How to prepare for a date

The most clichéd dating advice I’ve ever heard is, "Don’t think too much about it." To be fair, though, this isn’t wrong.

Of course you should put some thought into your date. Sure, overthinking probably won’t result in success, but "underthinking" can be just as disastrous.

It’s important to understand what you’ll be getting into. More importantly, you need to be ready for what’s to come.

Before a date, you should never need more than an hour to fully prepare. It may feel like you’re scrambling, but if you use every minute wisely, you’ll have more than enough time to prepare for a successful date (which, of course, will lead to future dates).

Here are the seven things that every guy should make sure he does in the hour before his date.

1. Make sure you’re “socially lubricated.”

There is no one right way to pregame a date. For some, pregaming might mean a nice big glass of Carbernet; for others, it could be a couple shots of whiskey.

Hell, maybe you need a spliff to ease the nerves. Lord knows we’ve all been there.

No matter what you choose, it’s important to loosen up before your date.

I’m not saying you should pull up to a first date sauced and slurring your words — or worse, stoned as a bat. In moderation, a little social lubrication can go a long way in battling those nerves.

2. Clean yourself up, son.

Shower (if you haven’t yet). Wash your face. If you’re a bearded guy, make sure you’re trimmed properly. If not, it’s probably a good idea to give yourself a fresh shave.

Make sure you look presentable, since your appearance will set the tone for the rest of your date. Appearance is key. If you look sloppy, what kind of impression do you think that will make about how you handle the rest of your life?

Don’t forget cologne.

3. Listen to some music.

Before football games in high school, I used to put on the entire "Ready to Die" album from The Notorious BIG true "pregame" music.

There was something about that album that pumped me up and got me ready for football. And at the end of the day, dates aren’t all that different from big games — I mean, both have winners and losers, right?

So to make sure you’re mentally prepared, it’s not a bad idea to spend some time before a big date listening to the right type of music. It’ll get you in the zone. I recommend something sultry, like Drake.

Be careful what you listen to, though. Pick the wrong Drake song, and you’ll be stuck thinking about your ex the entire night.

4. Make sure you’re strapped with your date essentials.

I call it the Holy Trinity of dating.

It’s easy for women to carry around what they need; that’s what purses are for.

Yet for the men out there — at least ones who don’t carry pocketbooks — you’re going to have to devote some thought to this. But fear not. That’s what I’m here for.

If you’ve got an hour to kill before a date, just make sure that you’ve got the Holy Trinity. It’s simple: chapstick, gum and condoms.

You may not need all of the three — hell, you might not need any of the three — but they’re important to keep on you just in case.

ABP, man. Always. Be. Prepared.

5. Do some brief cardiovascular exercise.

While it’s probably not a good idea to work out too hard or get too sweaty before a first date, I would recommend getting the blood flowing a little bit.

Whether that means knocking out a couple of pushups or pullups (if you have one of those handy on-top-of-the-door pull-up bars) before your shower, if you have any hopes of getting intimate with your date, you’re going to want to be in the best physical shape as possible.

Granted, I’m not sure 20 pushups will compensate for the beer gut you developed in college. But they can’t hurt.

6. Do a quick — but thorough — background check.

If you have some time to kill before a first date, it doesn’t hurt to do a little background check.

Yes, I’m talking the works: Facebook, Google, LinkedIn (from an incognito browser, naturally).

You’re going to want to get an idea of who you’re meeting. By stalking this person’s social media profiles, you’ll get a better impression of what’s going to make the best impression.

If she’s wearing a Bob Dylan T-shirt in a photo, it might be in your best interest to drop a Dylan lyric over dinner. If she’s posing on a yacht in a lot of her pictures, it might work for you to pick up the check. I don’t know — it’s just an idea.

Also, it’s important to check she doesn’t have any priors or a criminal history before the date — unless you’re into that type of shit (I know I sort of am).

7. Make sure your funds are secured.

This one might be the most important thing to do in the time before your date: MAKE SURE YOUR FUNDS ARE SECURED.

There will be nothing more humiliating and harmful to your chances for a second date than offering to pick up the check and realizing you don’t have enough money to cover it.

If you’re going plastic, make sure you’ve got your credit card(s). If you’re looking to pay in cash, make sure you’ve got big enough bills to cover the cost of the meal — without having to scrap together crumpled singles and fives. That will just make you look unprepared and plebeian.

You’ve been out of the dating game for a while now. Or, you’ve managed to finally get a date with that cutie you’ve been eyeing for a while. Whatever the reason, you’re nervous and you don’t know how to prepare for the date with this special lady. You want to make a good first impression, but you don’t want to come off as someone who is desperate to please her, because that’s sure to turn her off. Well, the best way to go about things is to begin by keeping a check list for yourself.

How to Prepare for a Date

Cleanliness is first priority

You should always take a bath before going on a date, especially if you’re not in the habit of bathing daily. You also should remember to brush your teeth, clip and clean your nails, check for bad breath keeping mints in your pocket just in case, make sure your arm pits or feet don’t stink, etc.

Hydrate yourself

Especially if you’re going out drinking at a bar. Alcoholic drinks are notorious for making you feel thirsty, which in turn might push you to drink more. So be smart and drink at least 2-3 glasses of water before your date arrives. Not to mention, drinking water also keeps bad breath at bay!

