Afterparty Essentials

By Sharon Naylor

April 7, 2014 5 min read

Prom celebrations don't always end when the lights come up and the music stops. For many teens, the fun keeps going at an afterparty, whether it's at a friend's home or the popular option of everyone going late-night bowling or to a mini-golf center for play and pizza. Whatever the party plan, teens may opt to stay in their dressy prom outfits (getting plenty of attention from those around them) or they'll change into a celebrity-inspired second outfit for the night.

"I didn't want to ruin my dress since it cost so much and I wanted to wear it again," says high school senior Claire Davidson. "And I wanted to be comfortable, so my afterparty outfit was skinny jeans, boots and a sequined white top."

White is a leading trend in prom afterparty outfits, say the editors of Seventeen magazine. Depending on the material -- silky, sequined or cashmere -- white can look dressy, chic, flirty or romantic. And, the editors suggest, a white dress can be used as a graduation dress to save money.

Here are the leading prom afterparty outfit trends, as reported by Seventeen and Teen Vogue:

--Black and white. Inspired by teen celebrities' looks, a white skirt and black top, such as a sequined sleeveless top or a black halter, is a leading look. And the black-and-white fashion trend is also making a strong showing in graphic prints such as florals on the top or as an all-over motif.

--Florals. Speaking of florals, a short dress in a pretty pink and hot pink floral, or any summery shade such as orange, bright yellow, aqua blue and other shades is party-perfect and easy to wear again and again.

--Sparkle. Marcella Sky, editor-in-chief of fashion blog "Wrk It Girl," says, "Sparkle is a top prom trend," and teens are wearing sparkle in the form of beaded edges on tops and in their accessories such as their shoes and handbags, which complements a sophisticated black, white or black-and-white second look.

--Cutouts. Teens are advised by fashion experts and trend reporters to "go small" with cutouts to a dress. Don't aim for a too-sexy look, but offer just a tiny cutout at the neckline or on the sides of the waist to show off curves without looking too suggestive. Seventeen's editors advise having a cutout only in one area for a classy look

--Animal print. A dress or top with leopard spots, cheetah or zebra stripes, evokes a Katy Perry-esque fashion statement, and teens who weren't allowed to wear a full-animal-print dress can incorporate the wild look on a much smaller scale as part of their post-prom party style. Even an animal-print handbag or pair of shoes can add that pop of pattern with jeans and a dressy black top. "My prom dress was soft, pink, romantic and pretty -- everything I wanted, and then I wanted a second look that was completely different from that, so I stepped out in an animal print skirt and white top that I saw on Pinterest," says high school junior Emma SanFilippo. "I totally wowed my date and my friends!"

--Goth glam. The goth look might be the uniform of a high-school clique, but it's also a fashion "do" this season, with teens giving dark colors a sophisticated twist in slate gray, dark green, dark purple, deep navy and black. Lace is a top fashion look for spring and summer, and in a goth-inspired twist, dark lace adds texture to a top, skirt or overall dress style. Add matching dark lace heels or shiny black heels and dark metal jewelry, and the look is complete.

--Metallic. Shimmery tops in metallic gunmetal, bronze, copper or silver add some late-night sparkle to a top worn with a skirt or jeans. Metallic embellishments to boots add the finishing touch to this trendy afterparty look.

--Bright colors. Teens who want to stand out love bright, vibrant colors such as neon orange, yellow, red and other shades. Bold hues in dresses let the wearer stay "dressed up" with a second look that stands out. Spring and summer fashion trends overall this year include neons in graphic patterns, stripes, florals and in '80s-inspired party-girl ruffles that can be a fun look for a teen attending a house party or even wanting to stand out as the party host.

Fashion trends aside, many teens want to be comfortable after the prom, so jeans are often the basis of many post-prom outfits. Teens know that they'll be in many photos taken at the afterprom party, and will show up often on social media sites, so they want to look their best. Some teens will even choose a less expensive prom dress so that they can buy a stylish afterparty outfit. Reality star Kylie Jenner recently remarked that for her prom look, she would raid her sister Khloe's closet for shoes to dress up an outfit without spending anything. That's a second look style tactic that many teens take when planning their post-prom outfits and accessories, adding to the excitement of rocking not just one fabulous look on prom night but two.

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