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  • Writer's pictureKatina Stephens

30 Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding, and Pay for the Makeup of Your Dreams

Updated: Dec 3, 2019

Weddings can be expensive! Planning a wedding can become one of the biggest financial decisions for a couple. One of the things I have noticed after a half-decade in the bridal industry, is that after making plans for the bigger wedding items (venue, dress, photography, etc.), many couples were already over budget, and too many brides have had to say "No" to their dream beauty packages.

Too many brides loose site of the fact that after you've eaten the food, the flowers have died, and the dj has left with their equipment, it's your wedding photos that will last forever!

In my 5+ years working with brides and their families, I am saddened by the number of young wives, mothers, aunts, or grandmothers who have chosen not to display their wedding photos for one reason or another. Many women, in my own experience, have left their wedding photos in a small album on a random bookshelf, simply because they were unhappy with the way they looked in their photos, for one reason or another.

It's become my mission to change that!

I've chosen to specialize in bridal makeup so I can help every client receive wedding photos that they can proudly display on their mantle for the rest of their lives!

While I could talk for five solid days regarding the benefits of hiring a professional hair stylist and makeup artist for your dream wedding day, I also recognize how important it can be stick to your budget! Because I am so passionate about helping my clients afford the beauty packages of their dreams, I've spent the last five years collecting ideas and writing down ways my clients, family, and friends have either earned or saved money while planning their weddings. I've picked 30 of the most popular ways you can save money on your wedding, and be able to afford the makeup artist of your dreams, who can help you create a one-of-a-kind look that is perfect for your wedding day, and will look amazing in those photos you'll be displaying in your new home together!*

30 Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding, and Pay for the Wedding Makeup of Your Dreams:

  1. Ask a relative - Sometimes grandmas, aunts, etc., want to give you something more special as a gift. Helping you look your absolute best for your wedding day is a great way to have them feel included in your day.

  2. Drive for Uber or Lyft - Sometimes just driving for a few days can equal enough for your entire wedding package! According to Uber Fare Estimator: At UberX rates in Salt Lake City of $0.45 base fare, $2.25 booking fee, $0.11 per min and $0.95 per mile — the average Salt Lake City trip pay out for a UberX driver is $13.39. Since Uber drivers on average make about 2 rides per hour, the hourly UberX driver earnings equate to approximately $26.78.

  3. List it on your registry - There are quite a few people who would rather buy you a beauty package over another set of sheets - which you could always buy for yourself later! There are websites designed to help you create your own registry, where you can add items from across different websites and services. One you could check out is Simple Registry.

  4. Get a Kickstarter/GoFundMe going - Sometimes there are people in your life who just want to help out! Let them know that they can help you out in a simple way, and it is especially great for family and friends who may not be able to attend the wedding, or be apart of the festivities due to health, distance, etc.

  5. Recycling - It’s good for the environment, and you can get some money back while you’re at it! Ask neighbors, friends, and family to “donate” their cans and bottles to you. You’d be surprised to find out how much you can gather! Contact your city to find the nearest facility to get reimbursed for your recycling.

  6. Sell something - Are you crafty? Do you have the ability to make something? Sell your creations to help pay for your wedding! You would be surprised how many people are willing to purchase to help you get your dream wedding.

  7. Give up Soda/Coffee outside of the house - Getting soda and/or coffee at the drive through can be a significant daily/weekly/monthly expense. Buying one 16-ounce cup of coffee a day for 30 days costs you on average $65/month. Consider getting your caffeine fix at home, and save money for your makeup instead!

  8. Try Babysitting/Nannying - There are lots of parent’s looking for a night out. Offer to babysit, or find a short-term nannying position. The average going rate for nannies in Utah is about $10/hr. is a website that I have had personal success with in my own life.

  9. Cut out the ‘plus ones’ - This is by FAR one of the easiest ways to save money for your wedding, and your desired beauty packages. The average wedding in the state of Utah costs $13,301, and the average number of guests is 140. Statistically speaking, at least 10% of the guests in attendance at your reception will be people who you don’t know - your cousin’s brand-new girlfriend, your husband’s colleague’s roommate, etc. These are people who you wouldn't even invite to your own house for dinner, and they will likely not even say “hello” to you at your own reception. You will be paying, on average, $1,330 for people who you don’t even know to come and have a free dinner at your reception! Consider spending that money on something else instead!

  10. Pay yourself back - Guests love to give you cash, checks, or gift cards as wedding gifts. Pay yourself back after the fact with money left over from your gifts/gift returns!

