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How To Flirt: The Complete Step-by-Step Guide

photo of Laura
by Laura
How To Flirt: The Complete Step-by-Step Guide

Knowing how to flirt is the essential skill you need for success on dating sites and during face-to-face encounters. Flirting generates an instant connection, and more importantly, lets someone know in a casual way that you’re interested in them – giving them an easy opportunity to let you know if they feel the same way.

If you don’t know how to flirt, it’s a scary and heart-pounding experience to even think about. But once you’ve mastered the basics, you not only start to enjoy flirting, but you’ll be much more successful! There are just three key areas you need to master to turn into a flirting pro:

1. Interesting opening conversations

2. Connecting and complimenting

3. Body language skills

Learning how to flirt or improving your romantic conversational skills lets your personality shine through and enhances your other characteristics. It’s not about laying it on as thick as treacle – it’s about infusing meaningful conversations with a fun, suggestive tone. You’ll also find out if you’re compatible with the person you’re chatting to much more quickly – which lets you spend more time getting to know the right people who you have a connection with.

1. Interesting opening conversations

Nobody likes a boring, generic conversation; they’re the bane of offline and online dating – shallow conversations which don’t really mean anything to either of you. That’s why you need to have an interesting conversation as soon as possible with whoever you’re talking to. This will give you way more natural opportunities to show you like the look and sound of them!

Bad intro line: Ur so hot

Better intro line: Hey [Jonny]. Can I ask you a question?

bad flirting is a turn off

Avoid boring, generic or cringeworthy lines at any cost!

So how do you start an interesting conversation? It’s easy – you just ask them if you can: can I ask you about something I find interesting?” or “can I ask you a weird question?” If they’re interested, they’ll be curious to know what you have to ask. Now’s your chance to start a conversation where you find out something meaningful about each other. For example:

  • “If you had to, what would you talk to a roomful of people about for an hour?”
  • “What would your friends say you’re really good at?”
  • “If you could spend ten times the amount of time on something you already do, what would you choose?”
  • “What’s something you’ve done that you think everyone should try?”

Now you’ve had what’s hopefully a more meaningful answer than “thanks”, “not much, you?” or “yeah i’m good”, you can actually start flirting – and it won’t feel forced. That’s because you  can actually be attracted to something more specific than “going out for drinks”. You can easily tell someone their passion is really interesting – because it probably is! Or that the charity work they do sounds really worthwhile – again, because it is. When you comment positively on something someone does, you’re more subtly complimenting them.

  • Does something they do sound exciting?
  • Do they seem passionate about what they’re describing?
  • Is what they’re talking about really interesting?
  • Are you impressed by something they’ve done?

Think about what they say and let them know how that makes you feel about them.

2. Connecting and complimenting

Once the person you’re chatting to has opened up a little to you, it’s so much easier and natural to get your flirt on. Here are 10 tips to keep your conversations interesting and flirty:

learn how to flirt

Skip the small talk and flirt through meaningful conversations instead

  • Ask more in-depth questions, based on their answers: If they love running, ask them why they love running? What’s the race they dream about running? When did they start running? Being interested and curious is flirty and attractive.
  • Make jokes and tease them to lighten the mood of your conversation: work out what they find funny; exaggerate, be gently sarcastic, use a few well placed emojis, send over hilarious memes. If they find all your jokes funny, they’re probably starting to like you.
  • Give interesting answers to their questions: you want to show your best side, so be interesting and excited about the things that make you excited. Don’t say “I’m going out for dinner” if you’re “going to a sushi bar in Chinatown with an old friend from university” – make it easy for them to find out more about you.
  • Don’t message too much: message at most two or three times per day, and don’t feel obligated to reply instantly to their messages. Focus on getting your next in person date sorted.
  • Find out and be interested in the basic things in their life: where they live, what they do, and other fundamentals, showing you’re interested.
  • Be playfully suggestive at the right moments: if you’ve got chemistry together, put some feelers out there to see how something more suggestive goes down; start small and make sure they feel comfortable with where you’re going. Something like “It’ll be pretty freezing, but I’m sure we can stay warm together” should do the trick.
  • Don’t bare your soul too early: always be honest, but you don’t have to lay out all your cards on the table within the first week of meeting someone. The person you’re interested in doesn’t need to know that you only broke up with your ex 6 weeks ago, or that you’re struggling to get rid of some pesky foot fungus, or that you’re scared you’ll never find the right person.
  • Remember your conversations: it’s cute and shows you care if you bring up something that your date mentioned 
  • Don’t overthink: unless you regularly offend people when you speak your mind, try not to stress! As long as you’re being interesting and asking the right questions, if the person you’re talking to is into you, there’s no need to agonise about your texting.
  • Ask them out on a first, or your next, date: messaging is the perfect way to get to know someone quickly, but if you think there could be a spark there, you need to prioritise meeting in person as soon as possible – no longer than 10 or so messages between the two of you. There’s no point wasting time in getting to know the idea of someone when you could meet, or be with, the real thing!

