 shades. I’ve used the palette so many times, it has the perfect pink and peachy colours. On the actual eyelid, I used the Tarte Foil Fingers palette, which has beautiful peach and champagne foil shades in it. I wore false lashes on the outer half of my lashes to give a winged looked without doing a wing eyeliner, and I used a little bit of the MAC pot liquid liner along the lash line to bring the false lashes together.


For my cheeks, I mixed the NYX Sweet Cheeks blush with the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Edit because it’s got a beautiful sheen to it. I also used a bit of that Hourglass powder to set my face. For highlighter, I used the Designer Brands Vivid Glow Illuminator Palette mixed with the MAC Hyper Real palette. I also used a Physicians Formula Bronzer and the Westman Atelier stick just for contouring.

For lips, I used the Tom Ford Beauty Lip Color Matte in First Time, which was a special lipstick I’d been saving for the wedding, and during the day I used a Clarins lip oil. Last, I used a Cover FX setting spray and just a hint of the MAC setting spray with gold flecks in it.

I was so happy with how my makeup turned out and I’m so glad I did it myself because I just looked and felt like me.

Here’s the full list of products Kelly used for her wedding day makeup look:

If you want to hear more about Kelly’s disaster wedding day, get this episode of Overshare in your ears below. Feature image: Supplied/@kelly_mccarren

Did you do your own wedding hair and makeup? How did you find the experience? Tell us your thoughts in the comments below!

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