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Money Saving Prom Fashion

There is a lot of pressure on making prom the biggest night of the year, or even the biggest night of your life until this point. If you're not careful, you could end up shelling out big bucks to give the night the most sparkle possible. It is possible to create a flawless evening without emptying your wallet or charging a fortune on a credit card. You want to make this night memorable without big monthly credit card bills or a debt to your parents as a lasting reminder of the fun!

Dress for Less

Your prom dress doesn't need to be new to suit you perfectly. Second-hand stores and consignment shops are great places to find gently worn dresses and tuxedoes for a fraction of their original cost. Rental places sell gently worn clothes, and may even make necessary alterations or adjustments for you in the shop. In fact, you don't need to own the dress or tuxedo to own your look. Rental shops are great places to pick up the perfect item, especially when you're probably never going to wear what you wore to prom ever again.

Looking to go the zero cost route? Borrowing is also an option. Older friends, cousins, or even your mom probably have closets full of prom-worthy dresses that you can wear for the evening.

We asked Terra Wellington, actress, author and green living enthusiast for her tips as well. Here's what she suggested:

"Re-use/vintage is also a way to go, but you can be more sophisticated about it.  If you love the Boho-chic style, you'll find loads of style options for yourself at second-hand stores.  And, if you're crafty, it is simple to add a little embellishment, a little extra dart or pleat, or some fun accessories to put together a very happening re-use combo.  At Etsy.com and Ebay.com you can find a number of retailers who re-purpose and re-sell vintage wear. 

Because I live in Los Angeles, second-hand stores are king.  We get such amazing designerwear with virtually no wear donated or on commission to these stores. One store I particularly like is Crossroads Trading -- they have a fun blog you can follow to get style ideas using vintage finds.  They have stores in Chicago, New York, and along the West Coast, and they will let me trade in my gently used clothes (if they are in season/style) for credit I can spend in the store."

Hair

Getting your hair done professionally is a nice experience and it can make your hair look great. If you are due for a trim and your stylist blows out your hair for free or a few extra dollars, schedule your trim for the day of prom. Don't schedule a complete haircut with a new style, though, or you may be disappointed with your final look. Another way to save money on hair is to do it yourself, of course. Check out several styles and choose a few that you may like. Updos (messy or neat), braids, headbands and other hair accessories can make your hair look terrific without getting it professionally done. Practice on your own or with a friend, sister, mom, etc. when you have time to spare. Take photos of each one and choose your favorite look. Then give yourself plenty of time to do (and possibly redo) your hair on the big day.

Makeup

Getting your makeup done professionally is another nice luxury if you can afford it. If you live near a department store that has makeup counters, you can schedule a makeover and consultation the day of prom and get your makeup done for free. Purchase the lipstick or gloss for touch-ups the night of the party. If that's not an option, drugstore brands of makeup can be inexpensive, come in sets of several different colors and are many brands are made just for teenage skin and coloring. Go in with a few friends on sets of eyeshadow and lip gloss, bronzer, concealer and tinted moisturizer. Don't share lipliner, lipstick, eyeliner or mascara, however, since you apply those directly to your eyes and mouth, you could share germs and possible infections. Practice applying makeup with each other and help each other out on the big day.

Accessories

Borrowing is the way to go with accessories. It's better to have one really special piece that means something to your mom, sister or close friend than buy a chunky piece of costume jewelry you'll only wear once. Secondhand stores are great sources for solid pieces of jewelry that will look better and more important than something plastic and fake from a teen accessory store.

Use Your Head

Be a sharp shopper when you're looking for ways to make your night special. If the options are to have a beach bonfire (inexpensive) or a night out on the town (expensive), keep fun and finance in mind and make smart choices. Prom is a right of passage from childhood to adulthood. Since you're on your way to becoming an adult, think and act responsibly and you'll be sure to have a night to remember!

Have Your Say

How do you save money on big ticket items? Tell us your thoughts on spending less money and having more fun!

 

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10 Comments

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Where Will You Buy Your Prom Dress?

  • I'm going to get a dress from The Princess Project!
  • I'll buy it at the most expensive boutique in the city.
  • I'm wearing my sister's hand-me-down gown.
  • I'll try to find a cheap, but pretty dress at the mall.

Dear Dish-It In The Forums

AimeeJury
AimeeJury posted in Style:
i'm ginger sadly i had brown hair when i was born though
reply about 10 hours
6thBeatle
6thBeatle posted in Style:
Black. I'm a Filipino.
reply about 11 hours
6thBeatle
Don't worry too, you'll grow up too and live on your own, I noticed that my aunt is unfair to children (except to her child) and I can't wait to be an adult (she's afraid to adults). And when you grow up, don't make revenge to your parents, I know that you still love them. Trust me, things would get worse if you make revenge.
reply about 11 hours
6thBeatle
I understand you, but those things are worse than my experience. I am a very lonely nerd and I don't have friends. When my mom goes to work she leaves me with my unfair aunt. My aunt is so unfair, she always blames me and ignores my explanations, she always defends my 5 year old cousin even though she's wrong. She's so unfair I wanted to drink bleach or hang myself but I realized that there are more people who love me. When I was months old or maybe 1 year old my dad broke up with my mom because our family doesn't like him because he hurts my mom physically, called my grandpa a liar even though my dad knows how honest he is, and he always blamed things on me when I was a baby. I met him a month ago (maybe), and we were supposed to talk about important thing like if why he left me and other stuff like that, but instead he boasted about being the best pilot in the airport, he did nothing but boast. I never want to meet him again. My problem with my mom is that she hurts me horribly like jumping on my back, and she says hurtful things like she wanted me to die and that she loves her boyfriend (who is a jerk) more than me. I have to admit, I'm the one who started the mess, but that's no way to discipline your child. I apologized to her, but she is still pulling my hair. After we relaxed for about 40 minutes, she apologized. That's it, but my mom is really hard working and is very patient to me (but when it's too much, she gets crazy). There's always a good side of someone. I hope that there are more of your relatives and friends who love you, my advice is to write a letter to your parents, and if it didn't work well, you could always talk to the guidance in your school or your teacher, that's the only one I could think of.
reply about 11 hours
QveenAvi
QveenAvi posted in Family Issues:
The way they are doing it is wrong,however it sounds like your parents really love you and really want the best for you. they have faith in you. when you get a 3 if they know that you can get a 4 so they address you want it. not that they don't love you.Your parents were the ones who raised you and introduced you to this life so you should always respect them and think them as your god.
reply about 21 hours