• Katy Reddell

Airbrush vs. Traditional Foundation: Which is better?

Updated: Nov 18, 2020

Wondering about which type of foundation you should wear for your wedding day shouldn’t be something you stress about. We want you to look AND feel good on your wedding day, and this often starts with being confident in your foundation choice. So, I took the time to break down the pro’s and con’s for both traditional and airbrush foundation:

First, let’s get a few things straight here…

  • NOT all airbrush foundations are the same. Just like there are thousands of variations of traditional foundation (liquid, cream, or powder), there are many different airbrush foundations. We are positive that we can find you the right foundation to match the look you are going for!

  • The airbrush foundation we use can be made to give you the dewy/hydrated look, natural, or even matte. It all depends on which powders and sprays we set it with!

  • Most companies “don’t like” airbrush because it’s more expensive, requires more equipment, and requires more cleaning supplies. It is also much harder to find artists willing to invest in it since it takes time to learn the technique. However, my team and I don’t shy away from a challenge. If airbrush foundation is what the bride thinks that’s what she needs to look absolutely fabulous on her wedding day, then we are more than prepared to do that for her!

  • Most brides think that because celebrities aren’t always airbrushed for the camera, then they don’t need to be either. However, that isn’t necessarily true. Celebrities who use makeup instead of airbrushing are usually just preparing for a photoshoot or a fairly short evening event. Their makeup doesn’t have to hold up through the happy tears, Texas heat and humidity, or the smile lines sure to appear from smiling all day on one of the most special days of their life. These things aren’t a problem with airbrush foundation! The airbrush foundation we use is water-resistant and sure to hold up through hours of dancing and photos, and of course, all the while making the bride feel even more beautiful in her own skin.

  • Most properly done makeup applications will show up well in photographs, but airbrush tends to provide a more flawless look. That is one of the reasons why I love airbrush foundation - it makes brides’ skin look picture perfect AND holds the look for the entire wedding.

Benefits of Airbrushing:

  • ZERO chance of seeing streaks, smears, or a cutoff line with the foundation. Rain or shine, your foundation is sure to look perfect in person and photos. FYI - we always airbrush down the neck to make the look appear even more natural!

  • Easy to CUSTOM mix the perfect foundation shade & adjust undertones such as red or yellow to get the perfect match.

  • EXTREMELY lightweight and buildable. Whether the bride wants sheer coverage, full coverage, or somewhere in between, airbrush foundation can achieve any look desired without your face feeling heavy with makeup.

  • 12-15 hour wear, water-resistant (will not streak/ run with tears or sweat), & very gentle on all skin types. If you’re a happy crier or expect to dance your wedding night away, airbrush foundation might be the right choice for you!

  • Can set and apply highlighter, contour, bronzer, and blush over the foundation. Like I said earlier, airbrushing is SO easy to work with when it comes to creating a bride’s desired look!

  • Can accomplish a matte look with specific powders and setting sprays, or create a more dewy look just depending on the products used. Just let us know what look you’re going for, and we can make it happen!

  • Transfer resistant— meaning it won’t come off on your hands or clothes if you touch your face. This is KEY if you’re someone who touches their face often, even without realizing it. Being transfer resistant also keeps you from worrying about messing your look up even if you accidentally touch it, or if a piece of cake gets smushed on your face by a special someone…

Downsides of Airbrushing:

  • Some companies up-charge for airbrush due to the equipment and skill needed for perfect application. We are happy to say that we are unlike most companies and do NOT up-charge for airbrush!

  • It can be difficult to get in the crevices of very mature or aged skin. If you fall under this kind of skin type, we suggest a thin coat of traditional foundation and then a blow over of airbrush to lock in your wedding day look.

  • You have to use specific primers and concealers underneath the airbrush foundation. We have a few favorites that we usually recommend.

  • Requires more knowledge and skill with products and equipment to execute the perfect look. But don’t worry, those of us on my team who would apply airbrush foundation are highly trained and ready to make your skin look FLAWLESS with the foundation of your choice.

Benefits of Traditional Foundation:

  • Wide variety of foundations on the market to choose from. If there’s a particular one you like more than others, we are more than happy to work with your foundation of choice.

  • Easier to find artists and companies to do traditional makeup. Even though my team and I offer both, it is typically easier to find an artist to do traditional foundation application rather than airbrush.

  • You can use a brush or beauty blender to easily apply, in comparison to the applicator used for airbrush foundation.

  • Traditionally less expensive than airbrush foundation. However, for me and my team, our price for both traditional and airbrush foundation is $95.

Downsides of Traditional makeup applications:

  • Typically harder to find formulas that are as long wearing as airbrush. If you’re planning a longer wedding, traditional foundation might not be the choice for you. Traditional foundation usually starts to wear off within a couple of hours, whereas airbrush can hold a look up to 12+ hours.

  • Can be easy to see where you blended the foundation into the neckline. This isn’t a problem for everyone, but definitely something to consider for pictures or if it’s just something a bride struggles with when it comes to her own makeup!

  • Some foundations oxidize over the day (meaning they change tone or get slightly darker). This is also something to consider for pictures. These also tend to smear easily and crease (hello smile lines!!) faster than airbrush foundation.

Hopefully this helped you to make a confident decision in what foundation you believe suits your skin type/ wedding day best. Like I said earlier, a bride feeling confident and beautiful in her own skin is our TOP priority. Whichever foundation style you choose, my team and I are so excited to help bring your dream wedding look to life! Do you have more questions about which foundation is right for you? Shoot me an email at Be sure to subscribe for the best tips on bridal hair and makeup and wedding day tips and tricks.


Katy Reddell

Instagram: @katyreddellbeauty


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