In the ensuing days, I’ve spent more time than I’d like to admit down the Tinder rabbit hole, perusing the man-ventory and taking stock of the culture. And what I’ve learned, in the words of Jay-Z, is “That shit cray” (in a good way.) Still, I thought it best to provide a Public Service Announcement to the men of Tinder, for your sake and for the sake of all the females out there who may or may not be suffering from Swiping PTSD. Here goes…
Dear Dudes of Tinder,
Congratulations on completing the rigorous task of downloading a mobile app in your pursuit of some female companionship! How very gallant of you. I’m sure you’re having a blast, but just in case you’re finding that your courtships aren’t as fruitful as you’d like them to be, I thought I’d provide you with some do’s and don’ts to aid you in your search. Sorry to be a Negative Nelly, but let’s start with the Don’ts, shall we? Boys, kindly avoid these types of photos:
The Group Fake Out - Every shot has more dudes in it than the first string of a football team. Which one are you? Who of this group looks like a Doug? The fuck if I know.
Photo Disappointment - This is what results from group shots. It’s not a good idea to surround yourself with your hot friends, FYI. It just bums us out when we realize you’re not the one with the cute dimples, but the one rocking the Jeter fade.
Weaponry - I love shooting, too. But what part of seeming approachable to total strangers who are smaller than you involves a .38 or a .20 gauge? Confused.
Foreigners - Just curious, “Englishman in NYC,” Irish dude or ambiguously South American guy, is there anything other than soccer in your country? Nice jersey.
Cats - So many guys posing with cats! Why why why? Least sexy visual ever…unless it’s a jungle cat.
Wounds, gore or blood - I don’t get it, are you trying to pick up a triage nurse?
Profile shots of objects/landscapes instead of, like, you – You’ve just told us that there’s a strong likelihood that you may or may not be a total mutant. Thanks for the heads up!
Girlfriends, wedding rings - Seriously? Not interested in being a sister wife, sorry.
Visibly f**ked up - Just a thought here, but you might want to try to appear sober in at least one of your photos. Maybe?
Eating – nay, inhaling, food - Things I’ve never thought: “Damn, that guy looks really sexy destroying that Big Mac.” True story.
“Look At How Manly I Am” shots - Ironmans are badass, fine. Tough Mudders? Ever since your little sister and her friends started doing them, eh, not so much.
Excessive muscles and/or tattoos - Sends the same message as the above. Also, a surefire way to half your female prospects. Giant lats aren’t for everyone.
The Hot Girl Heram - Congrats. Being surrounded by 9′s showcases your extraordinary ability to… be in close physical proximity to attractive people. Impressive, bro.
Extreme landscapes (read: the desert, bottom of the ocean, atop a mountain or in front of one of the 7 Wonders of the World) – There’s a fine line between being adventurous, and being a one-man National Geographic. Your living room would’ve been fine.
The Peen - Dick pics, really? WTF is wrong with you people?
Selfies in your car, hotel room or (God help me) shirtless in the bathroom mirror - Do I even need to explain? Just. Stop.
I hope that helps clear things up a bit? Alright then. With regard to quotes, gentlemen, please avoid:
The “Don’t worry, I’ll tell people we met at Whole Foods, a book store, or fill in the blank location” joke - Wasn’t funny the first 5 times we read it! Also, what’s wrong with meeting people on Tinder anyway?
Philosophical bullshit - Thanks for that borrowed Nietsche quote. If I wanted to be enlightened, I’d have one of those black, framed Successories jawns on my desk.
Literary quotes - See above, and swap out Nietsche for Camus.
Being a Regulation Asshole - Saying, “Why does every girl I meet on here want to get married? Whatever, most of them are fatter in person anyway,” shockingly does not endear you to us. Crazy, I know.
But since Miss Wingman doesn’t love excessive finger wagging, here are some Do’s to serve as helpful tips to the slightly Tinder Challenged. Do:
Have more than 1 photo - Let’s face it, any 4 can get lucky and look like a 7 just once if the camera angle is just right. Prove it’s not a fluke. However…
Limit photos to 3 - More than that can work against you. As in, “Ooh, he was so close until I saw him in that deep V-neck tee and rosary necklace.” (Left swipe.)
Make your face actually visible - Because we’re not interested in the Here’s-what-I-look-like-as-seen-through-a-telescope-from-outerspace portrait. Sorry.
Add useful information - Like your (hopefully socially acceptable) height, and phrases like, “Not my kid.” Thanks for clearing that up, bro. Speaking of height…
Remember size matters - It sucks, I know, but if you’re vertically challenged, you’re in luck! We can’t tell until we meet you in person, when you’ll be in a solid position to win us over with your wit and charm anyway. You’re just not doing yourself any favors by standing next to two of your 6’3″ buddies (or, like, a petite chick) and tipping us off ahead of time.
Also remember, dudes of Tinder, this rule: Things that don’t automatically make us like you? Boat shots, saying you’re a “Princeton grad” and expensive cars. Especially if the car has “Maserati of Manhattan” stenciled on the side. But don’t sweat it! There’re plenty of possibilities to make a successful connection on Tinder. That’s where savvy messaging and a nice smile comes in handy.
In reality, no “About me” section is necessary, and frankly it sometimes works against you. When emailing, don’t be afraid to get to the “Let’s meet up” point quickly, since by swiping right we’ve basically already admitted that we’d entertain sleeping with you. Or at least, that we don’t find the idea to be abhorrent. Score! So go out there, have some fun with it, and find your next hot date (er, hookup. whatever.) Just don’t swipe left by accident.