  11. DIY what you’re not particular about - Don’t care so much about your guest book, or the decor behind your gift table? Make it yourself! Do-it-yourself projects can be a great way to save money on the aspects of your wedding that aren’t high on your priority list, AND it can give such a personal touch to your entire wedding.

  12. Find a family member/friend who has a cabin, vacation home, etc - If you know someone with a cabin or vacation home, consider approaching them to ask if you could stay there for your honeymoon (it would make a great gift from them!), and skip out on having to pay for accommodations during that time.

  13. Stay at an AirBnB for your honeymoon - Don’t know of anybody who has access to a place to stay? Consider finding an AirBnB in a location you would like to visit. You would be surprised how many places you can find for far less than a night at a hotel, and sometimes they are even in a better location!

  14. Buy a simple dress, then add custom lace, beads, etc. to make it unique, and truly yours - Don’t have a vision for your perfect dress? Try buying a simple dress, then adding custom pieces to it with the help of a seamstress (bonus saving points if someone you know personally can help you with this). You can turn a simple dress into a beautiful one-of-a-kind masterpiece with just a few simple changes, and you can do it for an off-the-rack price!

  15. Pet sitting/Dog walking - Many people would rather place their pets with a friend or loved one, over a random boarding house when they go out of town. Offer to watch someone’s pet to help them out, earn some money on the side, and have a new furry companion for a weekend! Win, win, win!

  16. Design/Print your own wedding invites - There are many websites where you can easily create your own wedding invites, and even have them printed on the cheap! Your invitations end up at the bottom of a pile, or in the trash anyway, why not save some money on a portion of the wedding which will not be kept forever anyway?

  17. Garage Sale - Do you have extra clothes, purses, shoes, board games, dvd’s, etc. that you would like to get rid of? Sell off your extras, make room for your married life together, and make a little money on the side! Combine with others in your area, and set up a big multi-house/multi-family garage sale that will attract a lot more shoppers.

  18. Bake Sale - Everybody loves a warm plate of homemade brownies, cookies, or brightly decorated cake pops. Offer bakes sales a few weekends a month. Your material cost should be rather low, and there’s no limit to the amount of income you could gather by offering yummy goods to your neighbors, family and friends!

  19. Odd Jobs - Rake leaves, shovel snow, cut grass, walk dogs, wash windows, clean carpets. I have seen great success with brides offering to do odd jobs to raise money for their wedding - many received payment far above what they asked for, because people were more than happy to help them raise money for their dream wedding day.

  20. Become a “mystery shopper” - Get paid to shop and report your findings! Check out Second to None, which operates in many cities throughout the state of Utah.

  21. Spare room - Have a spare room in your home or apartment? Offer it up as a short-term rental, or AirBnB for those looking to come to your area.

  22. Weekly meal list - Save money on your groceries by making up weekly meal lists, and STICKING TO THEM while shopping. Many people can spend hundreds of extra dollars on food they gather while aimlessly wandering around the grocery store. Create clear lists and stick to them - or consider doing grocery pick ups to skip going into the store all together!

  23. Piggy bank - Drop your extra cash and coins into a piggy bank. You’d be surprised how much you could collect in just a month!

  24. Set money aside every week - Do you have some time to save before your wedding? Consider creating a savings plan, and put money aside each week for your dream beauty package!

  25. Gym memberships - Are you registered to a gym? Do you even go as often as you want? Hiking trails, bike paths and public parks are free! Some community centers allow you to work out for free, or for very small fees. Consider finally dropping that gym membership, and find other uses with that extra money!

  26. Carpool - Save money on gas and carpool to work or school. Bonus points: if you aren’t the one driving, you could get some extra work done on the ride!

  27. “Service” for gifts - Instead of your upcoming birthday or holiday gifts, consider giving them a service instead of a purchased gift. Offer to babysit their kids, or a special service or hobby you do.

  28. Part-time work - Consider getting a part-time or temporary job until you have the funds needed. Especially around the holidays, you can make a lot of money helping out at retail stores!

  29. Take advantage of sales - Have something you are planning on purchasing for your wedding, or even your everyday life? Do some research, and find out when that item may go on sale in the near future. Sometimes it’s just next week, and you can get it at 50% off!

  30. Use your imagination - Think outside of the box! There are countless of other ideas that could help you save money for your dream wedding, and your dream beauty packages. Come up with some ways that could easily be fit into your daily routines, and will help you save those nickels and dimes (and hopefully even tens and twenties!) for your big day!

Let me know if any of these savings idea have worked for you, or if you came up with a unique way to save those dollars while you were wedding planning!

*Disclaimer: These are just ideas to help you save money, this is by no means a guarantee of money being saved or earned. Please use caution and do full research when using any third party to help you save or earn money during your wedding planning process.

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