The most perfect man in the world just presented you with that velvet-lined box, and nothing could top this joyous moment. But even if your cup runneth over, your wallet’s looking a little thin. A girl can only wish for an unlimited supply of funds, but a real bride on a budget learns to make it look like she does!
How do you glam it up from head to toe and save money at the same time? Glad you asked: Here are some frugal tips to getting starry-eyed and flawlessly beautiful without breaking the bank.
Don’t sweat It
Even if your wedding’s in the middle of winter, a little perspiration is inevitable and can ruin your makeup. The solution is antiperspirant products such as creams, primers and even setting powders to keep you looking as cool as a cucumber. One of Oprah‘s favorites is the Model in a Bottle matte setting spray (ModelinaBottle.com, $18). It firmly sets your foundation and eye makeup for flawless looks for long periods.
Locks of lust
Have you ever noticed how thick and shiny women’s hair is in Bollywood films? The secret to their luscious locks is oil: argan, Moroccan, macadamia or coconut oil will do the trick. Use it as a leave-in conditioner leading up to your big day. Try the Healing Oil Spray by Macadamia (Ulta, $14.50). It’s light, doesn’t weigh your hair down and comes out in a fine mist so you don’t have to worry about getting uneven globs of oil in your hair.
Eliminate tired eyes
You can buy expensive eye creams and anti-wrinkle treatments — or for the same results, just hydrate. The night before your big day is crucial to the way your skin will look and you’re probably not going to get enough sleep. Coconut water is the best way to hydrate your skin and prevent dark circles under the eyes. It has high levels of electrolytes, purifies toxins in your body and replenishes mineral loss. It also adds a natural shine to the skin and reduces the appearance of tired eyes.
Turn heads with a brighter smile
Don’t over-the-counter this one with white strips. You can really damage your teeth and gums if you have any dental work that needs to be done. Instead, get real pearly whites for a fraction of the price by checking for a local dentist on Brighter.com. The site offers 52 percent off cleaning services and 10 to 40 percent off all other dental procedures.
Tanned to the T
Every bride wants even, sun-kissed skin, but there’s always the risk of burning at the tanning salon or streaking with spray tans. After trying a dozen, I landed on one that works like a charm and is less than $10 per bottle: Neutrogena’s Build-a-Tan Gradual Sunless Lotion (CVS.com, $10). At a modest price, this product allows you to customize your color rather than immediately shocking it into a darker shade.
Now wait, I know what you’re thinking — but these are not your old-school press-on nails. That concept has been reinvented to create something that actually works: Salon Effects Polish Strips by Sally Hansen (SallyHansen.com, $8.50). There are 40 shades to choose from and it’s not a nail strip, but an actual polish that’s already dry and ready to wear.