Get that full-body bridal glow with these expert tips

Showing a bit more skin than usual? Our experts tell Nicole Conner how to get a full-body flawless finish

As soon as the mercury rises above ten degrees, I consider it ‘taps aff’ weather and become fastidious with my fake-tan schedule: I’m routinely exfoliating, moisturising and bronzing in case the sun decides to show and I can get my pins out. Summer brides will perhaps be thinking along the same lines, opting for dresses that’ll let them flash some flesh as they strut down the aisle in the sunshine. So how do you achieve that envy-worthy bridal body glow? Our experts tell all.

Gorgeous bridal glow from I Do Makeup by Geo Kane
I Do Makeup By Geo Kane worked her magic on this beaut bride. (Photo: Bear and Butterfly Photography)

Glow your own way

“Body makeup is definitely most popular in summer as more backless, off-the-shoulder and strappy dresses are worn,” says Danielle Dickson Makeup Artist. She is often asked to highlight the bride’s collarbones, décolletage and shoulders, as this gives a healthy glow to the skin.

“I apply Sol de Janeiro Rio Sunset Body Glow (which smells amazing and won’t transfer to your dress) on a duo fibre brush then to the back of my hand to remove any excess before buffing it on to the desired areas – et voilà, amazing, healthy-looking skin!” explains Danielle.

Makeup by Leigh Blaney also likes to give her brides a shine, and sweeps Charlotte Tilbury Wonderglow down bare arms. “MAC Face and Body foundation mixed with Strobe Cream also gives luminosity and added coverage for any little imperfections. One of my brides had a thigh-split dress and I brushed this all down her leg for an amazing finish,” she adds.

Danielle Dickson Makeup Artist applies false lashes to a bride
Danielle Dickson Makeup Artist hard at work on the morning of a wedding (Photo: Gary Bonar Photography)

Under cover

Body makeup can also be used to cover blemishes and tattoos on the big day, but it is wise to forewarn MUAs if this is something you’d like, according to Leigh Blaney: “It’s not something you can add on last minute. That’s because coverage work and colour correction take time.”

Danielle Dickson echoes this, but adds you wouldn’t need to discuss covering blemishes on the chest or back with her beforehand, as she will always bring suitable products with her on the day. “However, tattoo coverage can take up to an hour, depending on the size or colour. You can add this into your makeup trial as well to see how it’ll look,” she suggests.

The best way to cover inking and blemishes is to build up coverage using light layers, giving it time to set, according to Leigh Blaney. She does have a word of warning, though: there is a chance of transfer to your dress. “It’s makeup – if it’s rubbed, it will transfer, unfortunately.”

For Leigh, the most successful cover-ups are on areas away from your gown, such as the chest, the outside of the arm or the back of the neck. “If there’s a chance it could rub on your dress, I wouldn’t bother – you’ll just worry about it all day,” she adds.

Tattoo cover up by Makeup by Leigh Blaney
This bride got her tats covered by Makeup by Leigh Blaney – and looks amazing

I Do Makeup by Geo Kane also advises brides not to overdo body makeup: “Too much of anything is never good,” is her view. “It can build up on the skin and alter the look of anything else you apply.

“I’d suggest you shower and moisturise as normal on the big day,” she says. “By the time it comes to adding any enhancement on the skin, products should be well absorbed, giving a nice, nourished base.”

Tans across the board

Planning on wearing fake tan and hoping to cover blemishes, too? That’s no problem, according to Danielle Dickson. “Body makeup can be applied easily over fake tan, as long as it isn’t instant (which I would advise against as it will transfer to your dress),” she adds. Her top tip? Apply moisturiser over your tan before the makeup goes on so you have a smooth, even base – tan can often dry out, which affects skin texture.

Georgina Kane agrees, adding that regularly moisturising and exfoliating the skin provides the best base to work on.

Bridal party glam by Makeup by Leigh Blaney
Makeup By Leigh Blaney got the whole squad looking gorgeous

Don’t sweat it

Thinking about going down the cosmetic tweakment route before you dare to bare? If so, Infinity Skin Clinic in Edinburgh has plenty of options. Its high-frequency treatment is one of the most popular among brides. It involves using a glass probe which emits thermal energy that causes the vasoconstriction of blood vessels at the surface of the skin to revitalise the area.

It is non-invasive and requires no down time, and can be used on both the face and the body: “Target fine lines, acne, dark circles and cellulite and areas that need skin tightening (jowls, arms, abdomen, bottom or thighs, for example) with this treatment. Start as early as possible if you have specific concerns, and allow four months to complete the treatment block,” says the clinic’s Dr Claire Narrie.

If you’re marrying in warmer weather, you might already be sweating at the thought of, well, sweating. It’s possible to have Botox injected into the underarms to block the nerves that trigger the sweat glands. Dr Narrie says the treatment will have a peak effect 12 days after it’s performed, so give yourself time to have a preview then top up two weeks before the big day.

With tips like these, you’ll be glowing all the way down the aisle!

Stock image of female getting aesthetic treatments
Tweakments by Infinity Skin Clinic will get your skin in order (Photo: Shutterstock)

Top tip

“Use an oil-free moisturiser under your body makeup to ensure the products do not transfer on to your dress. My favourite is the St Moriz oil-free moisturiser – it’s designed to be used on top of fake tan and has a lovely light fragrance.” says Danielle Dickson Makeup Artist

The glow-getters

Scottish-owned Crazy Angel’s tan experts give us tips on how to get a gorgeous bridal glow using fake tanning and body makeup products. They suggest doing all hair removal 24 hours before you apply any products, as well as a full-body exfoliation and moisturise. If possible, repeat the exfoliation and moisturising the day you apply the product – however, all products must be washed off the skin before applying tan. Avoid loofahs or rubbing the skin dry after showering. Moisturising daily will prolong your tan

Products from Crazy Angel and MAC
Left: Crazy Angel’s Body Foundation, £13, is buildable, will even out skin tone and cover imperfections; right: Brides can use MAC’s Strobe Cream, £30, as a primer, illuminator or all-over moisturiser