A gazillion things happen in the lead up to your wedding. Finding a dress, booking a venue, hunting down your dream photographer, sorting a wet weather plan, planning every small and intricate detail, but there’s one massive thing you’ll want to get onto quick smart. That ladies and gents, is your skin.
So with that, we’ve brought in an expert, because even though we’re not new to facials, we’re certainly not qualified enough to give out our ‘professional’ opinion. Read on to get all the expert tips from Sydney based beautician, Roslyn from Body By Design who not only has years of experience in beauty therapy, advanced skincare and is a yoga teacher, she’s also a nutritionist as well. Read her glowing Google reviews just for a taste of how insanely talented she is at getting to the root cause of any skin problem. Here’s what she said when we sat down to discuss wedding skincare and facials.
Photography via Charlotte Exton Photography.
EVERY FACIAL AND SKINCARE QUESTION YOU’VE EVER HAD
Hey Roslyn, what would you say is the ideal timeframe to start working on my skin for the lead up to the big day? Is it relevant to how damaged my skin is?
Hey WedShed. For me, it’s the whole picture – skin and/or weight loss as well as your overall well-being. I want to get to know my clients and what they’re planning to do to their skin in the lead up to the wedding, and what their needs are. This ranges from what their current challenges are with their skin, to if they are going to go off contraception two weeks before their wedding, as this can change everything in the lead up to your wedding (hello hormonal acne).
If you have acne or any congestion with your skin, this will typically require more work to get you back to an optimal state, therefore we’d need to start about 12 months out from your wedding date. Think of it as a home renovation for a house you’ve just purchased, it’s really going to take some time. The same goes for weight loss, 12 months lead time is ideal for any weight loss goal.
If you have acne, pigmentation, dermatitis or eczema, I am going to want to work on your skin for longer, so you’d fit in this 12-month category, as well as put you on supplementation and probiotics, so longer lead time is required here too.
If you have pretty happy and healthy skin, and you’re at an optimal weight but just want some extra glow for the day, then start 3 months out with your beauty therapist and focus on hydrated, plump and exfoliated skin which will make for the perfect base for makeup.
At Body by Design, I’m really focused on the holistic approach, looking at developing new healthy habits whether it’s how you treat your skin, or what you are putting in your body. It’s more of a life change if you will, rather than a quick fix. The best thing for me as a therapist is making sure my client feels incredible in their own skin on the day. I love the commitment of a bride to be, or a couple to be. They’re so motivated and it’s where you really see results.
Ok feck, so what if I’ve left my skincare and facials to the last minute. What can I do to get things moving fast?
If it’s a race to the finish and your wedding is just around the corner, don’t panic. Serious results can still happen 2-3 months out, but you’re going to want to see your therapist 2-3 times a week to get things moving fast.
I’ve heard heaps about light therapy. Should I consider it for my wedding?
LED or light therapy is very useful for collagen stimulation, incredible for acne and excellent for clients who have sensitive skin. If the client is in the 3 months to go category and there’s a lot to get done, it’s going to help your skin heal super fast thanks to its ability to speed up cellular renewal. This treatment also links in well with anything else that’s happening in your appointment too.
What kind of skin situations have you handled for brides before?
All sorts! No skin is the same. A shortened time frame is pretty common, it’s important that my client looks immaculate and extremely confident in their own skin. I strive for perfection and for my clients to be flawless for their big day.
I’ve also helped clients with scarring get back to a smoother canvas, which is ideal for your makeup application. Here I usually add in some needling and high-end treatments. As well as this, I’ve handled clients with bad acne, but in saying this, these are certainly my most rewarding and dedicated clients. Pigmentation is a pretty common issue for brides as well. There’s no problem too great to fix, so if you are feeling like there’s something you’re not too psyched about, do seek out a professional as there’s no greater feeling than being confident in your own skin.
What’s the biggest mistake you see people do with their skin?
Oh, there are plenty. One of the biggest mistakes is self-prescription or ordering things online based off what a friend said worked for them. Skin is SO personal, and I really can’t stress this enough. Some people know their skin really well, and others need some work to figure out what’s going to work best with them, or to seek out a professional to tell them what their skin needs.
