because where else would you go to meet new people? the tagline of 2021.

2021 is officially the year of dating applications. i guess if you were the creator of any such application, covid is what you will have to thank for the boom in business. having been a seasoned user, there are a number of things i tend to look out for when swiping.

firstly: the verified badge.

i typically go left on profiles without the blue check because, believe it or not, scammers have since taken to dating applications and obviously, catfishes are still a thing. if you are someone who is looking for genuine connections then this is one obvious method to help with the weeding process.

second thing i look out for: consistency in photographs.

what i mean by consistency here is whether or not it passes off as a real person. this one actually requires a bit of experience to get right but the general rule is if you have even the slightest doubt then, swipe left. you basically do not want to fall into the trap of a catfish.

next: profile quality.

if there has literally been zero effort to either write a couple of lines in the biography/About Me section or to even answer the basic questionnaire every application has (i.e. starsign, height, et cetera) then it is an automatic left swipe for me. i think that throwing up a handful of photographs and not saying anything at all is already indicative of a lot of negatives—it might not be an actual person, they might not want to actually build a connection and/or carry a conversation. it is way too vague and already not worth wasting time on, in my opinion.

finally: the selection of photographs.

now, i will admit: i am super fussy when it comes to this. i understand that as a general rule, men would probably have less of an arsenal of photographs compared to women. however, it really is not too difficult to wear something flattering, stand some place with really good (bright) light and take a photo. in fact, it literally takes two seconds since every cellphone these days comes in-built with a camera.

if the photograph is pixelated as fuck, there is no way in hell that it is recent. so, left. also, if it is blurred, i typically do not take my chances. if there are children in the photographs and no explicit notation that they are not offspring, i swipe left. (this also applies for if there are other women in the photographs.) and apparently, this is some universal "rule"—there needs to be at least one full-length photograph so the swiper will be able to gauge height and body type. primitive, no?

ironically, though, at this time of writing, i have completely written off dating applications. still, i hope that this post could be useful to anyone who might still be actively on the prowl so i am paying it forward. i used to think it was somewhat of an urban legend that only the truly undateable lurk on them but experience has since taught me that there is, quite unfortunately, a lot of truth to it. this is a pro-tip i will impart: jump on a video call as soon as you can as that will save you a lot of time if you are the sort who is pretty sure of what you want. a lot of things are easy to falsify on paper but not quite so "in real life." that is, if you have a good enough gauge when it comes to reading people and always, always, always ask all the hard questions. bonne chance!