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How to not stress if your period is due on your wedding day

chelsea paris email from amanda ferreri

Blee. It’s not the most glamorous subject, let’s be honest. But stressing about the decorators being a last-minute uninvited guest at the wedding was a popular concern amongst the web readers back during my magazine years so I thought it was worth writing a post about the bridal blob.

Now the sensible me says that if you’re not normally prone to leakage, why would wearing a white dress suddenly make you more susceptible. However, I do get that it’s a pain (in more ways than one) and the wedding night may not be able to go off with the ‘bang’ you were both hoping for. * coughs *

If you want to delay the blob, there are ways to do that – I’m talking birth control pills for instance. Starting them or switching up your routine. A visit to your doc will explain what to do and more importantly in my little white book, what side effects you could expect (weight gain is one so be warned!) I remember that some brides took the view of ‘We’ve got a lifetime together, what’s one night? Let’s just get mashed instead.” Absolutely nothing wrong with that. Make the most of the free bar, the fact that everyone you love most in the world is in the same room and hopefully, the DJ is playing Debarge. And enjoy your wedding!

What bothers me most about having mean old Aunt Flo at the wedding is the way ‘she’ can make you feel. You know, such beauties as painful boobs, exhaustion, bloating, a bridezilla temper and *shudders* acne.

Now because I like pretty things and because I believe we all deserve a treat at that time of the month, I love how the Pink Parcel delivery service combines your tampon requirements with treats (you can get really lucky with nail varnish and chocolate!) They also happen to be bursting with experts who know all about what’s going on in our bodies before and during our period, and what we can do about it. So I put my moon miseries to them….

On not-so-radiant skin

‘Hormones are up and down just before your period, causing your skin to look its worst,’ says Pink Parcel‘s resident dermatologist, Debbie Palmer. “A decrease in oestrogen along with a surge in progesterone and testosterone can cause pores to become clogged with sebum.’ Your best course of action is to cleanse thoroughly, exfoliate gently (especially around your chin area) and keep your skin moisturised. Use products that target acne like Clinique’s Anti-Blemish Solutions range. And help feed your way to clearer skin by eating zinc-rich foods like meat, shellfish, yoghurt and nuts.

On beating the bloat

According to Pink Parcel’s fitness expert (and Master Trainer at 1Rebel) Esmee Gummer, swimming is a great way to sooth a swollen tummy. Let’s hope you’ve booked into a spa hotel to get wedding ready! She says, ‘Bloating is horrid when you’re on your period because it makes you feel worse than you actually are. Swimming is a low impact exercise and is naturally relaxing.’ Chomp on a banana too – the potassium will help banish water retention. As for tender boobs, going caffeine free is Esmee’s advice. Apparently it should make things way more comfortable in that department.

On a bridezilla-bad temper

Mood swings are totally normal and can begin up to eleven days before the blob arrives. Luckily they often disappear in a puff of smoke as soon as your period comes. No surprises to know it’s all about hormones again. Oestrogen to be exact. Your body is preparing for pregnancy, then along comes your period to send it’s hopes crashing to the nearest sanitary towel. Hello PMS by way of mood swings, cramps, headaches and cravings. Stress doesn’t help either. Did someone mention a wedding? Foodie ways to beat your bad mood include diary, brown rice, flaxseeds, sprouts (sorry) and cranberries. You could also try dandelion tea and St John’s Wort. And spritz on an uplifting fragrance too. Something citrusy should lift your mood.

On exhaustion

It’s back to the dinner table to try and stop you from feeling so drained. Instead of three big meals, eat several smaller ones to keep your energy at a constant level throughout the day. You may be craving sweets, sugary drinks and alcohol* but try to swap them for more protein-rich foods instead. Keep moving too – fingers crossed again for good tunes at the reception – because sitting around will only make you feel more rubbish.
*It’s your wedding furcrissakes. Don’t go bonkers but don’t deny yourself some champers!

I hope this advice helps if having your period before or on your wedding day has been playing on your mind. It really doesn’t have to mean curtains to you having fun. Obviously, check you’ve got a stash of pads and tampons in your emergency bag and make it a MOH duty to help you hold your dress out of the way when you need to go to the loo. I’ve always remembered one reader’s tip from yonks ago: to go to the loo facing the back of the toilet so that your dress is falling off to the floor instead of crunched up against the seat. I haven’t tried it myself but thought I’d mention it.

Oh, and I just got sent a press release from Carol Smillie – she of Changing Rooms fame back in the 90s (showing my age?) She’s ‘unveiled’ DairyDoll, a range of protective knickers that come with a waterproof layer, especially for women who worry about heavy periods. Great timing! They’re available in white but if you’re struggling with your ‘something blue’ …  Bingo!

So has this icky subject been worrying you? Any thoughts on the post or more tips, please comment below. I love to hear from you…

Sarah x

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  • Omg – I’m due on just before my period is due so I’m gonna get the rage just at the worst time possible!!!! Thanks for making me realise. I’ll put out a warning!!!!!!

    3 years ago : Dionne
  • Oh please god no! My period takes me by surprise every month. It comes at any time of day with no warning. I’d want to be shot (by a gun not a camera!)

    4 years ago : Dbaxter
  • This is the WORST thing that could happen to me. I truly turn into the Incredible Sulk during my period. xx

    5 years ago : sherbertpip
  • Actually thank you for this. It’s just occurred to me that my period is due the day of my wedding!!!!!!

    5 years ago : Trogers
  • So… tampon, pad and a pair of carol smilie’s pants! That should stop the “oh I think you’ve sat on a raspberry” embarrassment. Great idea for a post. Macy x

    5 years ago : Mjones
  • Thanks for the post. My period lasts around 12 days. That’d cross my wedding and honeymoon. I’ve joined an online tracker to pin down my cycle so I can work out if I’m doomed! Isabelle Rankin

    5 years ago : Rankiniz
  • Here! Here!🥂Don’t let the blob ruin your big day🥂X tasha

    5 years ago : TAsha
  • PMS and all the crap that comes with it? My advice is to drink through it. You only get married once. Cheers! 🥂🥂🥂🥂🍾x boozybonnie

    5 years ago : Boozybonnie
  • Hi there. I had a coil fitted prior to my 3 week holiday to Tobago. I feel crap before and during my period plus I’m really heavy. TMI? Anyway, whilst I’m completely cramp-free now I have spotting all the time. I couldn’t wear my wedding dress without a pad. Just to be sure I’m going for a thicker maternity pad. So glamorous eh? My point for your readers though was don’t have a coil fitted presuming it’ll be an end to your periods. At least for me that’s definitely not the case. Susanne xo

    5 years ago : Susiesoo
  • Dr Akbar Consultant, Gastroenterologist at St Mark’s Hospital, says: “Bloating can be a sign of IBS, IBD, a food intolerance or food allergy, or a general infection. By keeping hydrated and drinking large amounts of water, you can potentially reduce these problems because dehydration and electrolyte imbalances can stop digestion and cause your body to hold on to excess water. If you eat too fast you inhale air, which can cause bloating and result in excess gas. In addition, PMS makes you susceptible to constipation and water retention- bloating increases as ovulation takes place as more fluids and blood builds up. Something else to try to reduce bloating is decreasing your carbohydrate and dairy intake. This may help with bloating as many people’s digestive systems can’t break down lactose or gluten.”

    5 years ago : Dr Akbar
  • Thank you for writing about this icky subject. It’s been on my mind for sure. I wanted to recommend Floradix to help with exhaustion. It’s got iron in it. Fay o’dowd xx

    5 years ago : Fay