Creating the perfect online dating profile is a bit of an art form. You want to present your best, but you also want to attract like-minded people—which requires authenticity. If you’re struggling with how to brand yourself as you look for love online, don’t stress. Here are some tips for putting your best foot forward so you can be swept off both of them.
1. Do Show Who You Are
A picture can be worth a thousand words, so try to choose images that show more about you than just what you look like. If you love hiking, for example, make sure you include at least one shot of you climbing a mountain or foraging for food after your backpack got stolen by that bear one time. It’s still perfectly acceptable to include the Best Selfie You’ve Ever Taken, but don’t saturate your profile with highly edited mirror pics at the expense of highlighting what you like doing.
2. Don’t Use Group Photos
You might look like a total ten in that picture from your best friend’s bachelorette party, but most people don’t want to spend time figuring out which person you are when trying to determine if they’re interested in you. Either crop out your friends (sorry, ladies!) or use a picture that’s just you. Ideally sans Snapchat puppy filter.
3. Do Be Open About Your Interests
LARPing may not be the most universally cool activity to be into, but it’s probably something worth mentioning in your dating profile if you can’t get through the week without your fellow Assassins’ Guild members. It’s fine to date people who aren’t into all the same things as you, but mentioning more niche interests in your profile increases the likelihood of finding people you can connect with.
4. Don’t Be Too Generic
Instead of trying to convey your fun-loving spirit with a cliché “live, laugh, love” tagline, why not show potential mates that you love laughing and living by including some witty banter or a picture of you donating your hair to Locks of Love? Most people are pretty big fans of having fun, so instead of simply stating that you’re one of them, explain what it is you consider fun—even if it’s LARPing.
5. Don’t Overshare
A certain degree of vulnerability is required when online dating, but there’s no reason to launch into the things your last boyfriend did to hurt you, even in veiled ways like, “Dated a lot of BOYS and now I’m looking for a MAN. Don’t contact me unless you’re ready to be emotionally available.” (Tom really was the worst, but you’re over him!) Keep things light and focused on you, not your exes or your strained relationship with your parents.
6. Do Be Safe
Not oversharing is even more important when it comes to your personal information, so be mindful. Don’t give away anything that might prove detrimental to your security, such as your address or pictures of your home’s exterior. It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to sharing these types of identifying information.
7. Do Proofread
It’s always worth checking your spelling and grammar when writing a dating profile, as it can be an instant turn-off for some. Because of the nature of online dating, people can afford to be selective, and a few typos could affect their view of you in a way that is not accurate—so don’t give them a reason to. You can still be conversational in your tone (nobody said emojis were banned!), but give your bio a read-through before you make it public. Spelling errors call into question your smarts, but they also can be a sign of an online scammer. Keep yourself safe when dating online and be cautious of people who use bad grammar.
8. Do Be Creative, If You Feel Like It
Ultimately, it’s up to you to inject your own personality into your profile. There aren’t any real “rules” beyond staying safe and trying to be genuine. With that in mind, it’s never a bad thing to be a little different and have some fun with your presentation of yourself, especially if you’re looking for someone as zany as you are. Consider jazzing up your photos with some humor or infusing some on-brand sarcasm into your bio. It may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it’ll attract people who “get” you and who you’re more likely to be compatible with.
However you decide to present yourself when online dating, remember that it should (and can) be fun. You might not find your soulmate online, but there’s no reason you can’t meet some cool new people and get some great stories to tell your friends.