First Date Tips
The first date is always a challenge. Here is a list of tips for you on how to make your first date a success.Conversation Starters 👇
We're hiring and looking for a fully remote UI/UX designer. Apply now!
😉 First Date Tips
Dates are already tricky enough, so we’re here to lend you a hand. As with many other things: preparation is everything! But of course, there are also some things you should consider during and after the date. Here are our tips on how to make your first date a real success!
Have fun and success on your date!
🏡 Before the date
Preparation is everything. With these tips, you can take some pressure off yourself and help yourself be more relaxed during the date. This way, the actual date will be much easier, and you will be able to enjoy it much better.
Where you meet and what you do there is very important. You can do something fancy or take the classic route and just grab a drink, a coffee, or whatever. But please don’t meet at one of you at home or suggest that. That can come across very obliquely. Besides, you usually don’t even know the person. Inviting a stranger into your own home can backfire hard.
Tip for men:
It is exceptionally well-received if you take care of the planning. This shows that you bother. It doesn’t have to be anything out of the ordinary, like going skydiving (please don’t skydive on the first date). Even if it’s just a little picnic in the park where you take care of the food and a good bottle of wine.
Still no idea?
If you don’t have a place yet and the date is still being planned, we have good ideas for dates on our site, including some for the first date. With these ideas you can make your rendezvous unforgettable: 200 Date ideas
Be aware of why you are dating
Some will shrug their shoulders and say that the answer to this question is quite clear. But is it? Are you looking for a relationship, for something casual, just for fun, or don’t you know what you’re looking for? Once you are aware of this, you can go into it later and ask the person what they want.
Prepare topics to talk about
If you’re a bit introverted and don’t tend to talk a lot, it can be very helpful to think of a few topics beforehand to get conversations rolling during the date. So if the date gets stuck, you can get things going again and avoid embarrassing silence.
We have a variety of articles that can give you the necessary impetus. Here is a small selection of them, which is especially suitable for the first date. The first article in particular, also gives you significant input on what you should talk about and which topics should better be left out.
One thing that needs a lot more attention is hygiene. You may think you are a clean person, but you may consider being exceptionally handsome on your first date. Take a shower before the date, brush your teeth, and use dental floss. The latter is particularly recommended for smokers and coffee drinkers, but I would recommend it to any other person as well. If - sorry - you tent to have bad breath, you can chew gum until shortly before the date. Clean your ears. If you wear a beard, groom it, trim it, whatever. Then you put on fresh clothes. And get rid of the dirt under your fingernails! (Which you should also cut. Women especially pay attention to a man’s hands.)
Pay attention to what you wear
And by that, I primarily mean that you put on fresh clothes, as already mentioned above. The shirt you had been wearing for two days straight has no place on your first date. You don’t even have to look extremely dashing. Put on something that makes you feel good, but still looks good. So no sweatpants. It’s best to wear something that will put a smile on your face when you wear it. If you don’t have anything like that, it won’t hurt to go shopping before your date. You can also ask a friend (preferably of the gender you find attractive) to advise you.
Deodorant and perfume
It is important to smell good because people unconsciously shape emotions through smells. But don’t overdo it. A small stream under each arm with the deodorant and two sprays of perfume on the neck are enough. You shouldn’t smell like a perfume factory. Also, your natural fragrance should still have the chance to get through. Chemistry, baby!
Breathe deeply and stay calm
If your nervousness tears you up, sit down and take a deep breath. Do some breathing exercises, meditate, or do yoga - anything to come back down. I would advise against alcohol since it will probably come across very negatively if you show up with a booze smell. But it is best not to get too nervous at all. Just stay calm: it is a date and not a fight to the death. A date should be fun, and even if it doesn’t work with the both of you, you can still spend lovely moments together. Maybe a friendship will also develop from it. Who knows?
Especially for women: tell someone
I don’t want to rob you of the joy of your date, but there are really strange people out there. This is particularly important if you have never met them in real life (for example, you know them from online dating). Just tell someone who you are meeting and where you are going. You can also forward the person’s number in case you cannot be reached. It doesn’t even take a minute and doesn’t harm you.
Prepare an exit strategy
Anyone who has had several first dates knows that not everyone works well. Even if they are much rarer than in films, yes, they do exist: horror dates. What if the person you are facing is really scary, or makes very suggestive comments? While it is always better to be honest and say that you don’t think it would work out with the both of you, there are unfortunately a lot of people who are extremely bad at handling a “no” or being rejected. That is why it is essential to come up with a strategy for how to get away in an emergency. And if it is just a staged call or you got other plans today. If you choose the call variant, I would proceed as follows:
- Tell someone of your friends that if you don’t send a thumbs up within 30 minutes, they should call you. So your cell phone will be actually ringing.
