What Exactly Is a Sugar Daddy…And How Do I Get One?

Have you ever imagined a scenario like this? 

A man you barely know deposits $1,000 into your Venmo out of nowhere every month. 

Or maybe you get an expensive pair of designer heels shipped right to your apartment. 

Maybe you even go on a trip to Bali or Spain on the dime of a guy you barely know. 

All of this is possible if you have one or multiple sugar daddies. Sugar babies do very well for themselves, and it seems like it’s a super easy gig. While it’s more complex than it’s made out to be, being a sugar baby could be right for you.

What is sugaring, and who does it?

Sugaring is the verb of being a sugar baby. Sugar babies receive cash, gifts, trips, and other financial benefits in exchange for providing rich, older men with their company. These men are referred to as sugar daddies, and they’re generally very successful and willing to put down a lot of money to make their sugar baby happy.

A sugar relationship generally involves sex, but it doesn’t necessarily have to. Some daddies pay by the date, while others give a monthly allowance. Others prefer to pay in gifts, hotel stays, meals, or extravagant trips.

So who is the average sugar baby? There are eight million babies who have active profiles on SeekingArrangement, the leading sugar site. This is almost four times the number of daddies at two million. That means that sugar babies need to stand out and be competitive to reel daddies in.

Almost half of sugar babies are between 18-22 years old, and 34% are 23-26. Sugaring seems to be a young girl’s game. The inverse it true for sugar daddies, where only 7% are under 40. Men 40-50 take up the largest piece of the pie at 42%, while men over 60 account for 15% of daddies.

Sugar babies tend to be white collar workers (like waitresses or secretaries), college students, actresses, and models. Sugaring is so popular with college girls that SeekingArrangement has a page on their website where they boast about Sugar Baby University, offering free upgraded accounts to girls using their college email addresses. Many babies use their money to pay off their student loan debts, and websites that cater to them are catching on. (Fun fact: the top sugaring colleges are Arizona State, Indiana University, and New York University.)

Sugar daddies are most likely to be CEOs or leaders at a big company. Other big professions include businessmen, lawyers, doctors, and celebrities. These well-paying careers explain why they have money to throw around.

Sugaring lingo

Before we go any further, let’s get a quick sugaring slang lesson. They language used on the scene will be useful if you decide to pursue the lifestyle, and it also gives you an idea of what sugar babies experience.

SB: Short for sugar baby.

SD: Short for sugar daddy.

POT: A potential sugar daddy you’ve been talking to but haven’t actually met up or made an arrangement with.

Arrangement: Sort of like a business transaction. Negotiated with all partners involved, so it’s sort of like a kink negotiation, too. The daddy will offer a certain amount of money, and the baby might have safety concerns. These will all be worked out, usually before money changes hands so no one gets upset.

PPM: Stands for pay per meet. This means that your sugar daddy will pay you every time you go on a date. However, this usually is not allowed on sugaring sites, because if the date is just sex, it’s sort of creeping towards illegal sex work.

LTA: Long-term arrangement. Usually lasts more than six months.

STA: Short-term arrangement. Usually lasts less than six months.

Sugar Pup: Sometimes used for a male sugar baby. (These are relatively rare, as there aren’t a lot of sugar mommies and most sugar daddies are straight.)

Splenda Daddy: A guy who wants to be a sugar daddy but doesn’t have the money. Frustrating to go on a date with them only to find out that they can’t pamper you or live up to your arrangement.

Salt Daddy: A fake sugar daddy or scammer. They’re not generous or wealthy enough, and they can sometimes be dangerous.

Did you get all that? We know, it’s kind of a lot.

How does being a sugar baby work?

First, let’s talk about the financial aspects of sugaring, because that’s probably what you’ve all been waiting for. How much does the average SB make?

According to SeekingArrangement, the average sugar baby makes around $2,800 a month from her daddies. Depending on your location, that might be enough to live off of, and definitely enough to make a dent in college tuition. 

To achieve this sort of income, babies generally have more than one daddy that they’re seeing at a time. One SB says that she has one daddy who pays her $1,500 a month that she sees about once a month, a daddy that pays $700 per visit, and a third that gives her a monthly allowance of $2,000 a month that she sees twice a week. All told, that’s a minimum of $4,900 per month, so things really do add up quickly. 

Most sugar babies meet their daddies online. It’s a little awkward to talk up to guys at the bar and ask if they can afford to pay you $1,000 a month, although that would be nice.

The main site for sugaring is SeekingArrangement. We refer to it so much because it’s literally the only site that the pros referred to in our research. This is the premium place to go.

