PROM – what and how to prep for the big day!

Prom, like any event takes a lot of prep and consideration when it comes to getting ready.

In order to look our best, we have to take care of ourselves which means prepping our skin, hair, faces, the whole lot! Part of the reason why I love going out or attending an event is the lead up to it – GETTING READY! It’s the best part in my opinion, although I may be a bit biased as a hair and makeup artist.

There’s lots to think about in the run up to prom, but don’t worry, I have a guideline to everything you will need to do/think about in regards to hair and makeup! So, if you’re in need of a bit of help, keep reading!


The skin is the canvas for our makeup and even our hair. One will not look complete without the other.

So, we need to make sure that our canvas is looking its finest. I would definitely recommend in starting a skincare routine if you don’t have one already. There are 3 things to take into consideration when it comes to skin care; cleansing, moisturising and face masks.

Establish a Skincare Routine

You want to be cleansing your skin every night before you sleep. You’ve had a long day, you’ve been working hard at school, sweating away during games and PE. Chances are you’ve been touching your face non-stop during classes; your face is probably carrying a lot of dirt. Not to mention, just being out and about outside can clog up your pores.

So we obviously want to clear that all away before we go to bed! A good cleanser, or even just washing your face with water, will do just the trick. Making sure that every night before you bed you’ve washed and cleansed your face will go a long way into banishing those pesky blemishes, and giving your skin a really nice even skin tone and glow ahead of prom.

I would also recommend waking up every morning and cleansing again, or if you have sensitive skin, just washing your face with cold water. You should always splash cold water over your face after you’ve had a shower, as the hot water and steam opens up your pores, and if you leave them open they have a higher chance of catching bacteria resulting in blemishes.

Hydrated Skin is Happy Skin

Another key part of prepping your skin is moisturising. Don’t forget to lather your face with your favourite moisturiser, we want to keep our skin happy and hydrated at all times! By keeping our skin moisturised we are keeping it supple and smooth, if you don’t moisturise, the minute you apply your primer or foundation your skin will be gasping for moisture and mistake it for that. This means your base will be far from that perfect even glow you wished for. But it’s not just our face we need to moisturise, make sure you moisturise your whole body, I will explain the reasons for that later on!

Relax with a Face Mask

Last but not least in our perfect prom skin prep, is applying a good face mask. Your skin will thank you later!

A lovely one which really revitalises my skin is Sanctuary’s Charcoal mud mask. By applying this 2-3 times a week in the run up to prom, will really give your skin that extra push it needs. It’s providing your skin with all the beneficial minerals and hydration it needs all in one go, you will really see the difference.


It’s important to look after your hair, as it’s also one of the key parts of your final look!

I would recommend avoiding heat where possible, try and let your hair be as natural and healthy as possible in the run up to prom. Even though you might be using heat protectant or setting spray when you using heat styling tools, the combination of product and heat together will still dry out your hair, and it will lose its natural shine resulting in your hair looking quite dull.

This doesn’t mean if you use straighteners every day your hair won’t look lovely on the day, any good hair and makeup artist will be able to work their magic, don’t you worry! Less heat gives your hair a better chance of the best possible outcome when you look into the mirror at the end. I would also advise on investing in a good hair mask to do once a week. My personal favourite is the Coconut hair mask from ArganCare. I apply it once a week and it just gives my hair that boost of shine it needs. Coconut oil is great in so many ways for your hair and skin, there is a blog post about this coming soon and why coconut oil is a must have in your home! Keep an eye out for that.

Another key tip of mine is using a hair serum straight out of the shower. I tend to put my hair in a towel to take some of the moisture out of it, and then when it’s damp I use a pea sized amount of serum through the ends of my hair. I then run the excess through my hair from the roots to tip, but mainly focusing on the ends.

The serum locks in moisture and adds a lovely shine to your hair. It also keeps those pesky ends from splitting by keeping them nice and healthy, as they are often forgotten about. I have quite frizzy hair so if your hair type is like mine, serum is a must have as it controls the frizz and creates lovely soft waves or curls. I use a serum dedicated to controlling frizz, John Frieda FrizzEase Extra Strength serum, but be sure to use a serum depending on your hair type. There are normal serums/oils too.

Hair Removal

It’s always nice to be the best version of yourself at a big event, and for me that includes a whole day of de-fuzzing! Yes, I mean waxing/shaving.

When I attend an event I would love to be able to say “I woke up like this” but unfortunately for me that is just not the case, it takes a lot of work!

