First Time Sex
May 29, 2020

How Do You Kiss Someone For The First Time?

There are a few things you can do to prepare for your first smooch.
Written by
Olivia Harvey
Published on
May 29, 2020
Updated on
What's changed?
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If you’re nervous about your first kiss, don’t be — we’ve got your back.

Ah, the first kiss. We’ve seen it hyped up in movies, TV, and young adult books for generations. It has the power to light a mystical spark between two people that could grow into a blazing fire of love and passion. Or, it can be awkward. Like, really awkward. Your first kiss doesn’t have to be anything extraordinary, nor does it have to seal your fate to any one person. But, understandably, nailing your first kiss can be a source of stress, so we’re here to give you some first kiss tips to keep in your back pocket for when the time comes.

What is the average age for a first kiss?

The average age for a first kiss is 15, according to the One Love Foundation. Note that this number represents an average, not what’s normal or abnormal. It’s normal to have your first time at the age when you feel ready, which may depend on factors like your upbringing, religious background, body image, etc. First kisses can happen at any age and at any time.

How long should a first kiss last?

Well, a first kiss should last for as long or short as you and your partner want it to. It’s important to “read the room” when it comes to kissing. If your partner is into it, and you’re into it, keep the kiss going. But if it feels wrong or strange for any reason, you are free to pull away and break the kiss off. Let your gut and your kissing partner guide you. Simply asking if your partner wants to keep going is always a good idea, too. 

Should you be a good kisser for your first kiss?

Short answer: no. Long answer: being a “good kisser” means something different to everyone. Some enjoy soft lips, short pecks, and no tongue. Whereas others like a bit of biting, and intensity in their kisses. Your first kiss is basically a trial run — it’s your first opportunity to figure out what you might like. That said, there are some first kiss tips you can try to get you started. 

How to have a first kiss

  • Keep it soft. This means that you should strive to keep your lips pouty and free of tension. And this also means thwarting your tongue from being too aggressive.
  • Keep your tongue on a short leash. Most people enjoy working a bit of tongue into their kissing sessions, as it can heighten arousal (which we’ll get into later). But, too much tongue could be a major turnoff, especially for a first kiss. Think of your tongue as a teasing tool and use it sparingly. Keep it at the front of your partner’s mouth, focusing tongue action on lips rather than the back of the throat. Remember, your partner will be a lot more fun to kiss if they can breath properly.
  • Teeth should be teasing tools, as well. Again, the star of the show should be your lips, with your tongue and teeth playing supportive roles. A gentle lip bite can be an incredible turn on, so if you’d like to incorporate a nibble into the game, then by all means do so. Just remember that you’re trying to turn this person on and not draw blood.
  • Pay attention to cues. Follow your partner’s lead if you’re comfortable. If they are going in for a deeper kiss and you’re into it, go for it. And, if you’re really concerned about what your kissing partner may think of the experience, communicate with them throughout. Do you like this? Should I be gentler/rougher? 
  • Know what to do with your hands. A few ideas: put your hands on the person’s waist, or rest your hands on both of the person’s shoulders. Or, you can gently place your hands on the person’s face or behind their head. 
  • If you can only remember one thing, let it be this — be gentle. Until you start communicating with someone about how they like to be kissed, or until you learn how you like to be kissed, keep it simple and keep it gentle. You cannot go wrong with soft, relaxed lips, a bit of tongue, and a soft nip. Once you get the basics down, you can start working on your skillset.

How does a first kiss feel?

Again, this depends on the people involved and the situation. Like we’ve seen in movies and television before, your first kiss may be the source of fireworks. If you’re sharing a first kiss with someone you really like and who you have built chemistry with, this could certainly be the case. 

One Reddit user described their first kiss as “amazing. My mind kind of went blank, and you know how people talk about their hearts 'swelling'? Yeah, that's what it felt like.” However, another Redditor on the same thread described her first kiss as “long, wet and sloppy,” and not in a good way.

When you have your first kiss, no matter how the actual kiss itself is, you’re going to probably feel something going on inside your body. Tingles, butterflies in your stomach, and increased heart rate is all normal, and all these signs point to arousal. Per, arousal, or being “turned on,” can also cause an erection and increased sensitivity of your penis or clitoris, and wetness down there can occur as well. And if you start having some erotic thoughts during the kiss, that’s also normal, and will just heighten your desire and arousal.

The most important thing to remember regarding your first kiss is that it’s supposed to be fun. 

If you’re having a hard time getting into a positive headspace about your first kiss, here’s how you can talk yourself up and get your body ready for when it eventually happens:

  • Kissing is fun. Ask anyone who has engaged in a romantic kiss, even just a handful of times, and they’ll tell you that, even if they don’t feel confident about their kissing skills, it’s still so fun to kiss someone. A first kiss is like a roller coast — the anticipation leading up to that first drop can be a bit crippling and scary. But once the ride is over, chances are your adrenaline will tell you that you want to again.
  • You are absolutely kissable. If you feel as though you’re never going to have a first kiss because you can’t imagine anyone wanting to kiss you — stop that right now! Everyone is capable and deserving of a wonderful first kiss, and if you strap yourself into that confident mindset (while still being respectful of consent and others’ wishes), you’ll get a great first kiss. 

If for any reason your body is telling you not to go in for a kiss with someone, even if you want it to feel right, then don’t do it. Wait until all your senses are sure you’re ready to dive in, no matter how long that might take. And don’t overthink it, either. You’re going to be fine. Besides, the only way to become “good” at something is to practice. In time, you’ll learn to be a better kisser. So, have fun, expect to learn a thing or two about what you like in a kiss, and enjoy your first. You’ve got this.

Reviewed for Medical Accuracy

Olivia Harvey is a freelance writer and award-winning screenwriter from Boston, Massachusetts.

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