Casual sex or the hookup culture hasn’t been a taboo for a long time now. A lot of people decide to be casual and not get involved emotionally, at least for some period of time. However, even if you decide to be casual, there are certain things that you need to pay attention to.

We are talking about relationships where you won’t commit emotionally, but they are still relationships, and there are rules for making them work. After all, you and your partner both want to have a fun, casual sexual relationship, without any strings attached, and for this to work, you both need to stick to some ground rules.

These rules won’t limit your relationship in any way or make it less enjoyable, they will just naturally help you find what you are looking for without getting into problems that surround committed relationships. After all, this is what you are looking to avoid by going casual.

1. Understand the Whole Casual Sex Thing

The first thing you need to do is be clear with yourself and understand what you are getting into. For many people, especially those who have never had casual sex, it can be difficult to get into that mindset and stop acting like they are in a committed relationship.

If you don’t know what you are getting into, you will suffer the consequences, it’s as simple as that. First of all, a lot of people have difficulties separating sex from their emotions and this could lead to you getting attached and not getting that emotional response from the other person. Bear in mind that your sex buddy will not prioritize you, make sacrifices, or try to help you in any way.

Compared to real relationships, hookups are superficial. They are all about sex, having fun, and not getting invested in any serious way. Don’t try to put your trust in your partner or have any expectations from them, as they won’t either.

2. Make Sure that You Are Ready for These Kinds of Relationships

Even when people understand what casual relationships mean and what they are all about, most aren’t really ready for these relationships and simply can’t go through with them. Even if they do, they don’t feel good about it and have a seemingly irrational sense of guilt.

This is why you need to ask yourself the question “Am I ready for this?” You might think that casual sex is easy, as there is no emotional involvement, but it also requires effort to shut down your emotions and don’t let your heart get in the middle of it and end up getting hurt. Sleeping with someone, then continuing your life as usual requires mental fortitude.

In fact, most people you hook up with will have no interest whatsoever in pursuing something more out of it. Even though you are hooking up with someone with a one night stand attitude, you might find them amazing and like them in every possible way but even in such situations, you need to learn to shut down those emotions.

3. Choose the Right Person

In casual sex relationships, finding the right person is as important as in romantic relationships, however, the rules for finding that person are different. In this scenario, you are not looking for a person that will be “the one” and with whom you will be spending most of your time. Instead, you are just looking for someone to have sex with without any strings attached.

This means that you should avoid people who you like for their personal characteristics, friends, or coworkers as things might get weird. The rule of thumb here is to hook up with people you don’t know so well, but still know enough that they don’t pose any threat to you.

Think about that person that you always had something for but you never considered them as you weren’t into casual sex. Well, now you are and those people are your best options. Look for people who attract you sexually and can help you fulfill your sexual fantasies while not feeling embarrassed. If not, there are always dating apps where you can hook up.

4. Always Use Protection

Young couple with condom

If you establish a long-term casual relationship, you might get to that point where you can have sex without protection, but until this happens, ALWAYS makes sure that you have safe and protected sex. In most cases, you will be hooking up with people once or twice and chances are you won’t have the time to sit down and talk about STDs before you jump on each other.

On top of that, a lot of people in the hookup culture have had many partners and this is why the chances of STDs are higher. No matter if you are a guy or a woman, always make sure to have condoms with you in case you hook up with someone.

Trust me, if you are both already in bed and you realize you don’t have protection, chances are you are going to go through with it anyway, so be prepared or you might regret your decision for the rest of your life. After all, a lot of people aren’t even aware that they have STDs themselves and they infect others without any ill intent.

5. Don’t Pretend to Be Someone Else

For many people, getting into the hookup game for the first time, it can be difficult to adjust to the situation and act like themselves. After all, they haven’t done something like this in their lives and it is all new, no matter how much you read about it or talk to your friends about their experiences.

The first instinct for most of us is to try to act like someone else, inspired by the stories we’ve read or heard about. However, this won’t feel good, as you won’t get what you wanted out of the whole situation. Be yourself and do the things you want, while asking for the things you like.

