How Do Guys Flirt? Here’s how to know he’s flirting, things he’ll say and ways to tell if you’re not sure.
“It is the difference between men and women, not the sameness, that creates the tension and the delight.” – Edward Abbey
It’s no shocking revelation that men and women flirt differently. If both genders utilized the same tools of seduction, we wouldn’t so often be scratching our heads trying to understand each other.
The way men and women interact with each other when romantically inclined can be wildly puzzling. If this were a simple subject to tackle, there wouldn’t be thousands of books available on this very topic. We’re thirsty for knowledge when it comes to interpreting the behavior of the opposite sex.
Sometimes a man’s efforts to flirt are, thankfully, transparent. Other times you have to immediately phone a friend and try to figure out what his words or actions could possibly mean.
To make that process a little easier, we’ve created a list of 16 signs that a man is flirting with you.
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Signs He’s Flirting With you
1. Body language cues.
Since this particular clue requires no words, it can be one of the more straightforward ones to understand. Observe his body language when he’s around you. Does he make an effort to stand close to you, even leaning in when you speak?
An interested man will often subconsciously angle his feet towards you and mirror your actions. He’ll be unable to look away from your face, maybe even dropping his gaze from your eyes to your lips and back.
2. He singles you out.
If a man walks directly up to you and begins a conversation, don’t second-guess it. Insecurity might make you jump to random assumptions about his intentions, but in reality, he couldn’t be much clearer.
It takes confidence to see a woman you like and approach her with purpose. He wouldn’t go out of his way to leave his comfort zone if he weren’t truly interested.
MORE: How to Flirt With a Guy
3. He tries to figure out your relationship status.
A bold guy might straight-up ask you if you’re single or not. Again, this is not a gesture to be second-guessed. There’s really only one reason he would be requesting this information.
Many guys will try slightly more subtle ways to figure out if you’re available. One route would be asking a mutual friend, which might get back to you. He might also fish around to figure out your weekend plans … and see who you’ll be spending your time with.
4. He’s active on your social media.
Just because a guy adds you on social media doesn’t necessarily mean he’s into you – although it could be pointing in that direction. If he accidentally “likes” one of your posts from seven weeks ago, on the other hand… poor guy got caught creepin’.
Pay attention to how often he seems to keep track of your posts. Does he “like” every selfie? Is he the first person to comment when you make a status? Does he seem to know things about you he only could have found out from your social media pages, like that trip you took to Costa Rica last summer? Being your number one fan on social media is strongly suggestive of affection.
5. He asks you questions.
There’s a certain amount of courteous questioning any person will do while engaging in small talk. We can all tell when that curiosity seems to cross the line of amiable and enter the territory of interested.
He’ll definitely be more interested in asking you questions about yourself than talking about himself. However, when he does answer questions about himself, he’ll probably try to paint himself in the best light possible.
6. He’s nervous around you.
Some people are naturally a little more nervous than others. You’ll already know if the guy you like falls into that category. For the guys who don’t, acting apprehensive can be very telling.
He might fidget frequently or suddenly not know what to do with his hands. Maybe he’ll struggle to look anywhere but his feet or have a slight flush when you say his name. These little indicators show that he’s anxious to impress you.
7. He smiles at you.
Friendly people smile at others, sure, but a flirtatious smile is different. It tends to linger a couple seconds longer than would be otherwise normal. It’s got a hint of mystery that’s missing from the mild smile a stranger would offer when passing on the street.
If he makes the effort to smile at you from across the room, especially repeatedly, this is even more meaningful. He’s testing the waters by offering a smile, so your response will be key in how he decides to proceed.
8. He acts differently around you.
A change in behavior, regardless of what direction it’s in, signifies that you make him feel something. Most likely, that something is nerves. Pay attention to any changes in his demeanor when you enter the room.
If he’s normally soft-spoken, he might abruptly talk and laugh loudly. Or if he’s naturally extroverted, you might notice him become more reserved and quiet. We tend to lose our ability to act “normal” and “cool” around the person we like.
9. He ignores you.
It seems super backward that a man who likes you might ignore you, but it can happen for a couple of reasons. One explanation could be that he gets extremely anxious around you. It’s easier to avoid eye contact and interaction with someone when your nerves get the best of you. Try being extra friendly and see if he relaxes after a few encouraging words.
