The dance dressing room is a mecca of excitement and nerves, tulle and jewels, lipsticks and falsies. But with so much going on, it can start to get a bit too crazy. Here are seven dressing room hacks that'll help you stay cool in the chaos—and give your best performance yet.
1. Use a tack gun as an emergency tailor.
Fraying strap? Not a problem. Split seam? Not a problem. Broken clasp? Not a problem. Be ready for any costume emergency with this life-saving tool that shoots discrete yet sturdy plastic tacks (like those connecting tags to your new clothes) through fabric in a snap.
2. Use peppermint oil as a personal air freshener.
With so many stinky feet, sweaty dancers, and well-worn costumes around, dressing rooms can smell pretty gross. Overwhelmed by the odors? Place a dab of peppermint oil under your nose or on the insides of your wrists. Instantly, that's all you'll be smelling. Plus, peppermint oil opens airways, cuts nausea, and boosts energy—a win-win situation.
3. Save your performance hair with a T-shirt tube top.
After spending who knows how long on the perfect hairdo, why mess it up by pulling a shirt over your head? Don't risk the wispies—instead, wear your shirt in a whole new way. Hold a long sleeve T-shirt by the cuffs in front of your chest. Wrap the sleeves around your back, return them to the front, tie a knot under your chest, and ta da! You're clothed—and your hair is still perfect.
4. Drink pickle juice as a pick-me-up.
No, this is not a prank! Studies show that the high levels of vinegar in pickle juice can minimize muscular cramps, triggering a reflex that helps your muscles relax. If the idea of drinking straight pickle juice is too hard to bear, bring some pickles as a salty snack or sneak them into your pre-show meal.
5. Use your mug as a tidy-upper.
With q-tips, band-aid wrappers, and twisted bobby pins flying everywhere, your station is bound to get a little messy. Use a large mug as a catch-all to keep the mess in check and your area—and mind—a little clearer. (Plus, you'll be set when you need a caffeine fix.)
6. Make mirror lights your warming plate.
Those picture-perfect dressing room lights that frame your station are good for more than just dressing-room photo ops. Use their heat to keep coffee, tea, or food a littler warmer while you finish off your smoky eye. (On the flip, avoid putting any pressurized products, like hairspray, or paper products near the hot bulbs.)
7. Use toe tape as a personalization tool.
With so many people in one room, belongings often get mixed up. Use toe tape to label things like bottles, makeup, and chargers. Label costumes by making a little tape flag around the hanger. You can also use toe tape to personalize your station, sticking silly polaroids and inspirational notes on your mirror.