Homecoming, or Miss America?

By: Emily Sparks

September 23, 2016; 4:08 pm

Homecoming night. One of the many nights teenage girls (and some boys) look forward to during  their high school careers. This one night, for most girls, contains  poofy dresses, elegant hair, and makeup to die for. During homecoming season, some girls dream of the perfect dress and amazing hair, and when they walk through the door it seems like they have achieved this just  effortlessly.

But, what really goes into getting ready for homecoming? To prepare for homecoming, girls go through planning, deciding, and then achieving a wonderful look for  a wonderful night. But what really are all the steps that girls go through to prepare for this one night of elegance and dance?

Well, here we are going to break it into 3 simple steps:

  1. Dresses and shoes
  2. Hair, nails, and makeup
  3. Plans  

The first and most important thing about a girl’s  homecoming is the dress. Some girls want to find a dress that will make her feel beautiful and happy, and others want one they can dance and have a good time in. Although this may sound like a simple task, it is far from that; to find the perfect dress, girls may go to one store, but they also might go to five. Sometimes the hunt for a dress can be long, strenuous, and stressful; even though they may try on dress after dress none of them make her stand in the mirror and smile a cheesy smile, and if it doesn’t make you  want to  wear it right out of the store that day, it isn’t the one. This may be hard for people to understand because they’re like “it’s just a dress for one night.” But this one night is special to so many high school girls; I mean, how often is it socially acceptable to dress like a princess?  

Once a girl has found her perfect dress, it is a relief but the outfit hunt isn’t over. Now that they have the dress, they need to find shoes that compliment the dress.  This process might consist of a series of decisions; whether she wants to wear flats, heels, suede, gloss, sparkles, bright colors, neutral colors, comfort soles that can be worn again, or painful pointy toes that we wear just for appearance’s sake. Shoes may seem like a minor detail but a shoe can make or break the perfect outfit, and they might ruin your night with discomfort. So before underestimating the importance of shoes just know the perfect shoes do exist; let the shoe hunt begins!

Now that she has both her dress and shoes, she is ready to plan out her hair, nails, and makeup. This step consists of being the Pinterest queen and making a board titled “Homecoming 2016” (ladies, don’t lie, as HoCo queens, we’ve all done it). On this board, she will pin enough updos, curls, and smokey eyes to provide ideas for the whole school. Sooner or later she will have to eliminate her pins down to her favorite ones picking the perfect combinations for her look and for her outfit.

Now for the nail salon. We all know how stressful going to get our nails done for dances is (especially if you’re like me with athletic, ugly feet). It can cause all sorts of stress wondering what they will think of your bitten off, maybe ungroomed nails that have not had a manicure in two year, or the 3 month old nail polish you haven’t taken off yet. Either way a whole lot of planning goes into finding the perfect beauty matches and achieving them. To achieve the perfect beauty look they will try to match the colors in the dress, but also wear the amount of makeup or nail detail that makes them feel comfortable on the night of homecoming.

Last, but surely not least, is the planning and executing of the whole day/night. How come school days go by so slowly, but on the Saturday of Homecoming there just doesn’t seem to be enough hours of the day (not just because the ladies need their beauty sleep)? This is because in one day we are supposed to cram in sleep, nails, hair, makeup, pictures, dinner, and have a rocking night! To do this girls will wake up at a decent hour eat some breakfast and attack the day like it’s “shark week.”  By this, I mean we will go from one thing to another until all perfection is achieved, and probably not eat until dinner that night. By cramming all this into one day, girls may lose a little sanity, but it is all worth it when they look in the mirror and smile that cheesy smile while wearing the dress they have been waiting weeks to wear.

So the next time you see a girl who  looks wonderful at homecoming, think about what it took to make that happen and tell her she looks beautiful, because that night she might only be at your hometown homecoming, but she probably feels like Miss America.

Although this article does not describe every girl on the night of your high school homecoming, many girls do find it to be a very special night where they are there own homecoming queen. These girls do not need a sash or crown to make it a special night because when they look in the mirror, they feel beautiful and happy. And to those HoCo queens out there, I say you go girl!


Photo taken by Emily Sparks


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