In the past year, 26 year old Annalee – aka @makeupbyannalee has had her fair share of celebrations: she and long-time boyfriend Trent got engaged (at Disneyland, no less!); she left her career as a hugely successful Clinique artist to dedicate herself to her freelance role and passion as a YouTuber; AND celebrated a massive milestone of 100,000 subscribers.
Now, Annalee and Trent are simultaneously planning their wedding; building a house and navigating the very exciting, but, as I know first-hand, somewhat stressful journey of becoming self-employed.
Annalee, as someone whose business is in beauty, are you getting nearly enough beauty sleep?
Well funny you ask that. If you asked me that question 5 months ago (when I was working a full time job as a Clinique counter manager while working full time hours as a YouTuber & Beauty Blogger in my “spare” time) I would have said hell no, HELL NO!
I got 5 hours’ sleep per night for 18 months! Since becoming my own boss, I finally have lightened my workload, and work standard hours, so I’m getting a good 8 hours’ sleep now. I seriously have no idea how I use to not get anything less than that.
I’ll link your gorgeous engagement vlog below, but can you give us a teaser:
Trent and I were actually over in the states this time last year. I had won a huge award to go to New York City through Clinique, and we thought it was a great opportunity to travel the rest of the States en route. I think for anyone whose been in a relationship for a while, you probably have an inkling that big question is going to pop up sooner or later, and often that’s while travelling. Before we left, everyone kept egging me on about how he would “get down on one knee” while we were there but I honestly didn’t put too much expectation on it in case it didn’t happen.
I remember waking up the first morning in LA with a ridiculous head cold from all the hot and cold air conditioning in the hotels (I was pretty miserable I ain’t going to lie haha).
We planned on going to Disneyland that day but Trent offered a more relaxed alternative and take a scenic drive to San Diego and just relax, seeing as I wasn’t feeling too great. At the time of course, I had no idea Trent was actually trying to buy himself an extra day to prepare himself before asking the big question! HAHA!
I felt too guilty that I was stopping us from potentially going to the happiest place on earth so I made a last minute call to go to Disneyland as planned – and off we went…
Yes certainly, basically I didn’t want to rush our wedding, I have been dreaming of this day since I was a little girl and I want everything to be exactly the way I (we) want it.
We got engaged 12 months ago now. Before the proposal, Trent and I had already made plans to sell our newly built home (built by Trent himself) and rebuild again. 2017 rolled around super quickly, where I had planned on leaving my job to enter the scary world of self employment and Trent had started to build our home on his own – which takes a lot of time and energy. 2018 was looking like it was just around the corner and I had to make a quick call if I was going to book out my 2018 wedding season as a freelancing artist. The timing wasnt right for us, so I made the call to push it out to 2019.
I want to enjoy every moment of planning our wedding. You’re only engaged once – what’s the huge rush?! It has made the process so much more relaxed and fun for us. There’s not as much pressure, and this way I also am prepared as far in advance to secure bookings for my first choice of vendors for our wedding!
What have you already organised for your wedding?
So far I have my AMAZING little white book to keep me on top of literally EVERYTHING when it comes to the planning process. I also have an amazing wedding planner, florist and hairdresser organised.
What has the biggest challenge been?
Working as a freelance Make-up Artist I attend wedding venues multiple times a year for other brides and their big day, so I’m kind of wanting something super special which I’ve never experienced, and which isn’t a reminder of everyone else’s weddings I’ve attended to glam them up.
It’s about finding somewhere untouched and romantic for the both of us, but definitely “untouched”. As someone in the industry, I want somewhere I’ve never been. I want something really unique.
It’s been so hard when you’re limited for venues in a small regional area. Everyone is trying to book 18 months in advance so your under a little bit of pressure to find something and (hope to God it’s available!)
Update: as this article went to ‘print’, Annalee and Trent booked their wedding venue!
What have you considered saving on?
We are very determined to keep to our wedding budget, this is where I’ve found prioritising is key. The things that matter the most to us are the venue, photographer (images last forever) and the catering (everyone remembers the food!) – these are the things we are happy to spend a little more on to ensure quality.
Lower down the priorities list, I like to think I’m a great GREAT shopper, so when it comes to a finding a high quality looking bargain I think thats where I could see myself saving some pennies on wedding and bridesmaids’ dresses, wedding shoes, skirts etc. I’ll definitely be thinking hard about what’s worth spending money on.
Annalee has already filmed two incredibly useful YouTube videos, including this $20 Bridesmaids’ dress haul!
Is there anything you’ve considered skipping altogether? Is there anything you really don’t see the point in doing?
We have thought about skipping the honeymoon or at least delaying it. As we are getting married in March (still in the midst of the busy wedding season for me), I’d rather continue working and then look at going away in the quieter season for my job. Trent isn’t fused either way!
How important is tradition to you?
Personally its quite important to me as I grew up with a Catholic upbringing. I wouldn’t say I’m a practising catholic or anything, but to me it’s important to my family that we have a Catholic priest to marry us. Trent completely respects that, even though he isn’t religious in any way.
How many guests are you looking at having?
We would happily have 200 haha but you have to draw a line somewhere don’t you, so we are looking at roughly 120, which may be tricky.
What, if any, expectations or pressures do you feel as a bride?
I guess I’m quite well known within the wedding industry, between vendors and clients, so for me I know there will be a fairly large audience of people who will be interested in our wedding. I also share so much about my personal life online so its almost expected.
It’s definitely something that sits in the back of my mine, I’m not going to lie!
I’ve had ideas for years about our wedding and have almost put a lot of pressure on myself funny enough, but I’ve found the more I look around, the more I understand exactly what I want for our big day.
What are you most looking forward to?
I really just can not wait for that overwhelming feeling of emotions on the day with Trent. That feeling of family and love coming together and simply celebrity with our closest friends and family. Oh and of course finding the dress!!
What are you worried about?
The weather, truly.
What are you grateful for?
I think being in the industry has given me a great insight into exactly how we want everything to look and feel. Plus I have some incredibly talented friends in the industry who I’m excited to be working with.
Also, Trent is involved but at the same time leaving me to lead the way I want things to be, which I think we are both grateful for because it saves a few disagreement haha!
What advice would you give a newly engaged friend?
Not to feel pressured to plan their wedding in a certain amount of time. Don’t rush booking your wedding if the timing doesn’t feel right, it has to fit. Obviously, have a little white book.
See also advice from make-up artists Annalee and Larissa on how to choose yours
As beautiful fresh-faced as she is made-up, Annalee takes care of her skin!
And finally, the question on everyone’s lips, will you be doing your own make-up on the day?
Ohhhhhhhhh great question! The more I keep thinking about it, the more I want to relax on the day so I think I will have someone else do it. I will be conducting multiple trials with a few artists to see what they come up with – I have some super talented friends in the industry so I’m sure ill go with one of them!
You can follow Annalee’s journey on any of her social channels.
Now read the next interview with Hannah Carson, just two weeks out from her Bali wedding.