The Big Day Glow

March 16th, 2016

Wondering how to get that beautiful glow on your wedding day? If you really want to get your skin in top form, you’ll need to start a smart skincare routine about a year in advance. It’s okay if you don’t have that long before the wedding day — just adopt these good skincare habits as soon as possible. Here are some skincare tips that will change your big day AND your life!

1. Schedule Professional Facials

Your wedding is the perfect excuse for some extra pampering. You’ll want to book monthly facials to really refresh your skin. Experienced aestheticians will massage your skin, scalp and décolletage to stimulate blood circulation and keep your skin looking pink, not sallow. You can also request extractions. This is when your facialist gets all the dirt out of your pores. The process takes preparation and special techniques that, if done at home, can lead to irritation, or worse, scarring.

2. Eat More Watermelon

No matter what your skin type is — oily, dry, normal or combo — it craves water. Sure, drinking water helps, but snacking on watermelon works too. Other super foods for your face: grapefruit, broccoli and lettuce and you’ll sure have the “baby feel” like skin!

3. Skin Care Routine

A proper skincare treatment is important because your pores are still open to the environment.  This step will close pores, keep the good ingredients in and the bad stuff out including pollutants, bacterias, environmental harshnesses and more.  Don’t get a facial within 5 days of your wedding.  This is also an important step in the moisturizing process.  Restoring the skin’s natural moisture will slow down the aging process, help out with sensitivity, and just keep your face feeling and looking better.

*Bubbles and foam are bad!

They destroy the delicate lipid barrier of the skin and ruin the skin’s natural moisture process.  Instead, if a cleanser does what it should, it will pull impurities out of your skin, open up the pores and clean the dead skin, dirt and bacteria from your face.

*Use skin-specific moisturizer

- For oily skin: You don’t want to add much more moisture, but you do want to hydrate.   Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid or ferulic acid, both of which help your skin   maintain water.

- For dry skin: Stick with the hyaluronic acid or ferulic acid, but don’t worry about finding   an oil-free formula. Your skin craves moisture.

- For breakout-prone skin: Choose a moisturizer that’s noncomedogenic. It should say so   on the bottle.

- For sensitive skin: Your go-to is a fragrance-free product.

*Toner - is it necessary?

Unquestionably YES! The toner, in fact, may be the one thing missing from your skin care routine that could make all the difference. Here’s why:

- Toner balances the skin’s PH, which may be disrupted during the cleansing process.

- It also works to prep the skin for moisturizers, serum, and other treatments.

- Toner helps remove residual dirt, makeup, oil, and other impurities.

- Specific toners address certain skin concerns, including sensitivity, acne, discolorations   and anti-aging.

*DON’T use cotton balls to apply your toner because you waste product – use GAUZE pads!

*SPF - Sun protection is the single most important way to keep your skin young and healthy looking. Dull, rough skin and uneven skin tone — are related to chronic sun exposure.

- Wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays with    an SPF of 30 or higher, even on cloudy days.

- Wear SPF 30 on Your Lips. It’s easier to prevent your lips from getting chapped than it    is to repair them if they’re already dry and cracked. If you spend lots of time outdoors,    especially in windy, sunny or cold weather, a thick balm with SPF 30 will keep your lips    hydrated.

*Side note* If you have deep wrinkles, severely dry skin, scar tissue such as old acne marks etc. you should consider a course of micro-dermabrasion or alternatively, an acid peel.

4. Avoid Excessive Alcohol and Salt

Both are culprits that cause major water retention. Ban the bloat by opting for fresh herbs to flavor foods rather than table salt. Also, cut back on refined sugars and caffeine—both increase puffiness — try caffeine-free herbal tea instead.

5. Preparation On the Day Before

The most important task for you today is to get plenty of rest and a good night’s sleep. Lack of sleep can produce darkness or puffiness under your eyes, redness to the whites of your eyes and can make you nervous.

