Flirting is a form of human interaction, usually defined as expressing a sexual or romantic interest in another person. This paper will use the term “evolutionary function” to mean a particular phenomenon perceptual and cognitive processes. also East Frisian flirt "a flick or light blow," flirtje "a giddy girl," which also might have fed into the English word), but perhaps rather from or influenced by flit (v.). But flirting is also an essential element of the mate-selection process, and .. in the 'Non-verbal flirting' section, but 'verbal' means 'words' and vocal signals.
They argue that the large human brain — our superior intelligence, complex language, everything that distinguishes us from animals — is the equivalent of the peacock's tail: Our achievements in everything from art to rocket science may be merely a side-effect of the essential ability to charm.
If flirting is instinctive, why do we need this Guide? Like every other human activity, flirting is governed by a complex set of unwritten laws of etiquette. These rules dictate where, when, with whom and in what manner we flirt. We generally obey these unofficial laws instinctively, without being conscious of doing so. We only become aware of the rules when someone commits a breach of this etiquette — by flirting with the wrong person, perhaps, or at an inappropriate time or place.
Chatting up a widow at her husband's funeral, for example, would at the very least incur disapproval, if not serious distress or anger. This is a very obvious example, but the more complex and subtle aspects of flirting etiquette can be confusing — and most of us have made a few embarrassing mistakes. Research shows that men find it particularly difficult to interpret the more subtle cues in women's body-language, and tend to mistake friendliness for sexual interest.
Another problem is that in some rather Puritanical cultures, such as Britain and North America, flirting has acquired a bad name. Some of us have become so worried about causing offence or sending the wrong signals that we are in danger of losing our natural talent for playful, harmless flirtation. So, to save the human race from extinction, and preserve the foundations of civilisation, Martini commissioned Kate Fox at the Social Issues Research Centre to review and analyse all the scientific research material on interaction between the sexes, and produce a definitive guide to the art and etiquette of enjoyable flirting.
Psychologists and social scientists have spent many years studying every detail of social intercourse between men and women. Until now, their fascinating findings have been buried in obscure academic journals and heavy tomes full of jargon and footnotes.
This Guide is the first to reveal this important information to a popular audience, providing expert advice on where to flirt, who to flirt with and how to do it. At some such events e. This is because most parties, celebrations, carnivals and festivals are governed by a special code of behaviour which anthropologists call 'cultural remission' — a temporary, structured relaxation of normal social controls and restrictions.
This might just sound like a fancy way of saying 'letting your hair down', but it isn't. There are rules of behaviour at even the wildest carnival — although they may involve a complete reversal of normal, everyday social etiquette.
Flirtatious behaviour which is normally frowned upon may be actively required, and prissy refusal to participate may incur disapproval. Drinking-places Flirting is also socially acceptable in some public settings, usually where alcohol is served — such as bars, pubs, night-clubs, discos, wine bars, restaurants, etc. Flirting in drinking-places is, however, subject to more conditions and restrictions than at parties. In pubs, for example, the area around the bar counter is universally understood to be the 'public zone', where initiating conversation with a stranger is acceptable, whereas sitting at a table usually indicates a greater desire for privacy.
Tables furthest from the bar counter are the most 'private' zones. As a rule-of-thumb, the more food-oriented establishments or 'zones' tend to discourage flirting between strangers, while those dedicated to drinking or dancing offer more socially sanctioned flirting opportunities.
Restaurants and food-oriented or 'private' zones within drinking-places are more conducive to flirting between established partners.
SIRC Guide to flirting
Learning-places Schools, colleges, universities and other educational establishments are hot-beds of flirting. This is largely because they are full of young single people making their first attempts at mate selection. Learning-places are also particularly conducive to flirting because the shared lifestyle and concerns of students, and the informal atmosphere, make it easy for them to initiate conversation with each other.
Simply by being students, flirting partners automatically have a great deal in common, and do not need to struggle to find topics of mutual interest. Flirting is officially somewhat more restricted in learning-places than in drinking-places, as education is supposed to take priority over purely social concerns, but in many cases the difference is not very noticeable. Taking a course or evening class may in fact provide more opportunities for relaxed, enjoyable flirting than frequenting bars and night-clubs.
