Vendor Review: MUA Mona of b:blunt

Mona working her magic
Mona working her magic

You’ve seen the pictures. And I’ve got only positive feedback about my makeup! Then again, do brides ever get negative comments on how they are looking?

I got my Sangeet, Wedding and Reception makeup from Mona at b:blunt, Greater Kailash 2, New Delhi. They charge INR 9,000* for smaller functions, and INR 14,500* for the big ones – if you come to GK2 to get your makeup done. If you want them to travel to your venue, you pay double. *figures and facts true as of October, 2012

What did I think of the makeup? Well, read on to find out!

Why I chose them

I’ve been going to b:blunt for haircuts since my Mumbai days. They’re fantastic with hair! Mona gave me haircuts in the months leading up to my wedding. I totally trusted her with helping me grow out my hair to the length I wanted! 🙂

While researching makeup artists online, I came across the Bridal Package on the b:blunt website. Whaaa? b:blunt does makeup? I need to check this out!

In the meantime, I was browsing wedding videos online. And there was one video where I loved the bride’s makeup and hairstyle. And guess whose face flashed on the video? Mona’s! I just got to see footage of Mona making a bride look good to awe-freakin-some! I loved what she did with her hair, and the makeup was so subtle! I knew I needed to give b:blunt a serious chance at being chosen as my MUA now.

But I was still not a 100% sure. So I went around asking anyone and everyone if they knew how b:blunt was for wedding makeup. I even asked thedelhibride readers in this post!

My sister knows one of the hairdressers at b:blunt – Sumit (who is super talented btw; trusted him with giving my groom a haircut right before our wedding!) So I asked her to ask him his honest opinion on how good b:blunt’s makeup truly is. And he gave it a huge thumbs up. He said Mona did really subtle makeup, and he’d never seen a bride look garish once Mona was done with her. That gave me some more confidence in Mona’s makeup skills.

I visited the salon finally, mainly to check out their portfolio. There were only 2 or 3 pictures they showed me, but the bride looked nice. I had gone with my parents, and I quickly discussed the charges with them. My dad said, “You seem satisfied. And it looks like you’ve done your fair share of research. I’m booking them right now.” We paid the advance, and so the search for a makeup artist finally ended.

What I loved

  • Subtle makeup – This is not easy to find. And Mona scored major brownie points with this – natural looking makeup was THE most important thing I was looking for, and she passed the test with flying colours! Thankfully, those colours were not on my eyelids 😉 The best MUAs are those who make you look like yourself (no major transformation, unless that’s what you want), but a better version of yourself. Bascially, MFBB (My Face But Better) – check!
  • Listens to the bride – She was very willing to give me what I wanted and even said, “it’s your day, we have to make sure YOU are happy with the way you look!” And she kept asking me every 30 minutes if everything was ok and to speak up whenever I felt uncomfortable with the kind of makeup/hair she was doing.
  • Open to suggestions – When I told her on Day 3 that I wanted to use my own primer because I felt like hers was not holding my undereye makeup well, she did not even flinch. Just smiled at me and said, “sure, use yours!” An MUA could have very easily gotten offended and maybe even spoken in an annoyed manner after such a suggestion. But she was so accommodating and sweet about it!
  • Calm in a crisis – On Day 1, she realized she’d left her eyeliner at a wedding in Dehradun from the day before! On Day 2, I left my wedding jewellery at home, and the dupatta turned out to be shorter than what she’s used to for draping. On Day 3, she needed to re-do some parts of my hairstyle that delayed our schedule a little bit. None of this even fazed Mona. She kept a smile on her face and tackled everything in a very calm manner. Which is God-sent for a bride on her wedding day! As if there isn’t enough stress and tension all around (AND inside us!) that day, the last thing a bride needs is a nervous MUA.
  • Photography-friendly – The makeup photographed well, which is as important as it looking great off camera. This could also be because of my awesome wedding photographer, Tarun Chawla, but we’ll never know 🙂
  • Great with hair – I loved my hairstyles on all days except the Reception (it was good, but just not…perfect). Mona didn’t say to me “you want such a simple hairstyle for your Sangeet?” Instead, she worked with what I wanted, and gave me something I loved! And although I needed some convincing to get a bun on wedding day (I was afraid to look like an aunty), Mona kept her promise and made me look my age with a modern-looking bun that she even put a flower in!
  • Let’s you borrow lipstick – Mona let me borrow the lipstick and gloss she used on me on all 3 functions. That was such a life-saver for me, because I needed to re-apply the lip products on all 3 days and she was not all “urgggghh ok take it” but all “sure! Of course! Take it!”
  • Gets you ready on time – She asked me what time my function started, and by what time I’d like to leave the salon for the venue. She then added buffer time (on her own) before deciding the time I should arrive at the salon. This ensured that I reached the venue for all functions pretty close to the decided time of arrival. And they say brides are always late! Well, b:blunt brides are not 🙂