Smell good

How to prepare for a date? By beginning at the basics – smelling good. The sense of smell is one of the most important and yet one of our most underrated senses. The way you smell subconsciously tells your date a lot about you. For example, if you smell like oaks and pine, it tells her you’re more of a manly man. If you smell like rose or jasmine, it tells her you’re more of a feminine guy. And if you smell like rotten eggs, it tells her you’re a disgusting man. Getting the drift? And girls, this is especially important for you, perfumes like La Vie Est Belle By Lancôme, Shalimar Guerlain, Shi from Alfred Sung, Contradiction from Ck, etc.

Eat small snacks beforehand

It might sound counterintuitive, but the fact remains that when you’re on a date, you don’t immediately order food. You talk, get to know each other, and then order food, which by itself could take anywhere between 20 minutes to one hour. And what exactly will you do when your stomach makes noises? Not to mention the fact that nobody is at their best on an empty stomach. So munch on something light before heading out.

Practice smiling in front of the mirror

This is more important if you’re the type of guy whose smiles come off more as the Joker’s smile. Practice makes perfect, so stand in front of a mirror and practice all the different smiles that you use. When you find one that you like, stick to it and flash it in front of your date!

Make sure you wear the proper clothes

Don’t underestimate how your dress determines your date’s impression of you. When working on how to prepare for a date, keep in mind to dress according to the place you’re going to. For example, if you’re going to that fancy new restaurant in town, men should opt for a casual suit and women should choose for that cute dress. If you’re going to a fundraiser, men should opt for a tuxedo and women should choose something like a fancy cocktail dress. However, if you’re going to a local pub or an Indian restaurant, you can dress more casually. However, remember never to show up in a hoodie. These are thing considered “too casual” you know.

Ask her about her food preferences

Because it would be extremely awkward if she has seafood allergy and you take her to a sushi place. Or worse, what do you think is gonna happen if she’s a vegan and you take her to a steakhouse?

Clean your car

Especially if you plan on picking or dropping her off. Because which girl would ever want to go out on a second date with a guy who is unable to clean his car for at least special occasions? It’s a major turn off. When you’re done cleaning your car, take your cologne and spritz some of it in the car for added measure.

Keep your phone on silent mode

It’s extremely rude if your phone constantly buzzes with stupid WhatsApp messages or Facebook notifications when you are having a date. Just put it on silent mode or airplane mode if you can and enjoy your date. This is especially so if the two of you are watching a movie together. She deserves 100% of your time, not 80% or 60% of it. Be classy.

Clean your apartment

If you’re expecting or hoping that your date comes back to your apartment, then you have to clean your place. Not many people will tell you about this aspect of how to prepare for a date, which makes it all the more important! And while you’re at it, make sure your condoms aren’t lying openly near your bedside. Be a gentleman and at least keep them inside the nearest drawer.

Other things to consider

Think positively and maintain a good mood by talking to a good friend, listen to soothing music or watching your favorite comedy.

Make sure everything is on schedule, like the time and place for the date.

Stay calm and act naturally when dating because nervousness will only make things worse like saying or doing wrong things.

Make sure you take enough cash, your preferred credit card. If your date ends up paying the bill for the bill, you can find ways to treat your date in other ways, like watching a movie.

How to prepare for a date

So you’ve gone from online chat to meeting up face-to-face. This is your big chance. How are you going to make a good impression on this first date? There are several things to consider.

Where should you go?

A first date needs to be somewhere you can talk exclusively with the person you are meeting in order that you can get to know each other better. Therefore, somewhere reasonably quiet might be good. Going to the movies might not be such a good idea, because you won’t be able to have a proper conversation, unless of course you want to discuss the movie somewhere afterwards. Similarly, it might not be a good idea to meet with friends or family on a first date, as you won’t get the chance to talk exclusively to each other.

What to say

On your first date you are trying to find out about the other person and generally get to know them. You need some conversation and questions to ask, while at the same time being prepared to give answers to questions you are asked. This means asking questions which will make your date feel good and not awkward. If you know they play a sport or music, for example, ask about these things. Try to find some common ground; similarity is one of the strongest predictors of attraction.

Remember that questioning is not interrogation. Its function is to find out information and to make your date feel good that you are interested in them. Ask open questions to give the other person a chance to expand on their answers: ‘Why do you like. ‘ rather than, ‘Do you like. ’

One of the things many people get anxious about is that the conversation will dry up and that there might be periods of uncomfortable silence. One solution to this is to think of the things you will ask or talk about in advance. In other words, take some conversation with you to your date.

Finally, if you are nervous, which is perfectly natural, why not rehearse the date with a friend, or just mentally rehearse it in your head? This is a tactic used by athletes before big events, and you can employ it before a first date.

Self-Disclosure

In the course of questioning your date and allowing them to question you, you are engaging in a process of mutual self-disclosure. Self-disclosure is the process by which a person conveys to another person information about themselves. Irwin Altman and Dalmas Taylor suggested that self-disclosure may be defined in terms of the breadth of disclosure (the range of things discussed), and depth of disclosure (the level of intimacy of your disclosure) (Altman and Taylor, 1973).

