In SA OC Siman 263 M"A Sif-Katan 12 he writes that if one makes the bracha before lighting (on Shabbos) then that's considered to be "Kabbalas Shabbos" and it's then ossur to light candles. However he then says if that's the case ("v'im cain"), then on Yom Tov one should make the bracha and then light. (Since there is no problem of lighting a candle on yom tov, therefore better to make the bracha first.) He says this is also what's written ("cain csav") b'sof Sefer HaDrisha b'shem imo (in the name of his mother! This, by the way, is a famous thing: that the whole reason that many woman when lighting candles on yom tov make the bracha first is because of that which the Drishas mother did (however if you look at the Drisha inside I think he is referring to his Grandmother if I'm not mistaken -- but it would make sense anyway that that is where his mother got the minhag from)). However, the M"A writes then, "avel ain chachma l'isha...d'lo chelku chachamim..." his kavana (according to the Maktzes HaShekel) is that not all women will know how to make a difference between Shabbos and Yom Tov and if you tell them to, on Yom Tov, make a bracha and then light, then they will come to do the same on Shabbos, which will get them into a problem of being makabel Shabbos before lighting (as mentioned before). The SA HaRav paskens like the M"A (although I can't locate the exact source for this at the moment).
In terms of practice, many do like the Drisha and make the bracha first. However many also do like the M"A. It is dependent on everyone's own minhag (perhaps what their mothers did!) and on the minhag of their kehillah.