Whether you want to impress a date or make your partner proud…it just takes ten easy steps to be a head turner for a party. The good news is that it doesn’t cost a fortune to look fabulous as there are plenty of low cost ways to get the A-lister look. All it takes is a bit of pampering time and you’ll be the brightest star at any function.
Whether you are going to an office event, an upmarket ball or a friend’s get-together, here’s how you can spruce yourself to perfection from top to toe.
If you are apple shaped, a belted dress will flatter your body, and if you are pear-shaped, try to opt for an outfit that accentuates your top half, with pattern prints or ruffles. Or, choose a dress that shows off your toned arms or shoulders. Always opt for an outfit that skims your figure perfectly, even if it means going for a dress the next size up.
How to Budget – While a personal stylist may be out of your price range, some department stores have personal shoppers that will help steer you in the right direction. Or, you can ask a friendly shop assistant for their advice.
Going for Colour – While the little black dress is a party favourite, colour can help you stand out from the crowd. To find a dress that matches your skin tone, a top tip is to hold different fabrics close to your face and the colours that make your eyes sparkle and skin glow will be the right match for you.
How to Budget – Heading to an expensive boutique to get the latest designer outfit is a dream come true, but you may find a similar, cheaper version online. If you are cash-strapped and creative why not take a look through your wardrobe and update a tired outfit? Or, you can find some great buys in charity stores, especially if you like a vintage or retro look.
Styling Your Hair – Once you’ve found the right dress, try it on at home and experiment with different looks for your hair. Even if you have short hair, you can still find different ways of styling it, whether it is curling it, styling it inwards or flicking it outwards, brushing a fringe forward or back, or adding clips to bring sparkle.
Dresses that have prints and embellishments can be topped off with just a simple, natural style, such as leaving your hair down, or styling it with straighteners. With a plain dress you can go for a more elaborate up do, with detailing such as braid at the back of hair that is weaved into an elegant bun.
If you are experiencing female hair loss, otherwise known as alopecia, there are various ways to disguise this, such as hairpieces, diamante grips and scarves. Experiment with different looks in advance to choose one that works for you.
How to Budget – While some of you will hotfoot it to the nearest salon to put your tresses in the hands of the experts, you may want to save your cash and style it yourself, or ask a willing friend to get creative and work their magic.
Getting Perfect Skin – A regular skin care regime works wonders and creates the perfect base on which to apply your make up. So, try to get into a routine in advance of your party and steer clear of any new creams a few days before.
How to Budget – If expensive brands are not your style, local supermarkets do low cost moisturisers, or you can make your own face mask out of things you have in the kitchen such as avocado, honey, or yoghurt.
Buffing Your Body – On the day of the party, take time to shave and exfoliate, so your legs and underarms are smooth and your body glows.
How to Budget – Swap the salon wax for shaving and, instead of exfoliation creams, use a combination of sugar and olive oil to make a paste and add a touch of glitter. Just massage it into your skin for a wonderful youthful feel. Don’t forget to exfoliate your feet too; this part of your body is often neglected but a regular exfoliation will help reduce dryness and transform chapped heels.
Making Your Nails Glow – Getting the A-lister look is all in the details and having beautifully painted hands and toenails will make you stand out from the crowd.
How to Budget – If you don’t want to splash out on the professional look and have a steady hand you can either paint your own nails, or if not, draft in a willing friend to help. One way to add extra sparkle is to paint a layer of glitter varnish on top.
Creating an A-Lister Look with Make-up – The right make up techniques can take years off your true age and make you sparkle at any event.
How to Budget – While most of us can’t count a make-up artist as part of our entourage, there is a cheaper way to get a similar look. Head to a department store and book an appointment for your make-up. In most cases the price will be offset against a product purchase.
Getting it Right with Jewellery – Jewellery can make or break an outfit and the trick is to keep the look simple and balanced. A plain silver and pearl necklace will look stunning worn with a black dress with a plunging neckline.
How to Budget – If real gems are out of your price range, you can buy imitations that look just like the real thing – only you will know the difference.
Smelling Sweet with Scent – A fabulous smelling scent will create just the finishing touch that will make heads turn – but do remember less is more, and far more intriguing!
How to Budget – Department stores often give away free samples of perfumes that are great to keep in your bag for parties or weekends away. Just sampling a good quality perfume in store will often be enough for the evening ahead.
Lighting up a Room – Once you have scrubbed, buffed and preened your way to perfection there is only one thing left to do – smile. A smile works wonders and makes you look and feel confident, and the good thing is, it doesn’t cost a penny.
- Image by Smart Photo Stock
Terry O’Brien is a leading trichologist at The London Centre of Trichology, which provides diagnosis and treatment of male and female hair loss.