- Decide in advance what the reason for the call should be. Is it something urgent from work? (You missed a deadline today.) Or did someone break up with the person calling? (A little more obvious, but most people will understand that friends take precedence.) No dead grandmothers or something like that, please. A little acting talent is not wrong here.
- Say goodbye and disappear appropriately quickly to the urgency of the call.
Don’t jump in their car
Your first date shouldn’t require a car to get there. If it does, go there separately. The simple reason is that if the date goes badly or you even quarrel, you may otherwise be in the middle of nowhere. Also, you never know if the person will actually take you where you want to go. If your date goes well, you still got that idea for a second date.
There is nothing ruder than being unpunctual. Leave your home in time, and don’t be late. The first impression counts, and being late can destroy it right from the start. But I would also advise against being way too early. Being five minutes early is fine, half an hour looks like you don’t know what to do with your life. And if your date keeps you waiting, read a book in the meantime or chat with someone. Looking in your cell phone with a bored face is often poorly received.
And should the person keep you waiting for too long or write that it is half an hour or more late, go home and, if you are still interested, arrange another date. Nobody needs anything like that. Your time is important.
🍸 During the date
Now it’s getting exciting: The date itself decides everything. But that sounds more intense than it is. If you’re having a rendezvous with someone, you know at least one thing: the other person is not averse to getting to know you. So keep your cool, you’re having a date. It could be worse, couldn’t it? Have fun!
Keep it real and don’t force yourself
You must be yourself. Yes, this advice is heard over and over again, but it is simply true. What would you get if the person you met fell in love with you, but you are not you? Be yourself. As long as you’re not a serial killer or abnormal in any other way, you’re okay the way you are. And it’s reasonable to be nervous. Especially if you rarely have a date, this unusual situation can be quite intimidating. You can even address your nervousness if necessary - this makes you approachable and human. And if you can’t get rid of your anxiety, take a deep breath. If the situation permits, you can drink something alcoholic. That calms the nerves. But please don’t get wasted. Being drunk on the first date is rarely well-received unless you are both drunk, which can still go wrong in so many ways. And if you are now wondering what the tips from “Before the Date” have to do with being natural if they do not correspond to your normal behavior: Well, even if some of the tips above may be perceived as unnatural for you, they should be part of the daily routine. Punctuality is simply polite, and a certain level of hygiene should be normal. Nobody likes to date a litterbug.
Be a good listener and interested
Since a date almost always has discussions in it’s center, this tip is crucial. When the person you meet with speaks, you listen and don’t interrupt. Be interested in the things they say, and I mean exactly that: be interested! Respond to what is said and ask follow-up questions. Take your counterpart seriously, and don’t just speak of yourself. And if you don’t care what the person has to say, you can still go home. If it doesn’t fit, don’t force it.
Avoid serious topics on the first date. If you don’t know what you can talk about, you can either always respond to what has been said and ask “why”, or you can read the following article from us beforehand: What to talk about on a first date
Do not speak badly of yourself
Don’t talk negatively about yourself. That’s something absolutely unattractive. You’re fine the way you are. You deserve love. Even if you’re currently feeling bad, don’t rub it in. Have a good time. We all have doubts about ourselves, again and again, this is perfectly normal, but self-doubt should be kept to yourself on the first date. And just put yourself in their place: Why should they think well of you if you don’t do it yourself?
It’s always better to talk about your favorite things than those you don’t like. Better talk about the best trip than the worst. Awakening positive feelings is more likely to lead you to your goal. People then also associate positive things with you. Of course, you can never avoid negative things, and you can also talk about the worst vacations, for example, from time to time, as long as you keep it fun. Just don’t be a whiner! A date is not the right place to complain about things or to let off steam.
Compliments only in moderation
I would refrain from complimenting the other person too much. This is rarely well-received, and many people don’t like that at all. Not only is it overwhelming, but it can also make you look like an ass kisser. Please never be an ass kisser in life. Compliments that concern only their appearance are usually taken particularly badly. If you want to flatter the person, say something about their personality, for example, that you like their laugh or that you like their hairstyle, but never: “Wow, you are so beautiful.” For example, if you know that they are creative, you can say that you find their work inspiring (if you feel that way). Everyone likes to hear such compliments.
Do not lie …
A lesson that even the smallest of us learn very soon: a lie has no legs. You are not doing yourself or the person you meet favor with telling one. Sooner or later, they will find out about the truth, and that always leaves a bitter aftertaste.