In their review of self-disclosure and liking, Nancy Collins and Lynn Carol Miller noted three things:

  • Those who disclose at intimate levels tend to be liked more than those who disclose at more superficial levels. Having said that, you wouldn’t want to disclose too much intimate information on a first date.
  • We disclose more to the people we like. So disclosing information to someone may well make them feel that they are liked.
  • We tend to like other people more as a result of disclosing to them. So, someone who opens up to you may be starting to like you.

Quite obviously there are some don’ts when it comes to disclosure on a date. It might not be a good idea to talk about an ex, for example: A date is not a counseling session. Similarly, it might not be a good idea to discuss any other problems you may have. You want the other person to leave having a good impression of your date and of you being happy, which is generally more attractive than appearing negative.

Be Yourself?

Well, maybe. Obviously don’t try to be someone you are not. For instance, you are probably not a pilot on an Airbus 380 or a brain surgeon. However, if you have been told you are pushy, slightly arrogant, or timid, for example, try to modify these behaviors on a date.

Be positive. Even if the date doesn’t go well, you will at least leave a favourable impression. Remember they are associating you with the situation, and it is possible to be found attractive by association with a positive experience.

And smile. You are more attractive when you smile. There are also differences between false and forced smiles and natural smiles. Each type employs different facial muscles. Forced smiles are smiles of the lower face, whereas genuine and natural smiles involve muscles around the eyes, too. On your date, try to smile naturally and genuinely.

Altman I., & Taylor, D. (1973). Social penetration: The development of interpersonal relationships. New York. Holt.

Collins, N. L. & Miller, L. C. (1994) ‘Self-disclose and liking: A Meta-analytic review’ Psychological Bulletin, 16 (3), 457-475.

How to prepare for a date

I’m going to go ahead and say it: There are loads of weird things many women do before getting ready for a date. So many factors are involved in the meticulous process that is preparing for dinner and drinks with the cutie you’ve been eyeing from afar for ages. And I think it’s safe to say that most of us are a little guilty of throwing logic out the steamy window in favor of giddy excitement.

Personally, I think the most important thing to keep in mind on a first date is staying true to your personality. But since that doesn’t usually require much preparation, I make sure I feel and look good. While I go through the typical getting-ready process of outfit, hair, and makeup prep, there’s a lot more to it than that. From over-thinking accessories to studying microscopic facial hairs to making sure every strand of head hair is curled the right way, the process centers around feeling fabulous.

So the next time you’re getting ready to meet bae for date night, don’t be surprised if you find yourself relating to a few (or all) of the things below. I’m willing to bet most humans do weird things when getting ready for date night, but these are some crazies I’ve experienced firsthand.

1. Wash Up From Head To Toe

Showers are often super quick occasions for washing the most important parts before heading out the door for work. Most of the time, I don’t get to exfoliate, condition, or even dry brush because I’m in such a hurry. But when it comes to dates, I take that extra time to get fully ready and wash up from head to toe, usually making two rounds with my loofah. Because you never know where the night will lead you, right?

2. Get Rid Of Unwanted Hairs

So maybe I’m the only one who skimps on showers every once in a while. But I know for a fact I’m not the only one who’s lazy about shaving, waxing, or plucking. Let’s be real with each other: We’re not going through that whole hair removal process if it isn’t for a good reason, amirite? So while I’ll shave my legs on a regular basis, and handle my armpits occasionally, I never tend to do it all at once. For those who prefer hairlessness, dates tend to be the exception.

3. Struggle To Find Matching Lingerie

Underwear is usually a pull-something-out-of-the-drawer-and-go affair. But when a date is lined up, choosing it can take some extra thought. Your worn-in boxer briefs from freshman year of college and your favorite T-shirt bra aren’t exactly ideal for a special night out. Whether you’ll be scrounging to find those lacy panties (that you never wear) or you’re busy doing laundry in order to wash your nice bras, finding the right set of underthings can be a pain.

4. Try On A Bazillion Outfits

If there’s one task that never gets easier when preparing for dates, it’s choosing the perfect outfit. From top to toe, your date outfit should make you feel like you’re walking down a runway. Considering dates can lead to anything, it makes things quite the struggle.

5. And Another Bazillion Accessories

Earrings, necklaces, bracelets, watches, anklets, clutches, handbags, platforms, stilettos, heels, sneakers, a fanny pack. Really, the possibilities are endless. Before you find the perfect combination of accessories, you’re probably going to be trying them all on.

6. Smell Your Armpits

While I’m not one to douse myself with perfume, I don’t exactly want to smell bad on a date either. Thus, I will always catch a whiff of my pits before I step out the door.

7. Floss

I rarely floss, but going on a date is the perfect excuse to whip out that coated string and clean all the cracks and crevices in your chompers. Oh, and you may want to brush and use mouth wash as well. You can never be too prepared.

8. Turn On All The Lights To Do Your Makeup

How else are you supposed to do your makeup? While date night lighting is typically dim and romantic, many of us want our faces to be applied flawlessly in the event that we come across some horrid fluorescent lighting on our adventures. Plus, cakey foundation and too much blush are never a good pairing.

