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The 8 Qualities Your Wingwoman Must Have

If you’re trying to meet a guy the old-fashioned way (read: not from behind your computer screen) but keep striking out, maybe it’s time to pair up in a different way. A wingwoman can help you hone in on potentials, will sidle up to Mr. Dark-Hair-and-Dimples when you’re feeling shy, and then give you the courage to share your number with him—all while adeptly yet politely turning away those who aren’t your type.

But you need to be just as picky when selecting your right-hand woman as you are when scoping out men. Look for these eight qualities to ID the perfect woman to help you find the perfect man.

She's Unavailable

While your wingwoman doesn’t have to be married, she should be in a healthy relationship, says matchmaker Talia Goldstein, co-founder of the dating site ThreeDayRule.com. Not only will her relationship status dissolve any hint of competition, she also knows what to look for in a guy. “She can easily identify the type of man that is supportive, kind, loyal—and who will adore you,” Goldstein says. So instead of winding up hurt after pursuing the hot guy who challenged you, she’ll guide you toward someone who’s prime long-term material.

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She's Not a Supermodel

Not to be catty, but leave your hottest friend at home when you’re on the prowl. As wonderful as she is, you don’t want to compete with her for attention—nor do you want to spend the evening comparing yourself to her and risk having wobbly self-esteem. Instead, pick a wingwoman who’s slightly less attractive than you are, Goldstein says. You want guys to give your girl the time of day—but have their eyes on you.

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She Knows You Well...Enough

It doesn’t matter if you’ve known your wingwoman since you were both in diapers or if you were introduced a few months ago. What’s important is that she knows enough about you to talk you up to your prospects and have some topics on hand that she is certain you’re comfortable discussing, Goldstein says.

She's Confident

Especially important if hot guys make you forget how to talk or if you have a hard time approaching others, your wingwoman should be a natural extrovert. She’s the type who knows how to work a room, striking up a conversation with anyone and chatting for as long as necessary to achieve her goals from the talk, even if that’s just learning if the broad-shouldered blue-eyed hunk at the other end of the bar is single.

She Keeps the Attention On You

A wingwoman has to strike the right balance, says Nick Soman, CEO and founder of LikeBright, a social matchmaking app. She needs to be fun and know how to charm men, but she can’t outshine you. Your girl will ensure the spotlight stays on you, effortlessly shifting the conversation back to you when necessary.

She Can Read a Guy and
a Situation

After picking out the studs from the duds, your wingwoman should be able to suss out a guy as you all chat, detecting whether he’s really interested in you or is just making polite small talk (or simply wants to get in your mini skirt). She’ll then stay so keenly attuned to the situation that she’ll be aware of when she’s become the third wheel, Sanom says, and leave you two alone to get to know each other better.

She's Got Your Back

A good wingwoman is like your dad when you first rode a bike without training wheels—she won’t let you fall. She’ll send you the signal to give a guy your number when you’re feeling unsure about your next move, chime in when it’s clear you’re feeling extra nervous, and take a step back when you’re on a roll.

She's Flexible

High-maintenance friends need not apply, Goldstein says. You want someone who’s easy-going, the type who’ll head to another bar and stay longer than anticipated without huffing and puffing about her early morning yoga class. You set the schedule for the evening so it’s as successful as possible, and she only speaks up if she senses it’s better to stay at your current location or that everyone has their beer goggles on and it’s time to call it a night.