FIRST dates can be a minefield.
And while everyone is always quick to give their advice on the do's and don'ts of a first meet – these tips can be misguided and could send your date climbing out that bathroom window.
But help is at hand thanks to one of the UK's premier love experts.
Kezia Noble, 41, is a London-based dating guru with over 16 years' experience.
Speaking to The Sun, she shared her top five things to avoid on a first date so you can turn a potential car crash meeting into a crushing success.
Stay away from cinemas and avoid intimate restaurants
In no uncertain terms should you ever go to the cinema or a fancy restaurant on a first date, Kezia says.
She warns singletons: "You sit in silence for two hours and afterwards you feel like going home."
And while people may claim they liked to be wined and dined, these can be overly intense atmospheres that put unnecessarily high amounts of pressure on your date.
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Throwing yourself into a posh restaurant can hurt the wallet too, and it'll sting that little bit more if the date doesn't go to plan.
Kezia explained: "If you are sitting there and you are picking up the bill, and half way through the main course you realise you are not vibing, you're stuck there with a big bill."
A bar or going for a coffee is much more ideal for a first date, keep restaurants for round two.
Stop looking for things in common, start looking for connections
Kezia says: "A lot of people say 'I didn't have a lot in common with that person', but I always say you're not looking for a friend – you're looking for a lover.
"Having things in common is important for a friendship, but you can can connect with somebody on a deeper emotional level without having anything in common with them."
For instance, if your date enjoys playing sports and you don't – do not give up hope.
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Look for attractive characteristics and traits within their interests which could appeal to you, such as drive or ambition, by asking why they have the hobbies they do.
Use this as an opportunity to probe their character and you may find you have far more connections than it may seem.
If you're nervous, don't say it!
"It's not appealing", says Kezia.
She adds: "When you say I am nervous, it actually puts a lot of pressure on the other person to make you feel relaxed."
The love guru admitted that if a woman says she is feeling nervous, it may come across as quite "cute".
The same can't be said for men, though, as it "doesn't go well with women" and can "feel quite weak" on the bloke's behalf.
"You want someone who is confident and assertive on a date – otherwise you start feeling sorry for them and this kills any potential spark", she stressed.
Don't over flatter the person
"People over-flatter because they think it will make the other person feel good and they see it as a form of a compliment – it is not", Kezia warns.
By all means, give someone a compliment – but you don't want to at the cost of making you appear inferior to your date.
She explains: "You can't go in there thinking I'm a five and she's a ten, or vice versa.
"You need to appear desirable too and showering people in flattery can leave them feeling awkward and put them off."
You can't go in there thinking I'm a five and she's a ten
So avoid making comments such as "I bet you go on loads of dates" and "I bet loads of men are after you" – this will kill the date.
One clever trick the dating expert says you can use is to approach every date as a "5 out of 10" – their personality and character can make up for the rest of it.
Stay away from relationship conversation
"You should never say I am not looking for anything serious, even if you're not, you don't know how this could unfold.
"Say: 'I am in a good place in my life right now, and if I meet someone and I like them, then I am open to them'."
Kezia explains this is a "selling point" and a positive thing for your date to hear.
She adds: "On one level it is saying 'I don't need someone to fulfil me right now' but then you are also saying I am open if I meet someone that I like."
People respond really well to that response to that question- it is not too needy and it not too closed off either.
And contrary to popular belief, don't avoid other controversial conversations like politics.
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These can actually give you a chance to show your passions, the love guru stresses.
Even if the person does not share your opinion, this can be an example of negative attraction where they like your passion rather than the belief itself.
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