The Match Lab

After How Many Dates Should You Kiss?


When it comes to knowing how many dates before a kiss is ideal, there’s a fine balance between kissing too soon and waiting too long.

Based on our research, the second date is the best time for a first kiss.

Here’s why…

Research Says to Wait Two Dates Before Kissing

It’s clear that the second date is the best time to kiss for that first time.

And that’s not just our opinion… It’s a fact we got from conducting real scientific research led by a psychologist with a PhD.

In our research surveying people on how they feel about first kisses in dating, we’ve found that 45% of people say the second date is the ideal time for a first kiss.

Only 15% of people say the first date is ideal, and 26% say the third date is ideal.


Read: Going for a Kiss on the Third Date: What to Know

Kissing on the First Date vs Waiting Until the Second Date

Overall, going for a kiss on the second date is a good plan to have a first kiss at the right time.

And if you want to wait a bit longer, the third date should be ok too.

Keep in mind, though, the risks of kissing too soon. You might (a) cross a physical boundary prematurely or (b) give too much away, missing an opportunity develop budding intrigue.

Once you have a first kiss, some of that physical mystery factor does go away. So it can be good to let a date or two pass to create tension and anticipation.

That said, a decent chunk of people do feel comfortable enough to kiss on the first date. And there’s something to be said about being bold and going for what you want, as long as you do it respectfully and get consent.

No matter what date you choose to go for the first kiss, trust your instincts, respect your date’s boundaries and comfort level, and be present in the moment.

Comfort and Confidence in a First Kiss

Before going in for a first kiss, you should take a moment to get in touch with your personal comfort levels and make sure you feel confident in what you’re doing.

When you go in for a kiss with confidence, knowing it’s the right time on the right date, then that energy you give off will help your date feel more relaxed and confident too.

Read: 4 Reasons Why Confidence is So Attractive

Remember that these insights are just averages. They’re people’s opinions on the whole. At the end of the day, there’s no set rule for when a kiss should happen, and any of the first few dates can be considered a healthy and normal time for that milestone.

When to have a first kiss with someone you’re dating can vary depending on factors like your age, culture, personal beliefs, or just the nature of this particular relationship.

Reflect on your personal comfort levels and remember that it’s okay to wait more dates if you don’t feel entirely ready by the first or second date.

Avoiding Miscommunications

The more dates that pass before you kiss, though, the more you risk miscommunicating intention or losing the other person’s interest.

To avoid that from happening, you can just talk openly about the first kiss with your partner and let them know how you’re feeling and that you’re interested in kissing them on a later date but would like to wait some more time.

Confidence and self-comfort can make any time the right time for a first kiss, so as long as you communicate with your date so you both feel self-assured and secure together.

Reading Body Language

Body language is a powerful tool to harness in feeling out the ideal date for a kiss and when exactly to go in for a move.

Paying attention to your date’s body language can tell you important information about their feelings and intentions.

Look for signs that your date is interested in kissing you, such as them staring at your mouth or leaning in closely while maintaining eye contact with you.

Now, if they seem distant or maintain a clear physical barrier from you, then they’re probably nor ready for a kiss or they’re just anxious (or avoidant) about dating and intimacy.

Remember that every person expresses themselves differently, so it’s important to be attentive and sensitive to your date’s personal way of connecting and their timeline.

Read: When to Ask for a Second Date: How Long Should You Wait?

Paying Attention to Instincts

If you’re ever on a date and feeling like you’re unsure whether now is a good time to kiss, then listen to your instincts and read the room.

Your instincts can tell a lot about when right time for a first kiss is. See how your mind and body are reacting to your date’s words and body language. Do they make you feel relaxed, excited, connected, and full of tension, or do they make you feel anxious and/or disinterested?

Sometimes, you’ll feel a natural lull in the conversation or a moment where the connection between you and your date naturally heightens. These are the perfect opportunities to gauge your date’s interest in a kiss and go in for it if they seem receptive.

Remember that the decision to kiss should be mutual and consensual, so always make sure that your date is ready for a kiss and has the opportunity to either accept or reject your move.

Some Rules for How Many Dates to Wait Before Kissing

When it comes to kissing someone new, people have all kinds of different thoughts and preferences.

Some people prefer to be more spontaneous and get that kiss in soon, while others are more cautious and deliberate about it.

There are plenty of cases where people believe in expressing their feelings and getting a gauge on physical compatibility on the very first date. Kissing on the first or second date can be exciting and signal clear chemistry between both people.

Read: 11 Pros & Cons of Kissing on the First Date

And there are also plenty of cases where people want to wait and see how the relationship develops a few dates in before even considering a kiss. For some people, kissing only feels comfortable if there’s a strong emotional connection established first.

Here are some tips for knowing how many dates in you should wait before having a first kiss.

The Three-Date Rule

One popular rule of thumb is the three-date rule.

