How To Master The French Braid
With two months to go (argh!) before my “Big Day” it’s just dawned on me I’m going to be photographed from every angle – so I’d better look my best. Luckily, I work with the ever-knowledgeable Grazia Beauty Director Liz Hambleton so have picked her beauty brains on what I should be doing. Sadly, it’s almost too late for me to put her advice into action. Hence why I’m sharing her top ten beautifying tips with you now…
1. Get your teeth (professionally) whitened
“The camera flash makes teeth automatically look less white than they are and the soft focus filters of pictures your guests will be uploading to instagram are even worse, so if you’re only going to invest in one professional treatment make it teeth whitening,” says Liz. However, she cautions that you should always get them professionally whitened – and then follow up with a whitening toothpaste at home.
“Once you’ve chosen your dress, think about what part of your body you want to tone up – for example your arms, back or chest area if you’re wearing a plunging neckline,” says Liz. Weights work well for arms and opt for yoga to strengthen your back.
“Go to your usual hairstylist three months before for a trial of your hair colour. And once you’re happy with it book in for the session two weeks before the big day,” advises Liz.
“You’ll really notice the difference to your skin if you manage this,” says Liz. She says you’ll look fresher, younger and be less inclined to have any breakouts before the big day. Any weight loss as a result is just a bonus. PLUS - this how fun your first glass of champagne will be afterwards. *Do you think that's why Kate is whooping in the picture above?!*
“But firstly and most importantly decide where and how your pictures are being taken – inside or outside, posed or casual – and then match your foundation accordingly,” says Liz. And then play around because you want to be comfortable with using it and seeing how it lasts and when it needs to be reapplied.
“Go for a really intensive course of facials two months before focusing on lymphatic drainage, skin tone and radiance,” advises Liz. She recommends Decleor or Clarins (available nationwide) or Shu Umera’s oil-based facials.
If your budget doesn’t stretch to salon facials, Liz says it’s essential to stock up on night skincare – when your skin is regenerating the most. “Opt for a serum like Estee Lauder’s Advanced Night Repair if you suffer from dull skin or Clarins Blue Orchid night oil (£30) if you’ve got dry skin.”
Your guests will want to see that ring, so you need to make sure your nails are up to scratch. “Start by investing in a cuticle nail oil you rub into fingernails and toenails every night,” advises Liz. Her pick? Leighton Denny’s Slick Tips (£11).
And you’ll want a classic shade that shows off your diamonds – and co. “If your dress is white look for a pinkier shade, if it’s ivory go for more of a mauve/beige shade,” says Liz. She recommends Essie’s Ballet Slippers.
The cheapest way to make a difference – body brushes are available from £1 from Boots. And they really work! “If you, like most women, hate those red bumps on the back of your oft-neglected arms, look for a body exfoliator containing glycolic acid and body brush with it morning and night. If you can’t find a body exfoliator with glycolic acid then look for a facial one which will also work. Then slather on a body moisturizer – not an oil.” Liz loves Nivea Soft (£4.49) if you’re on a budget or Crème de la Mer (£105) if you’re splashing out. “Because it really does work.”
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