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Expert Advice

When to Get Your Last Haircut Before Your Wedding

And other beauty must-do's the month before the big day.

By Caroline Cunningham
The ExpertMonth OfWeek OfDay Of


HAIR
Luigi Parasmo
Stylist/Co-Owner, Luigi Parasmo Salon and Spa
Schedule a trial run with your wedding-day hair-stylist. Bring your veil and any hairpieces to help visualize the final look. Your last haircut should be two months before your wedding. Color and highlight your hair—the color will soften and fade lightly after a couple of shampoos. If you’re wearing your hair up, avoid cutting or trimming it; even half an inch can make a difference in updo manageability. Head to a salon for a hair glaze and blowout the night before. The glaze will help keep hair shiny and the blowout can be worn at the rehearsal dinner. Do not wash your hair the morning of your wedding. Freshly washed strands can be slippery, which means you’ll need more bobby pins and hairspray to maintain your look.


BODY
Carlene Thomas
Author, The Wedding Wellness Workbook
It’s crunch time. Opt for whole grains, which are packed with fiber and B vitamins. Add spinach to sandwiches and smoothies, use olive oil as salad dressing, and swap out mayo for avocado. Reach for beauty foods such as berries, salmon, and nuts for other meals and snacks. Make healthy options automatic during a hectic time by preparing or purchasing foods the weekend before. Hydrate with dandelion and green teas, which reduce bloating and rev your metabolism. Remember to eat no matter how busy (or nervous) you get. Opt for a protein-packed breakfast (veggie omelette with salmon, fruit-and-nut yogurt parfait) to avoid bloating and maintain energy. Ask someone in the bridal party to make sure you have food in your dressing room.


SKIN
Dr. Sherry Maragh
Founder, Northern Virginia Dermatology, Vein & Surgery Center
This is the deadline for considering wrinkle fillers or Botox. Avoid aggressive skin treatments like chemical peels and lasers from now until after the wedding; a hydrafacial by a licensed technician will lift dead cells, clean pores, and leave skin looking radiant. Schedule facial waxing and threading this week so any redness has a few days to resolve. Decrease the use of any products containing retinol or glycolic acid; these can cause redness or increase sun sensitivity on the wedding day. Get plenty of rest the night before, and stay hydrated. Resist the temptation to squeeze any “stress” pimples; instead, apply an acne spot treatment and cover with makeup. Apply primer before makeup to control natural oils and prevent shine, and bring along rice-paper blotters for between photos.

Wedding Hair and Beauty

13 Times We Had Major Wedding Hair Envy

These Washington brides and stylists know the meaning of “on fleek.”

By Caroline Cunningham

One cannot fully appreciate the importance of wedding hair until the big day arrives, when rather than focusing on how happy you are and how good that wedding cake tastes, you’re spitting out the stray piece of hair that keeps sticking to your lipgloss or trying to get your maid of honor to assure you that the weird lump in your updo won’t show up in the photos.

Don’t be that bride—be these brides, who totally nailed it when it comes to wedding day hair success. From loose, flowing waves to intricate, knotted updos, let these hair masterpieces inspire you.

1. Side-swept Curls

Photograph by Vicki Grafton Photography

This bride’s beautiful locks were arranged by Kenneatria Sutton into thick curls and pinned to the side of her head to create an elegant side ponytail.

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Wedding Hair and Beauty

6 Easy DIY Floral Crown Hairstyles

Plus—how to do your makeup if you're wearing a floral crown.

By Caroline Cunningham

From a tiny bud tucked behind the ear to a full floral wreath, not all flower headpieces are created equal. With the help of Holly Heider Chapple of Holly Heider Chapple Flowers and Remona Soleimani of Bridal Hair by Remona, we created six ways to nail the bridal trend of the season.

BOLD

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: Start with bright, larger blossoms, such as peonies, Japanese ranunculuses, cabbage roses, or dahlias. Garden roses are also gorgeous in this wreath, but they’ll cost four or five times more per stem than a standard rose. Rely on ivy for your green, and pair this crown with hair that’s half-pulled back so your face is shown in full. This is a fun and fanciful opportunity to allow the wreath to be the focal point of your wedding ensemble; it's perfect with a simple sheath gown.

