HCG Bridal Survival Guide
Are you a bride looking to tie the knot and marry the love of your life?
Are you the father of the bride who will be walking your daughter down the aisle or the mother of the bride or groom needing to make a splash on your kid’s big day?
Perhaps you are one of the chosen few to be in the bridal party as a bridesmaid, maid of honor, best man or groomsman and need to look your absolute best.
WHY WELLNESS? BECAUSE IT’S YOUR BIG DAY AFTER ALL!
If you answered to any of the above, we have a number of solutions for you to help you look stunning and confident. We all know that every bride wants to look and feel like the most beautiful version of herself on her wedding day. Unfortunately, a large part of what is often overlooked during the weeks and months leading to this special day is proper nutrition, fitness and skincare treatments. These things tend to take a back seat to the hair, nails, makeup, table setting, flower appointments, etc.
WHY YOU NEED US:
At the Healthcare Gallery and Wellness Spa in Baton Rouge, we believe that incorporating weight loss, fitness, skin care and nutrition into your wedding-ready regimen is not only vital but necessary. We can put together a package for you, your family or friends participating in the wedding to make sure you all look and feel your absolute best on your special day. Keep in mind that these wedding pictures will be shared by any number of people and will be available for review for decades to come.
The HCG Bridal-Party Survival Guide
Anti-Aging Skin Resurfacing (3 – 6 months prior)
Consider a skin resurfacing system aimed at improving and stimulating collagen and thus improving the skin’s appearance. This is best suited for brides looking to target fine lines, wrinkles, old old acne scars, mild discoloration and more. The Pixel by the Harmony laser, IPL or micro needling using the Eclipse Micropen are all treatments that are geared towards accomplishing this goal. It is recommended you do maintenance facial treatments at least once monthly to maintain best results once you have invested in this type of treatment. As the skin ages, collagen and elastin production is reduced and these are two fundamental elements that help maintain strong, elastic, and healthy appearing skin. When collagen and elastin are lost, hormonal changes, sun exposure, and environmental factors cause the skin to sag, appear more thin, and have more visible signs of damage. Our Pixel laser technology penetrates deep into the skin and creates many tiny holes in the skin. This induces deep-seated heating that further stimulates collagen formation and promotes widespread healing of the skin. It helps improve uneven skin tones, fill in deep lines and reduce scarring and sun damage by promoting growth of new collagen and elastin while minimizing the signs of aging. This procedure does leave a sunburned look for about two days followed by peeling on days 3-4. It can be done on the face, neck, chest, upper arms, hands, and back and it is highly recommended that you do the face, neck and chest together to keep the skin’s appearance consistent.
The Skin Pen procedure by the Eclipse Micropen is similarly a skin resurfacing procedure but without heat or the need for lasers. Removing heat from the equation also makes for a safer, more comfortable treatment with a very low complication rate and less downtime. Overall, either of these procedures can be done as frequently as 1 month apart and some brides with deep acne scarring may need up to 3-5 treatments. It is recommended you do maintenance facial treatments at least once monthly to maintain best results once you have invested in this type of treatment to give you the best results prior to the big day.
Body & Face Contouring | Skin Tightening ( 3 – 6 months prior )
If you are looking to rock that open-back dress and expose your arms or wear that gown with the high slit on the evening of the wedding, then you may be grappling with the chance that someone might notice the flabby skin on your arms or the cellulite on your legs. Cellulite is in fact a skin condition affecting over 90% of most post-pubescent women and commonly appears on the hips, buttocks and legs. Contrary to popular belief, it is not caused by being overweight, as many believe. This condition mostly affects women and it begins to appear in girls around the age of 14 and increases as we mature when the subcutaneous skin layer thins and redistributes. Cellulite often forms in postnatal women and often in those who take birth control pills because the body’s waste system can’t get rid of the enormous flow of estrogen in the body. On the other hand, if being bikini-ready by looking firmed and toned in the abdomen and thigh area is also a pre-requisite for that upcoming tropical honeymoon vacation, then our Accent skin tightening technology might be the one for you. It uses a unique mechanism whereby high radiofrequency (RF) energy is transmitted directly to the tissue, causing rapid rotation of its water molecules. This rotation generates friction which produces powerful and effective heat. Because skin is composed mostly of water, the heating from this mechanism induces volumetric contraction within the skin, stimulating the formation of new collagen and causing connective tissue to contract thereby improving the skin’s contour, texture and architecture.
