Inside the rise of the sensible hen without inflatable penis, alcohol or stripper in sight

The COVID lockdown and factory closures in China have led to a shortage of inflatable penises and plastic straws.

But will today’s bachelorette party planners care?


A modern bachelorette party is now all about matching lavish luggage for a well-behaved weekendCredit: provided

From what I’ve seen, the good old brides-to-be party that started in the local Wetherspoons and ended in a dirty kebab shop is a thing of the past.

You only have to look at the photos of celebrities on Instagram to see that social media has sucked the life out of this once fun and frivolous event.

Binky Felstead of Made In Chelsea, 31, and Billie Faiers of Towie, 32, shared snaps of their bashes this week – but both looked far from loud.

Binky, already married to businessman Max Fredrik Darnton, flew to Ibiza this week for her delayed bachelorette party celebrated with fancy cocktails and boat parties.

At Billie’s party in 2018, the hens decided against having a boozy night out at a tacky-carpeted local nightclub and instead dove into an upscale Ibiza pool party.

Rather than wearing silly matching t-shirts with rude slogans, Billie’s pals dragged expensive rhinestone luggage and wore chic denim shirts.

And, of course, it was all documented on Instagram, complete with poolside poses. Yawn.

Who knows how much they cost, but even normal people seem to follow suit and spend big on boring hen weekends.

The average price of a do has risen from £150 in 2012 to £242 today – and nearly half of partygoers think pre-wedding parties have become too extravagant.

No less than 42% of hens regret parting with such sums of money – or avoid sending their buddies altogether.

I’ve had friends attend hen parties that cost up to £1000 and I was recently invited on a wine tour in Italy with a price tag of just under £500.

I politely declined – as a mother of two, I can’t afford it – and treated the bride-to-be to a local evening.

Either way, we had more fun drinking sambucas at happy hour than sinking overpriced rosé in a boring cellar.

But the invitation made me nostalgic for my own bachelorette party.

That was only 11 years ago, but we were barely out of the 2000s and not yet into the age of Instagram.

At that 2011 party, we drank £1 slammers in DayGlo shot glasses and were summoned between bars in Brighton by the penis-shaped whistle of the chief bridesmaid.

The strippers had to show up on naughty hen weekends


The strippers had to show up on naughty hen weekendsCredit: provided

Shake his pieces

At the end of the night we retired to the cheap house we had rented and my “surprise” (which wasn’t a surprise as everyone had one at the time) arrived – a strip -“low-budget” dancer who had a rubber band wrapped around his manhood too tightly, leaving it rather sore.

At the time, there was no fear of questionable photos ending up online.

Even celebrities didn’t care how they looked.

Besides avoiding the paparazzi, they didn’t have to worry about how their public image might be tarnished by a photo of them flaunting their breasts.

In the 90s and 2000s, we had fun – arms slung around our friends’ necks, alcopop in hand.

Kate Moss was photographed dancing on tables at a friend's house


Kate Moss was photographed dancing on tables at a friend’s houseCredit: provided
Gone are the days when celebrities indulged in boozy girls' nights


Gone are the days when celebrities indulged in boozy girls’ nightsCredit: provided
Kym Marsh wore L plaques at her bachelorette party


Kym Marsh wore L plaques at her bachelorette partyCredit: provided

Kate Moss memorably danced across a booze-laden table at supermodel Stephanie Seymour’s pre-wedding party in 1995.

As radio DJs Zoe Ball and Sara Cox threw a girls’ night out, made no effort to dress up and drank and smoked like soldiers.

Popstar and actress Kym Marsh donned L-plates for her boozy girls’ trip to Marbella in 2012.

But perhaps another nail in the old hen’s coffin is the fact that youngsters are far too healthy to have a traditional hen.

Many millennials – or “sensitive generation” – are now avoiding alcohol altogether, with 29% classing themselves as non-drinkers, up from 18% in 2005.

I also can’t imagine strippers doing so well today.

A pale, naked guy sucking his dad’s belly and flailing his bits in the bride’s face is probably considered more tacky than fun.

But memories like me—like a novice “exotic dancer” who styled a willing, very married bridesmaid at a friend’s bachelorette party—are the ones you treasure and they keep you going when you’re in elbow-length diapers or the kids’ homework.

