Just when you think you understand what women want and have all the relationship tips you need, it feels like they go behind our backs and change all the rules. So, FHM asked relationship expert Issy Sampson to help us crack the girl code. Turns out, much of the dating advice you thought was helpful actually might be hurting you.
Advice To Ignore: If you see a woman you like, make eye contact with her from across the bar.
Advice To Take: Just go up and say hello.
You may think you’re giving her a flirty stare, but she’s probably just scared and confused. The longer the stare goes on, the weirder it gets.
"Stare for no longer than three seconds then go and introduce yourself. Say something honest like ‘I saw you and had to come over and say hi or I’d regret that I hadn’t,’" says dating expert Hayley Quinn. "Remember that some women actually like to be approached."
Advice To Ignore: Wait two days before calling for a date.
Advice To Take: Contact her the next day.
Now that it's not the '90s and we’re no longer hanging by the landline waiting to hear from a potential suitor, the two day rule is no longer necessary. In fact, it just makes you look uninterested, which makes it more likely for the woman to feel snubbed and reject you. Dating expert Kate Taylor says that if you want to play games, concentrate on Angry Birds. If you like her, just send her a text.
Advice To Ignore: Pick-up lines are cheesy.
Advice To Take: Pick-up lines can be funny.
Pick-up lines aren’t always the embarrassment you think. If you carry them with enough confidence, they can work to your advantage. Make sure to avoid anything crass, but don’t be afraid to use a line so crappy that it’s actually become funny. "Say something funny, original and unexpected and you’ll definitely get a girl’s attention," advises Clare Young, from UniformDating.com. “It helps if she’s laughing with you, not at you, though…”
Advice To Ignore: Don’t always act too keen.
Advice To Take: Always act keen.
If you don’t show her you like her, she’ll be offended by the fact you look like you’re ignoring her. If you think you’re aloof like Don Draper from Mad Men, you’re almost definitely not.
“Avoid verbally expressing your desires to a girl,” says pick-up artist Kezia Noble. Doing this results in losing the ‘magic’ of the situation and can leave you open for rejection. So do it with actions. While you’re talking, hold her gaze for a little longer than necessary, look as if you have just noticed how unbelievably sexy she is and then look away.”
Advice To Ignore: Kick off the conversation by offering her a drink.
Advice To Take: Let a girl buy her own drinks.
Firstly, the whole ‘sending a drink over’ thing in films? Invented before Rohypnol. It also has every girl in the pub taking her drink to the bathroom with her.
“A lot of guys think the question 'can I buy you a drink' has exactly the same meaning as 'can I touch your left tit',” says Comedian Bekka Bowling. She reckons you’re better off not offering at all. “We’re on to you. It makes us feel like we’re being held hostage by the person who’s bought one."
Advice To Ignore: A failsafe first date is dinner and a movie.
Advice To Take: The first date has to be something totally surprising.
A frozen pizza and rom-com is all very well, but truthfully, your date has decided if she’s going home with you before you’re even beyond the appetizer. So, why not do something amazing with the evening instead? If you’re going home alone, at least you haven’t wasted your whole night on a squeaky clean chick flick.
Also, don't forget that the better your date is, the better the story of how you met will be. Women like to tell these stories!
Advice To Ignore: Women love men who can dance.
Advice To Take: There is nothing creepier than a man who can dance.
We're not looking to go out with Travolta from Saturday Night Fever. And while you think your ‘moves’ look sexy, girls just think it’s cringeworthy. If you’re a bump-and-grind in the club type, they’ll probably think you’re a sex pest.
Is there any acceptable form of dancing? Not really. Comedian Bekka Bowling warns that ‘comedy dancing’ is a turn off. “When we see a guy doing the David Brent, we’re not thinking 'oh he’s so funny', we’re thinking there’s a man who has practiced that terrible move in front of the mirror, in his pants. This isn’t appealing. Sure everybody loves a joker. Even my Dad’s a crowd pleaser after a few drinks. But I don’t want to have sex with my dad.”
'Stupid dancing' can be fine in rare cases, but make sure the girl is in on the joke before you embarrass yourself.
Advice To Ignore: Girls love a bad boy.
Advice To Take: Just be a nice guy.
“Girls just can’t be bothered with bad boys,” says sex writer Abbie Cambridge. “We’d never tell Ryan Gosling or Ryan Reynolds we’d be better off as friends, and look how nice they seem.”
Advice To Ignore: Girls don’t like texts, they like heartfelt cards.
Advice To Take: Don’t ever write love letters.
“Love letters have just become emails, texts and tweets,” says Julie Spira, author of The Perils of Cyberdating. “Girls love a digital interruption in their day which tells them you’re thinking about them. A carefully crafted email can be just as romantic as a letter; just be careful how you word things.” After all, the last thing you want to do is come across as cheesy.
Advice To Ignore: Try to make her laugh.
Advice To Take: Don’t try too hard.
Don’t try to make her laugh. Girls much prefer a funny, interesting story to a succession of badly told ‘zingers’ ripped off from some comedian. Being funny is important, but it’s not the be all and end all. “Truly hilarious men rarely wear ‘funny’ on their sleeves," says Caitlin Robinson (a.k.a. Miss Information)
Lead image via Getty.