Screen Shot 2014-07-01 at 12.42.23 PMAh, sleepovers. Mani-pedis, hair accessories, prank calls and pillow fights, magazine-flipping, crush declarations, pizza, ice cream, Truth or Dare and the faint whiff of semi-lighthearted hazing born of pre-adolescent insecurity. (Raise your hand if you woke with your hand in a bowl of water or found a whipped cream mustache on your face.) Slumber parties used to be the move when we were in elementary and middle school. Exactly when do young women outgrow them? And why should we ever let go of the sisterly bonding these kinds of outings promote?

It’s just as important–if not more–to maintain close relationships with women into adulthood. And it becomes more difficult, with college and job relocation, marriage, and parenting. Still, wouldn’t it be nice to wrangle up your girls when they’re all in town or willing to travel, and just inviting them to your home for a good old-fashioned slumber party?

Here’s a few ideas about what this adult version of the pre-teen dream might consist of:

1. Makeovers
You never outgrow a good makeover. And now that we actually know what we’re doing in the hair and makeup department, we could really give our girls some useful tips about taking colorful risks and making bold, daring fashion statements. Try new homemade facial regimens, trade brow and lash tips, and break out the Opi nail polish for group mani-pedis.

2. Cocktails and Cookies
Huzzah! We’re of legal drinking age now! No begging an older brother or cousin to bring us wine coolers! Cocktails and mocktails would be great icebreakers for friends who haven’t seen each other for awhile or for friends who are using the night as a much-needed staycation. Try new high-end mixed and frozen drink recipes. And buckle up for a few loose-lipped confessions about the past and present.

Baking cookies used to be a big thing at some slumber parties–and it still could be. Because you’re never too old for the bowl-licking, dough-picking bonding that is cookie-baking. Ice cream sundaes are a great substitute.

3. Drinking Games
See #2–and add parlor games. Play all your old faves–Truth or Dare, The Alphabet Game, I Spy, Uno–and alcohol and mix for maximum fun.

4. “Adult” Entertainment
Everyone’s different (hence the quotation marks on “adult.”) So take from this suggestion what you will. If reality TV has taught us anything, it’s that adding men (clothed or *ahem* otherwise) to a gathering can really spice things up. Whether in it’s cuing up your favorite sexy movie, hiring a dancer, or secretly inviting dudes to “crash” your party, make sure you’ve got the entertainment covered. You know your friends, so make sure that whatever you plan isn’t going to make anyone in attendance super-uncomfortable.

A safe, inoffensive, low-key, good-natured way to integrate men into the gathering would be to make a portion of it a speed-dating event. Start the night with a happy hour, bring in men for your single friends, facilitate their mingling, then kick the guys out when it’s time for the girls to get it in.

And, of course, it goes without saying that men needn’t be a part of things at all. We so don’t need them to have a good time.

5. Photo Shoot
We’ve talked here before about playing dress-up. It’s just as fun with a group as it is in private. After makeovers and drinking games are done, try recording the night for posterity with a group photo shoot. Provide fun and wacky props for your friends to choose from and snap shots to your heart’s content.

What do you think? Are you sold on the idea of an adult slumber party? Have you ever hosted one?

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  • WaterLove

    Growing up, I hosted and also attended a few slumber parties. As a young adult in the Army, my friends and I used to have sleep overs in the barracks. I haven’t done anything like that in many years, due to moves, marriage, parenting, etc. I would actually love to do something like this now, if there was an opportunity.

  • Brownieluv

    I once thought it was stupid, but now I like the idea. I’m 30 and married with kids, but for old times sake, it would be fun to have a sleepover like I’m 15 again. It would be nice to call up some old friends who I haven’t seen in years just to talk, play games, do mani/pedis, drink, relax…

    It’s funny to think about because when I was about 14-18, my 2 best friends and I used to have “sleepovers” so often that they weren’t even considered sleepovers anymore. It was like we lived at each others houses during summer break. In the summer, I’d be at my best friends house (and vice versa) for like 3 weeks straight, and only go home to pick up more clothes. Our parents would call and be like, “So….coming home today?” We’d be like “Um. Can you just send me 30 bucks for food? And I’ll be back next week?” then they’d be like “Nope, come on home”. Those were the days.