The Dos and Don'ts of Frat Formals

You've just been invited to your first frat formal!!! Except you have no idea how those things work and the thoughts of spending an entire weekend on a beach with a bunch of drunk college students makes you equal parts nervous and excited. So to help you out, here are some tips that I learned from my first frat formal.

DO meet your date beforehand

It's really common that guys will ask friends to go to formal with their fraternity brother who doesn't have a date, which is what happened in my case. Most of the time this works out perfectly fine, but it doesn't hurt to grab some coffee and get to know each other before you have to spend a whole weekend together. If you don't know your date well, make sure you have friends that you feel comfortable with who are also going on the trip.

DON'T overpack

Keep in mind this is only a weekend trip, so you don't need to bring your entire closet and makeup collection. A few swimsuits, a sundress, your formal dress, and some comfy clothes to chill in should be perfectly fine. You don't want to be THAT girl who holds everyone up because she has three huge suitcases to load onto the bus. 

DO bring water

For some reason it's weirdly difficult to find water in the beach motels that most frats stay at for their formal. Chances are you'll be drinking a lot of alcohol (if you choose to do so) and laying out in the sun all day, which is a great way to get sick and have to miss out on all the fun that is formal weekend. No one will judge you for taking a break from the vodka lemonades and beer every so often.

DON'T obsess over a "bikini body"

If you want to eat a little healthier and go to the gym in the weeks leading up to formal, that's great...but don't overdo it. So many girls get so worried about looking good in a swimsuit for formal, but the reality is that you won't enjoy your time if you're too tired from being at the gym for 5 hours a day and living on nothing but veggies. No one cares what someone else looks like during formal because everyone just wants to have a good time.

DO let your guard down

Let's face it, formal is a really messy time for a lot of people and there's no shame in that. Let loose, have fun, and do whatever makes you happy. As long as you don't get arrested, you did formal right. 

DON'T worry about sleeping with your date

Agreeing to go to formal with someone DOES NOT mean anything beyond that. Whether your date is your boyfriend, a friend, or someone you just met, you are not expected to do anything you're not comfortable with. Many girls do sleep with their dates, but many don't. It's also fairly common for people to wind up with someone other than their date. Just make sure you and whoever you're with give their consent and are coherent enough to so.

DO take lots of pictures

Personally, formal was one of the best weekends of my freshman year and I wish I had more pictures to look back on! And it doesn't hurt that the beach is a prime spot for taking your cutest Instagram pictures.

DON'T forget to wear sunscreen

I honestly feel like my mom as I type this but I CAN'T STRESS THIS ENOUGH!!!!!!!! I came back from formal looking like a full-on lobster and in a lot of pain. Just do yourself a favor and put on sunscreen. I promise you won't regret it.