You don’t need the confidence of a supermodel to be an amazing flirt. All it takes is a little bit of guts, a lot of smiling, and the right attitude.
Whether it’s the cute barista at your local cafe, the hottie you’ve spotted across the bar, or the friend of a friend your mate just introduced you to – follow these seven steps and you’ll nail flirting with anyone.
1. Don’t overthink it.
Firstly, flirting is meant to be fun. Keep it lighthearted by reminding yourself this is not life and death. If the conversation doesn’t end in the outcome you want (ie: a phone number or a date) you can simply smile and move on, ready to try out your moves on someone else – this time with a little bit more experience.
Listen: Osher shares his top tips for a great first date on Love Life. (Post continues after audio.)
2. Make eye contact.
If you haven’t been introduced to the object of your affection but you’d like to start a conversation, someone is going to have to walk over to start it. But before one of you does that, make eye contact.
Try this: scan the room, make eye contact, hold it for a split second, look away, then look their way again, this time hold eye contact and smile. If this seems too complicated just make eye contact and smile – the trick here is to hold it for at least two seconds before you look away.
If you don’t notice your target walking over to you at this point, chances are they are a little shy. This is when it’s up to you. Walk over. You’re opening line doesn’t have to be anything fancy. Something like: “Hi. [Pause for their response] How’s your night going?” will do just fine.
3. Find an excuse for light touching.
Don’t underestimate the power of touch to effectively, yet oh so subtly, show a person you’re interested in them. It’s a tried and true flirting method many of us at Mamamia swear by. A little way into the conversation, gently brush their upper arm.
Bonus points if you do it while paying them a compliment. Which brings us to step four...
4. Everybody loves compliments.
Okay, not everybody, but most people love compliments.
The difference between a compliment that could make someone feel uncomfortable and make them feel awesome is the type of compliment. For instance, "you're hot" says nothing about your interest in this person beyond their appearance. Instead, try, "I like your shirt".
Wanna go one step further? Matthew Hussey writes in Get the Guy that the best compliment you can give a guy is about the trait behind a hobby or skill he has.
"Let's say the guy's good at the guitar. He's probably been complimented on that an awful lot," Hussey explains in a YouTube video.
"If you can compliment the trait that made him good at the guitar in the first place he will be much more sentimental about that... (for instance) the discipline to keep playing."
5. If in doubt, smile and laugh.
Disclaimer: this does not mean being completely blank. If you don't say anything at all, the person you're talking to will think you are... a bit weird.
However, if you're nervous and the alternative is you rambling about your cat or commenting on how great the music is for the fourth time, a smile and a little laugh - if appropriate - can be an easy way to keep your conversation partner on their toes. They'll have to work just a little bit harder if they want to get more from you.
Think Olena in The Bachelor Australia season four — the tennis star made it to the top three and she didn't even like Richie Strahan. Why? Because she gave him nothing and, in turn, he found her so mysterious.
6. Be playful and start teasing.
Some of the best relationships are built on a foundation of fun. After all, if you're not enjoying time with your partner, what's the point?
You'll know if you have the ability to go the distance with someone if your senses of humour match well.
If you're a generally sarcastic person, use it. As one Mamamia staffer says, "I'll just be sarcastic and see if he can handle it". And if he can't? Well, that guy just isn't sharp enough to match wits with you and you'll soon want to move on.
Being playful with someone you've just met can be tricky, but most people who know how to laugh at themselves will appreciate a general ribbing - just be prepared to cop it right back.
7. Leave them wanting more.
The conversation is coming easy and sparks are flying. You feel like you could talk to this person for hours... but if it's your first meeting (and not a date) you probably shouldn't. Instead, make an excuse to leave the bar/party/park while the conversation is still going strong and doesn't feel finished.
If it's been going well, this is when he/she should ask for your phone number or to arrange a date, so that they can keep the conversation going.
What are your top flirting tips? Let us know in the comments section below.