Date Published: 22nd June 2016

Dating is an bit of a minefield, and online dating arguably even more so.  Luckily for those looking for love in the age of technology, researchers have come up with a list of dating do’s and dont’s for the modern online dater.

Do: Dress Well

Studies into the most desirable dress sense have found that women prefer men to dress in a suit jacket and skinny jeans, with almost 40% of women saying that blue was the most attractive colour a potential male suitor could wear.

Alternatively, men’s preferences on what they looked for in women online were somewhat simpler: wear gym clothes. So for ladies looking for love online, trading your jeans for some running leggings is likely to be a winner.

Personal stylist Chantelle Znideric emphasises the importance of presenting yourself well in your online dating profiles: “In the past, first impressions were made on the first date, whereas these days potential partners are making snap decisions with every swipe, based on two or three images.”

Don’t: Hide your hairline, or have a questionable ‘fro.

Many online daters tend to use certain poses to cover up certain perceived flaws. Researchers suggest abandoning this and embracing them instead, as people are likely to see right past the ploy and deduce what’s being hidden. For example, men wearing a hat in every photo or who cut their photos off at the forehead are pretty likely to be bald.

Hair styles are evidently an important factor for women using online dating apps, as research reported bad news for males sporting man-buns: these were a big no-no among female Tinder users. Author of “Tinder for Experts”, who goes by the pseudonym ‘White Panda’ tells users to optimise their flaws. If you’re balding, embrace it. And if you’re set on keeping the man-bun, embrace your niche market.

Don’t: Hide yourself

Tinder users reported that they tend to swipe left – that’s a ‘no thank-you’, to those not familiar with the app – to men with one photo or those whose photos were all group pictures, on the assumption the user was simply unattractive.

Most of us non-body-confident online daters are likely to try to make ourselves look slimmer in our dating profiles. However,  researchers warn not to go overboard with the slimming tactics. Tinder-user Daniel suggests avoiding a top-down camera angle, as these will suggest to potential matches that you are trying to disguise your weight.

Do: Have as many photos as possible

Tinder is a visual app, so researchers suggest using all of those six photos you’re allowed to showcase yourself. Having only a couple of photos arouses suspicion that you’re hiding something. That said, make sure you use your photos wisely. Tinder-user Ollie suggests ensuring all your photos are of a similar standard: “No-one wants to find the one, only to find they get progressively less attractive as you scroll through their pictures”.

Don’t: Come across too conceited

‘White Panda’ reports that selfies were deemed more appropriate for females than for males.  Research showed men were not particularly bothered about women having selfies on their profile, as long as all their photos weren’t self-taken. However, Tinder-user Katie states that selfies from males are a big no.

Do: Include your pets and your travels, to an extent

Having photos of your pets provides a good talking point, and may even increase your chances of getting a match in the first place. Tinder user Imi says that she is more likely to swipe right to a male with a cute pet, even if he’s not her usual type.

Travel photos will also give you something to talk about, but be wary of overdoing it. Tinder user Ollie warns online data users to avoid coming across too cliché, stating that “photos with sedated tigers don’t make your cultural” and would automatically result in a swipe left from him.

It’s a tough world out there in the online dating region of cyber space, but hopefully these tips will help.

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