9. Hold Your Mouth Wide Open Until Your Mascara Is Perfect

You know this face. Eyebrows high, mouth wide open, looking like a fish out of water. If you don’t already do it every time you’re applying mascara, you’ll definitely do it when preparing for a date. It’s practically a requirement to get full, plush, voluminous lashes.

10. Apply 13 Different Kinds Of Lipstick

Some of us like giving extra attention to our lips come date night, but the question is, with what shade? A sexy red á la Taylor Swift? A vampy or nude matte shade inspired by Kylie Jenner? Or perhaps a brightly fun pink that’s so very Carrie Underwood? Be prepared to take at least 20 minutes deciding on just one.

11. Take A Dance Break

I’m pretty sure it’s impossible to get ready without blasting your favorite playlist. It’s time for a well-deserved dance break.

12. Position The Ladies

Chances are you want your ta-tas to look good tonight, and that may take some positioning. Whether you’re pulling your pants up as high as they’ll go or pulling your shirt down to get just the right amount of cleavage for your liking, you might have to do some readjusting.

13. Take A Lot Of Selfies

Let’s be real. We usually don’t get dolled up like this all the time, so it’s worth photographing the amazing results. Plus, if you’re feeling yourself, why not post a gorgeous selfie on Instagram?

Ultimately, lots of weird stuff goes into getting ready for a date. But it’s all worth it when you’re feeling confident and comfortable in your own skin. That is, of course, the most important thing you can aim for when on a date; so making that happens should be your top priority.

Want more beauty tips? Check out the video below, and be sure to subscribe to Bustle’s YouTube page for more hacks and tricks!

How to prepare for a date

Preparing for a first date can be incredibly stressful for most guys. If you feel that way you're not alone! Fortunately, there are a few things that you can do that will really reduce your stress and ensure that the date goes well.

If you follow our steps below there is a 100% chance you are going to improve your results.

How Every Guy Should Prepare For A First Date

Here’s how to get to the finish line:

1) Ask her out!

What to Say: At the end of a message, simply say something like, “I’m really enjoying talking to you. Would you be interested in meeting for coffee/lunch/a drink sometime this week?”

(How do you know if it’s the right time to ask her out? Here’s a more in-depth article on when and how to do it.)

2) Pick a convenient location.

When she agrees to meet, she might suggest a specific place. If she doesn’t, then she’s waiting to see if you’ve got what it takes to plan a date.

Which you obviously do.

Plan for a Short Date: Coffee, happy hour, lunch – there’s a reason these are the preferred first dates for seasoned online daters. You get in, see if there’s chemistry in person, and get out. Leave her wanting more.

How to Pick a Place: When it comes to location, suggest someplace halfway between you both (so neither of you has to do all the traveling).

If you don’t know the area, or you need ideas, Yelp is always helpful. Its reviews and pictures will tip you off to first date-killers, like if the place is a shit-hole, or too loud for conversation.

What to Say: Write something casual like: “I’ve been meaning to try X Café. Would you be up for that? I’m free Saturday or Sunday afternoons.”

If you want to be a real gentleman or sense she’s nervous about meeting, you can add: “Or if there’s someplace you like, I’m happy to meet there.”

This way, she gets to pick a place that’s convenient for her – and she notices how capable and considerate you are.

How to prepare for a date

3) Exchange phone numbers.

It’s always good to give her your number before a date.

What to Say: “Here’s my number in case you’re running late or something comes up.”

She’ll probably give you her number, too. If she does, it’s not an invitation to start texting the hell out of her. This is coming on too strong.

But if she starts texting you the days leading up to your date, follow her lead and go for it.

4) Continue messaging before your date.

You have her number and a date set. So now just keep your communication similar to what it’s been up to this point.

If your date is a week away, and you’ve been messaging every day or two, keep that pace. But save your best material for your date.

To up your gentleman factor, message her the day of your meeting. If you haven’t texted her yet, now’s a good time.

How to prepare for a date

What to Say: “Hey (her name), it’s (your name). I’m looking forward to meeting you today. Wanted to confirm I’ll be at X Café at 2pm. See you there!”

As far as additional texting goes, follow her lead again. If she confirms the date and then asks you a question, go ahead and continue the conversation. Otherwise, end the communication there.

5) Prepare for your date.

Don’t forget to quickly re-read her profile and the messages you’ve exchanged before your date. (This is especially important if you’ve been talking to more than one girl!)

Reviewing her profile/messages can inspire a couple things to talk about, or give you follow-up questions to ask about topics you’ve already covered.

When a guy shows up prepared with stuff to talk about, it’s kinda old-school and really smoking hot.

It’s also nice to keep in mind that this is a date, no matter how casually you’re both approaching it.

It’s not the prom; you don’t need to bring flowers. But she will notice that you made an effort to wear a clean t-shirt.

How to prepare for a date

6) Relax.

You’re meeting a cool person. You’re curious about her. You’ve got stuff to talk about.

And it’s only gonna take an hour.

You’ll be on the other side in no time: glad you met her, and ready for what comes next.

Remember: she’s probably a little nervous too. She likes you and you have a lot in common! These are exciting times!

7) Remember the purpose of the date.

You want to make sure there’s chemistry in person.

If there’s no chemistry, you won’t waste anyone’s time with a long dinner when you know you’re not feeling it.

