- 1Make eye contact. Eye contact is the best and easiest thing you can do to start flirting. Consider using it in these ways:
- Get caught looking. Don't stare, but do throw small glances at someone. Keep doing it until he or she catches you. Hold the gaze for a second, smile, and look away.
- Look into his or her eyes when you talk, particularly at meaningful points in the conversation (for example, while you're paying a compliment).
- Wink. It's cheesy, but it works if used sparingly. Do it when you're looking at someone from across a room, or if you're talking in a group and say something really meant for him or her.
- 2Smile. You'll probably smile automatically if you're talking to someone you like, but you can use your pearly whites to your advantage before the conversation even starts. Try these variations:
- Smile slowly. If you're looking at someone but not talking to them, try letting a slow smile spread over your face instead of breaking into an insta-grin. It's hard to say why, but slow, languid smiles are generally considered sexy.
- Smile when you make eye contact. If you're suddenly looking into someone's eyes, toss in a smile for extra appeal. (If it's a genuine smile, the other person will see it without even looking at your mouth — it will crinkle your eyes, and is known as a Duchenne smile.)
- 3Start talking. Take the next opportunity to casually say hello next time you see this person. You don't have to commit to a full conversation — acknowledging him or her in passing as you walk by can be sufficient for a first contact.
- Make a habit of verbally acknowledging your crush. This can lead to conversation later.
- 4Introduce yourself — or maintain the mystery (optional). If you don't already know the person you're flirting with, an introduction (or lack of one) can be a great thing to build flirting around.
- If your crush doesn't know your name and you're a naturally gregarious person, try introducing yourself at some point. It can be as simple as, "Hi, I'm [name]. And you are...?" Make sure you get the other person's name. To help yourself remember it, try repeating it after he or she says it to you. (Such as "Lily. I love that name.")
- Or, if you want to make yourself seem like a bit of a challenge, work to keep your identity a mystery for a little while. If the other person really wants to know, he or she will ask around or keep pursuing you.
- 5Initiate a conversation. Whether you already know the other person or not, a conversation is the best way to move the flirtation forward. Here are a few guidelines:
- Talk to someone you don't already know. Perhaps the best way to strike up a conversation is to start with an observation which ends with a question: "Nice day, isn't it?" or "This place sure is packed, eh?" What you say isn't important — you are simply inviting the person to talk with you.
- Find common ground with someone you do know. If you've already met the other person, strike up a conversation based on a shared experience or interest. For instance, you might talk about a class you're taking together, or the train you both take to work. Again, the topic itself doesn't matter — what matters is that you're inviting him or her to interact with you.
- Gauge the response. If the person responds pleasantly, continue the conversation. If the person doesn't respond or seems preoccupied or disinterested, he or she probably isn't interested in flirting with you.
- Keep it light. Don't bring up anything too personal when you're talking. Talk about the environment around you, the show you just saw, etc. Keep personal information (such as religion, money, relationships, education, and so on) out of it, unless the person enjoys intellectual debates without becoming over-emotional. Generally, it's best to avoid debating topics personally relevant to either of you (such as either yours or their religion), and to rather discuss topics you both don't have a personal stake in.
- 6Use body language to communicate your intentions. Non-verbal cues can say a lot more about how you feel than what's actually coming out of your mouth, so make sure you're communicating how you feel. Try the following:
- Keep your stance "open." Don't cross your arms or legs, as these are generally signs that you wish to isolate yourself from the other person.
- Turn your body toward the other person. Stand or sit so that you're facing the person you're flirting up. Angle your torso toward him or her, or point your feet in that direction.
- Break the "touch barrier". Casually initiate physical contact by
touching him or her on the forearm as you talk, or by "accidentally"
walking too close and brushing up against the other person.
- The first few times you touch your crush, be careful not to "trap" them. Depending on the area the contact should be long enough to be more than accidental, but no more. Avoid grasping a hand or arm, and instead try gestures such as brushing an imaginary speck of dirt off of their arm, or "accidentally" touching feet or knees without pulling away. All of these touches can be rejected without humiliation or offense, so if your crush is not ready for that kind of contact, you will not be forcing them to reject you entirely.
