The right way: If you look into someone’s eyes when you speak to them, it shows you’re interested in what they’re saying. Also, looking up into someone’s eyes and then lowering your lashes actually works.
It felt really contrived and I felt really stupid when I did that, but the cashier that I tried it on actually blushed! The wrong way: Heads up: some people have really nice eyes, so when you look into them it’s hard to look away.
Don’t get caught in their gaze! Trust me, unless you’re newly in love or if you’re doing iridology, never stare into someone’s eyes continuously. It’s weird and off-putting and not very subtle. There’s a guy at work who still thinks there’s something wrong with me because I stared into his eyes too long.
– TOUCHING AND GROOMING
The right way: Stroking your hair, fixing your collar, touching your face. As a person who does this anyway – and who grooms other people too (honestly, I’m like a monkey sometimes) I couldn’t really see if this worked in my favour or not. The wrong way: Apparently, women who constantly rearrange their clothes, hair and make-up come over as the type of female who is always feeling fidgety and insecure. Which is not cool, obviously. But hey, rather come across as insecure than have your boobs pop out or your jeans fall down in mixed company.
The right way: Smile when you mean it. People smile back with their eyes. The wrong way: Smile like you mean it! People smile back with their mouths. Simply showing your teeth is no way to smile – it must come from within.
– TOUCHING YOUR MOUTH
The right way: You want to draw attention to your mouth to show it’s pretty, sexy, kissable. A friend did this over dinner the other night and her husband asked: “Are you flirting with me?” Which I suppose would count as a win for her!
The wrong way: You don’t want to look as though you have something stuck in your teeth. Make sure there’s no green strands of stray morogo decorating your pearly whites.
The right way: A slight non-intrusive touch on a neutral body part. Generally, I do this when I’m sober. I’ve noticed that people don’t mind it at all and I think it helps with the bonding of friends. A pat on the back or shoulder is non-threatening.
The wrong way: Don’t be overfamiliar. Putting your hand on someone’s thigh – no matter how kindly you mean it – is definitely a move too far.
This usually happens when you’re drunk. And it has two equally unwanted responses:
a) A person immediately thinks you’re coming on to them and they’re flattered.
b) A person immediately thinks you’re coming on to them and are horrified. Either way, it means trouble for toucher and touchee!