Products vary so much, and people can find certain cleansers and scrubs way too harsh for their skin. Another issue is not knowing how to layer your products. For example, using coconut oil around your eyes and putting on your most expensive eye cream over the top which won’t even touch their skin afterwards because of the barrier from coconut oil. You definitely need to prepare the base properly before applying your high-end products.
Lastly, picking at your skin is a terrible habit and very difficult to stop once you’ve started. It is usually caused by a nervous habit. You never get the entire clogging or infection out, you only tend to mess with it and leave a scab or scarring behind. When it comes to extractions, please leave it to an expert. It’s a hard habit to break but it will make the world of difference to your skin. If you do have something pop up, book a last-minute short appointment with your therapist to get onto it fast. Tackle it while it’s fresh and the blemish won’t become a bigger problem.
Are there any peels or special treatments that you regularly do on your clients, if so, what?
Lactic, mandelic, azyme peels, brightening masks, LED, micros and needling (not really a peel, but definitely something I like to do in lead up to weddings). Again, depends on the client’s skin and what their needs are. These are all mainly used to remove scarring, remove pigmentation, combat congestion and clogged pores, normalise skin turnover and sebaceous activity. It suits a lot of different skin types.
Should I fake tan my face for the big day? If so, what’s a good way to do this without breaking out?
Fake tan is so great for any bride to be but please always do a trial. If you look very closely at where the tan goes onto your body or face, you’ll see discolouration in your pores. If you fake tan your face and have large pores, it can look like blackheads. However, if you’ve booked a makeup artist, they’re going to colour match you to perfection, so you don’t necessarily need to tan your face if you are concerned about this.
If it’s close to the day and you do get a breakout, it’s going to happen after the wedding, which can be also attributed back to alcohol consumption on the night, or little time to eat the right food because you’re busy mingling and celebrating.
I’ve usually not found a problem with breakouts, and if you do get them from fake tan, it’s generally due to a cheaper fake tan product. You only want to be applying a small amount to your face anyway – a light covering will do the job. The DHA content for a bridal tan is quite low anyway, sitting at around 11%, whereas a medium tan for a holiday is around 15% and for serious dark tan lovers, around 18%. While we’re on the topic of fake tans, my last final bit of advice is to always look for a green-based tan.
PRODUCTS AND AT HOME CARE
What skincare products do you love and why?
I love Ultraceuticals, for several reasons. I’ve worked with them for a very long time, so I know the outcome of the treatments I do, products I use, the services I provide, and the results I am going to get. I love that it’s an Australian brand, so you’re not paying for import costs and getting plenty of value for money. Not to mention it’s specifically designed for our environment and climate. So much thought goes into the formulations and it’s tested time and time again on real clients before being produced and sold. It’s also a very ethical and environmentally aware company with a conscious.
What are your essential Ultraceuticals products?
- Everyone must cleanse, but make sure it’s the right product and brand (see a professional for this!). The wrong cleanser will lead to your acid mantle being stripped, and it may also lead to your high-end products like your serums not being able to penetrate your skin because you’ve left a barrier behind. It can also lead to a harsh stripping of the skin. So cleanse, absolutely!
- Look after your eye area with a good quality serum and eye cream. Again, please make sure it’s specific to your skin type and good quality.
- I also love a liquid exfoliant and lastly, sunscreen is ESSENTIAL. It’s Australia after all.
On the topic of at-home skincare, I love layering, so if you’re using a range that goes together, layering is fine as the products are designed to go together and sit well on the skin. If you go to Google and select one cleanser from one brand, and one exfoliant from another without doing your research, then this cocktail of skincare can lead to a multitude of problems. Mixing brands and products from what’s rating best online is kind of like getting a bunch of different alcohol, mixing them in a cup and then drinking it. Never a good idea!
OTHER BEAUTY TREATMENTS TO CONSIDER
What do you recommend with brows? Anything I should know here?
Please don’t pluck your brows. Please seek out a professional or someone you trust. By all means, do not race out the week before to try some random brow artist. It should be planned out so you know what you’ll get and if you go to them in advance, you’ll be able to get your brows to the optimal state. I also highly recommend growth serums and tinting to perfect your brows. There are so many options out there when it comes to perfecting your brows, so talk to your therapist or expert in your initial consult.