Laser Hair Removal (6 months prior)
Whether you are headed to a topical paradise post-wedding or planning to visit a major metropolis, removing that excess, unwanted hair is a must. We recommend that you start this at least six months before the wedding. This is because typically, four to six treatments are required and are usually spaced out in one month intervals to give you enough time to see significant results. How it works is, a beam of light is absorbed by the pigment located in the hair follicles, heating it up and reducing its ability to regrow. Clients shave the affected area the night before and must wear SPF everyday in order to avoid pigmentation. Believe me, not having to shave during the honeymoon is a glorious thing!
On a scale of (1 -10) with 10 being the most painful, most brides describe the pain level as a 4 or 5. According to them, the laser actually hurts less than waxing. It is usually described as feeling like you’re getting a bad sunburn but the sensation is only temporary. The most common areas for brides are the bikini area and underarms, but typically once they see how easy the procedure is, it is not unusual for them to return to have other areas done. Keep in mind it is cheaper to bundle areas ultimately but you are also welcome to pay for each treatment piecemeal. Side note- it is a popular misconception that laser hair removal patients are completely fuzz-free. In general, it is really hair reduction as it is unlikely to get rid of every single hair. Typically clients can reasonably expect to have about 90% of the unwanted hair eliminated.
Microdermabrasion & Anti-Aging Facials (3 – 6 months prior)
Once you have invested in a skin resurfacing regimen as described above, it is best to secure your investment by performing maintenance treatments at least once monthly. This could be in the form of a type of facial coupled with a microdermabrasion or a chemical peel. A microdermabrasion is best for clients who are overly sensitive to chemical agents in cosmeceuticals and peels and removes the superficial layers of the skin using mildly abrasive aluminum oxide crystals. This procedure removes not only dead skin, but polishes the outer surface and drains clogged pores which translates to a smoother, softer skin. This takes about 45 minutes as it is coupled with a facial and done at least once monthly for maximum results. Brides describe the sensation as very fine sand rubbing against the skin and report the pain level at about a 3. There is no downtime and you can use makeup afterwards. We do however recommend that clients avoid any products containing retinods or alpha hydroxy acids such as glycol and salicylic acids at least a week before treatment.
Diet, IV Vitamin Drip and Nutrition: (6 months prior)
Some brides often report feeling sluggish, fatigued and bloated chronically and this is certainly no way to start your married life with the love of your life. Added stress during this period of wedding planning for weeks and months leading up to this day can often compound this problem. We strongly recommend you get an ALCAT test to investigate up to 350 possible foods or chemical sensitivity that might be the culprit. Following this, we can then customize a nutritional plan for you based on this data and often times, clients report feeling better almost instantaneously. The diet plan can be customized by one of our nutrition coaches or can be prepared and pre-portioned for you by one of our approved food vendors. This takes away the stress of having to take a day a week to prep and prepare your foods and you can use that time instead to focus on your wedding planning or use it as a day for self focus. Just having to walk to your refrigerator or freezer, choose what you want to eat for that meal and microwave it, can be a life saver! Some brides may be good candidates for our physician-supervised weight loss program with prescription medications for a short period of time and this can be provided following a consultation with our Chief Medical Officer.
Appropriate nutrition along with fitness instruction by our trainers is a perfect recipe for healthy weight loss to make sure you reach your desired goal and look fabulous for your big day. We’ll expand on this below. Not only will this be a catalyst to lose weight for your wedding but once you see how easy it is, most clients continue their weight loss journey or maintain their weight loss after their wedding day based on lifestyle on their new lifestyle choices.
Some brides choose to have monthly IV Vitamin drips prior to their wedding to boost their immunity. This also provides you with the hydration and nutrients to provide your skin with that wonderful glow besides an overall sense of wellbeing. Intravenous (IV) vitamin drips help deliver high dose vitamins, minerals and amino acids directly to the blood stream for maximum absorption. and allows the nutrients to nourish itself at the cellular level. By using this method, we can safely deliver doses that will otherwise not be tolerated orally.
