We're at T minus two months until our wedding day, which means it's crunch time for all the last-minute nuptial details, but at the same time, it's still far away enough that any oomph I add to my pre-wedding skincare routine now will pay off in dividends. The products I'm incorporating into my current regimen are all natural (bonus!)—highly effective but gentle enough to not trigger any adverse reactions. My MO? Hydrated, glowing, radiant, even-toned skin.
You know who knows hydrated, glowing, radiant, even-toned skin? Gwyneth Paltrow—and, by extension, California-based Juice Beauty. The organic beauty brand counts Paltrow as a fan and has previously collaborated with her on a collection of phyto-pigments colour cosmetics. But it's their astonishingly effective natural skincare that piques my interest, the Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel Full Strength ($57 at Holt Renfrew) in particular.
Alpha/beta hydroxy fruit acids provide spa-strength exfoliation while brightening and evening skin tone. The formula (which looks and feels a bit like applesauce purée) can tingle and cause redness, so it's not recommended for ultra-sensitive or rosacea-prone skin. Because it's spa-strength, I follow the "leave on for 10 minutes" rule to the letter by setting my phone timer. The results are worth it though: my skin seems more even, radiant, and supple after just one session. With eight weeks of twice-weekly use, I'm hoping it'll help fade some dark marks left over from old breakouts and a dark discoloured patch on my right cheek.
The other natural skincare products I'm enlisting to fight pigmentation are Korres Wild Rose Brightening Targeted Tone Corrector ($43) and Korres Wild Rose Vitamin C Active Brightening Oil ($54). Both formulas boast antioxidant-rich wild rose oil and potent vitamin C, while the Targeted Tone Corrector also contains pancratium (a sea fern extract that decreases pigmentation) and sand lily extract (an ingredient that purportedly reduces dark spot size and tone). Only time will tell if these products really work. For now though, what I can tell you is that the Brightening Oil comes in an adorable bottle (love the heart!), smells scrumptious, feels luxe, has real rose bits floating in the oil, and leaves my skin feeling really soft. The lotion-like Targeted Tone Corrector absorbs quickly and doesn't feel greasy at all.
In my wedding skincare Q&A, Collective Skincare's Kathryn Sawers recommended regular exfoliation of skin that might be revealed by a wedding gown. It makes sense—who wants ashy elbows or a dry back in their wedding photos? Body exfoliation is something I often forget, but I'm going to be doing one twice a week with Fable Naturals Lemon + Lavender Sugar Scrub ($14). The scrub's texture is just the sort I like: the granules aren't too large or coarse and they're concentrated enough to really exfoliate, plus the oil content is just enough to lightly hydrate without rendering my bathtub a slick mess. The lemon and lavender scent provides a soothing hit of aromatherapy in the shower too—perfect for combating pre-wedding stress.
Finally, I've been trying GliSODin Skin Nutrients (approximately $90/month, available through Collective Skincare) for a little over a month now in preparation for an upcoming blog post. Mine is the Advanced Skin Brightening Formula, which provides brightening benefits and minimizes the damaging effects of sun exposure. Full disclosure: I'd previously tried GliSODin for a month and hadn't noticed much of a visible difference. Even GliSODin's PR admitted that for someone who already has good skin like I do, the aesthetic difference might be indistinguishable and the benefits of taking a nutri-cosmetic supplement are more about long-term health at the cellular level.
But I can tell it's working and I'm so impressed with the results. How, you ask? My reactions to insect bites. Last summer I would get inflamed, loonie-sized welts that wouldn't fade for a week simply from mosquito bites; let's not even talk about black flies. This summer any insect bites I get barely have a chance to itch and swell and they disappear within 1-2 days' time. I'm severely allergic to insect bites usually, and the only thing I can think of that explains my skin's current anti-inflammatory, super-quick healing powers is GliSODin.
Other than adding these five products to my routine, I've just been trying to take care of the basics of overall well-being: going to Bar Method (the endorphins and de-stressing benefits of physical activity do wonders), eating my veggies, drinking water, getting lots of sleep, wearing sunscreen.
Brides-to-be, newlyweds, and happily marrieds: What did you do to get ready for the big day? I'm curious.
P.S. For more wedding-day beauty inspo, check out these previous Bridal Style posts about: