In the run up to the main event, the combination of couple decisions, family politics and so much wedmin is bound to leave even the most organised bride-to-be feeling a little frayed around the edges.
And this just won’t do: after all, it’s essential that you’re at your most radiant on the big day.
Luckily, we have the hotlist of the ultimate regional make-up, hair, spa and jewellery businesses with the talents, expertise and passion to make you – and your bride-tribe babes – look and feel like a million dollars, from pre-nuptial pampering hen hangs to the reception’s very last dance.
So, what are you waiting for? Ready, set, glow!
The Best Make-Up Artists
Amanda Bell MUA
With a career that has seen her make over Hollywood starlets such as Sienna Miller, Naomie Harris and Jessica Biel, brides can rest assured that they’re safe in the hands of award-winning make-up artist Amanda Bell MUA.
After years spent in the capital honing her high-fashion techniques and radiance-giving talents, she returned to her roots in the north east to open her own studio.
Amanda especially loves working with you ladies in white, saying “it’s an honour to be part of someone’s inner circle on the most important day of their lives.”
And with more than 20 years’ experience, it goes without saying that you’ll look your very best for your own red-carpet entrance.
Julian West Makeup
Established by dynamic sister duo Alison and Emily, North Yorkshire salon Julian West Makeup is renowned not only for providing its bridal clients with that all-important flawless finish, but with an empowering beauty experience.
So, whether you crave laminated brows that will last through the honeymoon, or a pre-wedding mani date with your maids, you can be sure that this prettifying pair will have you covered for the Miss to Mrs journey.
And when it comes to the big-day glam sesh, they’ll follow your lead to create a personalised look, so you can sashay down the aisle like the star you are.
As Emily says: “It’s all about the confidence!”
Based in Darlington, Jo Leversuch’s masterful make-up brushstrokes have made it onto Balmain runway models and the pages of Italian Vogue.
Now, she’s helping lucky north-east brides-to-be get ready for their wedding-album close ups.
Jo’s spectacular service includes a trial six to eight weeks prior to the big day, where you can discuss the dress, venue and ideas, so you can create a make-up look to complement your celebration and natural beauty.
Planning to put your own artistry to the test on the special day? Her one-on-one wedding make-up lessons will help you chose the right products and learn to apply them like a pro.
The Best Hair Stylists
Tina Elliott Hairstyling
With more than 25 years of tress-taming under her belt, Newcastle-based wedding-hair specialist Tina Elliott Hairstyling has honed her second-to-none bridal credentials at fashion shoots (including four covers for yours truly), wedding fairs and countless big days.
From ethereal waves, boho braids and flower crowns to chic chignons, textural updos and sleek side-ponies, her inspirational styling talents know no limits.
And with gushing testimonials from a host of happy clients, it’s clear that Tina offers far more than a great hair day: reassuring, calm and reliable, she knows exactly how to put a nervous bride-to-be at ease, from the trial session to the morning of the wedding.
Aqua the Salon
Started by a Vidal Sassoon-trained super-stylist (Stewart) and a colour technician extraordinaire (Gareth), Aqua the Salon in Cumbria offers an all-round service that will have your locks looking grand-entrance ready, from the countdown prep of cuts, colour and treatments in the salon to the flawlessly coiffed final look captured in your big-day photos.
At your pre-wedding consultation, you can trial a number of different styles to find what suits you and your dress to perfection.
Plus, they’ll bring their state-of-the-art styling tools and premium haircare products to the venue so you can have the A-list bride experience.
Both wedding and hair obsessed, Unity Rhodes is in the right business, having translated her twin passions and styling skills into a career that encompasses a home salon, Oh.Hello, and a bespoke bridal service.
With a gift for creating effortless, modern lock looks, she prides herself on collaborating with clients, usually reaching a consensus on big-day dos through a process of sharing ideas and mutual brainstorming.
The approach of encouraging her brides to “stay true to themselves” has resulted in a host of Insta-perfect styles that are impossible not to double tap, from textural braids and loose plaits to soft tendrils and dreamy curls.
The Best Spas
Nestled on the outskirts of Durham, four-star spa hotel Ramside Hall has the ultimate blend of traditional period features, first-class service and cutting-edge facilities: perfect for pre-wedding indulgence.
With five pools – including one of the UK’s largest hydrotherapy baths – a beautiful spa garden, four thermal suites and a state-of-the-art gym, the hotel’s spa also offers an exhaustive menu of ESPA and Nature Bissé treatments.
We recommend you check into one of the luxury treehouse suites for a high-end hen you’ll never forget: champagne toasts in the balcony’s sunken hot tub, spoiling massages and a fine-dining experience at Ramside’s elegant Fusion restaurant.
With luxury log cabin accommodation, a wellness programme and a tranquil country spa, North Yorkshire retreat Whinstone View is the very definition of wholesome self-care.
A perfect spot for a couple’s break or bridesmaid getaway, you can be sure that the fresh air of the heathery moors, cosy Scandi-chic lodges, yoga classes and all-natural treatments will help you achieve complete zen.
Soul nourished, you can move on to a full-body makeover: from Dermaquest skin peels and Decleor massages to Jessica manicures and St Tropez spray tans, you’ll leave here flawless from the inside out.
And because it’s all about balance, you simply can’t miss out on the bistro’s delicious, hearty fare.
If you have lady-of-the-manor aspirations – and if you don’t, why not? – a visit to Tees Valley country estate Wynyard Hall is a pre-wedding essential.
Whether you choose to host your soirée here, check in for a lovers’ retreat or book a bride-tribe break, this Victorian country houses’ idyllic boathouse spa – which only allows 10 guests at a time – is serious pamper goals.
With a spa menu covering everything from hot-stone massages, purifying mud scrubs and aromatherapy wraps to power cleanses, eye treatments and soothing facials, pure bliss is guaranteed.
Meanwhile, the salon can take care of all the beautifying extras, such as waxing, tanning and pedicures.
End your dreamy session by enjoying the lakeside views from one of the outdoor hot tubs.
The Best Jewellers
The Bobby Pin
Whatever your bridal identity, award-winning wedding accessories label The Bobby Pin has your big-day dazzle covered.
Going boho? Try a hair vine embellished with golden leaves and crystal flowers.
Fancy a fairytale princess feel? Opt for a delicate filigree necklace.
Or maybe you want to go for a thoroughly modern almost-married vibe? Push the envelope with a statement pearl headband, of-the-moment celestial-themed earrings or a subtle jewel-studded belt to add interest to a sleek slip dress.
The brand’s contemporary, ultra-feminine designs are ideal for laidback babes who want to add a touch of personality to their bridal attire.
Ruby & Oscar
Full of modern sophistication, Ruby & Oscar’s wedding jewellery collection offers a scintillating selection of earrings, necklaces, bracelets and rings to complement a subtly chic bridal look.
With a plethora of diamond, blue topaz, ruby, green amethyst, tanzanite and iridescent opal jewels in faceted and cabochon settings, these precious pieces would add serious sparkle, while the current collection’s ultra-fresh, minimalist take on classic big-day pearls is ideal for those of you wanting tradition with a twist.
Matching sets are also available, as well as beautiful keepsake gems for you to gift your bridesmaids and mother with on the wedding morning.
Sarah Vuong Bridal Jewellery
Billed as your virtual maid of honour, Sarah Vuong Bridal Jewellery aims to provide brides and their tribes with sentimental jewellery that will last the test of time.
Made from precious metals, the pieces won’t tarnish, meaning you’ll have a touching memento that can be worn for many more occasions.
Aware that aisle style is a very personal thing, the designer has created capsule ranges for six key wedding-day looks: Romantic is all about pearls and crystals, while Elegant comprises showstopping earrings and combs, and Bohemian boasts delicate chain headdresses and lariat pendants.
Then, there’s Classic with understated silver designs, Modern’s subtle hoops and vintage’s glam faceted jewels and hair combs.
Whatever your vibe, Sarah has jewellery to reflect it.