4 Beauty Treatments to Avoid Before Your Wedding

A bride wearing a strapless wedding dress.

When it comes to looking good on your wedding day, most brides are willing to do whatever it takes for that “bridal glow.” Pre-wedding beauty treatments run the gamut from a fresh mani pedi to CoolSculpting your body to lose those last few pounds, and frankly… I say go for it! After all, this is your special day; you should do anything you can to make sure you feel as confident and beautiful as possible.

THAT SAID, there are some beauty treatments that are simply too extreme to do before your wedding – or more specifically, right before your wedding. Here are a few treatments you should avoid in the days (or weeks) before walking down the aisle.

1. Professional Teeth Whitening

A woman getting her teeth professionally whitened.

Tooth whitening is something many people do every day. For example, Americans spend over a billion dollars on teeth whitening products each year, from wear-at-home whitening strips to LED-activated whitening gels. However, the most effective way to get a brighter, whiter smile is to visit your dentist for a professional treatment—but if I were you, I’d avoid making that visit too close to the big day.

I know what you’re thinking. If I get my teeth whitened right before the wedding, they’ll look their brightest for my wedding photos! Doing it too early gives my teeth more time to get stained again! I get it, but here’s the problem: after a professional tooth whitening, your teeth are often SUPER sensitive!

If you don’t give your chompers time to recover, every bite of your dinner or sip of champagne is going to cause you pain (and grimacing through your reception is NOT the key to great photos). Instead, try to make your appointment at least a few weeks in advance.

2. Chemical Peels

Many brides want to have that youthful fresh-faced look on their wedding day, which is why skincare is a major part of pre-wedding beauty prep. But for some brides, a good cleanser and some night cream aren’t enough to achieve their desired look. They want to reduce fine lines, minimize facial scars, or erase age spots—and that desire for better-looking skin can make them consider a chemical peel.

Chemical peels certainly can do all the things mentioned above. The treatment causes the topmost layer of skin to peel off, revealing a new, more youthful layer of skin beneath. However, there’s one major problem with this procedure, and it’s right in the name: PEEL. Your skin will literally peel right off your face, and anyone who’s ever had a bad sunburn can tell you that’s not a pretty look.

Of course, this doesn’t mean you should avoid chemical peels altogether. If you really, really, want to get that youthful glow, just make sure you schedule your peel far enough in advance that all the peeling has stopped by your wedding (two weeks or more should do the trick).

3. Tanning Beds

A woman getting a spray tan before her wedding.

The honeymoon may come after the wedding, but that doesn’t stop many a bride from aiming for a tropical glow before she even boards the plane. Tanning is a popular way to give your skin an attractive, healthy look, so it’s no surprise that so many brides hit the tanning bed before their weddings. However, this practice is actually a little counterintuitive.

See, the UV rays in a tanning bed actually damage (or even kill) skin cells below your epidermis, or topmost layer of skin. This can result in your skin looking flat and dull, which can take away from that healthy glow you were looking for! If you really want to look beautifully sun-kissed for your wedding, consider ditching the tanning bed and opting for a spray tan instead.

4. First-Time Botox

Botox is a popular beauty treatment that can help eliminate wrinkles around the forehead, eyes, and mouth. The procedure works by injecting the toxin botulinum into the muscles, which paralyzes the muscle and causes wrinkles to relax. Many brides seek this treatment to help them appear more youthful on their wedding day, but if you’re not already familiar with the process, you might want to tread lightly.

Firstly, Botox takes around three to seven days to show its full effects, and there is always a risk of the Botox causing other places in the face (for example, the eyelid) to droop. You don’t want to wake up on your wedding day to discover you have droopy eyes!

Secondly, if you’ve never had Botox before, you don’t necessarily know whether or not you’ll like the results of the procedure. If you decide you don’t like your Botox-ed face, well…the good news is the effects will wear off in three to five months. Of course, three to five months is a long time to wait when your wedding is days or weeks away! The best thing to do is schedule your first Botox appointment well in advance of the big day or skip it altogether.

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