Tuesday, 7 May 2013

My Wedding Skincare Nightmare...

Every bride wants to be beautiful. And who can blame them? It's supposed to be the best day of your life, the day you get to marry the one person you love the most in the world in front of all your friends and family. I think there is actually quite a bit of pressure on women to look their best on their wedding day and this is bound to cause some stress and emotional outbursts in the run up to the big day.

One of my biggest concerns and insecurities was my skin. I am prone to breakouts which come and go but for the 3 months in the lead up to the wedding it was awful. Just awful. My skin hated me. I don't know if this was due to stress or hormones or bad skincare treatments but I just couldn't figure out what to do about it.

I think stress had a lot to do with it, stress gives you spots and then you get more stressed because of the spots as Vanessa Hudgeons used to say on the Neutrogena adverts or something along those lines any way.
I have very sensitive skin and now that I look back in retrospect, the more products I tried, the worse it got. I had always seen Clinique counters in big department stores with their white work tops, green bottles and professional looking women in white coats. All very clinical and I guess that has a lot to do with the name.

I did some research online and their 3 step skin care routine came highly recommended and I was particularly intrigued by the Anti-Blemish Solutions range. Clinique does not come cheap but I thought it might be worth splashing out a little on skin care if it would take away any skin insecurities on the wedding day. I visited a Clinique counter in a local Debenhams store and had a look at both the Anti-Blemish Foam Wash and the Anti-Blemish Clarifying Lotion. As it was buy two items and get a tin full of make-up goodies free I was rather easily persuaded!

I did however, have some doubts as I had read that they could be a little drying and I did already have quite dry skin. The sales assistant asked me whether it was a tight dry or a flaky dry and when I answered that it was more of a flaky dry she assured me that all I needed to do was exfoliate more and the Anti-Blemish range would be fine.

I have always been a little lazy with skin care, mainly relying on face wipes to do all the dirty work (or clean work?) but I was determined to keep up the new skincare routine. So much so that the word Clinique became a verb in my house, every morning I would announce that I was 'going to Clinique' and would repeat the process before bed.

I had read that your skin may purge to begin with so it may get a little worse before it gets better and boy did it get worse! They certainly didn't want to go down without a fight. I persevered for weeks! But unfortunately this was only 2 months or so before the wedding and it got to the point where it just wasn't getting any better and I just couldn't risk using the products all the way up until the wedding just in case it didn't ever get better. And yes they were very drying so I had to use a lot of Clinique moisturiser to counteract the effects.

My skin never really did recover in time for the wedding, it was still quite bad and it was upsetting. There are some photos I just can't look at happily because its all I can see. My sister and I did a pretty good job of covering it up but my skin didn't look perfect. It is probably silly to think like that, I had a perfect day and my skin really didn't affect it and luckily my sister's boyfriend is a genius with Photoshop and has even airbrushed a few pics for me!

It may have been better for me to see a dermatologist early on but I assumed that would cost money and with bridesmaid dresses to buy and a DJ to hire our wedding budget was already pretty tight. I still have the Clinique products sitting in my bathroom but I am hesitant to try them again. They smell very strong, almost medicinal, and perhaps they are just too strong for my sensitive skin.

My advice, think about skincare a good 6 months before the wedding and don't try new products with only a few weeks to go, even if you are as desperate as I was. But mainly, don't let the pressure of looking your best dominate your wedding, you will still feel your best and your happiest on the day and you get to marry the person you love more than anything, and surely that's the most important thing?


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