bridal makeup

Sharon specialises in bridal and special occasion make up, workshops and masterclasses.

Bridal Skincare Steps

Looking after your skin is always important.  We tend to give it a little more TLC on the lead up to special events!

Unfortunately all weddings are postponed at the moment, it is important to continue caring for your skin and prepping it for your Wedding Day.

Caring for your skin is vital.  You can never start this process too early nor it is never too late to start!

  • Cleanse your skin day & night, always remove your make up.
  • Try and get your recommended sleep of 6-8 hours.
  • Stay hydrated, drink plenty of water, you can never overdo this step !
  • Wear SPF
  • Use skin-specific skincare products especially your moisturiser
  • Wear eye cream day and night!
  • Get fresh air, great for your skin and your well-being!


Morning Routine

  • Cleanse- This gets rid of any dirt, left over make up and clogging elements.
  • Cleanse again- This works deep into your pores and leaves your skin squeaky clean
  • Serum- I would never skip this step, a serum penetrates deeper into your skin leaving your skin with a firm and smooth texture. Serums lock in moisture.
  • Moisturiser-It is important to use the correct moisturiser for your skin type. Moisturising keeps your skin cells healthy. Using a cream with an SPF will protect your skin from sun damage!
  • Eye cream- These creams are generally are a thicker cream so they nourish the thin layer of skin around your eyes. Eye creams cater for all issues: puffiness, dark circles, fine lines and dullness!
  • Not everyone adds primer to their skin routine but I think it is an important step especially if you are going to apply make up shortly afterwards! Primer protects your skin and acts as a barrier between your skin and make up! If you don’t have an SPF in your moisturiser then maybe have it in your primer!

Night-time Skin care routine

  • Cleanse- same as day time routine
  • Cleanse again
  • Toner- Restores your skins ph balance! Also known to prevent ingrown hairs.
  • Serum- Same as day time routine.
  • Face oil- A personal favourite of mine. Apart from loving the feeling of the oil, it really is a magic product! Using facial oil continuously can reverse aging by improving skin elasticity!
  • Eye cream- same as day time routine.


Recommended extra skincare:  Exfoliate and Masks.

Benefits of exfoliating your skin:

  • Cleans and purifies clogged pores
  • Gets rid of dead skin cells
  • Helps skincare penetrate deep into the skin
  • Evens out skin tone
  • Boosts circulation

Benefits of using facial masks:

  • Increase hydration
  • Refines skin pores
  • Helps to reduce fine lines and wrinkles
  • Encourages even skin tone
  • Firmer skin.



There are 2 types of exfoliation used with skincare, mechanical and chemical, both have different ways of working but both end up with the same goal- renew new fresh skin cells beneath the upper surface of the skin!


There are two major types of chemical exfoliators: alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids (BHAs). AHAs is ideal for sensitive and mature skin giving extra hydration to the skin while BHAs works great with oily and acne prone skin types.




These exfoliating methods are facial scrubs or sometimes rough cloths and brushes. Scrubs are easy use and just as effective as a chemical exfoliator. There are many types of scrubs. Depending on your skin type it is important to choose the scrub for you! Most scrubs have tiny particles in them to remove dead skin cells and some have larger particles and can be harsh to your skin particularly if you have sensitive skin so be careful when choosing yours. A mild exfoliator can be suited to all skin types.


Face Masks

  • Sheet masks- Suitable for all skin types, the most versatile of all the masks.
  • Clay (or mud) masks- Great for oily and acne prone skin, the clay and mud help absorb toxins from your skin.
  • Cream masks- Ideal for dry skin, a real boost of hydration. Suitable for mature skin also.
  • Peel-off masks- Can be aimed for acne/oily skin with large pores. Great for refining pores.
  • Gel masks- Soothing & cooling, great treatment for dehydrated, dry and sensitive skin.
  • Charcoal masks- Work best on oily and acne prone skin types.
  • Sleep masks- If you’re looking for a hydrated boost, this will lift your dry dull skin.

Note: To care for your skin you will need to know your skin type: Oily, Dry, Sensitive, Dehydrated, Combination or Mature etc! Choosing your skincare regime will depend on your skin type!

The Benefits of wearing cream make up

All you need to know about Cream Make Up

The Benefits:

-Easy & quick application

-Creates a fresh natural youthful appearance

-Looks great on all skin types

-Leaves your skin looking hydrated, glowing and dewy

-No cracking, caking or sitting into fine lines

-Easily touched up!


