We took an informal poll recently and asked those who had been to prom for their top ten lists. We started with the top ten things you should never do before prom, and here is what they had to say:
- Get sunburned or tan.
Not only is it just unhealthy, but unsightly tan lines can absolutely ruin the impression you could have made with your gorgeous prom dress, and peeling while wearing a tux is just a no. Now is not the time to try tanning in a salon or getting a spray tan, either. Anything you do differently with your skin can have unexpected, and often not attractive consequences.
- Get a new haircut right before prom.
The day on which you will take some of your most enduring photos of your youth is not the one you want to remember because the stylist misheard “just take a little off the ends,” as “cut it all, this may be the end!” If you can afford to do a run-through, give yourself a few weeks, at least, and more if you’re experimenting with something more drastic. Or, save the totally new ‘do for after prom.
- Eat a big or exotic meal.
Maybe the pre-prom party isn’t the best time to experiment with Asian-Mexican Fusion Nitrogen Ice Cream Sundaes. You don’t want to feel bloated, upset your stomach or spend the entire night in the bathroom (wrong kind of dancing). Take it easy and stick to safe foods and some healthy hydration.
- Don’t starve yourself.
In what seems like a direct contrast to number 3, you also don’t necessarily want to fast right before prom. Passing out because you hoped to look just that much better in your dress is not only unhealthy, it’s embarrassing. Not the way you want to be remembered, but certainly, the way to make an impression no one will ever forget. Eat some lean protein, drink some water (hydrated is a great way to give yourself a healthy glow, anyway). Take a snack in your clutch, or ask your date to hold on to one for you if you tend to get light-headed and are used to small, infrequent snacks.
- Don’t get heroic with the curling iron!
If you’re working your own hair magic, be careful with the curling iron around your face. You’ll be more excited, and maybe more nervous than usual. One slip and you could end up with an unsightly mark that is both painful and hard to cover. Tread carefully, and don’t be a hero!
- Drink alcohol.
First of all, it’s illegal. Second, I guarantee it’s against school rules. Third, it’s just a lame life choice. Fourth, it’s dangerous. That’s really all I should have to say about that.
- Fight with your parents.
Come on. It’s high school. We have so little left to leverage, so you know, “Fine, you’re not going to prom,” is going to come up. Why risk it?
- Stay up all night the night before.
You DO in fact need your beauty sleep. You will probably be a barrel of nerves, but try to get some sleep. You’ll have a lot more fun if you’re not taking a nap while your friends are partying.
- Try a new makeup product.
Much like the haircut advice and the tanning notes, trying anything new on your skin in the 7-10 days before prom is less likely to miraculously turn you into a movie star, and more likely to give you a painful and patchy reaction. If you have a serious skin issue come up just before the big day, ask your dermatologist or family doctor for some options, and choose the one that is least likely to make you turn shades of … well, whatever color your skin naturally isn’t.
- Accept a promposal from someone you don’t like.
Awkward proms are no fun at all. It would be much better to go with a group of friends, or solo than it would be to spend the evening with someone you can’t stand. You’re likely going to hold hands, and pose closely for photos, and be socially obligated to spend time with this person at prom. Don’t let it be horrible just so you can say you have a date!
This is the short-list, but it all boils down to making good choices and remembering that prom is what you make of it. So make it safe, sane and totally great, or at the very least … don’t be a hero with that curling iron. Trust those of us who know!