From the rock on your finger to the final chains around your neck, figuratively, there's many a slip between the cup and the lip, beauty-wise that is. Stress, the pressure to look good, the zillion times zillion things to do before your wedding, and of course the wrong advice from peers can turn you from a blushing bride to Bridezilla! We bring you tips and tricks, do's and don'ts from girls who've been there!
Must Do's For All Brides: Planning Ahead!
The tables are set perfect, the dÃ©cor is impeccable, and the guests love the menu. But what about you, the bride? Experts say, if you don't plan ahead for your bridal beauty and grooming routines you could end up with more than just wedding-day blues. Overloading on beauty and grooming routines just days before your wedding is unwise, it can increase your stress on the very day you want to look poised and serene; plus, not every beauty routine is made for you! Plan ahead-set a schedule that anticipates some of your most important health and beauty needs. Ideally, you should begin 3-4 months before your wedding but if you've missed that bus, even 30 days is adequate for the most important selfcare rituals.
The Blushing Bride...
Nothing is as charming as a bride with a beautiful flush to her. Theatrics apart, schedule a series of monthly facials beginning as early as six months before your wedding. To help ensure your skin looks picture perfect on your wedding day let your last facial to be no later than one week before the big day. But do your homework before choosing a salon. Red skin with a bruised feel doesn't mean the facial has worked! Your skin must glow from the inside, literally, after a facial. The best way is to play private eye and go make an appointment on your own-look at women coming out of the salon. Do they have a glow? If not, then run to the next salon…. Well-known salons with national presence include Kaya, VLCC, Habibs, LakmÃ©, Clarins, Dermalogica (with product presence in many hotel spas). Your city may have a well-known city centric spa, don't be afraid to approach them. Look for basic hygiene and knowledge in the treatment specialists before you make a decision.
Time It Right!
If you are heading towards Botox and other such invasive procedures, have them done a month or at least three weeks prior to your wedding to let the residual bruising or swelling that oft occurs totally subside. Other less-dramatic procedures such as lasers used for hyper pigmentation, to tighten pores and fix tiny broken capillaries-can be done as close as 1-2 weeks before your wedding. Also, to reduce the risk of redness, irritation, or even an allergic reaction- avoid glycolic peels, dermabrasion, or anything chemical for at least one month prior to your wedding day.
The Dreaded Zit!
Experts say if you're already dealing with acne, and have attained some measure of control, keep on your regular treatment schedule, and always keep your trusty zit zapper handy. Avoid using new brands-including shampoos or makeup-during the month before your wedding. And what about the occasional pimple-often caused by stress?
Experts advise: If a whitehead appears, a hot compress will reduce it, followed by a cold compress and a tiny dab of benzyl peroxide to kill any bacteria. If your skin is irritated from stress, the solution is to apply cool cotton pads soaked in milk or chamomile tea, followed by an application of lukewarm water. If the blemish pops out the night before your wedding-or it looks like it's going to-dab it with some toothpaste. But it has to be the paste type (the fluoride one), not the gel type. The rest would be the makeup artist's magic!
Groomed To Be A Bride...
Be adventurous and splurge on beauty-from plucking eyebrows to bikini waxing, from teeth whitening to skin whitening, your wedding is the time to try it all-but not the day before D-Day! Many of us don't realise that having eyebrows done, for example, can cause swelling, and skin redness-you don't want to have to deal with this the day before your wedding. Have your brows shaped 3-4 days before the big day. Body waxing should be done at least three days prior to your wedding-even earlier if you've never had it done before, or if your skin is very sensitive. Facial waxing should be done 3-4 days before the wedding to avoid redness or irritation.
For A Bright Smile!
Teeth bleaching can be a plus but only if you see your dentist before choosing an OTC product. Many products irritate gums and lips, and cause swelling. To help whiten teeth naturally, eat lots of raw veggies such as carrots and celery, or rub teeth with strawberries or lemons-both natural whiteners-and then rinse out with cool water. Avoid drinking coffee, dark sodas, and red wine in the weeks leading up to your wedding to reduce teeth stains.
Make It A Great Hair Day!
Thumb rule: No adventures here. Indian weddings with elaborate hairdos do require a certain length of hair, so leave the chopping to a latter time, say on your honeymoon. If your style is simple, don't let others bully you into a look you don't feel comfortable with just because they perceive it as being more glamorous.
Have A Trial Run...
What you see isn't what you get, and that's true with most salons. week or even days before your wedding, get a trial run hairdo and makeup session. Make sure you take a digital picture to really see how you look. You'll be surprised how different something can look in a photograph, so it's always a good idea to check. You don't want to look like a white ghost in your wedding album, or catch him with a 'what-thehell-is-that' look!