Workplace At work, flirting is usually acceptable only in certain areas, with certain people and at specific times or occasions. There are no universal laws: In some companies, the coffee machine or cafeteria may be the unofficial 'designated flirting zones', other companies may frown on any flirting during office hours, or between managers and staff, while some may have a long-standing tradition of jokingly flirtatious morning greetings.
Careful observation of colleagues is the best way to discover the unspoken flirting etiquette of your own workplace — but make sure that you are guided by the behaviour of the most highly regarded individuals in the company, not the office 'clown', 'groper' or 'bimbo'. The level of flirtatious behaviour, however, often tends to be inversely related to the standards achieved by participants and their enthusiasm for the activity.
You will generally find a lot of flirting among incompetent tennis players, unfit swimmers, cack-handed potters, etc. There are of course exceptions to this rule, but before joining a team or club, it is worth trying to find out if the members have burning ambitions to play in the national championships or win prestigious awards for their handiwork.
If you are mainly looking for flirting opportunities, avoid these high-flying groups, and seek out clubs full of happy, sociable under-achievers. Spectator events Although they have the advantage of providing conversation topics of mutual interest, most sporting events and other spectator pastimes such as theatre or cinema are not particularly conducive to flirting, as social interaction is not the primary purpose of the occasion, and social contact may limited to a short interval or require 'missing the action'.
The most striking exception to this rule is horseracing, where all the 'action' takes place in just a few minutes, the half-hour interval between races is dedicated to sociability, and friendly interaction between strangers is actively encouraged by racecourse etiquette.
In fact, our own recent research on the behaviour of racegoers indicates that the 'social micro-climate' of the racecourse makes it one of the best flirting environments in Britain. Who to flirt with 'Flirting for fun' At one level, you can flirt with more or less anyone. An exchange of admiring glances or a bit of light-hearted flirtatious banter can brighten the day, raise self-esteem and strengthen social bonds.
Flirtation at this level is harmless fun, and only the stuffiest killjoys could possibly have any objections. Clearly, it makes sense to exercise a degree of caution with people who are married or attached.
Most people in long-term relationships can cope with a bit of admiration, and may even benefit from knowing that others find them or their partners attractive, but couples differ in their tolerance of flirtatious behaviour, and it is important to be alert to signs of discomfort or distress. Research has also shown that men have a tendency to mistake friendly behaviour for sexual flirting. This is not because they are stupid or deluded, but because they tend to see the world in more sexual terms than women.
There is also evidence to suggest that women are naturally more socially skilled than men, better at interpreting people's behaviour and responding appropriately. Indeed, scientists have recently claimed that women have a special 'diplomacy gene' which men lack. Otherwise, light-hearted flirtation is both harmless and enjoyable. In mate-selection flirting, there are two basic rules about who to flirt with that will increase your chances of success and reduce the likelihood of embarrassing rejections.
Do initiate flirtation with people of roughly the same level of attractiveness as yourself?
This will give you the best chance of compatability. Most successful marriages and long-term relationships are between partners of more or less equal good looks. There is some leeway, of course, and other qualities are also important, but statistically, relationships where one partner is much more attractive than the other tend to be less successful.
Studies have shown that the more evenly matched partners are in their attractiveness, the more likely they are to stay together. But evaluating your own attractiveness may be difficult. Research has shown that many women have a poor body-image, and often underestimate their attractiveness. If you are female, the odds are that you are more attractive than you think, so try flirting with some better-looking men. Men generally tend to be less critical of their own physical appearance than women.
This is partly because standards of beauty for males are much less rigid than for females, and a wider variety of shapes and features are considered attractive. But it must be said that some men are also inclined to overestimate their attractiveness. If you are a more honest male, and do not consider yourself good-looking, remember that most men lack expertise in the subtleties of social interaction, so polishing up your flirting skills could give you the edge over a more attractive rival.
Don't flirt with people who are unlikely to return your interest. Even if you are not looking for a long-term mate, you will enjoy flirting more with someone who is interested in you. So it makes sense to approach people who are likely to see you as at least a possible partner, rather than those likely to dismiss you as unsuitable. Evolution has favoured males who select young, attractive mates and females who select partners with power, wealth and status.
Men therefore naturally tend to seek women who are younger than them and place greater emphasis on physical beauty, while women are more likely to favour older males with higher status and earning potential. Women also tend to prefer men who are taller than them.
