I know there are a lot of formals coming up, both for “leavers formals” in schools, universities and general summer balls with work and charities (For my American readers, formal=prom). Also, it is of course wedding season!
Formals and balls can be a really expensive time-dress, hair, makeup, tan, nails etc! If you are on a budget you can do things just as well yourself. I think if I was on a budget I would focus my money on getting my hair done professionally rather than spending more money on a dress. I actually looked at some really LOVELY dresses in Quiz recently and they were not expensive at all. Tan can be done well at home, as can hair and nails, providing you give it all a wee trial run some evening before you go.
Below is a picture of me at my 6th Form Leavers formal (June 2010…I was 18, bless!). I really tried to go as Hollywood glam as possible! It was held at the end of June so I tried to stay summery and not go for darker colours. I had previously been to a friend’s winter formal and worn a black and white dress which was more appropriate for the season. I wore a purple/pink dress (ombre style….was it a future fashion forecast!?) which was from JS Collections at House of Fraser. I think it cost £220 and it was the first dress I tried on! I thought I would have been looking for months. I teamed it with grey 3inch heels from Zara and a grey clutch from Primark (see, it takes all sorts to make an outfit!). I wore diamond pear drop earrings and a large statement ring which was purple and pink, also from Primark. I had a French manicure, pedicure and a spray tan the day before the formal.
The day of the formal I had my make-up and hair done in Bellaire in Belfast. I had my hair put up in a VERY large bun! I took pictures of what I wanted with me-many of them were of J-Lo! I think the best way for a hairdresser to see what you want is a visual interpretation-any good hairdresser will have no problem in trying to recreate a look for you. My natural hair was put up in a ponytail and 4 sets of extensions were wrapped around my natural hair and pinned into place. I thought it looked really different. Needless to say, it was very heavy!
If you want to do something different with your hair-don’t be scared! I was very aware that most people in my year were going to have their hair down in curls. I think there is nothing wrong with that but my day to day hair was down in curls (I hardly ever blow-dried my hair out at school! I was too busy trying to be smart to worry about it!). I think it’s great if you do something that is a complete contrast to your normal look, especially if it is a really big event. My personal rule is that if it something that is very high around the neck or very embellished (like my dress), wear your hair up to show off the amazing dress. If your dress is very plain and you plan not to wear many accessories, hair down, either poker straight or an amazing big blowdry. If you have short hair usually, clip in extensions work a treat. Clip in fake fringes can also transform a look for a night without any commitment. Fishtail braids are a great way between up and down-they are great for anyone who isn’t a fan of their hair all off their face as they can be done very loosely. Alternatively, rock your natural hair but mix it up with a head piece, hair band or an embellished hair clip.
Below are some celeb styles which hopefully will inspire any of you feeling a bit lost in the hair department. (Photos via Google Images; no copyright intended)
Twist and Curled Hair for Prom
Pprom hairstyle with french braid ,narrow section from ear to ear.
Braid and bun
half up half down prom hairsyle
If you are still having hair woes after this, please do not hesitate to drop me a comment !