Before your favorite celebrities graced events such as the Met Gala, Oscars or Grammys with their designer looks they attended the less coveted “red carpet” event of prom. Yes, stars they’re just like us, and the proof is in these gloriously awkward throwback photos of our favorite famous faces dressed to impress for this celebrated high-school tradition.
On this list you’ll find some pretty staggering transformations from cringy to glamorous, whereas other lucky ducks were fortunate enough to avoid their awkward phase and look as if they haven’t aged a day. Scroll down below to find your favorite stars throwback look and don’t forget to vote!
Prom is now synonymous with the high-school experience but the first recorded prom in history took place at Amherst College where male students invited female students from Smith College to dine and dance back in 1894. The dance evolved into a high-school tradition in the 1900s and was nationwide by the 1930s.
One of the traditional etiquettes of prom is for the boy to give the girl a bundle of flowers called a corsage for her wrist or to be pinned to the top of her dress. In the past, the corsage was placed on the hip. The term “corsage” actually means “bodice” which dates back to the 19th century with French origins, so the former positioning makes more sense.
Most celebrities had their prom experience before fame, but that was before the trend of inviting celebrity guests was born. In 1963, President Kennedy was not invited but unintentionally crashed the prom of John Burroughs High School. The politician scheduled a $1,000-a-plate fundraiser in the largest room at the Beverly Hilton Hotel but as it turns out, the students had already booked the same room two years prior. JFK gave up the larger room to the students and settled for a slightly smaller one for his event. In an act of goodwill, he stopped by to say hello to the teens accompanied by comedian Jack Benny.
While the average high-schooler may have to settle for a decked out gymnasium for their annual prom, the wealthier schools (where celebrities attend) might get glitzier options. In 1975, Susan Ford, the daughter of President Gerald Ford, got permission to throw her prom in the White House. The President was away in Europe at the time so the dance was chaperoned by the Secret Service.
One can only imagine the amount of money celebrity teens are dishing out for prom but even for the average American, the costs can be outrageous. When you add up the tickets, dress cost, tux rental, limos, and other common prom expenses, parents have paid an average of around $900 for their high-schoolers to attend these events. In 2013, the average peaked at $1,139 – those are some red carpet numbers.
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