You've probably thought a lot about how you want to look on your wedding day, and many brides find themselves making endless pinboards and compilations of gorgeous makeup and hair configurations. But what many don’t realize is that wedding beauty starts way before the big day; and a little advanced preparation can bring you much closer to wedding day perfection.
6 Months Before the Wedding
Six months prior to the wedding is the ideal time to begin focusing on overall health and well-being. Your appearance reflects the state of your body, and getting bogged down in wedding planning stress can backfire. Instead, the key is to practice healthy beauty habits with an eye toward overall health and well-being.
• If you want to lose weight prior to your wedding, now is the time to start doing it. Crash diets can make you miserable on your wedding day, so stick to a healthy, long-term weight-loss plan instead. Your local gym is a great spot to find a personal trainer, and numerous websites are available to help you track your goals.
• Start taking natural supplements to help keep your hair, skin, and nails healthy. This ensures that, no matter what style you go for, you'll have smooth nails, shiny hair, and glowing skin.
• Consider starting an exercise routine even if you don't want to lose weight. Exercise can help you beat wedding planning stress and gives you an opportunity to make new friends. Yoga, Pilates, dance and aerobics classes are all excellent options.
• If you want to try a new cut and color, now is the time to do it. Hair grows, on average, between 1/2 and 1 inch a month, so avoid haircuts that require you to grow out your hair more than a few inches before the big day.
• Now is the time to break any habits that wreck your look. If you're a smoker, quit now so that you can enjoy your wedding day smoke-free (and get the inevitable crankiness that comes with it out of the way).
• Organise a consultation with your dermatologist if you have any skincare concerns. Now is the time to get laser treatments or have dark spots removed.
3 Months Before the Wedding
Now is the time to nail down all the vital details of your wedding day and to do a few test runs to ensure everything will work out as you hope. If something goes wrong, you still have plenty of time to fix it before you say, “I do.”
• If you're planning to use a makeup artist, find the artist, plan your look, and in the coming weeks, schedule a makeup test run.
• Choose your photographer and, if you're having engagement photos taken, do your makeup the way you plan to do it on the wedding day. This gives you the chance to see what you look like in photos and correct anything you don't like, as well as keeping your wedding look consistent.
• Start a healthy skincare routine. Vitamin E can help your skin look youthful, and is a must if you have dry skin. Stick to a few basic products such as a gentle cleansing wash, toner, and moisturizer. If you have oily skin, try an oil-free moisturizer. Exfoliate your skin once a week to get rid of dead skin cells and eliminate dullness in your complexion.
• Get a facial. You'll get another one right before your wedding day, but your three-month facial is a test run. If you have a bad reaction, then you know to steer clear of facials prior to the big day!
1 Month Before the Wedding
The countdown has begun! A month before the wedding, you'll have to be careful about scheduling. If you get your hair colored, make sure that you schedule your appointment no more than two weeks before the wedding. If there's anything you're itching to try, such as a spray tan, try it now so you know if it will work before the wedding.
• Have your teeth whitened, either by a professional or using an at-home kit. There's no substitute for glistening white teeth in wedding photos!
• Steer clear of any new skincare regimens. By now, you've perfected your skincare routine, so the key is to stick with what works rather than be taken by the latest gimmick. It can take weeks to reverse the effects of an allergic reaction or peely skin created by a bad product, so don't take the risk!
• If you're interested in microdermabrasion and other involved facial treatments, now is the time to have them done- with plenty of recovery time.
1 Week Before the Wedding
You're almost there! The key now is to stick with what's working and do your last-minute beauty ablutions. Now is not the time for dramatic changes or last-minute crash diets. Instead, take some time for yourself and enjoy the final countdown to your wedding.
• Confirm the final details of your makeup routine with your makeup artist, and gather any supplies you'll need to take with you on the big day.
• Have any facial hair removal services, including brow waxing, done a few days before the wedding. This gives your skin time to heal but doesn't allow hair time to grow back.
• Consider getting eyelash extensions for lush eyelashes sans mascara.
• Get a spray tan if you want to glow on your wedding day.
• Have your nails and toenails done. Gel manicures and pedicures last longer, and will ensure your nails look stunning through the honeymoon.
• Stay hydrated. A parched body means parched, dry skin.
• Ward off breakouts by putting a salicylic acid solution on any zits. Keep your makeup minimal this week to avoid clogging pores. If you develop a truly awful zit, call a dermatologist. He may be able to inject cortisone to reduce the size of the pimple.
1 Day Before the Wedding
You should be done with all of your beauty treatments now. Instead, it's time focus on calming your nerves and creating a relaxing, health environment.
• If you get the opportunity, go for a massage to relax those pre-wedding nerves! You'll appreciate the time you took when it's time to get to sleep.
• Spend your day getting a little bit pampered. But be careful to not have any new, foreign treatments done to your skin or hair that could result in any kind of allergic reaction.
• Eat a healthy dinner that won't leave you bloated. If you have food sensitivities, steer clear of any problem foods. Under-cooked foods, rich desserts, and eggs can all give you diarrhea on your wedding day, so avoid them like the plague.
• Take off all your makeup before you go to bed, no matter how tired you are after your rehearsal dinner- growing a pimple overnight due to clogged pores is an absolute nightmare for anyone, but especially a bride who’s made such an effort for the past six months to ensure she looks her best!
• Go to bed early. Even though you may have trouble sleeping, try to stay rested and calm about not sleeping. Do something relaxing, such as listening to soft music, watching TV for a little while, or reading a book. You'll be nodding off in no time. After all, bags under your eyes are never a good look for any bride!
Pre-wedding beauty doesn't mean you have to devote yourself full-time to primping. Take it a little bit at a time, and you'll see improvements in your appearance and a big boost in self-confidence. And no matter how your look turns out, don't forget that the most important factor of all is to feel beautiful and exude confidence (and if you’re not feeling it, fake it ‘til you make it, baby)!