A lot goes on when two people kiss. If it's a romantic kiss, you've probably gazed at each other and imagined getting closer. When your lips touch, you cross into a zone of intimate touch and smell. You literally breathe each other in.
A kiss can determine if physical attraction will spark or fizzle. "The kiss is the thing early in a relationship," says Katherine Ellin, PhD, MSW, DTR, licensed clinical psychologist and certified sex therapist in Cambridge, Mass.
When a kiss is right, it's magic. But a kiss that goes wrong is the stuff of tragedy. In this article, WebMD reveals the secrets behind a good kiss, and how you can become a better kisser.
1st Secret to Kissing: Pay Attention to Your Partner
"Kissing is almost like dancing with your lips," says social and personality psychologist, Jeremy Nicholson, MSW, PhD. Kissing styles range from closed-mouth pecks on the cheek to passionate French kisses. "You need to read your partner and figure out what style of kiss they're interested in," Nicholson tells WebMD.
You can be a better kisser with attention and practice, Ellin says. "Just like with anything sexual, you need to learn the technical skills first. Then you can add the artistry."
No matter what your level of skill and experience, kissing is not like riding a bike. Good kissers do not kiss by rote. Your ability to immerse yourself fully in a kiss plays a big part in whether your lips remain engaged or get shut out in the cold.
2nd Secret to Kissing: Start Out Slow
You might start by kissing your partner's face. "Around the lips, but not on the lips," says Ellin. Then lean back and gaze at your partner. If the object of your affection is leaning toward you, it's a good sign to continue. "It's better to leave your partner wanting more than feeling imposed upon by your kiss," says Ellin.
Start with a soft mouth when you first kiss your partner's lips. "You could have your lips overlapping and kind of nibble a little, maybe pull the lower lip out gently," suggests Ellin. "Some people like a little bit of teeth pulling on their lip and some people don't like it at all."
To graduate from technical skill to artistry, pay attention to your partner's sounds and body language. Some people like to have their faces touched, others don't. Some people like to be held very tight, others feel smothered. If the kissing progresses, it may naturally become wetter and sloppier as both of you get more aroused.