When I first started researching the cost of professional hair and makeup for weddings, I was SHOCKED! For a girl who usually gets her hair cut at the Aveda Institute for $18 a pop, prices in the hundreds of dollars were awe-inspiring. And that was just for the bride — bringing my mother and bridesmaids along for the ride would cost, roughly, one gazillion dollars.
But then I realized there was a budget option: my friends at the Aveda Institute. You never know which student will be assigned, but my many haircuts have run the gamut from adequate to great. And the price? $10 for a makeup application, $15 for a short-hair do, and $40 for an updo!
At least, I think that’s the updo price. I paid for my mother’s short-hair style but never had the chance to pay for my own beauty …. BECAUSE A STRANGER PAID FOR IT!
A note to the anonymous person who paid for my hair and makeup on my wedding day — I can’t tell you how much your generous gesture meant to me. The enormous smile that was pasted on my face all day had its start in the amazing warmth I felt from your act of kindness. I pray the good karma comes back around to you someday.
As far as tips go, (1) I highly recommend bringing photos of the style you’re looking for. Even though I had no personal history with the stylist or makeup person, it’s easy to say “I want volume in front and a sort-of-simple bun” or “I like a natural face with some color on the eyes and lips” if you have illustrations of exactly WHAT those terms mean to you. (2) If you go the Aveda Institute route, you’re in luck if you’re a late planner — when I first tried to make an appointment, they told me to call back a month before the date. (3) And if you’re not an early riser (as I am not), be prepared! We had to arrive at 8:30 to be sure there was no rush with travel/clothes/etc. before our 2:00 ceremony.
Also? What a great place for funky photos. Here are a few more of my favorites. (All photos by Punam Bean.):
Aveda Institute DC
713 7th St NW, Washington, DC 20001
(If you’re not in DC, you may still be in luck — there are Aveda Institutes in 20 states and several countries.)
And for any DC gals or guys who aren’t comfortable with the beauty school idea — I also highly recommend my new haircut and highlight guru: William at Salon Ava. He’s great with hair, totally knows his stuff, and believes what matters most is that YOU like the results. (Mr. T got his wedding haircut from William, and now he’s started going back regularly as well.) Their makeup artist, Andre, has done the makeup for TNT’s “Christmas in Washington” for several years. And best of all, their prices are quite reasonable for their level of service.
225 Pennsylvania Ave SE, Washington, DC 20003