Online Dating Advice, Dating Apps Tips: Bumble, Hinge; Online Dating Help, Men, Women; How To Use Dating Apps In A Healthy Way


As a dating consultant, I have helped out introverted men and successful women all over the country and beyond with online and offline dating struggles (check out my coverage in the NYTimes, WSJ). How to use dating apps is a rather simple thing. How to use them effectively is a completely different matter. Online dating help below along with blog posts and ways to get in touch with me.

There are many variables that contribute to success or failure, and it’s important to dissect each aspect of online dating from app choice to date ideas and conversations to see where you can ultimately improve the most.

Making a great dating profile is key, but there is more to dating apps beyond the profile including offline efforts, personality, writing skills, self-awareness, patience, timing, hobbies, smiles, wardrobe, location, app choice and more.

Below is an exhaustive list of online dating advice & dating app tips to help troubleshoot your dating efforts to make sure you can check off each item to help you on your way to getting more, better quality matches, screen profiles, read people and attract more of what you want.

Related read: Signs He’s Just Not That Into You

Related read: New To Online Dating, What To Expect From Dating Apps

How To Be Successful On Dating Apps: Online Dating Tips & Advice, Hinge, Bumble

Too many individuals focus on just one item whether it’s photos, app choices, messages, swipe strategy, prompts but in reality, one needs to dissect every component to have the most success which includes items before you even download an app.

Online dating is a numbers game where timing is crucial, but it’s more so about conveying who you are, what you are about and what you seek. Most people just randomly choose an app, put little thought into their photos and start swiping away. 

Smiles, education, location, lifestyle choices (smoking, drinking, religion, politics), height, appearance, wardrobe, profession, hobbies, interests and first impressions are important. Failing to address all these items will put you at a disadvantage.

Related read: Common Mistakes Guys Make On Dating Apps


New To Online Dating Apps, How To Approach Dating Apps 

Dating apps can be brutal. It’s not uncommon for people to never get matches while others get bombarded with unwanted messages and creepy matches.

Online dating requires thick skin, patience, self-awareness and realistic expectations. Dating apps are highly competitive and can take a toll on confidence, self-esteem and mental health.

Be sure you are in a good place before even considering downloading dating apps as there are many people on dating apps looking to scam others, get validation / seek attention or looking for a casual hookup.

Knowing how to ID red flags in dating profiles, photos, bios and communication is a tremendous skill to have not just with dating apps.

Despite the name, online dating is a misnomer. They should be viewed more like introduction apps. You meet online, communicate interest, exchange messages, confirm attraction and then go on dates offline.

Just as one should not apply to jobs without the proper experience or credentials nor should someone attend a black tie event without understanding dress attire and etiquette, one should not hastily jump into online dating without being aware of the ups and downs associated with dating apps.

Related read: Online Dating Addiction Signs


Hobbies, Interests & Life Experience (Online Dating Guide)

In real life, people take in various queues when analyzing you: your posture, voice, smiles, communication skills, wardrobe, scent, smile, context, etc. In dating profiles, some of these factors are not as visible and as such, physical appearance is the first thing people have to evaluate in dating profiles.

It’s important to realize that if your personality seems to carry you in life, dating apps might be doing you a disservice.

Eating well, exercising and taking care of your skin will go a long way to improving your approachability, attractiveness and first impressions. Like a resume, would you submit a half-way decent application to your dream job?

Many people are too quick to join dating apps and self-sabotage their efforts as new users get a boost upon profile creation. Dating apps are a bit more shallow than offline introductions, so be sure you are confident in your appearance and health before downloading those apps.

Most of the work required to be successful with dating apps happens offline.

Having friends, partaking in activities, exploring hobbies, expanding your comfort zone with travel and exploration, building financial stability and having enough life experience to draw upon in  bios, prompts, opening lines and conversations.

If you are a boring person who doesn’t have much to offer or talk about, dating apps won’t help you. Dating apps won’t work miracles for you.

Related read: Online Dating Tips

Online Dating Coaching For Men, Women

Help w/ swiping, timing, app choice, messages, filters, deal-breakers, paid features, screening profiles, reading people, ID'ing red flags/liars/time-wasters, date planning, & using dating apps more effectively & efficiently.


Dipping Your Toes In The Water: Tips For Online Dating Success

It’s natural to be curious what dating apps are about and see what kind of people are on these platforms, but it should be noted that your new profile is generally boosted to others on the app within seconds of creation.

As such, putting a poor, lazy profile generally creates a bad first impression on a sizeable portion of profiles that you may never encounter again. In order to use dating apps effectively, you can’t just dabble with app, you need to come out strong.

As with most things in life, if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right. Don’t create a dating profile until you are mentally, socially and physically ready and have the photos and writing skills to highlight your strengths to people immediately. If you don’t have hobbies, interests, you will have a hard time being interesting. 

