Let’s face it, we all love a quick fix. It’s hard to be consistent for months at a time! Although it’s definitely not ideal to address your skin issues mere weeks before a special event, like a wedding or a formal – even a holiday where dips in the pool and beach swims take priority over makeup application – it’s achievable to make some improvements to your skin’s look and texture at the last minute.
I have 5 simple things you can start doing today that even with only two weeks headway can make a difference to the overall look and feel of your skin.
First, some things you DO NOT want to do…
1. Don’t detox!
Quitting sugar, starting a juice cleanse, or any other drastic change to your diet is not going to help you at this point. While it could have been helpful a few months back, right now it will have the opposite effect for your big day. Typically the first days or weeks of any kind of internal cleanse will produce a break out. This is your body ridding itself of toxins, which is great, but all of the nasties will come to the surface of your skin and make it look worse before it gets better. There’s no time for that right now!
2. Don’t get new skincare products!
Similarly to point 1, a new skincare regime usually needs to go through a phase of adjustment and therefore can break you out or create other kinds of initial surface issues. You want to just keep doing what you have been doing for now.
3. Don’t get a facial!
If you have two weeks or less leading up to your event, please don’t get a facial, especially if it’s a type of facial you have never previously gotten. If you don’t know beyond a shadow of a doubt how your skin will react, DON’T DO IT!
4. Don’t wax anything!
Especially if you have never waxed your brows or any other facial area before, please don’t wax! The chemicals and after-wax creams can cause break outs and rashes that are very hard to get rid of. I would highly recommend instead getting chemical-free threading done, and forego the soothing creams and lotions afterwards. I only allow my threader to apply rose water or plain old cold water after my threading. Anything else – even the most gentle of creams – tend to cause breakouts after hair removal for me, since the pores are so open.
Now to the things you CAN do to help your skin at the last minute…
1. Drink lemon in the morning
First up every morning, get your digestion off to a kickstart by drinking some lemon juice in hot water. I used to squeeze an entire half a lemon in hot water, which I found really hard to take many a morn. Now I have a great trick – I squeeze out a few lemons and grate some fresh ginger. I fill ice cube trays with these two ingredients, then sprinkle a little Cayenne Pepper on top and freeze the lot. Each morning I pop out one cube into a mug and pour over boiled water. Done.
2. Add greens to your diet like crazy
Instead of making drastic changes to your diet by cutting things out, think about what you can ADD to your diet to help your skin. Hands-down the best thing you can do is add green things to your diet in every opportunity. Of course leafy greens are the best. I try to add salad to every meal. For breakfast, this can be avocado, baby spinach and tomato on toast. Salad with lunch and dinner is easy.
To really up the ante, the fastest, easiest way to increase your daily intake of greens is to drink green smoothies. I have found some amazing green smoothie recipes and I recently purchased an awesome new blender that is really making my smoothies so perfectly smooth and easy to consume. They taste better, too!
I have so little time in the morning, I bag up my full week of green smoothie ingredients into a freezer bags (minus the liquid components) and whip them out each morning. Sometimes I can’t stomach a green smoothie for breakfast, so I will make one for my morning snack, drink half, and save the other half for my afternoon snack.
3. Exfoliate like a mofo!
Please choose a gentle exfoliant and make it part of your routine once or twice a week. This will remove dead skin cells and start creating a much more smooth skin surface that will prepare your skin really nicely for makeup application that will last longer on your big day. It also helps your skin to get rid of impurities with all of those dead skin cells out of the way, not obstructing their path to the outside world/down the drain where they belong!
An exfoliant I love is The Body Shop Vitamin C Microdermabrasion. It makes my skin appear beautifully radiant in minutes and it’s nice and gentle with very fine granules that don’t irritate the skin. And it’s cheap!
4. Change your sheets and towels
We spend around a third of our life sleeping, and if we have unclean pillowcases and sheets, we’re inviting bacteria into our skin each and every night. Changing your sheets once a week is a brilliant general life habit, but in the lead up to your special event, try changing your sheets – or at least your pillowcase – twice a week at least.
Similarly with your towels – try using a new one every day in the lead up to your event, just to minimise any transferral of bacteria to your skin. If you wash your face in your basin morning or night without showering, you could keep a stack of hand towels or flannels by your sink and use a new one each time you need to dry off your face after cleansing. Remember, this isn’t forever, it’s just for now – so while the washing will pile up for a little while, it’s going to be worth it to prevent break outs due to bacteria on towels and sheets.
5. Moisturise like nobody’s business!
If you do nothing else, please do this one! It’s so important for every single skin type to moisturise for healthy skin that looks radiant with or without makeup, but particularly if you want a great finish and long-lasting makeup. One of the biggest misconceptions is that moisturising makes oily skin more oily. I had to learn this one the hard way with my own combination/oily skin. Not moisturising actually makes your skin overproduce oil to compensate, so you actually create the opposite effect by dehydrating your skin.
I add Frankincense oil to my moisturiser, which is great for anti-aging and overall skin health, and Lavender oil is extremely healing with which I have had overnight success in clearing up blemishes. I only use therapeutic-grade oils from Young Living, as these are the most pure available, therefore the most safe and effective.
For extra credit, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water too. This makes such a huge difference to your overall appearance. Your inner hydration – or lack thereof – can be clearly noticed in your skin. So drink up, lovelies!