1. SKIN SPA
If you haven’t had time for a facial, do your own. Start off with exfoliating. Removing dead skin cells brightens the skin and gives it a fresh, even look. Once you have newly polished skin, anything you apply on to it will be well absorbed and highly effective. Next apply a mask, preferably a hydrating mask to ensure a nice, plump and dewy skin. We like Givenchy’s Skin Drink Mask and Clarins Beauty Flash Balm. Finish off with a boosting serum, Estée Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair is a superb serum that tightens and refreshes the skin instantly. For best results do this the night before your wedding day – you’ll wake up glowing.
2. EYE SPY
To deal with puffy eyes, try this soothing and cost-effective remedy: First soak two rooibos teabags in hot water. Then leave them in the fridge to cool. Apply the chilled rooibos teabags to your eyes while relaxing in the bath for a good 10 minutes. Another good alternative is crushed cucumber with a bit of natural yoghurt. It’s very cooling and soothing: you can apply it directly to the eyes or place the mixture in muslin squares first if you don’t want to get too messy. If you need a quick fix for puffiness and dark circles and don’t have time for the homemade cures, use Garnier Nutritionist Eye Roll-On – it works brilliantly, instantly refreshing the eye area and removing puffiness.
3. GLOSSY LOCKS
Most hairdressers recommend not washing your hair on the day of your wedding, as upstyles tend to hold better that way. However, you do want your hair to look shiny and healthy. To make sure your hair looks its best, use a hair mask and leave-in conditioner two days before your wedding. We like L’Oréal Professionnel’s Oiliss Softening Mask with grapeseed and avocado oils, available from select salons. Apply the product and wrap your hair in cling film for 20 minutes, then give yourself an invigorating scalp massage and rinse clean.
4. GLOWING SKIN
Get rid of dry scaly skin on your body by using a dry body brush. Before getting into the shower or bath, dry brush your body, starting at your feet and working up your body in circular movements to your neck, avoiding your nipples. If you prefer using a body scrub, try a homemade blend of sugar and olive oil, apply to dry skin, scrub your body, then rinse off in the shower. A loofah will also do the trick. Finish by applying a nourishing moisturiser all over your body and your skin will look and feel silky smooth. We love Justine’s Tissue Oil Nourishing Body Mousse for an all-over gleam.
5. OOH LA LA LASHES
A great way to up the glam factor with your makeup, is to add false lashes. You can get a well-priced set of lashes, available in a wide variety of options, from individual lashes to half lashes to thin and thick full sets. We recommend a natural single layer (not too long) and black eyelash glue. Put a dollop of lash glue on to a piece of tinfoil, using a tweezer gently dip the base of the lashes into the glue, then apply on to the eyelid as close as possible to the lash line. Have a toothpick on hand to help press down and place the lashes.
6. MAKEUP DIY
If you haven’t booked a makeup artist and need help in a hurry, visit www.youtube.com. They have a variety of good tutorials that give step by step makeup application advice. Always remember that less is more, the basic essentials include concealer, foundation, eyeliner, mascara and lipstick.
7. BROW WOW
Whatever you do, don’t leave your brows unattended and, if possible, have them done professionally. If you have to do them yourself, make sure you use decent tools. Tweezerman tweezers, available at DisChem Pharmacies, are good quality and precise. Ensure that you have a magnifying mirror and good natural light before plucking. Cleanse the area thoroughly and use an eyeliner or eyebrow pencil to draw in the brow’s natural line as this will act as a guideline and prevent over-plucking. Gently pull the skin of the outer edge of your eyebrow up and out so that you can see what you’re doing and create a bit of tension when pulling out the hair. Remove stray hairs first, then carefully re-shape your brows bit by bit. From the bottom, follow the natural shape of your brows and pluck hair out in the direction it grows. Keep checking the line in a distant mirror so that you don’t overdo it.
8. TEETH WHITENING
Nothing brightens up your appearance like brilliant white teeth. Most of us need tooth whitening products to get rid of nasty stains caused by alcohol, food, or nicotine. Going the DIY route isn’t as effective as having professional whitening done at the dentist, however there are some over the counter products that do help. The mildest products are whitening toothpastes – they won’t make a massive difference but will give a slight improvement. Home kits seem a little daunting but aren’t too complicated. Basically you apply a gel or liquid to your teeth and wear a mouth tray overnight. You will need to use this for one to two weeks before seeing a difference.
9. POLISHED POUT
Give your lips the once over before your big day. Start by giving them a good scrub: you can use your facial exfoliator or brush them with a clean damp toothbrush to get rid of any dry, flaky skin. Next, apply a thick layer of lip balm – we recommend Blistex DCT which is very healing. Remember to check for hair on the upper lip. Even a blonde moustache is not attractive as it catches the light and tends to clog up with base. Have a professional lip wax and ensure that the salon has a soothing anti-bacterial cream like Dettol Antiseptic Cream to apply afterwards. If not, get your own and apply liberally after the wax.
10. BRONZED UP
Applying self tan is tricky. However having a bit of colour on your wedding day gives a healthy glow to your skin. Whatever you do, don’t go overboard! We recommend Tan in a Can by Caribbean Tan. They have a variety of shades, it doesn’t have an offensive odour and it spreads evenly. Do a test run a week before your wedding so you know what to expect. Remember to wipe off hands, feet, heels, knees and elbows with a damp sponge after application to prevent uneven, darker patches.