Today's Love Tip
If you're a regular watcher of women's talk shows or the Sex and the City series and films, then you probably know what Kegels are. The exercise is named after Dr. Arnold Kegel, who invented an instrument that measured the strength of... Read More
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Pucker Up: Tips on How to Be a Great Kisser

If you love to kiss, but haven't been getting enough lip action lately, you may be looking to improve your smooching game. Pucker up for some valuable tips on how you can go from being a so-so lip locker to a great kisser with perfect kissing technique.

There is no such thing as "the perfect kiss." Each kiss can be perfect in its own rite and in that moment, and every kiss shared between a couple is special.

That being said, if you and your partner haven't been sharing those perfect kisses as often as you'd like, there may be a few reasons for those lackluster lip-locks.

Great Kissing Basics

Kissing is subjective. What works for one person may serve as a complete turn-off for another. Here are some basic kissing tips to consider:

  • Pucker up for smooth lips - Exfoliate your lips with a damp toothbrush. Use chapstick or lip balm regularly to prevent chapped lips.
  • Mind your breath - Don't eat onion or garlic if you want to smooch any time soon. We're not just talking during the dinner date, but the night before. Because onion and garlic odors originate from the lungs (not the mouth) and can last for 24 to 48 hours, simple brushing or breath mints won't completely erase the smell.
  • Freshen up - That being said, it never hurts to clean out your mouth after consuming tricky foods, so try eating a lemon or a sprig of fresh mint or parsley to cope with the odor.
  • Visit your dentist regularly - If you have lingering bad breath and you can't trace it to a specific food, get to the dentist promptly to see if you have a dental health condition (cavities, tarter, gum disease) that might be causing your bad breath.

And just as you want your mouth to smell kissable, your body should also be inviting. Don't douse yourself with strong perfume or cologne, as this may actually repel your partner, instead of encouraging them to snuggle-up.

How to Kiss With Purpose

You may know the techniques of how to kiss well, but to get the greatest impact; you should understand how to kiss with purpose. Tailor your kisses to the situation in which they occur. Kissing as part of foreplay should generate heat and a goodnight kiss can be more tender and gentle.

Your partner wants to experience what it's like to have close, physical contact with you. Never kiss with a cold mouth. Set the ice cream aside and let your mouth reach body temperature again before going in for a smooch. Don't kiss right after brushing your teeth. Your partner wants to taste you, not your toothpaste or food.

Knowing how to kiss with purpose includes knowing the types of kisses; the affectionate kiss, the passionate kiss and tongue kissing. No matter what type of kiss you're interested in sharing with your partner, having kissable lips will only improve the experience for both of you.

An affectionate kiss is a short, closed-mouth kiss and can be done in public. Its purpose is to help reinforce a couple's bond. Soft lips with a natural shade, or a smudge-proof lip color, practically beg for affectionate kisses. While you don't mind staking your claim, you don't have to leave lipstick stains all over your partner to mark your territory. Let your perfect kiss be the signature.

Kissable Lips for a Passionate Kiss

The passionate kiss is performed with a partly-opened mouth, overlapping another, and usually lasts longer than a minute. It can be the passionate kiss that occurs after a great first date. You know; that "good night kiss" that makes your knees wobbly and awaken the butterflies in your stomach.

Prepare for sparks to fly by wearing a good kissable lipstick. A kissable lipstick that has little emollient, like a lip stain, works best for kissable lips. A few brands to try include Revlon's Colorstay or L'Oreal Endless Lipcolour. The key to a good kissable lipstick is finding one that doesn't come off your lips onto his face.

Tongue Kissing & Kissable Lips

Playful tongue kissing that mimics sex can act as foreplay. For maximum pleasure for both you and your partner, aim for smooth, bare, kissable lips on a warm and odor-free mouth. This should make tongue kissing a frenzied affair for both.

It's not unusual for tongue kissing "make out sessions" to wane as couples progress in their relationship, or lose focus on the importance that kissing can play in maintaining a couple's bond. If your partner has stopped or decreased tongue kissing as foreplay, it may be because he feels he has moved on to bigger and better things. Don't be afraid to reignite that flame by initiating contact, or simply saying; "Let's kiss."

Passionate kisses are those made with the purpose of making or cementing a deep connection. A passionate kiss can tell your partner, "I want more of you," or "I'm willing to trust you."

Passionate kisses can incorporate the tongue, although this is not necessary to make a connection. If you want to make your message clear through passionate kisses, there are some kiss tips you can follow.

Tips for Being a Great Kisser

Kissing is about more than just the lips (and tongue). Think about what you're doing with your body while engaging in a kiss. Put your hand on his jaw and neck while kissing. Run a hand through your partner's hair or put your hands on the small of his back. Keep your head vertical and use less head tilt to deliver your passionate kisses.

If you want your kissing to signal to your partner that you'd like to take it to the next level, try these tips for being a great kisser:

  • Start off with a tender, lip-centric "I trust you" kiss. Then, add a little tongue toward the end.
  • Tilt your head to the side as you slip your partner the tongue.
  • Be wary of going overboard with your tongue. You're not trying to play tonsil hockey! Gently explore your partner's mouth with the tip of your tongue until you get into a rhythm with one another.
  • Don't be afraid to give a soft nibble when kissing passionately. Use your lips to pull your partner's bottom lip into your mouth and very gently bite the lip. Don't draw blood! The only mark you should leave will be in his or her mind.