Unlike offline or traditional dating, you cannot reset first impressions but going into a new bar. Chances are you profile has been shown to people you are very much interested in but failed to put in the effort to show your intent and individuality.

Related readDating In Silicon Valley | Seattle | Austin  | Los Angeles  | NYC


Dating App Comparison (Tinder vs Hinge vs Bumble); How To Do Better Online Dating

Not all dating apps are the same. Some apps have better male to female ratios than others. A few dating apps verify profiles with some 3rd party data sources. Some apps make it easier for bots and scammers to create profiles on their platforms.

Some dating apps like Tinder have more people looking for something casual than something serious while dating apps like Hinge, Bumble and Coffee Meets Bagel tend to have more dating and relationship based intents.

Most dating apps cater to more mainstream personality types while OkCupid favors more alternative lifestyles and personalities.

Don’t expect dating apps to screen people perfectly. Similarly, its possible apps like Tinder are the only game in town and might be your best bet for finding a relationship. Don’t be surprised if there are creeps or guys looking for hookups on apps like Bumble, Hinge, The League or Coffee Meets Bagel.

When it comes to free vs paid dating apps, paid doesn’t mean better. People have different intents, deal-breakers, intentions and experiences based on their demographics and personalities. Sometimes you have to try and see what works for you vs taking the advice of others.

Most women use 1-2 apps while it’s not uncommon for guys to use 2-4 apps with hookup profile on Tinder and a profile for serious relationships on Bumble, Hinge or CMB.


Dating Profile Photo Choice: Best Photos For Dating Apps – Tips For Dating Apps

Regardless of what you are like in real life, photos will make or break you. The old adage is particularly true with dating apps “You attract who you are, not what you seek.”

If you are unable to marketing yourself accurately and in a flattering manner, it will be difficult to attract the right person.

Decisions are made within a matter of seconds of most dating apps and thus you will likely be judged by your worst photo “You are only as attractive as your worst photo.”

Be sure to have photos that are consistent in age and appearance – too much deviation can suggest catfishing or instability in your life. Selfies can signal a boring lifestyle or lack of friends.

Four to six photos are recommended, and they should be relaxed, candid, natural and show a variety of poses, angles, lighting, outfits, facial expressions, activities and impressions.

Professional photos are not needed and often come off as trying to hard and possible fake as a result of photoshopping, filters or other artificial means.

Self-deprecating photos are great and photos showing passions, some vulnerability or how you spend your time can separate you from others.


Bumble Dating Profile Photo Tips, Advice: Dating App Tips, Online Dating Tips 

Bumble Photos Tips

Bumble Photos Tips For Men, Women


Online Dating Tips: Posture, Smiles, Wardrobes In Dating Profiles – Dating App Strategy

Taking a good technical photo in terms of lighting, clarity and activities is a good start but details matter.

Poses, smiles and outfits help to reveal who you are and what you might be like in real life. Not everyone is photogenic so practice those smiles (smiles are hard to come by in profiles and are a big reason why people swipe left).

Articles of clothing can signal lifestyle, education, style and how you spend your time. Showing a range of environments and style can signal versatility and interesting lifestyle while hoodies and t-shirts can lead to stereotypes about maturity.

A team logo, travel shirt, local brewery, or sophisticated look can be enough to inspire conversation starters that are hard to come by.

Related read: Online Dating Advice


Dating Profile Bios, Captions, About Me, Prompts (Hinge, Bumble, Tinder & More)

Photos are the single most important component of a dating profile but the little things in the profile are what separates you from others. Showing thought, effort and enthusiasm help to showcase how serious you are about dating and meeting the right person.

It takes seconds to upload photos but much more time to write out a thoughtful profile, captions for photos and answers to questions and prompts.


Bumble Bio Tip, About Me Section

Bumble Bio Tip For Men, Women, About Me Section


The written part of your profile also helps out matches and people you are interested in with opening lines.

At best, blank bios typically result in boring introductory messages or crude, generic opening lines.

At worst, blank profiles signal scammers, bots, people seeking followers on social media, those not interested in anything serious or those that are a waste of time.


Online Dating Advice: Use Your Real Name, Verify Your Profile – Online Dating Tips & Advice 

There are too many scammers on dating sites. Stick with mainstream apps and avoid sketchy ones. If the app offers it, verify your account with them. Many people will use this filter on dating apps to avoid people that they think are fake profiles.

If you can’t be bothered to quickly verify a profile on Bumble, how serious are you about dating? What are you trying to hide? Unverified profiles always raise an eyebrow.


Dating Online Tips: Swipe Strategy: Swipes, Likes & Comments On Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel

Each dating app has a different way to communicate interest to others. Some allow a swipe left or right while others allow comments to be sent as well. Likes mean nothing.

Some people swipe right on all profiles and then focus on the matches they are most interested in or most likely to hookup with (they view people as commodities).

