10 Dating Profile Mistakes to Avoid

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We all want to make a great first impression on dating apps, but it can be hard. With so many users, people want to stand out on the apps while still trying to be as natural and truthful in their answers as possible. They also have so little space to share who they are. Many people find themselves stuck and making classic yet detrimental dating app mistakes in their profiles.

But don’t worry; dating apps are designed to be user-friendly. You can always course-correct if you realize you’ve been making a mistake that might lead to some people swiping left on you. Today, we’ll cover the top ten dating profile mistakes you need to avoid when crafting your perfect profile and what to do instead.

Dating Profile Mistake #1 – Don’t Put What You’re Not Looking For

While this can be an easy way to weed out the people you know you won’t have a future with, taking the time to list everything you don’t want in a match can be seen as negative and rude. If you’re thinking of putting something along the lines of, ‘Don’t swipe right if you want a long-term relationship’ or, ‘No men who like fishing allowed,’ you’re limiting the number of matches you could get on the app.

You’re leaving people with a negative impression of you, and it could read that you think you’re better than others. Not to mention, if you close yourself off from a specific group of people, you might be missing a chance to find true love.

Instead, be careful who you swipe on. If you see people with characteristics you don’t like, you don’t have to swipe on them, and you won’t match.

You can also take the opposite route from the negative and list things you want to find. People are more likely to swipe on someone’s positive and hopeful profile than an exclusionary and pessimistic one.

Dating Profile Mistake #2 – Don’t be Too Generic

While we all want to match with someone with whom we share a fundamental connection, no one should be bored reading your dating app profile. I understand that it can be challenging to stand out from the crowd.

There’s absolutely no reason to put an insane amount of pressure on yourself to make the most exciting dating app profile in the history of mankind. Just try to avoid being too repetitive with your answers. If there’s something about you that sets you apart or even that some might find weird, add that!

The key to making a successful dating app profile is setting yourself apart from the crowd and adding elements or facts that make you memorable.

If you’re worried some of your answers are too generic, start going into detail with them. Instead of saying ‘I love music,’ say, ‘My Spotify Wrapped said my listening style is the adventurer, but I’m more of the folky-music-with-your-coffee kinda guy.’

If you love sports, talk about which ones, what teams, and if you’re more of a fan or a player. The more detail you go into, the more the person deciding on if they want to swipe on you or not can have to go off of when they start a conversation with you.

Dating Profile Mistake #3 – Don’t Put Down Dating Apps

I cannot tell you how many people’s profiles have something like ‘I don’t know why I’m on here’ or ‘Just here for a day because I’m bored.’ To be fair, I have downloaded multiple trying to find the right dating app, then got off of them once they quelled my boredom, but I never said that.

No matter what you feel about dating apps or if you believe your person is on the app, you shouldn’t lead with the negative. This is similar to our first tip, where if you only talk about the things you disagree with and don’t like, people won’t swipe right on you because they’ll see you as a negative human.

Also, if something like this is in your profile, you’re knocking something long before you’ve tried it, and you seem to have already given up. I personally wouldn’t swipe right on someone who didn’t take the app seriously and most people would agree with me.

It takes a level of trust and a bit of blind optimism to make it on dating apps, and if you’ve already decided and declared that the app won’t work for you, you don’t have either of those things.

All this to say, if you’re not the biggest fan of dating apps, you can tell some of your matches that. When my fiancé and I met, I told him I would delete the app pretty soon, so he got my number instead. It moved the process along and let me get off the apps. Maybe try something like that if you don’t want to keep swiping. 

Dating Profile Mistake #4 – Don’t Lie

This rule isn’t just applicable to online dating but in general… and life. Just don’t lie. While it’s tempting to say that you’re 6’1”, model, or from England, it’s more pain and effort to lie and keep up with the lie than to just tell the truth.

Also, if you’re planning on meeting any of your matches in person and you’ve lied about your appearance, that lie is going to come down really quickly.

Save yourself the trouble and be as open and honest about yourself and your appearance online. Odds are, you’ll find someone who loves you and wants to be with you, not the person you’re lying about.

You can also not answer all of the questions on your profile about your personal appearance. No one is forcing you to do that. If you’re self-conscious about something, leave it out! Odds are, no one is as focused on that one fact as you are, and it won’t be a big deal when they meet you.

Dating Profile Mistake #5 – Don’t Leave Your Profile Blank

Many things people will do in their dating profiles can reflect how they act on the app and in dating in general. If you are lazy or don’t care enough to fill out your profile, you might not want to be on dating apps.

Suppose you don’t care enough to take five minutes to fill out your profile. Why would anyone think you would care enough to message them back or begin a relationship on the app? Also, if no one knows who you are, what you like, or why you’re on the app, the odds of finding someone that matches you and what you want in a person are slim to none.