BRAIDED

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: For more flexibility in the arrangement, wind a thin wire around individual or small clusters of blossoms, leaving a couple of inches of wire at the end to be woven into your hair. Petite flowers, no larger than a quarter, work best—try white or pink spray roses or mini orchids. Once you have seven or nine clusters, slip them through a waterfall braid, which leaves the weight of the hair hanging loose, or a crown braid, a 360-degree look that weaves all the hair into a single braid to wrap around the head.

TROPICAL

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: Waxy, dark greens—such as forest green Italian ruscus or slick gardenia leaves—are the star of this crown. Try a bit of podocarpus or Australia’s zigzag wattle to add some spiky geometry to the mix. Many blooms from Southern Hemisphere flowers are too large to include in their entirety, but bits and pieces of flowers such as king protea make unique accents. This thicker, fuller crown works well with simple, understated hair, such as soft, flowing beach waves that can play against the leaves’ dark shades.

WHIMSICAL

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: Use bark wire—a thin, flexible strand that’s wrapped in rustic, dried materials and can be purchased on a roll—as your base. Wrap it with olive branch for a lovely shade of pale green, and add some hanging amaranthus or tiny, white Japanese pieris japonica buds to one side for a trailing, asymmetric feel. In colder months, add berries or feathers for more texture, and rest the wreath on a wispy fishtail braid. Tease the hair for volume and gently tug on each side down the length of the braid to loosen it for a natural, organic appearance.

HALO

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: Headpiece designers have taken to the flower-crown trend, relying on freshwater pearls, crystals, ribbons, and feathers to simulate the look. If wilting is a worry or you’re envisioning a more formal feel, these crowns, such as BHLDN’s Pearly Dreams Halo, offer a less fragile solution. Try it with a low chignon for an elegant look that showcases the crown, or keep with the casual, organic trend of flower crowns and allow it to blend in naturally by wearing your hair down.

DELICATE

Illustration by Cristina Alonso.

Get the Look: With wisps of baby’s breath, wax flowers, spray roses, or limonium, this dainty crown works with a more casual aesthetic. Pair it with seeded eucalyptus for your greenery, and weave in jasmine vine or lavender clematis vine for a bit of color—but note that these vine varieties aren’t as long-lasting as others, such as ivy. Lay this crown a few inches from the forehead atop a soft updo, allowing a few pieces of hair to float around your face for an easy, loose look that works perfectly in a garden or forest setting.

MAKEUP TIPS

There are makeup dos and don’ts for every trend, and flower crowns are no exception. We’ve teamed up with makeup artist Abigail de Casanova to help you find a palette that will work with your blossoms rather than compete with them.

Stay away from smoky eyes. For flower crowns you’ll want to go with a softer, more natural look. Instead try: a very thin line of Make Up For Ever Aqua Creamliner in black, with NARS The Multiple in Malibu or Portofino dabbed lightly on the lid. Finish with a light application of Diorshow mascara.

Avoid bright-red lips. Flowers tend to give a bride a softer overall aesthetic, so if you want to go for the dramatic and modern, a flower crown may not be your best bet. Instead try: Yves Saint Laurent’s Rouge Pur Couture Vernis à Lèvres Glossy Stain to offer a burgundy or rosy pop of color that highlights the shades present in the crown.

Don’t load up on harsh, heavy makeup. Flower crowns work best with understated palettes. Try Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover foundation and Inglot AMC Cream Blush. Start simple, and add more if needed.

Wedding News

Butter London Debuts New Bridal Nail Polish Collection

The four-piece set is inspired by the four wedding “somethings.”

