How Many Shots of Vodka To Get Drunk? (Read This)

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Although distilled three times minimum, and sometimes more, and one of the purest and cleanest spirits, vodka is a very strong drink that definitely takes its toll if you go too far with it. 

Primarily made to warm you up, as it is a drink originating from Russia and Poland, where the weather is mostly cold, the purpose of vodka is not to have as many shots as you can but to have as many as you can handle until you are warm. So, it isn’t mainly a celebratory drink but a necessary means to maintain a healthy bodily temperature. 

However, vodka is a compulsory part of many parties and celebrations, as it has a killer kick that not only raises your body temperature but also the party atmosphere. 

Traditionally, vodka is served in a regular glass with or without ice, depending on your preference, and it is meant for sipping, not chugging. Still, due to that kick I mentioned, vodka is now very commonly served as a shot and often chased by another drink to soften the burn and the aggressiveness of the vodka shot. 

Vodka has about 40% alcohol content and often, even more, ranging from 40% to 70% of alcohol. That same percentage transfers into your vodka shot, only on a smaller scale, so each shot is from 40% to 70% alcohol, and you absolutely must have this in mind if you are having vodka shots. 

Although the quantity of alcohol needed for someone to get drunk isn’t set in stone, and no definition includes everyone, still the rough estimate is that it would take approximately five to ten shots (rim-full shot glasses) to get you drunk. 

The number of vodka shots needed to get you drunk depends on many other factors, such as weight, nutrition, stress levels, hours of sleep, speed of drinking, etc., so you cannot only rely on the pure mathematics and view your drunkenness only from the number of shots point of view.

vodka bottle

Therefore, in this article, I will explain the factors involved when it comes to getting drunk on vodka shots.


When talking about the number of vodka shots you need to drink to get drunk, we cannot take the number as a single factor, as it highly depends on many other things you need to consider. 

The drinker’s age, sex, lifestyle, sleep, nutrition, speed of drinking, experience, smoker, and non-smoker are also determining factors that dictate the number of vodka shots to get you drunk. 

Check our complete guide on How Many Shots To Get Drunk


The older you get, the less muscle you have and the more fat tissue there is in the body. Also, as you age, you lose water from your body, and therefore your body is a very favorable environment for alcohol retention. 

No matter how well you live and how cautious you are in your lifestyle, you cannot stop aging, and therefore, you cannot prevent getting drunker with age on the same amount of alcohol you had when you were younger. 

Three shots of vodka at 25 aren’t the same three shots of vodka at 35 or above. Therefore considering one’s age when discussing the number of vodka shots to get drunk is necessary to render the correct answer. 

So, even though there are many exceptions to this rule, the general conclusion is that you get drunker more quickly and on less alcohol as you age, meaning that if at 25 you needed six or seven shots of vodka to get drunk, you will need five or six shots five years later. 


Whether you are a man or a woman plays a massive role in the level of drunkenness and the number of vodka shots you will need to get there. Generally, men need more alcohol to get drunk than women. 

While it would take approximately five or six shots of vodka to get drunk, a man would need six or seven. 

This is mainly because men are generally larger and heavier than women, with a denser bone and muscle structure. Women tend to have more fat deposits than men, meaning that they retain alcohol in their bodies, making them need less alcohol to get drunk. 



The way you usually function and spend your days is directly connected to the number of vodka shots you will need to drink to get drunk. 

For example, if you tend to be less mobile and have a predominantly sedentary lifestyle, chances are you will get drunk sooner rather than later. A more sedentary lifestyle indicates that you don’t maintain your figure regularly, and therefore you have a looser body in terms of muscle tone. 

Therefore, you will either have more fat deposits that store alcohol for a longer period or you are naturally skinny, with no fat deposits but no muscle tone either. This also means you will absorb the alcohol much faster than your bulky comrades. 


Sleep is a crucial factor in having a healthy body. While you can go without water and food for days on end, you cannot go without sleep for more than 48 hours without enduring severe consequences. 

Therefore, it is only logical to consider the hours of sleep you’ve had before your vodka shot session. Your body is in far better shape with eight or nine hours of sleep than it is with five. So, if you had a good night’s sleep before drinking shots of vodka, you are likely to handle quite a few shots, somewhere between five and seven, without a problem. 

On the other hand, if you had five or fewer hours of sleep, which is merely a nap, you are less likely to hold your liquor well and will probably get drunk after your third or fourth shot. 

In addition, there is such a thing as too much sleep, so if you sleep for over nine hours, your blood pressure will probably be low, and you will feel sleepy, which will reduce the number of vodka shots you will need to get drunk to four or five. 


