If you want to impress a crowd with your cocktail-making skills, you have to realize it isn’t all about whipping up a great tasting drink; sometimes, presentation can be just as important (well, almost as important) as flavor. When a cocktail tastes good, but looks like a person with no arms made it, it just isn’t living up to its potential.

Not really creative? Don’t want to have to try too hard to make your cocktails look nice? We’d like to introduce you to salt and sugar-rimmed drink glasses.

Normally, if you were to add salt or sugar into a cocktail, it would dissolve and though some of the flavor would linger, it would not be as strong as if the sugar or salt had just touched your tongue. By rimming the glass, you are adding a better burst of flavor that also makes the cocktail look nicer.

Salt-rimmed margarita glasses are probably the most popular, but there are really so many different cocktails that can benefit from a rimmed glass. If you’re not sure which route to go, look at the general ingredients in the drink you’re planning to make. Is it more fruity or sweet? Go for the sugar rim. Is it made with an alcohol that has a little more of a “bite”? Go for the salt rim.

Bartenders, mixologists, and even eager amateurs have their own opinions on the best ways to rim a glass, so at the end of the day, it’s really a personal preference and whatever works best for you. However, here’s a pretty basic way for you to make your own salt or sugar-rimmed cocktails:

1) Grab two shallow plates that are at least the circumference of the rim of your cocktail glass.

2) The first plate is going to hold some type of liquid that you want to use as an adhesive. You could use simple syrup, honey, or some of the liquor that’s being used in the drink. It is also not uncommon to take a wedge of lemon, lime, or orange and rub it around the rim (in which case, you wouldn’t need the plate).

3) The second plate will hold the salt or sugar, depending on which one you decide to use. Remember, you can purchase sugar in all different colors, so if you want to be extra festive, find a color that matches your drink or the theme of the party.

4) Turn the glass upside down, and dip it into the liquid on the first plate. You just need to coat the rim of the glass.

5) Once the rim is coated, keep it upside down and immediately dip into the salt or sugar.

6) Turn the glass right-side up and it’s ready to go. If you have extra time, put the glasses in the freezer to help the rims set.

Have you ever done this before? If so, do you have any tips or tricks you want to share with people who are newbies to rimming glasses?