If you feel like you could add a bit of fantasy and role playing, then do it, but don’t do something just because your friends told you to. Don’t lie to people about your experiences and say that it is your first time if they ask you, as they will know what to expect and who knows, you will probably even be interesting to them because of it.

6. Have Manners While Being Animalistic

Hooking up requires a carefully tailored balance between fine manners and respect along with animalistic cravings and impulsive behavior. You need to find the perfect balance between these things as this is how you play the game. You need to show that you are able to restrain yourself and are completely safe, this is the first phase.

The second phase is to be unpredictable, experimental, and exciting in bed. This is what people are looking for in their hookups. Being in this market is not easy, just as it isn’t easy to sustain a romantic relationship. On one hand, you have to be mannered and calm, while on the other, you have to be the complete opposite.

People are looking for excitement, but at the same time, they need to know that you are not some sexual predator and that they can rely on your discretion. Simply put, they need to know that all of this is a part of the game and that you are not taking it too far.

7. Make Your Boundaries and Needs Known

When hooking up with someone for the first time, it can get very unpleasant both for you and them when you both don’t know what the other person likes and where they draw the line. This is how you will break the mood and the whole thing will fall apart and be weird instead of fun.

For people in a relationship, it takes months to get to know each other sexually and here you don’t have that time on your hands. This is why you should have a straightforward approach and talk about how you like to play. This is not a situation where you should be shy, so quickly convey your needs and desires and most importantly, explain where you draw the line.

When you both express your needs and boundaries, you will know how to act and what to expect from your sexual encounter. At the same time, you will be able to enjoy your new experience while having a sexual flow without any interruptions.

8. Keep It Simple

Woman whispering to her friend

As soon as you start overthinking casual sex, you are in trouble. The point of the whole hookup culture is to keep things simple. It’s about sex, not emotions, logic, and relationships. Again, this is something you need to prepare yourself for.

If you start thinking about how the other person is feeling, what they are doing, or how your actions might affect them, then you are doing the whole “casual” thing wrong. The point is not to be stressed about these kinds of things. When you are having bed talk after sex, don’t give too much meaning to what you are saying or what the other person is saying.

Most people overthink even in committed relationships and this carries negative consequences, now imagine what happens when you start stressing yourself out about something that is supposed to be a no-strings-attached adventure. Whenever you find yourself doing detective work, simply give up on it and if you can’t, stop seeing that person.

9. Avoid Talking About Serious Things

After sex, bed talk is a normal thing, even in hookups, but the problem is when our hormones take over and we start talking about things that shouldn’t be in the whole discussion. Things like feelings, likes and dislikes, family, relationships, work, and so on. Of course, sex puts you and your hormones in a positive mood but this doesn’t mean you should break the rules.

If you and your partner find yourself talking about serious things, then you should stop immediately or someone will get emotionally involved. If not, then be prepared to face the consequences. On the other hand, you might continue doing this and see where it leads to, but only after you’ve both agreed that this might mean more than just casual sex.

If not, then it’s pointless and someone might end up getting hurt. When you start having these kinds of conversations after sex, your hormones will get the best of you and you might start thinking that you could go a step further with your relationship, even if the other person doesn’t think the same way.

10. Establish Safe Words

For many people, casual sex is the perfect opportunity to experiment in bed. This also includes a lot of rough and kinky stuff. When it comes to BDSM, not all people have the same boundaries and tolerance, and as we mentioned earlier, there isn’t that much time to get to know each other. In this case, when someone goes too far for their partner’s comfort, it might result in someone being hurt.

This is why it’s a good idea to establish safe words that you can use to let the other person know when they should take it easy, or stop. In some situations, seconds matter and this is why a simple word that has the right meaning can help avoid unpleasant situations.

Establish these words and their meaning before you get into bed and everything will go smoothly. Some of the most common safe words people use are banana, red, apple, pineapple, orange, and so on. You can also figure something out on your own as long as you are both clear on what the word represents.

11. Never With Someone Who Lives Nearby

Distance matters. If you are seeing the person you are sleeping with constantly you won’t be able to get them out of your head, especially if you are inexperienced at casual dating and you don’t know how to separate sex from emotions. This is why you need to be separated from that person and get used to the fact that you will be seeing him or her only when you’re having sex.

