Choosing the Right Outfit for School Dances

Tips on what to wear and not to wear

by Valeria Torres (Staff Writer) – 11/4/15

Formal dresses of different styles that could be used for school dances
Formal dresses of different styles that could be used for school dances

Selecting the right outfit, hair-do, and makeup for a school dance is an elaborate process, but it all depends on the type of event and the person’s preference. Every individual dance requires certain attire, sometimes more formal than others.

Popular school events such as homecoming or Sadie Hawkins, amongst others, are sometimes held at their own gym, quad, or auditorium which slightly decreases the formality of the clothing. While dress shopping for this event many variables must be taken into consideration such as the color of it and how it fits. For example, if homecoming is taking place at the school, a dress more on the casual side is appropriate with a few sparkle or rhinestones. Black, white, or even gold color short dresses are recommended. However, long dresses are to be saved for more formal occasions such as prom.

The dress choice for a school dance taking place in a fancy venue or banquet

hall like winter formal and prom is more formal, and it’s appropriate to accessorize more, exaggerate on the hair and makeup, and wear nicer high heels. When choosing the right dress for winter formal, the colors that are the most traditional are dark shades such as navy blue, black, dark grey, maroon, etc.

Also, long sleeve dresses are more common during this season due to the cold. However, one must choose a dress to feel comfortable and for one’s best traits to be enhanced. If one doesn’t feel comfortable wearing skin tight, short dresses, then it’s best to get a more loose fitted dress. Heels are meant to contrast the color of the dress such as black dress with red heels, or maroon dress with black heels. But the heels are highly advised to be comfortable and not too tall.

The length of the dress depends on the type of event, however long dresses are not common at homecoming or winter formal dances but rather at prom. And the accessories depend on the design of the dress. If the dress already has a lot of rhinestones or glitter, especially on the top, then only earrings are required or a simple bracelet. However, if the dress is a solid color with really no sparkle or gems, then a nice necklace should be worn for the neck to not seem empty and to flatter the dress.

Another important component to consider when choosing the type of dress a person wants is the school’s specific dress code. As junior Jennifer Gonzales explained, “When I go dress shopping I always keep in mind that the dress can’t be too revealing, meaning being extremely short, or showing too much cleavage, etc.” This is significant because these type of incidents and troubles want to be avoided by girls as it would be a shame to have to change outfits during the dance or even worse, go home.

Makeup is a huge component to the final look, but since these events usually take place at night, darker shades are recommended. For example, a smoky eye shadow and a nude color lipstick complement each other. However, if one does light eye shadow, then a darker shade of lipstick is more appropriate, like a red-wine.

The choice of a dress, makeup, and heels all depends on the taste of the person as all these recommendations don’t specifically apply to everyone.