Is there anything more exhilarating than flirting with someone you’re attracted to? The back-and-forth banter, the playful teasing, the electric tension – it’s unforgettable.
Flirting is the art of subtly letting your interest in someone show, without outright saying that you like them. It’s a delicate balance of tension that can be a lot of fun when it’s working well, but can also be quite painful if it goes wrong.
Some people just have a way with words, and can effortlessly charm people they’re talking to. Whether they’re naturally gifted or have perfected the art of flirting over the years, they make it look easy. They can jump into any conversation and flirt their way through it like a pro.
To investigate how these “pros” have mastered the art of flirting, we consulted we spoke to an “expert” for their opinion.
Dave Erickson is a bartender in LA and pickup artist extraordinaire. In his words, “from behind the bar we see it all and I decided to put what I learned into practice.”
Let’s Define Flirting
At its most basic, flirting is simply making someone feel special and appreciated.
It’s about giving someone the attention and attention they crave, and making them feel like they’re the only person in the room.
Flirting is a way of showing someone that you’re interested in them, without necessarily saying it outright. It’s a way of building rapport and sexual tension, and of making the person you’re flirting with feel special and desirable.
According to Dave, there are three types of flirting:
1) Innocent Flirting:
This is the type of flirting that is the most common and is usually done without any real intentions. It is mostly used as a way to make someone feel good or to gauge someone’s interest in you.
Innocent flirting includes:
- Complimenting someone
- Making eye contact
- Lightly touching someone
2) Serious Flirting:
This type of flirting is done with the intention of taking things to the next level, whether that means getting a phone number, going on a date, or something more.
Serious flirting includes:
- Asking personal questions
- Telling inside jokes
- Touching in a more intimate way
- Flirting with body language
3) Sexual Flirting:
This is the type of flirting that is done with the intention of turning the other person on and getting them into bed.
Sexual flirting includes:
- Dirty talk
- Sexual innuendos
- Heavy physical contact
Don’t Be Afraid to Take the Leap
The first and most important rule of flirting is to have the courage to make the first move.
In Erickson’s opinion, the biggest mistake people make when flirting is being too afraid to take the leap.
“The worst thing you can do is nothing,” he says. “If you’re interested in someone, the worst thing you can do is sit there and hope they come speak to you.”
“Taking the leap” doesn’t have to mean going in for a kiss on the first date (although, if you’re feeling it, go for it!). It can simply mean being the first one to start a conversation, or making a playful comment or compliment.
“A lot of people are afraid of rejection, but you’ll never know what could have happened if you don’t take the leap,” says Erickson.
So, if you’re interested in someone, go ahead and make the first move! The worst thing that can happen is they’re not interested and you move on. But who knows, they might just be waiting for you to make the first move.
Know When Flirting is Appropriate
The first step to flirting like a pro is to know when it’s appropriate. Flirting is all about reading the situation and knowing when to make your move.
If you’re at a work function, for example, it’s probably not the best time to start flirting with your colleague.
But if you’re at a party with friends, and you see someone you’re attracted to across the room, there’s no harm in making your way over and striking up a conversation.
The key is to be aware of the context and to make sure that your flirting is appropriate for the situation.
If you’re not sure, err on the side of caution and hold back. There’s nothing worse than coming on too strong and making someone feel uncomfortable.
Be Clear About Your Intentions
One thing that Dave’s agrees on is the importance of being clear about your intentions from the outset. Whether you’re just looking for a bit of fun or you’re actually interested in a relationship, you need to be upfront about it from the start.
There’s nothing worse than leading someone on, only to disappoint them later on.
“If you’re just looking for a bit of fun, there’s no shame in that. Just be honest about it with the person you’re flirting with and make sure they’re on the same page,” says Dave.
There’s nothing wrong with a bit of harmless fun, as long as everyone involved is consenting and happy with the arrangement.
If you are interested in a relationship, then you need to be a bit more subtle in your flirting. You don’t want to come on too strong and scare the other person off, but you do need to let them know that you’re interested.
A good way to do this is to drop a few subtle hints that you like them. Compliment them on something that you noticed about them, or ask them personal questions that show you’re interested in getting to know them better.
