The Bridal Beauty Business Podcast

How to Create your Signature Bridal Look and Open your First Studio Space (ft @AKMakeup1)

Anna Karapetyan akmakeup1 Bridal Hair & Makeup/ Educator Based in South Florida Boca Raton

April 24, 2024

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Anna Karapetyan  akmakeup1
Bridal Hair & Makeup/ Educator Based in South Florida Boca Raton

Have you been scrolling through instagram and now you’re wondering if you need a signature bridal look in order to stand out and book more brides?

Join me as I connect with Bridal Beauty Specialist and Educator Anna Karapetyan – Ak Makeup

 Anna picked up a job at a spa to fund her BA education but quickly learned working with people, and helping them look and feel beautiful was more inline with her passion. After graduating she taught herself hair and makeup, launched  AK Makeup & Hair and never looked back.

During our chat Anna talks about:

  • how you can get experience when you’re a newbie
  • If you need to do both hair AND makeup do be a successful bridal makeup artist

  • Things to consider when you’re looking for your very first studio space 

  • If you really need a bridal team

  • The difference an admin assistant can make in your business 

  • Showing up on instagram, creating reels and lots of simple content ideas for you to use

Episode Notes for How to Create your Signature Bridal Makeup Look and Open your First Studio Space (ft @AKMakeup1)

How can I get more comfortable with doing makeup? I want to get more confident and skilled but I’m new. 

  • Retail and spas are a great starting point for learning how to work with different skin types, skin tones and textures. It can really help you build up your confidence as a makeup artist and get you use to working with bridal parties  

Is it difficult to do both bridal hair and makeup? How can I get comfortable doing hair and makeup for my brides?

  •  You need to value self-education and exploit everything possible to learn what’s available.

  • There are so many resources out there learning hair and makeup, it’s up to you to go and find them and just. Make it work for you.

  • Put in the time and effort to teach yourself what you can and when you need more guidance, invest in education or a mentor to help you along your journey

  • Everybody learns differently, if you need a little more hand-holding, invest in a course. 

  • Follow educators and peer educators on Facebook who would do bootcamps or post lots of tips. Zoom into pictures to see what they’re doing and then just like practice, practice, practice. Use family members and friends as Guinea pigs.

  • As Dale Carnegie said, if somebody asks you, if you can do something, say yes, and then we’ll learn how to do it and do it

  • In the end, it all comes down to practice. You can watch all the makeup tutorials, you can watch and read as much as you want. It won’t be until you start doing something repeatedly that you can become good at it. 

There’s so many bridal hair and makeup tutorials on YouTube, what should I focus on when I’m practicing? 

The goal should be to reach a point where you don’t necessarily need to know how to do something, but you have the building blocks. 

When you see a bridal look, you want to know and be confident enough to deconstruct it mentally and know what steps you take, in your own way to recreate that look. 

Remember the saying  you can read about getting abs all you want, but until you do the work, you’re not going to be able to get the abs

Can I still be successful if I’m only doing bridal makeup and not hair, or vice versa? 

  • From a client’s perspective, it’s more feasible when you have access to an artist who can do both hair and makeup at the same level but it’s not easy to find someone who is confident and skilled in both equally.

  • Ask yourself: is what you’re offering to the client at the level you want to present or if you would rather find someone to work with that is at that level 

  • They’re both equally important but if you’re doing them, you have to love them equally! 

When should you open your own makeup studio? How will I know I’m ready? 

  • You’ll feel like your ready. When you feel like it’s the right time to have a separate professional space to work from where you can meet clients, do projects and it makes sense for you financially.

How do I find the perfect studio space for my bridal makeup business? 

Decide what’s important to you. 

  • Do you want to be close to friends, family or other vendors in your industry?

  • What would you like the parking situation to look like?

  • Do you need to be close to a highway or is a beautiful location more important?

  • What will you be using your makeup studio for and how much space do you need?

  • Do you want natural window light?

  • What can you afford?

  • What’s your ideal studio layout and how much renovations can you afford? 

What should I consider before jumping into getting a studio space?

  • Finance is definitely a big one.

  • You need to weigh the pros and cons of having the space versus not having the space. 

  • How much you would be using that space physically. If you’re paying thousands of dollars , you only need to use it like twice a month, is it really worth it? 

How was the AK SPECIAL born? 

