Date Party Double Standards

Getting asked to a date party, formal, or semi-formal in college is so exciting, especially when you have a bit of a crush on the person who invited you! It’s an invitation to a night of fun, food, venues, party busses, dancing, and so much more. However, the more I have been invited to these events, the more I have realized one thing. GIRLS SPEND SO MUCH MORE MONEY ON DATE PARTIES THAN GUYS.


Now don’t get me wrong, I am so incredibly grateful for every date party I have been invited to! They always turn out to be a great time. Yet as I take a step back, I can’t help but be a little bit shocked at the gaping hole in my bank account that is screaming for my attention.


First of all, dresses nowadays are ridiculously expensive. I asked a couple of my friends how much money they thought they needed to spend in order to get a good quality dress for a formal or semi-formal, and their answers were pretty accurate compared to those of most college women. One friend immediately answered “about $100,” while my other friend replied with “at LEAST $75.” In my experience, I have been able to get a good quality dress that would be suitable for a semi-formal for about $50… but maybe I’m just lucky.

We spend so much money on a new dress every time a different event rolls around while guys just wear the same old white collared shirt with a blazer (and, if we’re lucky, maybe that cute tie their mom got them for Christmas). Meanwhile, us girls wouldn’t be caught dead re-wearing the same dress. And don’t even get me started on finding the perfect pair of heels to match.

Another expensive aspect of date parties is the amount of primping we do. The week leading up to every date party, most girls feel that it is absolutely necessary that they get a spray tan, get a manicure, get a pedicure, and get their eyebrows done. I mean come on, girls! Since when did we feel that it was such a necessity to have all of this work done just to look presentable for one night? Trust me, I get that we want to look our absolute best, but when you really think about it, the amount of money we spend on these things for every single event is greater than I can even imagine… or afford.

If you’re a student at KU like me, you might also be familiar with a little trip that people like to call BrOzarks. For those of you who aren’t familiar, it’s basically a short weekend trip to the Lake of the Ozarks with a fraternity having their formal there. While it is such a privilege to be asked to go on this trip, it can also be a bit of a slap in the face to your bank account. On top of all these things we already do for a date party, it is also the norm that the girl who was invited buys a cooler for their date and paints the entire thing to personalize it. As if the cooler, supplies, and paint weren’t enough, many girls also fill their cooler with any drinks and/or snacks that their date may want for the trip. It really turns out to be a fun little project, but BOY is it stressful and expensive.

Honestly, I don’t really know what I’m trying to get at here. All I’m saying is that maybe us girls shouldn’t feel the need to do all this spending for one evening of fun. We have set the standard so high for ourselves in terms of all the things we must do to prepare for an event that goes by in a flash. Guys definitely don’t put in this amount of time, energy, and money. Next time you get invited to a date party, just ask yourself, “Is this really worth it?” If the answer is no, then girl, save your money.


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