On top of a cliff overlooking Lake Wanaka in New Zealand, the Gary Pepper Girl founder said ‘I do’ to her partner of 11 years Luke Shadbolt.
From the outside looking down at the photos on Instagram, the wedding, which took place on May 19, was near impossible to fault. Even the moment the bride’s three metre long Valentino veil flew off as the celebrant declared ‘you may now kiss your bride’ was perfection.
But how much time, effort and money went into creating the 28-year-old’s wedding look?
In a lengthy post for Into The Gloss, Nicole shared everything she did/put on/spent on her face and body in order to look and feel amazing on her wedding day.
Wedding skin prep
Nicole has been entrusting her pores to Sydney-based celebrity facialist Melanie Grant – whose clients include Cate Blanchett and Lara Bingle – for years. A month out from the wedding, she upped her treatments to three per week.
A deep cleanse using sonophoresis and microdermabrasion using an ultrafine diamond tip (once monthly), custom lactic acid and niacinamide or enzyme peels, vitamin infusions like vitamin C, resveratrol, niacinamide, ferulic acid, squalene, hyaluronic acid, liquorice extract, AHAs applied with ultrasound, Bioloqigue Recherche’s masks, light therapies and facial massages.
As in, these facials are no joke. Melanie’s facials also start at $150 but can cost upwards of $600 for a deluxe treatments like Nicole’s.
Melanie also came over the morning of Nicole’s wedding to do a quick facial, which she doesn’t recommend unless you know exactly what the outcome will be. Basically, you need to employ a wizard of a facialist.
Wedding fitness routine
Nicole said she hired a PT to target specific areas of her body – for her, the arms, armpits, abs and butt. She committed to three gym classes per week and two private PT sessions.
She also started private pilates sessions twice a week, one month out from the wedding, and a remedial massage once every fortnight to support the amount of exercise she was doing. Depending on where you go and how long for, these massages can cost between $60 and $200 each.
PT and Pilates training varies too – upwards of $60 per private session.
Nicole did use one cheapo hack to ease her sore muscles – Epsom salt baths, which’ll set you back a grand total of $3.99 for a 350g packet.
Wedding health and wellness
By choice, Nicole’s been eating a plant-based, caffeine-free (gah) diet for the last two years. But a month out from her wedding, Nicole said she cut out refined sugars, alcohol and whole grains. What was left? Plant-based protein (nuts, seeds, chickpeas, soybeans, lentils, legumes and leafy green veggies), other veggies, complex carbs (sweet potatoes and pumpkin), fruit and natural fats.
She also saw a naturopath who mixed her personalised Chinese herbal tonics (this can cost upwards of $200 for the appointment plus the cost of the supplements), and started taking Sleep Inner Beauty Powder by The Beauty Chef ($77.27 for 100g) for glowing skin.
The secret to perfect wedding day hair? Get it cut two weeks out, Nicole said. But only if you bloody trust your stylist.
After her trial with hairstylist Daren Borthwick, he suggested she get a fresh cut and layer to better frame her face. Ordinarily, you wouldn’t want to touch the shape of your hair so close to your wedding day, but if you’d trust your hairdresser with your life, allow them to proceed with caution.
On the day, Daren “literally tied my hair into a knot and left some of the end out of the bottom for this imperfect look,” Nicole told Vogue.
Speaking of wedding hair, MMOL discuss whether Meghan Markle will keep her single grey hair for the royal wedding. Yes, really. Post continues after audio.
Nicole chose an eye lash lift over extensions.
Lash lifts involve placing a curler and applying a perm-like solution to your lashes to give them a perfect curl that’s not too over-the-top for people with longer lashes, beauty therapist Lauren Marks from A World of Beauty told Mamamia.
The difference between a lash lift and a set of extensions is there’s no aftercare. As lash lifts enhance your natural lashes, you don’t need to let any glue dry or comb them into place with a spoolie.
Nicole gets her lash lifts done at Smooth Waxing in Bondi, but the $55 to $110 treatment is available at most good beauty salons.
Wedding teeth treatments
The first thing Nicole said she wanted to get done after she got engaged in 2015 were her teeth which had “always been overcrowded” on the bottom.
She had Invisalign fitted for six months, which according to the manufacturer can cost anywhere between $3500 and $7000. However, she said she sped up the process by wearing an AcceleDent vibrating guard for 20 minutes each day to make her teeth move faster. The AcceleDent device costs approximately $1,345.
Nicole also whitened her teeth through the Philips Zoom in-chair treatment at her dentist. She said it was “expensive, painful and I had sensitivity for days”, but great if you’re short on time because the results are instantaneous. The treatment takes around 1.5 hours, lasts for up to three years and costs between $500 and $2000.
Wedding day makeup
Victoria Baron painted Nicole’s face on her wedding day armed with the brief of “luminous, dewy and fresh skin”. And no mascara or eyeliner, just individual fake lashes to accentuate her eye shape, because she knew she’d “be crying a lot”.
The CHANEL Australia Makeup Artist used brands including Chanel (of course), Giorgio Armani, Mecca Cosmetica, Nars and Dior to complete her look. Nicole listed the exact shades and products she wore on her wedding day in her Into The Gloss piece.
After all that – rough calculations suggest Nicole’s wedding prep cost upwards of $10,000 – she doesn’t pretend all that maintenance was a breeze. Or cheap.
“I’ll be honest with you: It’s a lot of work. It’s tedious. It’s expensive. It’s a commitment,” she wrote.
“For once, I didn’t feel guilty for making the time to work out or disappearing for hours to get my hair done. It’s the one time in your life that you feel like you’re ‘allowed’ to put yourself first, and it’s so, so fun.
“But I don’t have kids just yet and I feel lucky to be self-employed, which made it doable. I also understand if my wedding prep isn’t for you or your schedule. But that said, I can’t recommend it enough to take some time to spoil yourself.”
How much money would you be willing to spend on yourself for your wedding? Do you think it’s worth it?