Analysis of thousands of personal ads — where people are more explicit about their requirements, and more obviously conscious of the requirements of others — shows that these are the qualities most frequently demanded and offered by mate-seekers. Short, low-status males and older, less attractive females may therefore be a bit more restricted in their choice of potential partners, although there are many exceptions to this rule, and confidence and charm can outweigh apparent disadvantages.
In the How to Flirt section, you will find tips on how to tell immediately, even from across a crowded room, whether someone is likely to return your interest or not. How to flirt The first key to successful flirting is not an ability to show off and impress, but the knack of conveying that you like someone. If your 'target' knows that you find him or her interesting and attractive, he or she will be more inclined to like you. Although this simple fact has been demonstrated in countless studies and experiments, you don't really need scientists to prove it.
You already know that when you are told someone fancies you, or hear that someone has praised or admired you, your interest in that person automatically increases — even if it is someone you have never met! Conveying that you like someone, and judging whether or not the attraction is mutual, clearly involves a combination of verbal and non-verbal communication skills. When asked about flirting, most people — particularly men — focus on the verbal element: In fact, the non-verbal element — body-language, tone of voice, etc.
Also, their non-verbal signals will tell you much more about their feelings towards you than the words they use. We show attitudes such as liking and disliking not by what we say but by the way we say it and the posture, gestures and expressions that accompany our speech. The customary polite greeting "pleased to meet you", for example, can convey anything from 'I find you really attractive' to 'I am not the slightest bit interested in you', depending on the tone of voice, facial expression, position and posture of the speaker.
Non-verbal flirting When a man and a woman meet for the first time, both are in a difficult, ambiguous and potentially risky situation. Neither person knows what the other's intentions and feelings are. Because stating intentions and feelings verbally involves a high risk of embarrassment or possible rejection, non-verbal behaviour becomes the main channel of communication.
Unlike the spoken word, body language can signal invitation, acceptance or refusal without being too obvious, without causing offence or making binding commitments. Women should be particularly careful when using signals of interest and attraction.
Men already tend to mistake friendliness for flirting; if your signals of interest are too direct and obvious, they will mistake them for sexual availability. Eye contact Your eyes are probably your most important flirting tool. We tend to think of our eyes mainly as a means of receiving information, but they are also extremely high-powered transmitters of vital social signals. How you look at another person, meet his or her gaze and look away can make all the difference between a successful, enjoyable flirtation and an embarrassing or hurtful encounter.
Eye contact — looking directly into the eyes of another person — is such a powerful, emotionally loaded act of communication that we normally restrict it to very brief glances. Prolonged eye contact between two people indicates intense emotion, and is either an act of love or an act of hostility. It is so disturbing that in normal social encounters, we avoid eye contacts of more than one second.
Among a crowd of strangers in a public setting, eye contacts will generally last only a fraction of second, and most people will avoid making any eye contact at all. This is very good news for anyone wishing to initiate a flirtation with an attractive stranger. Even from across a crowded room at a party, you can signal your interest in someone merely by making eye contact and attempting to hold your target's gaze for more than one second not too much more, though, or you will seem threatening.
If these eye contacts trigger a smile, you can approach your target with some confidence. If, on the other hand, your target avoids making eye contact with you, or looks away after a fraction of a second and does not look back again, you should probably assume that your interest is not returned. There is still the possibility that your target is just a very shy person — and some females may be understandably wary of signalling any interest in male strangers.
The only way to find out is by close observation of your target's behaviour towards others. Does she consistently avoid direct eye-contact with men? Does he seem nervous, anxious or aloof in his interactions with other women?
If so, your target's reluctance to meet your gaze may be nothing personal, and it might be worth approaching, but only with considerable caution. Once you have approached your target, you will need to make eye contact again in order to strike up a conversation. As soon as your eyes meet, you may begin to speak. Once a conversation begins, it is normal for eye contact to be broken as the speaker looks away.
In conversations, the person who is speaking looks away more than the person who is listening, and turn-taking is governed by a characteristic pattern of looking, eye contact and looking away. So, to signal that you have finished speaking and invite a response, you then look back at your target again.
The person speaking will normally look at you for less than half this time, and direct eye contact will be intermittent, rarely lasting more than one second. When your target has finished speaking, and expects a response, he or she will look at you and make brief eye contact again to indicate that it is your turn. The basic rules for pleasant conversation are: The key words here are 'glance' and 'brief': The most common mistake people make when flirting is to overdo the eye contact in a premature attempt to increase intimacy.
