Prom night is arguably a bigger rite of passage than graduation itself. It’s such a big deal that people start planning for it before the school year even begins! If you’re overwhelmed with the amount of stuff to prep for, there are plenty of prom checklists and timelines online. We’ve also included one below!
RIGHT NOW: Plan You
If you want to look a certain way or feel a certain way by prom night, yesterday was the time to start working on it! If you think you will be timid and shy at the dance, start talking with your group of friends about how you all can stick together as a team. If you know your outfit and dinner plans will be costly, start earning and saving now. If you have skin or hair issues you want to address, start with long-term, subtle care techniques, such as trying a new cut or investing in the best cleanser to use with Clarisonic. Now is also the time to pay attention to diet and exercise (just don’t go overboard).
6-4 months before: Get your date (or not)
You don’t want your date to be taken! If you don’t already have a best friend or significant other to automatically go with, start asking around in your friend group. Odds are, most people don’t have an obvious date, either, so start sewing the seeds now. You don’t even have to make a big sign! You can strike up a casual conversation, perhaps in a big group of your friends. On the other hand, you may want to just go stag. You could even go as part of a group of friends, each going without a date. If you think you do want a date, though, now is the time to work up the courage!
2 months before: Start clothes shopping and do bookings
Talk with your date and/or group about what you all want to do the day of prom. If you want to get dinner somewhere fancy, make the reservation and book the limo now. Book hair and beauty appointments now, too, because salons will get slammed the week before prom.
Now is also the time to start aggressively outfit shopping, especially for girls. Start looking at stores and online, and give yourself ample time to make a choice and get the dress in for alterations if needed.
1 week before: Order corsage/get manicure/get facial/do brows
You don’t want to be the jerk who couldn’t get a corsage in time! Call your local florist and ask for a corsage–usually on the wrist for girls and a lapel pin for boys. Know what you/your date will be wearing, so you can match the color to the outfit–or plan together what color the two (or group!) of you want.
This is also the time to attend all the beauty appointments you booked so many weeks ago. Have fun. Don’t let yourself get stressed–think of this as a great week of self-care!
Day of: Hair appointment/dinner
The day of prom is the day to get your hair done! You should have booked this appointment several weeks ago, but if you didn’t, don’t be afraid to call up your mom or your older cousin to come in and whip something together; in reality, most people won’t be able to tell if your hair was done at a salon at not, and, in any case, you’ll soon be shaking out those curls on the dance floor!
If a group of you decided to go get dinner, make sure to arrive with plenty of time for the service to handle a large group. You want to arrive at prom fashionably late, but not so late that people have started to go home.
Night of: Have fun (and don’t be stupid!)
Have fun! You’ve managed to plan all this and do school at the same time! So dance and chat with your friends. Afterward, lots of high schools offer on-site afterprom parties to help cut down on the drunk driving. Don’t be stupid about drinking or sex; even though it’s prom night, it’s not so important that you should sacrifice the rest of your life for it.