Episode available within Canada only.

Sugar Sisters follows Hannah, a queer twenty-something filmmaker, and her two younger sisters, Amalia and Caroline, as they explore the globally popular phenomenon of sugar dating: young men and women dating wealthier, older, men (and women) in exchange for money and gifts. The sisters are young, broke and about to find out what it means to cash in on youth and beauty.

Highly controversial and heavily stigmatized, sugar dating is often seen as prostitution with sugar babies as the new kept woman. The idea is simple: older financially stable men with cash to spare will pay the women cash allowances in exchange for the girlfriend experience, which comes in the form of fun, friendship, and often sex.

FROM THE FILM: Hannah attends a sugar event in New York: a mixer that brings together sugar babies and potential sugar daddies.

Numerous sugar dating websites across the globe, boast millions of active members looking for mutually beneficial arrangements means the trend is on the rise. Wealthy men, the sugar daddies, connect with attractive young women looking to experience a luxurious lifestyle. The average sugar baby in Ontario earns an allowance of just under $4,000 per month. And with university fees on the rise, it's no wonder the majority of the babies on the sites are looking to cover their tuition. 

3 sisters walking down streetCaroline, Hannah and Amalia consider sugar dating.

Can Hannah and her sisters navigate this tricky world of dating? How far are they willing to go once things start falling apart?

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Is It About Sex? Confessions From a Sugar Daddy
Metro Morning interviews director Hannah Donegan

The youngest sister, 20-year-old Caroline, has aspired to be a trophy wife for as long as she can remember. Now in her first year of university and living on her own, that dream has become clouded by the reality of student loans. Having never run in rich circles, sugar dating is her entrée into a world where she might meet the deep-pocketed man who'll save her from debt.

The middle sister, Amalia, is 23 and dreams of moving out of her parents home. She has no plans to go to school, is not looking for a committed relationship and feels lost working odd jobs in cafes and clothing shops. The no-strings-attached mantra of sugar relationship could mean more disposable income with less commitment.

The Stats on Sugar Dating
- The average age of sugar babies is 26. 40% are students or grads.
- The average age of sugar daddies is 45, 34% are married.
- The average monthly allowance is $4252. Top Canadian cities are: Toronto and Ottawa.
- The average sugar daddy in North America has a net worth of 5.2 million.
- As of December 31, 2015 there were 156,000 Canadians registered on Seeking Arrangement.com.
Stats from Seeking Arrangement.com

Hannah, the oldest sister, is 28 and in a relationship, and hopes that sugar dating could replace her part time job. She's a queer feminist, empowered by the idea of owning her sexuality and making money off it. Her partner is somewhat supportive of Hannah's new venture to exchange companionship for money, so long as Hannah doesn't push her boundaries and compromise herself. The three sisters quickly find out being a sugar baby is as not as easy as dinner and dates-for-pay. The constant upkeep and attention from their demanding sugar daddies takes the work and effort of a part time job, and doesn't always come with the best pay off.

MORE:
They Need Someone to Listen: Confessions From a Sugar Baby
It's Not a New Thing: Confessions From a Vintage Sugar Baby

When Hannah enlists the help of Sandy, a professional sugar baby who makes thousands of dollars a month from different daddies, she finally breaks into the game. She startes travelling to New York every weekend, spending her weekends mingling with expensive suits, and getting offers she can't refuse. But when her sisters begin to crack under familial pressure, Hannah finds herself in a grey area where her moral and ethical lines are blurring. 

Also on CBC