Saturday, March 16, 2013

My Prom

This is where I'm going to post a few blogs about my own prom process. This year I'll be going to my Senior Ball, which is a little bit different from Junior Prom, which we just call Prom. I think it's cute how we call it a Senior Ball, because it makes me feel like a princess. 

I think I'll Christen this tag with a post about Prom last year. Stay tuned! 

Prom Night Expectations

First off, I'd like to apologize for my absence. I do this thing where I'm completely invested in something for about a week, and then I'm over it, basically. That's sorta what happened here. 

As the title says, this post will be about what to expect on prom night. This mostly has to do with the social part of it. 

First off, there seems to be this expectation around prom night as a night where you can get drunk and have sex or whatever. I'd be a huge hypocrite if I were gonna pull the "Don't have sex or do drugs or drink on your prom night!" talk out of my ass... So I'm just gonna say, don't do anything you're gonna seriously regret, or something that'll change your life for the worst. 

Obviously, if you plan to have sex on prom night (with your consenting partner, of course), don't be stupid. Make sure you have a condom, and if you're able to, go on birth control. Keep in mind when you're asking/accepting a potential date to prom what your expectations are. If you're going as friends, make sure that it's known between you two that you're going as friends. Otherwise, maybe see how far your relationship develops with your date until prom night and figure out what you're ready for come prom night. Don't fall under the 'sex on prom night' cliche unless you really want to. 

Secondly, you're probably thinking of having a non-sober prom night. I'd be a complete hypocrite if I were to forbid you from drinking on prom night. All I have to say on the matter is, don't do anything stupid and be responsible. Do it with people you really trust and you know will take care of you if you decide to drink. Don't drink and drive or wander away from your after party. 

I hope this helped out a little, and I hope this post was realistic enough, because I always read about what to expect on prom night and how people are so against drinking and sex. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Dress

Finding the perfect dress can be the best and worst part of prom. 
The best part is that you get to feel like a princess. Dress shopping is the best. Trying on dresses with your friends is the best way to bond with your girls before prom, and you know that their opinions matter because, well, they're your friends! They'll help you find the best dress to suit you. 
With dress shopping comes incredible stress, though. The worst feeling is finding the perfect dress and realizing that it's out of your price range, or finding an awesome dress that a friend of yours wants for herself, too. But there are solutions to both of those prom-blems (haha, get it? Man, am I witty.), and I'm gonna help you with any other dress-related problems that get thrown your way. 

Here are some links! 
Dress Troubles

Prom Checklist

Here's a super detailed list of the things you have to keep in check to keep prom running smoothly. Having a time frame for everything means less stress and you don't have to worry about everything at once. 

5 Months Before Prom 

  • If you're looking to get into shape or tone up for prom, start exercising and eating healthy now. 