Another option is to seek out SDs on regular dating apps like Tinder. This can be tricky, because some men will probably be insulted that you think he’s a sugar daddy just because he’s older. You can set your match preferences to older, make it clear that you’re looking for a daddy in your bio, and see what comes of it.

Once you create a great profile on SeekingArrangement, you’ll probably get a lot of messages coming in at once. You need to weed out the good ones from the bad ones, because there will be some stinkers in there. You’ll want to know what you’re looking for up front so you don’t end up compromising.

From there, sugaring is a lot like dating with a few exceptions. You’ll chat with a sugar daddy before meeting in person or talking over video chat. Once you’re comfortable, you can go out on a date with him. Some girls prefer to ask for payment up front, but some daddies like to meet up first and make sure they know what they’re getting into. This is one of the boundaries you’ll set.

Once you have a relationship on lock, you’ll need to figure out your boundaries and be honest about them. Sex is an important part of this, because you need to make sure you’re comfortable fooling around with an older guy. For some babies, that’s basically a plus, but others don’t like the idea at all.

Sugaring isn’t easy. It requires that you respond to messages promptly, go on last-minute dates, and sometimes fake interest if you have to. You have to put in a lot of work to get that bread.

6 pros of being a sugar baby

If you’re trying to decide whether a sugaring lifestyle is right for you, here are some awesome parts of the work you do.

A businessman and his young companion enjoy a glass of champagne in a limousine.

1. Honesty

With vanilla dating, you sometimes don’t know if someone is there for “the right reasons.” Are they looking for love, or are they just looking for sex?

Sugar daddies and sugar babies know what they’re each looking for from a relationship. They talk about whether they want something short-term or long-term, and they negotiate romantic, sexual, physical, and emotional boundaries.

In the vast majority of cases, babies know that their daddy isn’t interested in really dating or marrying them. This is sometimes just because they have a demanding job and don’t have the time. Daddies are also able to understand that, while his sugar baby might be attracted to him and grateful for his sugar, she’s not romantically available.

2. Hanging out with smart, influential men

Sometimes dating guys off Tinder can feel like having a conversation with a wall. Sugar daddies are smart, which is part of the reason they have good jobs and all of that sugar to spread around. 

You can talk about politics, economics, philosophy, or psychology with a sugar daddy. Most daddies are looking for sexy girls that they can have these conversations with, not airheads.

In addition, these guys have a lot of business sense. If you have an idea for your own startup or product, your sugar daddy might be able to offer advice. In some cases, sugar daddies even invest substantial money in their sugar babies’ businesses.

3. Confidence boost

Having a millionaire interested in hanging out with you is flattering. Not only does it make you feel good about your looks, but it says something about your personality.

It’s possible that getting sugar from your daddies might actually turn you on. You’re sort of financially dominating them, after all. You’re the person in power who’s giving them what they want, and that can be hella empowering.

4. Work for yourself

Would you rather sugar or work at a factory or fast food restaurant? If you’re a certain type of person, you would choose sugar baby, no questions asked.

The sugar lifestyle has a lot of perks most jobs don’t. You get to set your own hours and only go on dates when you want to. This allows for a flexible schedule so you can work another job, care for a kid, or go to college classes. If you invest some of your money in an IRA, it even has a retirement plan!

5. Have new experiences

Some sugar daddies are experience based. He’ll have you fly out to his city and put you up in a five-star hotel. He’ll take you to restaurants and order expensive bottles of wine. If you’re lucky, he’ll even book a trip so the two of you can go on a vacation together.

For most people, these are adventures they’d never be able to afford on their own. Sugaring can allow you to get a taste of the lavish lifestyle.

6. Save up for life goals

Sugaring can be sort of like a side hustle. The money you make can go towards something like a down payment on a house, a new car, college tuition, or a trip to backpack through Europe. This extra money can make a huge difference in the trajectory of your life.

Questions you should ask before you commit

It’s important to remember that the sugar lifestyle is not for everybody. It can be taxing and require a lot of work.

Ask yourself these questions before you make your dating profile.

  • Do I have the time? Finding and dating a sugar daddy is hard work. Is there time in your busy schedule to slave over the computer writing messages that may amount to nothing?
  • Will I get too attached? Some people aren’t made for no strings attached dating. If you think you might fall in love with your sugar daddy, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment.
  • Am I comfortable with the age gap? Some daddy/baby relationships have very large age gaps. Are you okay with this? Do you have a limit to the number of years you’re cool with?
  • Am I okay being a baby to a married man? Some sugar daddies are married. SBs have different opinions on this. Some don’t like it at all. Some figure that if he’s looking for it, he’ll just choose someone else if he doesn’t choose her. Remember: your sugar daddy might tell you that he’s married, but he might not.
  • Will sugaring make me ashamed? A lot of people don’t feel comfortable telling their friends or family about sugaring. It’s normal not to want your grandma to know about it, but if you don’t want to tell anyone, you probably have some shame around the idea that you need to deal with before making your profile.
  • Will I feel safe? We’ll share some safety tips later on, but sugaring can be a kind of risky activity, especially if you don’t take precautions like meeting in a public place. If you think you’ll be jumpy on every date waiting for your daddy to stab you, maybe sugaring isn’t good for your mental health.

