Bridal Beauty Tips

This is IT! The week of Kate’s wedding! Oh yeah, and William’s, too. But really, it’s all about Kate. I wonder what her plans are until Friday. I can’t really remember the week of my wedding. Rehearsal dinner memories are there, but I think the week before was just an emotional rollercoaster.

When the last few weeks before the wedding arrive, it’s all about tying up those loose ends before the big day so that you can actually enjoy it.  The more you prepare and think ahead, the better you’ll feel. has 33 wonderful Bridal Beauty Tips to make sure you not only feel fabulous, but look fabulous as well.

1. Play it safe:  If you’re considering making a drastic change (i.e. lightening brows, changing hair color, doing an intense tan), think twice. Changing your look so significantly before such a big event can be a big mistake. Instead, aim to look like yourself—just enhanced.

2. Add some va-va-voom:  Who needs a wedding gown when you’re wearing this shimmering, scented body powder, post-reception of course. (They recommend Victoria’s Secret Sexy Little Things Noir Scented Body Powder $25).

3. Give your hairstylist a head’s up: Let your hairstylist know if you’re planning on using any type of hair accessory or scarf. Take cues (and recommendations) from friends who’ve worn similar styles.

4. Banish bumps: If you have small red bumps on the back of your arms, chances are it’s not acne. Keratosis Pilaris is a very common skin condition that occurs when dead skin cells don’t shed as they should. Use lotions and washes with lactic acid to help unclog pores leading up to the big day.

5. Lash out: Thanks to certain celebs (ahem, the Kardashians) mega-lashes are one of the most popular bridal beauty looks. If you opt to get lash extensions, use falsies, try a semi-permanent tint like Lash Dip, or even just buy a new mascara, road-test the look a few months out. Though rare, reactions to the glues and dyes can happen.

6. Stop a sweat emergency:  If your deodorant is not cutting it, don’t panic. Since your sweat doesn’t actually smell until it comes in contact with bacteria on your skin, mop up any dampness with a paper towel and dab antibacterial hand gel under your arms to squash unpleasant odors.

7. Prep like a pro:  Celebrity facialists swear by this electric eye-enhancing serum applicator (it uses sonic motion to help ingredients absorb faster and better). Splurge on one for yourself for eye-enhancing results that will last for many anniversaries. (They recommend Clarisonic Opal Sonic Infusion System $245).

8. Be ready to be on full-circle display:  When prepping for beauty that spans 360 degrees, treat the skin on your chest, arms, and back like you would the skin on your face. Use glycolic washes to prevent blemishes and rich emollients to improve tone.

9. Take a time out:  Staring at your Blackberry and frowning at caterers will only give you wedding-day creases. In the middle of your party-planning hoopla, take a moment for yourself and unwind.

10. Have a game plan for reapplications:  Most brides hardly have a chance to eat, let alone precisely reapply lip gloss and other makeup. Go over your touch-up strategy with your makeup artist or MOH to ensure that they’re on-board with your plan.

11. Troubleshoot like a celebrity:  Gwyneth Paltrow had this flyaway fixer in her bag during the Oscars. Any bride worried about frizz should follow suit. (John Freida Full Repair Touchup Flyaway Tamer, $9.99).

12. Expect the worst:  Murphy’s Law applies to weddings (and bridal beauty) too. Troubleshoot as much as possible by packing back-up makeup (in case the makeup artist doesn’t have your shade), pins and hair elastics (should you suddenly decide you want a different updo), and clear nail polish (for tears in your veil).

13. Get your glow on:  Get your faux glow two days before the big day. A salon spray tan or at-home self-tanner will look its best 24-48 hours after application. Try out different formulas for the months leading up to your wedding to find the one that suits you and your skintone best.

14. Chow down: Exercising and eating well to trim down for the big day is one thing. Not eating to look as slender as possible is just silly—and it will backfire. When blood sugar levels drop, your skin can get pale and clammy.

15. Avoid bug bites: Because no bride should have to deal with mosquito welts at her wedding, stock up on natural insect repellent.

16. Brighten your smile:  Avoid coffee, tea, and dark soda to prevent staining your pearly whites. Discuss tooth-whitening options with your dentist if you’d prefer more noticeable results.

17. Sculpt away those final 5 pounds: Enjoy the catering (you’ve paid enough for it!) and apply bronzer to the hallow of your cheeks to shave a pound or two off of your face.

18. Treat ingrown hairs: The days leading up to your wedding should not be filled with DIY skin experiments, like extracting an in-grown hair (inflammation and irritation are all but certain). Instead, make an appointment with your dermatologist, who can make a tiny incision to extricate the ingrown hair.

19. Use a high-tech deoderant: Find a heavy-duty deodorant that has long-lasting results. New options, like this one, work harder the more you move, leaving you no reason to hold back during the Electric Slide.

20. Go boho if you’re wearing a lot of bling: Balance statement pieces (like big necklaces) with soft, natural hair and makeup.

21. Protect your color:  Get a touch-up two weeks before the big day and use color-preserving shampoos and conditioners to maintain results.

22. Give blemishes TLC:  Just don’t pop them. Squeezing only irritates skin, making it redder and more swollen. Instead, ice the pimple for a few minutes before covering it with a liquid concealer. The cold temps help reduce inflammation.

23. Don’t risk a reaction: It might seem a little paranoid, but skin allergies caused by dyes and artificial fragrances can happen—even at the most inopportune times. Reduce your risk of an outbreak (also known as contact dermatitis) and stick to laundry detergents formulated for sensitive skin for the month before your wedding.

24. Pamper your paws: If your wedding band is a different color than your engagement ring, ask your manicurist what nail polish shades best match the other metal.

25. Master the bridal blush: Experiment with new textures, like cream blushes, to perfect your flush.

26. Shimmer to look slimmer: Don’t let your face have all the fun. Use shimmering powders and creams to accent your collarbone and shoulders. Highlighting the curvature of your bone structure will also have a slimming effect.

27. Primer for eyeshadow: Using an eye shadow primer ensures smudge-free makeup, a must when you’re wearing all white.

28. Consider climate before applying makeup: Especially for brides getting married in warmer climates, consider using as many oil-free products as possible — primer, moisturizer, foundation, etc. — and keeping oil-free blotting sheets on hand.

29. Get some zen: Even if you’re not in the mood to do a down-ward facing dog, get instant zen with a swish or a swipe of one of these lavender-infused towlettes. (Herban Essential Yoga Towelettes).

30. Wax it off:  Whether you have an appointment with a professional or you’re going the DIY route, make sure that the hair is at least 1/4 inch long when you go in for your session and avoid extreme heat or exercise for 24 hours post-wax to prevent irritation.

31. Be prepared to cry:  Whether you’re fighting hot temperatures (or tears of happiness) accept that your bridal makeup will melt or smudge. Use waterproof mascara (you can condition lashes before and after to prevent drying) and keep makeup-removing cotton swabs on hand, like these ones.

32. Favor fuss free hair: If your ‘do starts to droop, don’t bother trying to restore it. Instead, opt for a chic ponytail. For extra flair, take a small piece of hair from underneath the ponytail and wrap it around the base to hide the elastic.

33. Wash it all off:  If possible, try to suds up right after the wedding. Styling products, makeup, and sweat can cause body blemishes that will last through your honeymoon.