Summer wrote this song in 1977 when she was collaborating with a vocal group called Brooklyn Dreams, which was comprised of Eddie Hokenson, Joe Esposito, and Summer's future husband, Bruce Sudano. All three members of the group contributed to its writing and shared the songwriter credits with Summer.
When Summer played the demo track of the song for the head of Casablanca Records, Neil Bogart, he thought it was too rock for her and suggested the song would be more suitable for Labelle or Cher. This didn't go over well with Summer, since she wanted to record the song herself, so she shelved it.
In 1979, an engineer named Steve Smith was looking through some tapes, trying to find some blank space to record when he came across the demo of this song. He reminded Summer of the song, which she had forgotten about, and he also told producer Giorgio Moroder about it. Moroder and Pete Bellotte, who are team that produced "Love To Love You Baby
," produced a new version of "Bad Girls" that became the hit two years after the song was written.