Sophistication and simplicity touched every portion of AJ Nicholas and Dali Belkhiria’s Lake Como wedding this spring—including the bride’s fresh-faced beauty aesthetic. Nicholas, the head of marketing at Charlotte Tilbury Beauty’s North America division, tells The Knot that pulling off the perfect palette required practice, product exposure, and of course, access to an in-house makeup artist at her company.
The bride, 32, luckily started the new job three weeks before her wedding day, and was primed (literally!) for the occasion. The bride and the groom, a Nespresso sales manager, exchanged vows in May before 80 of their closest friends and family members, opting for a scenic lakefront ceremony at Villa Regina Teodolinda.
“We only went to Lake Como once before the actual wedding,” Nicholas tells The Knot. “So when we went to look at venues, I knew I needed to do a makeup trial then since it would be our only time in Italy… The challenge was that I hadn’t bought my dress or landed any styling elements yet. So I just had the makeup artist do a standard smoky eye with a pale pink lip. Then, I gave her more direction closer to the actual wedding.”
During that same visit, the couple secured another key component—a planner. “As soon as we landed on having the wedding in Lake Como, we knew we needed a wedding planner to help us since it was a destination wedding,” Nicholas explains. “We chose to go with the Lake Como Wedding Planner… Rachel and Leonora were a dream to work with.”
The couple wanted the decor to reflect the sweeping, picturesque setting itself. “We wanted to keep everything fairly simple,” she explains, “so we really just had some light petals down the aisle, a baby’s breath flower arch, and fairly neutral-colored centerpieces.” (All designed by another key Como-based vendor, Figli dei Fiori.)
Ultimately, Nicholas chose to walk down the aisle in an elegant strapless piece by Anna Maier (“I loved every detail of it!” she says), along with Stuart Weitzman heels and jewelry offered by her previous employer, Rent the Runway.
Her wedding day makeup formula—inspired by Blake Lively’s dewey-but-pretty appearance at Cannes in 2016—was originally done by Tilbury herself and later re-created by an in-house Tilbury artist.
“The week before the wedding, I used the Charlotte Tilbury Dry Sheet Mask several times and also the Multi-Miracle Glow Multitasking Balm,” Nicholas says. “These were my daily staples the week before the wedding… I also always use Magic Cream and Magic Eye Rescue.”
Leading up to the nuptials, a colleague in the makeup department helped the bride finesse her look. “One of our top makeup artists from Team Tilbury kindly offered to do my makeup—almost a second trial,” she explains. “Then, I could test which shades I wanted to use and get all of her amazing tips. We decided to channel Blake Lively at Cannes… A very natural and glowing look.”
Como-based makeup artist Jennifer Bradurn executed the final look on Nicholas before the ceremony, solely using Charlotte Tilbury products. Here’s the bride’s step-by-step description below.
Step 1: Prep the Face
Charlotte Tilbury’s Magic Cream, a moisturizer with hydrating ingredients, served as a base. It was then topped by Wonderglow, a light-reflecting primer that softens the complexion especially against harsh lighting in photos.
Step 2: Apply Foundation, Concealer and More
Nicholas applied Tilbury’s Magic Foundation, followed by the Retoucher, a hydrating concealer that smooths out skin. To counter-balance any jet lag, the Mini Miracle Eye Wand obliterated any signs of dark circles and imperfections, giving the bride a youthful and well-rested look.
Step 3: Contour and Blush
To work with the scenic backdrop, the artist applied Tilbury’s Filmstar Bronze & Glow in Fair to Medium. “It was the best way to get an incredible contoured look,” says the bride.
The bronzer was followed by a rose-gold and peach-hued blush in the form of Tilbury’s Beach Stick in the “Moon Beach” color.
Charlotte Tilbury Beach Stick in Moon Beach, $45, CharlotteTilbury.com
Step 4: Define the Eyes
It takes a village… of products, starting with Tilbury’s Eyes to Mesmerize, a long-lasting cream shadow, in a champagne pink color called “Jean.” The bride also packed the brand’s Luxury Palette in The Sophisticate, which features cream, tan, taupe and chocolate colors to create a timeless look.
The makeup artist then lined her eyes with the Classic Eyeliner Pencil in Audrey followed by the Full Fat Lash Mascara to boost her lashes.
Step 5: Set the Lips
The bride perfected her pout with the Matte Revolution Lipstick in Liv it Up, along with the Lip Cheat liner in Pillow Talk. “Every celeb lives for this product,” Nicholas says of the liner.
Step 6: Make the Body Glow
Nicholas applied Tilbury’s Supermodel Body to create a beautifully bronze glow as she glimmered down the aisle. “This is the number one product every bride should use on her wedding day,” the bride resolutely states. “Most of my friends have typically gotten spray tans prior to their weddings but because ours was in Italy and it’s not common there… I still wanted to make sure I had a beautiful glow the day of the wedding, but was worried about self-tan products that would rub off on my dress.” Thankfully, it stayed put.
Charlotte Tilbury Supermodel Body, $65, CharlotteTilbury.com