Here are 20 things I wish I knew before going to prom:
1. It’s not the most important night of your life.
Although prom is without a doubt a night to look forward to, don’t put so much pressure on yourself. Anticipating it to be the best night of your life will only create unrealistic expectations. Go with the flow and you’ll enjoy without any added stress.
2. Go with a dress or tux that’s YOU.
Don’t be afraid to think outside the cliché box when picking out a dress or tux. You’ll regret wearing an ensemble you think was “normal,” when you could have gone with something totally your style.
3. Don’t worry about pictures.
Pictures will certainly be taken, but trying to pose for 2 hours before the event will only leave your body stiff and your cheeks sore. Take a couple photos and move on.
4. Plan your hair and makeup beforehand.
Decide how you’ll wear your hair and do your makeup a couple nights before the prom, so you’re not experimenting with 20 minutes to spare.
5. That being said, go light on the makeup.
Probably not the best night to try to glue on fake lashes if you’ve never done it before. If you’re getting your makeup done, go for a natural look that enhances your features. If you don’t usually wear any makeup, no pressure! Throw on some blush and mascara and be on your way. I promise, you won’t regret the “less is more” mentality.
6. Don’t go broke over your get-up.
It’s great having an excuse to shop, but don’t go crazy on the dress or tux cost. You will probably only wear this once, so keep that in mind. On the other hand, you can consider buying a dress or tux you’ll make use of in the future, which will lessen the blow of cost.
7. There’s no need to waste your money on a limo.
Sure, limos and party buses can be fun, but most of the time the ride to prom is a mere few minutes. Squeezing into seats on your ride there isn’t usually worth the money you spend to do so.
8. You don’t need a date.
Having a date to prom seems so much more glorious than it actually can be. Going stag to prom can be just as much fun, plus there’s no pressure to wear those big flowers on your wrist.
9. If you do bring a date, consider a friend.
Sometimes, bringing a friend along to prom is even better than a significant other. There’s less pressure, and you’ll always look back fondly at the photos of you two pals together.
10. Don’t be afraid to eat the food.
It makes sense that you might be hesitant to eat food at prom, considering you’re in a super fancy outfit. But you need to eat to have fun (or at least I do), so take advantage of this (potentially free) meal. Slap on a napkin and get in there.
11. Pregame wisely.
One of the biggest clichés about prom is that you have to sneak booze in and get hammered to have a good time. This is probably the case. There will usually be alcohol involved, whether it’s beforehand or during, so make sure you’re careful when sneaking the goods.
12. Come prepared.
Gals, take advantage of a small clutch and pack your necessities, like gum and fashion tape. If you’re not sure where your night is going but you might end up hooking up with your boyfriend (or your wanna be boyfriend), be proactive and bring a condom. Contrary to what happens in Hollywood… not everyone has sex the night of the prom but it never hurts to be prepared.
13. Include everyone.
Prom logistics can get confusing, from pre-prom pics to post-prom celebrations. Make sure you include everyone. You won’t regret it.
14. Take off your heels.
If this applies to you, don’t be hesitant to take off your heels for dancing, or replace heels with nice sandals (or even sneaks!) altogether. Comfort is key when you’re trying to have a good time.
15. Bring home a piece of prom.
Save your corsage or a party favor from prom as a keepsake. It’s always cool to have a physical piece of your night to bring home and look back on later.
16. Thank your chaperones.
This one might seem lame, but chaperones are almost always volunteers, and a quick thank you is all it takes to make them feel appreciated for giving their time. After all, they’ve put up with your antics and pretended not to notice you were drunk on the dance floor.
17. Get home safely.
Arrange a rid home or to an after-party before prom begins. You don’t want to be scrounging for a ride while you’re still in party mode. Buzzkill.
18. Keep in mind the things you would change.
If you’re unhappy with something about your night (and you get another chance) learn from it and alter that aspect next time.
19. You don’t have to go.
If prom isn’t your thing, don’t force yourself to go just because of its reputation. Do you.
20. This night is about you.
Most importantly, enjoy it. This is a night to celebrate you, so do what makes you happy and forget the rest.
Featured image source: c-isthenewblack.
What did you wish you knew before going to prom? Let us know down below!
Abagail is an editor at Society19. She is a graduate from Northeastern University with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.