This only makes the other person feel uncomfortable, and may send misleading signals. Some men also blow their chances by carrying on a conversation with a woman's breasts, rather than looking at her face. Interpersonal distance The distance you keep from the other person when flirting is important, because it will affect his or her impression of you, and the quality of your interaction.
When you first approach an attractive stranger, having established at least an indication of mutual interest through eye contact, try to make eye contact again at about 4ft away, before moving any closer. At 4 ft about two small steps awayyou are on the borderline between what are known as the 'social zone' 4 to 12 ft and the 'personal zone' 18in to 4ft. If you receive a positive response at 4ft, move in to 'arm's length' about 2ft 6in.
The 'intimate zone' less than 18in is reserved for lovers, family and very close friends.
If you are close enough to whisper and be heard, you are probably too close for comfort. These distance rules apply particularly in face-to-face encounters. We will tolerate reduced interpersonal distances when we are side by side with someone. This is because when you are alongside someone, it is easier to use other aspects of body language, such as turning away or avoiding eye contact, to 'limit' your level of involvement with the other person. You can therefore approach a bit closer than 'arm's length' if you are alongside your target — at the bar counter of a pub, for example — rather than face-to-face.
But be careful to avoid 'intrusive' body-language such as prolonged eye contact or touching. You may also see 'barrier signals' such as folded or tightly crossed legs, or rubbing the neck with the elbow pointed towards you.
If you see any of these signs, back off!
Finally, remember that different people have different reactions to distance. If your target is from a Mediterranean or Latin American country known as the 'contact cultures'he or she may be comfortable with closer distances than a British or Northern European person.
North Americans fall somewhere between these two extremes. Different personality-types may also react differently to your approach: Even the same person may vary in tolerance from day to day, according to mood: Posture Most of us are quite good at controlling our faces — maintaining an expression of polite interest, for example, when we are really bored to tears, or even nodding when we really disagree! But we tend to be less conscious of what the rest of our body is doing.
We may be smiling and nodding, but unconsciously revealing our disagreement by a tense posture with tightly folded arms. This is known as 'non-verbal leakage': When flirting, you should therefore watch out for signs of this 'non-verbal leakage' in your partner's posture — and try to send the right signals with your own posture. Your partner's 'non-verbal leakage' can give you advance warning that your chat-up isn't working. Leaning backwards and supporting the head on one hand are signs of boredom.
These are signs of attentiveness and interest or liking. Experiments have also shown that females are more likely to tilt their heads to one side when they are interested in the person they are talking to. Men should beware, however, of automatically assuming that these signs indicate sexual interest.
Women should be aware of men's tendency to make such assumptions, and avoid signalling interest too obviously. Another positive sign is what psychologists call 'postural congruence' or 'postural echo': Mirror-image postural echoes — where one person's left side 'matches' the other person's right side — are the strongest indication of harmony and rapport between the pair.
When flirting, you can also use postural echo to create a feeling of togetherness and harmony. Experiments have shown that although people are not consciously aware of someone deliberately 'echoing' their postures, they will evaluate a person who does this more favourably. This technique obviously has its limits. We would not suggest, for example, that a woman in a mini-skirt should 'echo' the open-legged sitting posture of her male companion. But if he is leaning forward with his left forearm resting on the table, she could create a sense of common identity by 'mirroring' this aspect of his posture — leaning forward with her right forearm on the table.
In addition to these 'generic' signals of interest, there are specifically male and female posture signals which are often seen in flirtatious encounters. These tend to be postures which enhance the masculine or dominant appearance of the male, and the femininity of the female. Males may adopt postures which make them appear taller, larger and more impressive, such as placing hands in pockets with elbows out to enlarge the chest, or leaning one hand at above shoulder height on a wall to appear taller and more imposing.
Females either adopt postures which make them look smaller, such as drawing the knees towards the body when seated, or postures which draw attention to physical attributes attractive to males, such as arching the back to display the breasts, or crossing and re-crossing the legs to draw attention to them. Gestures As well as overall body posture, the gestures we use can signal interest, attraction and invitation — or discomfort, dislike and rejection.
