Prom nights have been existing indefinitely and so has the fad for the trendiest prom dresses. Fashion trends directly impact the choices people make for their prom. So to study this intriguing evolution lets travel back in time and see different eras.

Prom Trends in the 80s

The 80s was an interesting era for fashion. A lot of different styles emerged which may seem too whacky now.

  • Iridescent: Shiny dresses with holographic patterns and iridescent was the fad of the late 80s. Girls were spotted sporting this over-the-top fashion trend. With an iridescent dress at hand, you could conquer the world.
  • Bright Pink with Scoop Neck: Following the iridescent came the bright Barbie pink. The gaudier the pink the better it was. And perfectly complimenting these bright pinks were the scoop necks. Scoop necks have almost disappeared from the scene of prom dresses 2019.

Prom Trends in the 90s

The 90s was the pinnacle of fashion. This era denoted the beautiful marriage of comfort and chic style. 90s fashion is so well celebrated that it has made a comeback in 2018 and potentially 2019.

  • Puffy Sleeves: Puffy sleeves were the great big fashion success of the early 90s fashion. These gigantic sleeves when paired with a tight bodice and flowy trail made for a dream dress.
  • Belted Waists: Another fashion which may seem horrendous now was the fashion of belted waists. This belt created an illusion of a small waist, while the lower part of the dress was kept puffed up. Imagine belted waists with puffy sleeves, Gah! Who knows, this may even have a comeback.
  • Chokers and Lace Bodice: The famous fashion which made a mega comeback in 2017-18 was chokers. Chokers were another craze in the 90s and they were usually paired with lace bodices. This fashion may not seem too different from the current scenarios.
  • Velvet: Velvet was another crowd favorite dress material which exited upon the arrival of the 2000s. It was very much prevalent in the late 90s.
  • Pink & Spaghettis: Much like the 80s, the pinks made a re-entry. But this time these shades were much subdued. Along with pinks, spaghetti straps also made a mega entry into the late 90s. They are very much still present to this date.

Prom Trends in the 2000s

  • Shawls: Furry shawls, regardless of if they provided any shield from cold weather, became a new trend. Girls everywhere were seen rocking a shawl with her dress.
  • Cowl Neck: Cowl necks were yet again a timeless fashion trend. From celebrities to singers everyone was rocking a cowl neck.
  • Drop Shoulder: This sexy style was predominant in the mid-2000s. Drop Shoulders and cold shoulders made girls look instantly sexy, hence the love for it.
  • Strapless Dress: Lo and Behold! Strapless Prom Dresses are here. These were accompanied by sweetheart necks, body-con styles, and tight bodices.

Prom Trends in the 2010s

Talking about the 2010s, there have been many developments in this decade which nearing an end as well. The era saw lots of rhinestones, sequins, neutral tones, leg slits, and high low style of prom dresses. Prom dresses 2019 will have new crazy fads to present as well.

Girls have begun to prefer simple accessories and elegant outfits. They avoid wearing heavy jewelry or makeup and instead prefer to go for naked makeup looks. Typically, they prefer the gowns in soft pastel colors such as blush pink or pastel green. In addition, they accessorize their gowns or dresses with jewelry such as a simple ring or small studs in the ears, or charm bracelets (see this page).

As we move into the 2020s, we’re likely to see a continuation of this minimalist aesthetic. Our trend predictions say that for prom fashion, girls are going to lean into nude, elegant styles over the loud and colorful aesthetics. We’re likely to see a lot of monochrome, and a decrease in the use of patterns and outlandish colors. Girls are also likely to stick to more natural makeup looks, choosing to highlight their natural features and pair their elegant dresses with the right accessories, simple and glowy makeup, and an elaborate hairstyle. They can also top it off with some shimmer, and a hint of pear perfume.


In conclusion, the ever-evolving world of prom fashion has taken us on a captivating journey through the decades. From the 80s with its iridescent and bright pink dresses to the 90s that brought us puffy sleeves, belted waists, and chokers, and into the 2000s with shawls, cowl necks, and strapless styles, each era has left its unique imprint on the prom dress landscape. As we entered the 2010s, we witnessed a shift towards simplicity, with a preference for soft pastel colors and understated accessories. Throughout this evolution, one thing remains constant: the enduring allure of style. Fashion trends may come and go, but the statement you make with your prom dress is timeless.

This journey through the annals of prom fashion history reminds us that personal style is an art that transcends time. As we anticipate the upcoming Prom dresses of 2019 and the years after, it’s clear that the world of fashion will continue to surprise and inspire us. So, whether you’re stepping out in a vintage throwback or embracing the latest trend, remember that your unique style will always be the ultimate fashion statement.

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