Glowing skin

Q: I want to get my skin as smooth and glowy as possible for my wedding day. What should I be doing (and not doing) to get my skin ready?

So your big day is coming up soon and you want your skin to look and feel its best? There are a few simple things you can do to help your skin by your wedding day.

Use gentle, non-abrasive cleansers. Intense scrubbing and exfoliating can increase local inflammation leading to blemishes. Washing with simple soap and water will keep your facial skin looking its best.

Don’t tan! While you may be tempted to tan before your wedding, remember that you will pay for that color change with definite increased risk of skin cancer and premature aging (wrinkles, skin thinning, etc.). If you want to darken your skin color for your wedding, use a self-tanner. There are many good ones. Always err on the side of a lighter color for your type of skin to minimize the chances of it looking artificial. Test your choices out a couple of months before your big day, just to be safe.

If you have any one of a number of common skin disorders, like acne or psoriasis, talk with your dermatologist four to six months ahead of your wedding day to come up with a plan to have things under good control by then. Even if you don’t have any of these conditions, there may be other tools in his or her toolbox (peels, laser treatments, etc.) that can be helpful.

Dr. Peter Ehrnstrom is a dermatologist and skin cancer surgeon at Alaska Center for Dermatology in Anchorage. Visit