It’s just a hair and makeup look that I get requested quite often. People love that big hair, the big bouncy hair and like cultural makeup, and I just decided to call it something, like a menu – I gave that a menu name. So now when clients want that look, they’re like, I just want the AK Special. 

I don’t want to call it my signature look. It’s just something that is often requested of me. A lot of people create those looks too. It’s just a matter of labeling it to make it easier for people so be like – “that’s what I want!”

As a bridal makeup artist, do I need a “signature look” or have something that I’m known for or should I have a bunch of different looks in my portfolio and social media?

  • As an artist, you need to be versatile and you need to just be able to create different kinds of looks.

  • Give people the chance to choose from multiple things because everybody’s different. Often you’ll work with a client more than once so they get a chance to experience different looks that you can create

  • More than a signature, every artist has their own handwriting and that’s what sets you apart from other artists. 

  • When people see an image, they know it’s my work, because they can tell my handwriting, and my style. It’s not a specific look that I create, but just how that look has come together overall.

  • Focus on creating a clean, crisp, polished, finish more than creating a specific look.

What is branding? 

  • It’s how people talk about your brand, it’s the way that somebody notices your work. It’s the way that somebody feels when they look at your work, they feel when they’re speaking to you and talking to you 

  • Having a brand is really important and weather you do one signature look or have a multitude of looks… your “handwriting” is going to come through them and that’s going to kind of create your signature look and your signature audience. 

How do I create and grow a bridal hair and makeup team? Do I need a team? 

  • Managing a team is a lot of work and effort, it’s hard to find someone that will dedicate themselves through your brand the way that you dedicate yourself to your brand.

  • If you want to and you have a need for it – it’s very profitable! 

  • If you have trust issues, need to control every situation and want to avoid the anxiety – you don’t need to do it. 

  • You have to decide if it’s worth it for you or not. There’s a lot of team management, communications, admin and scheduling that goes into growing a bridal makeup team. And if that’s what you want to do, do it, you will make a great living at it, but you can also make a great living doing it by yourself and just focusing on the artistry side of it. 

I think I’m ready to hire an admin assistant or virtual assistant for my beauty business. What do I need to do?

  • Setup templates for everything! A template for sharing your availability with bridal makeup rates, a template for if you’re not available with a list of recommended artists, a template for price increases coming, one for inquiries when your calendar isn’t open for that year yet, a template for inquiries about education, all those things.

  • Understand it’ll take time for you two to find your groove and for them to understand how you like to work. 

I don’t know what to post on my bridal makeup Instagram page. How do you find inspiration for videos? 

  • If you come across a song you like and may want to use later, save it even if you don’t have a use for it now. 

  • If you see a video you love and want to recreate but don’t know how to relate it to your field yet, save it and you may have an ah-ha moment later

  • Jot down ideas in your notes and schedule to record some reels on a day where you’re already planning to wash your hair or do your makeup. 

  • Every now and then go through your saved sounds and play them back until something clicks. 

  • For makeup artists that want to show up better on instagram / tiktok and get into producing more video – batch recording is such an easy way. Schedule a day where you’re going to be putting on makeup and you have these two or three reels saved. Record them all and just change your shirt if you’d like to make it a bit different. 

Reel / TikTok Content Ideas for Makeup Artists:

  • share your kit,
  • Share  the products that you use
  • how you do certain look
  • How you use a certain product 
  • Product reviews (i bought this mascara, let’s try it out together)
  • Doing your own makeup when you get ready in the morning or are going out 
  • Product comparisons 

Remember that unless you’re training other artists, your ideal client or normal people. We watch a lot of other makeup artists doing these really cool product reviews, wear tests and showing these really big PR boxes. But our clients often just want a basic mascara tip.

I want to make hair, makeup, beauty reels and content but I don’t like being in front of the camera.

 You can do a reel where you’re getting into the car safely recording, going down the aisle, picking up a mascara cashing out and it’s like, one second, one second, one second, one second.

Opening the package, curling your lashes, putting on the mascara and then showing how it looks.


That is the easiest real there. You don’t even have to talk on it. You’re literally just doing one second, one second, one second.

Put on some captions over the real, do a voiceover. You can do that with different products all the time. Your views will definitely go up. Your engagement is going to go up and people are going to start to know you and see you because you want to get your face in there a little bit, right?

Clients are booking not only your makeup, but they’re booking you as a person as well. It’s really important to show up.


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