It’s important to remember whenever you are waxing or shaving, it’s best to always do this at least a day before. There are multiple reasons as to why you should leave a day, for example with waxing, you are opening up the pores. If you were to have your eyebrows waxed, the pores have been opened, and if you are then going to apply makeup after this, you are pretty much putting dirt into open pores.

We also want to let the redness calm down! After waxing, chances are there will be a little bit of redness, or on larger areas like your legs, little red dots can appear. The redness occurs as the hair has been ripped from the hair follicle and your body is in ‘repair mode’. It’s nothing to worry about, and will subside after a couple of hours.

Another reason is shaving rashes! By ensuring you shave at least the day before, you are giving the irritation time to go down. I always like to give my body at least a day to calm down and sort itself out, and go back to normal. Your skin can be slightly sensitive after waxing or shaving, so it’s best not to apply too many products to the skin right after. I would suggest you apply a good hydrating moisturiser, but avoid using anything else the day of (this includes shower gel as sometimes it can react depending how sensitive your skin is!).

Spray tans

If you’re longing for that bronzy glow, why not book yourself in a spray tan? You can either go to a salon and have it done there, or in some cases they can even come to you and do it for you in the comfort of your own home. There are a few things worth mentioning if you are thinking of getting a spray tan:

Give it time to develop

All spray tans take between 4-8 hours to fully develop. This is where the longer you leave the tan, on the darker it will go. If you leave it on for the full 8 hours it will reach its maximum colour, after 8 hours it stops developing, so don’t worry you won’t wake up looking like your wooden flooring! You then will need to wash the residue off after your 8 hours. This colour will always be darker then the colour you actually are – don’t freak out! I normally have my spray tan and then sleep in it, that way I know I’ve kept it on for 8 hours and it has fully developed. Just be aware if you have white bed sheets!

Turn up makeup free

Obviously, you want your face to be tanned along with the rest of your body, so make sure you’ve removed any makeup before you step into the tanning tent. Once your tan is on, you won’t be able to apply or remove any makeup for 8 hours, as you will take the tan off along with it! I’d also advise on not wearing deodorant, as it can act as a barrier and in some cases when your underarms get sprayed, it can turn green. Not a good look!

Remove all jewellery before hand

Make sure to remove any jewellery earrings, necklaces and rings, unless you want white marks where they are! Also, it means you won’t get your lovely jewellery dirty!

Strip off!

When getting a professional spray tan, your beauty therapist will ask you to remove all your clothing, and for the best application… this means your undies too. You will be provided with disposable underwear (normally a thong, make sure you get it on the right way!) but if you feel more comfortable you can just wear your own pair of pants. I’d recommend old ones so you don’t ruin them with the tan. You can also keep your bra on, but obviously you will then have ‘tan lines’, so it’s always best to just go braless. Don’t feel weird about it, they’ve seen it all before! We’re all girls here, and honestly your therapist is so use to they won’t bat an eyelid. Remember they are looking to make sure your spray tan is applied perfectly, they won’t even notice your boobs!

Shower and exfoliate before hand

In order to get the most perfect and even tan, it’s always best to exfoliate all your dead skin cells away. The day before your spray tan (I normally choose the night just before I head into bed!) jump in the shower and either grab your favourite exfoliating scrub, or a cheaper/easier alternative are a pair of exfoliating gloves (you can get them from any chemist or Primark!). Give your body the once over with the scrub/gloves, making sure to focus on your ankles and elbows, as these are the areas where the tan will stick to the most, and voilà! You now have the perfect base for your tan.

Wash your hair and make sure it’s dry!

If you choose to wash your hair before having a spray tan, make sure it’s completely dry! The last thing you want to have is dripping wet hair all ruining your freshly applied tan with water streaks all down your back. I normally just wait until the day of my event and wash my hair that morning, however, if you are getting your hair done by a professional, it’s always best for the hair stylist if your hair is freshly washed the night before. If that’s the case then just make sure your hair is washed and dry before your spray tan.

Moisturising = a long life

Once your spray tan has taken place, don’t forget to moisturise every day after! Not only will this keep your tan looking fresh for as long as possible, it will also keep your skin lovely and smooth too. Moisturising also helps to avoid that awkward patchy stage when the tan eventually begins to fade.

These are just a few things to bear in mind when prepping for prom/ an event. I hope this helped!

I am taking prom bookings, please feel free to get in touch and book in with me. I’d love to help you get glam for this special day!