While these kissing tips are mostly for new couples who are still in the beginning stages of establishing a physical relationship, it never hurts to revamp an existing relationship with some great kissing techniques.

Part of being a great kisser is being open with your partner about what is and is not working for you. If you've been avoiding passionate kissing with your partner, tell them what types of kisses you prefer. Or better yet, show them with your own lip-locking skills.

Kissing is a two-way street, and it's important to communicate-either verbally or physically-with your partner about what kissing techniques work best for the two of you. The best way to be a great kisser is to devote yourself entirely to the moment, both physically and mentally. Loosen-up, relax and get lost in the experience.

Of course, you'll always want to pay close attention to things like breath (avoid garlic and overly strong mints) and tongue placement (don't shove it in his mouth, or be too timid about using it), but don't get so hung up on the rules that you forget to have fun.

To be a great kisser, you have to have passion about what you are doing. So, pucker up, and enjoy the ride. In no time, you'll be a master lip-locker.

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When Platonic Relationships Might Not Be So Platonic

Do you have a friend who lately seems like they might want to be more than just a friend? Are you having a hard time figuring out just how platonic your friendship might be? Navigating any relationship can be difficult, but there a few fairly reliable ways to figure out if your friendship could be headed to the next level.

The first thing you need to think about is how you and your friend communicate, as this can often be the key to your true feelings.

Communicating With Your Friend

First, ask yourself: How do we communicate? Do you email, text, call or primarily talk in person? Each method of communication has its own level of intimacy. If you find yourself on the phone with your friend just to exchange basic information that could be sent through text or email, there may be something to that.

If you're using any excuse you can muster to hear his or her voice, there's a good chance one of you wants more than just friendship. The more intimate the mode of communication the more intimate you probably want to be.

Next, you'll need to consider how often you communicate. Emailing and texting might not be super intimate, but if you're doing it all the time, your relationship could definitely be slipping outside the lines of platonic. Do you find any excuse you can to text your friend? Do you email them when you discover something just a little bit funny online or you have a question about "that one movie with that one guy..."? Are they doing the same? These are big clues that you want to be more than friends.

Paying attention to how you keep in touch with a friend is a great way to see if you might want to make out more than just hang out. Keep tabs on how you keep tabs on each other and you'll be one step closer to determining where you stand.

After you've considered how you communicate with your "platonic" friend, the next part of your relationship to examine is your level and nature of physical contact. In other words how often and where do you touch? Body language holds many answers for friends who might secretly want to be more.

First, ask yourself, how do you touch? Does your friend find any excuse to touch you? Have there been many times that they've "accidentally" brushed your arm or leg, or touched your hair? Do you find yourself doing the same? If so, chances are that there is some physical chemistry brewing under the surface. If you're unsure of where your relationship stands start paying attention to how you touch one another and you'll likely find some answers as to whether you are more than just friends.

Next, consider what's going on with your body language. How close do you sit to one another? Do you turn your bodies towards each other? Are you often touching yourself (hair, lips, face)? The more you're facing each other and touching yourself, the more you're likely projecting what you want to happen - in other words, being close to them and touching.

Do you find yourself caring more about your appearance when you know you're going to see them? If you're making a point to wear your best clothes and use your favorite perfume or cologne when you know you're going to see your friend, chances are pretty good that you want to arouse their attraction. You should ask yourself whether you care about those things when you hang out with other platonic friends. If not, it's time to consider that your platonic friend isn't so platonic.

Keeping track of how you touch, use your bodies and present yourself is an easy way to determine what you really want from a relationship and puts you one step closer to knowing if you're more than just friends.

Once you've really nailed down your verbal and non-verbal communication habits, including body language, it's time to look at the reality of what types of relationships you both have with other people. All the signs might be there, but if your platonic friend is in a serious relationship with someone else or is sleeping with a lot of people, it might not matter.

Are either of you dating someone else? Are those relationships long-term? If your platonic friend already has a non-platonic friend it might not matter how often you talk or touch. Even if a spark is there, do you want your friend to end a relationship they've been in for a long time? They might have feelings for you that go beyond platonic, but those feelings might not be strong enough to end their current relationship.

If you and your friend aren't in long-term romantic relationships with other people, you should move on to the reality of your sex lives. Are you or the platonic friend sleeping with anyone or a lot of other people? If they are, all of the signs that suggest you might have a not-so-platonic relationship might just mean that one of you likes to flirt or that one of you is more of a touchy-feely person. Sex and love are two different things and you might not want to ruin your platonic friendship for a romantic relationship that might not pan out in the end.

When all the signs are there and you find yourselves getting out of-or ending-physical relationships with other people, the chances are good that you are more than just friends.

Keeping track of how you touch, use your bodies and present yourself is an easy way to determine what you really want from a relationship and puts you one step closer to knowing if you're more than just friends.

