Wedding beauty timeline: when to get a spray tan, manicure, facial and wax

You’ve set the big day, now it’s ready, set, prep. But how do you know when to book in for all of the pre-wedding treatments you have planned? It can be tricky to know whether to leave appointments until the last minute, or if some need to be done days or weeks before.

Here, we list out your full bridal beauty timeline, plus some helpful treatment and product suggestions, to help you book in for all of the essential appointments that’ll have you feeling wedding ready.

So, from getting a mani and a pedi to booking in for a facial, here’s what you should book in months, weeks and days before…

Your complete wedding beauty timeline: from booking in for a facial to getting a spray tan

Your wedding beauty timeline

One month before your wedding

Fillers: Not all brides will want facial fillers or Botox before their big day, but if it is something you’re keen to try or to top up, you want to make sure you don’t do this too close to your wedding.

Why? Fillers can cause redness, swelling and bruising – things you definitely don’t want showing in your wedding photos. You need to leave enough time for everything to subside and for the best, final results to be seen. If you’re having Botox, it tends to last upwards of three months, so you’ll see the peak of the results at around one month after having it injected.

Top tip: New to fillers and Botox? Make sure you go to a professional clinic with a trained clinician who can advise on the right amount to have, the right areas to have injections and the right aftercare. Make sure you do your research ahead of booking an appointment, and don’t be tempted to book someone who doesn’t have the proper qualifications.

If you want professionally whitened teeth, you need around four weeks to complete the course
If you want professionally whitened teeth, you need around four weeks to complete the course

Teeth whitening: If you want professionally whitened teeth, you need around four weeks to complete the course. Haven’t had them done before? Pop into somewhere like SmilePod to have custom trays made so that you can whiten your teeth at home with a hydrogen peroxide-based whitening gel. Prices start from £329 here. It is possible to book an in-chair whitening session, but this is usually more expensive.

Three weeks before your wedding

Hair: If you’re looking to cut your hair, tweak your color or have your balayage or base color refreshed, two to three weeks before your wedding is a good time for this – unless you have bleached blonde hair and want your roots to be hidden, or you have grays you want to cover, in which case you can leave this to a week before your wedding.

If you have or are having hair extensions fitted, two to three weeks before your big day is also the perfect time to book in for an appointment. This is because you want the hair to have a bit of grip so that it holds curls or a style well. For a full guide to the top choice for brides, thanks to the length and volume they give, check out our page and video on tape extensions next.

It’s also worth noting that during the final month run-up to your wedding, you should stick to using skincare and bodycare products that you know your skin likes. This is not the time to go adding in new steps, products or ingredients, just in case they cause an adverse reaction.

Two weeks before your wedding

Facial: We all know that facials can sometimes cause our skin to purge, resulting in a few pimples and blemishes in the week that follows. For this reason, a facial is best done 10 days to two weeks before your big day – especially if your chosen facial involves microneedling or a minor peel.

A facial is best done 10 days to two weeks before your big day, as you don't want a bridal breakout
A facial is best done 10 days to two weeks before your big day, as you don’t want a bridal breakout

We love: For the best pre-wedding facial that combines a bit of baby Botox (surface-level Botox that won’t freeze the muscles, but increases radiance) with six steps of stimulating and glow-boosting skincare, try WOW Facial, from £250 nationwide here. Our representative beauty editor gave it a test before a wedding and couldn’t recommend it enough to brides.

Three days before your wedding

Wax: If you’re choosing to have a wax, this is definitely something that should be done 3-4 days before your wedding as you want your skin to be smooth, but also you don’t want any “straight out of the salon” redness or bumps.

Why? “To be able to enjoy smooth skin throughout your event, I’d recommend getting a wax two to three days before for the best results,” says Shimol from London-based salon Guys & Dolls.

And to make sure there are no post-wax bumps? “Try to keep the area clean, dry, and moisturised for 48 hours after the appointment, as this can help reduce irritation until the skin has recovered from waxing,” Shimol says.

Eyebrows: Three to four days before your wedding is also the best time to get your eyebrows done. If you want them waxed, threaded or tinted, you can leave it fairly last minute (although perhaps not the morning of in case of any redness), but why not have it paired with your body waxing appointment to save a second salon trip?

Two days before your wedding

Fake tan: You definitely don’t want to be fake tanning before you’ve had your wax, as this could well strip the color from your skin. Two days before is the best time to have a professional tan or to tan yourself at home.

Why? “To ensure no self tan catastrophes on your big day, apply your fake tan two to three days before your wedding. This will give your tan time to settle and develop into a gorgeous, natural-looking glow, and there’ll be no risk of any product transferring onto your dress,” explain the tanning experts at St Tropez.

A gel manicure will help minimise the risk of polish chipping
A gel manicure will help minimise the risk of polish chipping

Top tip: If you’ve got sensitive skin and you don’t want to risk redness or a breakout on your wedding day, only get your spray tan coating your skin up to your neck. For your face, mix a few drops of tanning drops like St Tropez Luxe Tan Tonic Glow Drops, £20 here, into your normal face moisturizer the night before for an even, glowing result.

Mani and pedi: Two to three days before your wedding is a good time to get your finger and toenails done, to ensure there’s no grow-out visible in the photos. We’d also recommend getting a shellac or a gel polish, as this minimises the risk of them chipping before the big day.

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