When flirting, it is important to be aware of these non-verbal cues, both in 'reading' your partner's body-language and in controlling the messages you are sending with your own gestures. In conversation, gestures are mainly used to enliven, clarify and 'punctuate' our speech, or to show responsiveness to what the other person is saying. In a flirtatious encounter, the amount of gesticulation, the directions of the gestures and the co-ordination of gestures can indicate the degree of interest and involvement your partner feels towards you.
Different cultures vary widely in the amount of gesticulation that accompanies their speech Italians say that you can silence an Italian by tying his hands behind his backand even within a single culture, some people naturally express themselves more through gestures than others.
Generally, however, someone who is interested in you will be more lively and animated in conversation, using more gestures when speaking in order to keep your attention, and more responsive gestures to show interest when you are speaking. When your partner is speaking, you can show responsiveness by nodding in agreement, throwing up your hands in surprise, bringing them together in a 'silent clap' of appreciation, etc. Researchers have found that nodding can be used to 'regulate' conversations.
If you make single, brief nods while your partner is speaking, these act as simple signs of attentiveness, which will maintain the flow of communication from the speaker. Double nods will change the rate at which the other person speaks, usually speeding up the flow, while triple nods or single, slow nods often interrupt the flow altogether, confusing speakers so much that they stop in their tracks.
So, if you want to express interest and keep your partner chatting with you, stick to brief single nods. You can also watch for gestures which indicate anxiety and nervousness, such as hand-clasping movements and palm-rubbing. As a general rule, anxious gestures are directed towards the anxious person's own body known as 'proximal' movementswhile 'distal' movements, directed away from the body, are a sign of confidence.
As well as watching for these signals in your partner, you can control the impression you are making by using more confident, 'distal' gestures. As with posture, the greatest involvement and harmony is achieved when gestures are synchronised — when the movements of one person are echoed or reflected by the other.
You may have noticed that this tends to happen naturally between people who like each other and get on well together. Watch pairs of lovers in a bar or pub, and you will see that they often tend to lift their drinks and take a sip at the same time, and that many of their other body movements and gestures will be similarly synchronised. Psychologists call this 'interactional synchrony' or 'gestural dance', and some of their research findings indicate that the timing of matched gestures may be accurate down to fractions of a second.
Although this synchronisation normally happens without conscious effort, you can use it as a highly effective flirting technique. Men should not assume that it necessarily indicates sexual interest, however. Women can avoid creating this impression by reducing synchronisation, adopting a more 'closed' posture and avoiding the use of gestures which are specifically associated with flirtatious behaviour. In experiments, female hair-flipping and head-tossing were among the non-contact gestures most often regarded as sexually flirtatious, along with repeated leg-crossing and movements designed to draw attention to the breasts.
Facial expression An ability to 'read' and interpret the facial expressions of your partner will improve your chances of successful flirting, as will awareness of what you are signalling with your own expressions. Some expressions can be effective even from a distance, as in the 'across a crowded room' encounter with a stranger.
The 'eyebrow-flash', for example, which involves raising the eyebrows very briefly — for about one-sixth of a second — is used almost universally as a long-distance greeting signal. When you see someone you know, but are not near enough to speak, the eyebrow-flash shows that you have noticed and recognised them. We all use this non-verbal "Hello! Watch a video of Andrew and Fergie's wedding, for example, and you will see that Fergie performs frequent eyebrow-flashes as she walks down the aisle.
Social etiquette does not allow a bride to call out cheery greetings to her friends and relations during the ceremony, but the highly sociable Fergie is clearly unable to refrain from signalling the same greetings with her eyebrows. If you are desperate to attract the attention of an attractive stranger across a crowded party, you could try an eyebrow-flash. This should make your target think that you must be a friend or acquaintance, even though he or she does not recognise you.
When you approach, your target may thus already be wondering who you are. You can, if you are skilful, use this confusion to initiate a lively discussion about where you might have met before. Such conversations inevitably centre on possible shared interests or friends or habits, and invariably involve mutual disclosure of at least some personal information.
As you will learn from the 'Verbal flirting' sections of this Guide, these are essential ingredients of successful flirting.
So, assuming your target finds you attractive, an eyebrow-flash with appropriate follow-up could leapfrog you into instant intimacy. Two warnings are necessary here: If your target is attracted to you, this may be more evident in facial expressions than in words.
Studies have found that women are generally better than men at reading these expressions, but that both sexes have equal difficulty in seeing through people's expressions when they are controlling their faces to hide their real feelings. The problem is that although faces do express genuine feelings, any facial expression that occurs naturally can also be produced artificially for a social purpose.
