Proms, or promenades as they are formally know, originated in the universities back in the 19th century as a celebration for their graduates. Over the years, proms have transformed and now take place as early as high school, including junior high. Formal attire is still customary, but fashion trends continuously change through the decades. Another alteration to the proms of yesteryear is that while proms of the past tended to be mainly enjoyed by couples, now it is socially acceptable to go solo or join a group of friends. Some prom concepts remain constant, such as ball rooms and limo transportation. However, one of the newer changes on the prom scene is the movement toward the environmentally conscious prom, also known as the eco prom.
Fortunately, more and more teenagers are becoming aware of the dangers of climate change and are willing to tackle the problem through lifestyle changes. Prom is a great chance to showcase how easy it is to have a formal and traditional event while still being green. Follow the tips below to have an Eco prom, whether you choose to go simple or all out elegant.
This is a 100% hemp knit gown handcrafted by a famed Danish knitter in sweatshop-free Europe. Priced at $299 at the time of this posting. Visit Rawganique for details on this dress and others.
Makeup and Nails: Skip the fakes. Mock nails and false eyelashes are unsafe for the environment and the toxins are very unhealthy for you. Go natural and let your own beauty shine, or use all natural products. Mineral makeup, natural eyeliner, natural mascara, natural lipstick, and natural nail polish can all enhance your appearance without hurting you or the Earth. Abe’s Market is a great online marketplace for natural products from different vendors who list all of their ingredients so you can make an informed choice.
Purses: You most likely want your purse to match your shoes or your outfit, or maybe you distinctly don’t want to match at all and go with sharp contrast. Either way, the purse is another one of those items that you will most likely leave at the table and forget about until the dancing is done. If you are planning on leaving your purse unattended, please be sure not to keep any identification, keys, cash, credit cards, or jewelry inside it. Keep a small personal bag that you can wear on your body with these essential items. A clutch is usually the most chosen bag for prom due to its size, but it also is one of the most inconvenient since you need to hold it (clutch it) in your hand at all times (hence the name, clutch). A purse with small handles that can hang on your shoulder right under your arm may be better for dancing. A cross body purse is also relatively comfortable and depending upon the style, can accessorize your gown. However, for the most part, your purse is not going to be comfy on the dance floor, so strap your important things to your thigh with a thigh purse or garter purse and if you have more items, keep those in a bigger bag at the table or coat check. Rather than spend money on a one time use purse, choose a sustainable option that can be used long term, and look for items made from organic cotton, hemp, and even recycled yoga mats (see below). And, obviously, locally made, locally sourced, and fair trade are a given when purchasing purses.
Jewelry: Jewelry is tricky, especially once you learn about blood diamonds or conflict diamonds. There are ethical jewelers out there, though, so you can find the perfect sparkle for your dress. Most jewelry can be worn again with other outfits, so pick something you like and just make sure it comes from a pure source. You can also get necklaces, bracelets, and earrings made from lab created (synthetic) gemstones, recycled glass, recycled vinyl, and hemp.
Going Green Limousine, Chicago Prom Limo for up to 20 passengers in our Cadillac Escalade stretch SUV (pictured above). Four hour split charter prom packages available. Charters include complimentary soda and bottled water. Stemware is provided. Make your reservations by phone at 773-295-5959 or online at Going Green Limousine.
There are many ways to have a green prom. We would love to hear some other ideas you have to help make proms more environmental without reducing the emotional impact of this very special evening. I look forward to hearing from you.