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National Sleepover Day – May 9, 2024

National Sleepover Day is on May 9; it is a day to celebrate the amazing sleepovers that have been a way for friends to bond for decades. On National Sleepover Day, we can relive the midnight bonding with friends that made our teens so wholesome.

Sleepovers have been held by adolescents and teenagers as a way to spend more time with friends in a free, wholesome environment. It’s an opportunity for people to let their hair down and make some incredible memories with their friends, from sharing stories about their personal lives to bonding over a sad movie together.

On National Sleepover Day, you get to do it all again with the people you hold dear.


History of National Sleepover Day

National Sleepover Day was first celebrated in 2017 in the United States. It was created by a collaboration between four entities — the lifestyle magazine, “Cosmopolitan,” the beauty brand, Sephora, fashion influencer, Olivia Culpo, and the skincare brand, bareMinerals. 


On May 9, 2017, the four of them teamed up to create the ‘ultimate slumber party,’ which they held in the middle of New York’s Times Square. The purpose was to show off bareMinerals Original Loose Powder Foundation, which they claimed was makeup so pure you could fall asleep in it. They created a giant bedroom on Broadway and invited women to enjoy makeovers, talk about their passions, frustrations, and needs, and engage in some pillow talk. They encouraged more people, especially women, to host their slumber parties the next year, and thus, National Sleepover Day was born.


A sleepover is a social occasion where one person stays overnight at a friend’s house. Think of a sleepover like a playdate, but overnight. The term is often used interchangeably with other terms like pajama party and slumber party, although they do not strictly mean the same thing. It’s a time for parents to have a night alone and for kids to enjoy a night in with their friends.


Sleepovers are typically associated with adolescents and teenagers, especially young girls, but there’s certainly no rule against adults having them. Sleepovers were a rite of passage from the 1950s to the 1970s. Sleepovers are characterized by ice cream, gossip, prank calls, pillow fights, truth or dare games, and movie marathons. Most teen movies in the 2000s had a sleepover scene.

National Sleepover Day timeline

The 1950s
Sleepovers Gain Popularity

Sleepovers really take off in the suburbs of the United States around this time.

Shirley Jackson’s Pajama Party

Jackson writes a classic sleepover tale called “Pajama Party,” which revolves around the complexities of friendships at a sleepover.

“Sleepover,” The Movie

In a 2004 movie, “Sleepover,” two cliques of middle school girls have an all-night scavenger hunt to win a sitting spot.

First National Sleepover Day

The first National Sleepover Day is held in New York by bareMinerals and Cosmopolitan.

National Sleepover Day FAQs

What is the difference between a sleepover, a slumber party, a pajama party, and a lock-in?

These terms all relate to having people sleep over in a different house, but they don’t mean the same thing. A sleepover can include as little as two people and is rarely as planned as slumber or pajama parties. Pajama parties and slumber parties are very similar because both of them involve multiple people, but only one requires you to strictly wear pajamas. A lock-in also involves multiple people, but unlike the others, it is typically not held in a person’s home.

What is sleepover anxiety?

Sleepover anxiety happens among children who experience nervousness at the thought of sleeping at someone else’s home away from their parents. It’s a very common phenomenon, especially for kids who are about to go on their first sleepover. Parents need to be careful by waiting till the kids are ready, acknowledging their fears, and choosing that first sleepover carefully.

Are sleepovers healthy?

Sleepovers are very important for the mental, emotional, and social development of young children. They show trust on the part of the parents and give kids the opportunity to practice social bonding in a different environment than they are used to. Kids get to enjoy a feeling of independence in a safe space. They allow children to practice communication skills and learn how to build meaningful friendships.

National Sleepover Day Activities

  1. Hold a slumber party

    The most obvious way to celebrate National Sleepover Day is by organizing a slumber party with all your closest friends. It’s the perfect way to relive your childhood memories and create some great new ones. This time around, you could drink wine instead of ice cream — or even better, wine and ice cream.

  2. Dish some hot gossip

    Sleepovers are the perfect time to keep your friends up to date about your life. In our adult lives, it can be hard to keep up with each other and share random events in our lives. National Sleepover Day gives us the opportunity to catch up with our friends on anything, from career to crushes (you’re never too old for crushes) and partners.

  3. Get crazy with pillows

    Everyone knows pillows are a solid part of sleepover culture. You can use them to create a massive pillow fort or just go crazy and start random pillow fights. Either way, you’re going to have a ton of fun.

5 Important Facts About Things To Do At A Sleepover

  1. Braid each other’s hair

    Yes, it’s cliché, but it’s a traditional sleepover rite of passage that you must honor.

  2. Have a movie marathon

    You can pick a theme and watch as many movies as you can within the theme.

  3. Learn how to make margaritas together

    This isn’t a classic sleepover activity, but it’s one that certainly makes your adult sleepovers a lot more interesting.

  4. Sing your heart out

    Even if you don’t have a karaoke machine, you can just play some music and have a lip-sync competition.

  5. Design your own pillowcase

    Get a bunch of plain white pillowcases and some fabric markers, and you and your friends can let out all your creativity by designing them.

Why We Love National Sleepover Day

  1. It’s great for bonding

    Sleepovers are some of the best ways to get closer to people and form deeper connections. People feel freer and more relaxed at night when they’re preparing to sleep, which makes it the perfect time to catch up, unwind, and share secrets.

  2. It reminds us of a simpler time

    National Sleepover Day reminds us of a time when all we worried about was whether our crush liked us back. With all the troubles of adulthood, we need days like National Sleepover Day where we can relax and hang out with friends without worrying about deadlines or responsibilities.

  3. Sleepover friends last forever

    Some of the best long-lasting friendships are built through sleepovers. The bonding allows for deeper friendships based on mutual trust, openness, and a fun night of pillow fighting. The friends we make whispering under the bedsheets or in a pillow port are sometimes the friends that stay with us through life.

National Sleepover Day dates

2024May 9Thursday
2025May 9Friday
2026May 9Saturday
2027May 9Sunday
2028May 9Tuesday

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