He might just be shy or afraid of rejection. Or maybe he thinks ignoring you will make you want him more. A little immature, yes, but if he sees that he isn’t getting a reaction out of you he’ll most likely change his strategy.
10. He teases you.
This technique has been a classic since the playground days. At least now we’re less surprised than when our mothers told us that the boy tugging on our hair was doing it because he liked us.
Playfulness is a sign of intimacy, so by teasing you, he’s showing a desire to be closer. It could manifest in jesting banter or in critiquing the way you did something, but should always be lighthearted.
As a side-note, if you notice the teasing becomes more severe, be cautious. A man actually trying to belittle you should be avoided at all costs. He’s likely trying to shake your confidence so that you’ll feel like being with him would be an achievement. Or maybe he has pent-up anger or aggression to deal with. Either way, if the teasing goes from playful to downright mean and demeaning, stay away.
MORE: 10 Signs a Guy Likes You
11. He’s protective of you.
While an overly possessive guy is irritating, a protective one is sweet. Guys naturally feel defensive of a woman they like. He may not be able to show this obviously when you’re not in a relationship, but he’ll probably find little ways to indicate it.
For example, he might be the most eager person to help you when there’s a pushy guy at the bar. When you need someone to walk you to your car in the dark parking lot, he’ll be the first one to raise his hand.
12. He remembers what you say.
A guy who’s only interested in a temporary hook-up might appear to be listening to you but will have terrible recall of the details later. A man who really likes you, meanwhile, will file away everything you say.
This might be illustrated when you have a big meeting and get a “good luck” text from him beforehand. Or maybe the next time he sees you he asks how your cat’s vet appointment went last Tuesday. All of these little things tell you he’s been thinking of you and wants you to know he cares.
13. He buys you a gift.
For guys who struggle with communicating how they feel, sometimes a gift can seem like an appealing option. There are the classics, such as flowers or a fragrance, but those tend to work best when you’re already in a relationship.
If you’re not already dating, he might buy you something random because you mentioned it in passing. For example, maybe you joked that a long-lived cactus would be a better gift than flowers, and the next day you find a cute cactus on your desk at work.
14. He’s interested in everything going on in your life.
Whether it be an activity he’s into or not, an attracted man will consistently be interested in what you do with your time. He’ll be happy to hear about your unusual hobbies or what books you find the most compelling.
You’ve probably experienced the strange feeling of absorption you have with anything that comes out of the mouth of your crush. Suddenly something as basic as “I play lacrosse sometimes” becomes golden information.
15. You catch him staring at you.
Maybe the guy you’re interested in is smooth enough to be sneaky about his glances, but chances are you’ll catch him anyway. Sometimes you can notice it just in your peripheral vision.
When you catch him staring, he’ll likely quickly become obsessed with staring at his feet or nearby wallpaper. On the off chance that he holds your gaze, be aware that he’ll be searching your face for a reaction. If you’re into him, don’t forget to flash him your most coquettish smile.
16. You know it.
Men and women do often flirt differently. Perhaps the way men are most frequently different is in the way they indisputably pursue women. Women tend to rely on discrete signals and subtle cues, either affirming or rejecting advances. While there are certainly exceptions, women are more likely to sit back and wait for a man to make his feelings known than to chase him down.
For this reason, it’s not often that you’ll be kept wondering how a guy feels about you for very long. If he likes you, he’ll let you know. Even quiet guys will turn up the volume on their pursual until you take notice.
I hope this article showed you exactly what it looks like when a man flirts. Flirting is fun, but it doesn’t always lead to a lasting relationship. If you want love that lasts, you need to know what makes a man see you as “the one.” Do you know what makes a man want to commit? Do you know what makes him see you as a woman who is a cut above the rest, a woman he can’t let slip away? If not, read this next: The #1 Things Men Desire in a Woman
Take The Quiz: Does He Like You?
Subtle Flirting Signs:
- Body language cues.
- He singles you out.
- He tries to figure out your relationship status.
- He’s active on your social media.
- He asks you questions.
- He’s nervous around you.
- He smiles at you.
- He acts differently around you.
- He ignores you.
- He teases you.
- He’s protective of you.
- He remembers what you say.
- He buys you a gift.
- He’s interested in everything going on in your life.
- You catch him staring at you.
- You know it.