It’s hard enough to decide what to wear from day to day – picking the right outfit for your first date is just a nightmare! Should you go smart or casual? Sexy or sassy? Colourful or neutral? Here we’ll walk you through the dos and don’ts of first date outfits and how to make the right impression to give you the best chance of winning his heart for date number two!
1. Be comfortable
First dates are nerve racking enough, without having to be conscious about what you’re wearing. Although of course you want to make a great first impression, don’t wear clothes …
- that you constantly need to adjust.
- that make you feel that you constantly need to hold in your belly.
- that can reveal a bit too much if they slip one way or another (so you’re always worrying/checking).
- that are uncomfortable.
- that are too small for you. People look more confident and more put together in clothes that fit them.
Don’t wear shoes that are uncomfortable or difficult to walk in either. You won’t feel relaxed and natural and you’ll look pretty daft if you fall flat on your face. Walking like a duck isn’t attractive, either.
2. Don’t go for a fiddly look
While those false lashes might make your eyes look sexy as hell, it’s not pretty if they come away half way through the date. Likewise, that pristine applied lipstick only looks fab if it stays pristine and an hour into your date, that’s less likely to be the case (especially if there’s been any smooching!) Go for make-up that will last all night without touch-ups and where there’s no risk of it sliding off your face – or onto your man. Keep in mind that it might rain or you might end up somewhere hot, and try to factor this in so that you don’t end up looking like Alice Cooper if it happens.
3. Dress to complement your partner
We’re not talking matching clothes here – rather, if your man’s a casual dresser, don’t show up in your favourite LBD with bling earrings and a glitzy handbag. You’ll not only make him feel uncomfortable (or underdressed) but you’ll look like an odd couple. You don’t have to match the jeans/T-shirt but tone it down a little. Likewise, if your man likes to smarten it up, try and wear something more on the smart classy side. If you’re meeting for dinner and have no idea what he’ll show up in, go smart casual, steering clear of jeans and trainers – it’s the safest bet and it’ll take you almost anywhere.
His height is another consideration to factor in – although your 6 inch stilettos might make you look like a supermodel goddess, some men get a little scared by ladies that are taller than them so save these for a later date and stick to something that doesn’t give you the Tom Cruise + ‘any of his partners’ look.
4. Dress for the occasion
A lot of first dates involve going out for a meal and these are pretty easy to dress for, but what if your dream man’s invited you out for a walk in the country or picnic? The number one rule here is to dress for the occasion. Men are pretty practical in nature and the sound of a women moaning about her aching feet or the sight of one staggering through a cow field in stilettos, is a big turn off. Similarly, your prettiest sundress might seem perfect for a countryside picnic, but what if you end up sitting on the grass or it’s a little windy and you can’t stop it blowing up? Be ready for whatever the occasion might throw at you – including the weather!
5. Don’t put it all on show
It’s a first date and you want to look sexy, so picking an outfit that shows off the best of your figure is a must – but don’t be tempted to show up with your cleavage busting out of your top or your dress so short that your man starts to wonder if you forgot your skirt. There’s a good chance you’ll make your man feel uncomfortable and it may confuse him a little as to what point you’re trying to make.
Speaker and award winning author Carole Brody Fleet suggests that you ask yourself, “What kind of message do I want to send?”
Remember, he thinks you’re gorgeous and you’ve already bagged a date, so choose something sexy with class that doesn’t leave him staring frantically over your shoulder to try and avoid making the faux pas of accidentally glancing at your bulging chest.
6. Be colourful
Picking the right colour for your outfit is extremely important if you want to make a great first impression. Try to stay away from dark colours as this look can come across as too official and make you look like you’ve just stepped out of the office. This kind of look can make a guy really nervous like he’s just walked into an interview!
So include some colour in your outfit, but not too outrageous and bright and don’t forget to try and choose something that complements and fits well with your complexion. Here’s a fantastic chart to help you choose:
7. Keep your personal style
Although you’ll be doing your best to pick clothes that tick all the first date boxes and make you and your man feel at ease, do keep elements of your personal style and put together an outfit that reflects your personality. Associate Editor for StyleCaster Meghan Blalock advises, “Personal style is branding: what you wear does determine the type of person that you’re going to attract. If you naturally have sort of a hipster-y Williamsburg style, and you wear Lily Pulitzer on a date, it’s not going to attract the kind of person you want”. There’s no point attracting a man who wants to be with somebody different to who you are, so make sure you retain some of that individuality in the look you choose.
8. Go easy on the perfume
Although perfume adverts promise us that our favourite scents will make us sexier, it’s not a question of more perfume = more sexy. A little bit helps you smell nice, but too much can be really overwhelming. Just dab a little perfume on your wrists, on your neck and behind your ears – a quick spray in the hair is also a good idea so it smells nice when you hug. Don’t forget deodorant too – you may be nervous and therefore a little more sweaty than normal!
What not to wear
There are a few things that us ladies should definitely avoid on first dates – they are:
- Empire dresses – even when they’re in style, let’s face it, they make you look pregnant.
- A tent (or the clothing equivalent) – yes, you want your man to see your winning personality but looks and attraction are important too so wear something that shows the best of your figure.
- Too much make up / false nails / lashes / fake tan … – there’s one thing that turns a lot of guys off and that’s ‘high maintenance’ girls. Try not to look like you spent 3 days getting ready, even if you actually did.