There’s a drought. It can happen to anyone, but hard times have put you in your feels: The thirst is real.
Let’s assume your photos aren’t a series of dick pics (because we would find you) and your bio isn’t a string of brain-teasing emojis, but you still find yourself matchless. For many of us, matches are a lot like money in your early 20s — when it rains, it pours. One week you’re makin’ it rain like Wayne, and the next week you’re filling out an actual withdrawal form to take out your last seven dollars.
I’m a huge fan of the “It’s not me, it’s everyone else” school of thought, but when it comes to online dating, it’s helpful to identify what aspects of your profile may be off-putting, or dare I say, annoying. These matchless times are a true opportunity for growth and self-awareness. Sure, you’re also going to learn what parts you aren’t willing to change for anyone. You may decide you just don’t give that many fucks — and that’s real talk. Any changes you make to your profile are yours and yours alone to make. Don’t sacrifice a bathroom selfie if that shot in front of a “Scarface” poster speaks to who you are.
Still, if you want your Tinder game to be fully hydrated, you’ve got some homework to do — you shan’t be thirsty no more. Massage your ego with compliments, and take notes.
1. There’s an empty space where your bio should be.
Unless you’ve got status like Obama and are making moves like Ja covering his tracks after Fyre Fest, there’s no excuse for not filling out your bio. No bio means no effort. And while there are plenty of people who are willing to risk having nothing in common to give you the Swipe RightTM you deserve, the empty bio creates an additional roadblock: There’s no icebreaker for your potential matches to use to message you. Help your matches help you by filling it out. P.S. “Just signed up, will fill this out later” does not count.
2. You boldly state that you only use the Swipe Right™ feature for dogs.
Your eagerness to meet a dog is sus. We get it — anyone with a soul loves a dog. It may be super cute when you’re geeking out over a puppy IRL, but in URL, your affection for dogs is overshadowing the real reason you’re here. Adopt a dog to satisfy your thirst for canine affection; just think of all the adorable doggie pics you can include in your profile. Plus, you’ll be able to replace “I only Liked you for your dog” with “How deep is your love for dogs?” which is both a question to prompt a message, and a quote from Dru Hill — R&B haters use Swipe Left™.
3. We want to see more of you.
We see you, but we also want to see you in a different light, literally. Take advantage of the nine photos you can upload, and follow this simple recipe for the perfect collage of pics: two parts solo shot, and equal parts group and action shots. Too much of one ingredient can throw off the balance of your unique flavor. Pro tip: The more pics, the more potential matches know you are who you say you are, making them way more likely to want to match up.
4. Your profile is too generic.
Generic terms can be tricky, and the most common examples are food, travel, and adventure. Let’s unpack this: Most people like to eat because of well, science, and rollerblading in Central Park is certainly an adventure, but so is a car wreck. Break it down for the folks in the back by getting specific with your love of food, and replace the word adventure with examples. Since everyone loves to travel, this is a great opportunity to prompt messages with your matches: “Has anyone backpacked in Laos before? Looking for tips and/or travel buddies.”
5. You’re hoarding likes.
If you Like your prospects only 1 percent of the time, you narrow your pool of potential matches. Try not to hoard Likes as if using them will affect your credit. You don’t have to shell them out like Bird shells out scooters, and you certainly don’t have to lower your standards. Try improving your standards instead. Write down what you’re looking for in a match, and keep it as a reminder the next time you’re hesitant to use Swipe Right™.
6. Your active lifestyle is intimidating.
You’ve described every single adventure you’ve been on and every workout class you attend. You know the importance of the bio — in the words of Journey, you’re halfway there. Though, much like Journey fans, you may be off-putting to anyone singing a different tune. While you’re doing your daily CrossFit at 5 a.m. and commuting to work via hang-glide, less than 3 percent of people are living as healthily as you. That means that a good portion of your potential matches consider walking to and from their car the key components of an active lifestyle, but it also means you’re unique. Don’t change a damn thing if your active lifestyle is part of your identity. But to seem more approachable, consider opening up about why you like to stay active or not giving everything away in your bio.
7. You’ve made highly specific demands that are also vague.
You want someone who has their life together, someone who’s drama-free, plus, it would be great if they were well-traveled and “cultured.” There’s a fine line between stating what you want and sounding like you know who you want (e.g. the opposite of your ex or that barista who got away a few years ago). Stay open to possibility. Remember, drama isn’t always planned or schemed, and I doubt you would be annoyed if your S.O. had a family crisis beyond their control. Having your life together could mean being happy with who you are or having your first million — it’s totally subjective. You’ve got well over 400 characters to soften your demands into something your potential matches can connect with.