That’s why you picked a short date – a quick, low-pressure way to meet. You can both make sure you’re attracted to each other, then leave each other wanting more.

Knowing you’re into each other, but not draining all the excitement with a three-hour dinner…

How to prepare for a date

Date night beauty is all about the preparation and making yourself accessible to being hugged, kissed and touched. Below are some valuable tips to get you ready for a romantic night with your special someone.

How to prepare for a date

How to prepare for a date

The prep

Prep in the shower or bath: Step into the shower and apply a moisture mask or vitamin E oil to your face. The heat of the shower will allow the extra moisturization to penetrate your skin and create a dewy, touchable face. While you are at it, apply some whitening strips to your teeth for sparkling, beautiful teeth.

Soak and de-bloat

Take an Epsom Salt bath if you feel bloated: If it’s a day that you don’t feel fit, or need to reduce some bloating, try an Epsom salt bath. Add 2 cups of Epsom salt to your bath and sit for 10 minutes. The Magnesium in the salt helps draw toxins and excess fluid from your body.

How to prepare for a dateExfoliate

Create a silky smooth body: Exfoliate your skin using exfoliating gloves and a gentle scrub. The gloves will make it easy to get every nook of your body! Plus the texture of the gloves will rev up your circulation and energy. Remember to exfoliate hands and feet to get them holding-hands smooth (and mani/pedi ready).

De-fuzz

After exfoliating, it is a perfect time to de-fuzz your body since the dead skin cells are removed from your skin, allowing for a closer shave. Apply a moisturizing shave cream to your legs and work your way from ankle to thigh.

How to prepare for a dateFragrance yourself

Follow with a scented, moisturizing body wash. Now is the time to start layering your favorite fragrance that makes you feel sexy and beautiful. Using a body wash with the same fragrance as your body crème and perfume helps create a lasting, unforgettable scent.

Add Layers

After your shower, apply a rich, fragranced body crème.

How to prepare for a dateMini mani/pedi

After showering, apply cuticle oil to your nails (hands and toes). Push back your cuticles and apply a therapeutic moisturizer to hands and feet. Finally, choose a sexy valentine red shade or a pale pink, depending on your mood and theme.

We recommend: Orly Precious Collection, $8 each at Ulta.

Romantic hair

Next focus on romantic hair: If your hair is long, try long loose curls with a 1 inch curling iron or even a sweet side braid. The focus is touchable, easy hair- so save the harsh updos for another time. If you hair is short or a bob, try a deep side part with side swept bangs for a sophisticated, yet romantic look.

How to prepare for a dateRomantic Makeup

Makeup should give the look of dewy, fresh skin. Start with an illuminizing primer and follow with foundation. The illumination will shine through and give the illusion of glowing skin while the primer will create a perfect base. Follow with a pink-toned blush on the apples of your cheeks. Eyes can be extra smoky or pale and soft.

For sultry, smoky eyes, try a grey-toned palette. Start with the darkest color by your lash line and gradually lighten the shade as you move up. Follow with black eyeliner rimming your top and bottom lashes. Finish with two coats of black mascara. Another option is to keep eye makeup soft and romantic with a pale color swept across the lid and a soft brown liner on top and bottom. Follow with two coats of brown mascara.

Soft eyebrows

If you are a brunette, try lightening your eyebrows 2 shades to create a soft, feminine look. If you have blond hair, your eyebrows should be 1-2 shades darker, but not too dark.

How to prepare for a dateKissable lips

Exfoliate your lips with baking soda and a cotton swab to create a soft, smooth canvas. Follow with a red gloss, soft pink or nude gloss. Using a hydrating gloss will soften the look of colored lips, while still achieving some drama.

We recommend: Succulent Lip Twin from Pixi, $18 at Target

Perfume

Finish your date night beauty look with perfume. Using the same fragrance that matches your body wash and cream, apply to all of your pulse points- wrists, neck, behind the knees, behind the ears, and even in your décolletage. For a full body experience, you can even spray at your ankles and lightly work your way up. Just don’t over do it- but a light mist will envelop your body, and not just on a couple of body parts.

How to prepare for a date

How many awful stories have you heard about when it comes to blind dates?

The dating world can be a scary world but mix in the unknown and it can be even more terrifying. Blind dates are both exciting and nerve-racking, simply because you don’t know what to expect. Preparation is the key, therefore, we have some tips for you to overcome your fears and have a great blind date!

PLAY DETECTIVE

Before your blind date, be sure to ask your matchmaker (or Vital angel) as many questions as you possibly can about your date. Your matchmaker is there to guide you as well as provide you with as much information about your date so don’t be afraid to ask questions and snoop! Getting to know your partner through your matchmaker will put you at ease and help you feel prepared before you actually meet your date. Finding out more about your date’s hobbies and interests is also a great conversation starter when you’re on your date – it gives you plenty of topics to talk about if you’re feeling awkward.

PHONE CALL

A phone call allows you to listen to your date’s voice for the first time and find out how the conversation will flow when you finally meet face to face. Talking on the phone sheds a little light so you’re not left completely in the dark. When speaking to your date on the phone, ask about their interests and hobbies, this will give you leeway when you’re on your date – you can pick up where you left off.

