You’ve been waiting all night; it’s now or never. “Should we have one more drink, at my place?” You almost can’t believe it, but she actually accepts.
But within minutes of stepping foot in the door, she suddenly remembers Jupiter is in retrograde, she left her cat in the microwave, and she has to leave immediately because… Brexit!
She is out of there quicker than Novak Djokovic at the US Open. What do you expect when your apartment freaked her out?
Your living space is our window into your soul
There comes a time in every relationship when a man decides “it’s time, I need to sleep with her,” and a woman decides, “it’s time, I need to see how he lives.” And we say a humble prayer that you don’t live in squalor.
If we like you, we will inevitably want to spend a lot of time with you, more specifically at your place. And we use your living space to determine our compatibility.
- Do our tastes and interests overlap?
- Are you conscientious enough to not live in filth?
- Have you made any effort to host us?
- How does your space make us feel?
- Could we envision ourselves spending a lot of time there?
The psychological effects of decor, colour, lighting, furniture and space on our subconscious cannot be understated. They play a major role in influencing our emotion, mood and energy, at all times. If you want to brush up on the basics, this is a great place to start.
You might be surprised to hear it, despite recent findings, but we’re not just sniffing around your place for hints of your successes.
But we are searching for clues. This is what we’re looking to find, and desperately hoping to avoid as we enter your place for the first time.
Before we get into the granular details, know that we’re not complete monsters. We do have a tolerance for a light mess, such as clutter and variable hygiene levels in shared zones of the place. But we have zero patience for dirt, crusty dishes in a flooded sink, overflowing bins, and soaking wet hand towels with unidentifiable stains. If you live with roommates, pour your effort into your private zones. A general rule for all spaces, shared or not, is to encourage shoes off at the door. It’s a very quick win that gives us the illusion that you care straight off the bat.
Our sense of smell is likely more in tune than yours, so please be mindful when you’re considering how you want your place to smell. At the very least, a consistent stream of fresh air is the best way to go, so get into the habit of airing out the pad whenever possible. If you need a quick fix after work or right before a date night, opt for a candle over supermarket brand air fresheners. A scented candle is great because it can double as both mood lighting and decor to be permanently displayed. Avoid adding aftershave into the mix. We love to smell it on you, not on top of whatever you just did in the bathroom.
A room by room break down
This is where we go to either freshen up upon arrival or to plan our exit strategy if your living room is a serious shitshow. A clean bathroom might just be the thing to save you from spending the night alone. Tissues, toilet paper and hot water are non-negotiable. And keep in mind, your hair should be nowhere other than connected to your body. We appreciate you shaved for the occasion, and bonus points if you have a nice looking kit on display, but we don’t want to see the aftermath.
- (1) Hand Towels
Fluffy, clean, fresh and dry hand towels should be ready and waiting. Bonus points if we have a choice of varying sizes, folded neatly, in matching or tonal colour palettes. Darker towels are preferred so we can remove our make-up fearlessly.
- (2) Hand Soap
A guest bathroom should have a soap dispenser and not a bar soap. Every man, woman and child are flogging the Aesop horse to death, so if you want to make a real impression with some other boujee-looking bottles at varying price points you can opt for: The Grown Alchemist, Malin+Goetz, Le Labo, Essential Kit, Swisse and Dr. Bronner and Thankyou for you fellas trying to the win the hearts of a conscious consumer.
A glimpse into the kitchen should feel like the last dress rehearsal of Hamilton before it debuts on opening night. I.e. If we spend the night, we’ll be in for a show the next morning. Have a fruit bowl, breakfast condiments, cookbooks, a bottle of San Pellegrino or two and snacky foods on display. It should be at a standard of cleanliness we feel comfortable with to refill our water glass without encountering anything too sinister in the sink.
- (3) Coffee Machine
Whether we require an on the spot caffeine hit to kick us into gear before, or as a treat the morning after, if it looks like you take pride in your morning brew we might be keen to stick around for one. This goes for any other quality appliances you’ve invested in and make a ritual of. A beautiful wine rack can always stand its ground in or near the kitchen, too.
- (4) Glassware
Whatever you offer us, make sure it is served up in the appropriate glassware. James Bond never drank a martini out of a mug. And ensure that your bar and fridge is adequately stocked, so you can flex without the embarrassment of missing basic ingredients. The same goes for tea. If it’s on offer, make sure you have a teaspoon, sugar and milk to back it up.
The Living Room
Posters containing supermodels, superheroes, or fast cars be gone! Demerit points for anything not covered by glass, curling at the edges and blue tacked to your wall. While it’s difficult to articulate exactly what should be on display, we will note down the genres or themes on offer. Everything should have sentimental meaning to you, so if necessary, you can justify its presence.
- (5) Books
“If you go home with somebody, and they don’t have books, don’t fuck ’em!” John Waters.
This is tricky if you’re a Kindle/Audible convert like me and have a noticeable gap between your bookshelf from year 12 English until now. But regardless of the abundance or lack of a few meaty page-turners, everyone can elevate their brand with a selection of coffee table books. And don’t just plant things around your place because they look good, you should be able to use everything as a talking point.
- (6) Framed Art
We’ve all been to IKEA at least once in our lives. So, we know you just grabbed that print of the New York City skyline in the marketplace maze before checkout. If you’re looking for affordable art, look no further.
- (7) Photos
If you have actually printed out photos in the last ten years and doubled down on your efforts by framing them – bravo! Especially if unique travel pics or nice family shots dominate your space. No ex-girlfriends allowed.
- (8) One living organism
It proves to us you can sustain life. Greenery is a wonderful addition to any space. For the novices, try a small pot of Basil or a difficult to kill succulent. Bonus points for a living and breathing animal. But even though she may have swiped on your profile specifically for your pet, it doesn’t mean she wants it, or its fur, on or around her. Get out a Dyson on the regular.
If you haven’t set up your room to look like the most inviting, irresistible drool-worthy space of them all, don’t pass go, and definitely don’t collect $200. Dirty laundry must be hidden, as well as any porn, or your tissues and moisturiser combo. Not because we actually care, but because we think you’re a fucking idiot for leaving the evidence behind. If we cutesily ask to borrow something to wear; we want your shirt, and definitely not some article of clothing another girl left behind.
- (9) Quality Linen
Your bed should be impeccably made. Your sheets should be clean, hole-free, preferably linen, and the duvet an appropriate and consistent thickness. No lumps and bumps. Two pillows each – and, if you’ve got a queen bed, consider opting for a king-sized quilt for maximum coverage and to avoid a blanket tug-of-war.
- (10) Bed base and frame
If you have a mattress on the floor, I’d just walk straight out the door. “Even if it’s just casual?” Yes. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. We will gladly partake in one-off or regular fun, only if your place is welcoming to us. It’s not a sure thing just because you’ve gotten us in the door. If your place isn’t up to scratch, we will downgrade the extent of our forecasted fun together.
To be honest, this is the only thing that matters
We know the pristine state of tidiness is probably a one-off. And we promise not to spoil it by opening any cupboards to an avalanche of contraband.
But the truth is; the colour scheme, the furniture, the Feng Shui… all of it can be changed, except for this – how you make us feel when we’re at your home with you. We don’t want to feel like a part of the furniture. We want you to take pride in your home, but we also want to feel like you’re proud to be hosting us in it.
If you donate, upgrade or burn any of the offending items above, you might find you’re not just making room for new things in your place, you’re making room for us, too.