No bride aspires to look "pretty good" on her wedding day (shocking, right?). After all, the photos will be on display for life. But in an effort to look and feel especially beautiful on their walk down the aisle, soon-to-be brides often splurge on beauty treatments that they haven't done before, says Yael Halaas, M.D., a board-certified facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon in New York City. In general, any beauty treatment that you're trying for the first time should be done a minimum of two weeks before your wedding day to give any unexpected reactions or irritations time to fade. Here, four wedding-week don'ts, and the best beauty products to try instead.
Pre Wedding Beauty Treatments #1: Botox
"Botox takes four to five days to kick in, and you wouldn't want to discover one day before the wedding that a brow has dropped or elevated unattractively," says Dr. Halaas.
Quick fix beauty products: If your wedding day is only a week away, experiment with a brow pencil to create a higher arch. Or try blending a highlighter into the inner corner of the eyes and brow bone for a wide-awake look, suggests Napoleon Perdis, a celebrity makeup artist and founder of the Napoleon Perdis Makeup Academy.
Pre Wedding Beauty Treatments #2: Chemical Peels
This type of facial is designed to dissolve dead skin cells and reveal brighter skin. It also helps erase fine lines and lighten dark blotches for a more even-toned complexion. "Do this at least two weeks before your wedding day because even a gentle chemical peel can cause drying that may be annoying to apply makeup over," says Dr. Halaas.
Quick fix beauty products: You can use glycolic pads daily the week before your wedding day to keep skin bright. "Speak to your doctor about getting a prescription product, because some of those at-home kits can be a little overzealous and cause irritation."
Pre Wedding Beauty Treatments #3: Fillers
Lip plumping is popular with brides, but filler in the lips can look swollen initially—which is not very photogenic. "All fillers can also cause bruising that may last up to two weeks, so be sure to give yourself time to heal," says Dr. Halaas.
Quick fix beauty products: "I'm all for plumping up your lips with ultra-easy and needle-free ingredients," says Perdis. Try Perdis' Love Bite Lip Plump, which contains cinnamon to stimulate rather than irritate, menthol to soothe, and Jojoba oil to nourish and hydrate your lips.
Pre Wedding Beauty Treatments #4: Microdermabrasion
Microdermabrasion, which uses a machine to buff skin, is also a commonly sought-after pre wedding beauty treatment, says Perdis. "I suggest not going the week before your wedding day because side effects may include redness, sensitivity, and breakouts." Avoid that stress by consulting with a professional three months before your wedding day to come up with a personalized routine.
Quick fix beauty products: The secret to getting a healthy glow without using harsh exfoliants is a balance of matte and shine, says Perdis. "Mix a small amount of a cream highlighter with foundation to give you the appearance of lit-from-within skin. To set your handiwork, matte the center of the face with a powder."