- Pay attention to your diet (see above).
- Don’t forget your beauty sleep. Appropriate sleep is important for the repair and regeneration of the body’s cells and organs. Insufficient sleep is associated with decreased hydration, decreased immunity, increased inflammation and stress.
- Eat foods high in omega 3s, best found in fatty fish like salmon and sardines. One study showed that just 3 months of omega 3 supplements led to a 10% increase in skin elasticity.
- Water intake: Drinking water is a no-brainer when it comes to hydration. The recommended 64 ounces of water or half your body weight in ounces a day will add vibrancy to your skin. Be sure to also incorporate fruits and vegetables with high water content like watermelon, tomatoes and cucumbers.
- Lower your salt intake: This is not only healthy in general, but excess sodium forces the skin cells to move their precious water reserves to the blood, leaving your complexion dull and dry. Sodium-induced water retention can also leave your face or legs looking puffy.
Functional Fitness (3 – 6 months prior)
So whether you have 30 days or 6 months until the big day, it’s never too late or too early to start getting in shape. From the moment you walk down the aisle until the very last dance, all eyes will be on you. If you’re looking to slim down and tone up before the big day, look no further. Our recommendations below go hand in hand with our diet and nutrition recommendations above and should be used in conjunction. To start, we strongly suggest that you set a timeline. For example, if you want to lose 10 pounds, then give yourself at least 2 months. 3-4 months to lose at least 20 lbs and 6 months if your aim is to lose more than 30. These timelines will allow you to lose weight in a healthy way.
Treat your workout like a non-negotiable appointment in the wedding planning process. You wouldn’t skip a meeting with your event coordinator to discuss catering, so why compromise how you will look and feel on the big day, right?
If you can, consider adding yoga or pilates to your fitness regimen. You’ll not only improve your posture, but also flexibility and strength, as well as gain stress-reduction benefits, which is something every busy bride needs.
If you don’t have a lot of time to workout as we already assumed, then high intensity interval training (HIIT) or Tabata might be suitable for you.
Finally, enlist your bridesmaids or hubby-to-be as workout buddies to help stay on track. You can sign up as a small group and enjoy all the benefits a small group class provides.
Botox/Fillers (at least 3 months prior)
Botox and similar products like Dysport can be used to temporarily relax the facial muscles responsible for the appearance of wrinkles. Three major areas a typically the most treated and those are the glabellar area between the eyebrows, the forehead horizontal lines and the area just lateral to the eyes called the crow’s feet. This procedure within 24-72 hours allows you the liberty to turn back time and appear more youthful.
For brides who want fuller lips for the wedding, we recommend hyaluronic acid dermal fillers like Restylane, Restylane Lyft and Restylane Silk. Restylane is among one of the well known and trusted brands in the industry and provided at the Healthcare Gallery and Wellness Spa. They are a great option because they give a soft, natural feel. We highly recommend you try them ahead of time to make sure you will like the way you look on your wedding. Just make sure you get your injections more than a month before the wedding — that way you’ll have plenty of time for any swelling or bruising to subside. Oh, and by the way, it’s always best to take a conservative approach and start on lower dosages to avoid looking fake and overdone — you can always increase your dosage next time if you decide you want a more dramatic look. Lip fillers can last anywhere between 4 and 12 months, so keep that in mind as you’re planning your timeline.
Body Work | Massage Therapy (anytime)
You’ve spent the last few months planning your big day, now it’s time to relax and pamper. Massages are a perfect way to work off those pre-wedding nerves. Not only does a massage relax you, but it increases blood flow which plumps up slack skin and adds vitality to a dull complexion (perfect for that strapless dress). A Swedish massage may be the best bet but a therapeutic massage can also reduce stress and anxiety, relieve tension, relax muscles, reduce pain, improve circulation and immune function, and increase range of motion and flexibility.
*Call us today 225-384-5378 to find out how you can start your bridal preparation journey. Download our app to start earning rewards and sign up to stay updated on our events and promotions!