Weddings are extremely exciting, joyful celebrations full of love, happiness, and beauty… oh, and stress. Lots and lots of stress. No one wants dark under-eye circles, stress breakouts, or dull, tired skin captured in photos that will be stared at for years to come. That’s why we asked our very own esthetician and bride-to-be, Suzannah, to share her best skincare tips for all the other brides out there!
Having a complete home care regimen is absolutely key to making visible improvements in your skin. If anything, this is the most important of all my advice. The sooner you start, the better. So what exactly is included in a complete home care regimen?
- CLEANSER – It really is important to cleanse in the morning, as well as night, because your skin is secreting oil and working on turning over dead cells as you sleep. So, choose your favorite gentle cleanser to freshen up that gorgeous skin every morning! Anything you love can work for you, but generally, those with oily skin will prefer a gel or foaming cleanser, while those with drier skin will love a milk cleanser.
- PREVENTATIVE TREATMENT(S) – This is where you’re going to pick a product to keep your skin healthy, happy, and prevent any damage or worsening effects before your big day. My go-to choice here would be a Vitamin C serum. Vitamin C will act as a shield against environmental stressors like pollutants, smog, free radicals, etc. that cause damage like wrinkles and brown spots. My personal pick, as a bride, is the Eminence Organics Rosehip Triple C+E Firming Oil. This is the first product I ever used that truly changed my skin. It will protect the skin, but it also deeply hydrates and smooths out wrinkles. 3 drops and you’re absolutely glowing! Trust me!
- EYE CREAM – No one wants puffy eyes from all the meltdowns or dark circles from the stress of planning (oh come on, I know this isn’t just me?!) A good eye cream is a staple for anyone. Not only do they correct, but they prevent these unwanted things, too. So even if those bags haven’t come (lucky girl!), get that eye cream and thank me later.
- MOISTURIZER – Lock in all that goodness, babe! When I hear that a client rarely remembers to use a moisturizer, I cringe. It is so important to keep your skin’s moisture barrier happy because that’s what protects it. A good one for any bride and any skin type is the iS CLINICAL Reparative Moisture Emulsion. It’s super hydrating and has beautiful anti-aging properties to keep your skin looking young, but it’s also an excellent prep step for makeup!
- SUNSCREEN – Might I remind you that your skin is the largest organ of your body? Keep it safe! And I will actually beg you, on my knees and everything, to reapply that sunscreen throughout the day. Applying it once in the morning is wonderful, but it will wear off quickly, and then it’s like you never put it on at all. It doesn’t matter how dark your skin is, whether or not you burn, or how rainy it may be outside. The sun will damage your skin is so many more ways than you realize, and wearing sunscreen is not as hard as it is to fight me on wearing sunscreen! I have two picks for the bride’s bag. The first is the SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense. It has an SPF 50, is super lightweight, and it’s beautifully tinted. Don’t worry, any skin tone can use it. I’m basically translucent and I love it. It will leave you with instantly dewy skin; forget the splotchy, white skin you’re used to with sunscreen! My second pick is to throw in your purse for reapplying your SPF throughout the day. It is the Eminence Organics Sun Defense Minerals. It’s a powder, so you can reapply it on top of your makeup! You can choose translucent or a shade to match your skin tone, give you a little bronze, whatever you like. But I love it because the powder is built right into the brush, so there’s no fuss!
- CLEANSER – You can use whatever cleanser you picked for your morning routine, but if you’re looking for a good one to take off makeup that is amazing for any skin type, it’s the Eminence Organics Stone Crop Cleansing Oil. Oil cancels out oil, so even the oiliest skin can use this safely! And for those of you with dry skin, it’ll nourish and condition it like no other. But my favorite part about this cleanser is that easily dissolves makeup and attracts stubborn dirt out of your pores for an incredibly deep cleanse.
- EXFOLIANT – This step is super important! Choose 3 days a week to use an exfoliating cleanser on your skin. Not every day, because you’ll strip your skin down, weakening it and irritating it, and not every once in a blue moon either, because you’ll get a build-up of dead skin and oil, clogging your pores and giving you a dull, breakout-prone complexion. If your skin is sensitive or you struggle with cystic acne, I’d stay away from a scrub with granules in it. It can be irritating or cause the infection from acne to spread. For you ladies, choose an exfoliant that is of a smooth consistency but has chemical exfoliants in it, like Lactic Acid.
- CORRECTIVE TREATMENT(S) – “Beauty sleep” is a real thing! Your skin goes to work when you sleep, so take advantage of that! This is where you choose something that focuses on the area of your skin you want to change. For most brides, I’d suggest the Eminence Organics Mangosteen Daily Resurfacing Concentrate. It will not only work on resurfacing your skin and keeping it smooth and free of dead skin build-up, but… drum roll, please… IT WILL REDUCE PORE SIZE. Yep. Sold, aren’t ya? Hint: If you’re using more than one treatment, layer them starting with the one with the thinnest consistency, to the thickest.
- EYE CREAM – Just a little pea size is enough for both eyes, my dear!
- MOISTURIZER – You can use your daily moisturizer here, too, but if you like something thicker while you sleep, my pick is the SkinCeuticals Triple Lipid Restore 2:4:2. It’s full of lipids, hence the name, which are extremely moisturizing, nourishing, and reparative. This cream will work wonders while you sleep, smoothing out wrinkles, plumping the skin, and perfecting everything about the appearance, including skin texture and the look of pores.
The analogy I’ve always used is that your home regimen is your diet, and the spa is the gym. One is better than none, but together, you’ll see faster results and be your healthiest self. Ideally, you should start getting regular monthly facials 12 months before your wedding, but just start as soon as you can! My favorite facial for this is the Pumpkin Enzyme Facial with added Oxygen. Pumpkin is our strongest peel at Sanctuary Spa before you get to the hearty stuff that actually makes your skin flake. It is deeply exfoliating, brightening, and also treats acne. Oxygen is literally your ticket to dreamy wedding skin. It will plump the skin, leaving it dewy, hydrated, and radiant, but it also helps to remove toxins and is antibacterial. What stress acne?
3 days before your wedding, book an Oxygen Facial with Dermaplaning. Dermaplaning is a form of exfoliation where the top layer of your skin is manually removed with a scalpel in a motion that looks a bit like shaving. It’s painless, and in the process, all the peach fuzz and facial hair is removed, leaving baby soft skin that makes your makeup look flawless. Just be sure to tell your esthetician that your wedding is coming up so she knows not to use any treatments that may irritate your skin.
I’m really, really sorry to be the one telling you this, because I love bread. But your skin truly is a reflection of your gut. If you can swing it, a month before your wedding you should nix gluten, dairy, any type of added sugar, and add lots and lots of dark, leafy greens. This will drastically clear up your skin and leave you glowing. If a month isn’t feasible, at least do this a week or so before your big day. It’s a small price to pay, but trust me, if the amazing skin isn’t enough, just think about how extra delicious that wedding cake and champagne will be!