We’ve all been there before. You’re talking to someone, and you can’t tell if they’re really into you or not. Is this person flirting with me? Or are they just being friendly?
Sometimes it’s hard to tell, especially if you’re not used to it. But don’t worry — there are several ways to know if someone is actually making a move.
Here are interesting signs that can help determine if someone is flirting with you:
Jordyn Mastrodomenico, LCADC, LAC, CTP
Clinical Director, ChoicePoint
When their double-taps on your Instagram posts evolve into heart-eye emoji replies, DM slides, and sly innuendo as they go, the person is probably trying to flirt with you.
However, the concern arises when two people see a flirty exchange between them differently: One of you thinks it’s merely for fun, whereas the other sees it as genuine interest.
Thus, to save you from landing on the “oops” position, here are a few hints for you to check if someone is flirting with you or just bumming:
Meaningful eye contact
When someone is interested in you, they will probably keep your gaze for a longer period and make it more meaningful, whereas eye contact with friends usually consists of passing glances.
Cracking light-hearted jokes
A little light-hearted roasting may go a long way on the flirting meter, whether they’re cracking jokes, being snarky, or engaging in lively banter with you. And also, since humor is a great way to capture someone’s attention, this is the first step of flirtation for many people.
They pay attention to minor details
We’ve all done it: Talked to someone at the pub who was absolutely out of it. But if a good listener shows up — someone who nods in agreement, makes follow-up inquiries, and brings up comments you’ve already made — that’s a telltale sign that they’re interested.
Slight physical contact
Observe any physical contact that occurs between you. When they speak to you or reach for you, do they touch your shoulder or gently caress your fingers?
Another possibility is that they keep running into you, picking imaginary lint out of your clothes, or straightening your collar. All of these behaviors serve to satisfy their desire to be near you.
They hunch in
This one is more straightforward. It’s more likely that someone is flirting with you if they lean closer to you.
Dating Expert, Plenty of Fish
Their body language is inviting
Body language is heavily studied for a variety of reasons. We, as people, often express our intent and feelings through the way we move and behave around others.
Sometimes the subtle clues are the most obvious:
- Are they making meaningful direct eye contact or initiating casual yet intimate physical touch?
- When seated, is their body angled away or towards you?
- Noticing how they physically react in your presence will be a good sign of whether they’re flirting or just being friendly. As the saying goes, “Listen to their words but watch their actions.”
Related: Why is Body Language Important?
Their messages are meaningful
Everyone’s communication style is different when messaging through text, social media, or dating apps.
However, a genuine tone of voice (for example, enthusiastic responses that match your energy), responding to your question and asking their own questions in response, the use of emojis, quick responses, and length of responses are worth keeping an eye on to indicate interest level.
A good flirter should match your energy and engage in a two-way conversation!
They hint at making date plans
With 2/3 of singles saying that dating gives them anxiety, the person you’re talking to might be too shy to outright ask you on a date, so instead, they might ask you about your weekend plans or keep mentioning a great restaurant that you both really enjoy.
If they are intentional with their questions and dig deeper about your favorite movie or favorite place to get drinks, they might be testing the waters to see if flirting will lead somewhere more tangible, like a date.
Dating Coach for Men
They keep making “unintentional” physical contact
Few people will throw their cards on the table and show you their hand if they’re not 100% certain their feelings are reciprocated. So instead, they’ll drop hints.
Both men and women drop hints by way of seemingly innocuous or accidental physical contact. Maybe they’ll let their leg rest on yours under the table or let their hand on your back linger for an extra second.
At first, you may think this contact is unintentional, but the more they do it, the more certain you can be that this touch isn’t so accidental after all.
They keep asking questions
Flirting and interest often overlap. It’s possible that someone asking you a million questions isn’t into you romantically but rather just finds you super interesting.
However, if this happens within the context of a date or in a romantic setting, you can assume they’re into you. This is a subconscious way to flirt. If the person weren’t interested, they wouldn’t ask you so many follow-up questions.
They’re comfortable with you
Does this person open up to you? Do they crack off-color jokes, talk about sensitive subjects, and in general, are open with you? If so, they’re flirting.
If you quickly form a bond with this person and they’re now letting you in, it means they feel at ease with you. They’re not just going to open up to anyone.
Teasing — they are being playful and youthful
Does she dangle a kiss in front of you or compliment you on your butt or shoulders? Does he joke that he loves the gap in your teeth? Or maybe your date is consistently talking about how they could beat your butt in Super Smash Bros.
Being playful is just fun. Being your old playful, youthful self with someone is a sign of comfort and attraction.
Dating Coach and Founder, Coaching Hearts Consulting
They seem to always be reaching out to touch you in a subtle way
Flirting is like a thumbprint — unique to everyone.
Flirting has evolved from dropping a handkerchief in the street to dropping a DM in your socials. Yet, one thing has stayed a constant — flirting is all about making a conscious effort to get someone’s romantic attention.
If you find yourself wondering if someone is flirting with you, here are three no-question-about-it signs:
- Body language. If the person’s body, such as legs, feet, or shoulders, is facing you directly, then subconsciously, that means they are showing interest in you.
