For some of us, the online dating profile feels like the rubrik’s cube of romance. Unlock the mystery with these simple Do’s and Don’ts for profile success.
Online dating can be so much fun, but filling out online dating profile descriptions and selecting the perfect photos often feel like an absolute chore. Ever found yourself staring at that big, blank box for half an hour not knowing how to “Describe Yourself,” or wondering why people are not responding to your pictures?
You are not alone!
Consider being on the other side of the less-than-full profile, though—whenever you come across someone else’s profile with a meager few low-quality photos and a description that basically says “I’m not very good at talking about myself, I think the best way to find out whether we hit it off is to meet in person,” were you jumping up and down at the prospect of connecting with this person? Or were you more likely to give a hard pass because their profile communicated that they just couldn’t be bothered to make the effort?
The truth is, our online profile should be treated like an elite artist’s portfolio—one that lets our true personality and creativity shine through, from the description to the pictures; one that shows the best and truest version of ourselves, that draws the audience in to want to learn more.
If you’ve ever come across a profile that’s fun, engaging, and entertaining, you know the jolt of excitement you get. You’ve found an online representation of a real-life person who resonates on a deeper level for you. The good news? You can have one of those profiles, too, with a just few key tips.
How to make your true personality shine in your profile description:
The biggest secret to standing out with your profile online is to avoid listing adjectives, activities, or repeating what everyone else on the site is saying. Instead, express your true personality through unique stories that are special to you.
[DON’T say]: “I like to go out, but I also like to stay in” or “I like taking long walks on the beach,” or a long list of adjectives like kind, well-educated, artsy…(if you still have these words in your profile, by all means, first step is to delete them!)
[DO say]: If you’d like to convey that you are “kind,” tell a story about how you once waited for three hours for the animal shelter to open so you could take in a stray dog you found on your morning run at the park. Or, if you’d like to convey that you are “artsy,” tell a story about how you built a cardboard house for your nephew’s birthday party that made him so happy he cried.
Of course, these stories have to be TRUE, but can you see how they are so much better than “I’m kind” “I’m artsy” “I like long walks on the beach” generic comments? It’s personable, it’s memorable, it’s entertaining, and you are already establishing a connection with the person reading your story.
Another important (so important!) and underutilized tip is to be sure you’re providing full, detailed explanations and descriptions in the various parts of your profile. One word answers are a no-go in any section. The minimalist thing might look good visually, but it doesn’t provide an onlooker the depth of character they need if they’re ever going to align with your vibe.
[DON’T SAY]: “Nope,” “Ask me,” “Yes,” or any other single word or short phrase response—these are not considered to be a complete answer.
[DO SAY]: Do take the time to explain, in detail, at least one thing that is particularly special in your life. For instance, instead of saying “family” in a field about what’s important to you, try something like “I come from an extremely close-knit family that lives within 20 minutes of each other. On the weekends, I love spending time with my nieces (ages 4 and 7). They’re hilarious and sweet and make me excited about the prospect of having children of my own some day.”
See the difference here? Your potential date wants details about who you are and what makes you unique—how else are they going to know if you’re compatible? Mentioning your amazing family and your desire to have children at some point makes it crystal clear that these are priorities in your life. If these values don’t align with their personal goals and values, they’ll know to move on and you’ll both be better for it.
How to make your true personality shine in your profile pictures:
You don’t have to have glamour shots, but don’t be stingy about getting professional photos taken to show your best self!
[DON’T post]: bathroom topless (actually, stay out of the bathroom completely for photos), bikini selfies, or other inappropriate pictures
[DO post]: high-resolution pictures, include at least one clear headshot as your primary photo, one full-body shot, and one social shot (so people know you have friends)
Best pictures for women: Show yourself doing something you love (maybe you just perfected a yoga pose or you just completed knitting an amazing sweater); and as a general rule, make sure you’re smiling in at least one picture.
Best pictures for men: grab an animal or your nephew/niece, do something adventurous, and look away from the camera in some shots (somehow, when done right, this works really well for men); and just like my advice for the women, be sure there is at least one shot of you showing a SMILE.
About the Author
Keira Peng is the Founder of WeLove, a premium Love and Lifestyle coaching service that helps singles find love with better online profiles, better interactions, better real life dates, and better relationships. She’s helped thousands of singles improve their dating life and find their dream partners.