How I Conquered Wedding Makeup and Hair Despite My Allergies & Eczema

I still can't believe our wedding was only FOUR months ago! :-D Can we just stop time so I can re-live that week? Best. Week. Ever. Our mountain cabin honeymoon absolutely left our hearts in Colorado! Dreamy...

Before I got to that point, though... I had to make sure I'd be able to get my hair and makeup done professionally WITHOUT having an allergic reaction (which can also cause my eczema to flare up). A few of my allergens are very commonly found in makeup / personal care products:

  • propylene glycol
  • sodium benzoate
  • benzoic acid

I've got my favorite every day products, buuut since I don't get married every day... I had some thinking to do!


The Makeup

I had my makeup done by a friend of mine who owns her own salon, which was peeeerfect. I knew I could trust her which is SO huge when your allergic reactions can leave you in extreme pain.

She was very accommodating and did a bunch of emailing with me beforehand about my chemical allergies. The only product of mine that she couldn't find a solution for was blush. So, we used my Neutrogena Healthy Skin Blends Blush.

The foundation, eye shadow, eyeliner and mascara? EASY! They were all by Motives!

Next, we scheduled a trial run. I wanted to do this earlier than most brides. The reason being if I DID have an allergic reaction... My skin would need time to heal before we could go a second round.

The thing we were most nervous about was the glue for the eyelashes.

My skin HATES adhesive… band-aids, tape, you name it. It’s a no-no. So, instead of taking the risk on my face,  we put the glue (by Duo Adhesive) on my arm and left it on for about thirty minutes.

And I was FINE! I almost couldn't believe it!

With no reaction, I was willing to "go for it". She applied the lashes which were by  and made from real human hair. So cool! And kinda weird that I glued somebody else's hair to my eyes, but hey... somehow I'm alright with that, lol. 

False lashes take a few minutes to get used to, but then you forget they’re even there! I left the lashes on until I went to bed and was STILL without an allergic reaction.

I. Was. Thrilled.

The Hair

Ahhhhhhh hair products... perfect places to find propylene glycol, sodium benzoate and benzoic acid... ESPECIALLY propylene glycol.

As far as these allergies go... the less products, the better. I was going for a touch of bohemian so loose waves were perfect for me :-)

My biggest tip above all is this: during your engagement, keep away from introducing new things into your environment... as much as possible, anyways. The more I introduce into my environment at once, the worse my body does.

To top my hair, I bought a great flower crown from Roses and Lemons on Etsy as opposed to going for the more traditional veil... That way, I wouldn't have anything extra touching the skin on my face. The last thing I wanted was to risk a reaction.

I've had consistent allergic reactions to polyester and actually avoided 99% of synthetics for four years. I began reintroducing synthetics during the end of our engagement because I was tired of having to find dresses for the wedding events that were 100% natural. Polyester, though? I still keep it far away from my skin, that's for sure.

The night before the wedding, I washed and braided my hair and made sure to use zero product as my stylist instructed...

The next morning (day of the wedding!! eeeeee!!!! I love it), my maid of honor and I headed to the salon...

All I brought with was my hairspray - that was literally the only product we used to style it. 

...buuut even though I can control what products I bring… I can’t control what they use on other people in the salon… and oh my gosh do those hair dryers blow EVERYTHING around... which became a problem. I had an uncontrollable coughing fit which could only be suppressed by sipping water constantly.  

My stylist of six years recently left the company and her chair was more toward the nice big open entryway… so this was kinda new to me. ACTUALLY (while we're on the subject), my stylist quit after I made the appointment and nobody called to tell me. I only happened to find out that was the case because I checked in on the appointment confirmation. They didn't even have anybody assigned to me yet... BUT WE DON'T NEED TO GO THERE, RIGHT? My brain only melted a tiny bit when I heard the news.

I know that hair stylists have their designated chairs, so I'll admit I was a little afraid to make waves by asking her to move her chair for my appointments.  I'll ask next time, though!

All-in-all, our wedding day was perfect... the weather pulled through, the guests were happy and I married THE most stand-up wonderful man in this universe. I'm so lucky I could pinch myself!!


Did you have to make any special modifications to YOUR wedding due to your health?

Share your story right here on the blog!

If you want to see the beautiful photos from our ceremony and the reception, click here!! Aaand if you want to see Matt's adorably sweet proposal (OMG CUTE OVERLOAD) which included our dog and cat being dressed up in matching tuxedos, click HERE!

All photos courtesy of Curtis Lehmkuhl