- Touch. If they seem to always be reaching out to touch you in a subtle way, like your knee, or brush your shoulder when laughing, then that signals they are romantically interested.
- Smile. If they seem like a kid in a candy store and grinning from ear to ear when talking to you, then you can safely say they are into you!
Flirting is one of many ways to initiate a relationship. It is a natural process that people engage in when they like a person. Most times, this means they are interested in having a deeper connection with a person.
But how do you tell if someone is flirting or if someone is just being overly friendly?
Well, you’ve had to pay close attention to the following signs:
It’s in the eyes — they always make eye contact
One of the most obvious indicators that someone is flirting with you is constant eye contact.
See, it is not easy to maintain eye contact. It is even intimidating sometimes. But eye contact is effortless if a person wants to foster a connection. They might not even be aware that they’re doing it. So, if you notice a person staring into your eyes in a good way, they’re flirting with you.
Close proximity — they show eagerness to always be in your personal space
Another tell-tale sign of flirting is close proximity. If the person shows eagerness to always be in your personal space, that means they want to develop intimacy. That means they want something more than what the two of you already have. And yes, that means they are flirting their way to it.
No joke is not funny
Yet another telling sign that someone is flirting with you is when they laugh at all of your jokes. When this happens, they are showing that they want to please you. They are making an effort not to make you feel bad about yourself, so much that they’ll laugh even at your corniest, cheesiest jokes.
For this reason, you need to observe his reaction closely whenever you tell jokes. If he giggles at a joke that even you yourself find corny, then surely, he is flirting with you.
Of course, there are many other signs a person is flirting with you. All you have to do is observe closely and pay attention to avoid missing them.
They always interact with your posts
When someone is always liking or commenting on your social media posts, and they are often always the first to do so, this is one good sign that someone is interested in you or likes you.
They keep showering you with compliments
When someone gives you a lot of compliments, this shows they pay extra attention to you. And this is one good sign that they are trying to get on your good side and flirt with you.
Senior Editor, Tandem
Though I may have been with my husband for almost 20 years, that doesn’t mean I was born yesterday. Whether you are young or old (like me), you might find yourself in a situation where someone is flirting.
You are tempted to flirt back, but before you do, you want to make sure that what you think is flirting is truly flirting. How can you tell if someone is flirting with you?
They look at you a lot
Are you having a conversation with someone and feeling their eyes on you? Not necessarily creepy, but in a way that you feel they are paying close attention? Having someone who looks at you fully during a conversation could signify flirting.
They play with their hair or clothing
Trying to get your attention might be hard for them, especially if they don’t know what to say. Instead, they might fidget with their hair or their clothing. It’s a subtle way someone can tell you they are interested.
They tease you
Remember being in grade school and teasing the little boys or girls because you felt giddy when you talked to them? Not surprisingly, the same behavior happens in adulthood. We tease those we like, especially when trying to flirt.
They compliment you
Maybe the person compliments the color of your sweater or your hairstyle. It could even be a compliment about something that you thought was trivial. But when someone goes out of their way to compliment someone else, this can signify flirting.
They speak with more than their words
Body language can tell a lot about how a person feels. If someone seems standoffish, they might not be opening up to you. But if they appear casual and inviting, their body might be trying to tell you something.
They tell you
When all else fails, sometimes people will come out and say it. “You know I’m flirting with you,” is something that the courageous might say. Don’t expect everyone to be so upfront. Sometimes you have to work to find out.
Not all flirting is obvious. Similarly, not all flirting is intentional. Some people flirt with others because it’s fun, makes them feel good, or they do it out of habit.
And what if you are married or otherwise already taken? You don’t necessarily have to be offended if someone flirts with you. You can take it as a compliment that someone is interested in you, even if you don’t feel the same way. After all, who said that you are required to flirt back if someone flirts?
Relationship Expert, Sameera Sullivan Matchmakers
They make eye contact for a while
Making eye contact when flirting can be very effective. Eye contact is a positive sign that someone finds you intriguing and possibly beautiful, even though they may not be purposefully trying to court you with long, lingering glances.
While you speak, they touch you
A food bump or “accidental” arm graze could be a sign that you’re being flirted with. If you are sitting at a bar or table, the person will frequently touch your arm or attempt to brush your hands or feet.
They make fun of you or make awkward compliments to you
Backhanded compliments give someone the opportunity to test the waters and see how you will react.
CEO and Founder, Dream Chasers
They compliment you a lot
Not everyone is familiar with the signs that someone is flirting with them. However, there are some signs that you should pay attention to.
One sign is if they are complimenting you a lot. Another sign is if they are looking at you in a way that they aren’t looking at anyone else. If they are doing this, they may be interested in you. These are just two signs, but there are many more.
Here are some other ways to tell if someone is flirting with you:
Pay attention to their body language and what they say
If you feel like they might be flirting with you, then you can start by paying attention to their body language. It is important to remember that body language is not always easy to understand, but if you are paying attention to the right things, then you will be able to tell if someone is flirting with you.
