5 Different Types of Flirting

You’re pretty sure you’re horrible at flirting but that’s not the case. There are different types of flirting, and it’s time to find out which one you are.


Though there are some people who can flirt effortlessly, many of us struggle with the idea of flirting with someone else, let alone figure out the different types of flirting and what works for us.

We have trouble seeing if someone is actually interested in us, and that can cause some awkwardness when it comes to knowing what to do. Not everyone shows the same signs when interested in someone. I know, I know, as if dating wasn’t hard enough already. But there is a silver lining to this. It’s not you; it’s your flirting style. See? Doesn’t that make you feel better already?

But seriously, I’m not joking. We generally talk about flirting as one thing, but in reality, there are different types of flirting styles and each of us go about flirting a different way.

That’s right; we’re all different. On the one hand, this makes it even more complicated, but on the other hand, now you know that there are five different styles of flirting.

The 5 types of flirting and how each of them work

Once you understand what the five styles are, it’ll be much easier to understand the people you interact with. Knowing how to read these signs will help you out and also help you understand yourself better. Why do you flirt the way that you do? What style do you fit in? It’s time to find out!
Yes, there are more ways than one.

Everyone is different

Here’s the thing, when it comes to attraction and interest, everyone has their own style and needs. Not everyone flirts in the same way, and this is why people struggle with figuring out if someone is interested in them or not. So, if you struggle with flirting, it’s not necessarily your fault.

We all know when someone isn’t interested

While we may not know when people are flirting with us, the one thing we do know is when someone isn’t interested. Usually, the problem comes with us being willing to accept the truth that this person isn’t into us and share the same feelings we have for them.

What does science have to say?

I’m not talking about this from thin air. When it comes to types of flirting styles, science has even backed up this claim. In 2015, a study from the University of Kansas discovered there are five different styles of flirting, showing there’s no right way to flirt or show romantic interest. So what are the five styles of flirting?


Type #1 Traditional flirting

This is considered to be old-school flirting. You know, where men make the first move and women take a passive role in the encounter. This can be a struggle for women as they need to wait for the man to make a move, which doesn’t always happen quickly. Traditional flirts are usually introverted and value emotional and physical intimacy. 

What are the signs of a traditional flirt?

How can you tell you’re talking to a traditional flirt? Well, look at your watch. If it takes them forever to make a move or ask you out on a date, then odds they’re traditional. Plus, if they’re more introverted and prefer deep conversations as opposed to small-talk, you have yourself a traditional flirt.

Type #2 Playful flirting

For people who are playful flirts, they use their flirting as a tool. They love spending their time innocently flirting with people, without the desire of a serious relationship. Why? Well, for playful flirts, their self-esteem is usually connected to their flirting. They’ll get an ego boost from flirting and will play games with you without any care. 

What are the signs of a playful flirt?

If there’s one thing playful flirts like to do, it’s to tease people. They love to use their charm and games to create sexual tension. They’re also not easy to get a date with; they like everything light and casual. If you start talking about serious subjects and you see their eyes glaze over, there’s your first clue. 

Type #3 Physical flirting

Well, you can guess what a physical flirt is all about. They love to touch. They’ll rub up against you, lean into you, and draw your attention into sexual areas of their body like their mouth. Physical flirts can build connections with ease and are quick to pick up on signs of interest from others. When you’re around a physical flirt, you may even feel slightly uncomfortable.

What are the signs of a physical flirt?

Are they constantly touching you? When they talk, they may grab your arm or give you hugs and kisses on the cheek. They’ll use touch and act rather suggestively. When around them, they come off as very confident and self-assured. 


Type #4 Sincere flirting

This is actually the most common types of flirting and to be honest; it’s not a bad thing. Sincere flirting is all about being direct and honest with how you feel about someone. The goal is to build an emotional connection by getting to know the person you’re interested in. Maybe you’ll ask them what book they’re reading or what music they like. This type of flirting can feel like friendship as well.

What are the signs of a sincere flirt?

For a sincere flirt, you’ll notice that they’ll ask you a lot of questions about yourself and genuinely try to get to know you. They’ll want to engage in a thoughtful conversation with you in a quiet place like a cafe. For a sincere flirt, it’s all about the connection. 

#5 Polite flirting

This is possibly the hardest type of flirting to pinpoint because this person is flirting in a polite manner. With a polite flirt, it’s easy to misread their flirting as they’re very subtle and follow the rules. They never overstep themselves and focus on being polite and building a well-mannered relationship.

What are the signs of a polite flirt?

You’ll need to pay attention as they’ll show interest, but they’ll make sure they’re polite about it. They won’t flirt using touch; instead, they’ll always give you enough personal space and will subtly compliment you. It’s a tough one to spot out!

You can be a mix

No one said you only fit into one of these categories. We’re human, which means we’re complex. Sigh. So, you can find yourself in a couple of these categories and using multiple types of flirting at the same time, which is perfectly normal. Not everyone fits into a single box, and that’s okay. I can say I used to be a mix of a traditional and playful flirt, but that’s also changed.

Now that you know the five types of flirting, which style(s) do you see yourself in? More importantly, does your style match the person you’re interested in?