How To Throw a Virtual Prom

De Elizabeth

As seniors across the country finish the remainder of the academic year online amid the coronavirus pandemic, virtual celebrations for prom and graduation are becoming more common. Perhaps you’ve already attended one or two online events (Teen Vogue’s very own Virtual Prom was undoubtedly a night to remember), or maybe you’ve yet to take the plunge. In either case, why not plan your own virtual prom? It’s easier than you might think.

If you’ve been toying with the idea of throwing your own prom or formal dance party, Teen Vogue’s comprehensive guide below will have you covered. We’ve put together a list of everything you’ll need — from the right app to the perfect mood lighting — in order to plan your very own unforgettable prom right from your bedroom. All you need are your besties, your favorite tunes, and you’re good to go.

First things first, decide on a platform.

Given that many folks are attending school and work online right now, there are a lot of video call platforms to choose from:

Zoom can host up to 100 participants on a free plan, but there’s a time limit of 40 minutes. In order to get more time, your host will need at least a Pro Plan, which is $14.99 a month.

FaceTime is another option, but only available for iPhone and Apple users. If your entire crew has Apple products, this might be a good pick, as it allows up to 32 connected devices at once.

Houseparty might be ideal for the groups who want to play games at your prom, but only allows 8 people in a “room.”

Next, plan the playlist.

You won’t want to worry about the music in the moment, so it’s a good idea to plan out an extensive playlist beforehand. If you don’t feel like making your own, Spotify has a ton of user-generated playlists for prom, or you could use the 50-song “Quarantine Prom” playlist from Ariana Grande and Justin Bieber. Teen Vogue also has a list of our top ten prom songs, which you can check out here.

Create some ambiance.

Sure, it’s not the same as decorating an elaborate dance floor — but you can still make your bedroom look festive for prom. String lights, multicolor LED lights, or a star projector will give your room the perfect mood lighting (and could come in handy for filming TikToks later). Not in the mood to set up elaborate lights? Go for a festive backdrop instead.

Sky Lite

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Firefly String Lights

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Prom 2020 Backdrop Digital Download by BestiePrintables

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Now, the look.

Perhaps the most important question of the evening: What am I going to wear?! If you already picked out your prom dress earlier in the year, you probably have the answer covered; if not, check out our guide to buying your gown online.

You’ll also want to decide on accessories, makeup, hair, and nails — all of which will probably be slightly different from what you’d wear to an IRL prom. For tips, take a look at some of our style guides below!

Do a pre-prom photo shoot.

If you were going to a “real” prom, you would definitely take formal photos beforehand — so don’t skip this part! Grab your ring light and get posing.

Neewer Ring Light Kit

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Clip on Selfie Ring Light

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Selfie Ring Light with Tripod Stand

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Neewer Ring Light Kit

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Plan an after-party.

The fun doesn’t have to end when the playlist does; you can have a virtual after-party too. Maybe you and your besties change into your comfiest sweats, grab your favorite face masks, and watch your favorite movie over FaceTime. Or perhaps you stay up late reminiscing about your favorite moments of high school — and what you plan to do when you can safely hang out IRL once again. The possibilities — and ways to have fun — are endless.

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Originally Appeared on Teen Vogue