Krème Chats with Bride Nkechi Bakare, whose beautiful traditional wedding took place in December 2016. Two words describe Nkechi's approach to skincare - simplicity and natural. Thank you so much Nkechi Bakare for sharing your special day.
Tell us a little about yourself
My name is Nkechi Bakare, I am an art adviser. I work with private collectors, artist, dealers, and private organizations to build their collection of art. So, I buy and sell art for people. How long was it between your engagement and your wedding? 10 months. I got engaged in February 14, 2016 and the traditional wedding was in December 2016. The church blessing will be in May 2017. How stressful was the process? It was stressful trying to juggle life and wedding planning. My job involves a lot of travelling; I have clients that are based in the United States and Europe, so I spend a lot of time in those locations. Last year, especially, I was a nomad. I had to lean on my mum for help with most of the preparation because I am based in Kampala Uganda at the moment. There were definitely stressful parts, but overall it ended up being really fun.
What was your skincare routine before engagement?
I have combination skin, and I am a firm believer in cleansing your skin properly. In the morning, I wash my face with Rissa Naturals (a natural skincare line I discovered in Kampala, everything is handmade by the lady here in Uganda) Activated charcoal soap with bentonite clay. Then I use a good SPF moisturizer; right now, I'm using Lancôme bienfait multi-vital sunscreen cream in SPF 30. I actually prefer a higher SPF, but that is what I had at that moment. At night, I wash again with the activated charcoal soap, and do a second wash with Murad AHA/BHA exfoliating cleanser. I love this face wash. I think it's made a difference to the smoothness of my skin. It also helps prepare my skin for my products I use following cleansing. This summer I started using Korres wild rose oil with vitamin C, and I am very happy with the product. I used to use Clinique smart serum but I wanted to switch to something more natural and this is gentle on my skin and makes my skin glow. I follow up with Lancôme Bienfait multi-vital night moisturizing cream, which locks in moisture. I noticed my skin was getting dry from long haul flights and the recycled air on airplanes and this has helped soothe all dryness. For treatments, I try to do natural homemade face masks as often as I can. I use green clay masks, which help deep clean my skin. I also love papaya on my skin. In the morning when I'm cutting some up for breakfast, I like to rub a bit on my skin and wash it off after 15 mins I find it exfoliating and takes off dead skin cells.
Did you change your skincare routine before your wedding?
I didn’t change my skincare routine much. I pretty much stuck to my regular routine. For me, I feel what you put in is just as important as what you apply, so I made sure I ate a lot of vegetables, juices and most importantly stayed away from dairy. I found out that dairy breaks me out, so as much I love dairy I started being a lot more cautious towards my wedding because the last thing I wanted was a spot in the middle of my forehead (laughs).
As for facials, I really wanted to go for facials regularly, but I couldn’t with my hectic travel schedule. There is skincare therapist in London that I would pop in to see in between travels, and unfortunately, I was only able to see her three times in the whole year because I wasn’t stable. Her facials are really good; she performed a deep cleansing facial and microcurrent which I really loved. So, for me, it was mainly being conscious of what I ate and sticking with my skincare routine.
Most memorable moment of your day
The actual ceremony was memorable for me. The moment you first see your husband, you are handed over to your husband, you look into each other’s eyes, and you take our vows; it’s a special moment.
What song did you have your first dance to and why did you choose that song?
(Laughs) So when we came out we had them play Duro by Teckno. It’s an upbeat song, and the words were nice as well. When we were on the dance floor I choose Ada Ada by Flavour. I choose the songs, and wore different traditional outfits because I am multi-cultural; I am Igbo, Delta and Yoruba. It was important for my wedding to reflect that diversity. I am also the Ada (in the Igbo culture “Ada” means first girl/daughter) of my family, and I love the song. (laughs)
One wedding vendor that made your day
They were all great. I would recommend Banke Meshida (makeup artist). I was quite pleased with her work. She makes you look so pretty, and she enhances your beauty. She is very professional, she is on time, very lovely, and the makeup does not budge (not even a lash).
I would also recommend my photographer Dola (she is on Instagram as @dolaposh). I love her aesthetic; she takes really natural, soft pictures with no flash, and keeps you looking natural. I was really happy with her work.
Being a veteran bride, what skincare tips can you share to newly engaged or brides-to-be?
For skincare, keep your skin clean, moisturize and wear SPF, especially for brides who live in Africa. Finally, make sure you eat healthy, incorporate fruits, vegetables and water into your diet because what you eat shows on your skin.
Looking back now, if you could share one wedding day advice to our brides-to-be, what would it be?
Stay Calm! There is nothing you can do about what is going wrong at that moment. Let someone else handle it. Relax on that day. Be in the moment and enjoy the day with your partner.