What Are The Best Flirting Techniques? 13 People Reveal What Works & What Doesn't

Andrew Zaeh for Bustle
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No matter how much practice you've had, figuring out how to flirt with someone new can be super nerve-wracking. Even when it's casual and lighthearted — like complimenting a stranger at the bar — flirting can feel scary, because you're putting yourself out there and making your interest known (however subtly). But you'll never know if someone shares your feelings unless you take that risk and express your romantic interest in them in the first place.

"If you’re attracted to someone but too intimidated to approach them, you’ll never know if they are interested in you," Samantha Burns, couples counselor and dating coach at Love Successfully, tells Bustle. "You lose nothing by saying hello, but you could lose your potential soulmate if you don’t have the guts to initiate contact. And if you’re fearful of rejection, remind yourself it’s a natural part of dating, not everyone will be attracted to you, and that there’s no way to tell if the nearby cutie is into you or even single, unless you approach."

In a recent AskReddit thread, one user asked people to reveal their best flirting tips, because you can never have too much advice when it comes to something as important as wooing your crush and (hopefully) kickstarting your love life. If you need a helping hand before you make a move, here are 13 tried-and-true flirting tips courtesy of the good people of Reddit.

1It's All About Eye Contact

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If you want to show you're interested in someone, a little eye contact goes a long way. It's a subtle way to make a connection with someone, but be careful not to stare — because that's just creepy.  

2Practice Good Listening Skills

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There's nothing worse than someone who totally domineers every conversation and doesn't actually listen to what you're saying. If you want to show you care and impress your crush, be an active listener.

3Be Subtle

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With flirting, sometimes less is more. You don't have to throw out cheesy pickup lines to make your intentions clear — just be yourself and make an effort to really get to know your crush.

4Don't Assume Women Can't Make The First Move

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Repeat after me: it's OK for women to make the first move. There's absolutely no reason a woman should have to wait around for a guy to express his interest first. If you're into someone, go for it!

5Ask About Their Hobbies

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Even if your crush has a hobby that you know nothing about (like carving ice sculptures), one of the easiest ways to flirt is to ask about what they like to do in their free time. You'll learn more about their passions, and they'll appreciate someone showing interest in their hobbies — it's a win-win.

6Pay Attention To Body Language

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Body language and flirting go hand-in-hand. Taking notice of subtle cues (like prolonged eye contact or playful arm-touching) can clue you into whether or not someone is ~feeling~ you, too.

7Don't Buy Into The "Friendzone" Myth

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Honestly, the friendzone is complete and utter BS. If you flirt with someone and they don't reciprocate, don't sulk and complain about being "friendzoned." Either move on, or genuinely accept them into your life as a platonic friend — don't wait around hoping they'll change their mind.

8Know The Difference Between Confidence & Arrogance

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It's important to be confident in yourself as a dater, but there's a huge difference between confidence and arrogance. If you know you're a catch, that's great, but the way to really impress your crush is to show them how awesome you are through your actions, not by bragging about all your good qualities.

9Keep Your Junk To Yourself

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PSA: sending a d*ck pic does not count as flirting. If you're dating someone and they say they want pictures of your junk, then go right ahead. But otherwise, don't assume a potential romantic interest will be wooed by an unsolicited nude (and this rule applies to persons of any gender, BTW).

10Don't Act Differently Around Your Friends

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In the event that you and your crush (or your  S.O.) are around your friends, don't be embarrassed to still flirt and show your interest. If you feel the need to treat someone differently because you're afraid your friends will mock you for being flirty/caring/attentive, then maybe you should re-evaluate those friendships.

11Respect When Someone Isn't Interested

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The number one rule of flirting? If someone isn't interested in your advances, learn how to gracefully and respectfully accept a "no." Relentlessly pursuing someone who has turned you down isn't "romantic" — it's disrespectful AF.

12Save The Serious Stuff For Later

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Who doesn't want to laugh?

13Don't Be Afraid Of Rejection

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Getting rejected by a crush is never a fun situation, but you shouldn't be so hard on yourself if something doesn't work out the way you wanted. There are plenty more fish in the sea, and one person's disinterest in you says nothing about your worth.

"At the end of the day, it can be hard to distinguish between someone who is flirting, and someone who is being friendly, such as the stranger chatting you up in the grocery store checkout line," Burns says. "This is when you may have to put yourself out there, be vulnerable, and make your intentions clear that you’d love to get their info or grab a cup of coffee. No guarantee they are available or interested, but at least you took action!"

Flirting or straight-up asking someone out takes a lot of guts, but like with all things, practice makes perfect, so the more you put yourself out there, the better you'll get at flirting. After that, it's just a matter of time before you find someone you really connect with.