by: David Chastity
So, I’ve kissed a lot of people. And many of them are great, and some of them do things that are kind of terrible. Want to avoid their mistakes? Of course you do, that’s why you’re reading this! Check it:
Unfortunately, the best way to get good at kissing is to kiss a bunch. Humans don’t come equipped with natural good kissing instincts for some reason — or maybe we do and then we overthink it and so we suck until we practice more. This piece of advice is obviously not helpful if you have no one to kiss at the moment, but I promise you if you just get someone and kiss them for an hour or so, you’ll have it all figured out. While you’re working on that, memorize my next four tips.
2. Don’t lead with your teeth.
Teeth aren’t sexy, it’s really quite inconvenient that they’re in our mouth. (I guess people who are more into biting than I am would disagree.) Confession: the very first time I made out with someone, it was all teeth and tongue. This is wrong. If you’re not sure what you’re doing, try keeping your teeth shut and focusing on lips. Once you get the part where smooshing lips together feels nice down, you can graduate to appropriate uses of tongue — and then to appropriate biting.
3. While we’re on the subject of teeth, brush your teeth.
This should be obvious. Mostly I’m mentioning it so I can bring up my favorite-ever euphemism for being in a relationship: “brushing for two.” How cute is that? And it’s poly-friendly, you can just as easily be brushing for three or five! Oral hygiene is good for makeouts, though, friends. Have a mouth that tastes nice. It’ll help.
4. Pay attention to your kissing partner’s signals.
First, you’ll need to be able to read signals to know if your person even wants to kiss you. Sure, you can ask (consent is great!), but some people are weirded out by that (boo, making consent more confusing!) and lots of people use non-verbal signals to indicate it’s smoochin’ time. Look for that increased eye contact and hand contact and moving all close, and take your moment.
And once you’ve taken your moment, keep paying attention to what your partner does. When in doubt, follow their lead. Don’t jam your tongue down their throat unless they’ve already started shoving theirs in your mouth. Don’t assume that just because you’re exploring their mouth, you get to take an expedition further south. Everyone likes kissing different ways, and you won’t know until you’re doing the kissing. So pay attention and you’re likely to do much better.
5. Don’t forget to move around a bit.
Even if you’re not pre-sex making out and thus prepping to start kissing necks, nipples, and bellies, kissing isn’t about just pushing your lips together in the same way over and over. Explore different angles and arrangements. Go off-center sometimes. According to Cosmo (yes, that Cosmo), if you lick lightly along the edge of a dude’s lip, “it subconsciously reminds him of your tongue swirling around the tip of his penis.” So there’s that.
Kissing! It’s not really that hard, and it’s so great. (Seriously, I’m sad that, as a grown-ass adult, I can’t just make out with someone for three hours. Why do teenagers get all the makeout fun?) So, go out and grab yourself a sweetie and/or hottie and lock lips!
Just brush your teeth first. It’s only polite.
David Chastity is some girl who lives in a city on the East Coast and likes kissing. She also really enjoys doing the Onion A.V. Club crossword puzzle, drinking good beer and finding the secret sexual meanings in popular music. She’s working on her MDiv and convincing Jesus to marry her.