3 Months Before Prom 

  • Decide on a budget and how much money you want to spend, and how much your parents are willing to contribute. Don't assume they'll just take care of everything. Here are some examples on what you may or may not be spending money on 
    • Dress 
    • Shoes
    • Makeup 
    • Hair appointment
    • Nails 
    • Prom tickets 
    • Dinner reservations
    • Limo 
    • Boutonniere for your date 
    • Jewelry 
      • Sidenote: My Junior Prom was quite cheap for me. I had gotten my dress a year before when dresses went on sale post-prom, I got my shoes on sale, I did my own makeup, did my own hair, did my own nails, so all I really had to pay for was the limo, jewelry, tickets, and dinner. I didn't have a date so I didn't spend money on a boutonniere. 
  • Start saving money. Look for a job that you can get a lot of shifts from or do some extra chores and ask for a raise in your allowance if you have one. 
  • Shop for and buy your prom dress. 
  • Get your friends together and make a "foundation" of a prom group, even if not everyone has dates. Make a group on Facebook and add people as necessary. Making a Facebook group is super helpful, because you'll have a place where you can all discuss your plans and ask questions. 
10 Weeks Before Prom 
  • Shop for accessories like jewelry, shoes, a bag. 
  • Start taking extra care of yourself. 
    • If you're growing out your hair or you want it to be extra-healthy, take Biotin supplements. Not only does it promote hair-growth, it helps grow your nails too, and it speeds up your metabolism, too. Also, trim your hair every 3-4 weeks. 
    • Start exfoliating your skin weekly, and start a good facial regimen if you haven't already. Treat yourself to a mask that suits your skin type every week or every other week, depending on the directions. Also, moisturize that skin! 
2 Months Before Prom 
  • Get tickets for you and your date if you have one (if you don't, it's okay! Me and my friend went date-less and we had a hell of a night) 
  • Start looking at hair and makeup looks. If you're doing it yourself, you can look at tutorials and get to practicing! I made the mistake of not thinking about my makeup until the day of... It all went swimmingly, though. All was well. 2 months gives you plenty of time to experiment. 
  • If you're not DIYing your hair and makeup and nails, get ahead of the game and make appointments for the day of the big event. Get your nails done the day before prom so you don't have to worry about smudging them while you're putting on your dress or something. 
  • Make plans with your prom group for before and after prom. Some of these plans include: 
    • Dinner plans. For my Senior Ball, the dinner is going to be provided at the Ball, and for my Junior Prom we had to find a place to eat dinner. 
    • Limo. It's helpful to have a semi-solid number of people you know are in your group. If you're not quite sure, get a limo that will accommodate more people. Last year, my prom group got a Hummer Limo with zebra upholstery inside... Classy. A popular method of travel is a party bus, though. Way more spacious. In our Hummer Limo some of us would have to climb over each other to get to our seats. Not good when you have a short dress and a low cut neckline. 
    • After party--are you going to have a sleepover? Campout? Decide whose house you're going to, etc. 
    • Before prom pictures. Again, whose house is it going to be at? I know a group last year who went to a country club, which is a beautiful alternative if no one in your group has a backyard that can accommodate your group's needs.
  • Discuss these plans with your parents so you don't throw them any curveballs come prom night. My parents were surprisingly liberal with my plans--big score for me. Don't be afraid to push the envelope. If they won't budge on a plan that you really were looking forward to--say like a co-ed sleepover--try to convince them by saying you wanna spend more time making memories with your prom group because your high school years are fleeting... Sniff, sniff. 
1 Month Before Prom 
  • Make all the necessary changes to your prom dress. Have it lengthened or shortened, tailored to fit, etc. 
  • Start whitening your teeth if you want. 
  • Start breaking in your shoes by wearing them with thick socks and casually wear them around the house. They look super cute while you're vacuuming or cleaning your cat's litter box. Sexy. You can also break them in by wearing thick socks and aiming a hair dryer at them. Or walk dramatically up and down your driveway so the pavement will roughen up your soles a bit. It'll be like a catwalk for your neighborhood. 
  • Order a boutonniere from the local florist. 
  • Help your date out and come with him to try on tuxedos. You could do this sooner to avoid any rush, I really don't have much of a clue about helping out your date with stuff... No, I'm not bitter about not having a date last year... Not at all. Sniffle. 
    • Coordinate with your date and have his vest/tie/whatever match the color of your dress. Super cute. 
  • Keep practicing your hair/makeup looks if you're doing it yourself! 
  • Start tanning if you'd like. Good old fashioned sun tanning is the more natural way to go, just make sure to wear some SPF! If you're going the sun-exposure-free route and going spray tanning, remember to EXFOLIATE before so you don't get patchy! And work your way up to a darker shade so it doesn't look like you're suddenly a different race after a day. 
  • Start avoiding salty foods so you don't bloat. 
2 Weeks Before Prom 
  • Finalize and verify your appointments and reservations with the limo and restaurant you're eating at. 
  • Introduce your date to your parents if they don't already know each other. 
  • Finalize your plans with your group. 
  • Put together some stuff that you'll be bringing with you to prom. I brought: 
    • Lip gloss
    • Phone
    • Flossers for after dinner 
    • A stick of gum or a few mints 
    • Tickets 
    • Cash or a credit card 
    • A compact mirror 
    • A sample of the perfume you're going to wear--Sephora gives free samples of the perfumes they carry, just ask! 
1 Week Before Prom 
  • Get together with your girlfriends and have a de-stressing beauty day and bond. Have snacks, watch movies, do facials, all that stuff that you see in movies and on TV that never actually see in real life. 
The Day Before Prom 
  • Get your nails did. 
  • Take your dress out of your closet and stare at it, grinning like an idiot. 
The Night Before Prom 
  • Put an extra topcoat on your nails. 
  • Shave your legs. Treat yourself and buy a nice razor and use the thickest body cream you own to moisturize. 
  • Take a shower. You may or may not want to wash your hair, depending on when you washed it last. Slightly (emphasis on slightly, you don't wanna have greasy roots) dirty hair has better grip on curls and updos, so your style will last longer. 
  • Relax. Meditate or do yoga or something. Go for a walk. Just don't do anything that'll make you sore tomorrow. 
  • Get a lot of sleep. At least 8 hours. Make up for all that sleep you lost from the school year. 
The Day of Prom
  • You made it! You didn't die from any of the stress that you probably brought on yourself! 
  • Take another shower, you were probably sweating yesterday from all the nerves. Just kidding. But yeah, shower. 
  • Go to all your appointments if you made any. 
    • Make sure you wear a button up or a zip-up hoodie while you're getting ready so you don't have to pull anything over your head and ruin your hair or makeup. 
  • Pick up your date's boutonniere. 
  • Have a good lunch that won't make you bloat. 
  • Listen to some good music to relax and occasionally jump around while you get ready. Spontaneous flailing relieves stress and gets a funny reaction from your household pets. 
  • Drop your car off at wherever the after party is. 
  • Meet your date for a couple of pictures at your house or his. If he's picking you up, make sure you're the one who greets him at the door. Common etiquette. 
  • Make sure you get to wherever your prom pictures are being taken on time. You don't wanna be the diva that shows up late and keeps everyone waiting. 
  • Head out and have fun! All of the time you spent preparing for this is finally gonna pay off! You deserve this night of fun, don't stress about a damn thing. 
Holy hell, I didn't realize this was going to be so long! I was planning to just do some bullet points and that's it, hopefully this annotated checklist is helpful and not as obnoxious as it looks... 

