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Finding a Prom Dress

So, prom is fast approaching (for me at least anyway) and I know that there are people at my school in particular that don't have their dress yet, so I thought that I would give some of you girls some tips on how to find your perfect prom dress.

These are some tips that I followed to find my own dress and also that I gave my friends, which allowed them to find theirs.

Tip 1: Inspiration

First of all you'll need to know what you're looking for. Pinterest. Pinterest will be your best friend! It is the most useful tool when it comes to finding inspiration. There are so many dresses on that website/app, that it is impossible not to find a style that you like. I used the keywords 'Prom dress' in the search bar and hundreds of images and boards came up. I spent a good hour just looking at all of the beautiful dresses before deciding what colour I wanted. I looked at a bunch of them until I had some kind of idea about what I wanted my dress to look like. Pinterest is the perfect tool to use if you have no clue what you want. All you have to do is surf the site and see if a reoccurring style or colour you like keeps popping up. For example, you may see a ton of two pieces that you love, so two pieces could be the way to go. In my opinion it is far easier to look for the style, rather than the colour as this will narrow down your options and you'll become a lot less overwhelmed with the choices to choose from. If you just type in 'Blue prom dresses' then you could be looking for a very long time. It is super easy to create an account. You even have the option to use your existing Facebook, Google or Twitter account, which decreases the time it takes to set up your profile.

As you can see, there are categories that you can pick to narrow down your options.

What I love about Pinterest is that you can like and pin the boards/images which are stored on your account.
This means that you don't have to download the image to your phone or desktop but you can still have all of the dresses in one area.

A lot of the boards show the website and prices of the dresses, which is extremely convenient as you can buy the exact dress that you see an image of.

Tip 2: Decide on a budget

There is no point looking at dresses that you can not afford. It is only going to make you get upset over the fact that you can't get the dress you've fell madly in love with. You need to either make your own budget if you're paying with your own money or negotiate with your parents if they are purchasing it for you. Once you've came up with a price range, then you can start to search for dresses that could potentially be yours. You'll need to keep in mind that if you are buying on-line or even in store, you're probably going to have to pay extra for tailoring and alterations. Make sure that your budget is realistic and reasonable, because let's face it, it is only one night.

Tip 3: Advice from Friends and Family

Get some advice from the people closest to you. It isn't the best idea to ask questions and show potential dresses to just anyone because that kind of ruins the whole surprise factor. I don't know about you but I want to really surprise people when I go to prom. It's your last time to represent yourself in front of your peers before you go your separate ways, so you want to leave on a high note. You'll most likely stay in contact with your close friends but it is 99.9% guaranteed that you won't see everyone all together again.

Get your friends to help you by asking them questions such as what colour suits your skin tone best and what sort of style do they think is most flattering etc. I do it with my friends on our group chat and we tend to really help each other out. My mum and their opinions influenced my decision to buy my dress. Your family and friends' input may be a benefit to you.

Tip 4: Search around 

You're going to actually have to start looking intensely at this stage. This is particularly aimed at those who have prom this month or next month like I do. It's definitely best to shop physically and go to actual prom shops at this point as you won't have to wait as long for the dress. Especially if you buy abroad, the shipping is never guaranteed to arrive at the time it gives you and it can be expensive. Nevertheless, there is nothing wrong with shopping on-line at all. I bought mine on-line and everything turned out fine. The only thing was that the website stated that it would take 5 days to arrive however it came 2 weeks later. This wasn't a problem for me as I ordered it in February so I had lots of time but I'm very impatient when it comes to waiting for packages. If you've left it this long to find your dress and you plan to get it on-line, then be aware that shipping can be crazy.

If you plan to go shopping for a dress in stores, then go prepared. Try and follow the steps above before going as it won't be as overwhelming when you go for your appointment. You may get tired as people tend to spend hours looking and trying on dresses, so bring food and water, if the store allows you to bring it on the premises. Otherwise, bring money to buy food afterwards because it gets tiring.

Something else I would recommend is to bring heels with you. Whether they're your prom shoes or random heels that you own, having them will let you see how each dress sits on your body and looks with heels. You'll also be able to see how much the dress raises from the floor with heels on.

Tip 5: Trial and Error

You need to try things out. I found my dress and it was so inexpensive that I thought it was too good to be true. Because of the cost, I thought the dress must have been cheaply made and must have looked nothing like the stunning image that was shown, however seeing that every single review was positive, I risked it and bought the dress. Like I said, it wasn't expensive so I had nothing to lose and the company had a 7 day return policy so If I didn't like it, I was able to get my money back. I received the dress 2 weeks later and fell in love with it. It is exactly as the picture looks and the quality is way better than I imagined it to be. I took the chance and found the right dress for me. The best thing to do is to try on dresses that you wouldn't expect to ever like. I know people who have tried dresses just for fun that they didn't ever think they'd like and ended up buying it. Most companies, if not all, have a return policy too, so if you don't like the dress, as long as it has been kept in good condition you can send it back and keep looking!

I hope that these tips were helpful in some way. I hope everyone finds the perfect dress and has the best prom experience. Make some incredible memories!

Happy Shopping!

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