What is the difference between a prostitute and an adult escort?

What is the difference between a prostitute and an adult escort?

The sex industry is not just one thing; it is made up of different professional roles that people can play, although we are all one community.

The difference is that prostitution is a general label that society assigns to virtually everyone in the one-on-one sex industry, and escorting is a particular area. They are not really comparable. You can find a simple flowchart that breaks down the sections here.

Victims of sex trafficking are also called prostitutes but are not classified as consensual sex workers. This is the consensus part that I will cover here.

If you want to know the difference between an escort and a prostitute, you have to break your assumptions. Plus, you're still paying for her time, not for sexual acts. More information has been given here.

Having worked as an escort and in a brothel, I will use those two to explain. Society would call me a prostitute if I did either job. However, as you can see, brothel work and escort work are not the same things.

Work in the brothel - increased focus on sex in private

  • Men usually come to have sex or relax and then go somewhere.
  • Time has a standard expectation of sex when you want it.
  • Less commitment is exempt unless requested
  • One could say that street work puts a similar or stronger emphasis on expectations and time constraints.


Escort work: more attention to companionship and outings

  • Men come often and want company on an outing. Dinner, event or party, a weekend somewhere.
  • As freelancers, they can tailor the business to the client. I know a lady who makes her customers' favorite wine, so have a drink before you go.
  • Time has a difference in society's expectations whether sex takes place or not.


If you want to go deeper we can quickly look at the other sections, although I don't have that much experience in those areas, that's my general understanding of the industry.

Working Like a Sugar Baby: Friends, Dating Through Funding

This is not a fixed-term, sex-inclusive situation. Someone who financially helps someone who is not. In return, the financier could just have company, could be platonic for a real relationship, or anything in between.

Work as a porn star - Actor/actress in adult films

The easiest way to explain. Julia Roberts played a sex worker, which made her not an actress, but an actress. Pornstars play the role of someone in a sexual situation. It's not always for fun, but to make a film about fun.

Stripper work - sexual/sensual exotic dance

It's about the dance. The teasing, the temptation, the look but not the touch. There can be routines to learn, work with the song; it can be thematic, especially working on stage.

Some are more alike than others, but they are all equally relevant to the sex industry.

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