Written by Kelsey O’Shaunessy-Podgorski | Photography by Photography by Lauryn
No one wants a blemish or dried-out hair on their wedding day. You need that gorgeous newlywed glow! Follow these simple steps to achieve a radiant complexion, fabulous hair and a dazzling look for your big day.
FACE THE FACTS
We know it’s tough to find the time, but if you really want to clear up any skin blemishes in time for your big day, it’s best to consult a dermatologist at least six months before your wedding. They’ll be able to give you the best advice on what todo—and what not to do — to prep your skin. A great esthetician will also be able to recommend the ideal facial treatments for you. We suggest getting a few facials before the day-of, but be sure to schedule your last one at least two weeks before the wedding.
TIP: The simplest way to improve your skin is to drink tons of water. You’ll be surprised how much of a difference getting your eight, eight-ounce glasses of water per day will make.
If the eyes are the windows to the soul, the eyebrows are your curtains. Make sure they are neat and tidy before your wedding events. Waxing is great for fine hair, because it gets all those tiny little spots you can hardly see. It can be a bit intense for sensitive skin, though. Threading is a great alternative, and tweezing is always a solid option — especially for last minute touch-ups.
TIP: Try your method of choice a few months before the wedding to see if you like the shape and effect. We suggest getting your last service about a week before your events, just in case.
PERFECT PEARLY WHITES
Everyone wants gorgeous, white teeth in pictures. Start with regular cleanings at your dentist. A well-maintained mouth makes for a great smile. Specific whitening toothpastes and mouthwashes are a good starting point. Strips or gel can be harsh on sensitive teeth but are usually more effective. If you’re okay with a splurge, ask your dentist about professional whitening options.
TIP: If you have your teeth professionally whitened, don’t start the process right before the wedding. Overly white teeth can look a bit fake and weird. We recommend having the process done a few months in advance, then supplementing with less intense whitening agents as necessary.
Even if you’re growing your hair out, regular cuts are a must. Get rid of those split ends before they give you a splitting headache. While you’re at the salon, talk with your stylist about your hair type and the look you’d like to have on your wedding day. They can give you tips on the best products to use to enhance your natural shine and make sure your locks look luscious when the big day rolls around.
TIP: To avoid those pesky, wispy, tiny hairs, avoid daily washing and heated styling products. If you’re too far gone, try a deep conditioning treatment about a month before your big day.
CAREFUL WITH COLOR…
Nothing makes your hair look shinier and lovelier than a fresh dose of color. Try a flamboyage look by combining ombre with balayage. The look is natural, but fresh and bright. It’s the best of both worlds. If you want something to lighten up a winter look, add some snowlights. This new style features pale blond, shimmering strands of hair that gracefully pick up the light. Need some dimension? Opt for a color melting treatment. Multiple tones literally melt together to create the perfect, natural hue.
TIP: For any of these processes, talk with your stylist about the best colors for you. Mention the color of the dress and whether or not you plan to tan before the big day.
…OR GO BOLD
We absolutely love funky hair colors. If you want to get a little crazy, go for it! Be bold, friends! Be you! Pick a color you love and have a professional stylist get you gorgeous. If you’re not sure you want to fully commit to a dramatic style, consider a really subtle color like rose gold, pastel purple or pale blue. You also might consider a colored streak or more of a dip-dyed look.
TIP: We recommend sticking with a color or look you’ve tried before. Experimenting right before your wedding could lead to a color you really aren’t thrilled about — and it will be in every single wedding day picture.
The face is not the only place acne and other skin issues can pop up. To avoid pesky pimples, use a loofah or body scrub to exfoliate every day. If you have sensitive skin, start with every other day and find what’s most effective for your body. Exfoliation washes away any excess oils and dead skin that could clog pores, leaving your skin soft, smooth and glowing for your big day.
TIP: Because your loofah helps get rid of the dead skin cells on your body, it’s a prime location for bacteria to grow. Make sure you’re replacing your loofah every month or so.
SLATHER ON THE SUNSCREEN
We are all about having a fun, sun-kissed glow. It’s refreshing, and everyone looks great with a hint of color in their cheeks. But this look comes with a huge caveat — please do not attempt to get a tan through unhealthy methods. No tan is worth damaging your skin.
TIP: The American Academy of Dermatology recommends selecting a sunscreen that has broad-spectrum protection (against UVA and UVB rays), an SPF of 30 or higher and is water resistant (aad.org). Don’t forget to stay in the shade when the UV index is high.
If you want the tan without the safety risks, check out lotions and makeup that contain bronzers. It gives a similar effect without the damage. However, it can take a couple tries to learn to apply these without some streaking. It also takes a couple applications to build the perfect color. Start testing your options a couple months out to make sure you’re a pro by the time the wedding comes along.
TIP: Definitely do not apply self-tanning lotion on the morning of your wedding. If it doesn’t have sufficient time to dry, you could be looking at some nasty stains on your wedding gown.
It’s old news that exercise decreases stress, but if you’ve never experienced wedding planning stress before, it’s definitely a new kind of beast. Taking a quick walk or run can really help to work it out. Plus, it helps counteract the seven cake tastings you’ve scheduled for the next month.
TIP: An excellent activity to help with your pre-wedding prep is to take a dance class. Bonus — the salsa and the Argentine tango are wicked sexy.
More people will ask to see your ring than you could ever imagine, so we highly recommend regular manicures and pedicures leading up to the wedding. And your nails need to look good if you’re going to post an awesome ring selfie on Instagram. Check out fun nail art trends, like warm nude tones and tiny, metallic accents. Make sure you are prepared to care for and maintain your look between appointments
TIP: Pedicures lead to more than just pretty toes. Well-hydrated feet resist blisters better than dry, cracked feet. Also, you get to sit and relax while someone gives you an hour-long foot rub. It’s kind of a win-win.
You pluck and primp your body to perfection, but don’t forget about what’s inside. Make sure you take time to enjoy being engaged. Plan date nights with your betrothed and vow to not talk about anything wedding- related. Give yourself a break! Try yoga or meditation to quiet and focus your mind. You’d be surprised what a little bit of focus can do when it’s time to make all the important decisions.
TIP: When planning a wedding, the best thing you can do for yourself is to just unplug. Shut off Pinterest, silence your phone and take a break from electronics. When you return to planning, you’ll be a brand-new person!