After just celebrating one of the biggest events of my life, I thought it would be a great time to share some beauty tips that helped me prepare for my big day. While most brides prepare for their wedding over the course of almost a year, I managed to organize my entire wedding in just about two and half months which is very little time when you think about it. I didn’t want to wait long for my special day so I got to work right away!
Skincare: My skin is acne prone and instead of blasting it with a ton of acne products, I went another route. Keeping my routine for the most part gentle, with weekly exfoliating treatments. Dried out pimples do NOT look good with makeup on them so I did my best to use gentle washes like DermOrganic Soapless Cleanser and used Michael Todd Pumpkin Enzyme AHA Exfoliating mask to purge pores and refresh my skin. The cleanser kept my skin from drying out while the mask lessened breakouts and allowed my serums to penetrate the skin better. I always followed with one of two serums: Dennis Gross Hydration Serum or Michael Todd Knu You Anti Aging Face Lift serum. Combined, my skin had less breakouts, more even tone and was going to make makeup ready if I had anything to do with it!
Hair & Grooming: Do not, I repeat DO NOT plan to color, cut or change your hairstyle the week of your wedding. If something goes wrong…too late, you’re stuck with it. But do plan to get whatever you need waxed the week of, spray tans (even a trial run weeks before if you’ve never done it before), and a manicure one to two days before the wedding. I don’t like the idea of gel manicures, but I got one because I knew I would be chip free and could get it done 4 days before and not have to worry about it getting messed up.
image from makeupalley.com. This is exactly what mine looked like
Body Skincare: Do some extra sloughing in the weeks before your wedding and moisturize, moisturize, moisturize! I like a variety of scrubs so find one that works for you. One of the cheapest and best ones I tried was a DIY mixture of olive oil, lemon juice and sugar. I used it from head to toe in the shower and felt my skin was soft, smooth and moisturized.
Fitness: If you are planning on doing any body transformation be prepared to put in some serious work. Last year when I wanted to lose some weight I gave myself 4 months. I had 2.5 months to get my butt into gear and make the changes I wanted. That meant being very dedicated to my fitness and diet routine. It meant skipping desserts, no soda, and allowing myself one cheat day a week so I didn’t go mad. It meant working out EVERY DAY and sometimes two times a day. Yes, two times a day. I put in some serious work because I had zero time to mess around. I enrolled in a boot camp class (Check out fit body boot camp they have several locations), hit the gym for additional cardio and made sure I was eating the correct proportions with the help of the my fitness pal app. That app REALLY helps you realize how much you may be over (or under) eating. And trust me, I ate! I had to with all my workouts, but I watched what I ate. And in the end, I lost the 10 pounds I needed, leaned out and gained muscle. I felt like a million bucks by the time my wedding rolled around.
Diet: Seriously, just download the My Fitness Pal app onto your phone or tablet. It makes tracking what you eat SO eeeeeaaasy. And drink water whenever possible. I’m a big crystal light kinda gal because I need some flavor at times, but I have a gigantic water bottle I fill everyday with a goal to finish by the time I go to bed. It will help keep your skin looking great, and keep you filled up instead of filling up on unhealthy snacks. If you went into diet mode like me, you will get cravings. Save those cravings for your cheat day. Because those extra calories add up quick over a weeks time and you’ll be mad at yourself. Load up on protein and vegetables and less on the fruit. Fruit tastes great, but still lots of sugar sadly. Sometimes I would eat an entire bag of frozen broccoli and cauliflower with dinner (the equivalent of 4 servings) to keep me filled up and away from the ice cream.
google sheets are your friend…and free to use!
Stress: This may be the hardest tip to stick to. After all, there are SO many details that go into planning a wedding but do your best. Your human. You deserve to not feel crazy and get the wedding of your dreams at the same time. So make a plan of action. Get your pinterest boards ready to get your ideas. Create a google spreadsheet to keep track of your budget and who you’ve paid and what’s left over (don’t forget to factor in tips), and FOLLOW UP on all vendors. Better to be safe than sorry. I purchased one of those wedding planning books and ended up setting it aside after looking it over once. Waste of money. Everything you need is online! Trust me! If you end up feeling overwhelmed, enlist your bridesmaids to help you do research, or take care of other details you can’t handle at the moment. Do as much planning ahead as you can so the days before the wedding you can relax a little bit. As someone who prides themselves on planning WAY ahead, I found myself pretty exhausted just days before the wedding printing out escort cards and sorting tip money out. Plan. Plan. Plan! It will pay off. Oh yea, use The Knot. It also helps keep you organized and allows you to create a wedding website to help your guests stay informed of the festivities.
Hair & Makeup Planning: I hired a makeup and hair artist for my entire bridal party and I chose one I had previously worked with. Because I was on a tight budget, I opted to not do a trial run with my look and sent her a picture of what I was looking for. It totally worked! Give them an idea beforehand of what you are looking for and discuss if its possible.
image from Walmart.com
The Inevitable Zit or Pimple: My skin looked great the week of my wedding….except for the mountain that grew on my cheek randomly two days before the big day. If you can swing it, get a cortizone shot at a dermatologist office and it will shrink that sucker in 24-48 hours flat. I couldn’t book my appointment in time and was left to worry if that pimple was going to be the main feature on all our photos. My makeup artist took one look at the pimple and pulled a bottle of aspirin out of her bag. It was the cheap, uncoated kind you find at discount stores and took a handful of the pills and mashed it with some water into a paste. I slathered it onto my face and left it on for about 15 minutes right before my makeup was put on. It was a miracle worker! All the dry flaky skin around the pimple sloughed right off, the pimple flattened some more and she was able to cover it 100%. I couldn’t see it at all! The miracle workers of professionals! Woot! Sheila from Painted Ladies even did a blog post about it too!
I hope these tips helped at least one bride to be out there! And because I couldn’t write a post without sharing a few of my own wedding photos, here they are!