Most individuals who create their first online dating profile don’t pay much attention to their pictures. But this is not OK.
Experts suggest that you use more than one profile photo to convey your personality, humour, attractiveness, and quirkiness.
Much can be said about the technicalities, but at heart, it is all about good quality and clear photos. A study conducted by the Datingroo comparison site for dating shows that while catchy photos boost your chances of finding potential matches, clicking the right picture is not that easy. The study contains insights from photographer Sophia Isabella.
Sophia (a professional dating photographer from Berlin) says that blurry photos are not just less engaging, they also indicate a lack of commitment and involvement. She says “sharp and bright photos are much more attractive, and also portray your personality clearly.”
Along with low-quality photos, online daters should also avoid old photos, cropped photos, and pictures with their ex’s (some people still do that). But how many photos should you use?
The study suggests that you should have at least 3. That is the sweet spot. Moreover, you should also consider changing the combination from time to time, depending on how well the profile is doing. 3-5 quality photos bring better results than entire albums of random and low-res pictures captured in bad lighting.
Objects and Activities
Dating profiles are also rife with people showing off their possessions, such as their homes, offices, and cars. But this doesn’t always work. Instead, you need to click photos that make you come across as unique and endearing.
But feel free to show off your hobbies, such as arts and crafts or dancing. Moreover, some possessions are part of your personality, such as sports or movies memorabilia. It’s fine to display them as well.
And don’t forget pets, because people love them! Especially if you’re a guy trying to attract women, pet pictures top the list.
Just make sure that the pet is yours and not borrowed for the photograph. Otherwise, prepare for a super-awkward first date! Women WILL ask you eventually about your pet that they saw on your profile.
Moving on, people also love to see activity on dating profiles. Several other studies on profile pictures have also shown that pictures showing activity create better engagement than posed ones online. So what kind of activities do your potential matches want to see?
Tinder is perhaps the most popular dating app, with more than 50 million users. And a mere scroll reveals that most users have profile pictures of their gyms, dance studios, beaches, or some other physical activity.
Another dating app, Bumble, also has thousands of users who are fishing, cheerleading, flying, and even protesting in their profile photos. “The bottom line is”, says Isabella, “that a picture in the moment looks relaxed and natural, and shows your authentic self. Avoid posed photos, unless you are a model”.
Get a Second Opinion
The majority of individuals don’t have a hard time telling if they look good in a photo or. However, choosing the right profile photos that features all the best facets of your personality is not the easiest judgement to make.
So if you want to look your best online, you need to watch out for three factors: attraction, trust, and competence.
Well, research shows that others are better at identifying these facets in your photos. None of us see ourselves as others do.
Part of the reason is that you’re so familiar with your own face, you miss out all the nuances that others easily point out.
To sum up, get a second opinion before uploading your profile picture.
Don’t Forget to Smile
Smiling when clicking photos is cliched advice, but one that must be repeated. Especially for men, who statistically have fewer smiling photos than women.
A smiling face is approachable and friendly, which is exactly how you want to come across. The perfect smile is when your cheeks are raised and there are wrinkles around your eyes. If you are in a bad mood or you didn’t get enough sleep the night before, don’t try to force a smile. People can spot a fake one from a mile away.
Own the Frame
Finally, take up as much physical space in the frame as possible. Owning the frame instantly makes you more attractive. You come across as both confident and someone who is willing to open up to others.
In other words, posture matters. Good posture is associated with confidence – and confidence is always sexy. People with good posture are perceived as more attractive, so follow your mom’s sage advice and sit up straight.
Sometimes tall people do a lot of hunching in photos to keep from towering over their friends. But to avoid looking sloppy and unconfident, Isabelle recommends spreading your legs instead of hunching your shoulders. The more you spread your legs while standing, the better you’ll line up with your friends. This trick can really come in handy for group shots that are taken from the waist up.
Not to mention, stretching out the limbs is known to increase attractiveness for both genders, men seemed to benefit more from this more than women. So if you want to make a statement, take up some space in your pics!
Experts also say that singles shouldn’t hesitate to ask for help with their pictures. Some users take this seriously and even take help from professional photographers. Of course, that’s not necessary, but it’s better to have a friend take some candid pictures instead of relying solely on mirror selfies. It is especially helpful for senior singles, who may not be so tech-savvy to understand the nuances of pixels, filters, and lighting.
These were some of the dos and don’ts of online dating profile pictures. But there are no rules here. Use a combination of pictures and keep updating them from time to time and see what works. Good luck!