You’ll need to look your best by deciding what style you want to show off – sassy or sweet and simple? Don’t try anything new the night of the dance – be sure to do a “trial run” of hair and makeup before your big day. Where will you dine before dancing? Be sure to consider whether you want to go someplace fun and casual or a little more intimate with an elegant ambiance to set the mood. Also, money is not unlimited so you have to keep your budget in mind as you decide on what to wear, what to eat and how to get there. This guide will help prepare you for a flawless night so you can enjoy your high school dance experience without all the stress.
South Coast Plaza
3333 Bristol St.
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
Whether you want glitzy and glamorous or sweet and simple, you want to make a statement with your special signature look. South Coast Plaza has plenty of stores where you can find your ultimate dream dress. Stores like Nordstrom and Macy’s offer traditional dresses and give you lots to choose from, while teen favorites like Forever 21 offer trendy cocktail dresses and a more casual look at reasonable prices. If the sky is the limit, try Tadashi Shoji and you will be ready to walk the red carpet. Ladies, if possible, find a fabulous dress and shoes that are also comfortable. You want to enjoy dancing and mingling with friends, not worrying about blisters on your feet or whether or not something is hanging out where it shouldn’t be. Guys, be sure that you don’t insult your date by underdressing when she has gone all out to look her best. Complement her style and be sure to wear a tuxedo if the occasion calls for it.
Hair by Olivia
101 N. Harbor Blvd., Ste. 140
Fullerton, CA 92832
Updo? Downdo? How do you do your do? If you plan to do your own hair, be sure to do a trial run before the big night or you may be in for a shock when things don’t quite go your way. If you want something special, be sure to make an appointment at your favorite salon and meet with your stylist before the dance to discuss your thoughts. She may need you to avoid washing your hair that day or ask you to do something special to prepare your hair for her to do her best work. Keep in mind your budget, have an idea of what you want to spend and make sure you find out what you will be paying before you have an unpleasant surprise. With updos starting at $55 and makeup application running $50 or more, you want to be sure you and your stylist are on the same page. Guys, if you need a haircut, you may want to do it a few days before the dance to avoid that “I just got a haircut, can you tell?” look. Same rules apply for makeup.
Related: OC’s Best Wedding Hair And Makeup
3010 Lafayette Road
Newport Beach, CA 92663
Where do you want to eat? Be sure to make reservations. Also, be sure you have enough time to eat without rushing either to or from the restaurant, and you surely don’t want to rush your date’s meal. Save enough time for dessert. Also, think about the ambiance you want. Quiet and intimate or loud and fun? Do you want to go where all of the other kids will be going or make it somewhere you will be inconspicuous and alone? Also keep in mind that you may not want to do an Italian restaurant if you don’t want to carry the smell of garlic with you all night long. As with every other aspect of the dance, be prepared for the cost of the meal. Assume your date will order a drink, an appetizer, an entree and a dessert, and they may be the most expensive ones on the menu so bring plenty of cash or a credit card with a reasonable limit.
Related: Orange County’s Best New Restaurants
820 Acapulco St.
Laguna Beach, CA 92651
Arrive in style. Are mom and dad going to drive you or will you rent a limousine? Do you prefer one-on-one time with your date or do you plan to do a group thing? There are so many travel options. You can drive yourself, rent a limousine ranging from the usual black stretch limo to the popular Hummer limo to a party bus, or you can even hire a driver to drive your car to the dance. When booking a limo, keep in mind you may need extra time on the back end and whatever price you quoted, be sure you include a tip. To make the ride extra special, if you hire a limo make sure to inquire if it provides refreshments and what type – you may want to stock the limo with water, sodas, ice and other drinks to keep your thirst quenched. Also keep in mind things you may want in your car for after the dance such as comfy shoes, a cozy jacket or maybe even a soft blanket for your date to snuggle in on the ride home.
25402 Marguerite Parkway
Mission Viejo, CA 92692
What is your post-dance plan? Your parents have rules and you have wants. Be sure to think about what you and your date are both allowed to do before you make big plans that get squashed. You may want to grab a bite to eat, bowl a few strikes or just head home with your date for some quiet time alone. Confirm curfews and make sure everyone gets home in time so you can make it to the next dance.
Erin Johnson is a freelance writer covering all things Orange County. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.