- Play with your hair (girls). Playing with your hair is usually a sign of nervousness, which is a good thing if you like the other person — you almost want him or her to know you're nervous, because it means you're interested. To consciously communicate this, slowly twirl a strand of hair around your finger as you talk.
- 7Compliment the other person early in the conversation. It might seem too forward, but letting him or her know you're interested in dating before a solid friendship begins is the easiest way to detour around the friend-zone. Get confident, and don't let the opportunity slip by — you never know when you'll get another one. Here are some techniques to try:
- Maintain eye contact while you're complimenting. Looking away might accidentally make you seem insincere.
- Lower the tone and volume of your voice slightly. Paying a compliment in a slightly lower register than your usual speaking voice makes it seem intimate and sexy. Plus, it might also coax the other person to come closer to hear you.
- If you don't know your crush very well yet, but you're working on it, use a compliment oriented in this direction. Something like:
- "You're fascinating. I LOVE talking with you."
- "I kind of can't believe I'm getting to know someone as gorgeous and interesting as you."
- Use your crush's other interests to your advantage. If you know this person is dating (or interested in) someone else, you can use this to your advantage in a compliment.
- Say something like, "I hope [other person] knows how lucky he/she is to be dating you."
- Or, if that person comes up in the conversation, you could jokingly throw out something like "I'm super jealous of [name], he/she has something I REALLY want." If your crush presses and asks what it is, play coy and say something like, "I can't tell you, but it's about someone beautiful/amazing/talented/[other adjective]."
- Try weaving the compliment into the conversation. For instance, if the girl you like is talking about how she had a terrible day, you could say something like "I hate seeing someone as beautiful as you feel so unhappy. What can I do to help?"
- Be careful about complimenting looks. A girl might like it if
you notice her eyes, but she might label you as creepy if you say she
has a nice figure too soon. Play it safe and stick to these physical
- Be bold. If none of the suggestions above appeal to you, go
for broke and pay your crush a bold compliment. Try these possibilities,
using the adjective that fits your crush best or substituting your own:
- "I hope you know you're gorgeous/beautiful/amazing/my favorite person to talk to/etc."
- "Sorry if this is too forward, but I have to say that you're incredible/an amazing person/so beautiful/etc."
- 8Keep your interactions short and sweet. Remember that the key to creating demand is making supply scarce, so try to limit your interactions with the object of your flirtations. Consider these limits:
- Don't talk to him or her every single day. Make it a special event and save it for a few times a week.
- Don't let conversations drag on for more than 5 or 10 minutes. The longer they go on, the higher your odds of running into an awkward silence.
- Let the other person come to you. After you've put in the work of starting up the interaction and sparking an interest, pull back a bit and see if he or she seeks you out for an interaction. This can be a good way to gauge interest, as well as build tension.
- 9Close the deal. If your flirting has been successful so far, and you want to get to know the other person better, it's time to see if you can turn it into a date. Here are a few approaches:
- Ask if the other person has plans at a later date. For instance, you
might say, "So, what are you up to on Saturday night?" Try to keep this
an open question, instead of one that requires a yes or no answer —
you'll get more information that way.
- Don't ask someone what he or she is doing tonight, or even tomorrow. Try to schedule the date a few days out so that you don't come off as overly desperate.
- Suggest a specific event, and ask if he or she would like to come along. This is the best approach if you're trying to arrange a group date. You could say something like, "So a bunch of us were going to see a movie on Friday, and I'd really like it if you came with us."
- Be straightforward. If you're feeling extra confident, go in for the kill without any pretense. For instance, you could say something like, "I'd really love to take you on a date. When are you free?"
- Ask if the other person has plans at a later date. For instance, you might say, "So, what are you up to on Saturday night?" Try to keep this an open question, instead of one that requires a yes or no answer — you'll get more information that way.
- 10Don't take it too seriously. Keep in mind that flirting is supposed to be fun, and try not to be crushed if your efforts aren't successful — not every interaction will be a perfect 10. Stay positive, and try again with someone else. As with anything else, flirting improves with practice.