How To Flirt at a Summer Music Festival

by Maria Yagoda
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

The music festival has become an iconic summer pastime, an occasion to sport items like daisy crowns and bikini shirts that would be awkward to wear in the real world. Of course, the music acts are important, but so is the social experience: communing with fellow free-spirits in a grassy space, sweating together, sharing swigs from flasks, and making friends by virtue of being pressed up against each other.Flirting at music festivals is an art form I've perfected — most recently at last weekend's Governors Ball — but even the less experienced can master it, because no where are conditions more suitable for flirting than at a music festival. Controlled substances, summer sun, minimal clothing, crowds, dancing, and infectious music converge to transform the fest grounds into one massive, well-lit discothèque. If you're headed to Bonnaroo this weekend or any music festival this summer, here are five key flirting moves you can whip out at 3 p.m., or any time after you've had a couple of beers but before your make-up has entirely dripped off your face. (NOTE: These moves are easiest to execute when you're alone.)1. The Hold-My-Spot-While-I-Pee

This maneuver works 60 percent of the time, every time. If you're staking out a close-up spot for your favorite band and you aren't quite drunk enough to just pee where you're standing, ask any nearby (and handsome) stranger to hold your spot as you skip off to the Port-a-Potties. A cute guy pulled this move on me at Governor's Ball, and it worked seamlessly: when he returned from relieving himself, he told me my eyes were pretty, and the next thing I knew we were making out like teenagers while Interpol tore up the stage.2. The Oh-My-God-Just-Saw-Your-T-Shirt-And-That's-My-Favorite-BandYou already have something in common with the hundreds of strangers standing beside you at any given set: taste in music. This is a powerful tool in any shameless flirter's tool box. Let's say you see a fly, deliciously grungy-looking fellow in a Pavement shirt, and you love Pavement so much you dropped out of school to follow them on their reunion tour. This is a perfect conversation starter. Plus, you can make plans to head to the next act together, also known as Make-Out City.

3. The Lock-Eyes-and-MoshI guess this move isn't festival specific: it works at any club or crowded bar (and sometimes even on the subway.) Intense eye contact is key here: Find your target, lock eyes, and dance like crazy. As you dance, work your way closer to the target. Start moshing. It's a well-documented fact that couples who mosh together, stay together. After the set, go hydrate with your new guy. You can get to know each other in the hour-long line for water.

4. The Ugh-They're-Not-Playing-Any-Of-Their-Old-StuffYou're so excited to see your favorite band. You're smashed up by the stage with your fellow diehards. The band starts their set, and then they say something dreadful: "Here's a song off our new album." Why can't they just play the classics? Commiserate with any hottie in your immediate vicinity. Nothing brings people together faster than complaining.5. The Now-Or-NeverThe headliner just finished playing their encore, and it's time to go home. But wait, consider your situation: you are enmeshed in a crowd of thousands of youths with elevated adrenaline, all of whom are headed in the same direction. No one is really ready for the night to be over, even though you've planned an overly ambitious schedule for the next day, like arriving at the festival 1:00 p.m. (LOL). Start talking to literally anyone who strikes your fancy; I promise they'll be receptive. Ask them about any after parties, or even make plans to meet up at a show tomorrow. Plus, it's dark at this point, so no one will be able to notice that your super edgy face paint has smeared and crusted all over your face.

Images: Instagram/Kylie Jenner, I'm Not Obsessed, Instagram/Kendall Jenner