There's no denying that your wedding dress should be the star of the show, but no way does that mean your bridal beauty should take a backseat. We're not talking about the work of your hair stylist or makeup artist either - taking care of your skin should be a priority for every bride. After all, you want to ensure that you're glowing from the inside out, and while highlighters and bronzers can work wonders, having a natural, near-flawless complexion to start out with is ideal.
BRIDES spoke with Allison Marks, spa manager at ARCONA, and Wei Young Brian, founder and CEO of WEI beauty, to get the scoop on everything you should be doing to prep your face for your wedding. Follow this six month timeline closely if your goal is to have a clear, bright, and beautiful complexion for your big day.
6 Months Before
Both Wei Young Brian and Allison Marks agree - figuring out a personalized regimen should be your first priority. This skincare routine should focus on brightening, lifting, and toning your face, as well as other parts of your body like your arms and back - especially if they'll be exposed in your wedding dress. "Set aside time both morning and evening to properly cleanse skin and remove all dirt and impurities, which can lead to breakouts," says Young Brian. "Also, keep your skin properly hydrated with a good moisturizing system." This would also be a great time to start getting monthly facials. Marks recommends visiting a professional esthetician if you're not sure where to start. (Basic Five Normal Skin Type Package, $234, ARCONA)
See More: 50 Pre-Wedding Skincare Products for Every Complexion Type
3-4 Months Before
You should be a pro with your at-home skincare regimen by now, and receiving monthly facials should be a part of your routine. If you're concerned about blackheads, make sure you see a professional to take care of them ASAP. "If you are going to do any extractions, make sure they are done well in advance no extractions within two weeks of the wedding," Young Brian warns BRIDES. It's also a good idea to visit your facialist or dermatologist to see if there's anything that should be adjusted in your skincare regimen, according to Marks. (WEI Chinese Rose Foaming Cleanser, $32, available at Birchbox)
1-2 Months Before
Now's not the time to get lazy. "Consistency is key!," says Marks. You should be beyond vigilant with your prescribed routine, making sure to incorporate weekly brightening and exfoliating masks, and also double cleansing every night to avoid breakouts. Marks also recommends starting each morning by drinking warm water with lemon and one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar - this good-for-your-face concoction will help purify your skin. (Brightening Gommage, $52, ARCONA)
The Week Before
Leave the exfoliating masks and scrubs behind- now's the time to hydrate your skin. Marks recommends using an at-home peel, followed by a soothing, hydrating mask. She also discourages you from trying out any new beauty products, saying, "You can't always predict how your skin will react." (Rice Sprout Express Glow Illuminating Mask Pack of 6, $60, WEI Beauty)
The Day Before
Marks encourages beginning your day with a yoga class or a run to increase your circulation. If you can help it, avoid sugary and salty foods, and caffeine and alcohol, as they can be extremely dehydrating. If in the unfortunate event you have a breakout 24 hours before your wedding, do not panic - "Go to the dermatologist. They will take good care of you," says Young Brian. If it's a normal blemish, avoid touching it and whatever you do, do not try to pop it. "This can inflame the blemish, slowing the healing and creating a scar," says Marks. Instead, use a spot treatment, like a mud mask, to expedite healing. (Golden Root Purifying Mud Mask, $42, available at Birchbox)
The Day Of
Today's your day to shine! Marks recommends starting the day by sipping on a non-sugary green juice while wearing a hydrating mask prior to having your makeup applied. To keep your skin fresh and glowing, Marks also recommends using a hydrating mist over your makeup. (Wine Hydrating Mask, $42, arcona.com)