There’s no need to explain why your nutrition impacts your entire existence, as you literally become what you eat every seven to ten years because that’s how long your cells need to regenerate. So, poor nutrition dramatically contributes to the number of vodka shots you need to take to get drunk. 

The less you eat, the quicker you will get drunk. Drinking vodka shots on an empty stomach is borderline insanity, and you will start doing tongue-twisters after your third shot and zig-zagging after your fourth shot. 

Having a substantial meal before doing vodka shots is always a good idea as you have set yourself up for a night of fun on the dancefloor. Your body will be well-nourished and will have everything it needs so that you can enjoy a fun night out. 

If you drink vodka shots after eating well, you will probably need around seven or eight shots to get drunk. However, if you have overeaten, you will probably be looking for the nearest restroom after your second shot, so make sure you eat just right before doing vodka shots. 


Having six shots of vodka in an hour and spreading them across four hours isn’t the same, as you will sober up from the last shot before drinking your next. So, the drinking speed is essential in determining how many shots of vodka you need to get drunk. 

If you are a quick drinker, you will probably get drunk after your fourth shot if you drink with no more than a ten-minute break between shots. If you drink a shot every 20 minutes to half an hour, it will be long before you get drunk on vodka shots. Slow drinkers usually need at least six shots to get drunk.


It is a known fact that the more you drink, the more you smoke, so if you are a smoker, you will probably smoke double the number of cigarettes while doing vodka shots compared to the number of cigarettes you would have at the same time frame drinking only coffee. 

The more you smoke, the less oxygen you have in your body, making it more susceptible to intoxication, so it is no wonder that smokers need less alcohol to get drunk than non-smokers. 

So, if you are a smoker, you will likely need two vodka shots less to get drunk compared to the non-smokers in your company. If a non-smoker needs about six vodka shots to get drunk, a smoker would need four or five, as they will probably have a cigarette or two between shots. 


If you are an experienced vodka drinker, you will probably need more vodka shots to get drunk, and not because you’ve trained your body, but because you know what works for you and what doesn’t when drinking vodka shots. 

This is a typical example of practicing making perfect because you will know exactly when to drink, take a break, and hydrate. Experienced vodka drinkers rarely get filthy drunk on vodka shots even though they have drank the highest number of shots. 

While an inexperienced drinker needs three vodka shots to get tipsy, four or five to get woozy, and six or seven to get properly drunk, a seasoned vodka drinker would get drunk but still on their feet after eight or nine vodka shots. 

vodka bottle

Stress Levels 

The tenser you are, the more vodka shots you will need to get drunk. This is because, in the state of stress or tension, your body is more alert and in the fight-or-flight state, so vodka will not get you drunk as quickly as when you are relaxed and receptive. 

The first and second shots will take the edge off; if the edge is sharper, you will probably need a third shot. The fourth shot will make you tipsy, and the fifth and sixth shots will get you woozy. You can expect to get drunk after your sixth or seventh shot, but when you finally relax, expect a blast of drunkenness, as the alcohol will like hit you all at once. 


Can One Shot of Vodka Get You Drunk? 

One shot of vodka is too little to get you drunk. It can make you tipsy at best, though the probability of that happening is pretty low. 

One shot glass can contain 44 ml of vodka, and that is if you have it full. Often you get your shot glass a little empty, so you will probably get about 40 ml of vodka, which is too little to get you drunk.

If you are light, tired, and hungry, the worst that could happen to you after drinking one shot of vodka is wooziness which will soon pass if you don’t follow the first shot with a few consequent vodka shots in the next half an hour. 

How Many Shots Is It To Get Drunk? 

The average number of shots you need to drink to get drunk ranges from five to ten shots. It takes about three to four vodka shots to get tipsy and four to five shots to get woozy. 

Drinking over ten shots of vodka will get you very drunk, and you shouldn’t do it as you will lose the kick and feel very bad the next day. 

How Long Does It Take for Vodka To Kick In? 

It takes about ten minutes to feel the effects of vodka. Each sip gets into the bloodstream immediately after drinking, and it takes about ten minutes for you to take enough sips of vodka to start feeling it. 

If you have shots, you will take many sips packed in one large sip and feel the vodka shaking you up in about five to ten minutes.

It is essential to mention that the time needed for vodka to kick in is in tight correlation with the type of vodka in question. Usually, the more expensive, higher-quality, refined brands are smoother and kick more slowly. The cheaper vodka brands are more aggressive and kick in abruptly. 



Chad Smith

Meet Chad Smith, a seasoned bartender with a passion for mixology. He's the founder of Tin Roof Drink Community, a blog where he shares expert tips, creative recipes, and fosters a vibrant community of cocktail enthusiasts and aspiring bartenders. Join Chad as he takes you on a flavorful journey through the world of drinks. Cheers!

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