I am a big fan of cream based make up for your everyday quick looks! If you are busy like most of us and you don’t have time for a full face of make up but yet want to make a little effort then the cream products are perfect for you!  Application can be so quick and these products need very little skill!  They are easily applied and you can use your hands & fingers, brushes are not essential! Cream products really leave your skin looking hydrated and fresh!  Great for all skin types but especially for dry/mature skin. It really brings back a natural dewy look to your skin!



Cream foundation will give your skin a more smooth and youthful appearance. The make up does not set, crack or cake on the skin! The cream texture almost sits on your skin and moves with it giving it the freedom to breathe. Suitable for all skin types especially dry and mature skin. The cream foundation will minimise wrinkles and fine lines which we do not want emphasised! Overall a beautiful fresh finish!

My favourites:        Bobbi Brown stick foundation   &  MAC studio tech foundation






Eye Shadows

Most of the cream eyeshadows have a glossy or satin base. The cream eyeshadow doesn’t need much work with application, it is very easy to apply using both fingers or brushes. It is creaseless and that makes it good for dry or mature skin as it doesn’t crack!

My favourites:    Stila Glow & Glitter liquid eyeshadows  and  Giorgio Armani eye tint liquid eyeshadow






Cream blushes are very moisturising and dewy. They give a youthful and natural appearance. Apply light layers with your fingers or synthetic brush! Great product on dry or mature skin.

My favourites:       Stila convertible colour   &   MAC blush creme






A cream bronzer has a natural sheen due to its cream texture. It leaves your skin looking dewy and fresh To give a subtle appearance apply light layers and build up to desired contour look!

My Favourite:   Benefit Hoola quickie contour stick






A cream highlighter creates a fab subtle glow that is very natural looking. Cream highlighters are never shimmery! Great for dry skin or any skin seeking a natural dewy appearance

My Favourites:     Sculpted by Aimee cream highlighters    &    Benefit Watt’s Up






Cream lipsticks are very moisturising and easy to wear. The waxy texture clings to your lips without creating dryness. The long-lasting formula is very smooth and looks great on! Ideal for women with smaller lips who are looking to create a fuller lip look!

My favourites:   MAC Satin, Cremesheen & Amplified lipsticks  and  Charlotte Tilbury k.i.s.s.i.n.g lipsticks

The Pro’s & Con’s to using both Cream & Powder make up products

Cream Make Up Pro’s

Cream Make Up Con’s

Easy to apply Eye cream shadows can crease
No brushes required-use hands only Can appear shiny especially if you have oily skin
Great for all skin types-esp dry/mature skin Not very blenable
Only need to use small amounts as highly pigmented Not as long lasting as powders
Leaves your skin with a hydrated dewy glow appearance You can’t apply creams on top of powders

Powder Make Up Pro’s

Powder Make Up Con’s

Creates a flawless matte finish Requires technique especially on the eyes
Easier blend especially eye shadows Can age the skin as powders can settle into lines & wrinkles
Make up lasts longer using powder Doesn’t appear as natural looking as the powder is obvious
Helps preventing creasing Can make dry skin flakey
Helps oily skin by absorbing oils from the skin Excess powders can make the skin look dry and dehydrated


If you like a natural, dewy youthful uber quick look then give this demo a try!

View this post on Instagram

No powders !! All liquid & cream based products.. A fresh natural look for all skin types especially dry/tired/mature skin! The dewiness really gives your skin a hydrated lift in all the right places! This quick simple youthful look takes minimum effort and can be applied with hands only! This glow can be achieved by everyone ! @bobbibrownuk vitamin enriched face base @sculpedbyaimee beauty base pearl @narsissist sheer glow foundation @lauramercier flawless fusion ultra-longwear concealer @benefit_ire Hoola quickie contour stick @stilacosmetics convertible dual lip & cheek cream in lillium @sculptedbyaimee champagne cream highlighter @giorgioarmani eye tint in sunset @benefit goof proof & gimme brows shade 3 @lancome hypnose in black @maccosmetics bombshell #makeupvideo #makeuptutorials #sharonmccormackmua #nopowders #allliquidandcream #glowy #dewyskin #naturalglow #quarantinenails #quarantineroots #lovewhatyoudo #sundayvibes #youthful #freshskin #hydratedskin

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Thank you for reading my little piece today! I hope you enjoyed it and maybe picked up a few tricks of the trade.