EXPECTATIONS

Before going on your date, don’t give yourself the impression that the date will be perfect and the person you meet will be the love of your life. You need to have realistic expectations – if there is a spark between you and your partner, that’s great. However, if there’s no spark, that’s still okay. High expectations combined with disappointment will only make you feel insecure and question yourself which is the last thing you want in the dating game. Go into the date with an open-mind, open-heart and realistic thoughts.

WEAR SOMETHING YOU’RE COMFORTABLE IN

It’s important to choose an outfit that you’ll feel confident in as well as comfortable. Wearing a tie when you usually wouldn’t make you feel out of place and not yourself, which is the complete opposite of what you should be feeling. Don’t go to dinner with 4-inch stiletto heels if you can’t walk comfortably in them – you’ll end up with sore feet by the end of the night. Wearing something you feel confident in can show off your personality and make you feel carefree throughout the date.

PREPARE QUESTIONS

Preparing some general open-ended questions is a great way to start conversations when the date feels awkward or when you’ve run out of things to discuss. Open-ended questions are a great way to start a discussion however try and veer away from controversial topics such as religion and politics. It’s a great idea to have some funny anecdotes or interesting facts as conversation starters as well.

First dates are scary, blind first dates are even more terrifying but it doesn’t have to be. You simply need to be prepared for it! Call Vital Partners today on 02 9017 8444 – let us help you to your first blind date!

How to prepare for a date

This can be understandably nerve-wracking! Where should you go? What should you do? What should you wear? And if you’ve been out of the dating game for a while, how does dating work in this day and age?

Phew, it’s a lot to take in and one thing we will say is don’t be nervous! Whatever happens, will happen, and we’re great proponents of “if it’s meant to be, it will be.”

That said, we think a first date is a great opportunity to put yourself out there and meet someone new – whether that be a friend or something more. There’s no harm in doing a little preparation, in fact, that’s good practice!

Here are some of our tips for preparing yourself:

Modern dating etiquette

With dating apps and swiping right, it can be a confusing minefield to understand dating etiquette. The good news is, while some things have evolved, the very basics remain the same. For example:

  1. Be authentic! There’s no sense in pretending to be someone you’re not in an effort to impress someone. Represent yourself honestly for the chance of building a genuine connection with someone.
  2. Show up on time. Being late communicates that someone isn’t a priority to you.
  3. Take pride in your appearance. Be dressed nicely and well-groomed!
  4. Ask about any preferences or food allergies. There’s no sense in booking the cool new sushi restaurant if your date is allergic to seafood.
  5. Make sure you have cash in your wallet. It’s not that the man always has to pay for everything anymore (you might choose to split the bill, or whoever suggested the date pays), but having cash is important in case of things like cards not working or some kind of outage meaning cards can’t be used. Having cash can save you from an awkward situation…
  6. Be courteous. Manners never go out of style!
  7. Practice being a good listener! A common mistake that some people make is to be so busy trying to impress their date with their knowledge/wit/prowess/importance that they don’t really listen. This means letting your date finish before chiming in and making sure you really understood. For example, you might paraphrase what they just said or ask clarifying questions.

There are a few more things to add here of course. One is that if there’s someone you’re interested in, approach them! Life is too short for any sort of gamesmanship – strike up a conversation and see where it takes you.

Another important consideration for the modern era is the ubiquitous mobile phone. There are so many tales of people ignoring each other to bury their faces in their phones that not picking up the phone during a meal has become a popular challenge.

We have a couple of suggestions here. Firstly, don’t pick up your phone unless you know it may be urgent (for example, someone close to you is in hospital, or someone is calling who wouldn’t call unless it was urgent). Even then, it is good manners to explain that to your date – you’re not pausing to chitchat, you’re dealing with something important.

Secondly, put your phone on silent so that you’re not tempted to check every buzz and beep. Give your date your full attention – being distracted by your phone for non-urgent reasons is just rude.

Make considered plans

It’s important to make considered plans for a first date. The aim should be to get to know someone in a setting where both of you will be comfortable. This means that it’s generally best to pick a neutral, low-pressure sort of place.

For this reason, places with a casual vibe, like a hip local café or a new brew pub can be a good choice. If the situation feels uncomfortable, it doesn’t have to last long in those places, whereas at a fine dining restaurant you may be awkwardly stuck through the next three courses.

To be extra-prepared, if you’ve got somewhere in-mind, check it out ahead of time to see what the atmosphere is like. Buzzing with people can be good, but you don’t want the noise levels so loud that you won’t hear one another.

If you’re often nervous or have social anxiety, it can be helpful to think of some good conversation starters before your date. Studies show that women in particular rate cheesy pick-up lines and empty compliments poorly, whereas someone who sparks interesting conversations can show they are intelligent and genuinely curious.

Importantly, be in the right mindset for your date. If you’re filled with self-doubt, that tends to show up and cloud your time. Practicing “self-compassion” has been shown to improve the outlook of your date. This means that instead of focusing on past dating experiences that didn’t go well, you acknowledge that frustration over dating is part of the shared human experience. The nervousness or fear you feel ahead of a date isn’t a sign that something is wrong with you, but is a common response among many people. You go into your date with the hopes of it going well and having fun.