For many women, these scenes are a rite of passage to transport them into married life, a shared experience with pals – where what happens on tour stays on tour.

And friendship, not the display of wealth, is the root of the bachelorette party.

A modern bachelorette party is all about Instagram snaps rather than creating real memories


A modern bachelorette party is all about Instagram snaps rather than creating real memoriesCredit: provided
A modern bachelorette party is all about excess and trying to look flawless


A modern bachelorette party is all about excess and trying to look flawlessCredit: provided

It’s a good time spent with friends in an otherwise busy life.

It’s not about how much money is splashed or how flawless you all look in the heavily filtered footage, it’s about having as many friends as possible together for the fun.

As the cost of living crisis rages, I hope people get the hang of it and return to those good old heady days and posh parties will become a thing of the past.

Hens then in 2002: Low blows and laughter

NO hen party is complete without whistles, penis straws and a cheeky game of truth or dare, writes Claire Dunwell.

My no-frills shebang in Newcastle is still, without a doubt, one of the best nights of my life.

The black miniskirt barely covered my panties, my “veil” was made of old sheers and as I hit the bars with a group of 26 homies, I smelled like a million bucks.

After filling our stomachs with a two-course early bird dinner, which only cost a dozen each, I blew my penis-shaped whistle to round up my “chicks”, who were all wearing T- identical shirts bearing the inscription “a hen, 25 years old”. chicks, no dicks”.

Claire Dunwell recalls her bachelorette party in 2004 when she had no worries in the world


Claire Dunwell recalls her bachelorette party in 2004 when she had no worries in the worldCredit: provided

I’ve taken on every challenge given to me – from showing my butt off to a bar full of punters, to slipping a broken toilet seat over my head.

And as I staggered back to our Premier Inn at 40 pounds a night at 4am wearing some random guy’s boxer shorts, I wasn’t afraid to wake up the next morning to #embarrassingpic because he didn’t. there was no social media. Thank God.

In fact, my shots are safely buried in the shed – away from my husband’s prying eyes – because back then what happened on tour stayed on tour.

My friends who got married around 2000 threw such rowdy, cheesy parties and there was no pressure to spend a month’s salary on it.

Like me, they were content with low blows and Kiss Me Quick hats in Blackpool.

Yes, there were kisses – usually with a random group of deer we encountered.

And, yes, we were absolutely blown away. But we were crying with laughter until our jaws hurt.

You can keep your prenuptials fancy, boring, and overpriced.

These were without a doubt the best hen days.

Chickens Now in 2022: A Battle You Can’t Win

MY own chicken fell during the pandemic, which surprisingly was a blessing, writes Clemmie Fieldsend.

Sticking to the rule of six and being outside, I asked my loved ones to shower me in all the traditional “tight” accessory styles – as it should be.

But sadly, that’s not my experience with most bachelorette parties over the past five years.

These days you have to shell out six hundred pounds for a long weekend in Mykonos and then spend a lot more on matching silk pajamas for your girls night out.

Clemmie Fieldsend recalls her reasonable bachelorette party, held during the pandemic


Clemmie Fieldsend recalls her reasonable bachelorette party, held during the pandemicCredit:

In the past I have paid £500 to go rock climbing and stay in an Ibis in the middle of the Welsh countryside.

I took a trip to Croatia for £400, when we stayed in an Airbnb that had stained sheets. The bride had a traumatic fallout with her sister.

In addition, there was a hen in Ibiza when, every day, we were made to dress in coordinated outfits with scenes taken every ten minutes.

Of course, all of them have been carefully checked before being published on social networks.

Instead of donning feather boas and tangerine fake tan before hitting the pubs, I’ve heard of pals doing flower arranging lessons, trekking with llamas, having tea after lunchtime and engaging private chefs.

Oh, and these days, one party just isn’t enough.

There is often a “home” and a “stranger”, or one for friends and another for family.

I was on Love Island and there are four HUGE things that TV show BANS
A man reveals that we misuse post-its and it blows people away

It’s a huge waste of time, money and annual leave when you could have laughed together in your local.

Plus, the stress of keeping 25 drunk women happy for two to five days becomes a battle you can’t win – and there’s always a big payoff at the end.

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