screenshot of text conversation where the writer is asking someone on a date

Quick Q: How Do You Flirt With Someone?

It’s happened. There’s someone cute and you want to talk to them. Perhaps even flirt. But flirting in this economy? It can be a complicated thing. 

While the general rules of flirting have largely stayed the same since humans have started canoodling with each other; that is, be friendly, be chill, don’t be a jerk; a tonne of our communication these days isn’t happening face to face, so being able to read the tone of a meme is just as important as reading someone’s body language. 

So, because we’re romantics and we still believe in love, we’re breaking down some of the best ways to flirt over text, Instagram DM, Facebook messenger and in real life.

How Do You Flirt With Someone?

Successful flirting (on any platform) looks a lot like being generally friendly and nice to people: Ask your crush questions and listen thoughtfully to their answers. Try to remember little details and bring them up again later. Ask to see pictures of their dog and tell them it’s the cutest dog in the world. Say you want to adopt their dog and ask if they want to co-parent… this only works if they have a dog. Now, onto the specifics.

How To Flirt IRL


Flirting in person, the classics are classics for a reason. Whether you’re just meeting someone for the first time or you’ve seen them around and know you have mutual friends, getting to know someone IRL can be super nerve-wracking. 

But it also gives you the chance to flirt without the constant overthinking and holding your breath when your crush has “seen” your message. It’s much harder to leave someone on read when they’re right in front of you.

When flirting in person, use your body! Make eye contact, but not a serial killer amount. Stand or sit with your body facing towards them (people position their bodies towards what’s most important to them in a room… or the exit). If it’s appropes try to stand or sit near them—believe in the power of arms “accidentally” brushing against each other because it’s powerful and the reason YA novels exist. People want to feel special and cute and you literally think this person is special and cute—so show it.

How To Flirt Over Instagram DM

Who among us hasn’t slid into someone’s DMs. If you’ve laid the groundwork already by liking a few of their most recent pictures, a good DM can be incredibly effective flirting. The easiest and most casual way to open a conversation is usually by replying to someone’s IG story. Find something intriguing or unique about it and ask a question that is less generic than “where is this?!” Be interested and be interesting.

If they share a particular type of meme a lot, say, Sustainability Baby Yoda, keep an eye out and send them the best ones. Make sure they’re the right type of meme though. If you’re not sure, DM a friend, and if they’re not sure, it’s not right. 

Instagram might also be the place for more casual flirting. This is the place to ask someone if they’ve listened to the newest Brockhampton, seen that Like A Version or are going to an upcoming festival. And if they’re going to that festival? Tell ‘em you’ll see them at the front left.

How To Flirt Over Facebook Messenger


So you’re Facebook friends, but you want to be more than friends. Flirting with someone over Messenger is not super different to when it’s happening over Instagram, but you do have a few extra options to play with here. 

Where Instagram can usually arm you with a bit of info about what the person’s interests are (for example the artists and meme pages they’re following) Facebook can give you a bit more insight into what someone’s about in their personal life. If they click attending on a concert you’re going to as well or the next climate rally, you can like their response and message them to let them know you are too. 

There’s also the option to set the chat emoji: if there’s one you both use a lot or is an inside joke between you it’s a cute way to remember it. Yes, it’s 2020 and we’re flirting with hieroglyphs… again.

How To Flirt Over Text


You’ve secured the bag. Well, the number but same deal. Flirting over text shares common ground with flirting Instagram DM, but there are a couple of things to note here. 

If all you have is someone’s number, you won’t be able to see when they’re online. If you know you get super anxious about waiting for replies, especially when you can see someone’s status is online and they haven’t looked at your message yet—text might be the way to go. Text flirting can also sometimes move in slower bursts of conversation, so you’ve got some time up your sleeve if you need to put your phone down to think of a good reply.

Monisha Rudhran (@monishamay) is a writer and chronic Pisces. Formerly at Syrup, she's now a Digital Content Producer at ELLE and marie claire Australia. She’s into trying to be a better person and sparkling water.

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