Simple tips for when the moment strikes!
Hookups are exciting and fun but can also be a bit nerve-wracking. Everyone worries if their apartment is clean enough, if they look okay, or if the experience will be satisfying or a disappointment.
Benjamin Franklin said it best: When you fail to plan, you plan to fail.
And while we can’t guarantee you a great partner, we can guarantee you a great game plan. Adding these steps to your routine can boost your confidence and comfort in whatever situation you find yourself in.
Know and Share Your STI Status
Whether it is a one night stand or you’re having your first encounter with someone you’re seeing, before you have any kind of sexual contact with a new person, you should disclose your sexual history and STI status and expect the same from them. So, be honest, even if disclosing your health information might feel a bit awkward.
It violates consent if you are not forthcoming with this information. Anything that might affect someone’s desire to have sex with you is something you must share, so get tested regularly and have your results on hand.
Teen Vogue recommends getting tested for STIs every six months if you’re having sex with more than one person in the same time frame. But even if you’re only with one partner, it’s good practice to get tested afterward so that when you meet someone new, you have an accurate understanding of your own health.
This keeps you and your partner safe, as a lingering and untreated STI can have serious health ramifications. In addition, being proactive about your sexual health allows you to have a more fun, more fulfilling, and longer-lasting sex life.
Get Cleaned Up
Good hygiene is always important, especially if you’re exposing intimate parts of your body to another person. Planned Parenthood recommends people wash with warm water and mild soap to keep their genital area clean and healthy. Be thorough, but don’t be aggressive. You just want to ensure everything is in good shape before you link up.
Shave if you want to, but don’t feel any pressure to. Also, this is one of the few times that it's best to skip brushing your teeth. This is because when you floss, brush your teeth, or shave, you might give yourself a micro-cut. An open wound can be a breeding ground for bacteria, so it is recommended that you forgo anything that might cause you to get a micro-cut (or even a regular sized one) immediately before sex.
If there is a chance for anal play, you ABSOLUTELY need to prepare the anus for play. The anus is not like the vagina or mouth; it requires more attention to clean and prepare. If you are open to the idea of anal play, read up on all things butt stuff here.
We also recommend wearing clean clothes, so you feel your best. Remember to wear what makes you feel comfortable, whether that is a button-down and khakis or sweats with skimpy lingerie underneath.
Condoms. Lube. Anything you may want or need, make sure you have it on hand.
The last thing anyone wants is to be in the heat of the moment and then have to drop everything and make a run to the nearest convenience store. Instead, come prepared. Either—or both—partners can keep contraceptives and lubrication on hand for these kinds of things. The worst that happens is you have extra condoms and lube, which is never a bad position to be in.
You don’t need an excuse to be prepared, either. Spur-of-the-moment decisions happen, and having lubrication/contraceptives/whatever you need to feel comfortable allows you to make fun choices and choices that align with your best interests. Your future self will thank you.
Lastly, and most importantly, enjoy yourself. Be vocal about what you like and what you don’t. Be forthcoming about your expectations and what you want out of this encounter, and ask your partner to share their expectations, too. This lays the groundwork for interpersonal trust (always important) and consent (always required).
When you’re clear about what is and is not okay, your partner has all the information they might need to be considerate toward you. You can cut down on miscommunications, awkwardness, hurt feelings, and general bad vibes, all with a simple conversation.
Now that you have your hookup checklist, get swiping, or however you pick someone up these days and have fun!
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