Your stress-free bridal beauty plan
The essential guide to making beauty prep painless and guaranteeing your wedding-day glow ...
Unless you’ve decided to elope to Vegas on a whim, chances are bridal beauty has fallen to the bottom of your priority list. After all, first you have to find the perfect dress, argue with your fiancé about where to spend the honeymoon and worry about who you’ve left out of the bridal party. How’s a girl supposed to think about looking flawless with so much else to stress about?
But creating your bridal beauty plan is easy if you break it down and schedule ahead.
Plan for complexion perfection
Some experts suggest starting a skin routine six months before the big day, but if you've left it a little late, don't panic. Zoe Karathomas, NSW Educational Manager and skincare guru at Clinique, believes real results can be achieved in just two months. "The skin takes approximately a month to renew itself," she explains. Eight weeks is enough time for two "rotations” to reveal new smoother, glowing skin.
Karathomas adds that the lead up to your wedding is not the time to "self-solve" skin conditions or experiment. Instead, pop in to see a trained beauty consultant, who can recommend the most effective products for your skin. Also, to minimise the risk of reactions, avoid facials in the final two weeks.
If your skin has just begun to misbehave, it could be an indication that you need to relax. Karathomas warns that the skin can react unexpectedly to stress. "Just picture your uncle, who's on his eighth champagne, trying to entice your mother-in-law onto the dance floor," she says. It's enough to give any girl a breakout.
So what if one crops up right before the wedding? Karathomas recommends applying an anti-blemish spot treatment immediately to reduce inflammation and redness. For emergencies, keep your dermatologist’s phone number on speed dial – they can give you a cortisone injection to kick start healing and clear the blemish in 24 hours.
Make-up: trial and try again
A make-up trial is absolutely imperative to perfecting your overall theme. “A trial gives you the chance to talk through the look you would like to achieve and co-ordinate colours,” explains Michelle Crofts, wedding make-up artist and creator of Harlotte cosmetics. And don't forget to put your trial to the test. Wear it all day and see how it lasts into the night. Do your own research too – if you find a better foundation or more kiss-proof lip colour, tell your make-up artist.
Crofts recommends keeping your look classic, focussing on either a statement lip or bold eyes. “If concentrating on lips, apply a nourishing lip balm frequently in the lead up to your wedding day. Lipstick looks most beautiful and lasts better on healthy lips,” she adds.
Wedding day lifesavers:
Harlotte Leg Garter, $24.95 & Lippie Pot, $22 (lip colour slips inside garter)
Clinique Lash Power Mascara, $36
Clinique Pore Minimizer Oil-Blotting Sheets, $20
Murine Eyedrops, $6.45
Musq Precious Metal Pencils, $35
Nail every detail
Ask your make-up artist for advice on nail colours and remember to put polish through its anti-chip paces – your ring finger is going to get a lot of attention! Make sure you don’t neglect your smile either. Professional whitening not in the budget? Try an at-home regime such as GoSmile Whiten ($125), which can take you up to six shades lighter in two weeks. Planning on having a spray tan? “Have a trial three or four weeks before to see if you’re happy with the colour and see how long it lasts,” directs Crofts.
No bride wants to look back on her wedding photos and cringe at her hair (an 80s bride anyone?), so preparation is important. Alan Coban, Creative Director of Alan Coban Salons in Sydney, recommends finding a great hairdresser at least three months in advance and investing in trims every six weeks to minimise split ends.
"It's another good idea to have weekly treatments to improve hair condition," he advises. Also keep heat styling to a minimum to keep hair healthy and stay out of the sun to minimise colour fade.
When deciding on a style, consider not only how it will look with your dress, but also the setting of the day. "Loose and natural styles are appropriate for informal or daytime weddings while up-styles provide a formal evening look," directs Coban. He also stresses the importance of a hair trial to ensure the look will last the distance down the aisle. If your test 'do still looks gorgeous at the end of a busy day, you've found your hairstyle (and hairdresser).
Wedding day lifesavers:
RPR Haircare Hold Me Forever, $16.95
Lady Jane Bobby Pins, from $1.99
- Kate Moffatt
Images courtesy Harlotte Cosmetics