Rochelle Rao takes us behind the scenes of her beach wedding
Rochelle Rao is hitched. And, boy! Did she look like a dream in that sweeping gown by Gavin Miguel. After catapulting to fame with Bigg Boss back in 2015 and let’s not forget bagging the Miss India International title a few years earlier, this Chennai lass has become hot property both on the ramp and on the telly. But once a Chennai girl, always a Chennai girl, she assures us, “That’s why I chose Mahabalipuram for the wedding!” Fresh off her honeymoon with new hubby Keith Sequeira, we catch with up Rochelle over the phone while on a stopover at the Singapore airport — and get chatting about how to prep for a wedding — body, mind and soul.
In the month counting down to the wedding, this couple went on a juicing diet together — sampling a rainbow of concoctions each week. “Keith is really good at this stuff, so he would usually just hand me a glass and I would drink it,” the newly wed shares with a laugh. Apart from cold-pressed vegetables like beetroots and carrots, healthy carbs like sweet potato and cauliflower were also part of the menu.
Ice ice baby
For her skin, Rochelle prefers to go natural and instead of branded products, opts for face masks rich in tumeric and yoghurt, ice treatments to tighten her pores (three times a day) and aloe vera. “I did do a full body skin polish a couple of times before the wedding for exfoliation all over,” she tells us.
The best decision I made before my wedding was to take up MMA. Apart from getting fit and burning calories, it was a massive stressbuster in the run up to my big day! — Rochelle Rao
School of marriage
Not restricting wedding prep to merely looking good, Keith and Rochelle both underwent a six-week course at their church, covering a structured programme on communication, love languages, how to handle money as a couple and the big unasked questions that often pop up a few years into a marriage. “It was quite intensive and we went home with homework every day,” the 29-year-old recalls. “One thing I remember learning from these sessions was not to impose my expectations on my partner, and in times of conflict, remembering — he’s on my side,” she shares, in a vulnerable moment.
Three tips for brides-to-be
• Share the load: If your aunty wants to help out — give her something to do!
• Treat it like any other day: Meet your friends, walk around the hotel, pre-wedding butterflies won’t be as pronounced if you choose not to isolate yourself in a dressing room.
• Find a stressbuster: Four months before her wedding, Rochelle started Mixed Martial Arts and apart from burning calories, it helped her shake off building pressure ahead of the wedding.
Rochelle paired her lace gown with a blue topaz pendant gifted by her brother David Rao. “Topaz is my birthstone and his is blue topaz, so he told me that was my ‘something blue’,” she says with a smile. Given that Rochelle’s favourite accessory is a pair of earrings, we’ve chosen a stunning pair of 18K gold earrings with the stone from Ippolita. Rs 3,19,399.
Barefoot on the beach
By now you’ve possibly heard the term ‘fairytale wedding’ used a few times to describe Rochelle’s wedding ceremony on the beach. The gorgeous bride might have one-upped Cinderella though, because instead of losing (read: opting out of) one shoe, she decided to do away with both — and walked down the aisle barefoot. What can we say, except, are there any shoes more comfortable than no shoes?
Make up: D-day & the case of the missing deo
In Rochelle’s makeup bag, you’re likely to find L'Oréal Volume Million Lashes Mascara, Urban Decay Naked eye shadow palette, Anastasia contour and highlight palette, Clinique Chubby Stick and an eye lash curler. Funnily enough, she recalls, on the day of the wedding, “I realised I had all my essentials, but the one thing I was missing was a deodrant. I went around asking everybody for one, and they kept handing me perfume (which doesn’t serve the same purpose). Eventually, my sister came to the rescue,” she remembers with a laugh.