When it comes to wooing a woman, one-liners don’t always work. She tends to think of cheesy pick-up lines as “degrading, sexual, sexist, or just too forward,” says Terri Orbuch, Ph.D., author of Finding Love Again: 6 Simple Steps to a New and Happy Relationship.
But that doesn’t mean all corny pick-up lines will crash and burn. We polled female relationship experts to learn the opening bon mots that are funny and charming, and won’t end with a drink in your face. The trick, of course, is acknowledging the cheese right away, the experts say. Try these phrases during your next night out.
And for more smart seduction strategies, use these Proven Ways to Pick up Women.
1. “I’m sorry, were you talking to me?” [No.] “Well then, please start.”
A line like this lets her know you want to talk to her, not just see her naked, says sociologist Pepper Schwartz, Ph.D., author of The Normal Bar.
Wait to say your line until there’s a lull in whatever conversation she has going. Otherwise, she’ll just be annoyed that you interrupted, and no pickup line can save you.
2. “Hello, I’m doing a survey of what people think are the worst pickup lines. So, do you think it’s: ‘Do you come here often?’, ‘What’s your sign?’, or ‘Hello, I’m doing a survey of what people think are the worst pickup lines’?”
Making fun of pickup lines shows her you’re in on the joke and you have a sense of humor about yourself, Schwartz says.
Plus, since it’s funny without putting pressure on her, she will probably feel more comfortable and be more likely to open up, says Lisa Thomas, a Colorado-based marriage and sex therapist.
3. “You know, Dr. Phil says I’m afraid of commitment. Want to help prove him wrong?”
This cheesy pick-up line is a slight dig at all of the jerks in her past. And even if you do it in a joking manner, mentioning commitment capitalizes on her desire for a relationship-minded guy, says relationship expert Wendy Walsh, Ph.D.
4. “I bet you $20 you’re going to turn me down.”
“Most guys overestimate women’s interest in them, which can be obnoxious to women,” Walsh says. So a little bit of self-deprecation can actually make you stand out as a nice, grounded guy.
And unless you have pit stains or food in your teeth, she’s not going to flat-out say “you win.”
5. “How does it feel to be the most beautiful girl here?”
The meat market is all about competition, says Walsh. So by letting her know you’ve picked her over every other girl in the bar, she will truly feel complimented.
“You can never tell a woman often enough that she’s beautiful,” says Tammy Nelson, Ph.D., author of Getting the Sex You Want. But be careful: “sexy” and “hot” are not suitable synonyms.
Also beware of these 6 “Compliments” That Only Piss Her Off.
6. “Forget about Spiderman, Superman, and Batman. I’ll be your man.”
“Pretty much all women have rescue fantasies,” Walsh says. Play into hers with this joke. We guarantee she’ll be thinking about that famed upside-down Spiderman kiss.
7. “Besides being gorgeous, what do you do for a living?”
This cheesy pick-up line gets high marks for flattery, humor, and showing a general interest in her life, says Thomas. Plus, it prompts a real response from her that can hopefully segue into a conversation, Schwartz says.
Manage to score her a spot on her calendar? Don’t screw it up! Avoid these 13 Mistakes That Will Tank Your First Date.