Zits Happen: Avoid Wedding Day Breakouts

There are lots of products that can combat these last-minute embarrassments

By Samantha Cabrera

Women Checking for Blemishes in a Handheld Mirror
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It's every bride's dream to wake up with flawless skin on her wedding day. The key is to prepare weeks beforehand and keep up with general skin maintenance, so you have a clear, even canvas to work with when you really need it.

  • What You Need to Know
  • Be sure to stock up on makeup remover, cotton balls, gentle facial cleanser and toner, small towels, lightweight moisturizer, an exfoliant, a clarifying mask and a blemish spot treatment containing 2% salicylic acid the week before the wedding.

Step 1:

Start a routine of regular skin maintenance. If you don't have a skin regimen, it's crucial to begin regularly washing your face and using a toner to get skin in its best shape. At the end of each day, thoroughly remove makeup with a gentle makeup remover and cotton swab. After this, wash skin with a gentle facial cleanser to remove dirt, film left behind by makeup remover and any leftover makeup.

Step 2:

Use a toner. Follow nightly cleansing with a toner to keep skin tone even and soft. Apply with a cotton ball at the forehead, cheeks, nose and chin and then rub any excess throughout the face.

Step 3:

Moisturize daily, morning and night. A lightweight moisturizer will keep skin supple without adding a heavy layer of moisture to skin (which can clog pores and cause breakouts). Dot moisturizer at the forehead, cheeks, nose, chin and work it down to the neck for thorough application.

Step 4:

Use an exfoliant once a week. You don't want to go crazy with the exfoliant, as you only want to remove the first layer of dead skin. Using an exfoliant regularly removes any flaky skin and prevents skin from drying out.

Step 5:

Use a mask 1 to 2 times a week in the month leading up to the wedding. A mask should always be used to deep clean skin on a regular basis, but in the month leading up to your wedding day, it will be especially useful. A drugstore or department store brand will work, as long as you're using it consistently. The best way to use a mask is to apply a thick layer, allow it to dry at least 10 minutes or until the time suggested on the directions. Remove in the shower, as many masks are difficult to remove in the sink without making a mess.

Step 6:

Keep spot treatment nearby. A spot treatment containing 2% salicylic acid should go with you everywhere. If you feel a zit coming on, immediately apply the spot treatment only to the area in question. If you spread it all over, you risk drying out skin. If you're at home and out of spot treatment, use standard toothpaste (this can only be done with the paste variety, not gel toothpastes) on the blemish to achieve the same effect. This should be worn overnight and removed in the morning with warm water and a small towel.

Step 7:

Drink plenty of water, get ample rest (at least eight hours a night, especially the week of the wedding), and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, which are rich in antioxidants and help skin stabilize.

  • Tips & Warnings
  • Keep your cool. It's important not to stress out in the weeks leading up to the wedding. Yes, there's a chance of things going wrong, but you can't control everything.
  • An arsenal of products can't help you avoid wedding day breakouts if they're not accessible to you. This means you have to remember to pack all these cleansers if you're staying away from home the night before your wedding.
  • If a zit should appear, don't pick or prod at it too much. Try to reduce the swelling with ice, and then apply concealer as best you can.

About the Author

Samantha Cabrera is a freelance writer, covering fashion and beauty.

Planning Reminder:

Manicured hands and feet with pink daisies

From hand to toe

Make sure those hands are properly pampered pre-wedding. Between ring exchanges and wedding cake-cutting photos, your hands need to be ready for their close-up. Pamper your feet, too, for any open-toe shoes situation or just to feel better.

View your wedding checklist!


Wedding Glossary


A non-invasive cosmetic procedure that removes the outermost layer of dead skin to lessen the appearance of wrinkles, scars and sun damage.

View the Full Weddings Glossary
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