This rule says that you should wait three dates before kissing.

While some people feel comfortable with this guideline of locking lips on the third date, it’s definitely not a perfect rule for every scenario.

For the majority of people, kissing by the second date is perfectly fine and even ideal.

When There’s Instant Chemistry

How many dates before kissing depends on the natural chemistry between you and the other person.

Some people just experience an overwhelming feeling of instant chemistry with someone on a first date right away.

And in these cases, two people can feel a mutual desire to share a passionate kiss during that first meeting. If this is you, then go for it!

In fact, 68% of people say they’re open to kissing on the first date.

As long as both you and your date are comfortable, there are no hard rules that dictate when the first kiss should happen, and the first date can be a time of immediate chemistry that feels good to act on.

Read: Creating Chemistry on a First Date: 7 Tips for Feeling a Spark

Signs Your Date is Ready for a Kiss

Asking Questions

One way to tell if your date is ready for a kiss is by being attentive to the types of questions they ask you.

If they’re asking about your romantic history, interests, or preferences, then that could be a sign that they’re trying to get a better understanding of how you feel about physical intimacy. Kissing might be on their mind.

If your date is asking these kinds of questions, they might also be seeking subtle reassurance that their own feelings and intentions align with yours.

Be open and honest in your responses, as that will help you establish trust and clear intentions, which are important building blocks for a good first kiss.

Initiating Physical Contact

Another sign that your date may be ready for a kiss is if they initiate physical contact.

Pay attention to subtle gestures, such as touching your hand or arm during conversation or your date leaning in closer to you as your time together progresses.

These steps toward physical touch show a level of increasing comfort and growing interest between the two of you.

If you notice that your date is initiating physical contact more frequently, it could be a sign that they’re hoping to share a first kiss with you.

Read: The Physical Touch Love Language Explained

Sending Verbal Hints

Sometimes, your date may drop verbal hints about wanting to kiss you.

They might bring up the topic of kissing in general, or casually mention their thoughts on physical affection and intimacy.

If your date compliments your lips or shares a story about a memorable kiss they’ve had in the past, then those are really compelling signs they might be ready to kiss you.

Always remember that no amount of signs means for sure that someone wants to kiss you. Consent is essential before making that move.

By paying attention to signs, you can get a better feel for when it’s a good time to make the move — and maximize the chances that your date receives your move with open arms and puckered lips.

And When You Do Have That First Kiss…

It can tell you a lot about yourself and your partner, and where things could go.

Chemistry and Connection

Kissing is a powerful way to build chemistry and connection between two people.

Having a first kiss with someone helps you gauge your compatibility with them and also helps you express your emotions and intentions.

Often, a kiss is the first significant step toward breaking past that touch barrier and exploring deeper forms of physical intimacy.

When you share a good kiss with your partner, chemicals like dopamine and oxytocin are released in your brain and your partner’s brain, which creates feelings of happiness and promotes attachment.

That’s why kissing can go a long way in deepening the bond between you and a partner.

Physical Intimacy

Physical intimacy is a core part of most relationship, and kissing tends to lie at the heart of physical intimacy.

Kissing gives a way for you and your partner to express affection, passion, care, and desire for one another.

Regularly kissing can improve relationship satisfaction, and initiating a first kiss can pave the way toward a strong and healthy relationship early on in dating.

Emotional Connection

Long-term relationships depend on a mutually strong emotional connection and trust.

That’s where kissing really shines.

Kissing is more than just a physical act; it’s a way to emotionally bond.

When you kiss someone, you connect on a psychologically rich level and create a sense of closeness and trust.

Studies show that kissing triggers the release of oxytocin, which is the main neurochemical that promotes emotional bonding in couples.

These emotionally rich aspects of kissing can highlight that it’s not just about how many dates before you kiss, but also about what mindset you take into a first kiss.

When you view a kiss as a way to connect and bond with someone, then you can nurture your budding relationship and propel it forward through kissing.

By understanding the role of kissing in evaluating compatibility, building chemistry, furthering physical intimacy, expressing emotional connection, and deepening attachment, you can think through what kissing means to you and have a better feel for the ideal number of dates in you’d like to wait for that first kiss.

How to get more first dates from dating apps

Hopefully these tips give some insights into knowing on what date should you first kiss.

If you’re on dating apps and want to improve your dating profile so you land more first dates, we have you covered.

We at The Match Lab offer professional services to create dating profiles that attract high-quality matches.

If you’d like to find out which are your most attractive photos to use in your dating profile, give our dating photo analyzer a try. Just upload some photos of yourself, and our algorithm will reveal which photos you should be using in your profile and the ideal order they should go in.

If you’re looking for help with writing your dating profile, then check out our professional dating profile writing service.

Related articles:

10 Reasons Why You Keep Having Bad First Dates

How Long Between a First and Second Date is Ideal?

Texting Between the First and Second Date: 5 Rules to Know

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