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The Complete Prom Preparation Checklist: Your Mini-Guide to Rocking Your Prom Night

The event you’ve been dreaming about since you entered high school is official here and there is so much to do… Those memorable IG photoshoots, shopping for a stunning prom outfit, booking your hair and glam appointments, ordering your limo, planning your after-party – the list goes on and on. 

If you’re starting to get overwhelmed with the preparations ahead, don’t! Here, we’ve sketched a super clear and detailed checklist to help you organize your prom night like a pro. 

Prom Checklist for Ladies

Here’s a comprehensive checklist for ladies to prepare for prom night:

Get Your Squad Together

Before you start your preparations for prom, you’ll need a fantastic group of people you’ll be attending this dreamy event with. While some ladies choose to go with their partners, others prefer to have a blast with their friends. Whether you go with a couple of people or the whole bunch, be sure to plan your outfits beforehand. If you like the idea of having a common theme, pick a vibe, color, or statement everyone can agree on. 

Finalize Your Prom Outfit

Let’s face it ladies: More than anything, prom night is about your outfit. This year’s prom trends are all about slinky silhouettes, dreamy feminine deets like ruffles and embroidery, and fabrics like satin and lace. Don’t think twice before picking those flowy skirts to add a romantic touch to a magical evening. Don’t prefer dresses? Make a statement with rompers and jumpsuits instead!

Get Your Accessories Game Right

Once you finalize your prom dress, it’s time to get your accessories together. 

First, pick a decent pair of shoes. The equation here is simple: dresses that come with a heavy dose of color or embellishments pair well with simple heels in nude hues. On the other hand, if you’ve chosen a minimalistic prom outfit, don’t hesitate to go all out with shoes. Also, don’t forget to carry an extra pair of flats in case your feet start hurting from all that dancing. 

Other accessories you’re going to need include a statement jewelry piece (i.e. a necklace, a pair of earrings, or a bracelet), and a cute clutch (or a crossbody purse). 

Prep a Mini Prom Emergency Kit

While prom night should be all about having lots of fun and making memories, it’s important to have a little emergency kit in case you need a quick style fix. Here are a few important things to pack in a small ziplock bag:

  • A few safety pins and bobby pins 
  • Lip balm, lip gloss, and lipstick 
  • Oil-absorbing sheets 
  • Mini deodorant 
  • Tide stick (or a stain remover of your choice)

Make Your Pre-Prom Reservations

You’re going to need tons of energy to party, dance, socialize, and have the time of your life on prom night. So, make sure you eat something right before you attend the event. Reserve a table somewhere you and your squad can have something that’s filling but not too heavy – some nice options include tacos, sushi, or even burgers!

Plan Your Post-Prom Activities

By the time prom is over, you’ll be too tired to plan what to do afterward. Whether your post-prom adventures involve watching a midnight movie, having late-night pizzas, or even a sleepover at your bestie’s home – planning everything ahead will ensure you have a smooth end to one of the most beautiful nights of your life!

Prom Checklist for Gentlemen

Gentlemen, once you’ve succeeded at the promposal, the next thing is to plan the whole adventure out. Here’s your quick checklist for a perfect prom night. 

Finalize Your Outfit

While ladies have a massive selection of prom dress options to choose from, the dress code for gentlemen typically just involves a tuxedo or a dark (or black) suit. Whether you’re purchasing a brand-new suit, getting an old piece customized, or renting a tux – make sure your outfit is ready weeks in advance. Get a cool haircut a few days before prom, shower, shave, and use hair gel to look absolutely classy when the event finally arrives. 

Make the Necessary Reservations

These include pre-prom and post-prom reservations. You, your date, and your squad are going to need tons of energy before prom. And once prom concludes, you can head to a nice restaurant for a smooth end to the evening. Be sure to make these reservations as early as possible to avoid last-minute surprises. 

Figure Your Transport Out

Whether you’re picking your date using your own car, renting a limo, or borrowing your big brother’s sports car – make sure you arrange your transport at least a week before the big event. If you don’t have a license yet, you can simply rent a car with your squad. 

Make Your Corsage Pick

Tradition suggests gentlemen present a beautiful corsage to their dates on prom day. While you can easily find a corsage at a flower shop, keep in mind that the ribbon of the corsage must match your date’s outfit. So, don’t hesitate to ask her what her dress color is and make your pick accordingly.

The Ultimate Prom Prepping Timeline

What to do throughout the days leading up to prom? Here’s your answer:

A few months before prom:

  • Shop for your prom outfit 
  • Book makeup, hair stylist, and nail artist appointments
  • Determine a place to take pre-prom photos 
  • Hire a photographer 
  • Book your party bus or limo 
  • Make dinner reservations
  • Grab your prom tickets 

One month before prom:

  • Plan your pre-prom activities 
  • Plan your post-prom activities 
  • Make sure your prom outfit fits you perfectly
  • Practice wearing your heels to ensure you have a pain-free prom night
  • Plan out your accessories and jewelry 

Two Weeks before prom:

  • Confirm all your reservations and appointments 
  • Do a trial outfit, makeup, and hairstyle run 
  • Order a corsage or boutonniere
  • Shop for all the necessities. This includes random things you might need on prom day including heel pads, a special bra that works well with your outfit, socks or tights, body tape, seamless underwear, and a small emergency kit (as discussed above).

On the day of prom:

  • Gentlemen should pick up the corsage or boutonniere to give to their dates 
  • Head to your appointments 
  • Pack your purse
  • Get your overnight bag ready for post-prom sleepovers 

Make Tons of Memories!

Now that you know the A-to-Z of prepping for prom, it’s time to kickstart the process by hunting for the prom dress of your dreams! Remember, the best prom dress is the one that makes you look and feel beautiful. While prom preparations may seem a tad bit overwhelming, they’re really quite fun and absolutely worth it! So, have fun and make tons of memories!

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