 Love, Sharon xxx

Make Up Application for Mature Skin

Your Skin Comes First
The first rule to makeup is to make sure your skin is in tip-top condition. The better your skin, the less makeup you’ll need. If you keep your skin well-hydrated and exfoliated and you may be able to get away with little more than under-eye concealer, mascara and lip balm every day.

The Secret Lip Plumper
You may notice that as you get older, your lips seem thinner. To plump them up, I recommend lip gloss. Add a little colour first by filling in lips with a lipstick a shade or 2 darker than your natural lip colour, then add a dab of gloss on top and that is how you get instant plump lips !

Wedding & Portrait Photographers Ebony & Pearl Photography , Wedding & Portrait Photographers Ebony & Pearl PhotographyStay Away From Dark Lipsticks
Unless you have dark skin and plump lips, I recommend staying away from super dark lipstick, which ages everyone. Rosy reds and pinks are better bets. Choose colours that are natural shades, anything too artificial will age the lips.

Use Eye Pencils Instead of Liquid Liners
Eye pencils are softer than liquid liners, which can be harsh on aging eyes. To soften the line even more, smudge it with your fingers or use an angled makeup brush dipped in dark shadow as smudged eyeliner. Don’t line the inside of the eye if you have small eyes, it makes the eye appear smaller.

Make Your Eyes the Centre of Attention
Consider making your eyes the focal point of your face. This will detract attention from any fine lines or wrinkles. Enhance your eye colour with eye shadow shades that will make your eyes pop. Avoid choosing dark colours for mature skin, always choose light flattering colours. Taupe’s, light browns/golds, light pinks/peaches, creams and neutral shades work best.

The Brilliance behind Highlighter and Illuminators
I swear by highlighters to “lift” the face and instantly shave off a few years. There are many brands on the market that work well. They are great for getting rid of dark circles and highlighting the areas you want to show off! Liquid highlighters work best on mature skin.

photo3Don’t Overdo Your Makeup
Less is more when it comes to makeup for mature skin. You don’t want to pile on the foundation, the eyeliner and the heavy lipstick. Instead, you want to use highlighter pens, tinted moisturizers and a lighter touch with the shadow and lipstick.

Wearing too much of anything once your skin starts to age can make you look far older as the make-up sinks into the fine lines and wrinkles. So always think ‘less is more’!

Add a Pop of Blush to Your Cheeks
Too many women use blush incorrectly or not at all. A pop of blush on the apples of your cheeks can brighten a dull complexion. But the trick is to blend it well so it’s not obvious you’re wearing blush.

Use Creams Instead of Powders
Older women tend to have dry skin so using the correct make up can help the skin look dewy and at its best. Choosing creamy foundations and blushes work best on mature skin.

Eyeliner for mature skin

Eyebrow pencil is a great make up tool, define them well to capture the shape of your eyebrows. The older we get the more hair we lose, especially our eyebrows and eyelashes so a way to help this situation is A well-shaped eye brow and this can take away years. Try applying mascara to upper lashes only, to open the eyes and give a fresh look.

Brides Doing It Abroad – Sharon’s Guide to What You Need To Know

aoif_00Getting married abroad and not so confident in the MUA’s or beauty salons available locally?! Well don’t worry, you are not alone…

Many brides who decide to get married away have the same concerns particularly when you don’t have time for make up trials when you land! Whether you decide to do your own make up to save money or you just don’t have time or trust in researching make up artists over there – perfecting the look you want quickly and easily on your wedding morning is achievable when you plan ahead.


The first thing you will need to do is decide on the look you are wishing to achieve. Keeping it natural will make the application easier on you and is the ultimate blushing bride look especially in warm Countries. Also you need to take the heat into consideration-You will probably want to keep the layers at a minimum!  You may find inspiration in wedding magazines and from your favourite make up artists websites. Once you have found a look you like, take a photo with you to a MUA for a make up lesson, they will show you and advise you which colours and products they think have been used on the model and how you can replicate the look at home.


  • A natural radiant finish foundation suited to your skin type (i.e. either for oily, normal or dry skin)
  • Loose powder (needed only for oily and combination skins – this will prevent shine and help keep your foundation in place)
  • Concealer (to brighten under eyes and conceal spots and blemishes)
  • Your chosen eyeshadow palette
  • Soft kohl eyeliner, white is a great choice for bridal pictures!
  • Brown or black mascara. If you are expecting to shed a tear or two on your wedding day, you may opt for a waterproof mascara.
  • Bronzer/Contour,  blusher & highlighter
  • Lip gloss with a matching lipliner.  Although matt lipsticks can be longer wearing but can dry out your lips. Glosses give a much more flattering finish and can be re-applied much easier throughout the day. Applying a lipliner underneath the gloss will not only enhance the shape of your lips but help the gloss last longer!