What I wasn’t a fan of

  • Unblended undereye makeup – mine did not look like it was blended well. True, only I seemed to notice it (or maybe everyone else was too nice to say anything?) but when I looked in the mirror, I could see the layer of makeup under my eyes and I had to make an effort to ignore it on all 3 days. But the makeup on the rest of the face was blended well enough, so I’m not sure why the undereye part stood out like that. It also seemed to be melting as the function went on. Was it because I have oily skin? But shouldn’t the MUA know the bride’s skin type and use products accordingly? Anyway, I brought along MAC Prep+Prime on my Reception and used that on the under eye area instead of Studio Fix (which is what Mona was using) and I felt the makeup stayed on better that day.
  • No waterproof makeup – According to my sister my kajal had “split” by the end of my Sangeet. I asked Mona the next day if she had used waterproof eye makeup, and she said “no, and even waterproof makeup spills a little anyway.” Well, countless articles talk about how using waterproof makeup is extremely important for wedding functions. So, I honestly didn’t even get what she meant by that. Anyway, a trick to keeping your kajal intact is applying eyeliner smack under the line where your kajal ends. This will lock it in, and you won’t have to bother with panda eyes. And you, yes you, please insist your MUA uses waterproof makeup. Edit: Sorry about this one – Mona just informed me that she did, in fact, use waterproof makeup! Oops! In the middle of getting ready for my own wedding, I seem to have misunderstood what she said – she just meant to say that even waterproof makeup is not 100% going to stay put. So, Mona DOES use waterproof makeup!
  • Forgot the basics – She forgot to apply foundation on my neck on Day 1, which is probably rule #1 in the book on The Basics of Applying Foundation. It didn’t seem to be part of her normal routine, which surprised me a little. So on Days 2 and 3, I made sure I reminded her. Although to cut her some slack, she used just the right shade on me, and so in the photographs there is no difference between the colour of my face and my neck.
  • Draping issues – I wasn’t too happy with the way my dupatta was draped on Days 1 & 2 – but then again, it could’ve been my own fault because I hadn’t taken a picture along of how it should be draped. And Mona openly accepted that she wasn’t good at tying knots – so my sister ended up tying the knots around my waist (when I wore the lehengas) and on my choli (on the Sangeet). This is obviously a very teeny tiny issue, but in the interest of full disclosure, I’m going to tell you everything, even the minuscule points!
  • Highlighter use – This is a personal preference – I highly limit highlighter use on my face. I feel it makes my face look oily in photographs (like it did on my Roka). So I asked Mona to not add too much highlighter on my face. And she ended up adding some in the base! Which I felt made my whole face look overdone on the Sangeet. So I had to ensure that on the remaining 2 days she didn’t add highlighter to the base. The thing to learn from some of these points is – you must know what works for you and what you prefer. You have to help the makeup artist help you! So go prepared with your knowledge and research as well.

About the Salon

  • They were very friendly, and helpful. And I had a constant stream of Hide & Seek biscuits and water coming my way. With a smile!
  • They were very accommodating with the photographers who came along with me – allowed them to click non-stop and didn’t cause any issues when we were taking posed pictures in the waiting area and even on their staircase!
  • A few of my family members got their hair styled at b:blunt, and each and every one of them turned out fabulous! Love, love, love the hair stylists here! Specially, Sumit!
  • The salon itself makes for a beautiful backdrop! The wallpaper of bookshelves, sunlight streaming in, the stylish sofas and the amazingly decorated powder room! Your photographer will find it easy to take great shots without having to worry about the background. Point added – Thanks Tarun!
  • b:blunt charges the same amount for Wedding & Reception, which I thought was unfair – I was wearing a jacket lehenga with a dupatta that wrapped neatly on my wrist with a hook (the other end was already stitched onto the jacket) on my Reception. Which basically meant I needed zero help with draping, no complicated hairstyle and I was done in a shorter period of time. I think they should have taken that into consideration while billing me – Reception should have cost the same as the Sangeet. They did give me a discount overall – anyone who books an MUA for 3 functions or more gets that discount – but I would’ve been a much happier bride if the discount was after charging the same on Reception as Sangeet.

Would I go here again?

YES! I still go to Sumit whenever I want my hair blow dried and styled. He’s seriously amazing with hair. My SIL even went to the Vasant Vihar b:blunt to get ready on our Reception and she looked smashing! Hair AND makeup was fantastic! b:blunt itself is great, and Mona – I’d come to you for my bridal makeup in the blink of an eye! We just need to figure out what went wrong with the under eye makeup 🙂

Have a look at the pictures of my makeup and hair on all three functions and tell me what you think. Click on the thumbnails to view larger images.

Photographs by Tarun Chawla Photography

If you’d like to read up some more on the lessons I’ve learnt regarding Bridal MUAs and getting ready on the big day, you can have a look at The Ultimate Wedding Makeup Guide. And just this morning, Mehak of Peaches & Blush has put up a fantastic post on How To Choose a Bridal Makeup Artist – it’s a must read!

What do you think of Mona’s skills as a Makeup Artist? What did you love? What didn’t you like?

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25 Comments

  1. Apart from makeup, Interiors are also nice and bridal room is spacious, I think it was nice that they didn’t take too many bookings and there was ample room in parlor to roam around. Usually parlor have 10~12brides each day and hence they dnt pay individual attention.

