Should You Kiss on a First Date?

Couple on date at restaurant smiling and talking
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When you're heading out on a first date, you might be wondering one thing: Will the night end with a kiss or not? While it's entirely normal to think about this in the hours leading up to said get-together, don't let the question overwhelm you. If you're having a great first date, the conversation is flowing, and you can feel the sparks flying between you both, you may be wondering if you should end the evening with a kiss. It's clear that you enjoyed your time with this person, but is it too much too soon?

Ultimately, you have to decide what's right for you and your dating life, but it can be helpful to understand the many different opinions around kissing after the first date. Here, we're sharing helpful pointers that will help you decide if ending the night with a peck on the lips is in your best interest or not.

See If You Have Chemistry

If you're on the fence, consider this: One of the benefits of kissing on a first date is that it can actually help you determine if there's even chemistry between you and your date. While you may have hit it off and have a lot in common, kissing on a first date enables you to see if you have any romantic rather than platonic potential. If the kiss is as terrific as the date was, this can be a great indicator that you have matching styles. If the kiss turns out to be bad, consider it an early indicator that you may not have compatible sexual styles, which could become more of an issue down the road.

In an article on Psychology Today, Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D. states that a first kiss is "positively [ornamental] behavior in and of itself and is linked to relationship satisfaction and commitment in adolescence and adulthood," adding, "If kissing is part of the search for self-definition that occurs in adolescence, as the authors propose, that first kiss could help you gain some clarity into your own goals and values." That said, give it a chance. Just because the first kiss might not have you seeing stars doesn't mean that you should drop your potential suitor like a hot potato. It just might help aid in your decision, that's all.

Enjoy the Fun

Another reason why people like to kiss on a first date is that kissing is—let's face it—fun. When you've had an enjoyable, engaging, and thrilling first date with someone, sealing the evening with a terrific French kiss can be a way to add an exclamation point on the great time that you had with one another. And, in some cases, kissing on a first date can leave you both excited about getting to see each other and kiss each other again in the future. Sheril Kirshenbaum, author of The Science of Kissing explains, "The more anticipation you feel leading up to a kiss, the greater the dopamine spike." Besides, if you're both vibing, don't get bogged down with what you think you should or should not be doing. Follow your instincts!

Leave Your Date Wanting More

Those who are opposed to kissing on a first date are often believers in the "less is more" mentality. While you clearly had a nice time with this person, there's something about leaving him or her wanting more that can work in your favor. By withholding a kiss on a first date, your date may leave wondering what it's like to kiss you and be even more motivated and inclined to ask you out on a second date. Playing hard to get can start on the very first date when you decide to save your kisses for another time.

Don't Expect It Leads to a Second Date

If you're wondering if you should kiss on a first date, the harsh truth is that it doesn't signify that you'll have another date with this person. There are plenty of daters who end up kissing at the end of a great first date, but then never hear from or see this person ever again. In some instances, kissing on a first date can simply mean that you're kissing this person goodbye for good, as many people who are serial daters or are only interested in hooking up may go in for the kiss now only to ghost you later.

Go With Your Gut

When it comes to kissing on a first date, it's important to remember that it's totally your decision. As no two first dates are alike, it's up to you to decide whether you'd like to kiss this person or not. And in most cases, this simply happens in the moment. There are many factors that can play a role in this decision, and sometimes the location of the first date, the time of day, or even the weather can be the reason to kiss or not to kiss at the end of the date.

The key is to trust your gut and go with what your instincts tell you, as having a blanket response to always or never kissing on a first date isn't entirely realistic. You have to trust yourself, and the more first dates that you go on, the more dating apps you join, and the more you put yourself out there, the better you'll be able to recognize firsthand if you should or shouldn't kiss someone.

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