Dating apps have opened up a whole new world of potential partners, but sometimes it takes weeding through some connections to find the perfect match. That’s why keeping an eye out for online dating red flags is so important. It saves you time and helps you find love faster.
Of American online daters, 71 percent report that they believe that lying is prevalent on dating apps. But whether or not lying is as widespread as some believe, we can all agree that there are definitely some users who do embellish. Take a look at our top six online dating red flags to steer clear of anything but the real thing.
Pay Attention to These Online Dating Red Flags
1. They have a lot of “don’ts” but not a lot of positives in their profiles
Swiping through potential matches and come across a profile filled with strict rules dictating what they don’t want their partners to do? Maybe you should just move along.
Of course it’s ok to be vocal about your boundaries, but there is a big difference between having standards and being controlling. You have just connected with this person, your conversation should feel easy going and natural.
Entering romance with a checklist is an online dating red flag for someone with a negative point of view. Maybe they’ve been burned on dating apps before, but that doesn’t mean that they can then try to control you or any of their other dates.
2. They have nothing in their profile
While you don’t want someone who is all negative in their profile, you also don’t want to say yes to someone who has nothing in their profile either. Your profile is where you put your best foot forward.
Here, people should draw you in. Think of it like a business pitch: if a colleague put no effort into selling his idea, would they be successful? The answer is no.
People who don’t write anything in their profile are demonstrating a lackadaisical approach. We’re not saying their profile has to be perfect, but you should find it interesting. Here’s some advice on how to create a successful profile.
3. Pet names pop up in the first few messages
If you just met someone on a dating app and, only two messages after their introduction, they’re calling you “baby,” you’re looking at an online dating red flag right away.
While some people enjoy cute pet names, others find them patronizing. They’re terms that are best used once a couple becomes more comfortable with each other, and the person using the pet name feels confident that their partner enjoys hearing it.
But at such an early point in a courtship, the person using the name has no idea if the other person enjoys it — and they don’t really care. In this case, it’s a word of convenience. They can use it for any of their matches. You should concentrate on the connections who are interested in you.
4. They’re not smiling in any of their pictures
One of the biggest goals of dating app profiles is making yourself approachable. You want to have a description that is enticing, and opens the door to talking and connecting over mutual wants and interests.
You also want to include pictures that spark conversations. Ones that make someone who is looking at them to feel like they can comfortably talk to you.
Studies show that smiling actually makes a person look more attractive. If the profile you’re looking at doesn’t make you feel at ease, maybe mark it as a red flag.
5. Their photos and messages are overly sexual
There’s no shame in a little sexting, but that should come once you and your match have connected a bit. Ideally, it should even be after you’ve gone on a real date or two. If you match with someone and their first reaction is to send you explicit photos and messages, that’s a severe online dating red flag.
If you’re looking for a quick hookup, then maybe this is fine. But if you’re looking for something long-term and serious, consider moving forward with another match.
The bottom line is that you should always feel comfortable with the content you recieve. Remember, this introduction may be online, but it still says alot about their character. If someone sends you something that feels inappropriate, the likelihood is they aren’t “the one.”
6. They don’t want to meet in person and find reasons not to every time you ask
The goal of online dating is to take that online connection and turn it into a real life one, right? Well, not always. Unfortunately, there are some people that use dating apps just for fun and accumulate matches without ever wanting to take them into the real world.
If you’ve been talking to someone for a while, and they make up excuses every time you want to meet them face to face, you might want to cut your losses. Odds are they’re not there to find a long-term partner if they’re not willing to go on a real date.
Online dating doesn’t have to be a minefield. Sure, you’re going to get bad matches but that’s just reality. Bad dates happen in real life too. But the truth is that most people aren’t involved in online dating to play games, they’re searching for love. So pay attention to these online dating red flags and make searching for your other half a little bit easier.