6 Effective Prewedding Beauty Treatments (and How Much They Cost)

Why not splurge on some #selfcare before your wedding? Here's the rundown on the hottest beauty treatments—and their cost.
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Shelley Brown
shelley brown - the knot
Shelley Brown
Senior Fashion & Beauty Editor
  • Shelley writes and edits articles for The Knot Worldwide, with a speciality in fashion, beauty, jewelry and accessories
  • Shelley writes and edits articles for The Knot magazine, as well as styles the magazine’s fashion and cover shoots
  • Prior to The Knot Worldwide, Shelley was a freelance Digital Editor at Conde Nast’s Lucky Magazine and freelanced for FLAUNT Magazine, Los Angeles Magazine, Backstage.com and Paste.com
Updated Aug 09, 2018

Chances are, your wedding day will be one of the most heavily photographed moments of your life. So, why not splurge on some #selfcare to ensure you're camera ready from head-to-toe? We tested the hottest beauty treatments out there to get the scoop on how they work, how to time them and—most importantly—how to factor them into your wedding budget.

Microcurrent Facial

How It Works: Is electricity the key to eternal youth? Microcurrent facialists think so. During this treatment, an aesthetician uses a microcurrent machine to apply a mild pulse of electricity to the face to stimulate circulation and collagen production, while lifting and toning the facial muscles. Think of it as a mini face-lift, without the surgery.

What It Addresses: If lack of sleep or stress (say, from wedding planning) has your skin sagging, this is a noninvasive solution. "A microcurrent facial can help combat a number of issues, like loss of elasticity, wrinkles and puffiness," says Cecilia Wong, a celebrity facialist and the founder of Cecilia Wong Skincare in New York.

How to Time It: You'll see immediate results after one treatment, but it's a cumulative process. "It's basically a workout for your face. The more treatments you get, the more your skin becomes toned and sculpted," Wong says. She recommends brides get a series of six treatments leading up to their wedding.

Average Cost: $300 per treatment

Dermaplaning

How It Works: This cutting-edge technique brings a new meaning to going under the knife. An aesthetician uses a sterile surgical blade, held at a 45-degree angle, to scrape away dead skin cells and fine vellus hair (or peach fuzz) on the face and neck.

What It Addresses: If your skin is dry or dull or just needs a prewedding boost, consider this alternative to regular exfoliation. "Dermaplaning immediately rejuvenates the skin by painlessly removing the outermost layer of dead skin cells," says Oksana Shenker, the lead aesthetician at Julien Farel Restore Salon & Spa in New York. "It's also highly effective at minimizing the appearance of fine lines and acne scars, and it leaves skin smooth and supple."

How to Time It: While there is no downtime after dermaplaning (the treatment tickles more than anything), Shenker recommends scheduling your appointment two to three days before your wedding to make sure your skin won't look irritated or flaky.

Average Cost: $300 for a 60-minute treatment

Laser Teeth Whitening

How It Works: A whitening gel made with hydrogen peroxidebleach is smeared onto your pearly whites. A halogen light is then used to activate the bleach, which penetrates teeth and removes stains. "The whole process takes 45 minutes, and results last one to two years," says Lana Rozenberg, a cosmetic dentist in New York.

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What It Addresses: More effective than strips or gels, laser whitening removes surface stains on enamel, as well as deep stains, which occur as the dentin of the tooth naturally darkens over time.

How to Time It: There is no recovery period with laser teeth whitening. "You can have it done during lunch and go back to work," Rozenberg says. But you should avoid any dark staining food and drink for 24 hours after a treatment, so if you're going to drink coffee or red wine on your wedding day, plan accordingly.

Average Cost: $675 per treatment

Laser Hair Removal

How It Works: After numbing the area with a topical anesthetic, a specialist applies a professional-grade laser device to the skin. Concentrated beams of light target the root of hair beneath the skin's surface. The pigment in the hair follicles absorbs the light, ultimately destroying the follicles and preventing future hair growth.

