Seeking that illustrious bridal glow? Of course you are. Few times in your life actually command all to rise from their seats to feast their eyes upon your beauty as you walk into view. For such an occasion, looking "good" just doesn't cut it. You need to look once-in-a-lifetime fabulous. Feeling the pressure? Fortunately, the one thing you can control on your wedding day is your bridal look. For while that fabled glow won't just miraculously arrive in time for the big day, careful planning and prep work can ensure your most radiant self walks down that aisle. To avoid last minute beauty blunders - here's what you need to do now, and what can wait until your final hours of singlehood
Get Started Now! (or about 6 months out)
1) Get Great Skin - Now's the time to address any skin problems you've tolerated; rid your skin of acne, sun damage, scars or wrinkles. Book an appointment with your dermatologist and discuss treatment options, such as retinol creams, lasers, skin lighteners or chemical peels.
2) Get In Shape - If you haven't already, start a fitness and nutrition routine that you can live with - and stick with until your wedding day (and beyond!). Need some motivation? Join the bridal boot camp craze. These fitness programs geared towards brides are popping up all over the country.
3) Plan Your Look - As soon as you've found "the dress," decide how you want to wear your hair and makeup for the big day. Start growing your hair if you think you'll want it longer. Now's the time to test new looks. If you're contemplating a drastic cut or color change - do it now - and leave time to get used to your new do, or change it back.
3-6 Months Out
1) Hire Your Pros - If you love your stylist and are getting married locally, make sure he or she is available on your date. Otherwise, start auditioning stylists for the big day. Many hair stylists also offer makeup services and are willing to travel, while others do not.
2) Get a Facial - To ensure positively glowing skin on your wedding day, start a regimen of monthly facials
1 Month Out
1) Make those Whites Pearly - Schedule a teeth cleaning, and if necessary, consider whitening your teeth. Crest white strips are a painless, inexpensive way to whiter teeth. Or if your budget allows, have them professionally whitened.
2) Go for a Trial Run - Schedule your consultation with your hair stylist and makeup artist for about one month prior. You should have your veil and any hair pieces at this time.
3) Fake a Tan - Experiment with tanners, bronzers, lotions, tanning beds etc. Give yourself enough time to ensure the look is natural and to your liking.
4) Banish Cellulite - Be bikini-ready for your honeymoon. Prep your thighs and any problem areas with cellulite cream. One to try - Revlon Sublime Slim. Apply twice daily, and reduce the appearance of cellulite in four weeks.
1-2 Weeks Out
1) Cut and Color - The best time to schedule your final cut and color is 1-2 weeks out - to ensure enough time to fix any last minute color mishaps. Avoid doing anything too drastic.
2) Shape your hair "down there" - Make an appointment to have your bikini line waxed (you don't want to fumble with razors on your honeymoon), and have any other waxing done now (eyebrows, upper lip, legs). This will allow enough time for any redness to fade.
3) Get your last facial - Again, leave enough time for any acne/redness to fade.
The Day Before
1) Put on the Polish - Get your final manicure and pedicure the day before so nails can thoroughly dry. Get a bottle of your polish from the manicurist for last minute touch-ups.
2) Go Light on Sodium and Curb the Alcohol - Have fun, but don't go crazy at your rehearsal dinner. Too much salt and alcohol leads to eye puffiness.
3) Pack an Emergency Kit - Include tissues, nail file, breath mints, bobby pins and nail polish. Get pressed powder and lipstick from your makeup artist.
4) Get that Beauty Sleep - Avoid caffeine and exercise before attempting to go to bed. If you just can't get enough shut-eye, freeze moistened green or white tea bags to put over your eyes the next day. The tannins will help reduce any puffiness.
1) Eat Breakfast - Avoid anything to fatty or salty. Instead eat fibrous carbs and lean protein for energy.
2) Drink plenty of Water - Try to drink at least 32 oz in the eight hours leading up to the ceremony.
3) Give Yourself Time - Bride's typically begin their hair about three hours in advance, followed by makeup.
4) Relax and Smile - You know you look fabulous!
For more articles and advice to help you plan your wedding, visit Elegala.com's complete Wedding Planning guide.