If all of this sounds good to you, it’s time to find your sugar daddy!

How to design your profile

Like any sort of dating, your profile needs to pop to land sugar daddies. There are a few key ways to make sure you’re seen in the best way possible.

Your profile pics

Absolutely do not skimp on your profile pictures. Just taking a few selfies with dog ears on them isn’t going to cut it on sugar sites.

If you can, get professional pictures taken. Think of it as an investment. If you can’t do that, have a friend photograph you with a good camera.

Before your shoot, think about what you want your photos to convey. There are a lot of different ways to be a sugar baby, and your pictures should tell potential daddies who you are. Pictures hiking outdoors, photos that look like a modeling shoot, and lingerie shots all send different messages and attract different types of daddies. Plan accordingly.

Also, you need unique photos for your profile; you can’t just use pics you’ve been posting on Instagram or Facebook. This is because you don’t want potential daddies doing a reverse image search and finding your profiles, including your real name and potentially enough info to get creepy. Use your sugar photos only on sugar sites.

About Me Section

First, a quick note: don’t use your real name. Pick something cute and feminine that doesn’t reveal your identity. After a few dates, you might tell your daddy your real name. However, putting this info on sugar sites right away is a bad idea.

Now, you might think that your about me section is supposed to be as generic as possible to attract as many sugar daddies as you can. This isn’t right, though. Most SDs are looking for a connection. They want someone they can talk to. A generic profile is just boring.

Talk about who you are and what you like. Be honest here. Don’t say you like surfing if you don’t know how to swim. However, don’t be too honest. Saying you like watching Netflix in sweatpants when you get home from work isn’t necessarily the sexiest thing. Talk about your interests and your passions. If an SD is interested in the same things, that makes for an easy opening message.

You should also discuss your personality. Words like funny, clever, inquisitive, enthusiastic, and happy convey a positive attitude. Don’t include negative stuff in your profile.

Your “Description of what you’re looking for.”

You should include vetting in your profile! Say what your ideal sugar relationship looks like. Talk about how much money you’d like to make, and how you’d like to get this amount. (SeekingArrangement won’t let you say you’re okay with getting paid per date, but you can negotiate this in private messages.) Setting boundaries and a price range weeds out splenda daddies and other people who have lower budgets.

Many things can be worked out during negotiations, but any hard lines can go in your profile. If you don’t want a sexual relationship, make sure to make this clear. It’ll probably be harder to find daddies, but you’ll create a bad situation if you go on dates with daddies and then drop this bit of information after they’ve spent money on you.

The first meet

Meeting up with a potential sugar daddy for the first time can be more nerve wracking than a job interview. However, it’s important to do your best to make it look effortless.

First, you need to dress for the part. He’s considering having you on his arm for all to see, and maybe bringing you to galas or charity benefits as his date. You need to look sharp, and you should look similar to what he saw in the profile photo. Cater your dress to the venue and keep things feminine, which usually includes wearing makeup and heels.

When you see him, you should hug him and maybe kiss him on the cheek. A handshake is too formal and makes your arrangement feel too business-y, and just sitting down makes you seem cold. It’s also a good idea to leave him wanting more with a little physical contact.

Be sophisticated. Again, you want to be someone he would be excited about introducing to his colleagues or friends. Sit up straight and make eye contact. If you’re drinking, limit yourself to a glass of wine or one cocktail. He won’t think getting drunk on your first date is very classy or sexy.

Probably the most important thing is to make good conversation. You want to engage him and show him that you’re a person he could spend more time with. Talk about yourself and your interests, but ask lots of questions about him. Avoid asking about family or politics. If he’s married, he won’t want to talk about it, and arguing over presidential picks isn’t the hottest conversation topic.

Lastly, relax! Pretend you’re catching up with an old friend. If you’re too nervous, you’ll have trouble making conversation and your body language will tense up. Be the best version of yourself.

Scams

Since there are a lot more sugar babies than sugar daddies on sites like SeekingArrangement, there are some people who are trying to run scams. 

