If you’re terrified by the idea of chatting up a complete stranger or someone you met on dating sites, the bad news is that we’re not going to help you. The good news is that it doesn’t matter, because the chat-up is a rotten seduction strategy anyway. The smart way to bewitch an attractive stranger is to shut your mouth, open your eyes – and use them to say more than any words can.
Read on to find out why eye contact always beats a chat-up line, and for our tips on working your gaze to its greatest seductive potential.
1. Chat-ups are like cold calls, only worse
An unsolicited chat-up is about as seductive as trapped wind. You’re imposing yourself uninvited on a stranger, invading their personal space and putting them under pressure to be nice to you… and they’re supposed to like you for this? A chat-up artist is a cold caller made flesh, and you can’t hang up on him.
2. Instant conversations begin with the eyes
Those intense, exciting, fast-flowing conversations that happen now and then between complete strangers who have a “connection”? They’re like a magical snowstorm of words – but they began with body language. A fleeting glance, a suppressed smile… somehow you exchanged a signal of mutual interest that fired the starting pistol on your torrent of words.
3. Eyes communicate more than your smartest one-liners
As soon as you make eye contact with someone, you’re sharing a kind of intimate communication that Shakespeare himself struggled to achieve with words. So let your eyes do the talking. Meeting someone’s gaze is all it takes to make a connection.
4. One glance good, two glances better
A double take is a clear sign of interest, but it’s a subconscious reflex action and fiendishly hard to fake. Doesn’t matter – a deliberate, teasing second glance says “yes, I like you” just as clearly as a double take, and it’s a lot sexier. Everyone does it: you make eye contact for the first time, look away, wait a second or two, then look back. If the other person holds your gaze and smiles, you could both be in for an interesting evening!
5. Don’t underestimate your eyebrows
People’s eyebrows give an instinctive jump when their owner spots an attractive member of the opposite sex. This “eyebrow flash” is quick but quite noticeable, and it sends a strong signal of interest – so it’s a useful addition to your body language vocabulary. Practice in front of the mirror so that it looks natural, and leave the one-eyebrow salutes to Roger Moore.
6. Sync your blinks
Still making eyes at your attractive stranger? You’re probably blinking like the blazes, because that’s what happens when you look at someone you fancy. An increased blink rate is infectious, so the person you’re making eyes at will probably start doing it too. Pretty soon you’ll be a pair of loved-up blinkers.
7. Look them up and down
As soon as your eyes drift down from their face and around their body, your body language is shouting “I fancy you.” You’d better hope that they fancy you back. You’ll know by the way that they’re looking at your thighs and shoulders and elbows and…
8. Ready to go verbal?
With your eye-contact communication going so well, it seems a shame to spoil it with words. But let’s not be too down on words: a few well-chosen ones, delivered with the right body language, can create a sweet communication symphony. And it’s hard to say “what’s your name?” with your eyeballs.
9. Eyes, shoulders and flirty talk
When you’re deep in conversation with someone, your eyes are busy communicating their own messages. For example when you’re talking to a family member, your eyes tend to look at their eyes and mouth. If you’re talking to a stranger, your eyes don’t roam far beyond the other person’s eyes – unless you fancy that stranger, in which case your gaze broadens right out to include their whole head and shoulders.
10. Hold their gaze
Holding someone’s eyes while they speak suggests that you respect and value what they’re saying – and it’s very seductive. But don’t overdo it. Eye contact says “I’m interested,” but staring at length into someone’s eyes says “I’ve got six exes buried in my garden, so be afraid.”
11. Smile with your eyes
A warm smile involves your eyes at least as much as your mouth, and your seduction won’t get far without it. Forget about playing hard to get – a genuine smile shows the other person that you enjoy their company, which in turn makes them feel good and enjoy your company even more. Smiling also makes you feel good, and is always more attractive than a pout. You too, Mrs Beckham.