With the approach of the wedding season, brides-to-be will no doubt be busy with last-minute preparations. But now is the time for the star of the show to concentrate on herself and make sure she will look her best at the big event. To avoid a make-up catastrophe on the day, Kathy Carroll Lea, make-up artist at Toni & Guy, recommends a prenuptial consultation and make-up trial ($1,200). During the 90-minute to two-hour session, she goes through the client's whole wedding look - the style, colour and neckline of her dress, her hair, jewellery and accessories - and gets the low-down on her cosmetic habits, likes and dislikes. Encouraging her to bring along pictures of preferred colours and styles, Lea works with the bride's natural look and unless the client wants to appear particularly 'made up', she keeps them looking like themselves - only more elegant and polished. 'You have to look at make-up with a photographic eye because you tend not to look your best in photos wearing normal day-time make-up,' she says. 'Wedding make-up tends to be heavier than normal so it is good to have a trial run to get used to it.' Lea also suggests brides-to-be have the make-up practice just before a dress fitting so they can make sure the two looks complement one another. At the end of the consultation, she gives clients a list of the colours she applies - Tigi Cosmetics are used - which is handy to give to another make-up artist if the bride is getting married abroad or for DIY-ing on the day. When it comes to the occasion itself, Lea will either go to the bride's home or hotel if it is centrally located or the bride can go to the Toni & Guy salon ($2,200, including the rehearsal). For details or appointments, tel: 2801 7870 or Lea on 9522 2246. Calvin Lim, make-up artist at Jacques Dessange (tel: 2869 7789), also prefers to put wedding belles through their paces before the day. Because he feels the key to wedding style success is the complete look, he asks the bride-to-be to describe her gown from its cut to its exact colour as well as her hairstyle and accessories. 'Some brides need several looks because of changing outfits throughout the day, so it is essential to get as much information as possible to ensure the make-up works each time,' he says. A one-hour cosmetic rehearsal costs $500, with a hairstyle trial taking a further 30 minutes and costing an additional $400. If the wedding is an early one, Lim can come to the bride's house on the day ($600 an hour); alternatively, brides can go to the salon beforehand ($1,000). If you prefer to do your own make-up, Lim will teach you the know-how in a 90-minute one-to-one lesson. Although it will set you back $1,600, you will receive $800-worth of Jacques Dessange cosmetics and skills that will stand you in good stead. Bridal make-up at Clarins (tel: 2315 3271) at The Peninsula hotel can also be a hands-on affair. After a consultation regarding colour and look, the make-up artist uses Clarins cosmetics to transform half of the client's face. The client then copies what has been done on the other side ($650/one hour). If that doesn't appeal, the bride-to-be can lie back and relax while the make-up artist does the work, again following a detailed chat about dress, accessories and ideal look. This also costs $650 an hour and a further $650 for a salon sitting on the day. If your budget doesn't run to a make-up artist or lesson, cosmetic queen and supermodel favourite Bobbi Brown advises the following: to look your best in photos, apply make-up as if you were attending a black-tie event with everything stronger - even for a day wedding. Use waterproof mascara to prevent emotions getting the better of your look and dust bronzing powder on your neck and chest as well as on your face. Carry one great lipstick with you for touch-ups throughout the day and avoid pale or brown lip colours, especially if you are wearing white because they can wash out your face in photos. And never experiment with a novel or tricky technique on the big day because any tears you shed that day should only be ones of joy.