Donna Kim-Brand

Prom Hair Highlights

Unless you are a dancer, debutante, or played dress-up, your first formal dress-up event where hair plays a big role just might be your school prom. As I recall from years past, the trick is to look like you made effort while also feeling comfortable. After all, part of the thrill of prom night is slow dancing with the guy of your dreams, which might include him running his nervous fingers through your hair. Not easy to do when your hair is amassed tightly into a bun; not to mention the headache you might end up with since your tresses and scalp aren’t used to being held hostage like this for hours on end.

Having said that, up-do’s as well as half-up do’s and hair-down styles are all popular for prom night with medium to long hair. I’ll suggest a couple of half-up styles here.

By the way, for short hair, unless you intend to make a statement with a highly spiked hair-do, minimize the styling gel so your hair doesn’t poke your fella’s eye out when dancing cheek to cheek.

A current celebrity inspired style is to part your hair on one side and use curlers or a curling iron to add gentle curls all around. Then create a braid from the part-line heading back towards your ear on the side with less hair. This creates a bit of mystery from the front, wonderment on the braided side, and voluminous fullness on the other side. The effect is a kind of controlled allure.

A style I haven’t seen before is the Dutch Infinity Braid, another half-up do that gives your fingers a workout in the process of creating it. When your hair is brushed smooth, take a fistful of hair from the upper rear of your crown and divide into sections A and B, which will never meet. Grab a small bunch of hair off your temple from one side of your head, which we’ll call C. Weave C under A and over B. Then grab a small gob of hair from the opposite temple, add it to C and weave back under B and over A. Keep repeating 5-6 times back and forth for a partial up-do or right to the nape of the neck if you want to gather all your hair.

A simple, yet elegant type of braid forms down the middle of the back of your head, while also leaving a trail of loose hair down your back. Wherever you finish the braid, secure strands A, B & C together where you end with an elastic band and maybe a ribbon or other decoration. You can add volume to the roll of braid on each side by gently inserting your finger at the top of each braid roll and pulling out to the desired size. The look is sophisticated from the rear and off your face from the front, which is perfect for any number of prom night activities.

Here’s another braided half-up style called Twisted Crown. Prepare a clean, brushed and possibly curled head of hair to start. Gather the hair from your forehead to your temple on each side (one at a time) and create loose braids of about one inch wide. This will assure your hair is off your face so you don’t have to worry about it falling in your soup at dinner or blocking your view during your wild moves on the dance floor later. Lightly pull the braids back and twist them over each other at the back of your head just below the crown. You can either secure with an elastic band at the loop point or combine the two braids into one by braiding them together when they meet at the back of your head. Then fasten.

Choose a style that flatters both your face shape and hair type as well matching appropriately with your outfit or overall ‘look’. And possibly you’ll need to take weather conditions into account in case you have to patch things up between dinner and dancing, or whatever you get up to.

As mentioned, you want to look pretty (whatever that means to you) and you also want to be comfortable for a long night filled with a range of activities. And, of course you want to rock the inevitable photos that you and your pals will surely be snapping and posting.
For many, the most fun part is planning, scheming and dreaming with your mom, beau or gal pals ahead of the event. So go ahead! Enjoy it all from start to finish, for prom is one of those events you’ll remember your whole life. I know. I was Prom Queen! (And no one was more surprised than I was, which makes the memory all the sweeter!)

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