If that person is nearby, you will always have him or her in your head, think about what they are doing and romanticize the whole situation, which is the worst thing you can do. This is how you get hurt through casual relationships, and you need to ensure that it doesn’t happen.

On the other hand, the other person might be into you and start annoying you and digging into your personal life just because you’ve had sex. There are simply a lot of things that can go wrong when hooking up with someone who lives nearby, especially if you are inexperienced. This is why you should avoid this, at least for now until you’ve learned to handle yourself.

12. Be Sure You Are Honest With Yourself

Honest Person

Before getting into casual dating for the first time, you need to sit down with yourself and reflect on your thoughts and feelings about having sex with strangers. It’s very important to understand how you feel about the whole thing and clear up certain things. After all, not everyone likes hooking up with people and it doesn’t feel right to them.

We are all different and you shouldn’t be forcing yourself to do something just because you saw others do it or for any other reason. Try to answer important questions to learn whether you really want to try something like this out. If you really don’t want to do it deep down, you will feel very uncomfortable when hooking up.

Why do you want to do this? Are you tired of committed relationships? Do you want to try out something new in your sex life? There are some of the questions you need to answer before going through with it. Of course, even if you want to hook up badly, you might feel insecure at first, as you are inexperienced, but this is just a part of the process.

13. Emotions Have No Place In That Bedroom

Of course, when sex is involved, there’s a certain surge of emotions that overwhelm us, especially if the sex was great, but it doesn’t mean that you should let yourself succumb to those emotions.

Always keep in mind that this is about sex, passion, and those animalistic instincts, not about sharing your life story with someone. Don’t let the fact that you are feeling great and satisfied allow you to get emotionally invested.

In those situations, people get carried away easily and start talking about themselves, their feelings, and they look at the person next to them in a different way. If you find yourself doing this, try to contain yourself, if you can’t, simply get up and go home as quickly as possible. After all, you have the option to do that at any time and you don’t need to explain yourself in any way.

One of the worst mistakes beginners make in their casual relationships is that they simply stop being casual and invest themselves in the person they are hooking up with. This is a gateway to falling in love with someone who doesn’t see you that way.

This is the worst possible scenario, as they will see that you’ve developed feelings and most people who hookup don’t want to be attached to anyone.

14. You Are Not There To Impress Anyone

A lot of people who hook up for the first time put a lot of pressure on themselves. They don’t act as themselves and they try to impress the other person in many different ways. However, misrepresenting yourself will only have negative effects down the line. First of all, don’t say you’ve done things in bed you haven’t and don’t lie about your past sex life.

Within the casual dating culture, there is also a need for a certain level of trust between people so that they can establish relationships that work for them and have no complications. If your date figures out that you are lying, they will probably blow you off or try to play with you in some way to teach you a valuable lesson.

On the other hand, if you promise too much, you will be raising the expectations that your partner has. They will expect you to deliver the things you promised and when you don’t, they will just feel disappointed and probably won’t see you again. On the other hand, by raising expectations, you will put pressure on yourself and this can cause you to underperform greatly.

15. Manipulation Is A Sign You Should Go Away


As we mentioned earlier, trust is important for hookups as well, despite the fact that there are no real attachments. You need to have a transparent relationship with everyone you are hooking up with and it goes both ways.

We also said that both sides need to express what they want and what they expect from their relationships and that this is how you can have a satisfying fling.

If you notice that someone is manipulating you, lying to you, or has false intentions, you should keep away. It is true that you aren’t emotionally invested and attached in any way, but this doesn’t mean that you should allow someone to be disrespectful or try to use you in any way.

There are people within the hookup culture who like to abuse others and no matter how small or insignificant it might seem, you shouldn’t allow anyone to do it to you.

This is exactly why you shouldn’t rush things. You need to make sure that the person you are chatting with is trustworthy. Through simple conversation and getting to know each other, you can see whether they are hiding something or trying to manipulate you. Additionally, when meeting for the first time, find an open public space where you will be safe.

16. Don’t Let Yourself Get Trapped

You might think that this isn’t possible, but a person can get trapped in a casual relationship, just like in a long relationship.

