Your hands play a big role in your wedding day. Whether you're a bride or a groom, all eyes will be on your mitts as you put your wedding ring on for the very first time.
So regardless of whether you're a dedicated fan of professional manicures, or you've never even applied hand cream (shock-horror!), you're going to want to prep your hands ahead of your big day so they're looking their best.
To advise you on just that, we've recruited the help of Lucy Vardy, the owner and lead therapist at Moon and Stars Beauty Therapy in London.
An expert in skin-related issues including acne, hyper-pigmentation and dehydrated skin, Lucy believes that every man and woman has a right to feel exceptional in their own skin. And, she takes a holistic approach to all skin treatments.
So, who better to help us banish dry hands, flakey nails, and chipped manis? Take it away Lucy…
Your wedding day is undoubtedly the most important day in your life for your left hand, and there is nothing worse than your other half sliding a ring on a grubby, neglected finger.
If you’re looking for ways to improve the quality of the skin on your hands ahead of your big day or tips on how to make sure your nails look strong and healthy with your new ring, these ideas might be just the thing to help.
Curing Dry Skin
If you suffer from dry skin on your hands, apply a hand cream that has been specifically designed for the problem.
Ingredients to look out for include cocoa butter, shea butter and plant oils.
Massage these into your hands as well as in and around your nails so that it gets under the epidermis and hydrates all layers of the skin. It is particularly important to apply hand cream after washing your hands, as many soaps can dehydrate your skin and cause them to feel dry and sensitive.
If you do suffer from dry skin at all, try to avoid products that include high levels of fragrances or acids, as these can aggravate dry skin, subsequently causing your hands to feel sore and irritated.
Hydrating Your Nails
Just like your skin, your nails also require a healthy dose of hydration, but this time, the product you need comes in the form of cuticle oil.
Cuticle oils are able to penetrate deeper into the skin than hand creams, and so are great if your nails are particularly dry or brittle.
When finding a cuticle oil, look for Vitamin E, coconut oil, almond oil or jojoba oil in the list of ingredients, as these are the most effective for hydration.
Shaping, Buffing & Painting
Even if you choose to keep your nail color neutral for the big day, it is always worth shaping and buffing them to ensure a smooth and even surface.
If you do choose not to apply any color to your nails, you should still apply a clear top coat to your nails. This will give them an extra hit of shine, making them appear clean and healthy in all pictures.
However, I would advise using either a light nude or soft pink nail polish on your nails, to ensure that the color of your nails appears even and unblemished.
Preserving Your Mani
After all the hard work that you will undoubtedly have put into your nails, there is nothing worse than ruining all that hard work just days before the wedding.
To keep your nails in perfect condition, avoid exposing your hands to any household cleaning products and acetone or toluene-based nail polish removers, as these will instantly dehydrate the skin on your hands.
If you are required to do any cleaning in the days leading up to your wedding, make sure you use rubber gloves to maintain the quality of your hands and nails, and remember to moisturize after each time you wash.
If you're having a professional mani ahead of your wedding, book yourself in for a manicure no more than two days before the big day.
Great tips. Especially good advice for grooms who might not be indulging in pre-wedding treatments, though I think even if you're planning a professional mani before your wedding, you're still going to want your hands and nails in good order well before that.
Thanks so much to Lucy, and be sure to check out Moon and Stars Beauty Therapy for more information on the holistic treatments she offers.
Get more ideas for wedding day nails.