One-Night Stand Do's And Don’ts (So It Doesn't Get Messy And Weird)

Don't waste a fantastic one night by making these mistakes.

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How many times have you been on the verge of having a one-night stand but pulled out because you didn’t quite know how to behave?

Believe it or not, you’re not alone. Hookups are very likely the most confusing part of the dating world!

While it’s true that one-night stands don’t really have a set of rules that apply to everyone, there are still some basic do's and don’ts that should help you get the most out of your night.


Remember, even though you’re very likely to never see the other person again, you don’t want to leave a bad impression.

Still confused?

Keep reading on to learn more about one-night stand do's and don'ts:

1. Don’t: Have a one-night stand with a friend.



Hooking up for the night with someone you know well is generally considered a very bad idea. Chances are, you’ll wake up full of regret and your friendship will never quite be the same ever again.

On top of that, things get even messier if one of you happens to catch feelings for the other. Do you really need to sleep with someone when there are millions of other people out there?

Besides, if the two of you really liked each other that much, you’d probably be dating by now.

2. Do: Give online dating a try.

There are thousands of websites for one-night stands, as well as a ton of other dating apps. Don’t shy away from using them to your full benefit!  


A good rule to follow would be to always look for a person you find physically attractive but wouldn’t really date in the long run.

3. Don’t: Assume they said, "Yes".

Never — and that really means never — assume someone wants to have sex with you just because they were flirting with you or showing signs of affection.

Sometimes, no matter how many times your eyes meet for the night or how steamy the make out session gets, it may just as well mean exactly that — innocent fun and nothing more.

4. Do: Ask first.



Instead of assuming, ask first. No one worth your time will get offended by the question.

Make sure the other side is clearly aware of your intentions for the night — you wouldn’t want to be misleading with anything.

Only when you’ve gotten a clear "yes", feel free to make your move.

5. Don’t: Have unprotected sex.

Assuming that the other side will take care of the birth control or that they already have is one of the worst things you can do when it comes to one-night stands.

Apart from pregnancy issues, STDs are a real thing. You wouldn’t want to go home with one, would you? Since you don’t really know the person you’ll be sleeping with, it’s up to you to take care of your health.  


6. Do: Use protection at all times.

Always, always use protection when you’re having a one-night stand.

If you know you might be getting lucky that night, grab a pack of condoms before heading out. However, if things get heated up unexpectedly — let’s say, you met someone you’re really into at the local bar — stop by and grab protection on your way home.

Any other way, skip the sex — the risk just isn’t worth it.

RELATED: Your Guide To One-Night Stand Birth Control (Because Awkward)

7. Don’t: Be shy.



The harsh truth is that being shy during a one-night stand will only ruin the fun for one person — yourself.

While getting naked in front of a stranger is definitely not something everyone is comfortable with, it won’t help if you’re ashamed, regardless of whether it's your looks, preferences, fantasies, and so on.

8. Do: Be open about your preferences.

Instead of keeping quiet about your likes and dislikes, be as vocal as possible — you’re there to have sex, and preferably a lot of good sex!

Since the other person doesn’t know you as much, feel free to guide them through. Let them know what turns you on, what positions are your favorite or whether there’s something you’d like to try out but haven’t really gotten the chance yet.


If you still have trouble relaxing around them, think of it in this way — they wouldn’t be there with you if they didn’t like you in the first place, right?

9. Don’t: Think something more will come out of it.

A one-night stand usually lasts as long as the name itself suggests — one night only.

Hooking up for the night with someone you’ve liked for a while with the hopes that something more will come out of it is a real recipe for disaster. That may be happening on the big screen but things don’t work that way in real life.

Watch the Experts from SAS for Women talk about whether one night stands can lead to relationships.

10. Do: Realize it’s for the night only.


In order to have a blast and go home with a smile on your face, you’d have to come to terms with the fact that hookups aren’t meant to grow into relationships later on. They exist only for two adults to have consensual sex together — and that’s about it!

Of course, there are stories of a relationship blooming afterward, but be honest with yourself — how many times has that happened to you? Actually, most of the time you won’t even see the other person ever again.


That’s why it’s for the best to skip the deep talk and instead, keep things light and casual.


RELATED: 21 One Night Stand Horror Stories That Are So Awkward It HURTS


11. Don’t: Sneak out afterward

Even though you shouldn’t be forming any emotional attachment with your partner for the night, sneaking out after you’re done with everything is rude and disrespectful.

Don’t freak out around them later on. They’re not a mortal enemy of yours, they’re just someone you had sex with!

12. Do: Act mature.

Instead, ask if they’d like to stay over for the night and if they do, offer them the shower and some breakfast in the morning — it’s the only right thing to do and they’re very likely to appreciate it.


If the two of you had a bit more to drink and part ways after you’re done for the night, make sure the other side gets home safely.

And last but certainly not least, thank them for the good time! It’s a sign of respect and it just shows that you’re mature enough to handle one-night stands in an appropriate way.


Shawn Yale is a voice for the voiceless in the LGBTQIA community and has been writing for over a decade on topics related to the successes, suppression, and insecurities faced by the community.