Try not to wear any make-up the day before your wedding to give your skin a good rest. If you must wear make-up, then be sure you are extra diligent tonight with your cleansing, toning and moisturizing.

If you are stressed or excited on this day then try a relaxing aromatherapy massage in your room before going to sleep.

Finally… On Your Wedding Day!

You have prepared everything in advance and the only thing you have to do is to relax and let your make-up artist and hair stylist make you look like the princess you are.

Last Minute Checklist: Beauty Tricks on Your Wedding Day

February 27th, 2011

Here comes the Bride!

Bridal makeup is tricky: The last thing you want to do is to walk down the aisle with foundation streaks on your jaw or super “blushy” cheeks.  Upon reviewing your wedding pictures, you’ll wonder why you hadn’t just hired a Makeup Pro. If you want to do it on your own and want to make it right, here are some tips that will ensure you look your very best on your wedding day and beyond:

A key to ensuring that your makeup last as long as you, especially on your big day, is to remember to always put on a makeup primer before applying additional makeup. Choose a primer that doesn’t contain oil or silicone. It’ll act as a sponge for your foundation, keeping it in place and preventing it from seeping into or slipping off of your skin all day long.

Choose an oil-free, long-wearing foundation that’s designed to stay in place by absorbing oil and locking in any moisture. This will ensure that your makeup stays on your face instead of rubbing off on your stark white gown.

If you didn’t get enough water or sleep during your weekend favor-assembling session, and your skin is beyond washed-out, fix it with a few drops of brightening gel and mix it with your foundation for a subtle glow.

Judging from the doll-like blush circles and chinstrap of foundation, you went overboard to wear more makeup than usual on your wedding day. To fix it, make sure you carry some round makeup sponges (or better yet have your maid of honor carry some for you) ; they get into tough-to-reach areas, like the corners of your eyes and ensure no lines are left behind.

A zit on your big day?! Well, it happens but doesn’t mean you have to accept it! Dab antibiotic cream on it to stop oil from seeping into your pores. Avoid acne creams as they’ll dry out your skin and make the blemish harder to cover up. When you’re ready for makeup, use a creamy, oil-free concealer.

Tired, dark-circled eyes are the enemy of gorgeous wedding photos, making a great under-eye concealer a must for all  bride. Invest time in searching for and finding the right concealer before your big day. The creamy texture, with vitamin-E-enriched concealer ensures that it won’t crease or flake, apply it slightly with your ring finger which helps mimic the natural skin texture of the under-eye area.

Finally, if you and your ladies were out in the sun enjoying your last gasp of single life, and you are afraid that you are going to resemble a lobster in a bright, white strapless dress, don’t panic. Take ibuprofen to minimize the inflammation; getting the puffiness out of your skin is step one. Then, use a light green-tinted moisturizer. The color will neutralize the redness.

Enjoy your big day ladies!

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Know When Makeup and Beauty Products Expires

February 11th, 2011

I know how much you love that perfect pink lipstick. Or the eyeliner that’s been sharpened down to no more than a nub. But there comes a point when you have to let go and accept the reality that your favorite beauty products eventually become breeding grounds for bacteria. Here’s how to know what’s still good and what’s past its prime.


This is the makeup item you should be most vigilant about: As the brush is taken out, applied, and put back in the tube, it brings with it any bacteria that has collected along the way. Lingering bacteria can cause redness and itchiness, or even conjunctivitis (a.k.a. pinkeye) and sties. Switch mascara every two to three months to be safe. It will also have a distinct gasoline-like smell once it’s gone bad. If you develop any negative symptoms, immediately throw out any of your eye makeup that may have been contaminated. If your eyes are still irritated a day or two later, see an eye doctor.


With the exception of powder formulas, all foundations are water-based, which means bacteria love them. Unopened, foundation can last for a couple of years, but once the seal is broken,  it’s best to replace it after 6 to 12 months. Keep foundations out of moist environments (such as your bathroom) and away from heat, as high temperatures encourage the growth of the bugs and can speed up the spoiling—true for beauty products in general. An off smell or a change in color tells you the formula is finished—applying it could cause irritation or breakouts.