I have never swiped right on someone who didn’t at least have a little blurb about who they were and why I might be interested in them and I’m not the only one.

Dating apps are notorious for having scams, bots, or just nasty people on them. One of the ways people scan for that is to see if you’ve put something in your bio and if you’re not just a bot profile.

Take five minutes to fill out your profile. Be funny, goofy, original, thoughtful, or play two truths and a lie. Do something to add your own flare to your profile, and have fun with it!

Dating Profile Mistake #6 – Add Good, Quality Photos

Ah, the pictures. This step can often be the most difficult when crafting your profile because no one knows what photos to add. Yes, a posed and beautiful selfie is always a good one, but you also want to add some personality shots into the mix.

What you don’t want to do is add grainy, poor-quality pictures. Another thing you want to avoid doing is adding too many group shots, especially if you’re with people of the same gender; it’s really hard to see which one is actually you. Also, even though you love your dog, cat, horse, fish, or whatever animal you have, they should not be your profile picture. Save those pictures for the messages.

Instead, add a quality photo of yourself, maybe one or two of you doing your job or a hobby you love, and a personality picture. The more, the better in this case because then people will see you in all kinds of different situations.

And if one of your personality pictures is low quality, don’t feel like you can’t add that in, but also don’t make that your only picture.

Dating Profile Mistake #7 – Don’t Ignore the Dating App’s Rules

As someone who is banned on Tinder for the rest of her life, trust me on this one. First and foremost, if you want to get on a dating app to catfish or bully someone, maybe you need to rethink your priorities. You will get reported, blocked, and banned in seconds, and that’s not worth it.

Dating apps have more rules than you might think. Yes, the obvious ones need to be followed if you want to be a decent human being and make a lasting and healthy relationship.

But also, maybe don’t put your Venmo on and ask people for money if they match with you. I’ve heard it doesn’t help your bank account and might get you banned from Tinder forever.

You don’t have to become one with the rule book, but try to keep up to date with any policies to avoid any possible scandal that might come up.

Dating Profile Mistake #8 – Keep Updating Your Profile

I had a rule that I would have to update my dating profile every time I cut or dyed my hair. By the end of my time on the apps, I had a picture of every hairstyle.

You want to keep up with what you put on your profile so people can match with you knowing where you are currently, not where you were when you made the profile four years ago.

There are so many profiles that say something like,

‘The pictures are old, I don’t look like that anymore. Lol.’

If the pictures are old, update them. It takes five seconds.

Also, if you have a job change or graduate college, change that in your profile too because it might attract different people and matches.

You can also update what you’re looking for on the app as that changes. While you should stay away from listing the things you’re not looking for, you can say if you’re looking for something serious, a rebound, or just a person to flirt with. It’s good to be honest about where you are in life, and it will benefit you in the long run.

We’re not saying to make Tinder your personal diary and write a new post whenever you learn about yourself. Still, keeping your profile current and relevant might do you some good.

Dating Profile Mistake #9 – Don’t Mention or Allude to Any Exes

It’s so common to see guys on dating apps post a photo with their exes. A lot of the time, the caption for the image (or a description in their bio) will say, ‘That’s my ex, this is the only good photo I have of myself.’ Take another picture.

You should never lead with your ex, even if they were great and you’re just friends with you ex now and everything’s fine. Don’t talk about your ex on a platform designed to get you into a new relationship.

The ex talk is a necessary one to have, and we aren’t saying to avoid it forever, but when you’re starting a relationship on the app, more than likely, people don’t care about your ex, and they don’t want to see a picture of them either. Save the ex-talk for the second or third date when you’re really getting to know the person; don’t lead with your past.

Another reason you shouldn’t put a picture of your ex on your dating profile (other than common sense) is that people will immediately start to compare themselves. It’s a terrible habit, but a natural thing. Instead, skip the comparison game and just delete the photo.

If you just came off a breakup, you can say that, but save that for the messages or the first time you’re meeting someone. Everyone’s on the apps for their own personal reason, and it’s not bad if you’re getting over a breakup; it might not be what you want to put in your profile.

Dating Profile Mistake #10 – Have Fun With it

While a bit scary and a little stressful, dating apps are supposed to be fun. It’s like window shopping for true love with little to no strings attached! I loved going on dating apps and matching with all sorts of people looking for different things in life.

While there are some rules and suggestions you might want to follow in order to get the most success out of dating apps, the main thing you should prioritize is having fun.

There are some very not-fun parts about dating, and you’ll get to them. But in the butterfly, new beginnings, meeting on a dating app stage, it should all be fun times. If you’re not having fun or taking the dating apps a bit too seriously (been there, done that), then take a step back and think about what you really want out of these apps and if you can get it.

Using a dating app is like opening yourself up to a world of eligible and thrilling matches; enjoy it!

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