If you are interested in someone and you’re not sure if they are flirting with you, then you should pay attention to their body language and what they say. This will help you figure out if they are flirting with you or if they are just being friendly.
A person is flirting with you if they exhibit the following:
- Their facial expressions and body language. For example, if the person is smiling and looking at you.
- If the person is leaning in and their voice is deeper.
- If the person is touching you.
- They may be trying to make you feel good, but it can also be a little intimidating.
- They might be trying to make you feel like they are not a threat to you.
Flirting is an inherently social act. We flirt to convey our interest in a person and to encourage that person to reciprocate.
But what happens when someone is flirting with you, and you are not sure if they are interested in you or just trying to make conversation? You may be left wondering if the person is flirting with you or not and feeling uncertain about how to proceed.
It is always good to keep your eyes and ears open for signs that someone is flirting with you.
Web Operations Executive, InfoTracer
Finding the right person for you romantically is a challenge. That person is sometimes introduced to you through a relative or a friend, but some other times, you might find yourself in interesting situations where someone might be flirting with you, and you’re oblivious about it.
These are the main signs that someone is interested in you:
They announce they’re single
Whether the first time they meet you or not, when the person always casually brings up that they’re single, it is actually a direct message to let you know that they’re open to being approached.
They give you extra attention
You’ll know a person is flirting if:
- They are always being extra attentive when you speak.
- There is increased eye contact.
- They exhibit unique body language around you.
- They open up conversations with you.
- They are being close to you physically.
- They lightly touch you while you’re talking,
- They laugh at all your jokes.
All these fall under the same umbrella of getting extra attention from someone flirting with you.
They lead you toward different conversations
When the person always twists and leads conversations with you towards romance, hookups, or relationships, they are trying to show you that it is what they truly want from you.
Noticeable social media reactions
Being the first to react and respond to your social media posts usually is a sign that the person is super interested in what you do and is looking for a path to open a conversation with you.
They act differently around you
People who are interested in someone generally tend to act differently: Confident people blush and giggle, dominant people are coy and shy, and talkative people turn silent — these are just a few of the adjustments people whose crush is around them make.
Online texting and messaging increases
Garnering extra attention online through repeated direct texts asking about you and your day or a funny GIF/meme is also a sign of flirting.
Molecular Biotechnology Student | Founder, Fitness Equipped
They use flattering language around you
Flirting can be hard to detect, especially if you’re unsure what to look for. But if you know the signs, you can tell whether someone is interested in you or not.
One sign that someone may be flirting with you is if they make prolonged eye contact. If they keep looking at you and seem to be really enjoying your company, they’re likely attracted to you.
Another sign is if they mirror your body language. If they start to do the same things as you do, like crossing their arms when you cross yours, it could mean that they’re trying to match your vibe.
Another giveaway is if the person starts using flattering language around you. If they start calling you “beautiful” or “gorgeous,” it’s a pretty good indication that they’re into you.
And lastly, if the person starts trying to touch you or get physically close, it’s a clear sign that they want to take things further. So keep an eye out for these indicators, and you’ll be able to tell if someone is flirting with you. And who knows, maybe you’ll even find your next romance!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is flirting, and why do people do it?
Flirting is a way of expressing your interest in someone in a playful and light-hearted way. It’s often used to initiate romantic or sexual relationships.
Still, it can also be used simply to connect with others on a deeper level. People flirt for various reasons, such as to boost their self-confidence, have fun, test the waters with a potential partner, or simply because they enjoy the interaction.
Flirting can involve nonverbal cues, such as eye contact and body language, as well as verbal communication, like compliments and teasing.
Can flirting be a form of cheating in a relationship?
This is a difficult question because different people may have different definitions of cheating in a relationship. Some people perceive flirting with others in a committed relationship as a breach of trust or a form of emotional infidelity, while others may see it as harmless fun.
It’s up to you and your partner to define your relationship’s boundaries and communicate openly and honestly about what is and isn’t acceptable behavior.
It’s important to be aware of your partner’s comfort level, respect their boundaries, and avoid behaviors that could be perceived as secretive or deceptive.
What are the most common mistakes people make when flirting?
A common flirting mistake is being too aggressive or pushy. It’s important to respect the other person’s boundaries and comfort level and avoid making them uncomfortable or pressuring them.
Another mistake is to use inappropriate or offensive language or behavior. Flirting should be playful and fun, not hurtful or disrespectful.
Finally, some people may try to get what they want through manipulation or deception, such as pretending to be interested in someone just to get a date or using insincere pick-up lines.
It’s important to be genuine and authentic in your interactions and to avoid using others for personal gain.
Can flirting be harmful in certain situations?
Flirting can be harmful in certain situations, especially when power imbalances are involved or crosses over into harassment or coercion.
For example, it may be inappropriate to flirt with someone in a position of authority, such as a boss or teacher, so that the other person feels uncomfortable or coerced.
Similarly, suppose someone isn’t interested in your advances or has made it clear that they’re uncomfortable. In that case, it may be considered harassment if you continue to flirt with them.
It’s important to be aware of the power dynamic and to respect the boundaries and comfort of others.
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