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Beauty: Prep

With the big day approaching, there are so many things on the bride’s mind: the dress, the flowers, the first song, the ceremony – but you can’t forget to put yourself first. From brightening up your smile to getting rid of pesky facial hair, here are some helpful and easy ways to “prep” and look your best.

One of the most attractive qualities a bride possesses is a beaming smile – you’ll be grinning ear-to-ear when you finally glimpse your husband-to-be, so here are some tips for making sure you have the whitest, brightest smile with which to show your joy:

“Whitening is one of the first steps somebody will take to improve (her) smile,” says Julie Moreau of More Smiles (7007 Highway 190, Covington, (985) 809-SMILE (7645)). She describes different ways to whiten: “One would be the older take-home system that use trays and a gel,” she says. “You wear it every night or several hours a day, and it will take several weeks for full results.” The method she recommends for most brides-to-be is in-office whitening.

“When you leave, your teeth are about as white as they’re going to be. Frequently we’ll still send them home with the trays and the bleaching materials so they can maintain it at home.”

For minor alignment or spacing issues, Moreau says another option brides sometimes choose is removable braces, such as Invisalign. “It allows people to avoid having to wear bands and brackets … that are affixed to the teeth,” she says. “It’s not as visible; it’s less intrusive on someone’s social life.”

For someone who wants a big change, the ultimate smile makeover, Moreau says, is a set of veneers. “We have completely transformed many people’s smiles using porcelain veneers in combination with other procedures,”
she says.

Bob Payne of Lakeside Dental Care (2400 Veterans Memorial Blvd., Suite 210, Kenner, 833-3200) recommends bleaching before any fillings are done to the front teeth, because “once you restore a tooth, that part of the tooth cannot be bleached.”

He recommends not wasting time on “over-the-counter” whitening products. “People say ‘I can go to Walmart and buy anything cheaper’ – yes, you can, but it’s not the same product. We sell 35-percent bleach, and you can’t buy that in a grocery store.”

For brides who don’t have the time for invisible braces or don’t want the permanence of veneers, Payne recommends a “relatively new” and more affordable method: the Snap-On Smile. “It looks like a bleaching tray, but it actually fits over your teeth. It’s as if you had a handful of veneers, (and it’s) no more than a skin on the outside of your tooth. You pop it in like a mouth guard. You can eat and drink with them – they would be good for weddings and parties.”

Perfect 10 Salon (5928 West Metairie Ave., Suite 13, Metairie, 734-7373) offers a range of services that will help you “prep” for the big day. They offer a special Shellac manicure that lasts a full two weeks, so having chipped nails won’t be yet another worry at your wedding! “The polish stays shiny,” says Marie Nguyen of Perfect 10. “It doesn’t damage the nails at all – it’s kind of like a gel.” Nguyen also sees many brides who get facial waxes before the wedding. “We do eyebrows, lip and chin,” she says.

Whether you want to brighten your smile or “Shellac” your nails, these tips will help you look your best but, more importantly, you’ll feel great too.

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