If they’re responsive to your flirting, then you can take things to the next level. If they’re not, then back off and maybe try someone else.
“Remember, the goal of flirting is to have fun and make the other person feel good. As long as you keep that in mind, you’ll be sure to succeed,” Dave says.
Be Aware of Boundaries
While it’s important to be clear about your intentions, you also need to be aware of boundaries. Just because you’re flirting with someone, doesn’t mean they want to be flirted with.
It’s important to be respectful and to read the situation before making any moves. If the person you’re flirting with isn’t interested, then back off immediately.
There’s a fine line between being persistent and being a creep, so be careful that you don’t cross it.
“The most important thing is to be aware of the other person’s body language and cues. If they’re not into it, then stop immediately. There’s no shame in backing off when you’re not wanted,” Dave says.
It’s All About Teasing
Another important element of flirting is teasing. This is when you make playful jabs at the person you’re flirting with, in order to generate a bit of sexual tension.
When done correctly, teasing can be an incredibly effective way to flirt.
It shows that you’re not taking the other person too seriously, but you’re still interested in them.
Of course, there’s a fine line between playful teasing and mean-spirited teasing. You don’t want to say anything that would actually hurt the other person’s feelings.
“A good rule of thumb is to only tease about things that you would be comfortable teasing yourself about. If you wouldn’t want someone to say it to you, then don’t say it to them,” Dave advises.
Also, make sure that you know the other person well enough before you start teasing them. If you don’t know them well enough, then you run the risk of coming across as rude or insensitive.
Finally, remember to respond positively when the other person teases you back. This will show that you’re a good sport and that you’re actually enjoying the banter.
Be Respectful At All Times
Dave also emphasizes the importance of being respectful at all times. Just because you’re flirting with someone doesn’t mean you can be rude or crude.
“You need to be respectful of the other person’s personal space and boundaries. If they’re not interested, don’t push it. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of harmless banter, but know when to draw the line.”
Respect is especially important if you’re flirting with someone you’re only interested in for casual sex. It can be easy to get caught up in the moment and forget that the other person is a human being with feelings, but you need to remember that.
If you’re just using someone for a bit of fun, then you need to be honest about it and make sure they’re okay with it. If they’re not, then you need to back off and leave them alone.
Flirting should be fun for both parties involved. If it’s not, then it’s time to stop.
Don’t Be Afraid To Text (or Sext if it’s appropriate)
In the age of digital communication, it’s perfectly acceptable to flirt with someone via text message or social media. In fact, it can be a great way to get to know someone better before taking things to the next level.
Of course, you need to be careful not to overdo it. Don’t bombard the other person with messages, or you’ll come across as desperate.
A good rule of thumb is to keep your messages short and sweet. Ask them how their day is going, or tell them something funny that happened to you.
And if you’re feeling bold, you can even send a flirty message. Compliment their smile or their sense of humor. Just make sure you don’t say anything that could be interpreted as creepy or sexual.
If you’re really hitting it off, then you can start sexting. This is a great way to add a bit of spice to your relationship and keep things interesting.
Just make sure you’re both comfortable with it before you start. And remember, always get consent before sending or receiving any sexual messages.
Flirting Isn’t All About Words
It’s easy to think that flirting is all about what you say, but in reality, it’s just as much about how you say it. The tone of your voice, the way you make eye contact, and your body language all play a part in how successful your flirting will be.
If you’re not sure how to use your body language to your advantage, then there are a few simple tips that you can follow.
- Firstly, make sure that you’re making eye contact with the person you’re talking to. This shows that you’re interested in them and is a key part of flirting.
- Secondly, try to keep your body language open and relaxed. Crossing your arms or legs makes you appear closed off and uninterested, so avoid doing this.
- Finally, pay attention to the way you’re touching the other person. Gently touching their arm or thigh when you’re talking to them shows that you’re attracted to them and is a great way to flirt.
Just make sure that you don’t do it too frequently or you’ll come across as creepy.
“When it comes to flirting, it’s not just what you say, but how you say it. The way you use your body language and the way you touch the other person all play a part in how successful your flirting will be,” Dave explains.
Remember, flirting is all about having fun and making the other person feel good. As long as you keep that in mind, you’ll be sure to succeed.