I recently downloaded Tinder and Bumble. Partly because I promised to do a dating app review for the SHFT Attraction Tribe I’m currently in. See how I quickly used research as an excuse for me to use the app? This is because I’m embarrassed to say I’m on a dating app. And even though millions are using them and if you’re not, you’re the minority, it still has that stigma. It makes you feel that you’re desperate or can’t find someone in real life. But the truth is dating apps have become the standard. The days of meeting someone in the supermarket or a dinner party are long gone. They won’t notice you because they’ll be too busy swiping on their phones. What I just did, give you a reason why I am using the app, DO NOT do that. It’s not attractive. If you’re going to use the app, rock it. Use it proudly without any insecurity about it or don’t use it at all. You’ll just get frustrated with the result because like anything, if you’re pulling from fear or ambivalence, you’re not going to get what you want. The universe doesn’t help people who lack punch. Then you’ll feel shitty about yourself. I see many saying things like “I’m on this because a friend dared me…” or “I have no idea what I’m doing on this thing….” We all know what you’re doing on this thing. You’re trying to find love. Fucking own it. Okay, I guess that’s my tip #1 then.
Tip #2. Dating apps are like Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Too much in one sitting will make you sick.
Use small spoons. This means don’t swipe for hours. Today I counted how many swipes it took before I landed on someone I thought I was compatible with. 274! And I swear. No joke. I wasn’t being picky either. I was just looking for someone who caught my eye or worth starting a dialogue with. Two hundred and seventy four swipes! When you swipe 275 times, every swipe becomes a holy fuck! there’s no one out there. But you keep going because you have hope. But that hope leaks very fast with every swipe. Then when you finally stop because you have one percent of battery life and no more circulation in your finger, you put your phone down feel gross, like you’ve been watching porn all day. But with no happy ending.
So use it occasionally. Replace it with your reality TV time. Or if you’re waiting for your car to be washed. Use it as a reward for not smoking (use for the time it takes to smoke a cigarette). Basically, don’t schedule it into your daily structure. Swiping shouldn’t be up there with eating and sleeping. It’s a fun thing to do on the side. It’s entertainment. And if you find the love of your life on this thing, great. But don’t expect that or you won’t enjoy the process.
Tip #3. Don’t use the best pictures you’ve ever taken in your life.
Yes, you may get more matches but when you meet the person, wouldn’t you rather he be pleasantly surprised than secretly very disappointed? In America, this is called false advertising. It works very well. But not when it comes to dating. You’re only hurting yourself. The interaction on the app doesn’t matter. It’s the real life stuff that matters. Right? So use real pictures.
I played with the app last night with two of my female friends and learned a lot about what’s catches a woman’s eye.
- Easy up on the shirtless pics. If you’re ripped or have those v lines on your torso that makes women drool, great. One pic. And not the first one. If you’re hairy, leave your shirt on. It’s too much too soon.
- Hold puppies. Women love animal lovers. Men who love dogs mean something.
- Guitars score serious points. But only if you can actually play. Not as a prop.
- Real life adventure pics. But only if they portray an accurate picture of your life. If you’ve only gone camping one time in the last twenty years like me, four pics of you in the woods climbing rocks and jumping off cliffs wouldn’t be cool.
- No pics with you and other women, even if they’re your friends. It looks like you’re trying to say Look, I do have women in my life. And they love me.
- Get rid of the backwards baseball caps. It looks like you don’t have a job and you live with your parents.
- Write an actual bio and make sure it’s original and describes you accurately. Women read. If she approves your pics, your bio will be the make or break. She can think your pics look amazing but swipe left because your bio sucks. Or she can not be moved by your photos but something in your bio moves her and she’ll swipe right.
- Similarly, write an actual bio, give us a sense of who you are.
- Keep the duck lips to a minimum. I know it can become a habit but we’d rather see a smile.
- No group pics where we can’t tell which one is you. That is so frustrating and it feels like you’re going to be the person that always needs to go out with a group of people. You can’t be alone.
- No pics when you were a child. We don’t care.
- If you’re a model, no modeling pics. Keep that separate from this. You are not auditioning for a job.
- At least one full body pic, preferably doing an activity you love — hiking, camping, something you’re passionate about. If all the pics are a close up of your made up face, it’s hard to get a sense of your life, your interests.
Conclusion. I think dating apps can be a powerful tool. If you’re super busy and don’t have time to put yourself in social situations, they can be a great way to meet people. But the key word is “tool”. It’s a device, only one of many ways to meet people. It’s not the answer to your loneliness or finding the one. Small doses. Used for entertainment. Be serious on it but don’t take it or you seriously, if that makes sense. Be serious on it meaning be authentic and honest. Because there are many people on it serious about finding their one and it’s not cool to fuck with them or play games. But at the same time, it’s an app. So just have fun with it and don’t allow the engagement on it to crush you if you don’t get the amount of matches you expect. DO NOT use it as measuring tool for your attraction level because it’s not accurate in that way. Pictures and bios are only one dimensional. Who you truly are and what you can bring to the table in relationships can only be experienced in person. Not on an app. Know that.