What It Addresses: Rid yourself of unwanted hair and ingrowns. Another unexpected plus? "Areas with shadows, like the underarms, will appear lighter once hair growth is stunted," says Keiann Roberts, the lead specialist at Spruce & Bond in New York.

How to Time It: Immediately following a treatment, you may experience slight redness (similar to a sunburn), which typically lasts two to three days. Roberts recommends using aloe vera gel or an anti-inflammatory cream for any residual irritation. For optimal results, plan on at least four to six sessions, spaced four to six weeks apart. "For a summer wedding, I would recommend starting your treatments in the fall or winter to make sure you have smooth skin by your wedding day," Roberts says.

Average Cost: $200 to $300 per session. The number of sessionsrequired depends on your hair type and the area treated.

Microblading

How It Works: This more sophisticated take on permanent makeup is a form of tattooing, where hairlike strokes are drawn onto the brow area to resemble the look of your existing brow hairs. First, a microblading artist will draw your desired brow shape onto your brow area and apply numbing cream. Once the brows are numb, a handheld tool is used to create tiny incisions, where pigment is implemented. The result is a series of natural-looking, fine tattoo "hairs" that will last one to three years.

What It Addresses: Microblading can be used to correct patchy or uneven brows. "Many clients without serious brow issues even use it to create fuller brows than they have naturally," says Kendra Bray, the founder of Better Brows in New York.

How to Time It: Timing is especially important here. "Microblading is a process, not a quick fix," Bray says. After your initial appointment, keep your brows totally dry for a full week while scabs form. Once the scabs come off, another couple of weeks are required to let the skin regenerate. At four weeks, you'll need a touch-up to perfect any areas that didn't retain pigment. Bray recommends scheduling your first appointment at least 12 weeks before your wedding to allow enough time for healing.

Average Cost: $500 to $1,600

Lash Extensions

How It Works: Faux mink hairs are bonded to each natural lash with a surgical-grade adhesive. The entire process takes about 90 minutes and lasts from two to three weeks without touch-ups.

What It Addresses: Lash extensions are a longer-lasting, more natural-looking alternative to falsies. "Brides love it because they don't have to worry about mascara or strip lashes on their day," says Mandy Jacobellis, owner of Makeup Mandy salon in Los Angeles.

How to Time It: Try out a set of extensions a couple of weeks before your wedding. Jacobellis also recommends scheduling a touch-up right before your day to make any tweaks to your look.

Average Cost: $200 to $500

Infrared Body Wrap

How It Works: An aesthetician applies essential oils and moisturizing balm from the neck down. You're then wrapped in a plastic cocoon, followed by an infrared blanket, which slowly heats up to around 56 degrees Fahrenheit. "The warming wrap opens the pores, leading to faster absorption of hydrating oils," says Anastasia Cupcea, an aesthetician at Daphne, a New York spa. It's a sweaty process, but the result is smooth, intensely moisturized skin.

What It Addresses: Combat dry, rough or flaky skin. "It's perfect for the bride who just wants an allover glow," Cupcea says.

How to Time It: Only one treatment is required to feel the effects, and there is no recovery time.

Average Cost: $195 for a 60-minute session

Underarm Botox

How It Works: After numbing the area, a physician injects 100 units of Botox into each armpit. "The solution paralyzes the tiny muscles around each sweat gland, which stops the glands from producing perspiration for three to six months," says plastic surgeon Daniel Maman, MD, of 740 Park Plastic Surgery in New York City.

What It Addresses: Armpit injections may sound extreme, but brides suffering from hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) are ideal candidates for this treatment. "You won't have to worry about body odor and sweat stains ruining your gown," Maman says. And, because you're treating a small surface area on the body, injecting your armpits doesn't automatically mean you'll sweat excessively in other places.

How to Time It: Injections take three to five days to take effect. One treatment can last for up to six months.

Average Cost: $1,200 to $2,000 per treatment for both armpits.

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