Book a make up lesson with your MUA a couple of weeks before you leave for your destination. You can perfect the desired look you want on your wedding day all by yourself ! Although you may not have wanted the extra expense of paying for a lesson it will be far cheaper than paying to get your makeup professionally done on the day for your entire bridal party.

Your makeup artist will know which makeup products are best for your skin type and which will be the most photogenic for you! They can also offer advice on a skincare regime that you can do leading up to the big day to make sure your skin looks healthy and clear.

After you have had your make up lesson and purchased the items you need, make sure you practice the look a few times so that you will know exactly what to do on your wedding morning. The more you practice, the quicker you’ll get at perfecting the look. If you are having difficulty applying any of the products you can always go back to your make up artist for a recap.

It is important to look after your skin leading up to your wedding day so your make up will look flawless! Foundation does not sit too well on oily or flaky skin. While if you are prone to acne and shine you will want to do everything you can to avoid a breakout on the day.

If your not sure on how to look after your skin ask a skincare specialists in your local pharmacy, they will guide you what to use on your skin type. If you are not used to exfoliating or using masks make sure you start doing it in good time before your wedding so that your skin gets used to it and doesn’t have any bad side effects! Avoid starting any new skincare products too close to the wedding incase of skin reactions.


  • Allow enough time to do your makeup on the morning.
  • Your lipgloss or lipstick is the product which will need re-applying throughout the day so remember to take it with you.
  • If you have oily skin, you may want to take some blotting pads and powder with you to absorb shine later in the day.

If you would like more advice, feel free to contact Sharon for a one-to-one session, or sign up to one of my upcoming mastersclasses. 

The Do’s and Don’ts on Your Wedding Make Up Trial

Planning for your big day takes weeks, months and some cases even years! Part of the planning is choosing the right make up artist, and it’s often quite the tricky decision for most brides so I’ve pulled together some of my top tips for choosing the best MUA for your big day!

The DO’S

  • Talk to your make up artist! Discuss your make up likes & dislikes. She does not know your style unless you talk things through.
  • Be open to suggestions! Your MUA will discuss & tailor the perfect look for you if you need guidance (once you have discussed your likes/dislikes!)
  • Collect make up pictures you like and bring them along to your make up trial! Identify what it is you like about the make up in the images. Take into account your skin colour/type/tone-you may not look exactly like that picture ! Your MUA will customise that look just for your skin colouring/type!
  • Think about your facial features, what you would like emphasised ? Would you like to focus on your eyes, lips, cheekbones or brows !
  • Consider wearing white on your make up trial, you will see how the make up looks against pale colours. Take pictures in the daylight to see how it looks!
  • Book your make up trial for the morning time/afternoon. You will see your make up at its best in the daylight, plus you get to wear your make up for the entire day so you will see how it wears throughout the day & evening!
  • Wearing fake tan on your wedding day? Then I would suggest having a test run before your make up trial so both you & your MUA can see exactly what colour your skin becomes with your tan!
  • Consider individual lashes- they give a beautiful finish to your eyes. Not only will they stand out but they create a natural fluttery look!
  • Trust your MUA! Remember your wedding make up is going to look different to your every day make up as you will need enough colour to compensate for the paleness of your wedding dress. You may find it difficult to visualise your beautiful dress, your hair & make up on your big day but your MUA will know if you need that extra bit of colour to make your look complete!

