Prom with a Budget

Okay ladies! Less than four months to prom. Now is the time to start getting ready. Let’s face it, you need to save money now.

Have you chosen your perfect date or are you going by yourself? Don’t rule out going with a group of friends- no expectations, fun in a group, safety in numbers and hopefully less stress. Exercise is a good stress reducer and if you want to shed a few pounds or just look fit in that dress now is the best time to start working out.

Plan your hair and make-up. Start “playing” with the styles now if you’re thinking of doing your own hair and make-up. Shop early for your prom dress for the best selection and the best deals. After picking the dress don’t forget shoes and decide on pantyhose or no hose. Don’t forget to plan your transportation to and from the prom as well as any parties. Add money to your budget in case at the last minute you choose to have someone do your hair and nails. You need to calculate extra money for hair accessories, jewelry, pocketbook, boutonnière, photographs, possible party money and tips for your driver or food servers.

With all these expenses prom can easily reach $1000. To keep the cost down do your own hair and make up. Here’s some tips from Odette Christiane, Prom Night Guide, PROM-dresses and a few from me:


*Less is more

*Choose either the lips or eyes to be the focal point. “Dolling” up both takes away from your face. If you use dark eyes use light or neutral lipstick. If you use red lip gloss use neutral eye shades.

*Gloss for the lips is in!

*Natural looking blush is in! The neutral colors show the eyes or lips off better.

*Find good mascara that separates, darkens, and even curls the lashes. Fake lashes are okay but if you use them cut down on the eye shadow.

*Sleep, diet, and exercise are essential. Remember that just because you love chocolate your face may not love it. Walking or any exercise for thirty minutes a day or every other day relieves stress.

*If you feel the need to wear foundation remember to blend evenly and completely!

*When you do your nails either use a clear coat or match them with the make-up or dress. Press on nails are the easiest and the cheapest compared to going to a salon. If you choose to go to a salon remember to book early for the day before and be careful not to chip.


In: Curls- Little and tight curly q’s. Straight is also always in. It’s classic.

Out: Natural Highlights

In: Underneath streaks of hair with metallic purple, wine red, or other loud colors.

Hair is almost always a problem. So choose an easy, fixable hairstyle. For a quick fix to look salon styled wear a headband with jewels or babies breath, or add flowers to your hair.

A classic ponytail leaving a small section of hair to wrap around the pony tail holder and secure the loose hair(small bobby pins are easiest to hold the hair and hide in your hair) will be quickest and easiest especially if you have to fix your hair after a fast dance. Use one flower to decorate the holding of the ponytail.

To put a different twist put the ponytail to one side or the other, leave a few short strands to put in a curl.

These tips will help you look fabulous and be easy on the budget so you can use the money for other fun things. Like a limo. If you want the limo experience cut the cost by riding with a group. If you are worried about have different plans than the group, or just going home early, you may just want to drive yourself or have a stand by driver like a friend or sibling you can count on not to be drunk. Remember if you drive don’t drink.

Once you have the transportation chosen, the nails, hair, and make up figured in to the cost as well as any hair accessories, then you need to add the most expensive items- tickets for the prom, boutonniere or a corsage if you go solo, photos, and shoes.

If you are on a budget photos are the easiest cost to cut. You will want to take your own pictures of the night anyway so skip the professional photographer at the prom and take your own camera. I am sure your parents will also be taking before pictures of you, you and your date, or you and your friends.

The best kept secret about prom dresses, every year they look the same especially if you go classic. This year styles to go for are ballroom gowns, flowers, hem lines, bright colors, ruffles, and beads. Black and white dresses, strapless, and asymmetrical gowns are also popular. Go to consignment shops, thrift stores, or pawn shops after you look at the new styles this year for $400. You could purchase a used dress that was only worn once for $10-$75.

After you purchase the perfect dress match the shoes and purse. You’ll want a small purse but it needs to be big enough for your camera and quick fixes. Now all that is left is jewelry. This year we are seeing a lot of people foregoing jewelry to show off necklines or hairstyles. If you wear your hair to the side, remember less is more and you may want to skip the jewelry. In contrast, if you do wear jewelry the style is big and recognizable this year.


*Stand out with accessories or a bright colored gown. *Boutonniere for date or corsage for self *Shiny Lip gloss is a girls best friend *Mini emergency kit- make-up, bobby pins, extra cash, nail file, clear nail polish, mini sewing kit, and pepper spray *Camera

Now that you are dressed, accessorized, equipped with a camera and have the perfect easy hair style and make-up all that is left is to have fun. It’s your night enjoy!

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