Compliments will get you everywhere. Or so they say. The fact is, the art of giving compliments is harder than you might think. You can either come across as charming, creepy or a bit of an asshole. Here’s my tips on how to compliment a girl  like a pro. 

The most important rule to giving a compliment is to be honest. It’s as simple as that. Sort of. To truly be good at complimenting a girl, you need to be honest as well as observant and reflective, although those latter two skills can be tricky to train.

Guys who don’t know how to compliment properly say things they think a girl wants to hear. You have nice eyes. You’re the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. Wow I didn’t know you were such an amazing cook! These compliments don’t work, and that’s because they’re insulting.

Yes, a compliment can be insulting. Mostly if they sound fake, insincere and sometimes are literally just insulting. I’ll explain how you can give a compliment that’ real and actually complimentary and this works for everyone, not just girls. A real compliment can make someone’s day.

Being honest

Most people can tell when you’re not being sincere with a compliment. You can probably tell when other people give you an empty compliment. They don’t fill you with joy that a real compliment does. However we all accept them to be polite, accepting fake compliments are just part of social situations.

Giving a fake compliment can help out in a lot of situations. You want to build rapport, better the mood of the surroundings, or any other number of reasons. However giving a real compliment in the same situations will work much better.

If you meet a girl and you think she’s beautiful it’s ok to tell her she’s beautiful. But don’t tell her she has the most beautiful eyes you ever seen, unless you look at her eyes and really think “these are the most beautiful eyes I have ever seen.”

If you think she’s pretty, tell her she’s pretty. If you think she’s really pretty, tell her she’s really pretty. The concept is simple. Only say what you mean.

It can be scary to think about giving compliments like this, because many guys have a set arsenal of compliments ready to go. It helps you not have to think about things. However that’s the key component. A real compliment is one you’ve put thought into, and you convey that to your partner.

Learning to observe

Observation is one of the best skills to have, especially when it comes to women. A lot of men who are awkward around women, or worried or even intimidated would do well to focus more on concentrating on their observation.

When you are nervous, you’re constantly thinking about yourself. Maybe you’re anxious about your behaviour, wondering if you’ll mess up or if she’s noticed that you’re sweating. Instead of focusing on yourself, try and make an effort to focus on the girl.

You can actually practice this with anyone. When you meet someone, whether it’s a friend or a stranger, try and make three nice notes about them. Look at their clothing, maybe they’re wearing really nice socks today, or have a nice jacket on. Check out their hairstyle. Find anything that you think “that’s pretty neat.”

When you meet a girl, do the same thing. Does her hair look nice? Is she wearing a pretty dress? If anything stands out to you, then you can tell her.

“Hey, that necklace is really pretty and it suits you a lot.”

“I like the colour of your top, it matches your skin tone really well.”

“Your hair smells amazing today.”

These are all the sorts of compliments you can give when you start to notice more things about your partner.

Compliment her

You might be thinking “obviously I’m complimenting her!” but you might not realise a lot of people fail to compliment the person when they give out compliments.

In the examples above, I complimented three different things. A necklace, a top and a smell. However in all three compliments, I linked it back to my partner. The necklace is really pretty, and it suits her. You like the colour of the top because it matches well with her. It’s her hair that smells nice.

These compliments are linking back to the person, and therefore complimenting them. If you give a compliment such as “Oh that watch is really nice!” then you’re complimenting the watch and not the person. “That dress is lovely” is complimenting the dress.

Remember when you want to compliment a girl properly, to compliment her. Link the compliment back to her. Observe your partner, find something nice to compliment, link that back to your partner. Simple.

Don’t insult her

Sometimes people give compliments that are actually insults and they don’t even realise it. They’re called backhanded compliment. That is an insult that’s disguised as a compliment.

“I didn’t realise you were such a good cook!” might sound like a compliment, only it’s not really. There’s two things to be found in this statement.

1)  You didn’t think she was a good cook before

2) You like her cooking now

In this instance, you should simply say “this tastes good.” or “I like your cooking!” because both of those compliments give you statement 2, without the insult of statement 1.

Another terrible compliment that’s actually an insult would be something like “I’m not normally into asian girls, but you totally do it for me.” It’s insulting because it sounds like a put-down. Your partner won’t think of herself as special because she’s an exception, she’ll just think you’re an asshole.