photo 2


  • Don’t have your make up trial done under overhead fluorescent lighting. It is artificial lighting & does not show your make up at its best. Arrange a time in the morning/afternoon when it’s daylight!
  • Don’t let your MUA hijack your look! When it is very tempting to say ‘Do what you think!’ I advise talk your likes/dislikes through. The last thing you want is your future husband to not recognise you at the altar!
  • Don’t over do it !! Your make up does not need to be plastered on for your photos, it will be obvious ! Ensure your not too oily on your t-zone by using blotting powder!
  • Don’t follow anything too trend-led ! You will have your professional photos for life so best to avoid statement looks you had seen on the latest catwalks! Instead choose classic/ vintage looks which will be timeless!
  • Don’t overkill your eyes. Define your eyes but avoid using dense shades which can be very dull & sunken.. Avoid overly shimmery textures too as they can reflect badly against cameras!
  • Don’t be scared of colour on lips. Neutral pale lips can look washed out in photos. If you want to play down the lips I still recommend 2 shades brighter than your natural lip colour! Pink, Rosie and Plums are a classic choice!
  • Don’t rush ! Allow plenty of time for each make up application when planning your MUA’s time of arrival on your wedding day.
  • Don’t start facials a week or two before your wedding day! You may bring out impurities or pimples your skin does not need.
  • Don’t pluck/wax/tint/tweeze a day or two before your big day. You may take a reaction to products so be sure all of this prepping is done in good time! It is also recommended to be defuzzed on your make up trial day too! After all you want your make up to look like it will be on your wedding day.
  • Don’t be afraid to tell your MUA what you like/dislike-they can fix it if you tell them! Remember it is very easy for your MUA to remove make up or simply add something else! They will not know unless you tell them!
  • Don’t let too many people influence your opinion- the only one that counts is yours!

photo 4
On your Wedding Day – a few handy tips!

  • If you are considering a strong lip for your wedding day make up- are you prepared to touch up throughout the day? Just take note that this look requires upkeep.
  • I highly recommend you have your lipstick/lipgloss colour you are wearing with you on the day (your bridesmaids job!) as you will need to top up your lips throughout the day as the cameras are always there !
  • If you have oily skin I recommend having a blotting powder with you to control the shine!
    Always use waterproof mascara !
  • Another product to have near by is concealer-in case you shed a few tears on your special day & are using tissues being used, obviously then you may need to reapply around your nose/eye area!
  • Some ladies like to reapply their blush to freshen up before they make their grand entrance into the reception room with their brand new husband !

* You may not need to use these products mentioned above but it is better to have them near by just in case..

Smokey Eye Bridal Beauty – Get the Look by Make-up Artist Sharon McCormack


Beautiful bride Lorraine Melia loves her make-up and wanted “a little bit more” than the natural look for her wedding day. Make-up Artist Sharon McCormack did just that using a gorgeous palette of purples to create a sultry eye paired with beautifully matte skin and a gorgeous plum lip to complement this soft smokey eyed look. Here Sharon tells us how she achieved the look and what tools you need to do the same!


How to Achieve Lorraine’s Look:

Skin – I prepped Lorraine’s skin with a primer from The Body Shop to create a healthy base. The foundation I used was MAC Studio Fix, a natural matte finish with medium-buildable coverage, a comfortable and long wearing foundation.


Eyes – For Lorraine’s sultry look I used MAC Brule as the base, its matte finish creates a neutral base and makes blending easier, I cover the entire lid up to the brow bone with this. I used MAC Sketch into the socket line blending it over the lid, this creates a deep socket line and contours the shape of the eye bringing out the natural feature of the eye. I also used MAC Blackberry lightly over the lid and above the socket line creating a perfectly harmonised blend of colour. Finally for the shadow, I lightly dusted MAC All That Glitters on top of the eye lid which opens up the eye.

I blended MAC Sketch underneath the eyes to create the sultry smokey eye and this also defines the eye giving it great shape. I used MAC Fascinating eye pencil into the waterline – this bright shade opens the eye, reflects nicely with the natural white in the eye creating a brighter eye for a daytime look. To line the upper lash line, I used Bobbi Brown Long Wear Gel in black, this emphasises the lash line without being too dramatic, and also has a beautiful finish to create a subtle impact to the eyes.

mac-sketchTo finish Lorraine’s eye make-up I applied full strip lashes, adding layers of black mascara to complete this luscious look!

Cheeks – To bring a hint of colour into Lorraine’s look, I applied MAC Warm Soul, a sunkissed colour and MAC Danity, a subtle coral shade, these colours combined worked brilliantly with Lorraine’s skin tone. I applied MAC Soft & Gentle on top of her cheekbones to lift & emphasise her natural cheek bone features.

mac_odyssey001Lips – Choosing a lip shade for Lorraine was simple, she wanted “  that little bit more” so instead of neutral/pink shades, I opt for MAC Odyssey which is a spiked up plum shade. I topped her lipstick with a gloss called MAC Pop Mode, this is a plum mix with bronze shimmer. These colours worked so well with Lorraine’s skin tone and colouring bringing out her beautiful features.

Lorraine’s Finished Look!





View more pictures from this wedding in my Portfolio section.