The Ultimate Guide to Kissing
Kissing is not only the way we define intimacy in our brain, but it also releases chemicals that make us more relaxed and able to perform - something that builds connection. Chinese medicine actually believes that the mouth and the tongue have a connection to the heart, which means that kissing actually attaches people to each other.
Given the importance of the kiss, we've created a rounded up all of our kissing advice in one neat package. And remember: the best way to become an expert kisser? Practice. Lots and lots of practice. Happy kissing!
Related: Does Your Date Have an Evil First Name?
SHOULD YOU KISS?
Sometimes it can be hard to tell, we know. Here are a few surefire signs that you should take a deep breath and go in for the kiss.
1) If you lean in closer and they don't break eye contact.
Simple and easy to read! If they don't back away the closer you get, they're down with the kissing. If they do, they're…less so.
2) If they keep looking at your lips/mouth as you talk.
This is date speak for "I'm interested in kissing you and testing the waters by staring intently at your lips and hoping you get the message."
3) They are touching some other part of you.
Your arm, your leg, the small of your back, and even good ol'fashion hand-holding is usually good indication a person isn't repulsed by you. Going in for a kiss when you already have your arm around someone is a pretty easy transition.
AVOID BAD BREATH
Fear not; I've found the solution. Below, you'll find answers to five of the most frequently asked questions about bad breath. Heed the advice that follows to ensure that your next failed kiss has everything to do with you and nothing to do with your halitosis:
1. Watch for verbal cues from people you speak with. Do they avoid facial proximity or put a hand near their nose?
2. Check the very back of your tongue for a film of white residue. That stuff is basically congealed bacteria. And it stinks.
3. Floss. Raise floss to nostril. Take a whiff.
4. Chew on a pen for a few minutes. Raise pen to nostril. Take a whiff.
5. Breathe into a glass (rather than the palm of your hand) and then sample the bouquet.
HOW TO INITIATE
In kissing as in life, you usually can't just go from zero to sixty, and locking lips when you haven't made any other sort of physical contact yet is definitely not for the shy or tentative.
1) Make eye-contact with their lips
Okay, sure, it sounds really creepy written out like that. But it works! If you two are talking, look at his or her mouth which sends the subliminal message that you're thinking about kissing. It seems a bit obvious in the light of day, but when it comes to making a first kiss happen, you need to be obvious. (I hasten to add, don't stare solely at their mouth - break for a little eye contact now and then, and if after a while you still haven't gone in for a kiss, switch strategies.)
2) Get close, lean in
Going in for a kiss can be really scary, so for your sake you want to make the transit time as short as possible, to minimize the agonizing "oh my godddd" while your head travels to theirs, so move close. Know that once you get to a certain amount of closeness, even if you're just talking, it becomes pretty obvious that a kiss is going to happen. This is okay! You're both on the same page, otherwise he or she would move back and continue conversing at a normal distance.
3) Touch their face
If you need one more beat before working up the nerve to kiss, touch their face or their hair. It's intimate, sweet, and creates one more little bridge between "Not Kissing" and "Kissing." Once you're ready (and seriously, don't take all night!), you can use your hand on their face or head to tilt their face towards yours or (gently! not insistently) pull them in.
KISSING AND TELLING
In the event that someone asks you how your boyfriend's kissing technique is, you can always just say "no comment." But should the situation arise, here's how to handle it:
The asker: Your best friend
The answer: Every single TMI detail, obviously
The asker: An acquaintance
The answer: Tell her it's great and leave it at that
The asker: A frenemy
The answer: "Better than whoever you're kissing, if there is anyone."
For more tips from How to Kiss: The Ultimate Guide, visit HowAboutWe!