Watch out for any guys who are asking for your bank account info. When this happens, sometimes the salt daddy will send you a wire transfer, sometimes for tons of money. They’ll just ask for $1,000 back. Then you find out the wire transfer is fake and you’re out 1k. Sometimes, this is even a money laundering scheme, which is no bueno.

There are tons of ways you can get money from your daddies that don’t give them that much information about you. Try Venmo, PayPal, prepaid Visa gift cards, or even cash on dates. Also, the sugar should be coming towards you always. The whole point of this arrangement is that he should never be asking you for money.

Sugar daddies can turn out to be catfish. A common gambit is to use a 20-year-old photo to make a SB think he’s younger than he is. Sometimes, though, pictures are 100% fake, which can be a safety issue. 

After you’ve been chatting for a while, consider asking for a Facebook profile or for more pictures. You can also reverse image search the photos he’s posted. You might find that they’re stock photos, which answers your question about whether they’re legit. Another option is to find his social media presence or even business’s website so you can screen him more thoroughly. 

If he gives you his phone number, go on a reverse phone number lookup site. Generally, a site like this will tell you his name, address, whether he owns a home, who lives with them, and other important information. This can help you determine if he’s married, for one thing. Plus, if he says he owns a home but an apartment address comes up, that can be suspicious.

You should also look up his name in a sex offender database. It’s good to be on the safe side.

Make sure you trust your gut when it comes to sugar daddies. Which leads us to…

Safety

Meeting people online is sort of risky no matter what dating site you use. However, there are some special concerns you should have when meeting sugar daddies. Don’t be too paranoid, but be vigilant, too. Here are some important safety tips for your career as a sugar baby.

Always meet in public for the first date.

No matter how much a daddy is offering to pay for you to meet in his private condo for your first date, don’t do it! This is not neutral territory, and he might have ways of making sure you can’t leave, even if you want to. You shouldn’t have him over to your place, either. That gives him a lot of information about you right away, before you’ve even said hello.

Meeting in a coffee shop or restaurant is a much safer way to go. If you get a bad vibe, you can politely excuse yourself. You should also take your own transportation to and from the date. Don’t go to his place or get in his car until you feel safe around him.

Tell someone where you will be.

If no one knows where you are, you’re in a very unsafe position. This is an important reason that you should have someone in your life who knows you’re sugaring. If you absolutely can’t do that, just tell them it’s a Tinder date.

They should know the address you’re going to, the name of the guy you’re meeting, and what time you expect to be done. You can set a check in time after the date. This way, if you don’t message her back, she’ll know something’s wrong.

There are also location safety apps like bSafe. It offers real-time location tracking and will alert your friends if you haven’t checked in in a certain amount of time. The best part of the app is its SOS button. You can activate it by touch or voice, and the “guardians” you’ve chosen will get a sound alarm and your exact location. When you press the button, it starts a sound and video recording of what’s going on, so your friends will know whether you’re safe or not and whether they need to call the police. (The recording could also be used as evidence if something goes really bad.)

Get a “sugar” number and PO box.

Remember how we talked about reverse phone number lookup? This is why you shouldn’t give a daddy your real phone number, at least not at first. Luckily, there are lots of ways to fake a phone number without even letting a SD know. Google Voice gives you a free new number. You can also download the Sideline app, which hooks up to your phone so you don’t even need wifi to use it.

If you plan to have any long-distance sugar daddies, you absolutely need to set up a PO box. It’s a really bad idea to give out your real address to a potential sugar daddy. He might be lying about living across the country, and that’s how stalkers are made.

Talk on the phone before your first meeting.

So you’ve been chatting with a POT, and everything is going great. You’ve screened him online and you’re ready to meet up. 

There’s one more little step. You should talk on the phone.

This doesn’t have to be a long conversation. Talking on the phone just verifies that you’re chatting with a real person. You might also be the kind of gal that can pick up vibes over the phone. If he’s skeezy, insulting, misogynistic, or sounds a lot older than he said he was, you just saved yourself a lot of time putting on makeup and picking out a first date outfit.

Be prepared to defend yourself.

Of course, this is absolute worst case scenario, but you should have a way to protect yourself in case of an emergency. Carry pepper spray on your keys or even keep a pocket knife in your purse. These tools can help you make a quick escape. 

You should keep these weapons on you even when you know one of your sugar daddies. Some babies have had daddies try to assault them or hold them against their will, even after they’ve known them for a long time. This is a miniscule possibility, but it’s better to be safe!

Being a sugar baby isn’t for everyone. However, if you’re young and you need some help getting through school (or you just want some designer clothes), it can be a great way to get some upward mobility going on. You could also sell your used panties to older gentlemen, just saying. It’s the perfect sugar baby side hustle.

Go make your sugar baby profile! Just remember to be safe.