Since Yorkdale Prom Ambassador Kate spends her weekends working at a salon, we thought she’d have pretty good advice when it comes to elegant prom dos. We were right! Whether you have curly locks or thin straight hair, Kate gives you step-by-step DIY styles that will complement any prom look. Now you just have to decide whether you want to channel a romantic Taylor Swift or dramatic Lady Gaga.
If you asked me what my biggest regret about prom 2010 was, I would have to say my hair, hands down. My dress was a beautiful, pale blue, floor-length evening gown. My hair, on the other hand, looked like something out of an 80’s disco. I could try to blame it on the salon I chose, but really, it was my fault. Please, learn from my mistakes!
Due to time constraints, I had to pick the salon closest to my house. Those were my first two errors. Research salons and try to find one that’s both good and nearby (there are a few at Yorkdale you could try!). Then, make sure you leave enough time for your appointment. Being rushed will stress out both you and the stylist. Finally, a couple of weeks before prom, go in for a consultation. Most salons will do this free of charge; just call ahead and arrange a time to stop by. Bring pictures, and make sure you talk to the stylist who will actually be doing your hair! Their colleague might know exactly what you want, but that will be of little use to you come prom day. (Speaking of prom day, don’t wash your hair then. Do it the night before at the latest. Having a little grease in your hair helps style it.)
Better yet, avoid that altogether, save yourself some money, and do it yourself! Here are some tips for three of my favourite hairstyles:
Taylor Swift Classic Chignon
For a classic, elegant look à la Taylor Swift, opt for a curly chignon. You might want to prep your hair with a heat protectant or curl enhancer. Tresemme has some good ones you can find at Shoppers Drug Mart, or, if you’re willing to splurge a bit, salons carry some great ones, too (try Moroccanoil, or the Osis line by Schwarzkopf). Start by curling your hair. My favourite way to do this is with a 3/4” or 1” curling iron. There are some great ones at Sephora, but I use the purple Conair ones you can get at Sears. Once that’s done, take sections of your hair and pin them in place, crossing the pins with each other as you go. I usually aim for the nape of my neck, and off to the side. It sounds simple enough, but, believe me, you’ll need some practice first!
A Whimsical Waterfall Braid
The waterfall braid is a bit easier, especially if you know how to French braid. Start by using a rattail comb to take a one-inch section from your hairline, right above your ear. Split that into three even strands, and then move the top strand into the middle, and then the bottom one, just like a braid. Next, take a small section of hair from right next to the roots of your top strand, and add it in, just like a French braid. Move that top strand into the middle, and then drop the bottom strand. Pick up a new strand from next to where you dropped that one, and place it in the middle. Then return to the top strand, repeating those steps until you feel the braid is long enough. Pin it in place with a couple of bobby pins crossed over each other. For some extra bling, try some fancy, bejeweled pins.
The Gaga Bow
The final look is a bow placed on top of your head, Lady Gaga-style. To start, pull all your hair up into a high ponytail, placing it wherever you want the bow to be (think top of your head, off-centre). Take an elastic, and begin to tie. On the last twist, though, don’t pull your hair all the way through. Leave a good couple of inches hanging out at the front of your head. Next, take the big bun you’ve created on top of your head, and split it in two to create the sides of the bow. You may have to pin the bottom part of to your head in order to keep it in place. Then, take the few inches you left out, and pull them back, in between the two sections. Pin it down there, tucking the pins under the hair elastic to hide them. This look is my personal favourite, although it takes some serious guts to rock it at prom.
Whatever look you choose, finish it off with some hairspray. Be careful not to touch it afterwards, though, because that could create frizz. Flyaways are the last thing you want to worry about on prom night!