Before you decide to dole out compliments to every girl in the vicinity, you have to consider what works and what doesn’t. Not all compliments, though well-meant, are acceptable in today’s society.
There’s so much distrust within the dating community that it’s become difficult for almost everyone to take anything at face value. Some people use compliments for less than noble reasons, while others only use them as conversation fillers.
Instead of complimenting a woman for those reasons, you should express compliments that are sincere and honest. You want to make your target feel good, but you also don’t want her to feel bad about other aspects of herself.
The rulebook: how not to compliment a woman
Many men think that giving compliments to women is trickier than women complimenting men. However, the best way to not offend anyone at all is to just be sensitive and tactful.
Or, better yet, just follow the rules we’ve listed below.
#1 Do not compliment her on her looks, unless you’ve been seeing each other for a while. Everyone likes being appreciated for their looks, but it’s not what women want to be valued for most. It’s perfectly fine to compliment your date on her looks, but only if you’re comfortable with each other. If not, commenting on her appearance just comes off as shallow and makes women suspicious of your intentions.
#2 Do not compliment any of her body parts. Not even her eyes. Again, unless you’ve been together for a while. It’s worse when you focus on specific body parts because these areas usually cannot be changed easily. Body dysmorphia is a prevalent and serious condition, and is always connected to a woman’s anatomical standards for her body. Your commentary might exacerbate the issue. [Read: 24 worst things for a guy to say or do on a date with a girl]
#3 Never allude to her being a woman. This is the sexism card that has been overplayed time and again. In the past, being singled out from the rest of the population made people feel special. Now, saying that a woman is better than her fellow females will only offend her.
#4 Never compliment her on her age. It gives women a sense of impending doom, especially when another wrinkle appears on her forehead. It also denotes that she will have to stay young in order to receive your affection.
#5 Do not express tips to be pretty, disguised as compliments. It’s quite stupid to think that, “You’re so pretty when you wear red” or “You’re so beautiful when you smile” are legitimate compliments. It’s quite obvious that they are manipulative nudges for you to change a woman to fit your needs. [Read: 14 charming ways to impress a girl on a date]
#6 Don’t put too much emphasis on how much you like her personality overall. Complimenting someone’s personality overall is just as bad as complimenting their looks, because you’re disregarding the hundreds of nuances found within a certain “type” of person. This may seem a safer bet than discussing a woman’s looks, but it’s best to wait to venture into these areas until you’re already close and you can provide her with more specific compliments.
#7 Do not tell her that she’s not like other girls. Being unlike other girls is not a compliment. It seems insincere and makes a woman feel pressured to avoid getting caught up in the normal things that are expected of girls. So what if she enjoys rom-coms? So what if she likes sports, too? Being more than or less than another girl is never a compliment.
#8 Do not compliment her body shape. No matter what type of girl you like, complimenting her current state and shape is never a good idea. You do not know what kind of insecurities she’s harboring and you might end up hurting her without realizing it. [Read: 21 things a man should never ever say to a woman]
#9 Do not put an expiration date on your compliment. Never end your compliments with “tonight,” “today,” or any other time markers. You should always compliment a woman based on how she is every day and not just for moments when she looks extraordinary or has achieved something—emotionally or intellectually.
#10 Do not put a value on her earnings. Don’t act impressed when a woman earns a lot more than you, and don’t patronize her by saying she’s earning “enough, anyway.” Money is a sticky subject and should only be discussed if you’re sharing expenses and savings.
What compliments will make her go weak in the knees?
Now that you know what not to say, here’s a list of things that you should say as often as you can. Use any variation, depending on how you talk to each other, and don’t forget to mean it. The compliments that you should express whole-heartedly include:
#1 A job well-done. “You are amazing at what you do and I’m so proud of what you’ve achieved.”
#2 Being caring. “I can’t believe how lucky I am to have someone as caring and loving as you.”
#3 How funny she is. “You always make me smile.”
#4 Support her dream. “I know that this is what you want and I’m sure you can do it. I love how passionate you are.”
#4 Her supporting yours. “You inspire me to be the best person that I can be.”
#5 Her presence in your life. “I’m at my happiest when I’m with you.”
#6 Her courage. “You are very brave and I am proud of how much you strive to take on the odds.”
#7 Her ingenuity. “Thanks for helping me with my problem. I don’t know what I would have done without you.” [Read: 12 essential flirting tips every guy’s got to know]
#8 Her interests. “I think your passion for *insert interest here* is inspiring. I love that you aren’t afraid to show your love for it.”
#9 Her communication skills. “Talking to you is so refreshing. I’m happy that we can communicate like this all the time.”
#10 Her tastes. “That is an excellent choice. I’m glad you picked that.” [Read: 15 types of girlfriends who’ll make your life a living hell]
#11 Spending time with her. “I love how we continue to do things together. It makes me feel closer to you.”
#12 How she makes you feel physically. “I can’t help but get turned on whenever I’m with you.”
#13 How she makes you feel emotionally. “You make me feel loved and wanted.”
#14 How she helps you be a better person. “You are one of the few people who can affect me in such a positive way.”
#15 How she accepts you. “The way you treat me and talk to me makes me feel like I can be honest with you.” [Read: 50 really cute things to say to your girlfriend]
#16 Her sweetness. “You make my heart melt every time you show how much you care.”
#17 Her intensity. “You’re a very powerful woman, even if you don’t see it.”
#18 Her level-headedness. “Thank goodness you’re here to make me see things clearly.”
#19 Her love for you. “You make me feel like the happiest man on earth just by being here and loving me with all your heart.”
[Read: 10 well-meaning compliments for girls that’ll definitely backfire!]
Giving your partner a compliment doesn’t have to be a dangerous game. Using the guidelines provided above, you can give your woman a kind, sincere compliment that’s sure to make her swoon.
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