Sure, you've got the perfect shade of lipstick and the little black dress…but is that all you need? Hardly.
1. A fabulous photo of yourself
We all have that photo: The
one where your smile, hair, and (let's be honest) bod all come together
in one sexy little package, whether it's that snapshot from your hike
in the Grand Canyon or that cocktail party photo where you're dressed
to kill. Post that sucker at eye level on your fridge so your male
guest can't help but notice it as he checks out if you have beer (see
item #5). What he says: "Is that you?" What he means: "Daa-aamn, girl,
you're hotter than I realized!" Keep a digital version handy so you can
email it to online suitors or blind dates who want a glimpse of the
goods beforehand. And never, ever throw it away—when you're
80-something it'll serve as an instant reminder that back in the day,
you were a total dish!
2. A pretty pair of heels
Admit it. You feel like Maria from West Side Story
(You feel pretty, oh so pretty…) when you slip on a pair of nice heels.
The good news is that these days, you can transform virtually any
outfit to make it on-the-town ready by adding heels to a skirt, jeans,
cropped khakis, whatever. And no, they don't have to be towering
stilettos, even a pair of 1-inch kitten heels will make you stride a
little more confidently. (Added bonus: The taller you are, the more
cute men you'll be able to see around the room.)
3. An Eminem CD
What's one of the first places a guy peruses
when he walks into a woman's home? Her music collection. Good for you
if you have an extensive one. But if all he sees is a stack of girl
bands (say, the Indigo Girls, the Go-Go's, Joni Mitchell and the Bridget Jones' Diary
soundtrack), he's going to panic. Balance out your collection with one
CD, any CD, by Eminem and you have no idea how relieved he'll be. It
shows you have an open mind and aren't easily offended—and that's music
to any man's ears.
4. A great pickup line…and a way to blow 'em off
In this post-chivalrous period, we can't always depend on guys to
initiate contact, so prepare thyself with one simple, non-cheesy
icebreaker to lay on that cutie who's making his way to your area of
the bar. Our favorite: "Hi. Having fun?" (Though a friend of mine has
recently taken to asking well-dressed men, "Hetero, homo or metro?")
And in cases when a guy initiates contact and you're not interested,
better have a better blow-off than "Ummmm, no…" Our suggestion: "Sorry,
I don't think the guy I'm seeing would appreciate it." Sure, it's a
lie, but it'll let him down easy—without destroying his ego or making
him think you're a jerk.
5. A six-pack of good bottled beer
A prepared single girl is
ready to host and toast at any time. If you want to make a guy-guest
feel at home and your girlfriends feel special, skip the mass-produced
swill and go for microbrews like the exotically-named Smuttynose Shoals
Pale Ale from Portsmouth, New Hampshire or the grandfather of
microbrews, Sam Adams Boston Lager.
6. Bathroom reading
What man doesn't appreciate finding
interesting reading in his sweetie's bathroom? So instead of tossing
out your magazines when you're done reading them, toss them into a
basket by the toilet. No need to go overboard with a stack of Sports Illustrated (if you don't follow sports, that would just be weird), but consider Newsweek or even Cosmopolitan
(hey, this may be the only time he's a captive audience and can learn a
few things). Or, just buy a book that's made for the bathroom, like
Schott's Original Miscellany by Ben Schott ($10.17 at amazon.com) so he can learn a few things about shoelace lengths and sign language while he passes the, uh, time.
7. A business card
After the age of 18, it's no longer cute
to scrawl your first name and phone number on a napkin and hand it to a
man who wants to call you. So if your job doesn't provide a card or
you'd prefer one with your personal email address and phone number on
it, then have some made at your local Kinko's. The very budget-bound
can get 250 full-color business cards for free from vistaprint.com if
you don't mind the company's logo on the backside of the card. Hey,
it's better than nothing. A napkin he can lose. A card he'll file and
Ah, there's nothing sweeter than a man who wants
to cuddle up with you in bed for a long night's sleep.
Unless—SNZZGGHGHRRJJZZZ!—he snores so loudly you can't get any sleep.
Prepare thyself for surprise snorers with a pair of earplugs stashed in
your nightstand. (2 pairs of Mack's brand self-described "snore-proof"
plugs sell for $2.79 at cvs.com.)
9. A straight male friend on your speed-dial
Every girl knows she needs a gay male friend she can go to for fashion advice (a personal Queer Eye for Your Closet).
But when it comes to relationship advice, you need another source.
While your female friends may have good intentions, if you really want
to know if you should call that guy, save the guesswork and go to
someone who's been there, done that.
10. A condom
Hey ladies, you know the drill by now. If you
want to be able to have spontaneous fun of the bodily kind, you have to
prepare for it yourself. You can't always count on him to have
something in his back pocket—or a 24-hour drugstore on the route home.
(Your new mantra: If you don't want it to break, you buy it.)