12 Bridal Beauty Bummers (and How To Fix Them)

Fast fixes for your unexpected—yet totally normal—prewedding and day-of hair, skin and makeup mishaps.
by Heather Hall

You've been growing out your hair, but now you've got split ends

Head to your salon for a “hair dusting"—it's a light trim just to clean up the very ends—but keep the overall length. To prevent further splits, use a strengthening serum before styling.

Try: Reparative Serum for Damaged Ends, $30, Phyto, Beauty.com

Latte-fueled marathon planning sessions have stained your teeth

You can go to your dentist for a professional whitening treatment, or you can try an at-home kit. The DIY products are less costly and, if used correctly, can give results similar to the pro treatments. “The bleach [in at-home kits] can deliver noticeable results within a few days," says Gregg Lituchy, DDS, who works with celebs like Heidi Klum. The trick with DIY whiteners is to go see your dentist for a cleaning first to remove buildup. Also use a toothpaste for sensitive teeth before and after the treatment to minimize pain.

Try: 3D White Whitestrips Professional Effects, $55, Crest, 3DWhite.com

All that sweating you've been doing at bridal boot camp has made your back and chest break out

Hit the showers after working out to wash off sweat, dirt and oil. Use a body wash with salicylic acid to get rid of dead skin and prevent pores from clogging. And don't skip the moisturizer. “Even those with oily skin should hydrate with a lotion," says dermatologist-to-the-stars Amy Wechsler, MD. Use a noncomedogenic daily face moisturizer instead of a body lotion; the formula is lighter-weight and won't clog pores.

Try: Gentle skin cleanser, $8, Cetaphil, Walgreens.com; Healthy Defense daily moisturizer SPF 30, $14, Neutrogena.com

You thought you gave yourself the time, but your hair didn't grow out enough for that updo you wanted

Temporary clip-in extensions allow you to decide the length (and amount) of hair used for your wedding day hairstyle. Ask for help when buying to choose the right color match for your hair and have your stylist put the extensions in place for a completely natural look.

Try: Clip-in extension, $49, Pop Put On Pieces, Beauty.com

Your dance classes have left your feet dry and rough

Treat your feet to a warm-water soak and massage, using an exfoliating foot scrub and a pumice stone to help remove dead skin and smooth your soles. Then, apply lotion and slip on thick cotton socks before bed.

Try: Bare Foot creamy pumice foot scrub, $4, Freeman, Drugstore.com; Exfoliating moisturizer foot ointment, $11, Kerasal, Walgreens.com

You decided to get a prewedding wax, and now your bikini line is covered in little red bumps

Don't try waxing (or any new beauty treatment) for the first time right before the wedding. Book an appointment two months prior to see how your skin will react. Schedule your last prewedding wax a few days before the main event (keeping in mind that hair should be at least a quarter inch long). Prevent ingrown hairs by using a product containing glycolic acid and exfoliating daily. If you already have an irritation, use a gentle cleanser to prevent infection and apply a hydrocortisone cream to the affected area.

Try: Bikini Bump Blaster, $10, CompletelyBare.com

Spotty sunscreen application at your beach bachelorette has left you with sunburned patches

Debra Jaliman, MD, author of Skin Rules: Trade Secrets From a Top New York Dermatologist, suggests applying a cold skim milk compress—the lactic acid in the milk will soothe the burn. Then, apply a green-tinted moisturizer (the color contrast will help reduce the appearance of redness) to hydrate and prevent your skin from peeling.

Try: Skin Concern Sensitivity & Redness: Redness Correcting Moisturizer, $17, Physicians Formula, Walmart.com

Late-night pinning has made your eyes red and puffy

“Eye creams containing caffeine will help reduce puffiness around and under your eyes," says Megan Garmers, founder and director of MG Hair and Makeup. Start by reducing any redness with eyedrops. Then, cover up the dark under-eye circles by applying a color-correcting eye cream followed by concealer. Widen and brighten your eyes with a highlighter stick. Apply around the corner of your eyes and underneath your lash line. Be sure to blend.

Try: Redness Reliever eyedrops, $6, Visine, Soap.com; Fast Response eye cream, $31, MACCosmetics.com; Touche Éclat Radiant Touch highlighter, $40, YSLBeautyUS.com

It's bridal shower time, but your face looks washed out

Layer a cream or liquid bronzer underneath a powder bronzer to prevent your face from looking flat or otherwise ashen. Apply bronzer along your hairline, above your temples, over your cheekbones and along your jawline; then brush over your nose, neck and ears for a subtle-yet-sexy glow.

Try: Body Illuminator, $45, bronzing powder brush, $52, NarsCosmetics; bronzing powder, $25, MACCosmetics.com

It happened: a zit on your wedding day

You're not the first this has happened to, and you won't be the last. Apply an over-the-counter product with benzoyl peroxide or cortisone to kill bacteria and reduce redness. Use concealer directly on the blemish; then gently blend around—but not on—it. If you have time, your dermatologist can give you a cortisone injection to quickly soothe it.

Try: SkinClearing blemish concealer, $9, Neutrogena, CVS.com

A heat wave has you worried about day-of sweat stains

Choosing a clinical-strength antiperspirant will actually plug your sweat glands so they won't produce. Apply it at night so that it soaks in while you sleep and will last longer. And don't forget to include it in your day-of bag in case you want to reapply.

Try: Clinical Strength solid antiperspirant, $9, Secret, Soap.com

During a dress change for the reception, some of your makeup rubbed off in the switch

Dab (don't rub) the spot with a stain remover. Cover any remaining stain with baby powder. If you're wearing a dress that has to go on over your head, cover your face with a tissue or a lightweight scarf to create a barrier first. Post-switch, touch up your makeup; then apply powder to set.

Try: Stain remover pen, $7 for 3-pack, Tide To Go, Target.com; blended face powder and blush, $23, Clinique.com

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