NUTRITION, EXERCISE AND VITAMINS
Can you tell us a bit about how diet affects the skin? Is there anything you think I should cut out in the lead up to the wedding?
We are what we eat. Fresh food is always best, so try and stay away from packaged foods and obviously incorporate good essential fatty acids, as well as a diverse group of colourful foods for vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. As far as food restrictions, the main one would be processed foods and alcohol consumption, because it will kill your good bacteria and it’s really doing you no favours. In saying that, it’s all about balance, and you really have to consider it on an individual basis. Often people will know something specific will trigger them or their skin. Plus, get plenty of sleep. Rest does wonders for the skin, that’s why it’s called beauty sleep!
Does exercise really have benefits for my skin? If so, what?
Stress will flare your skin and cause all types of dramas if there is not adequate vitamins or times to switch off and relax. Exercise is essential for overall well-being and to help reduce stress. It will certainly do wonders for your skin and your body, it’s anti-ageing and also helps detoxify you and move your lymphatic system. I like to think of it as a river, if we’re moving then we’re flowing water, so therefore we’re clean and fresh.
Amazing, thanks for all your help. Any last advice?
Definitely, here’s some general things to keep on your mind:
- I’d recommend keeping a diary to know what’s happening with your skin and book your appointments well in advance, it’ll help you keep on top of things. The more organised you are, the more comfortable you are going to be on the day knowing you did all you could to help you feel as confident as possible.
- Start early, it’ll give you an idea of how fast your skin and body responds to treatment and work and will give you a sense of control so it’s not like you’re thrown on a fast treadmill of trying to get your different elements together.
- Don’t be afraid to get your partner involved too! A nice massage or nail appointment goes a long way to take care of your mental state as well.
Stop or reduce:
- Artificial colours from food, skincare and makeup as these tend to clog pores cause irritation and breakout.
- Stop smoking. Smoking breaks down collagen by depleting you of vitamin C, stains your skin and slows the healing process. Smoking is often the cause of very unsightly blackheads too.
- Consume a maximum of 1-2 coffees per day, and opt for low fat or no sugar if you are looking to keep calories down.
- Avoid excess consumption of junk food, alcohol, sweets and fizzy drinks.
- A balanced prescription cleanser to resolve your skins unique needs.
- Check the dates of your makeup and sunscreen, out of date or old products can damage your skin.
- Regularly wash your pillowcases, sheets and washcloths.
- Gentle non-dehydrating exfoliants or a liquid exfoliant.
- Use serums and eye cream.
- Opt for mineral makeup and/or mineral powder. We love Australian brands such as Melli mineral foundation, which can also be custom blended to get your perfect colour. I also love Ultraceuticals CC mineral makeup.
- Incorporate a protective daily moisturiser with sunscreen – the most antiaging of all your skincare!
- Ensure your sunglasses have UV protection, always wear a hat and cover your décolletage.
- Invest in a makeup eraser cloth, which should last 3-5 years and is an environmentally-friendly choice. Keep it washed after every use with antibacterial soap.
- Sleep on a silk pillowcase, great for reducing pulling, creasing and great for your hair too.
- Use skincare on your decolletage and hands, this is one of the most overlooked areas.
- Try out a lash or brow growth serum, I’m a fan of EyEnvy. Even if you plan on having extensions, your lashes will look longer and stronger to withstand the glue (often drying and problematic for some – test this in advance).
- Add in some hair, skin and nails vitamins to increase strength, I like practitioner ranges as the formulas are often stronger and include biotin and silica. If you’re planning to become pregnant your naturopath can also ensure adequate levels of folate and other essential nutrients.
- Correcting your diet and supplement intake will make your skin clearer and more radiant than you can ever imagine. You know when you see that vibrant healthy person it’s always from the inside out.
A FEW LAST TIPS FROM ONE OF HER BRIDES:
- Start early enough. I think I started about 8 months before my wedding, which meant I had it all sorted well in advance and had the confidence that it would stay so for the big day.
- Engage an expert. If you follow the advice of the best in the business, then you are guaranteed for success.
- Make the investment. Good skincare will come at a cost, but bad skincare is very hard to hide on your big day and can really impact on your confidence. If you are going to spend big bucks on a photographer, you want to make sure you are looking your best.
- Stick to the plan, be persistent. Once you know what works, keep up the routine – it will pay off!