… But don’t be too honest either
What now? It’s true that you shouldn’t lie, but you shouldn’t be a too open book either. Playing with your cards on the table from the start quickly makes you uninteresting. Why do you think mysterious people attract us the most? Because they are a mystery, duh. They are exciting. If you already know the end of a story, it’s usually boring. Keyword: spoiler. So if there are things that could scare your counterpart off, gloss over them. Something that would be a no-go on the first date may not be worth mentioning any longer on the third or fourth. And if there are things that can attract the wrong kind of person because you are, for example, filthy rich, then do the same: gloss over it. It’s also a date and not a session with a psychiatrist, so keep some things to yourself. We all have some luggage that we carry around with us. Don’t burden them with it on the first date.
Don’t try to top the person all the time
Nothing is more annoying than someone who always has to one-up the other one. The person opposite tells you about a great trip, and you have to tell about your much better one. They are talking about an incredibly fun party, and you have an even better story ready. Just don’t do that and listen.
And by that, I don’t mean ice cold and numb, but relaxed. Don’t get mad or be an anxious kitty, even if you’re nervous. You can briefly address your nervousness, as mentioned earlier, but you don’t have to reflect it. You don’t have to respond to every sentence or word, and you don’t have to return every compliment. Treat them like a friend you just do something with. If there are no expectations, it remains casual and fun. Do not overthink everything and do not desperately try to please. Go with the flow.
Have fun and make the most of it
Having fun is, of course, easier said than done. But see your date more as a way to meet a new person and have an excellent time than to find a potential significant other. Even if the person doesn’t quite meet your expectations and you are already sure that it won’t work with both of you, you can make the most of it. And if that is not possible, do not waste your time and just leave.
Pay attention to red flags
You should never go on a date with a list of things the other person should fulfill. But still, be aware of specific deal breakers for you. They are allergic to cats, and you couldn’t imagine life without your velvet paw? Then it’s going to be difficult. The environment is extremely important to you, and therefore you only ride a bike, but your counterpart likes cars and has to fill up on gasoline every day? … you already understand what I’m talking about, I guess. Dealbreakers, like they’re still not over their ex, hopefully, explain themselves.
Especially for men: be a cavalier.
A little decency and manners are extremely important and impress like hardly anything else. Hold the lady’s door open, be polite, etc. Show good manners. Of course, this also applies to women. We live in incredibly selfish times, so prove that you are different.
Just no… If that’s the only reason you’re on this date (but why do you want to get to know them?), go for it, but don’t hurt the other person’s feelings and don’t pretend to care about them. Otherwise, I would strongly advise against it, as this will usually hurt one of you. If your date went well, there will probably be more occasions coming for you in which you can catch up on that. And if you only have physical interest in the person, why do you want to get to know them better? If you’re just looking for sex, don’t go on a date and be honest. Otherwise, you only breed for bad blood.
Who pays the bill?
Opinions differ widely regarding that. There is probably no right answer to this question. But we’re still a pretty conservative society. Even if you meet a staunch feminist as a man, it would still be advisable to offer to pay. If the other person doesn’t want you to, they will intervene anyway. However, I would also recommend not spending too much money on the first date. Otherwise, the other person believes that they owe you something.
🤞 After the date
So it is done: the date has ended, and hopefully, it went well. If not, forget it. The next date with a person who fits better is bound to come. But if it went well, what now?
When should you write to them?
Regardless of whether it went well or not, don’t bombard the person with messages. It’s best to let a day or two pass, so you can come back down a bit and see things more clearly. Then you can tell them if you want to see them again. Maybe they wrote to you in the meantime anyway? Even better.
And regarding the three day rule, which is still common advice, but also partially regarded as obsolete by many, it is still justified. Maybe three days is a bit too long, but writing too soon can seem needy, especially if you’re a man. But don’t force yourself and listen to your gut feeling if you don’t believe me. Because it always depends on the person you met. At least consult your pillow.
Don’t answer immediately
From experience, I can say that very few people want to get an answer within ten minutes. If they want one so badly, they’re going to call. Otherwise, even if you have already registered there’s a new message, take at least half an hour or longer to reply unless it seems important (which you can usually see in the preview). This also has the positive side effect that the person assumes that you are not glued to your phone and that you have a life. And if that is not correct, then get one.
What to do if the person doesn’t answer?
Then under no circumstances, send another message. This is about the neediest thing you can do in this situation. Don’t be angry at them either. See it as a rejection. Forget it; it could be worse. Because if the person wanted to see you again as much as you want to see them and they enjoyed the date as much as you did, it would only be natural if they answered, right? And if you don’t want to give up, you’d better wait a week before sending the next message. If the response is not particularly positive, the person is definitely not interested in you. I’m sorry.
How to deal with rejection?
If you get rejected, be a good loser and don’t get snippy or offended! It just makes you look like a child. Wish the person all the best and don’t hold a grudge against them. It can’t always work out.
If everything went well with the first date, you just ask for another one. It’s that simple. Then you probably won’t be as nervous anymore, and everything will be much smoother. Then a third date, a fourth, etc. Congratulations!
✍️ August 5, 2020