4 Secrets to Being Confident

The key to success with the opposite sex? Confidence. We share our secrets for getting it.

man in suit with woman behind him nuzzling his neck
(Image credit: Valentin Casarsa)

We've heard it (and said it) a million times: confidence is sexy. But how do you deal when you're lacking in that department? We asked members of Marie Claire Ask & Answer — Marie Claire's online Q&A community for dating, sex, and relationship advice — for their secrets to appearing confident and sexy. "This is one of those areas where you start out faking it, but as you go along, you feel more capable of handling situations, and hence become more confident," Answerology member logash365 says. How to fake it until you make it:

Secret #1: Stand Up Straight. Slouching has never done anyone's appearance any favors, so before you can speak and flirt with confidence, you need to look the part. Your mother was right. Now, shoulders back and chin up! And, silver75 adds, "Smile and look people in their eyes when you talk to them."

Secret #2: Speak Softy. "Don't raise your voice," says logash365. "A soft but firm voice will give the impression that you are in control of yourself and the situation." You don't have to be the loudest person in the room to come across as self-assured. Get them to lean in close instead.

Secret #3: Be Positive. If you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all — resist the urge to complain in order to fill an awkward silence. "Do not go on and on about how much you have to do, how little time there is, etc.," says logash365. That attitude "indicates that you are struggling to maintain control." Don't have much to say? Ask questions until the frog in your throat goes on its way. It's much more attractive to be a good listener than to be the rain on everyone's parade.

Secret #4: Don't Try Too Hard. Trying too hard to please when it comes to dating is a telltale sign of low confidence, says 7zebras. "No matter how much you like the person you are dating act as if they were a good friend," he advises. "Think of it this way," he says. "You and your good friend are going out for a drink. Do you buy a dozen roses, rent a limo, and spend $300 on dinner? Probably not." A certain amount of wooing is nice when you're dating, but resist the urge to overcompensate and go overboard too soon. Ask for a second opinion from a friend if you're prone to grand romantic gestures that only succeed in John Cusack movies.