Guys - Increase Your Chances

Here are some quick, inexpensive and (best of all) easy things you can do to improve your dating odds.

By Bob Strauss

kay, so you’d like to make yourself more physically attractive to the opposite sex, but you’re not willing to put in the arduous, long-term effort required to do so. Don’t despair: You don't have to pay for plastic surgery, work out twice a day at the gym for the next five years or get yourself cast on Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. We’ve made a much simpler self-improvement checklist for you to follow.

Get a haircut
That mullet may have been popular in high school, but the women you hit on
Ask your barber for something a little more fashionable.
may think you’ve escaped from the zoo. Ask your barber for something a little more fashionable. (Come to think of it, was that mullet even popular in high school?)

Lose the jewelry
Despite what you may have seen on The Sopranos, real men don’t wear necklaces, pinky rings or monogrammed belt buckles. Limit youself to one tasteful yet understated earring (if that’s your style) or a nice but not overly garish wristwatch.

Remember your posture
There’s a reason your mom kept nagging you about this — not only is slouching unattractive, but it takes a couple inches off your height. (Be careful not to overcompensate, lest your date think you have a stick up your you-know-what.)

Go easy on the cologne
Yes, women like guys who smell nice. But scent isn’t an additive quality — if you smell good when you dab on a little musk, you won’t smell great when you splash on a lot. If you don’t know the difference, go without.

No, I’m not really concerned about your dental hygiene. But if you make a point of flossing before you go out on a date, you’re bound to
Of course, it would help not to eat garlic bagels with chives for lunch.
catch any week-old broccoli, tortilla fragments or lima-bean husks wedged visibly between your two front teeth.

Try to match
Does vermilion go with aquamarine? Only chicks know for sure. But you should at least have enough savvy about basic colors not to wear orange shirts with red pants and blue shoes. (If you’re truly hopeless at this, play it safe and dress all in black.)

An amazing number of guys think late-evening stubble makes them look irresistible. The sad truth, though, is that only a handful of movie stars can pull this off — the rest of us look like we just shuffled in from the canning factory.

Check your breath
What with recent advances in breath-modification technology — lozenges, sprays, pills, etc. — you’d have to be living in a cave not to smell minty-fresh 24/7. Of course, it would help not to eat garlic bagels with chives for lunch.

Wear nice shoes
Don’t ask why, but women are always judging men by their shoes. There’s no need to run out and buy $300 Italian loafers, but at least change out of your gym sneakers before meeting her for dinner. And while we’re on the subject of feet…

Clip your toenails
I can already hear you whining, “Aw, c’mon! She’s not gonna see my bare feet!” Well, Mr. Know-It-All, if you follow the advice here, you don’t know what she’s gonna see. And do you want a razor-sharp pinky nail cutting your evening short?

Bob Strauss is a freelance writer and children’s book author who lives in New York City. He’s also written the Dinosaur guide on, the online information network owned by the New York Times.
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Would you buy someone a holiday gift that you've been dating for less than 6 months?

Yes, if I want the relationship to continue

Maybe, but only to avoid seeming rude

No, that's too early to exchange gifts

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