Kirsten Murphy Make up

We asked one of my favourite hair and make up artists, Kirsten Murphy, to give us a bit more information about her company.

How long have you been in the wedding industry?

I have been a Makeup Artist and hairstylist for 15 years and I have been in the wedding industry for the last 11 years.

What made you get into weddings specifically? 

I love the joy and the excitement of a wedding day and there is something so special about being a part of it. It’s is so rewarding helping a bride feel like the best version of herself for one of the most important days of her life.

Do you have to study to be a hair and makeup artist?

These days, with all the content out there, lots of makeup artists and hairstylists are self taught. I however, did a makeup course and a few hair courses throughout the years. I found that I learnt the most in my early days of being a makeup artist when I worked at a retail makeup store. The best experience I got was practicing on different people, different skin tones and different ages. Makeup and Hair styling is constantly evolving, so I never really stop learning.

How big is your team and how important is your team on a wedding day?

The size of my team depends on the size of the wedding party. It can range between two and 4 artists. I work with wonderful colleagues, who have the same level of experience as me and we share a very similar style. For bigger weddings it is important for me to have a team to share the load and the fun 🙂

What is the average cost for a bride and bridesmaids?  

The average cost for bridal makeup and hair is R2000 (The trial is an additional cost) for each member of the bridal party, its R800 per face and R750 per hairstyle. Travel to venues outside of my 50km radius is an additional cost per km.

What trends do you see for hair and make up in 2021? 

I foresee a continuation of the very natural, effortless trend. I feel that we have spent so much time in lockdown, wearing very little makeup and very seldomly styling our hair, that I’m sure people have really learnt to embrace their natural selves.  So I think there will be a huge focus on minimal makeup, but just enough to enhance the features (which is my favourite makeup style to do!)

Do you have a minimum spend when it comes to weddings? 

I don’t have a minimum spend, but If a bride is wanting to book me just for herself, I would encourage that she books me for both makeup and hair.

How many weddings do you do a year, and would you ever do more than one wedding on a wedding day?

The amount of weddings that I do varies from year to year. In the Summer months it could be 2 weddings a week. I hardly ever do more than one wedding on a day as I find juggling timelines and traveling from venue to venue can be very stressful. 

I would love to explain to couples what exactly goes into hair and make up prep for a wedding day, can you give us a bit more insight on this? 

I always encourage brides to give me a few references of makeup and hair styles that they like so that I can be prepared on the day of the trial. It is important that brides know which styles suit their personality and who they are. For example if you are a loose hair kinda gal, I wouldn’t suggest a stiff updo for your wedding day, because you won’t necessarily feel like yourself. I am happy to suggest what I think would look good on you, but ultimately you need to tell me what suits who you are and what you feel most comfortable with. I will arrange to do your trial a couple of weeks (sometimes a day or two) before the wedding day and that’s when we meet for the first time and do a mockup of makeup and hair. Prior to the wedding day I will create a timeline for yourself and your wedding party to ensure that everything runs smoothly on the wedding day. 

Do you do any extras, like lashes, extensions etc? 

I do false lashes at an additional cost and I have recommendations for reputable lash extension technicians if that’s what the bride would require. I enjoy working with hair extensions and I am always happy for the bride to bring hers along. If clip in hair extensions need to be sourced, I can do so.

How has the lockdown and the corona virus pandemic impacted your work? 

It has impacted my work hugely! My last few weddings of the past season were all either cancelled or postponed and the fashion industry had shut down completely. However,  I chose to look at all of this in a positive light and I believe that everything works out as it should. Slowly but surely we will get through this and we will discover a new way of doing things. As for the way I do my job, I have always maintained a very hygienic standard, so I will be ready to work as soon as we can, armed with my alcohol spray!

Your top 5 tips for brides with regards to hair and make up

1. Choose an artist who suits your style. 

2. Remember that the quote you are receiving from your artist includes the time spent on emails back and forth, the time creating the quote, the travel time to your trial and your wedding day and your artist’s invaluable experience.

3. It’s ok to say that you don’t want to wear pretty pink eyeshadow on your wedding day and rather a natural eye and a dark berry lip. There are no rules when it comes to the look that you have in mind for your wedding day.

4. It is ok to do a trial with an artist before booking them, in fact, it’s ok to do a trial with a few different artists before deciding which one you will go with for your wedding day.

5. Your wedding day makeup and hair should be a more polished, more enhanced version of the natural you, you shouldn’t look like anyone other than yourself and you should feel beautiful.

If you would like to get in contact with Kirsten, you can pop over to her website: