How to impress a woman on a first date

Midnight in Paris

Oh the terrifying world of dating.  That minefield of awkward silences, waiting for texts, expensive bar bills or the worst of all – the realisation that the beautiful woman in the red dress you met a week previously, is indeed a full blown crazy-cat lady.  We’ve all been there, countless times no doubt, but if you’re reading this then the likelihood is that you’re yet to make a true success of it.

Equally, if you’re reading this, then I’m going to presume that you have indeed over come the first hurdle and already asked her out.  If so, then take a moment to pat yourself on the back. It takes serious balls to actually ask a woman out, and however you ended up doing it – she’s said yes – so well done you. 

The next hurdle, however, is a pretty big one too. How to actually impress a woman on a first date is anyones’ guess.  They all want different things, so that cute little French bistro that Miss A simply adored last week, might be Miss B‘s idea of kitsch hell. The place is not so much the problem, rather it’s the impression you give off that will determine if there’s going to be a date number 2 or not.

La la land

And whilst some may not necessarily be every woman’s’ idea of the perfect man – we’re prepared to bet that these few simple tips will bag even the most Neanderthal of men date #2 or even #3.

The key to impressing her on a first date is quite simply a string of gentlemanly gestures. No matter what women say about wanting a ‘bad boy’, trust us when we tell you that they don’t. Not really anyway. Yes they may hark on about boys in bands with tattoos up their arms and unwashed hair, but what they really really want is a gentleman.  

You don’t need to look like one, but you sure as hell need to act like one. Have you ever heard a woman say “he was such an a**hole last night, I can’t wait to see him again” – no, nor have we. We’re not saying you need to go overboard, but here are a few simple tips to impress her on a first date…

La La land

Make an effort with appearance: She will have spent hours talking to friends discussing outfits, weighing up the pros and cons of wearing heels, doing her hair and make-up and accessorising, so make an effort yourself.  Nothing over the top, but a crumpled shirt and trainers does not a good impression make.

Open doors for her: From the door of a cab, to the restaurant and the bar afterwards, it’s really quite easy, but you’d be surprised to hear how few men actually do this anymore – trust us, she will notice.

Keep curbside: An easy chivalrous gesture that she may not even consciously notice, but still worth the effort.

Take her coat/ give her yours: When you walk into the restaurant take her coat, when you’re walking out help her back on with it.  If it starts to rain and you don’t have an umbrella then volunteer your own coat as a rain shield.

Put your phone away: Put it on silent or turn it off – nothing say’s “You’re boring” or “I’m not interested” to a woman more than a man texting or taking calls whilst on a date.

Compliment her: Make them spontaneous and casual and ideally the earlier the better into the date, do not, and we repeat do not say ‘you have beautiful eyes’ – it is vomit inducing.  Instead, stick to a more passing ‘you look great’, when you first see her.  Anything after the first hour will seem planned and contrived.

James Dean tuxedo

Ask questions: Yes, you want her to hear all your best qualities, but women love to talk to, and more than that, they love to be listened to. And we’re talking, actually listened to. Don’t just nod and smile – engage and expand.

Know the difference between confidence and cockiness: If ever there were a fine line, this would be it.  Similar to the above, you want her to know your best qualities, but stay revered – no woman wants to hear how much you earn, how many models you’ve slept with or how large your family estate is (at least not on the first date she doesn’t).

Pay the bill: Call us old fashioned, but we still believe that the man should pay the bill on the first date, especially if he is the one who initiated it.  If you find yourself on a date with a new wave feminist who insists on paying (and you want to see her again) then still refuse, instead suggest that she pays for an after dinner drink or even the second date. 

Don’t try to sleep with her on the first date: This is absolutely paramount.  No good relationship has ever come from a one night stand.  No matter how well you got on or how many cocktails were consumed, put her in a taxi and bid goodnight. That’s what a gentleman would do.


Further Reading