There's a certain art to determining what the best compliments to give a girl are. It might seem easy, but say the wrong thing and your well-intentioned compliment could turn your flirtation ice cold.
Let's picture this scenario: you're at a bar, maybe even a nightclub or a wedding, and you see a gorgeous woman by herself. She's got a great smile and the most beautiful, soulful eyes.
You finally get the courage to talk to her. "Pardon me," you say, "but you have the most beautiful eyes…" Her response? She rolls her eyes and you and turns back to her drink. What went wrong?
Read these 10 tips on the best compliments to give a girl.
Do you know who doesn't have nice eyes?
Charles Manson. Rasputin. The Blobfish.
Pretty much everyone else has nice eyes.
So even if she's got some striking Disney princess peepers, the compliment is so universal that it means nothing.
Worse, it makes you look uncreative.
And for a double whammy, many smart women will be suspicious that "falling for a line" makes them look foolish.
The best compliment to give a girl is specific, thoughtful, and unique to her.
Instead of derailing a conversation with it (or worse, interrupting), the best compliment to give a girl comes up naturally in the conversation.
Maybe you go wild when you see her butt in tight jeans, but you'll do best to wait awhile to let her know.
Girls love hearing compliments about their body from a boyfriend or spouse because he has (presumably) already shown to her that he loves her for more than a hot bod.
If you're trying to get to know a woman, a well-meaning comment on her body can easily backfire.
Girls face hundreds of pressures every day to achieve an unrealistic beauty standard (even ads for motorcycles and burgers send girls this message) and it can create a real sense of anxiety.
While it's totally appropriate to tell a date, "you look fantastic," it's best to leave it at that.
A play-by-play of her looks can make you come across as a catcalling creep and nobody wants that.
If you met her online (especially using one of the top cougar dating websites in our annual review) read through her profile again and see what attributes about herself she values.
Complimenting her on an attribute she is proud of can work out great.
This is one of the best compliments to give a girl because it's demonstrating two very important things to her.
First, it's showing that you are actually listening to what she is saying.
You're staying present in the conversation and not letting your mind drift off to wondering how your sports team is doing or fantasizing about how the end of the night might go.
Secondly, you're telling her that you have respect for her ideas and opinions.
That's hugely sexy.
If you're finding yourself cracking up at her wit, let her know!
While a lot of women say that a sense of humor is one of the most important traits for a partner, men are far less likely to say the same.
A lot of girls aren't encouraged to be funny growing up and a lot of insecure men get intimidated by the prospect of having a funnier partner.
If you are loving the way she makes your laugh, speak up and you'll have even more chances to laugh together.
Similar to talking about her passions, one of the best ways to compliment a girl is to relate back what she's saying to you.
This is a really intimate compliment because what you're really doing is connecting an emotional or intellectual value with what she's saying.
For example, if you tell her, "the way you talk about that movie reminds me of the way my favorite teacher would talk about film," you're telling her that you're valuing her intellect and it's resonating with you in an emotional way.
If that feels unnatural for you, try saying, "this made me think of you."
You're telling her that her interests in ideas are important to you.
Did she get a new haircut?
Is she wearing shoes or a dress you've never seen?
It's definitely okay to compliment her on it.
Women like to see that a guy is paying attention and complimenting her on the way she presents herself is very different from complimenting her on her body.
A word of caution: unless it's very noticeable, you might want to avoid mentioning a change in a woman's hair color.
Some women, especially women in their 30s and beyond, dye their hair to cover up a fading or greying natural color and won't appreciate you calling attention to it.
But if she's traded in her brunette for platinum blonde, you have to mention it or you'll give the impression that you're following the classic rule, "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all."
This isn't appropriate for a girl that you've just met or have just started seeing.
This compliment is best for a woman that you've seen several times and shared some physical affection (although not necessarily sex).
Telling a girl that you love how she "fits" is a sweet and intimate compliment to give her while you hold hands, cuddle or spoon.
This is a low-pressure way of communicating that you enjoy your time together and you want to keep seeing her.
Does she know the best places in town to get a good steak?
The perfect pairing of wine or cocktails?
Maybe she can rattle off the best Netflix documentaries on a subject you're interested in or help pick out the perfect gift for your boss's wedding.
If she has impeccable taste in something, let her know.
It shows that not only to you admire her good taste, but you respect her opinion and knowledge.
While "you have a great smile" is one of those generic compliments that needs to be retired, telling her that she has a great laugh is one of the best compliments to give to a girl.
A genuine laugh means that she's letting her guard down and really expressing herself to you.
It's also worth noting that laughter releases endorphins and oxytocin, the "happiness" chemicals in our brains that encourage us to bond together.
Isn't that ultimately what we want out of a partner?
Someone who inspires us to be the best possible version of ourselves? It's a wonderful compliment to tell someone what you find inspiring and admirable about them.
Maybe she is active in a charity program making the world a better place.
Or she has just gotten an impressive promotion at work.
It can be something as simple as sticking to a goal to cook a healthy dinner at home a few times a week or bike to work.
This is a fantastic way to show her that, far from being insecure or intimidated by them, you respect and commend her for her success and determination.
Women are experts at detecting contrived, fake compliments.
Your compliment should come from the heart and reflect how you actually feel about her.
If giving a compliment feels unnatural to you, start small. Be sure to deliver it with a smile and warmth.
Who knows, she might even return the compliment. Get ready to blush!