Relationships can be complicated, even when both parties make their desires and interests known. But in less straight-forward circumstances-such as when platonic friends develop romantic feelings for one another-it isn't easy to determine what you might be feeling-let alone what your friend might be thinking! By keeping an eye out for a few key signals, you'll have a better idea if your supposedly platonic friend is interested in being more than just friends.

Pay attention to how and when you communicate, what you're both doing with your bodies and what (if any) romantic relationships you might have with other people and you'll be that much closer to understanding what you both want from each other.

If you still aren't sure, consider a quick kiss. The truth may lie in what happens when your lips connect!

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5 Signs He Is the Right One For You

Wish as we might-and despite what romantic comedies would have you believe-there is no magic answer to finding the perfect mate. Discovering if someone is the right one for you usually takes some time. Although we may wish to act solely on instinct-which can be helpful in determining if he is the right one-it is important to give it time before reaching that final decision.

While there is no set-in-stone policy for finding love, there are 5 signs you can use to determine if he is the one.

Sign #1 He Is the Right One - You Respect One Another

When it comes to figuring out if he is the right one, respect should be at the top of the list. Respect is also something that should go both ways. He should respect you and you should respect him, in turn.

You can tell he respects you when:

  • He is willing to compromise
  • He listens to your concerns and feelings
  • He notices when something is wrong and asks you about it
  • He values your opinion
  • He appreciates you
  • He is genuinely happy for you when you succeed

All of these are signs that he has respect for you. You should also demonstrate these same things to him. On the other hand, if you find that either of you are unwilling to compromise, concerns and feelings are dismissed, or you notice something is wrong but don't inquire, then you have some tell-tale signs that there is a lack of respect.

If either of you flippantly dismisses the other's opinions or act as if they are inconsequential, there is clearly a lack of respect. If you greet one another's successes with jealousy instead of enthusiasm and support, you need to take a minute to assess the level of respect that exists in your relationship.

Sign #2 He Is the Right One - He Has the Qualities You're Looking For

Ideally, you should know ahead of time what qualities are important to you in a mate. Trying to figure it out after the fact can lead to serious problems. If you have a good idea of the qualities you are looking for-the ones that are the most important-it will help you determine if he is the right one.

It helps to write a list. Select at least 10 qualities you are looking for in a man. Put that list in the order of importance. Take a serious look at the list and cross off any qualities that aren't so important. Some qualities are probably negotiable. If that is the case, they can likely be removed from the list. The idea is to get down to at least the top 5 non-negotiable qualities that you are looking for.

All of this must be done by keeping 2 important things in your mind. First, no one is perfect. If you are looking for Mr. Perfect, you might as well stop looking and recognize that perfection simply doesn't exist. With that in mind, know that you don't have to just "settle" for "good enough." You want to have the confidence of knowing that he is not someone you have simply settled for but he is the right one for you. The list of qualities you are looking for will help determine that.

Compare your list of top 5 non-negotiable traits and compare it to the man in question. Remember, these were non-negotiable qualities that you selected, so if he doesn't fit all of them, there is a good chance that he is not the right one for you. It's surprisingly easy to fall into the trap of trying to change your standards, but you should never change your standards to fit someone else. You can't make someone be who they aren't.

If he meets every one of your non-negotiable qualities, chances are good that he may be the right one for you.

Sign #3 He Is the Right One - You Share the Same Values

What do you value most? What values make up the life you have chosen to live? These are important questions to ask yourself, as they will help determine if he is the right one for you. Values are usually in-line with those non-negotiable items that will give you a clue as to whether or not he is the right one. If you don't share the same values, consider that to be a red flag.

An important factor to consider is if you find yourself compromising your values for him. Values really make up who we are. If you are changing your values in order to please someone else, then you are essentially trying to change yourself and that is never a good sign in a relationship!

Values are something that should be discussed ahead of time. Don't guess at what he values most in life, ask him! If he doesn't seem to have any values, or he can't articulate them, that might be another red flag to look for. A man of real substance is flexible, but will possess firm, well-reasoned values.

Sign #4 He Is the Right One - Your Intuition Tells You

Your intuition-your gut-should never be ignored. At the same time, it should never be THE deciding factor. Your intuition should serve as a guide, something you rely on when considering whether or not he is the right one.

Intuition is more than just how physically attracted you are towards him. It goes beyond that to a place deep inside where you just seem to "know." It's usually just a sense or a feeling that this person is the right one.

Whether your instincts are saying he is or isn't the one, it's an important consideration. Many times our instincts are right. Of course, our best instincts can be wrong and someone can present themselves to be something that they are not. This is why intuition is only one sign to consider in determining if he is the right one for you.

Sign #5 He Is the Right One - You Can Be Yourself With Him

You will not be appreciated or valued by a man who tries to change you or who cannot love you, flaws and all. So if you can be who you are when you are with him, he might just be the right one for you. This means he not only accepts the good in you, but also your weaknesses and faults. When you can be yourself, you will experience a sense of freedom. You will have confidence in knowing that he accepts you just as you are.

When taking these 5 signs into consideration, you will have a good idea if he is actually the right guy for you.

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