How to avoid the Air Kiss Dilemma…

Air Kiss greetings are just the WORST! I can grab a hand and shake it, high five, hug or even fist bump, but I just can not fathom air kisses! The reason being because I can never successfully pull it off! EVER! There are so many unwritten rules, each of them different to every culture and it’s enough to want me to stop greeting people altogether!

I am writing this post because yesterday whilst I was undergoing this seemingly simplistic social act, I happened to get my lipstick all over a stranger’s cheek. Not Cool. ( I then battled with myself about whether I should tell the lady that she has my lipstick smudged across her cheeks, but that’s a different story!)

So here is a Step by Step guide for Air-Kiss Gestures, so that you do not make the mistakes that I do (again and again!)…

Step 1: As you approach the person, focus on which way they begin to shift or lean because that is the side of the cheek they will kiss first. There are far too many times where me and another lady have been caught in a limbo of trying to air kiss on the same cheek, and almost going for a smooch right in the middle! Highly Awkward!!

Step 2: Anticipate how many times they will give you an air kiss. Their culture or country of origin is usually the best indicator. (If you simply have no idea, then you are screwed and might as well brace yourself for the awkwardness to follow.) In some parts of the world, its one kiss on either side, right and then left. In others, its right, left and right again. My experience with Emirati ladies is by far the most confusing. For them it’s a right, left and then right, right, right, right…(depending on how much you like the person- the more, the merrier!)

Step 3: Do not actually kiss the cheek! An air kiss is just that, kissing the AIR rather than any part of the face! (Having said that, I have witnessed Middle Eastern men that greet each other with kissing of the cheeks, so following this step may not be wise either.)

Step 4: Make the right sound. This is key to a successful air kiss. For some, no sound must be made, whilst for others there is a soft mwah sound as the cheeks embrace. There is also another type of air kiss that must be delivered with a very loud but quick smacking kiss sound that originates from almost pursing your lips like a puffer fish in quick succession. (Yes, the first time I encountered this, I was baffled!) I have found that the louder the kiss, the more amiable you are.

Step 5: Semi-hug the person as you deliver your air kisses and part away with a smile, having successfully deciphered the conundrum of Air Kissing.

Step 6: Repeat the process again for the next in line, and do not expect it to be the same as the previous encounter. The second person could be hiding another unknown air kissing ritual up their sleeve, ready to create another awkward meeting.

Perhaps this step by step guide will save you from an awkward encounter, or perhaps it will make the social gesture even worse and more confusing.

Perhaps I am not really the right person to be writing a guide on this matter at all and you should probably forget all that you just read…

Till next time.. *Mwah -lipstick smudge – forehead bash- trip over and fall*

What has been your most awkward encounter? Can you successfully pull off an air kiss? I would love to know your thoughts, so feel free to comment below! 



33 thoughts on “How to avoid the Air Kiss Dilemma…

  1. This is great! I have always suffered from socially awkward air kisses. Now I just kind of push my cheek against the other persons…making it more awkward. May as just embrace the awkwardness, as I was not made from air kissing. #thelist

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  2. This is certainly Not something I enjoy doing! lol. I like my personal space. When i lived in New Zealand I found it difficult to do Hongi. This is a Maori custom where you press nose and foreheads together… I am part Maori but I could never get used to it lol. Angela

    Angela recently posted ” Awards and Nominations”

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    • Haha yes I did infact apologise and notify her that my lipstick is smudged across her cheek and even went as far as try to wipe it off, before I realised that I was probably invading her space, and apologised again!! Haha! Superrrr awkward!

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  3. Thanks for this, I’ve never been able to fathom this air kiss tradition – neither a kiss, nor a hug. What’s the point?! I’m always one to get these social encounters wrong though 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Have never ever done one to be honest with you. It sounds very hard and awkward, so I will just stick with the high fives thanks. You should put a video up of you demonstrating an air kiss. That would be super funny. Make sure you put the awkward parts in there too :).


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  5. You are so right, they are just so awkward, why di we even bother?! I have the most awkward kisses with the in-law’s! I’m always like, do I do a big squeezy hug, do I do one kiss or two, arrrgh it’s just a nightmare! As for strangers, well, I just try to avoid that kind of thing haha! Great guide though, I might print it out so I can refer to it at the time of air kissing! Thanks so much for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: Blog Love: Five Blogs I Have Loved This Month (May 15) - Laura's Lovely Blog ♥

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