While most people will agree that it’s smart to drink any kind of alcohol in moderation, there are some moments when taking a shot after shot of vodka is too good to pass up. So, you line up a row of shot glasses and pour in the crystal clear spirit known as vodka. But just how many of those tiny glasses are going to make you tipsy? How many can you drink before driving becomes impossible?
We got you covered.
Can Vodka Make You Tipsy?
Oh, it certainly can. Beer, tequila, vodka—anything that has alcohol in it can get you drunk given enough time. Vodka has an average alcohol by volume (ABV) of 35% to 95%, depending on how it was brewed and the other ingredients it may contain. Vodka has a much higher ABV compared to beer and gin, as well.
If you start taking shots of premium vodka, the potential of feeling tipsy rapidly is there. Even a single shot of vodka is sometimes enough alcohol to make people feel intoxicated.
In other words, if you’re looking to get drunk fast, vodka could be the right spirit for you.
Factors Affecting Vodka Intake at One Time
As with any alcohol, there are factors involved with how much you can consume in a single sitting. Those factors are dependent on the person, and so the amount of alcohol you can tolerate might be different from your friends and family.
Here are some things that contribute to how fast you get drunk:
Because women generally are physically smaller than men and have greater amounts of body fat (which alcohol cannot dissolve into), the amount of alcohol they can tolerate before getting drunk is less. Also, women have less alcohol dehydrogenase (ADH) than men. ADH is an enzyme in the stomach and liver that is made for breaking down alcohol.
The more you weigh, the more you will be able to drink. Again, this varies from individual to individual, but in most cases, the less you weigh, the more affected you are by alcohol.
Surprisingly, if you are having a good time and much less anxious about drinking, you are going to be able to tolerate much more than normal. This is partly due to alcohol lowering inhibitions and putting people in a better mood, especially when they’re already having fun.
Other Drinks and Chasers
If you are pairing your shots of vodka with other drinks and food, it will help you stay sober for longer. Fruit juices, olives, lemon, peanuts, crackers, and other things that are commonly paired with alcohol all help slow absorption. Also, if you start taking shots of vodka on an empty stomach, you’ll find yourself feeling much more tipsy than if you had eaten prior to drinking.
How Many Shots of Vodka to Get Drunk?
With those contributing factors in mind, let’s look at how much vodka you can drink at one time before becoming inebriated:
For women, 2-3 shots of vodka are within the reasonable range. You shouldn’t feel too intoxicated, but you will be feeling it, feel me? After 5-6 shots of vodka, you’ll be drunk. For most women, 6 shots of vodka is the limit. If you go on to drink 7 or 8, you risk blacking out, throwing up, and waking up the next morning with a wicked hangover.
For men, alcohol tolerance is usually higher, meaning that 3 shots of vodka should have very little effect. Around 7-9 shots, a man will start feeling the effects of inebriation. The upper limit for men is around 10-11 shots of vodka. Go beyond that, and you will be severely drunk.
There are exceptional cases, however, where some people (read: Russians) can drink up to 0.5 liters of vodka and feel sober.
Do keep in mind that these numbers only apply if you are consuming vodka with 40% alcohol by volume within a 2-3 hour time frame. Each shot glass should be around 30ml.
If you are drinking more slowly, are eating food, and taking smaller shots, it will take longer to get drunk, and you will end up consuming more vodka. Conversely, if you’re taking bigger shots more quickly, you will need far less vodka to get drunk.
Is Drinking Vodka Every Day Bad For You?
How much vodka is too much vodka, you ask? One serving of vodka is 1 oz, which generally contains around 40% alcohol (80 proof). If you drank several shots of vodka every single day for a week, you would suffer from deteriorating health. Now, imagine drinking a pint of vodka in one sitting. A pint is equal to 473 ml or around 10 vodka shots. That amount is about 5 times above the daily recommended amount of alcohol.
So, if you plan on drinking several shots of vodka in one day, you might want to steer clear of it for a little while and let your body recover.
List of Popular Vodka Brands and ABV
Want to know where your favorite brand of vodka stands with alcohol by volume? Check out the list below.
- Smirnoff: Produced by Diageo, the world’s leading spirit and wine company. Smirnoff typically contains 37.5% ABV.
- Svedka: Made in Sweden, Svedka is distilled 5 times with wheat and is 40% ABV.
- Belvedere: A Polish vodka that uses rye to make the alcohol. Belvedere contains 40% ABV.
- Absolut: Produced by Pernod Richard and contains around 40% ABV (80 proof).
- Ketel One: Produced by Nolet Distillery from the Netherlands, Ketel One competes with Absolut with a 40% ABV.
- Tito’s: Gluten-free Tito’s is made in Austin, Texas. The alcohol by volume is 40%.
- Grey Goose: Distilled by Bacardi in France, Grey Goose is considered high-end vodka. It is 40% alcohol by volume.
- Finlandia: Made in a Finnish village and distributed by Altia Corporation, Finlandia is another 80 proof (40% ABV) vodka.
- Zubrowka: A unique vodka that uses grasses from Poland’s Bialowieza forest. Zubrowka also tastes of almond, coconut, and vanilla and has 40% ABV.
- Stolichnaya: The famous Russian vodka that comes in a slew of flavors. Stoli has around 40% ABV.
- Khortytsa: From Ukraine’s famous Khortytsa Distillery, this vodka has 40% alcohol by volume.
And guess what? There is low-alcohol vodka too. Brands like KEEL Vodka (23.8% ABV) and Petrov Fermented Vodka (20% ABV) are redefining the world of vodka. If you want to enjoy more vodka without getting so drunk you can’t see straight, a low-alcohol variety might be right for you.
So, Many Shots of Vodka Get You Drunk?
Though it depends largely on your size, gender, and how you are drinking those shots, women can consume around 5-6 shots and feel drunk. Men can drink up to 10 shots of vodka before getting drunk.
But remember, it is best to drink in moderation, so you can keep the party going rather than getting so sick you end up with the toilet all night.