Expert Men's Grooming Tips to Ensure You're Wedding Ready

From at-home TLC to professional treatments, our guide explains all.
Man wiping face with towel, men's grooming tips for wedding
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Jenn Barthole
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Jenn Barthole
The Knot Fashion & Beauty Contributor
  • Based in New York City, Jenn Barthole is a Freelance Editor for The Knot, where she contributes fashion and beauty content.
  • Jenn also contributes wellness, interiors, celebrity, fashion, beauty, and travel content to notable publications including ELLE, Refinery 29, Domino, TripAdvisor, EBONY, Cosmopolitan and PopSugar.
  • She graduated with a major in Communications and a minor in Spanish, from Loyola University in Balt...
Updated Jan 05, 2024

Just like the bride, the groom needs to look and feel their absolute best on their wedding day. Therefore, men's grooming for weddings is essential. Pre-wedding grooming includes shaving, hair care, dental work, skin care, and improving overall hygiene. Most of these categories get overlooked but incorporating them into your daily routine will make a major difference during the lead-up to the big day. Not only will it boost your confidence, but you'll also look just as radiant as the bride in your photos.

With the help of Ian Michael Crumm, Celebrity Esthetician and Co-host of BeautyCurious Podcast, we've compiled a list of expert-approved tips for soon-to-be grooms. Our list covers customizable options to suit individual needs, budgets, and a timeline for each step. Ready for your groom glow-up? Keep reading for our pre-wedding grooming guide.

In this article:

Take Care of Your Skin

Your face will be front and center on your wedding day so use the following tips to ensure it's clear and picture-perfect. First, start by solidifying a simple yet effective daily skincare routine that will lead to a healthier-looking complexion. Start by using a cleanser morning and night, full of powerhouse ingredients, that suits your skin type (dry, oily, or combination) and lifestyle. A few times a week, follow it up with a gentle exfoliating scrub or chemical wipe or remove dead skin cells and impurities. Finish up by applying a nourishing moisturizer and sunscreen to your face and neck.

It's also important to incorporate products that address specific skin concerns. If you are acne-prone use a spot treatment gel with at least 2% salicylic acid to zap blemishes. If you have psoriasis, eczema, or dermatitis, "consult your dermatologist or an esthetician to build a skincare plan with a timeline that is customized to your needs" says Crumm. They may suggest specialized serums, creams, or prescription-strength products "which you should test well in advance of your wedding day in case you experience a reaction," he says. This combination of steps will make your skin glow, just in time for your nuptials.

Time to do it

Six to three months before the wedding.

Average cost

$30-$100

Invest in Treatments

Once you have your skincare routine in place, opt for some extra aesthetic treatments to enhance your complexion even more. Consider "getting a professional facial to cleanse and rejuvenate the skin 2-3 weeks before the wedding" instructs Crumm. It can help with deep cleansing, hydration, removing blackheads, unclogging pores, and reviving dull skin. If you have scarring, discoloration, or uneven skin texture, your aesthetician or dermatologist "might suggest more intense skin treatments like micro-needling, a chemical peel, or laser treatment to transform the skin before the big day" Crumm says.

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To address moderate to severe wrinkles and prevent fine lines, like crow's feet, wrinkles between the brows, and forehead creases, consider Botox® Cosmetic injections. The non-invasive treatment is a great way to refresh your visage and look more youthful on your wedding day. Before scheduling, Be sure to check in with a dermatologist or plastic surgeon first for their recommendations. Whichever cosmetic treatment you decide on, schedule it well in advance of your ceremony in case you have a reaction or want to schedule more sessions for maximum results.

Time to do it

Six to three months before the wedding for advanced treatments. Four weeks before for Botox® Cosmetic touchup and facial.

Average cost

$100-$1,200

Don't Forget Body Hair

"Body hair grooming depends on personal preference, but for a wedding, men may consider trimming or shaving excess body hair for a polished and clean look" states Crumm. If you rock facial hair, ensure that it's neatly trimmed and shaped. Aim for a clean and intentional look that brings out your best features. If shaving yourself, invest in quality blades and use a pre-shave oil or cream to avoid razor burn. If you're prone to ingrown hairs, schedule a professional shave with a hot towel and straight razor the day before the wedding.

In addition to shaving, tidy up any stray eyebrow, nose, and ear hairs using tweezers or a facial trimmer. However, avoid overplucking brows for a more natural look. When it comes to the rest of your body, manscaping is crucial for comfort, hygiene, and overall presentation. Use an electric razor with adjustable guards to remove excess chest, back, arm, and hand hair. For a more permanent solution, consult a dermatologist or licensed professional for laser hair removal treatments. Overall, focus on areas that may be visible in engagement photos or on your actual wedding day.

Time to do it

A few days before the wedding. Three months ahead for laser treatment.

Average cost

$10-$600

Customize Your Haircut

When it comes to selecting a men's wedding hairstyle, go with a look that "best suits your face shape and complements your personal style" says Crumm. Start by finding some inspiration by gathering reference images that resemble you and have the same hair type. Discuss your desired look with your partner and barber to gather their input as well. If you don't want to experiment Crumm suggests: "Think back on all the haircuts or styles you've had before and go with the look that you felt most confident in". Either way, finding the right style may take some time, so plan accordingly.

As you work on finding the right cut, take the opportunity to test out hair products as well lie pomade, beard balm, hair cream, and more. For example, a winter wedding may require extra hairspray, while a summer ceremony may call for humidity-proof gel.

Time to do it

One to two weeks for the final cut before the wedding. Three months ahead for testing out a new look.

Average cost

$30-$100

Upgrade Your Smile

Your smile will be one of the first things people notice during your wedding so take the proper steps to ensure that your pearly whites are shining. For starters, don't neglect your daily oral hygiene, which includes flossing, brushing twice a day, and using mouthwash regularly. Next, visit the dentist within the month of your celebration for a deep cleaning to remove any plaque or bacteria buildup. While you're there, ask them about cosmetic treatments to repair chipped, cracked, discolored, or stained teeth. Also, "Consider professional teeth whitening or at-home treatments for a brighter smile in photos," says Crumm. Lastly, don't forget to keep your lips hydrated with a nourishing balm. Stick to this plan and before you know it, you'll have the ultimate, photo-ready smile.

Time to do it

2 months before your wedding.

Average cost

$20-$3,000

Final Touches

Ahead of your big day, there are some last-minute actions you can take that will have a surprising impact on your overall confidence. First, "Treat yourself to a manicure and pedicure to ensure clean and well-groomed nails." Crumm states. In addition, "Choose a subtle and long-lasting cologne that complements your natural scent. Apply it sparingly to pulse points, such as the wrists and neck so you won't overwhelm others with your fragrance". During the week, prepare a small wedding day kit with your grooming essentials for last-minute touches. Include "a hand lotion to keep cuticles and nails looking extra healthy" Crumm instructs. Also, pack your cologne, mints, facial moisturizer, lip balm, hair products, and a toothbrush.

Time to do it

One week before the wedding.

Average cost

$10

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