Put your best face forward on the big day.

By Nicole Moleti
September 02, 2019

Months of sweat, sand, and surf can wreak havoc on a bride-to-be's skin. Although important, sunscreens and oil-control skincare can also be to blame for skin that's suffocating and dehydrated due to clogged pores by the end of the summer months. The same can be said for matte makeup—while it's helpful on a hot day, months of use can lead to congestion. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to get your skin back in shape before your fall wedding.

Related: The Best Pre-Wedding Skincare Regimen for Every Skin Type

Steam Your Skin

Before you cleanse, a great way to loosen dirt and debris from the pores is to treat yourself to a good-old fashioned steam. If done too often, though, steaming can dehydrate the skin so be careful not to overdo it.

Double Cleanse

If you are prone to clogged pores, get into the habit of double cleansing. This term is taken from Korean skincare routines, and it's an easy way to be sure that the skin is completely free of makeup, dirt, and debris. The second wash allows for a deeper clean. The most important thing to know about this method of washing your face is that instead of simply washing twice, you must use two different types of cleansers. The first one should be an oil-based cleanser that will lift excess sebum and impurities from the pores and the surface of the skin. The second should be a water-based cleanser that will be able to get into the deeper layers of the skin after the oil barrier has been cleared from the first cleanse.

Exfoliate

Months of sunscreens and matte makeup can leave the surface of your skin dehydrated and flaky. This dead layer of skin must be removed to ensure that pores do not become clogged, as dead skin and debris can get stuck inside pores causing breakouts. What's more, they'll also stretch the pore wall, leaving pores looking enlarged over time. Exfoliation can be done mechanically with a device like a Clarisonic, with a physical scrub, or with a chemical topical. No matter which method your prefer, be sure not to over-exfoliate as this can damage the top layer of skin. If at home treatments don't seem to be working, consider investing in a clinical peel or microdermabrasion treatment from your dermatologist.

Apply a Charcoal Mask

Activated charcoal has become popular as of late, but the skincare product really bas been around forever. The reason you'll find it in so many masks? Charcoal absorbs oil and toxins from pores. It's important to note that masks can over-dry the skin, so use these sparingly and only when you feel like your skin really needs a little extra TLC.

Use Oil-Free Skincare

When all of your cleansing and exfoliating is complete, be sure to apply a hydrating moisturizer that won't leave skin greasy, reversing all of your pore-cleansing work. When clogged pores are a concern, it's best to use light-weight hydrators that are water-based that will repair and moisten the skin without added oils.

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