by Rebecca Adams
note: It's that time of the year again for the magical midnight: New
Years Eve! That means parties, and parties means fun and flirting.
Get the lowdown and give a hi-five for proper flirt techniques from
our own Kinsey Institute intern.]
Flirt. Not seduce. I have a 2515 page dictionary with four definitions
of "seduce" and they all mean "to manipulate a person into something
he or she doesn't want to do." I refuse to believe that the glorious
readers of Clean Sheets would ever knowingly manipulate a
person not equally engaged in the scene. We leave that to salespeople
Nor is this a How-To for ladies seeking a husband -- any
husband. I scoff at The Rules and other tactical approaches
to capturing a man, and so should you. Women are far too powerful
to require tricks and baubles to enrapture potential lovers. Human
to human, we can arouse and intrigue far more tantalizingly than
with any homogenized, sterilized, shrink-wrapped technique for catching
Instead, this is about capturing your erotic power and channeling
it to attract all the sensual attention you want. You're going to
That starts with masturbation.
Alone in your bed, or in your bathtub, or in your kitchen or your
car or your backyard, you, Goddess Temptress, can give yourself
everything you want -- ecstatic orgasms, passionate caresses...
You have no need for anyone's lust but your own. You flirt not to
fill in a gap but to enhance something you already have and love.
Step 1. Masturbate immediately before going to the place where
the flirting will happen -- better still, masturbate in the car on
the way there. Come as you pull into the parking lot. Stroll in
with your cervix still pulsing and thighs still vibrating. Smile.
Step 2. Have a goal. What are you looking for? Wanna get laid?
Wanna tease and torment? Wanna imprison the lust of every man in
the room without speaking to a single one of them? Your mission
defines your approach.
Step 3. Have a target. You may have already identified a man or
you may be searching for one. A few words on choosing rewarding
Don't eliminate anyone on the basis of age. Older men have the
patience, technique, and staying power foreign to younger men. Younger
men have the energy, stamina, and sheer libido. However, either, properly approached,
will willingly -- no, enthusiastically! -- devote himself to your
Do eliminate on the basis of sex appeal. It can be difficult to
judge who's worthy of your puss and who's a waste of erectile tissue
without a test drive. My personal criterion is to imagine his face
collapsed in ecstasy. If the image makes you catch your breath,
move in for the kill. If it makes you snort or wince or giggle,
Step 4. Once you've identified the mortal you wish to conquer,
you need an approach that will mystify and bewitch, without intimidating.
A few suggestions:
1. Be honest about what you want, and be clear about what you
don't want. This is not because "Men like women who know what they
want," or "Your man will love your straightforward attitude." Who
cares what they want? This is about you getting what will make you
happiest. If you make him guess and he guesses wrong, then you're
If you don't get a response you were looking for, a "second chance"
method I like is to pout gently and say, "No, you were supposed
to say..." and then give him an opportunity to make it up to you.
Reward him lavishly when he performs the desired behavior. I recommend
a quiet, low, somewhat possessive laugh and an affectionate smile.
2. Certainly you may just want to play the game. Go for it. Tease.
Giggle. "Accidentally" brush against him. Look at him, look away,
then look back -- peer up at him from under up-turned lashes, let
your eyes fill with lust, let your lips part. Do all those Cosmo-Glamour
tricks and floor him with your flawless mastery of courtship. Give
mixed signals, keep him guessing. He won't know what to do with
himself, but he'll keep trying.
But for God's sake be original. Nothing nauseates me more than
women replicating the motions they learned by rote in some flirtation
class. (I think they hold them at sorority houses, day long seminars
on flirtation, lipliner application, and how to play softball without
messing up your hair.)
There is something about you that is completely irresistable.
If I knew you, I'd be able to tell you what it is. I'd look you
up and down and say, "God, your belly. Do something brilliant with
your belly!" Or, "Where did you learn to do that thing with your
wrist? Christ!" Or, "You have the most astonishing rack I've ever
laid eyes on." Or, "It's your posture. You stand like a woman who
knows where she's going and knows she'll get there, so she has no
need to hurry." And then you'd know, and you should use it. But since
I don't know you, you gotta find your irresistibility on your own.
3. Unsafe sex is not sexy, it's self-destructive. The Goddess
Temptress knows her body is a shrine to be protected. Unless sex
is not on your agenda, or you've already talked about your safe sex
boundaries with your target, incorporate it into your flirtation.
A few come-on lines that involve condoms:
4. Above all, listen to your instincts. Your body is an information-gathering
machine that sends you all kinds of information about the person
you're talking to, if you just listen to it. From his scent, his
temperature, from the tiny expressions that flit transiently across
his face, all of these bits of information accumulate into "intuition."
It's not a sixth sense, and it's not mysterious -- it's just too
subtle to measure. Your body knows how your target is responding
to you and what you can do to train his response to what you want.
Ask your body what she sees. Listen to your answer.
In the unlikely event that you face rejection -- ugh, rejection.
What an ugly word. Instead let's think about it as progress, as
a learning experience. Certainly a man's unreadiness for your deep
personal magnetism is no evidence that you're less powerful. He's
probably not worth your energy anyway. Right?
I recognize that none of these thoughts are terribly soothing
in the face of a glaring "No" from a person you wanted to want you,
but remember flirting is frivolous. Save your heartbreak for a
long-term lover, or for a pet, for god's sake. One man who seems
attractive and engaging does not warrant self-recrimination and doubt.
To flirt is to skate on the surface of human interaction. We flirt
to know we can attract others, to assert our erotic power.
Hey, I'm a single girl, I know how it is. Even though I have loving,
passionate friendships, a supportive family, fulfilling work, and
a really great cat, I still have those moments when all
I want in the world is The One, that mythical creature as intangible
and perfect as a unicorn who will stroll into my life and engage
Flirting, by its very nature, will probably never get me that.
But that's not what flirting is for.
Flirt for yourself, not for them. Be a gooey, chocolatey tidbit,
a warm, sensuous fondue, a flaming dessert, all wispy meringue and
licking flame. Do it because most of the time we have to be bread
and butter, and every now and then it's nice to be a juicy, luscious,