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Vaughn Lowery, 360 MAGAZINE

Top Tips to Cut Prom Costs and Still Guarantee a Great Night

Today, high school proms have evolved into red carpet events that can easily cost families hundreds of dollars. But the good news is that, according to the experts, there’s no need to blow your savings account on prom – you can do it on a budget and still ensure that your child has the time of their lives. Whether it’s buying outfits, arranging transport or getting hair and makeup on point, there are plenty of budget-friendly alternatives that you can swap for while still making sure that your teen looks and feels a million dollars on the night. We’ve put together some of the best money-saving tips for parents for the upcoming prom season. 

#1. Saving on the Prom Dress or Tux:

If you’ve got a daughter who’s going to prom, then chances are her dress is going to take the biggest chunk out of your budget. But the good news is that there are several things you can do in order to save money on the dress, or at least get a more value-for-money option. And the same goes if your teen is wearing a tux. 

Buy online – online shopping is a godsend when it comes to getting a prom dress or a tux. You can often find budget-friendly options at online stores. For instance, Jovani stock dresses to suit every budget (without the quality being compromised) which might be worth exploring . And, don’t just look at dedicated prom sites too; you may be surprised at what comes up in the evening dress section of your favorite online clothing store or the suit section at a popular menswear retailer. 

Rent – since the dress or tux is only going to be worn for the one night, renting instead of buying is a sensible option – however, this will mean that your teen has to be extra careful not to damage their outfit on the night. If you’re willing to take this risk, renting instead of purchasing outright can save a significant amount. 

Second hand – finally, whether you’re getting a dress or a tux for your teen, don’t rule out second-hand options. There will be plenty of parents selling off last years’ prom outfits at bargain prices. 

#2. Save on Accessories:

When it comes to accessorizing a prom outfit, you can end up spending much more than you’d bargained for if you’re not careful – especially if your teen wants the full works! Keep these tips in mind to make sure that you stay within your budget:

Keep it simple – according to the experts, this year it’s all about the earrings – so investing in a stunning pair of earrings will finish the outfit off nicely. Excessive bling isn’t on trend anymore, so there’s no need to go all out with necklaces, bracelets and rings. If you’re choosing accessories for a tux, a pair of quality cufflinks are ideal. Don’t forget that these are items that can be used again and again, so they make perfect graduation gifts too. 

Shoes – there’s plenty of dancing to be had at prom, so don’t overspend on shoes that are probably going to be coming off within the first couple of hours.

#3. Showstopping Makeup and Hair on a Budget:

Makeup is a must for most teenagers at prom – whether it’s a full face or a slick of tinted moisturizer. When it comes to makeup:

Multitasking products are your friend – if you’re getting new cosmetic items for your teen for prom, then opt for items that can double up, like lipsticks that double as cheek stain, or eye pencils that can be used for filling in brows. 

Use what you have – there’s no need to experiment with an entirely new makeup look for prom. If your teen already wears makeup, chances are they have a look in mind that they are comfortable with, and the products that they already have will probably do just fine. 

Practice makes perfect – when it comes to hair, going to a salon might not be necessary. Check out Pinterest and YouTube tutorials, and spend some time practicing styles beforehand so you can DIY it. 

#4. Arrive in Style for Less:

Celebrating with a meal and arriving to prom in style can be pricey, so keep these tips in mind:

Check out coupon sites – websites like Groupon can be an ideal place to look if you want to find the best deals on limo hire in your area, plus discounted meals at posh restaurants fit for a prom queen or king. 

Host it yourself – instead of a fancy restaurant, hosting a pre-prom dinner at your home or a cheap local venue can help to cut costs, especially if you get all the parents involved when it comes to bringing a dish along. 

Do you have any money-saving tips for prom of your own to add? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.