Dressing for your date

We’ve had many gentlemen in, shopping for first date outfits. There always seems to be a mixture of nervousness and excitement. One thing we suggest is to be cognizant that you may sweat. Meeting someone new can be nerve-wracking and induce sweating, so it’s important to be mindful of this when you pick your outfit.

For example, you don’t want to wear a shirt that will show your nervous sweat stains around the armpits. Try a moisture-wicking shirt instead – there are both dress shirts and casual shirts that meet this description. Something in navy blue or even a bold print will also tend to work to hide sweat. We are currently preparing a Spring Collection of shirt styles that will update your wardrobe in fit, patterns and fabric, including moisture-wicking options.

A second thing we always suggest is to wear something that is both comfortable and appropriate for the date activity. If you’re going bowling, wear a nice casual shirt that you’ll be comfortable playing in. If you’re going to a nice restaurant, choose an outfit that you feel fits in well with the setting.

Third, think about fit. Don’t try squeezing into those trousers that barely fit anymore – this could be a recipe for an embarrassing incident! Wear clothes that fit you well without being too tight or too loose.

Importantly, wear something that speaks to your own style! If you enjoy wearing an eccentric Paul Smith flower shirt, wear that! If you are more into Peter Millar, go for it because if you’re comfortable in what you wear, you will be comfortable with yourself on the date.

Here are some outfit suggestions below:

Final thoughts

Clean, tidy and well-groomed are always the right choices when it comes to a first date. Pay attention to the cleanliness of your shoes and overall tidiness of your clothes. Use a lint roller to remove stray fluff, replace any missing buttons and trim loose threads.

Of course, if you want to look extra-smart, go for a tailored outfit! Made to fit is always a flattering choice. We at Family Britches are happy to help!

How to prepare for a date

question marks looming, EliteSingles investigated the lowdown of date preparation. And the results aren’t at all what we expected. Read on for our in-depth analysis. Surveying more than 1900 singles, EliteSingles discovered some surprising date prep secrets from both men and women.

The perks and pitfalls of scrubbing up

Arguably the most pressing question in our survey centers on whether or not singles actually enjoy getting ready for a date. Well, it turns out that men like a little spruce too! As it happens, the overwhelming majority of both men (78%) and women (85%) perceive getting ready for a date as something positive on the whole.

So what’s so good about getting ready for a date? Although they both enjoy it, men and women have very different ideas when it comes to what they like most about date prep. Just over half of the male respondents (51%) admitted they enjoy date preparation as it ramps up the anticipation, compared to only a third of women. Conversely, prepping for a first date made 43% of women feel more attractive. Only 15% of men shared the same sentiment. Interestingly, a quarter of men gained confidence from scrubbing up, whilst 8% of both genders enjoyed the “me time” factor that comes with it.

That said, for 1-in-5 men and 15% of women date prep is more irksome than awesome. Of those who admitted they weren’t overly enamored with the process, 57% of both men and women stated that they find it stressful. The next most prominent gripe shared by 24% of participants was that it’s too time-consuming. The less romantic at heart dismissed it, with 14% saying that getting ready for date feels too much like a chore.

Handbags and gladrags

One of the most obvious aspects associated with getting ready for a date is picking a knockout outfit. But is it smart or casual that wins the famous style head-to-head? It turns out dressing up is still the suit of hearts. More than half of the single women surveyed (51%) think smart is sexy, but 65% of men said casual is cool.

It seems sensible to meet in the middle ground: ladies take a step back and dress down a little, and men, step up and smarten up. Nevertheless, looking good remains a priority; 31% of men said that they would actually buy a new outfit for a date, with a similar 37% of ladies agreeing they like to dress to impress with a brand new outfit. Surprisingly, 30% of men would plan their outfit before the day of the date, with 52% of women also not leaving it to chance and putting thought into their look before their date.

No expense spared?

Men and women are fairly agreed about the amount of money they’d spend getting ready for a date. 31% of women and 30% of men would be willing to splash out $50-100 on their date preparations. Surprisingly, women were a bit thriftier than men, with only 5% willing to spend more than $150 on getting ready for a first date. Conversely, one in 5 men (23%) would spend over $100 on date prep, compared to just 17% of women. Hey big spender – it seems that the beauty and the beast gender stereotype is no longer valid when it comes to date preening and primping!

Freshen up

So, what do we all get up to when getting ready for a date night? We got a glimpse into the other side of the mirror. Men head over to the barber, with 55% penciling in a trip to the hairdresser before a big date. And looking sharp apparently includes a good shave, with 85% saying they would trim their beard or have a wet shave in preparation. Silky skin is a surprise inclusion with more than a quarter of men (27%) saying they’d go for a facial or lather on the moisturizer. Not to be outdone, picture perfect makeup (85%), a manicure (50%) and a session at the hair salon (41%) were voted as women’s top three date grooming rituals.

Men put their best foot forward to catch their date’s eye, with almost half of the single men surveyed (49%) saying that they undergo date prep routines and rituals because they want their date to find them attractive. Only 23% of women agree, with the ladies doing it for themselves. 78% of women undertake their date prep because it boosts their confidence.

Getting your mind in the game

Men and women chime on one thing however – how to get their mind in the game. The majority of men (41%) and women (38%) take a final look in the mirror before stepping out the door to be mentally prepared and for 25% of men and women the sound of love comes in the form of their favorite playlist, their top of the pops when it comes to date prep.