Concealers are meant to cover blemishes, not cause them—which is what can happen if you use a concealer that’s too old. You’ll know it’s gone bad because the color will start to shift. Concealers in powder and stick form can last for up to two years, while liquids should be tossed after one.

Face Powder

Powders are the Energizer Bunny of makeup. They keep going…and going—at least, for up to two years. Still, some powders contain small amounts of water from botanical extracts, so there’s the risk of it growing bacteria if you leave it lying around your bathroom. Look on the ingredients panel for long Latin names—these are often botanicals, and their common names (such as oat extract, chamomile, aloe, bamboo, and green-tea extracts) are typically listed in parentheses.


The same rules that apply to face powder apply to powder blush, since neither contain water. Cream blush, however, should be replaced after a year. To prolong the life of any blush,  cleaning your blush brush regularly and storing the color in a dark, dry place. If your blush gets wet, you run the risk of promoting bacterial growth. Moisture can come in the form of residue from your foundation and face cream as well. If you’re applying blush over these products, the oils cling to the bristles and transfer to the blush. This will eventually cause a dull gray film to form on powder formulas, or a white, chalky layer on top of creams. To prevent this from happening, after applying foundation and moisturizer, wait a couple minutes before putting on blush. You can also blot excess oils from your face first, then, after your blush is on, immediately wipe off your brush with a dry towel. With powders or creams, texture is also an indicator—if the formula has become so hard it won’t budge from the compact, it’s time to buy a new one.

Eye Shadow

You want an Eye-enhancing shadows but be careful of the Eye-irritating ones. To keep your eyes from getting red or itchy, replace powder eye shadows after about three months. Even though they are similar in formulation to other powders, because they’re constantly in contact with a mucous membrane, there’s a higher risk of transferring bacteria to the product and then back to the eyes. Pay extra attention to cream-based shadows, which tend to grow bacteria more quickly than powders. If you use your fingers to apply, wash your hands before doing so, and be aware of any color switches or off-putting smells.


Liquid or pencil, these eye definers should be replaced about every three months. Like eye shadows, they are applied near a sensitive area and can pick up bacteria and bring it back to the eye very easily without any visible signs of contamination. If you’ve used a dingy liner, you could experience redness, itchiness, or, in extreme cases, conjunctivitis. Pencils will last a bit longer than liquid if you’re steadfast about regular sharpening, but you’ll know they’re dead once a white film starts to develop on the tip that can’t be sharpened off.

Lipstick & Lip Gloss

The wrong lipstick color may spoil your mood—but the risk of the formula spoiling (or growing bacteria) is low since they don’t contain any water. But since they’re repeatedly exposed to the mouth area, he suggests replacing lip products after a year, or if you’ve recently been sick. Lipsticks and lip glosses contain oily ingredients that start to smell like stale cooking oil over time, also to look out for changes in texture. “You’ll know a lipstick has gone bad when it gets hard and you can’t spread the pigment on your lips; lip gloss will feel streaky and globby if you try to apply it.”

Makeup Brushes & Applicators

Grungy beauty may be back this fall—but that shouldn’t include your makeup brushes. If cleaned and stored properly, good brushes can last for years, but when the bristles start to fray or fall out, it’s time for a new set. To keep them looking pristine, I suggests wiping them on a dry paper towel or washcloth after every use, and giving them a thorough cleaning every two weeks with a gentle hair shampoo. The best way to store them is propped upright in a glass, where they can air out and won’t be squashed and deformed. Cheap makeup sponges should be replaced after two uses—one side, then the other. (The exception: high-quality ones that come with a cleanser, such as the Beauty Blender, which clean out well.) Not only will old, porous sponges suck up too much makeup, but they are “little bacteria pits” if left sitting around.

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