A year on from the Royal Wedding, when Carole Middleton’s Wedding outfit came under almost as much media scrutiny as Kate’s, new research by mature online retailer isme.com reveals the extreme lengths mothers all over the country go to in order to look perfect on their son or daughter’s big day.
According to a survey of 1,000 women, it’s no longer just the bride who feels under pressure – with the staggering finding that 1 in 10 Wedding mothers would consider cosmetic surgery such as Botox, a tummy tuck or a boob job for the big day. It’s therefore perhaps no surprise that a third of British women say they’ve attended a Wedding in recent years where a mother of the bride or groom has even broken the golden rule and tried to upstage the bride herself.
While most women don’t have to face the gaze of the British public and glare of the world media, the equally intimidating eyeing-up, Gossip amongst guests and the ‘other mother’ drives the pressure to look perfect a little too far.
In Fact, nearly half are convinced guests would be talking about which of the two mums had pulled off the best look – with two-thirds saying they would attempt to find out in advance exactly what the ‘other mother’ was planning on wearing and one in four saying they would seek external advice on their look in order not to be upstaged.
The pursuit of perfection takes its toll on the purse strings too, as mothers of the bride or groom will spend an average of £278 on their wedding outfit this year – and a significant number will even shell out between £500-£1000. And that’s just one element of the expense and effort they would consider for the big day. For the first time ever, isme.com has compiled a list of the top expenditures undertaken by British wedding mothers.
Wedding mothers’ top expenditures:
- Specialist diet advice – 61 per cent
- “Back-up” outfit in case they change their mind on the big day – 26 per cent
- Join a gym or exercise group – 23 per cent
- Spa day / weekend – 21 per cent
- Tanning salon visit – 20 per cent
- Hire a fashion stylist – 10 per cent
- Cosmetic surgery (Botox, tummy tuck, boob job) – 9 per cent
In order to avoid outrageous expense, extreme body changes and even reducing the bride to tears Julie Donnelly, Head of Buying at isme’s specialist 50+ brand Savoir, urges mothers to emulate Carole Middleton’s elegant understatement, and has prepared essential top tips in advance of the wedding season:
- Its all about the fit: If you are larger on the top compared to the bottom half or vice versa, go for separates. Fit and flare shape to disguise big hips. When in doubt, remember, the tunic style flatters most body shapes.
- The most important rule: buy the right size. Only the bride loses weight for the big day
- Aim to be the second most fabulous lady there. Never try to outshine the Bride. You don’t want a Pippa moment!
- Sexy is not a good look for a wedding. Elegant and confident is a much better look what ever your age
- Three nevers: never too tight, never too short and never, ever, wear jeans - unless it’s a country and western themed wedding
- Wear a hat, but if you’re not confident or comfortable with that, a fascinator or a pretty hair slide will suffice
- French women dress from the inside out… what that means is they choose the correct and right size underwear for their outfit. Trust me (as an ex-lingerie buyer) it will take pounds off!
- Dress for the venue: if in a fancy hotel or restaurant go for a slightly more tailored dressy look (avoid black or navy, you may look as if you have just popped in from the office). Choose a pastel, or if you have a strong personality go for one of the amazing bright colours that are popular this season
- If you want to go for a safer option choose a neutral colour but accessorise with strong colours for your shoes and bag
- Remember, at weddings a large chunk of time is spent standing around outside waiting for the photos, so make sure you have a Pashmina or wrap with you. Avoid very high heels as you will sink into the grass or sand
- Don’t forget your brolly – if it’s in the UK don’t take any chances. No mother of the bride or groom wants their day ruined by going for the ‘drowned’ look thanks to a sudden downpour
A wedding is not the time to try a new hairstyle, new make up style, a completely new dress style. To be confident you need to be comfortable