The Overall Best Advice
Be yourself-and you'll be beautiful. it's you he asked to marry him, and it's you he wants to see at the wedding!
You may be lucky to have six months before your wedding day, or you may be wringing your hands with a month to go. But any time you may have, can be well-utilised if you know what to do…
6-3 Months to go
You can have a ball, literally. Do a recce of, say, the 5 best salons in your area and check out the bridal packages that they have-look at the body, hair, face more holistically. Add on a weight loss programme if you want to lose a few kilos, go on a healthy balanced diet as advised by the nutritionist to not only lose weight but also to get a glowing skin! Must dos every month: A facial, two hair spas, one body scrub and wrap each, once-a-month pedicure and manicure. Start body waxing (once a month) to de-sensitise your body. Go for skin whitening and such treatments if you prefer.
3-2 Months to go
You may not have the time to do an extended program but this time is also good. A toning up fitness program, a detoxifying diet is good to shed those pounds. Go for a facial, pedicure, manicure, body scrub, wrap, massage and hair spas each month. Body wax is good to de-sensitise the skin.
1 Month to go
WEEK 4: Okay, tighten up those shoelaces. Go for a facial, a manicure and pedicure each. Concentrate on drinking lots of water and exercising regularly to combat the pounds that stress seems to add on. Colour your hair now if you want to, and then indulge in hair treatments, hot oil massages and deep conditioning.
WEEK 3: Another facial and a body massage to completely relax yourself. Spend more time exercising, relaxing and drinking lots of fluids. A hair spa would do you good.
WEEK 2: Beginning of the week, indulge in a revitalising body massage and body wrap to follow. Get that body wax, face wax, eyebrows towards the end of the week.
DAY 7: Breathe. Relax, do a binge night with food to relax your body a bit. Get a body wrap.
DAY 6: Stick to exercising and drinking water to avoid water retention due to stress. A body massage is good.
DAY 5: Run through a checklist of makeup and such. Try out the products to ensure that you aren't allergic to anything.
DAY4: Finalise on your look, meet up with your makeup and hair stylist with your dress in hand to ensure no goof ups.
DAY 3: A body scrub and a wrap relax to pamper you. Go for a deep conditioning treatment for your hair.
DAY2: Do a trial run with your dress and makeup and click yourself to ensure that the mirror isn't playing any tricks.
DAY 1: Relax. Get a manicure & pedicure. Any last minute face cleaning up, threading or tweezing eyebrows, and you're good to go.
D-DAY! Wake up, smile, get into your outfit and makeup and look truly gorgeous!
asy Makeup Tips
To make a beautiful bride, just use a little common sense!
Make sure the salon uses waterproof eye makeup.
Most brides cry at their weddings. Even if you don't think you're the crying variety, with so many waterproof products out there, why take a chance?
Use a long-lasting lipstick.
When they first came out, most were dry and not suitable for a day-filled with close-ups and endless congratulatory kisses. But the new generation wised up with separate colour and moisturiser. Apply the colour once at the beginning of the day, and re-moisturise a couple of times to keep lips luscious and picture-perfect.
Employ a spot checker.
This could be your cheeky sister or your dedicated best friend or the over-enthusiastic aunt who wanted to get you married the day you were born… Your mother is another good candidate. Ask them to keep an eye on you and let you know if you need a touch up. They might also do you the favour of stashing your lipstick in their purse for easy access.
Stake out the bathrooms or changing facility at the venue. Stash an emergency kit including powder to beat down shiny noses, a hairbrush, hairspray, lipstick, a small perfume, and safety pins, along with anything else you think you might need.
Take a test run.
Make sure you test out beauty products several times-you wouldn't want to find out the morning of your wedding that you're allergic to that luscious gold gloss!
Bridal Beauty Between The Sheets…
1. Get a Brazilian. He will love your baby soft skin, especially down south!
2. Clipped nails, not claws: Unless you want to rake his back to ribbons in a fit of passion!
3. No more she-bear: If you are a scary cat about body waxing because you think the pain will be unbearable, go for a hair removing cream but please darling, remove the hair!
4. Facial hair is a no-no. Moustaches and beards are for men, you need to get a face wax!
5. Shower before you get into bed and spritz on perfume. Stress can turn BO bad!
6. Get those products out of your hair, condition but stop at the mousse. He wants soft curls, not rock hard ones…
7. Remove the makeup before retiring to bed unless you want to wake him up in the morning with racoon eyes!
8. Lips in a mess, dab on lip balm…