By Jordan Muto

The popular nail polish maker Butter London is getting into the bridal game with the launch of its new Sweet Somethings collection. We spotted the new offerings during New York’s International Bridal Week at the Monique Lhuillier show, where the models wore Doily, the “something old” of the collection, which resembles light-pink patterned lace and can also be worn as an overcoat for the other polishes in the collection. Brides in need of a “something blue” can try Petticoat, a shimmery periwinkle-blue, for a pedicure. For a more understated, natural look, there’s Pink Ribbon, a sheer light pink, or Alabaster Gaze, a milky, shiny white. Tip: For long-lasting wear, we like Butter’s Nail Foundation Flawless Base Coat and Hardwear P.D. Quick Top Coat for a shiny finish. The Sweet Somethings Set is available for $35 online.

Celebrity Weddings

Bridal DIY: Get Kaley Cuoco’s Wedding Makeup (Video)

A behind-the-scenes look at the celebrity bride’s affordable beauty look.

By Irina Grechko

Many celebrities like to guard the specifics of their big day; details are typically hush-hush, and photos are scarce. Which is why we especially dig Kaley Cuoco’s very welcome overshare. The Big Bang Theory star tied the knot with tennis pro Ryan Sweeting on New Year’s Eve, and has since released photos of her pink Vera Wang gown, the insane upside-down chandelier wedding cake, and the whimsical groom’s cake.

But our favorite is this video from Cuoco’s makeup artist Jamie Greenberg. Not only does the cute vid offer a behind-the-scenes look at Cuoco’s wedding preparation, but it also details the exact products she used, which—surprisingly—are totally affordable. Watch the video below for the breakdown of the look.

Wedding Hair and Beauty

Trend to Try: Blue Nails

Get your “something blue” with these six cool shades.

By Irina Grechko

Whether it’s the belief in the age-old “something blue” superstition or the MObama effect (remember the flurry of media attention surrounding the First Lady’s blue-gray nails at the Democratic National Convention?), blue nail polish is having a huge moment with brides this season. From electric cobalt, perfect for a bold bride, to subtle sky for a more traditional one, nail polish companies have been putting out hues with a serious case of the blues. Get the look with one of the picks below.

Get a case of the blues here

Wedding Hair and Beauty

Beauty Tutorial: How to Do Your Own Wedding Makeup (Video)

Local vlogger Claire Ashley demonstrates how to DIY the naturally flawless look.

By Irina Grechko


When it comes to bridal makeup, you don’t need to shell out big bucks for a professional to achieve a natural look that will stand out in photographs. In fact, doing your own makeup saves you money and avoids the unfortunate incident of a salon artist turning you into someone unrecognizable (you know you’ve heard that horror story before).

With this in mind, we caught up with DC-based self-taught beauty guru Claire Ashley. With more than 80,000 subscribers and more than 13 million views, the YouTuber and beauty blogger knows a thing or two about creating a special-occasion look that’s guaranteed to be a bride- and crowd-pleaser. Watch Ashley create a fuss-free, step-by-step wedding-day look, and get tips for making it stay through the last dance.

Get the look here

Bridal Shower

Bridal Parties: Beauty Edition

From blowouts to spa treatments, five packages for bridal shower and bachelorette fun.

By Irina Grechko
Photograph courtesy of Shutterstock.

Skip the typical night of drinking and dancing and spend your bachelorette party or bridal shower getting pampered with your girls. Whether your maid of honor is planning a sweet surprise or you’re taking the reins, a number of local salons and spas offer all-inclusive, hangover-free bridal packages. Click through the slideshow for five of our favorite beauty services.

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Grooms

Grooming the Groom: Skin-Care Tips for Men

Your wedding day isn’t the time for scruff. Five essential products for his skin.

By Douglas Bair
Image via Shutterstock.

Skip the 5 o’clock shadow and the itchy-scratchy kisses and keep your face hair-free on your wedding day. Trust us, you’ll look better in the pictures without the scruff—and keep your mother-in-law happy, too.

Caution: a quick scrub and a shave minutes before hopping into the limo to the church will not cut it. Instead, incorporate these five products into your daily facial regimen a few weeks before the big day so your skin gets used to the process. We wouldn’t send you to the altar looking anything less than your very best (clean-shaven) self.

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Preferred Wedding Vendors

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