The homecoming dance. Sure, it’s not prom, but it IS a big night with it’s fair share of decisions. With several homecomings coming up over the next couple of weeks, we decided to turn to our resident expert – high school student and Fiore Communications fall extern – Hallie Neal to get the rundown.
The hours before the dance is half the fun of Homecoming. Getting ready with your friends, eating dinner and taking pictures are staples of the Homecoming experience. However, it’s a busy time of year and all the preparation can be overwhelming. Going all out can be fun, but taking a more relaxed approach can save you time and stress while keeping the spirit and the fun of Homecoming.
Finding the perfect dress often requires a mad dash to the mall and a full day of shopping – at times, the weekend before the dance! Before pulling out your credit card, one idea is to ask a few of your friends if they have any dresses from previous dances or other special occasions. You might find that a classic style from a few years ago is still fashionable and fits just as well as a brand-new dress.
If you don’t find a good fit for free, invite some friends and make a day of searching consignment shops where formal dresses are frequently dropped off after being worn once.
Shoes should be the easiest part of the whole ensemble. If you don’t already own a classic pair of heels, now could be a good time to invest in one because good shoes are something you’ll wear over and over. Plus, while necessary for pictures and dinner, shors usually come off before you step onto the dance floor, so don’t stress about finding heels that can withstand hours of dancing.
Makeup artists probably know more about eyeshadow and contouring, but you know your own face and makeup preferences best. With so many resources online, it’s easy to recreate simple but sparkly eye makeup using products that you already know work for you. In the week leading up to the dance, you can always practice winged liner or a few smoky eyes if you’re nervous about doing your own Homecoming-ready makeup.
The Nails and The Hair
Like makeup, there are a lot of resources on Pinterest and YouTube for DIY manicures and updos. Buying glittery nail polish or sticking with a classic nude looks stylish and can be done at home. You could even suggest having a girl’s night the evening before the dance to watch movies and do each other’s nails.
Your hair can be as simple or as elaborate as you want. Simply straightening or curling your hair looks pretty and polished. If you don’t have time to follow a tutorial online of a complicated braid or bun, half-up half-down styles or a sleek ponytail can be formal as well as fashion-forward.
Making reservations is usually the first step in preparing for Homecoming, especially if you’re going with a large group. A dance can be a fun excuse to try a new place and splurge on a fancy dessert, but dinner can often feel rushed because of all the other activities that night. If you want to save time for getting ready, taking pictures and going to the actual dance, ordering pizza is a great option. It saves the whole group money, and you can eat it while you get ready. Everyone loves pizza, and it eliminates rushing to a restaurant across town just to leave for the dance soon after.
This time of year is busy, but don’t let that stop you from having a blast at Homecoming. Going to the nail salon and spending hours dress shopping can seem like prerequisites for the dance, but they don’t have to be. If money or time is holding you back from going, remember that putting a little less effort in before the dance won’t change how much fun you have. You won’t regret saving money, but you could regret not spending a memorable night with your friends!
Hallie Neal is entering her senior year at Chiles High School and is exploring the world of communications through an externship here at Fiore Communications. After graduating high school, Hallie plans to attend college with a major in business. When Hallie isn’t in school, she enjoys finding new fun activities to do around Tallahassee and spending quality time with friends and family.