21 Sep 2023 | by Leonard Miller, MD, FACS, FRCS

Now that we are once again attending in-person gatherings, I am getting more inquiries about the best treatment options for achieving optimum skin before a big event. This is something that I take very seriously. Photographs from a wedding, birthday, or reunion live on in perpetuity so it’s vital for you to look and feel fantastic on your big day. Some patients even like to come see me before starting a new job. I have many tools in my arsenal for cleaning up skin texture issues such as brown spots or fine lines and for improving skin tone in order to create the kind of glowing skin that radiates health and happiness. The right option for you will depend on your individual needs, but most patients will require a combination of treatments. For this reason, it is important to discuss the timeline for getting skin event ready.

Achieving optimal skin before a big event could take 6 months of preparation.

Big Event Skin Countdown

Any aesthetic procedure requires some degree of recovery. While you may be able to walk out of the office after a Botox® treatment and immediately return to your normal activities, it still takes two weeks for your results to manifest. Lasers, one of my areas of expertise as well as one of the most versatile tools in my toolbox, typically require a series of sessions, spaced weeks apart, in order to achieve the smooth glow that we both want. So, ideally, I recommend that you schedule a consultation 6 months to a year prior to your event so that we can determine:

  • How you want your skin to look
  • Best procedures for achieving your goals
  • Downtime required for recovery

My goal is to create a precise map and calendar for getting your skin in tip top shape. In my experience personally and as a Board-Certified cosmetic dermatologist, I know that when your skin looks good, you feel better — more relaxed, comfortable and confident. This, in turn, will shine through in your photographs which is exactly what we want.

Best Treatment Options for Getting Skin Event Ready

The best treatment options for getting your skin ready for a big event typically fall into three categories:

  • Medical grade skincare
  • Lasers
  • Injectables

Creating the right recipe for you is always going to depend on your individual needs. During your initial consultation, I will listen closely to what bothers you about your skin. I will inquire into your family history, medical history, any prior procedures you may have had as well as how you recovered, and the look you are hoping to achieve on your big day. If you are someone who prefers a more natural look, for example, this places more emphasis on the skin and needs to be taken into consideration.

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Medical Grade Skincare

Medical grade skincare is something that I recommend for every patient. The benefits are far-reaching, and often overlooked. Dull skin texture is one of those things that you don’t always realize is a problem until it improves. Issues such as:

  • Crepey skin texture
  • Brown spots
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Fines lines & wrinkles
  • Redness
  • Broken blood vessels

These can all contribute to a dull complexion, making you look and feel tired even when well rested.

Medical grade skincare, which is skincare that must be sold by a medical professional such as myself and whose effectiveness has been researched and proven in numerous studies, is more potent than anything you can buy over-the-counter (OTC). It has the power to radically improve your skin texture, but the benefits will take time — typically 3-4 months. Although every patient’s regime is unique, there are two products that I recommend for everyone:

  • Retinoid
  • Sunscreen

The latter is critical as it makes no sense to do all this work to get your skin smooth and glowing only to mar the effect with more sun spots!

Laser Procedures for Event Ready Skin

Laser procedures are one of my go-to treatments for getting your skin ready for a big event because there is a laser for basically any skin issue. The Excel V is my laser of choice for anything red such as rosacea or broken blood vessels. It is extremely effective but can take 4-6 monthly treatments to achieve your final result. Fraxel is great for improving skin texture issues, and scars as well as sun damage. The former two will probably require around 5 monthly treatments while the later may only take 1-2. However, the recovery from any Fraxel treatment is about 5 days of downtime.

Some patients can not tolerate downtime either because of their personality or their lifestyle. For them, I will recommend Clear + Brilliant. It takes more time and sessions to deliver a result than Fraxel, but requires no downtime. I also always remind patients not to forget about the backs of the hands and the chest. The latter can be especially important for brides who are wearing strapless wedding dresses.


Last, but not least on my getting your skin event ready checklist, is injectables. Botox® and fillers are a fantastic way to rejuvenate the face as well as the backs of the hands. I will also often use hyperdiluted Radiesse® to address crepey skin texture on the chest, arms, thighs, and knees. While injectables don’t require “downtime”, this does not mean that we want to take chances with your big day. I like to start with injectables at least 4-6 weeks before your event. This way, we can make subtle improvements, allow them to set completely, which takes about 2 weeks, and then make additional corrections if necessary. Ideally, I want to do a “trial run” of your injectables regime before your big event treatment. This way, you can decide whether you would like more or less movement. Are you ok with your crow’s feet showing in photos or would you prefer for that area to be completely smooth? My job is to help you figure out and achieve your ideal skin so that you can just relax on your big day and enjoy.

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To find out more medical grade skincare, injectables, and lasers to get your skin ready for an event at the Boston Center for Plastic Surgery, contact us today or call (617) 735- 8735 to schedule a consultation.

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