We take the stress out of your big day with easy steps to achieving radiant perfection
Dress… check. Venue… check. Skin primed to shine… oh. It may not be the most pressing concern when planning your wedding, but having radiant skin that reflects your joy is something that needs to be addressed way before your make-up session on the big day. “Too often, brides think they can rely on great makeup, forgetting that the canvas – their skin – is the best asset to get right,” says skincare pro Nicola Quinn, owner of Nicola Quinn Beauty & Day Spa in Christchurch.
Marianna Glucina, founder of About Face skin clinics, agrees: “The face and dress are the most photographed, so perhaps scrimp on shoes or flowers, but invest lavishly in your skin.” The same goes for healthy locks – start nourishing hair months in advance. Every bride has a lot on her mind, so we’ve simplified your pre-wedding beauty regimen into easy-to-follow steps. Call this your bridal beauty bootcamp, and think of FQ as your drill sergeants. Atten-tion!
SIX MONTHS OUT
A skincare plan is your first priority, so visit a professional dermal beauty therapist for a skin assessment. “From here a treatment and home-care plan can be put together to fit your wishes and budget,” says Quinn. Your second priority is getting your hair healthy. Nic Apaapa from Nicholas Paul Hair Design in Auckland recommends consulting your hairstylist now to formulate a plan, which involves six-weekly visits for colour touch-ups and trims. “We start the colour conversation very early so that we can be sure to have the perfect hue on the day. Healthy hair is key to beautiful hair on your wedding, so we recommend using Joico’s K-Pak Reconstructor on a fortnightly basis. This treatment has the ability to reconstruct even the most damaged hair,” says Nic.
FOUR MONTHS OUT
Start skincare treatments as best results may not be noticeable until the skin starts to build new collagen several months later. “With brides we obtain excellent results with a laser called Clear + Brilliant,” Glucina says. “It literally gives the skin luminosity, refined pores, brightness and clarity, and as a bonus will take five years off your face.”
THREE MONTHS OUT
Book hair and makeup trials for you and your bridal party, teeth-whitening treatments and try out tanning products. “A poorly applied spray tan or a tan which is too dark for a bride’s natural skin tone can really ruin the whole look,” says Quinn. And have eyebrows professionally shaped so there’s time to grow them out in places if required.
TWO MONTHS OUT
If your skin is sensitive or prone to breakouts, take a pre-emptive strike now to give your complexion the best chance of being clear and radiant. Glucina recommends Glow, a combination of peels or microdermabrasion, light treatment and vitamin infusions. “It makes the skin stronger and softer, reduces breakouts, detoxifies and hydrates,” she says. “We schedule two to three appointments per week over a month.”
SIX WEEKS OUT
This is when hydrating skin is key and your regular regimen alone isn’t going to cut it. To give thirsty skin an extra boost, Quinn recommends using O Cosmedics Pure Age Defiance Serum, $120. “With a natural skin tightener, this serum helps relax the muscles and decrease the appearance of lines and wrinkles, leaving skin hydrated and radiant,” she says.
ONE MONTH OUT
The nutrition and fitness choices you make now will really make a difference to your bridal look. “Eat food with essential fats such as salmon, avocado and raw almonds for glowing skin,” recommends Haley Schulz, beauty professional and business performance manager at About Face. “Drink plenty of water and cut down on foods containing gluten to avoid bloating.” Daily walks for at least 30 minutes will keep your circulation and lymphatic system in great condition, and eight hours of sleep a night will be hugely beneficial in terms of beauty. “Make sure you’re exfoliating every fifth day and moisturising twice a day to reveal soft, smooth and glowing skin,” says Schulz.
TWO WEEKS BEFORE
Now is your last chance to visit the hair salon. This will allow time for the colour to ‘settle’ and the cut to sit right. Apaapa’s tip for bridal hair colour: “Beige highlights help add shadow and texture for an overall feminine look.”
THE WEEK BEFORE
If you want one last facial before the big day, this is your window – but make sure you opt for a facial you’ve had before to avoid the unlikely scenario of your skin reacting. For what Glucina describes as the “ultimate couture facial”, About Face offers the Power of Three facial, $259, which promises quick results. Get your teeth whitened now, too, so that any sensitivity will ease before the big day – tooth pain is no one’s idea of fun on your wedding day.
THE DAYS BEFORE
You’re not going to be able to sit still on the day of your wedding, so get your mani and pedi done in the last few days. “Stick to a classic nail look,” advises Quinn. “The aim for nails and makeup is to look timelessly beautiful.” She recommends the range from Faby Nails, $20 each, for elegant neutral nail shades. By now your bridal beauty bootcamp regimen will be paying off with youthful, luminous skin and silky, healthy hair. Nice work on the tan, teeth and brows, too. Troops dismissed!
Words: Trudie McConnochie