There was a time when first dates often meant sweaty palms and plenty of nervousness. Not only did people agonize about where to go and how much to cram into a date, they also wondered about making a first impression with what to wear.
Over time, the concept of dating has changed. Where face-to-face interaction when meeting was the way to plan a first date, a lot of times first dates are planned in front of a computer. There is a chance you have exchanged pictures, but a lot of the planning is done with messages back and forth.
Most dating websites have downplayed the art of dressing up. Instead, dressing down, or casual, has become normal. If your first date happens to be a sporting event, then you won’t want to wear a suit or a dress to the occasion. Meeting for a drink or a meal? Now there is where you want to make the impression.
Here are some ways for both men and women to impress the opposite sex and increase the chances of a love connection:
1. Dress the part
Men, if you are taking a date to a restaurant that isn’t swanky yet is impressive, then you won’t likely need the suit-and-tie route. A nice shirt and a pair of dress pants or khakis will do the trick. More formal first dates for men are when you bring out the Brooks Brothers men’s suits so you can look your best and show your sharp dressing style. For women, a nice blouse and pants will work out for less-formal occasions. Dinner at a very nice restaurant involves breaking out the evening dress, or maybe you go the three-piece suit route if you are in a corporate job. With a little transformation, a daytime suit can easily become a nighttime outfit.
For the men, a nice watch or a small necklace looks good on an outfit. Make sure it goes well with what you are wearing at dinner. An extravagant watch may look out of place on a mid-priced outfit and may draw attention away from you. For women the rules are the same. Don’t overdress with plenty of jewelry. Wear something simple around the neck and ears and maybe one or two rings on your hand.
3. Finish the Look
Not only does this involve proper hygiene, with fingers and exposed skin washed and cleaned thoroughly, it involves what you wear to complete the outfit. Men should wear comfortable socks with shoes. Make sure the socks and shoes aren’t too tight. There’s no use gazing at your first date while you wonder about blisters at the end of the night. Women should wear appropriate heels with their outfit. Don’t wear spike heels with a conservative dress, for example. Make sure the look completes itself. And yes, ladies, it is acceptable again to wear hosiery with an outfit. If you do, match the look of the hose to the outfit and its accessories (purse, etc.). They always say one color makes you look better, if not slimmer.
4. A Little Too Much Fragrance?
Be sensitive to your date’s needs. This means don’t splash on too much cologne or perfume. A little fragrance dabbed on certain areas of the body goes a long way toward impressing the opposite sex. A lot of fragrance can trigger sensitive noses at a table, not to mention other tables might notice.
5. A Fresh Ending
This is not so much a dressing tip but a tip about how to end the night. This falls under accessories. Have a mint or something fresh ready that you can sneak into a purse or pocket. Breath spray works just as well. This will help you in the event the first date ends in a kiss or you feel the need to share a smooch during the night’s activity.