RIP: OKTrends, where nice guys and shirtless bros could turn to all-knowing infographics to learn lessons and know knowledge. Now that OKTrends is once-upon-a-time, I volunteer to step in as adviser for all of you 45-year old creepers out there looking to snag yourself a recent college graduate, alone and vulnerable because she just moved to your city and knows no one. Also for other types of Online Dater Dudez.
About two months ago I joined OKCupid. Mostly for shits and giggles and flattering messages, but also because it’s a practical thing to do. Because you can’t walk into a bar and tell everyone to get out except for “well-educated Jews between the ages of 23 and 29, who live in the more trendy parts of the greater Los Angeles area and enjoy all types of asian and middle eastern cuisine, please.”*
Like the rest of you online daterz, I get my fair share of messages from creepers. But every once in awhile I find a soulmate! Or at least someone who knows how to make himself look like a potensh soulmate.
Here’s the thing, bros, you (mostly) can’t change what you look like. But, as with any Internet identity, you can manipulate every other aspect of your OKCupid profile to make yourself seem like the dreamiest, steamiest, brilliant-est version of you that could feasibly exist. Thus increasing your percent-chance of scoring mad hot females to take to bed or dinner. The possibilities are endless.
I’m pretty much perfect, both in real life and on the Internet. As for the rest of you, below please find the top 5 ways to improve your OKCupid profile and/or make your Internet stalkers want to wife you up and have your babies.
1. Enough with the shirtless profile pictures, please.
Regardless of what OKTrends has (had) to say, keep your clothes on. Have you no sense of mystery? If I already know that you have washboard abs, where’s the fun in discovering them on our third date when you finally take me back to your couch for some TV and makeouts? And yes. I am a good girl, and therefore always wait for at least the third date to discover abdominal muscles. Except when there’s wine. Sometimes. Maybe. It’s not important.
Wine or no wine, six-pack or no six-pack, I may want to see your bod, but I don’t want to see how good you feel about your bod before I meet you in person.
Of course, one could argue that profile picture choice should be catered to what you’re looking for from OKCupid – hawt sex? Or a loving relaysh? Taking your shirt off is a not-so-subtle implication that you’re mostly there for hawt sex. Which is fine. But even if you are in it just for the booty callz, why not give off the impression that you’re a non-threatening, non-egomaniac with only the purest of intentions? All by keeping your clothes on.
2. Explain yourself. (But don’t reveal things to me that you should save for your therapist.)
PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT: there is a difference between answering questions publicly and privately on OKCupid. Since the site actually locks your answers (ie prevents you from re-answering questions for a certain number of days), be careful how much you reveal!
Like, maybe it’s better to discuss your masturbatory schedule after you meet someone in person, no? It’s really a whatever-floats-your-boat decision, but I personally DGAF how often you masturbate if I just met you and don’t even know if you take your Chicken Tikka Masala “spicy” or “medium” yet.
That being said, OKCupid has many stupid, stupid questions with ostensibly black and white answers. Also some with actual right answers. (Dear Plebeians: “wherefore” means “why” in Romeo & Juliet. You don’t get to have an opinion about that one.) For example, “How often do you brush your teeth?” UM HELLO. The only options are ONCE and TWICE per day. Well, say you do brush your teeth twice a day. Personally, I find that intimidating. Do you ever forget? Sometimes I forget. But you can’t answer that you only brush your teeth once a day because that’s a) less than your dentist recommended, and b) gross. Lucky for you, you can write, “Usually twice. However, I often forget on Friday and Saturday nights and go to bed looking like a vampire and/or human with lots of red wine on m’lips.
I want to know these things about you. Tell me about your nuances and I’ll think you’re cute.
3. Be funny.
One of the few OKCupid dates I actually ended up going on (I’m way more into trolling the site than finding my soulmate) was due to the first opening line of his profile, which reads, “I’m a straight up, phenomenally good guy.”
I thought that was hilarious. It also happened to be pretty true, so that was cool. But honestly, who writes that about themselves? A guy friend of mine was so impressed by this “comedic angle” that he made it the first line of his profile. And greatly increased his traffic. Remember, guys, it’s online dating, not saving the world. It’s okay to take things with a grain of salt, make jokes, or, if you’re bad at making jokes, have your friends make them for you! You can worry about your own sense of humor once you make it to the actual dating.
4. I would prefer not to hear about how deep/sensitive/nice/kind you are.
The Nice Guys of OKCupid tumblr did an excellent job of highlighting the problems of self-proclaimed Deep Sensitive Good Guy Syndrome when it comes to online dating. But since that tumblr has since been taken down – biggest Internet tragedy of 2013? – I felt the need to reiterate.
Not to mention, “nice” is like, the most boring adjective of all time. Google “Thesaurus” and I promise you can do better.
5. Spell check.
Do not misspell your favorite bands or TV shows. Or use phrases like “supposably” and “for all intensive purposes.” This is a general life rule, but it’s especially problematic on OKCupid. Also writing sentences and using lol at the end to make you seem like you don’t take yourself seriously, lol.
If you can’t even be bothered to proofread your profile, why in the world wide web should I believe you can be bothered to think of a cool idea for our dinner date? This is your online identity! Judgeability is inherent in its existence. And if women are going to judge you anyway, the least you can do is give ‘em something better than “The Beetles” and “When Hairy Met Sally” as basis for rejection. My personal taste would also suggest removing all emojis – even those used ironically – and any use of “idk” or “dunno” from your prose. And holy moley would you please use punctuation? This isn’t Twitter. There’s plenty of room for periods and commas.
If my advice does not work, please consider joining Coffee Meets Bagel or HowAboutWe, where the profile completion requirements are not as intimidating. Or try to meet someone in person. Best of luck!
*In case you were wondering about my type.
Grace DeVoll is currently working as an assistant on a TV show about superheroes, and sometimes confusing it with real life. When she isn't pretending she's Wonder Woman, she enjoys making lists, late night adventure-driving, and dressing up like a princess. You can follow her on twitter @offtothegraces, which would really make her day, or learn more about her here.
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