Big Night, Small Budget: 11 Ways to Make it Work
Clear Your Skin
Rent a Runway Look
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Brighten Your Teeth
Get a Spray Tan
1. Familiarize yourself with the product beforehand. "Get used to the application technique, and the way the product interacts with your skin to cut down on any surprises," says Locke. And for the best results, apply your tan two full days before the big event.
2. Prepare accordingly. "Exfoliate, shave, and make sure your skin is completely dry," says Locke. Put a towel on the floor, wear gloves to avoid staining your palms, and start working your way up from your feet.
3. More is more. "It's really about making sure you have even coverage," she says. "It's very hard for your tan to be uneven if you over-apply. You're more likely to be uneven if you under-apply." If you're using a product like St. Tropez Self Tan Bronzing Spray ($34, sttropeztan.com), the excess cosmetic bronzer will wash away in the shower and leave you with smooth and uniform coverage.
Find the Right Support
1. Buy your size. "You have to ask yourself what issue you want to address," says Blakely. "Women think that smaller sizes offer more secure support but it's better to stick to your typical size."
2. Consider your dress. For strapless styles like Sarah Jessica Parker's sexy hot pink number, Blakely recommends Spanx's strapless slip ($72, Net-a-porter.com). "It gives more coverage than just a strapless bra."
3. Go for a brand you know and like. "There's a lot of stuff out there, but nothing is worse than being uncomfortable all night."
Put Your Hair Up
Chances are, a slicked-back ponytail is probably where your experience with updos begins and ends. But according to celebrity stylist Mark Townsend, who works with January Jones, Natalie Portman, and Maggie Gyllenhaal, complicated coifs don't have to be out of reach. And no, booking him isn't the answer. The RSession Tools Pin-Up Girl Kit ($21.99, rsessiontools.com) is stocked with absolutely everything you need for stunning off-the-shoulder styles: mini bobby pins and clips, snag-free elastics and a styling comb, and even a volume-building foam hair piece. "They really give you everything you need for the perfect high or low bun, french twist or ponytail and the illustrated instructions are easy to follow," says Townsend. Even better? The kits come in Black, Blond, and Brown to help maintain the gravity-defying illusion.
Have a Makeup Plan
Pack a Tidy Clutch
Check the Mirror
Learn How to Pose
Try a Red Carpet-Worthy Cleanse
Want more? Glassman's book The O2 Diet includes detailed instructions for a four-day cleanse and you can find free tips on her twitter, @KeriGlassman.