Smiles and frowns, to take the most obvious examples, can be spontaneous expressions of happiness or anger, but they can also be manufactured as deliberate signals, such as frowning to indicate doubt or displeasure, smiling to signal approval or agreement, etc.
Feelings can also be hidden under a 'social' smile, a 'stiff upper lip' or a blank, 'inscrutable' expression. Despite this potential for 'deceit', we rely more on facial expressions than on any other aspect of body language. In conversation, we watch our companions' faces rather than their hands or feet, and rely on their facial signals to tell us what effect we are having, and how to interpret what they say.
Flirting - Wikipedia
Although people are better at controlling their facial expressions than other aspects of body language, there is still some 'leakage', and the following clues will help you to detect insincerity. Let's say your target smiles at you. How do you know whether this smile is spontaneous or manufactured? There are four ways of telling the difference. First, spontaneous smiles produce characteristic wrinkles around the eyes, which will not appear if your target is 'forcing' a smile out of politeness.
Second, 'forced' or 'social' smiles tend to be asymmetrical stronger on the left side of the face in right-handed people and on the right side of the face in left-handed people. The third clue to insincerity is in the timing of the smile: Finally, there is a clue in the duration of the smile, as a manufactured smile tends to be held for longer what is often called a 'fixed' smile and then to fade in an irregular way.
When observing your target's facial expressions, it is important to remember that although an expressive face — showing amusement, surprise, agreement etc.
Women naturally tend to smile more than men, for example, and to show emotions more clearly in their facial expressions. You are also likely to interpret expressions differently depending on who is making them. Experiments have shown that people may read the same expression as 'fear' when they see it on a female face, but as 'anger' when it appears on male face. There are also cultural and even regional differences in the amount of emotion people express with their faces.
Oriental people are more likely than Westerners to hide their emotions under a 'blank' expression or a smile, for example, and American researchers have found that in the US, Notherners smile less than people from the South. If an attractive stranger smiles at you, it could be that he or she finds you attractive, but he or she could also be an outgoing, sociable person from a culture or region in which smiling is commonplace and not particularly meaningful.
These factors must also be taken into account when considering the effect of your own facial expressions. People tend to be put off by levels of expressiveness that are considerably higher or lower than what they are used to, so it could help to try to 'match' the amount of emotion you express with your face to that of your target.
As a general rule, however, your face should be constantly informative during a flirtatious conversation. She wrote of the Americans, "The boy learns to make advances and rely upon the girl to repulse them whenever they are inappropriate to the state of feeling between the pair", as contrasted to the British, where "the girl is reared to depend upon a slight barrier of chilliness He wrote that courtship in both cultures used approximately 30 steps from "first eye contact to the ultimate consummation", but that the sequence of the steps was different.
For example, kissing might be an early step in the American pattern but a relatively intimate act in the English pattern. European hand fans[ edit ] Further information: European hand fans in the 18th century The fan was extensively used as a means of communication and therefore a way of flirting from the 16th century onwards in some European societies, especially England and Spain.
A whole sign language was developed with the use of the fan, and even etiquette books and magazines were published. The use of the fan was not limited to women, as men also carried fans and learned how to convey messages with them. For instance, placing the fan near the heart meant "I love you", while opening a fan wide meant "Wait for me".
This use was highly popular during the 19th and early 20th centuries. Flirting can indicate an interest in a deeper personal relationship with another person. Some people flirt simply for amusement, with no intention of developing any further relationship.Deaf People Teach Us How To Flirt - Deaf People Tell - Cut
For others, flirting serves a purpose and is employed as a tool to achieve a specific professional goal good salespeople will recognise situations where flirting will help a sale. According to social anthropologist Kate Foxthere are two main types of flirting: This type of flirting does not intend to lead to sexual intercourse or a romantic relationship, but increases the bonds between two people.
Flirting with intent plays a role in the mate-selection process. The person flirting will send out signals of sexual availability to another, and expects to see the interest returned in order to continue flirting. Flirting can involve non-verbal signs, such as an exchange of glances, hand-touching, and hair-touching; or verbal signs, such as chatting, giving flattering comments, and exchanging telephone numbers in order to initiate further contact. In the 21st century flirting is increasingly taking place in instant messaging and other social media.
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