We all do it, even if just a little. Come on, admit it!

If you don’t consider yourself a flirt, or you don’t know how to flirt, chances are you still fall into one of the five categories below. All you need to do is recognize these styles to know if that person who has caught your eye is flirting with you!

According to a study done at the University of Kansas, there are five main types of flirting: traditional, physical, sincere, playful, and polite. Understanding which flirting style fits you best may help you achieve first date success and even enhance your current relationship. Let’s see what type of flirt you are!

#1 Traditional

In this category, men are much more likely to make the first move, while women are happy to sit back and wait for their knight in shining armor to come galloping along on their white horse. Okay, a girl can dream! A good example of where you can see this style of flirting in action is in online dating. Traditional flirting is increasing in popularity, and women can sit back and literally take their pick. If traditionalists are your style, then it is important to have an appealing profile picture to entice them to make their move! Here’s even more on the secret science of flirting.

#2 Physical

Like to flirt without saying a single word? Or do you like to let your body do all the talking to grab the attention of that special someone you have your eye on? Picture this scenario: When you start laughing, your hand naturally goes to touch the other person’s knee. This is a surefire way to drive that point home that you are super interested, without a word passing your lips! If this is your style, learn more about the physical touch love language here.

#3 Sincere

This is by far the most common type of flirting. Seeing someone from across the room who takes your fancy and wanting to break the ice with them by complimenting their style or what newspaper they may be reading is an easy and subtle flirting style. This manner of flirting is a quick route to finding common ground that may lead to emotional ties, which flourish into a relationship. Even if it doesn’t go past a friendship, then that’s still a bonus. You never can have too many friends!

#4 Playful

This method of flirting could be classified as the most controversial. People who use flirting as a tool, rather than actually engaging in flirting because they are interested in someone, fall into this category. For example, do you flirt to get your own way or to manipulate a situation? Or perhaps flirting is a means to an end for you? Then you are a playful flirt! Some advice: Keep in mind all those hearts you have broken from sending mixed signals. They may come back to haunt you!

#5 Polite

The last style is also the least obvious and is loved by the quietly reserved and the introverted among us. There is a downside to being polite, though, and that is no one may even notice you are flirting! However, the upside of polite flirting is it is often the most genuine. So, what’s not to love?!

Hi, I'm Vanessa!

Hi, I'm Vanessa!

Lead Investigator, Science of People

I'm the author of the national bestselling book Captivate, creator of People School, and human behavioral investigator in our lab.

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