• Sexuality expert and health coach, Elise Carr, tells SBS that singles should hold eye contact to let their date know they are willing and available. (Getty Images)
Single and ready to mingle? Try these sensual, scientific dating tips to impress your next date.
Zoe Collins

15 Dec 2016 - 2:51 PM  UPDATED 12 Jan 2017 - 1:28 PM

Dating might seem like a minefield but it doesn’t have to be. You can improve your game with a simple bit of science.

And the good news is that you don’t need model-like looks, perfect outfits or complex tricks to win that date over: all you need are your senses and a positive attitude.


Sexuality expert and health coach, Elise Carr, tells SBS that one of the best ways singles can communicate their availability to potential suitors is via eye contact.

“Hold their gaze, be present, listen, lean in and connect,” Carr says. “The eyes are the window to the soul after all, so you can read a person deeply if you are open.”

Research backs Carr up, with studies published in The Journal Of Research In Personality (1989) claiming that two minutes of ‘unbroken’ eye contact with a stranger of the opposite sex increases feelings of passionate love.  

Carr also insists that we remember the pleasures of good old fashioned, “visual stimulation” or attractiveness, as this subjective trait is often highly regarded by men.

Scientific studies have also found that red is the best colour for both genders to wear during a date. Obviously linked to fire and passion, red is a favourite for men because they associate it with sex, while women associate it with power and a potential for success.

“Hold their gaze, be present, listen, lean in and connect. The eyes are the window to the soul after all, so you can read a person deeply if you are open.”


Carr recommends a simple technique for snagging your date using the sense of sound: “just say their name”.

“Also speak words of kindness!” she says. “A genuine, observant compliment can also create an opportunity for them to see more of what kind of person you are, while allowing them to begin to take notice of what you like.”

And let’s be real, kindness is hot in any language.


New York Times bestselling author, Mama Gena of Pussy: A Reclamation refers to this sense in the the Like A Mother podcast. She says that all women should use the pheromones they let off to attract partners far and wide.

Carr agrees with the theory and votes for perfume or essential oils to be strategically placed under earlobes, on the breastbone, wrists and ankles for the win. “Also go for a little extra spritz in the hair if using perfume or a couple of drops of essential oil on the pubic mound (jasmine or ylang-ylang for women and sandalwood for men),” she says.


“Touch especially is an opportunity to tease, entice, comfort, suggest, or play,” Carr adds. She would know: she’s a Tantra practitioner.

There’s also evidence to suggest that light tactile contact increases the ‘compliance’ of any request, but especially those in a romantic context and particularly when used on a woman.


Science offers plenty in the way of libido boosting tips when it comes to the sense of taste.

Studies show that avocados, oysters, chilli, cocoa and chocolates are aphrodisiacs, which could ‘naturally’ spice up your date by triggering endorphins.

Of course endorphins should make you happier, which could be why these foods are often linked to dating success.

Research also identifies that Maca root, a new variety of powered superfood, could boost libidos.

Patience: the sixth sense?

Please note: all of this sensual dating advice from Carr comes with a warning. She tells SBS that the more serious the setting (like, say, a date), the more obvious you actually have to be to communicate your interest to a romantic partner. After all, you want them to know you are keen.

“Your touch communicates your desires too.” says Carr, so think about what you are communicating to your date. “Are you telling them this is a one off passion filled encounter? Or does the way you communicate on a date tell them “that this potentially something slow burn and serious?”

It’s also claimed by authors like Richard Wiseman and Robert Greene that a winning strategy is to play ‘hard-to-get’.

So if you decide that your date is worth the effort, don’t be afraid to slow down the sensual stimulation for the sake of securing a partner, long-term. 

SBS explores diversity in a bold and original way with a new commissioned weekly series, Undressed.

Undressed debuts Monday 16 January at 9:30pm on SBS. The first four episodes are available to watch now on SBS On Demand. Join the conversation: #Undressed  

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