3. Body Language

Your body language is the most effective and important tool you have when it comes to mastering how to flirt! You can show you’re interested, ooze sexiness, make things more intimate and express your delight at what your date has to say – all without saying a word.

Whilst what you say is crucial, if you don’t back it up with the right body language, your date will be left confused about what you’re trying to tell them. Conversely, you can build instant chemistry and excitement by doing the right things. So, how do you flirt with your body?

how to flirt body language

Maintaining eye contact is essential for building chemistry

Eye contact

Eyes are the windows to the soul. More than any of our other senses, we understand the world through what we see, and our brains process millions of signals every time we look at someone. That’s why eye contact is the most intimate and powerful body language tool to show someone you’re interested. Here’s how you do it:

Focus your gaze: keep your eyes on your date at least 70% of the time. Letting your gaze constantly wander subconsciously indicates that you think there’s probably something more interesting than your date in the area – and that’s not very flattering.

Let your eyes linger: nothing builds emotional tension like eye contact and our brains are programmed to go into overdrive when eyes meet, so lock eyes for 4-5 seconds, and let them wander around your date’s face and body as you chat.

Blink frequently: We blink more when our brains get sexually excited, and blinking is what makes eye contact intimate rather than stare-y.

Don’t look at your phone: checking your phone whips your mind away from your current date and off to a million other places that you don’t have to be. Both you and your date know this, so avoid it at all costs. Don’t even get your phone out to begin with!

Body language and touch

Where you sit or stand with your date tells a whole story about your relationship – and where you want things to go. Flirting with your body is all about making things intimate by creating space for just the two of you, through a touch of a shoulder or a grasp of the arm. Here’s how to flirt, using your body:

how to flirt body language tips

Knowing how to flirt physically is just as important as your conversation game

Hug or air kiss when you meet: there’s nothing more formal than a handshake, so always take the initiative and confidently go in for a quick hug or air kiss to say hello.

Lean in: If you’re together at a table, lean your head towards your date while you’re chatting, as if you’re going to tell them a secret you don’t want overheard.

Turn and face your date: Whether you’re on a walk, watching a movie or waiting for a drink at the bar, definitively stop, and turn your whole body towards your date to show that your attention is fully on them.

If you and your date are bouncing off each other and there’s definitely some chemistry there, you should up your flirting game by initiating more physical contact. Always take it slowly, and make sure your date’s into it – if they look or act uncomfortable, stop.

Playfully touch an arm or a shoulder: When you’re excited, it’s natural to want to grab an arm or leg in surprise. Often the first time you touch is electric.

Drape an arm around them: it’s a cinema classic that feels close, warm and comforting

Place your hands on theirs: touching hands is often the prequel to going in for a kiss, so it’s a good way to test the waters. Gently lay your hand on top of theirs. Remember the rules for eye contact. Look deep. Blink. Lean in. If you’ve read the situation right, they’ll move straight in there to meet you.

Read more of our expert dating advice  and start your dating journey today!