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How to go on a first date

Make it fun & stress-free

You finally got up the nerve to ask "Mr Apt #5" on a date, after weeks of sweet hellos in the hall, sultry glances and small talk over laundry. But what now? You’ve landed the date, so you get two thumbs up -- but let’s go over how to make it as special as the first day you laid eyes on him. If you're out of practice, here are a few things that you should do (and not do) to make this a successful first date.

CHOOSING THE PERFECT OUTFIT
Let's begin with clothing selection. We all have something in our closet that makes us feel sexy, beautiful and confident, whether it's our favorite black dress, necklace or alluring fragrance. Choose something that makes you feel great and portrays who you are, "Dress to give him cues on who you are, and also dress for your expectation of the date," says Ellen T White, author of Simply Irresistible: Unleash Your Inner Siren and Mesmerize Men With Help From the Most Famous and Infamous Women in History. "If you wear something really revealing, be prepared to defend your honor -- which could make that first date really fun…leading to that second date!"

 

WHERE TO GO?
Now that you've picked the perfect ensemble, what about location? It's important to find a place that you both will feel comfortable. At this time, you may want to skip the dimly lit candlelight dinner for a possible future date. Dr Gilda, author of Match.com's Suddenly Single advice column, suggests a place with, "Starbucks ambiance -- easy, comfortable, casual -- but a little more 'restauranty.'" She also recommends, "Meet at a neutral place where you can make a quick getaway if you need to." Stumped for good ideas? Find 100s of great date ideas here>>

 

TIME FOR TALK
So you two have arrived at a neutral location, you've settled at your table and the server has taken you order. This is the time for you to get to know each other. Debbie Mandel, author of Turn On Your Inner Light) offers these tips to get acquainted:

  • Slow down, don't rush and reveal. Let your date hunt.
  • Listen attentively -- nothing is as charming as a good listener.
  • Be upbeat, not a downer. Everyone loves a positive, witty person.
  • Don't malign your exes.
  • Don't drink alcohol, or limit yourself to a single glass of wine.

Speaking of exes -- this is definitely not the time to dish about them or any other dirty laundry. Even if the person fishes for information about your past relationship find a way around it. You may be on the road to starting a new relationship and bringing up the past would not be appropriate at this time.

Most importantly, "if you go out and find that the sweetie of your dreams is a Vegan PETA activist and you've been hunting your own food for years, be honest and let them know it's not going to work out", says Adryenn Ashley , author of Every Single Girl's Guide to Her Future Husband's Last Divorce. "Don't change who you are to keep dating, or -- even worse -- to get married. Your true self will emerge eventually and lead to a lot of disappointment."

 

JUST BE YOU
It is essential to be yourself -- after all, he did accept your invitation. So to him, there was already something amazingly interesting about you. Make sure what sparked his interest in the first place is what you show while on the date.

Remember just one more thing through it all: Have fun!

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