Online dating has changed a lot about how we date, but nothing more than how we flirt. We’ve gone exchanging glances or buying drinks to show interest to sliding into DM’s or swiping right. We live in an age of ghosting, sexting, and hookups, so if the world of dating is evolving how can you keep up to evolve with it?
Flirting over text brings with it its own unique challenges, the biggest of which is how to convey charm, wit, and humor in a text message. Not only can it be done, but by mastering the ability to do so you will set yourself apart from the rest of the online dating crowd. Luckily for you, we’ve got 6 simple tips on how to become a better flirt over text, and by implementing them you’ll be well on your way to online dating success.
Tip 1: Avoid the Boring Opener
One of the most common mistakes people make when texting is sending a text that is not easy to respond to. Take for example sending an opening message like “Hey”, what is your desired response to that? More importantly, what does that message tell them about you? Worst case scenario they think you are uncreative, not especially charming, and boring. Best case scenario they think you sent a lazy message. The same goes for “Hey, how are you?” or “What’s up”, it strikes the recipient that you do not actually care about how they are doing, because those messages are overused and lack a personal touch. They also do not let them know anything about you.
Let the person you are texting know that you are genuinely interested, and not sending the same canned message to everyone you match with. Go through their profile and pick out something interesting to ask them about. If they have a picture of themself doing a sport or activity, ask them about it. For example, if they have a photo of them rock climbing, you could say “I’ve always wanted to go rock climbing, do you know any good spots?”. This gives them the opportunity to talk about themselves and also could lead to a date down the line.
There are other ways to open up a flirty conversation though. Funny one-liners and interesting questions also demonstrate your personality while letting them tell you about them as well. If they don’t have anything that interests you on their profile, you can send one of the following messages to get the conversation started:
- If you could go back in time what time would you travel to?
- Where’s the best place you’ve ever been?
- What’s your favorite movie?
- What’s your most used emoji?
Speaking of emojis onto the next tip!
Tip 2: Have fun with it!
A lot of the time tone and intent can be lost when sending a text, especially sarcasm and sly flirting, but there is a way around it. Adding emojis and GIFs in your messages can help add to the tone of the text. For example, let’s say you get a text from someone asking you how work is, and you want to show that you’re bored in a sarcastic way. You can send a message like “It’s great…” but the tone is confusing. Compare that to “It’s great… 🙄” which is much clearer that you are being sarcastic.
The same works to accent positive emotions. Let’s say you scheduled a date and you want to show that you’re excited. You can say “I can’t wait” on its own or you can add a couple of these 🥰😘😍 to show you are really excited, or if you don’t want to scare them off you can add some of these 😊😃😁. GIFs and emojis also keep conversations interesting, and break up the back and forth blocks of text.
Be careful though, you don’t want to overuse emojis. If you see the person you are texting is never using emojis you may want to use them more sparingly. If the person you are talking to uses them a lot you may want to up your emoji game. Remember, you want to use emojis and GIFs to accent your message not illustrate a story so avoid sending a text like the one below:
Hey, 👋 How are you doing 🤔? I finished work 💼 and wanted to ask❓ you about grabbing coffee ☕️ later.
Tip 3: Respond Quickly
Most of us at one point have seen a text and chose not to respond for half an hour because it was the cool thing to do. Newsflash: Purposefully not responding does not make you more desirable, and in some cases, it can be a total turnoff. With dating apps today, the person you are messaging could be messaging multiple people at once, and the easiest way to stand out from the crowd is to have quick responses. When people choose to message you is usually the time that people would like to talk, which tends to mean they are in a good mood. Take advantage of that by being the first to respond.
Ironically, the quickest way to end a conversation is by being slow at responding. Nobody wants to be in a flirtatious conversation when they have to wait hours between messages. Do yourself a favor and respond back when you can.
Tip 4: Be Yourself
It can be very easy to pick up a new voice when sending a message, but it’s important to stop trying to play a part and use your own voice. Aside from the obvious reason to be yourself, you want someone who likes you for who you are, there are many reasons why you should be authentic over the phone.
One of the reasons is it is a hard charade to keep up. Let’s face it, if you are pretending to be elegant and classy over text by using big words and referencing fancy things, you are going to run out of steam (or words in the thesaurus to use). It is much easier to find your own voice, and the conversation will feel much more natural. Plus, you don’t have to worry about changing your real-life voice to fit your texting persona.
Finding your own voice over text can be easier said than done. If you’re having trouble finding the right tone in your texts to match your voice, listen to how you flirt in person, up the flirt factor, and start using that tone when flirting over text.
It’s also important NOT to lie. It may be tempting when someone asks you what you are doing to respond with “Jogging”, but then you become the jogger, and you’ll have to keep up that act.
Tip 5: Don’t Overwhelm With Compliments
Let’s say you match with someone you think is gorgeous, and you want to let them know that you find them attractive… Not so fast!
You don’t want to start with the compliment. Compliments are often hard to respond to, and they put the person you’re messaging in a weird spot. Are they supposed to compliment you back? Is it bad if they say thank you? It’s a lot of pressure to put on someone you are connecting with for the first time. Go with a thoughtful and easy to respond opener (See Tip #1).
When it comes to the compliment itself be careful with what you choose to say. Physical compliments like “You’re beautiful”, while they may seem nice, can often feel empty and can be a conversation ender. If you are going to give a compliment on someone’s physical appearance make sure to make it specific to them, like “Your smile is adorable” or “I love your style”. This shows that you are paying attention to their profile, and it’s always nice to hear compliments like these. You should avoid being overly specific or sending a sexual compliment, as this can make the person you are texting very uncomfortable. Compliments of physical appearance can lead the person you are texting to think you are only interested in them for their looks. They can be some of the worst compliments to give.
Although there are physical compliments that can be received well, it is much better to compliment their personality. Letting them know you find them funny, or better yet, telling you found something they did funny is a great way to compliment them without objectifying them.
If you do compliment the person you are texting and it goes over well make sure you don’t continue to compliment them. Overwhelming them with compliments may seem like a nice thing to do, but in reality, it can feel shallow to the people receiving them.
If your compliments are self-deprecating (like “why would someone as perfect as you respond to me?”) it will make the person you are texting question your confidence, regardless of whether you are joking or not.
When giving a compliment to someone you are flirting with ask yourself these questions:
- Does this compliment put them in a weird spot when responding?
- Is the compliment solely based on looks, and could be perceived as objectifying?
- Could I send this compliment to anyone or is it specific to them?
- Have I already sent too many compliments?
- Would I like to receive this compliment?
Tip 6: Don’t Get Discouraged
It’s easy to look at a conversation where the person you were messaging stopped responding, and be turned off of online dating completely. You may even have a conversation that is regrettable or embarrassing, but you should look at that as a learning opportunity. It may be a hit to your confidence, but that’s a part of online dating. There are plenty of people out there who will like you for you, and if you stick to it you will find one of those people. Keep messaging, you’ll only get better with experience.
The dating world is changing, and you’ll want to change with it. If you follow these 6 tips you’ll have a leg up on the competition, and you’ll be more likely to find someone that likes you for who you are.
Share this article with anyone you think needs to hear this. For how to pick the perfect dating profile photos check out our article on that here!