Date expectations

With all the time and effort that goes into being a dashing and dazzling date, it’s not just a one way street. So what do all the single ladies and bashful bachelors think of their counterparts? Men (45%) and women (57%) agree that their date’s presentation means quite a lot to them, with 10% of men thinking it’s vital and 17% women agreeing. However, beauty is not only skin deep. Men (84%) and women (68%) concur that a majority of them would not be offended if they found out their date did not put in the same amount of time and effort into getting ready for their date, agreeing that if they find each other attractive, what they both did to prepare is irrelevant.

Best be aware though, 35% of women consider being under-dressed as their biggest first date faux pas. Interestingly, 25% of men share the opposite view, stating that being overdressed is their biggest bug bear. That said, the majority of men (36%) felt that overdoing the perfume is their biggest turn-off. It’s all about moderation and balance – don’t overdo it in your eagerness to impress.

And in the modern world of technology, it seems that a high percentage of the single population do sneak a peek beforehand. Women are more likely to check their date’s social media profiles before the date-75% to be exact, compared to 59% of men. But 25% of women and 41% of men think it kills off the mystery.

The final countdown

In today’s time-scarce society, how many of your minutes would you be willing to be put into getting ready? Well, the majority of men and women take 30 minutes to an hour getting ready for a date, 54% and 46% respectively. Contrary to the “quick spruce” stereotype, 1 in 5 men would spend between 1 to 2 hours preening themselves for a date, and 39% of women would do the same. At the end of the day, if you’re a show pony or a love boat, everyone seems to enjoy a good shine and polish. Remember, the overwhelming majority of both men (78%) and women (85%) enjoy the process of getting ready for a date.

So there you have it – the next time you’re getting spick and span for a big date, you know what to prioritize (and what to avoid!). Remember to make an effort with your personal l presentation, finding the smart casual balance, spend time on your grooming and pruning but just don’t overdo the fragrance. If you’re still unsure and in need of some advice, why not check out our first date tips and questions to give you that extra boost…

Sources:

Survey statistics from EliteSingles’ ‘Dating Prep’ survey, 2017. Sample size: 1910 singles.

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How to prepare for a date

With so many relationships starting online these days, you can catch some serious feelings before you even meet someone in “real” life. While we’ll always have friends or loved ones that tell us we shouldn’t develop deep feelings for people we haven’t officially met yet, they likely don’t have any experience with clicking with people online the way you do, and their advice is easier said than done. You may have even matched with someone in another state and are looking at a potentially long-distance relationship after you meet, and things go well. While there are plenty of mature dating tips to consider, you also need to prepare for a meeting for the first time. Let’s go over a few things to make sure you’re doing to give you and your love interest the best chances of a great first meeting.

Set Realistic Expectations

The first thing you need to do before you meet your online crush is to set some realistic expectations. If you’ve been chatting for a while off whatever platform you met on, you’ve likely not only texted but talked on the phone or even video-chatted. If you’ve decided to take things to the next level and meet up, chances are the chemistry is there. Just be realistic that even if you’ve FaceTimed, your date may still look a little differently than you thought they would – and you might to them as well! If your personality and sense of humor clicked well before the meeting, they likely will in person, but be prepared for a brief period of awkwardness on both ends. You may end up meeting the love of your life, but you should also be prepared to meet someone you just want to be friends with, or they could feel the same.

Put Your Best Foot Forward, In Public

Even if you think you know this person like the back of your hand, it’s a good idea to meet in a public setting for the first date. You can never be too careful, and public spaces also offer you an easy out if you’re just not feeling things face to face the way you were online or on the phone. You also want to make sure you put your best foot forward but be authentic. Take time to groom yourself properly, wear a flattering outfit appropriate for the environment of the date, and maybe even swipe on some lipstick and your signature Sofia Vergara perfume. The point is to look like yourself, just polished and ready to meet the possible Mr. Right.

Have Some Things Planned

Just like heading into a job interview, you don’t want to “wing it” with your first meeting – especially if you’re interested in this person. Sure, some of us are dating pros, but taking time to have set topics in mind to talk about is a great start – even if you feel like you really know this person. If you’re digging their vibe, make sure you let them know you’ve been paying attention to past conversations and insert things you remember. While some people have boundaries they don’t like crossed on first dates, if you know your date is open to touch, give a gentle touch of the arm or shoulder to let them know you’re feeling a connection. The worst thing is walking away from a date feeling like you got mixed signals and then realizing you didn’t give any definitive signs you were into it either! Be straightforward and beguiling at the same time.

Follow Up – No Matter What

Unless something awful happened that made it clear there doesn’t need to be a follow-up to your date, you should always follow up. Don’t be the person that waits around for a phone call or text if you know what you want to say – and never, ever ghost someone no matter how badly you feel the date went! If it wasn’t a match, you could simply text a polite “It was so great to meet you, but I’m not interested in more than a friendship at this time.”

Hopefully, meeting your online crush will be the start of a beautiful love story – and if it’s not, there are genuinely plenty of fish in the seas. Utilize the tips as mentioned earlier to head into your first date with a level head and ready to leave a great first impression, no matter what direction your relationship ends up running in.