The Dating Game
How to Pick Your Online Dating Profile Picture
7 ways to not look like a loser
-Simone Grant, Sex, Lies and Dating in the City
I have (many, many) years experience as an online dater. And so what I’m telling you I’ve learned from personal experience. No man is going to read your profile unless he thinks you’re hot. Not even if you have a super cool user name and a great headline. It’s just not going to happen. Guys don’t work that way. Yes, if you have a profile up without any pics at all, you might get a tiny bit of traffic. A tiny bit. But not much. And depending on the site, maybe none at all.
So please don’t bother wasting your time writing a sassy little essay about yourself and what you’re looking for in a relationship until after you’ve figured out what pictures you’re going to use. No, I’m not joking. The pictures really are more important. Really.
With that in mind here’s a list of 7 things that every girl should know about online dating pictures before she hits that upload button:
1. You MUST use more than one picture. At least one should show your face in close- up. At least one other should be a picture that shows most if not all of your body, and not from 50 feet away.
2. Use recent pictures. Men want to know what you look like now, not two years ago (even if you looked better two years ago).
3. Think twice about using the pictures of you and your kids or your nieces and nephews. I hate to say it, but a lot of guys will be turned off by these.
4. Don’t use the bridesmaids pictures. Think about the potential image they may send (desperate to be a bride?).
5. It’s not a good idea to include a picture of yourself in a bathing suit (even if you have an amazing body) unless you’re seeking a strictly sexual relationship. You will get bombarded with messages from every sleazy guy online (heck, from every guy online). Subtle is better.
6. Try to make one of your photos an action shot; for example, a picture of you cooking or mixing a drink or playing cards (something relatively close-up). This gives guys something to comment on when they write to you: “what were you drinking,” “what were you cooking,” “did you have a good hand”… It may sound incredibly lame, but by doing this you’re actually making it easier for guys to contact you. You’re giving them an easy opening line.
7. There’s no need to show deep cleavage. If that’s the way you always dress, fine. But otherwise, put’em away. Give the push up bra a rest. You want to look like you, not your slutty sister.
One final word of advice: There’s no need to go crazy and pay someone for professional pictures. I’ve had at least a dozen guys tell me that’s a turn-off. If you don’t have any pictures that you think are suitable then invite a girlfriend over for dinner and have a picture taking party. Have fun with it!
Simone Grant is writer from NYC. She blogs daily at Sex, Lies and Dating in the City.