Getting married in front of 20 or 200 guests can be scary for both you and your bridesmaids. But is cosmetic enhancement worth it, especially if you or your bridesmaids have never been nipped, tucked or injected before? And if it’s not your thing, what can be done, instead?
“It’s interesting because bridesmaids used to get fuzzy slippers, and now brides are gifting lip enhancement or line correction instead,” says Zena Dixon, founder of Red Carpet Bridal Beauty, an on-site wedding beauty service. “I’ve had brides contact me and ask my opinion, but since we only provide makeup solutions, all I can say is that makeup will never do what Botox can do, but they should tread carefully – especially if they’re asking friends to get some work done, too.”
Toronto’s Dr. Phillip Solomon, MD, FRCSC, also deals with concerned brides and bridesmaids anxious to perk up. “Weddings tend to have an emphasis on beauty, and brides and bridesmaids looking as beautiful as possible,” explains Dr. Solomon, who treated a bride with Botox and Restylane on an episode of the reality show Rich Bride, Poor Bride. “There’s a real desire to look good for the photos, which will capture one’s looks for life.” So which should you do: inject or apply? Read on to decide.
INJECT Dr. Solomon says most brides tend to gift wedding parties with non-surgical skin treatments such as fillers or laser surgery, and look into more intensive treatments – such as rhinoplasty or liposuction – for themselves. “Injectibles, such as Botox, vary in cost depending on the doses but can cost up to $600 per syringe,” he says, adding large parties are usually discounted. Rhinoplasty starts from $5,600 and submental – face and neck – liposuction costs $1,500 and up./
And, in addition to cost, there’s also the timing factor – no one wants to see a bridesmaid bruised from a last-minute filler injection. If you and your wedding party are due for non-surgical filling, it’s best to be treated at least three weeks prior. “We give the same treatment considerations to a bride and her bridal party, except when it comes to major surgery such as submental liposuction or a chin implants – for those procedures, we recommend months of healing before the wedding,” says Dr. Solomon.
Dr. Solomon consults with all patients and adds most who end up in his office for cosmetic enhancements are open to the idea, as opposed to feeling pressured. “They’re often free spirits and quite easygoing,” he says.
Apply Red Carpet Bridal Beauty is constantly busy, sending makeup artists to more than 200 weddings per year both near and far. Red Carpet Bridal Beauty is a contract-based company, so Dixon says clients are based across North America and often hire artists for destination weddings in the Caribbean or other vacation locales.
The company consults with brides and their wedding parties months prior – Dixon likes booking clients six months in advance for off-peak ceremonies. “I can’t tell you how many brides I’ve ran into that have opted to do their own makeup. That can be so catastrophic and cause so much unnecessary stress,” she explains. “We always do a trial because it lessens angst, and it also gives us the opportunity to assess skin and facial features.”
Professionally applied makeup is a perfect wedding day enhancement solution for those leery of injections, says Dixon. “I usually tell brides that if they’re considering enhancement just for the day, then avoid it.”
Dixon’s menu ranges from $80 for a no-frills application to $2,500 for a total beauty overhaul for an entire bridal party. “One of the best options for brides on a budget who can’t extend enhancement generosities to the bridesmaids is our Diva Party, where we teach tricks of the trade you can use on the wedding day,” adds Dixon.
In addition to airbrush makeup, which provides flawless and photo-ready coverage due to its silicone formula, Dixon and her coterie of makeup artists offer other hightech solutions that can allay appearance-related fears. “Freeze is a product which works wonders – it plumps up the skin and gets rid of lines,” she says. And Dixon says eye-opening mink eyelashes are the perfect luxury. “They’re naturally dark and have some sheen to them so you don’t have to wear mascara, and because they’re 100 per cent pure mink you can wear them up to 20 times.”