Dress Troubles

So, you're shopping for your dress, and you've found the perfect one... Hate to be the pessimist, but let's look at all the things that could go wrong. 

It doesn't fit. 
This problem can happen a lot. Either the dress is too big, or it's too small, obviously. It's better to have the dress be a little bit bigger than it is to have it too snug. When the dress is too big, it's easy to bring it to a tailor and have it tailored so it fits perfectly. But when the dress is too snug, you could bring it to a tailor too, but it's probably a little more difficult for them to let it out. Also, if your dress is too long, a good tailor can take care of that too. 

You're shopping online and you don't know what size to get. 
Like I said before, it's better to get a slightly bigger size so a tailor can make it fit perfectly. But to avoid that altogether, look at the dress' sizing table, and most likely they'll teach you how to do your measurements. If you're exercising to get in shape for prom, and you can't estimate what size you'll be by the time you order your dress, then go order whatever size you are now. It's a bad feeling ordering the smaller size you think you'll fit into and then not be able to fit into it come prom night. You'd think that it would be good motivation, but it's not really a good way to think. 

You don't know what color to choose. 
This is my biggest problem with dress shopping, and I know how you feel if you're struggling with this issue. So, you don't know what colors really look fantastic on you. First, you should decide what kind of skin tone you have. Look at the veins on the inside of your wrist. If they're green, then you have yellow undertones, which means your skin tone is warm. If you see blue veins, your skin tone is cool. Another way to determine your skin tone (the vein thing doesn't really work with me, I can never tell) is to see how gold and silver jewelry look on you. If you look better with silver jewelry, you have a cool skin tone, and if you look better with gold jewelry, you have a warm skin tone. 

You want a strapless dress, but you also wanna get down on the dance floor. 
If you're like me and you love the look of strapless dresses (I love how they make my collarbones look), but you also love dancing with your arms in the air, have no fear. There are a few ways you can get away with going strapless without flashing the entire student body while you're throwing your hands up, cuz they're playing your song (if you got the Classic Miley Cyrus reference, we're automatically best friends). You could go with fashion tape, depending on how heavy your dress is. You should test this out before you're heading out the door to take prom pictures. When you have your dress and you have your tape, put them both on (I find that going braless when using tape is good if you don't wanna deal with two strapless garments slipping around), jump around your room and flail your arms about, and see if the tape can keep everything together. For Junior Prom I had a satin dress with sequins on the bodice, and the weight only gave the fashion tape about 10 minutes of life before I started fidgeting with my dress again. I don't know how it would work with, say, a chiffon dress or something, but by all means, try it out! I've heard stories of people keeping their dresses up by using double sided carpet tape... It works, apparently, but I'd imagine getting that off your boobs would be a real bitch (excuse my French)... Another pretty good idea that I've heard about is taking some Velcro strips and attaching one side to your bra and the other to your dress, and BOOM, you get to wear a bra and flail about on the dance floor. 
The method I've heard about that appeals to me the most, though, is using body adhesive. I've come across a little gem called IT Stays Body Adhesive (yes, it's a liquid like glue), and many women swear by it. I say if it can keep up a wedding dress, a prom dress would be easy peasy. If I can't get my hands on that adhesive, I'd just get a dress with thin removable straps and take them off for pre-prom pictures and put them on for the dancing. 

These are all the dress prom-blems I can think of for now, leave a comment and I'll add some more later!


Well hello there. I'm Alexa, you can call me whatever you want. Welcome to my take on whatever you need to know about prom. I'm going to do whatever I can to help make your prom night special. 

This blog wouldn't be here today if I hadn't been searching for 'prom guides' on Google and finding horribly outdated guides. Who said prom groups are for people who can't find dates?! 

Now, I'm not saying that some of the prom guides weren't incredibly helpful for me with my first go at prom last year. It gave me some good ideas on what to do with my friends before and after prom, what to expect, etc. But like I said, the guide is certainly outdated. I'm quite sure that it was written in 2005 and hasn't been updated once. 

So here I am, to the rescue! Hope I can help you out with my posts... But a quick disclaimer first, I'm no prom expert. I was on the prom committee for Junior Prom, but other than that, I didn't do too much with planning for my own prom group.