In some cases, this simply happens and sometimes the manipulative nature of some people prevails. There are those that simply love having power over other people and using them even though they don’t care about them.

After a short time, people that aren’t cautious find themselves doing things they shouldn’t be doing for their booty calls and changing their lives for them. Try to avoid this as hard as you can and make sure to regularly check yourself and what you’re doing. We are talking about CASUAL relationships and this means that both people should have zero obligations and expectations.

However, if you are in a long-term casual relationship this can be difficult to maintain. So if the other side is forcing you to do something, tell them that you don’t want to do it, because they might be doing it unintentionally. If not, simply get out from that relationship and try to find a better fuck buddy.

17. Separate Your Casual Sex Life From Everyday Life


If you really want to have casual sex regularly and to make it work, you will have to separate it completely from your regular life, as the two simply don’t mix well together. Make sure that you see as few people as possible from your daily life when you are out on a date with your booty call.

Avoid introducing your sex buddy to your friends, family, and colleagues, as this is how you will prevent people from asking questions, while at the same time not breaking the rules of casual dating. This might make your partner think that you are becoming serious and things could go south from there.

The less your everyday life and casual sex life are connected, the better. This is a formula that has been proven to work many times and it ensures you will have less unpleasant situations. Of course, there is nothing to be ashamed of, but you won’t have to waste your energy on explaining things to people.

18. Alcohol Can Help Get Things Going

For many newbies that are interested in casual sex one of the most common questions is whether or not they should drink alcohol. There are several things that you need to consider when it comes to alcohol. First of all, a general rule of thumb is to drink alcohol if your partner does or at least, you should talk about it because some people don’t like it and it turns them off.

It is generally good to drink alcohol, especially for beginners as it can help you relax and give you more confidence. However, you shouldn’t get hammered to the point where you don’t know what you are doing. This might scare your partner off, and make him or she reconsider whether they should actually sleep with you.

Additionally, having sex while completely drunk isn’t going to be good for either of you, as you probably won’t remember most of it. Getting wasted can be extremely bad for guys, as you might not be able to perform and you will miss the whole point of your date – having sex. Be moderate when it comes to alcohol and drink something nice to get things going.

19. Control Your Texting

Communicate Texting

When you are in a committed relationship it’s completely normal to text all the time, chat, and keep each other updated with what’s going on and how your day has been. With booty calls, you should completely avoid doing this, because it simply has no place here. If you do this, you are sailing directly into personal and even annoying waters.

All your texting should come down to one thing – meeting to have sex. In some occasions, you can also send nudes or do a bit of sexting to get things going, but nothing else. You shouldn’t send messages to the person you are seeing when they are at work or when they are engaging in their “everyday activities”.

This is also a part of that “separation of your sex life from everyday life” and it goes both ways. If your hookup is sending your messages without any need, make sure to tell them they shouldn’t do that. You might think of this as nothing and find the attention pleasing, but this is how you will slowly develop emotions for the other person and put yourself in a dangerous situation.

20. Don’t Be Afraid to End it When It’s not Working

Sure, you’ve heard stories about great casual sex and amazing experiences, but even these kinds of relationships don’t last forever and they aren’t perfect.

After some time, the passion fades or your personalities clash or someone gets emotionally involved and the whole relationship simply blows up into tiny pieces. Sexual relationships can be unpredictable and I guess that’s a part of why they are so fun.

You need to accept that these kinds of relationships are transient and they don’t last. Most people don’t want them to last, they simply like to enjoy themselves and explore their sexuality for some time in their lives. This is something you should always keep in mind and this is how you won’t expect anything unrealistic from your casual sex life, nothing long-term at least.

So when you recognize that your relationship has entered that bad place for whatever reason, don’t be afraid to end it. After all, this is the beauty of the hookup culture, you aren’t attached to anyone and you have the right to end things as soon as you like without feeling any guilt.

Setting up these ground rules for casual sex will help you explore this way of dating safely. Keep them in mind before you get into your first fling, as they can be lifesaving when it comes to negative experiences and unwanted situations. They can help you understand yourself but also others and make your hookups enjoyable. Remember to bring protection!