Whether you’re about to attend your first prom, you’ve just been to one, or your dancing days were many moons ago, it’s likely that you've come to experience DIY prom hair. For the most part, doing your own hair for prom sounds like a wonderful idea: You get to save money and style your locks exactly how you want them. After all, there’s not much worse in the world of prom than spending a ton of money having your hair done, only to leave the salon rocking a style that’s the opposite of what you dreamed of.
However, DIY prom hair can be a risky business if you’re not blessed in the art of hair styling. Of course, there are plenty of YouTube tutorials out there, with step-by-step instructions. Sadly, the trouble with some of these online tutorials is that they often require a lot more styling chops than the average Joe might possess. Sure, many YouTubers are fantastic tutors, but some tutorials need a basic level of skill in order to complete the look. This means videos will regularly promise “quick and easy” hairstyles, all the while expecting the viewer to be able to Dutch braid, be a whizz with a curling wand, and have a plethora of products at hand.
So whether you’re preparing yourself for what’s to come, or reminiscing about your prom days, here are the many stages of embarking on DIY prom hair.
1. Watching Tons Of Prom-Themed Movies & Scouring The Internet For Inspiration
You start making a Pinterest board with all of your favorite hairstyles that you happen across online and that would be perfect for your prom theme. After this, you look back to gorgeous, formal hairstyles worn in your favorite movies and TV shows.
If your prom was in the earlier '00s, you likely wanted to recreate Sam's pristine barrel curls from A Cinderella Story. If your prom is on the horizon, your style icons could be anyone from Kendall Jenner to your fave character on Pretty Little Liars .
2. Going On An Expedition To Buy A Selection Of Fancy Hair Accessories You Won't End Up Using
You go on a shopping trip that is reserved solely for finding the most beautiful hair accessories for prom. You arrive home with a variety of options, feeling super excited at all of the creative styles you can now achieve.
However, you put your shopping bag somewhere "safe," completely forget about your purchases, and stumble across them when you're packing for college.
3. Practicing Your Favorite Look
You have your Pinterest board or a picture of your favorite prom style icon in view and you begin attempting your desired look. You start off full of motivation because the style you picked looks fairly simple, right?
4. Panicing When It Goes Disastrously Wrong
You look like you're wearing a wig that's been left unloved and untouched for years, crammed into the bottom of a box in your school's theater department. Panic starts to edge into view, but you realize you have tons of time and other options left before you go into meltdown mode.
5. Trying To Follow A YouTube Tutorial
You pick out a tutorial that promises a "Magical Five-Minute Prom Style." It begins easy enough, but soon you get lost, can't see what you're doing, and you have to keep rewinding the video to make sense of it.
6. Feeling Like A Failure When Your Finished Style Looks Nothing Like The Vlogger's
WTH happened?! How does the vlogger have the most wonderful hairstyle and your barnet looks like you're channeling The Scarecrow from The Wizard of Oz ? Well, there goes your daydream of becoming the world's next big beauty YouTuber.
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7. Getting A Trial Prom Style At The Salon & Realizing It Costs Your Whole Allowance
You give in and realize that you're not capable of creating a masterpiece with your own hands, so you suck it up and book a trial appointment at your local salon. The stylist makes quick work of your 'do and you love the finished look. She tells you the trial comes at a reduced rate, but when she informs you of how much you owe, you clench your teeth for fear that you'll never be able to close your mouth again.
You hand over your hard-earned cash and realize that an entire month of working after school in the coffee shop will be essential. You immediately make plans to do something, because you're not going to waste your opulent hair on a night in watching Netflix.
8. Marveling At The Most Popular Girl In Your Class' Consistently Perfect Hair
She either wakes up at the crack of dawn to tease her tresses into immaculate styles every morning, or she was a saint in her past life. You can't quite decide. One thing you do know is that no matter how hard you try, your hair will never rival hers, unless you become a millionaire and hire a personal stylist.
9. Entering A Pit Of Despair & Flaking On Your Date
Well, there is no way you can attend prom without looking like you belong outside in a field or spending a fortune, so you're going to have to cancel on your date or BFF. You're just about to say, "It's not you, it's me," when a lightbulb goes off in your brain.
10. Changing Your Mind At The Last Minute
We've all got that one friend — or multiple friends, if you're lucky — who are phenomenal at all things hair and beauty. They likely want to be a hairdresser or a makeup artist after they graduate. Since they planned and practiced their hairstyle months ago, you know you can rely on them to help you out of this sticky situation. You can always bribe them with free pizza too.
11. Feeling Like Danielle At The Ball
You shall go to the ball! Your friends are miracle workers and you just know that as soon as you step foot into prom, everyone will turn around and look at you and your amazing 'do, like that magical moment in Ever After. More realistically, you'll be having so much fun you'll forget what you look like after 10 minutes.
Although doing your own hair for prom is a roller coaster ride of emotions, chances are it'll all work out in the end. If it doesn't, at least you'll have some epic photos to make you smile later in life.
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