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How to Apply Makeup for Pageant Rehearsals

pageant coaching tips, pageant makeup
This contestant is having fun at pageant rehearsal!

The moment you set foot on pageant turf, it is game on. You are vying for a job as a spokes model for the state, and potentially, the country. You must look your best at all times, even when they say dress casually, or to wear no makeup. When you are at pageant rehearsal, it can be tricky to know how to prepare your day face when you could potentially be working up a sweat. I will tell you how to prepare your makeup for pageant rehearsal.

Pageant Tip:

-Do not be afraid to ask questions about what you are going to be working on at rehearsal for the day if it is not specified in your pageant book. Some rehearsals can be as simple as a walk through, and at some rehearsals you could be learning a full on dance. Do not hesitate to ask questions.

– Do not wear too much moisturizer on your face if you are learning an intricate dance routine that can cause you to sweat. The moisturizer can cause too much oil to seep into your pours and bring about an unwanted breakout.

-Keep a small towel, or napkin, handy at rehearsal. Every now and then you may need to pat your face dry.

-Always use spray makeup sealant to seal all your looks so that when rehearsal runs long, your face holds up to the challenge.

At pageant rehearsal, I recommend keeping your makeup light and refreshed. You are going to be surrounded by a vast array of people; from media to coordinators, you never know who is standing next to you. Have you ever heard the phrase, “Being pretty isn’t easy, I just make it look easy!” That phrase simply means, even if it is difficult to get ready, or to do your makeup, make it look like you can do it in your sleep. Your pageant rehearsal makeup should look effortless.

The Breakdown:

When you wake up for a rehearsal, make sure you wash and moisturize your skin. You have a long day ahead, and washing your face wakes your skin up after a long night of rest.


If your pageant rehearsal is early in the morning, you may have bags under your eyes. Take your concealer and apply a coat underneath your eyes. This will mask any dark circles under your eyes and minimize the appearance of any bags under your eyes. Covergirl + Olay Rehab Concealer instantly brightens your eyes and improves your look significantly.

The Foundation:

I recommend utilizing a crème to powder foundation, or a dense powder foundation. Mac has a foundation called Studio Fix. This is a highly pigmented foundation that is great for a simple face. Just take your foundation brush and apply a coat of foundation over your face. The great thing about Mac Studio Fix is that it blends perfectly for a matte look. When rehearsing an intricate dance, the Mac Studio Fix will last quite some time and can be quickly reapplied during rehearsal breaks.

Click to Read, “How to Choose the Right Foundation for Your Skin Type“.

Eye Shadow:

Focus on creating a neutral daytime smoky eye. I would take a light shimmery color that is one shade lighter than your skin tone and go over the entire lid. Follow up with a color that has golden hues in it to make your eyes pop. Apply that color in the crease and blend. Do not forget to apply eyeliner on the top of you lids and lightly along the waterline of your eyes to define the shape of your eyes. Follow up with lengthening mascara, not a voluminous one. Remember we are trying to keep it simple.


Do not pick a drastic lip color, but rather go for one that makes you appear vibrant. I recommend going for corals and pinks to make you look youthful and bright. Too Faced Sweet Sun Shines Lip Gloss is an awesome lip gloss and color, and is a quick one step application that gives you the fun, effortless look.

Any funny pageant rehearsal stories that you care to share?! Write it below and let’s get the conversation going!

As always, Stay BeYOUtiful

Which dress do you like better?

4 thoughts on “How to Apply Makeup for Pageant Rehearsals

  1. What should I do when the show is right after rehearsals? For instance, rehearsals start at 8 or 9am on saturday and prelims are at 2pm. The next day we start at the same time and the final show is at 6pm. There might be little to no time to shower again before hair and makeup, so should I just go to rehearsals clean with no makeup on so I can be fresh for hair/makeup?

    1. I would do a light daytime look for the rehearsal and throw some makeup wipes in your bag. after rehearsal, you can take your daytime look off and have a fresh clean face for the show makeup.

  2. I think it should be okay, for the reason that you need to clean face for pageant stage make up and there should NOT be any media the day of as it would be awkward and the only people there is crew members and your pageant people

  3. Guinevere Davenport Oh ok thank you! yeah, for the Illinois USA pageant we're in private so I don't think it matters if we have makeup or not

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