How does someone like Miss Advised’s Julia Allison become a dating expert?
—Gemma Oliver, Radford, Va.
The 31-year-old relationship advisor, who has written for publications including Newsweek,New York Magazine, Cosmopolitan and Teen Vogue, actually began her career while in college as the dating columnist for the Georgetown University student paper.
“I did purchase perhaps every single dating self-help book on the market. They line my bookshelves,” says the Wilmette, Ill.-born TV personality. And while Allison majored in political science, she claims she spent the majority of her non-class time discussing dating and relationships, which she says completely changed her life.
“One of the things I discovered on Miss Advised is that it didn’t necessarily change them for the best,” she says. “It’s not like I didn’t figure out a lot of things but it’s not like I solved all my own issues.”
After Georgetown, Allison moved to New York, where she convinced an editor at amNewYork newspaper to run her weekly columns, which she wrote until spring 2007, when she began became a columnist for Time Out New York.
These days, Allison is a professional talking head with appearances on more than 1,000 TV shows. With all her experience, the one thing Allison says she did learn is how to be good at getting dates. Her advice?
“A lot of women don’t realize how closed down they are. They put on their sunglasses, they have their iPod in, they look at the ground, and they don’t smile. I do the opposite of that. I look men in the eyes, I smile at them, I’m warm and open and I screw it up later. Trust me, I totally screw it up later.”