    Extra brownie points from my side to B:blunt! very friendly as compared to Plum which is next door, they create huge issue with male photographers >_<

    ps: post some pics of interior! the sofa and the bookshelf wallpaper…

    Like

    1. Omg!you are such a lifesaver, I am having an extremely unplanned and hurried engagement this saturday after much opposition from both families. But finally, we are getting married 🙂 everything got decided today itself and it is only now that i have started thinking about the dress, hair etc.Pls pls pls help me if possible. After reading your post, I called b:blunt and Mona is available. I want extremely subtle makeup, should i book her, whatsay?

      Like

  2. thank you!!! this post came as an answer to my prayers…. just this very moment i was researching online for MUAs, called a few, liked a few, hated a few… and was praying that you would put a review soon of b:blunt! and the very next minute, a new post alert comes in my mailbox with your review!!

    Like

    1. Oh, i just sent you a mail telling you that the post is up! 🙂 Well, I’m glad it will be useful to you! You’re getting married end of this year, right? Which month?

      Like

  3. Sumit is pretty awesome as a hair stylist. I’ve been going to him for the past few months abd my fair looks great.. He’s the one who made me really fall in love with my natural wavy hair, giving me a style that match me ditch my hair iron for good! Plus he’s not one of the hairstylists who only want to chop off the hair length..

    Like

  4. Personally, dont know why you are not a fan of your reception haristyle. I thought it was fresh and avoided the usual super grown up look brides tend to get on their functions. You are a young bride and your haristyles show just that.

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    1. I loved the hairstyle from the back, but not so much from the front. Didn’t suit my face as much as I would’ve liked it to. But then again, I’m very fussy like that!

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  5. Hey…I was wondering what do you mean when you say you can keep your kajal intact by applying eyeliner smack under the line where your kajal ends…I thought kajal and eyeliner were almost the same things…do u mean locking it in with a liquid eyeliner?

    Like

  6. I am totally in love with your wedding look. The make up is brilliant. The post is super informative and very well written.
    Thanks a lot for sharing.

    XOXO
    Manali
    secretsofmissdaydreamer.blogspot.in

    Like

    1. just came across this blog recently and i must say very informative and very well written …. and you look great in ur pics 🙂 hey any idea if lakme’s air brush makeup is good? i enquired about it and they seem to be doing this for 10k . any reviews??

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  7. Hello 🙂 can’t thank u enough for this blog! It’s a great starting point for as ignorant a bride-to-be as me. Only glad I have around 4-5 months to go and frankly now it doesn’t seem enough! Every day I hear of something new. I was actually talking to someone and got to know about AIRBRUSHED MAKEUP. I read about it on the net but now I have one more thing to worry about! What did u choose for ur wedding- airbrushed or traditional ? What would u suggest?
    Looking forward to any response
    Stressed out,
    -N

    Like

  8. Hi lovely ladies,

    Thanks the delhi bride and other bloggers. I have got so much info about indian weddings through the wedding blogs . I had no clue where to start when in April we decided to get married in India. So the big day is on 22nd dec. I heard that late dec is bit quite for weddings in India so choose the date around that time, as we live in very quite country and we will be lost if its too crowdy. We are from New Zealand and looking for MUA for the wedding day plus few pre -wedding treatments in delhi. I want someone who does subtle make up but still makes me look like a bride . I am fair skinned & possess quite sharp features . So want someone to work around them I like to look natural. We will reach India on 1st of dec and would like to get a make up trial along with buying a wedding outfit for me and other half in the first week of dec. I know its bit stupid of me to wait until then but its quite far away so we cannot travel as much as we like to. I have few queries if any of you can help me.
    1) Pre-wedding treatments: like full body wrap, massages, eyebrows, facials 2 weeks & few days before wedding ( for both bride & groom). Something for both of us to relieve stress & jetlag plus enjoy our time together in a serene environment with a drink or two. Have not come accross any place like that online yet in Delhi . Any suggestions will be great.
    2) Acrylic Nail salon. I could get them done in NZ but will grow out by the wedding day so need someone experienced for touch up or do a new set. I want wedding theme on my nails but not overdone. Any suggestions welcome ??
    3) Suggestions about MUA. I would like someone to come at the venue.: I have narrowed down to Chandni ( I know she dont but anybody knows if her senior artists travel & how their work is), Tejasvini, Simran kalra , Kritids. Not sure who to go with…. I am all confused here. Any suggestions on these or any other artists will be great??

    Thanks a ton ladies. Hope to hear from some of you soon.

    Cheers,
    Lovee

    Like

  9. hey.. you’re a pretty girl with such an innocent face. but seriously, looks like you have no make up on. you could ve gotten ready yourself better than this :/

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    1. Haha! Thanks for the compliment 🙂 that’s the magic of great makeup – it looks like there’s no makeup! But there is 🙂 and I didn’t even know how to do basic basic makeup, so no way I could’ve pulled this off myself. Eyeliner, concealer, right way to apply foundation, eyeshadows, eyelash curling – I knew absolutely nothing when I was getting married. Still don’t have most of these skills!

      Like

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