prom dress shoppingFrom beginning to end, shopping for a prom dress can be a stressful experience, but only if you let it be! Follow these shopping tips and tricks to make finding a prom dress a breeze.

Create A Game Plan

  • Start saving early. A dress is often the biggest expense associated with prom. If you’re worried about saving enough, try putting away $10 each week at the beginning of the school year to help supplement the cost of a dress in the spring. Don’t forget that you’ll need additional money for shoes, accessories, and a hairstyle (if you plan on getting it done at the salon).
  • Get inspired! Comb through magazines to get a feel for the colors, styles, and embellishments you like in certain dresses. You can also find hairstyles and makeup looks while you’re searching for a dress. When you set foot in a store, you can present these features to the dress shop staff, who will be better equipped to help you find your dream dress.
  • Shop as close to prom as you can. Shopping for a dress too far in advance could be disastrous. You may gain or lose a few pounds in a year’s time, so it is better to shop closer to the time of prom. Typically this means about 3-4 months in advance. With that said, don’t wait to start dress shopping until the last minute, either. This will eliminate problems finding a dress in time, especially if you don’t know what kind of dress you’re looking for.

Stress Free Shopping

  • Be open-minded. Try on dresses you love and dresses you think you won’t like, too. A dress looks totally different on your body than it does on a hanger, so try even the oddest suggestions on. Step outside of your comfort zone and try on colors or styles that you hadn’t pictured in your mind – you might be surprised at what looks good on you.
  • Listen to the shop staff. The people employed in prom dress stores have a great deal of fashion knowledge, and have most likely gone through some type of training. To put it simply, they know what they’re talking about. They can help you figure out what fabrics and styles will work best with your body. Even if they suggest a dress you’re horrified by, try it on anyway. It could end up being THE dress!

Deciding On A Dress

  • Bring your shoes along. If you know the type of shoe that you’re going to be wearing (flat, kitten heel, etc.) but haven’t settled on a design, bring a similar pair with you dress shopping. If you already have your shoes, even better! This will help you to visualize where the dress will fall when you actually wear it, and whether or not it will require alterations.
  • Consider skin tone. This will be especially helpful in determining the color of your perfect dress. If you have a lighter complexion, stay away from lighter shades like white. Light colors can wash you out completely in photographs. If you plan on tanning for prom, avoid bright shades of orange. A bright dress will clash with your vibrant skin tone.
  • Listen to yourself! Deciding on a prom dress ultimately comes down to your personal style and what you feel comfortable in. It is fine to take the opinion of your family and friends into consideration, but don’t let them make this decision for you.

Keep calm and shop on with this prom dress shopping guide.