While some conventional wisdom suggests swiping at the busiest times of the day, I recommend swiping at reasonable off-peak hours. Not too late that signals you have no social life, not too early that suggests you don’t value work but at times when you are likely to avoid the stiffest competition. 

Read: Why You Should Never Superswipe on Bumble Nor SuperLike On Tinder


Hinge Comments vs Likes Only: Should You Comment On Hinge? Hinge Dating App Advice

Hinge First Line, Opening Message

Coffee Meets Bagel Comments vs Likes Only

CMB Messaging vs Likes


Online Dating Tips For Men: Dating App First Messages, Opening Lines

First messages will make or break you. Sounding too cute or lazy with simple openers like Hi, Hey or Heyy will get you nowhere (exception to all rules of online dating is if you are hot enough). This is particularly true if you are trying to get through to someone who gets a lot of attention.

Being more thoughtful helps but not if you are commenting on the same profile or prompt everyone else is. Think strategically, don’t go for the obvious opening. Find a way to build a connection with your match.

Opening lines get repetitive and boring so finding a way to be different, charming, enthusiastic and interested helps quite a bit. Make sure your lines show that you have read the profile.

Read: Biggest Mistakes Guys Make On Dating Sites


Online Dating Etiquette: Responsiveness, Timing & How To Date Online Successfully

If you manage to pull off a successful first line that yields a response, congratulations. Not all matches signal interest and even a response doesn’t guarantee attraction let alone a date. It’s important to maintain chemistry and momentum to allow for a smooth conversation and banter.

Etiquette suggests responding to matches that evening or next morning at the latest. Remember you are not in a silo, you are competing with other matches.

It’s also important to keep a good balance of initiating messages, asking questions and advancing depth of conversations. Too often people drift into the pen-pal zone forever.

Responding quickly every so often is not a bad thing as usually the person initiating conversation has signaled they are free to chat. Waiting too long and the moment might fade or someone else has caught their attention.

Related read: Online Dating Green Flags


Online Dating Tips: Online Dating First Dates; How To Do Better On Dating Apps

First dates are crucial as most people don’t make it to a send date with others. Picking a good date spot is key.

Understanding interests, availability, noise levels, movement and activities are key to planning a first date. You definitely want to avoid meals if you hardly know each other as they can be stiff and awkward looking into each other’s eyes for 90-120 minutes.

Drinks, coffee or a light walk with snacks or dessert are a good, safe bet as they allow you to extend the date if things are going well. Seats at the bar can provide great opportunity to people watch, talk about others, engage in conversation with your bartender or server and break up the stiffness in a booth or table setting.

Even if a first date goes great, you need to signal a second date is of interest and something you are thinking about.

Signaling a second date idea is a good way to gauge interest but you need to follow that up with somewhat concrete plans when you part ways. “I had a great time with you (insert name), I would to see you again next week if you are available. I was thinking (insert date idea) – how does that sound?”

Keeping things short and sweet but sincere is key. Make eye contact, don’t hide enthusiasm and don’t be afraid to mess up. You have to learn not to give a f*ck and just go for it sometimes.

That is not to say you should treat your date poorly or not give them attention but rather, stop thinking what if and decide what you want and make it know to that other person.

No one wants to be an afterthought or second fiddle. Everyone wants to feel wanted.


Learning How To Identify Red Flags, Avoid Creeps & Time-Wasters

This is arguably the most difficult aspect of online dating to master and conquer. There are master manipulators on dating apps that target the most vulnerable people on dates sites (those that are divorced, widowed, single parents, have self-esteem issues or are likely to have little experience with dating in general).

Identifying red flags in profiles, photos, captions, first lines and conversations is straight-forward but many people overlook obvious signs because of loneliness, attractiveness of said individual or making excuses for said match.

It helps to get independent advice from individuals who have experience with online dating as many friends and family members are either biased and unwilling to be brutally honest with you or they themselves don’t have much experience with dating apps.

Those that do have experience, likely have different circumstances that resulted in differed outcomes (physique, location, age, looks, financial stability, good mental health or don’t have as high as standards as you).

If you are the one always starting messages, initiating dates or carry conversations, it’s likely that person is not that into you. Learning to take things slow and not assuming too much by the words people say, way they make you feel or having sex early on is key to protecting yourself from getting hurt.

Online dating is not like ordering food from food delivery apps, it’s more so another means to meet people outside of your normal routine, schedule and everyday life.

Don’t assume you know someone because you have their profile or you have gone on a few great dates. Love can’t be rushed. Enjoy the process.


Dating App Premium Subscriptions (Hinge Preferred, Bumble Premium, Tinder Gold etc.)

Despite what you might think, you do not need to pay for dating apps to stand out nor be successful. Dating app premium features are like paid ads. They might help a little if you have a great product to promote. Most people don’t.

There is a much better ROI with dating apps if you focus on your smiles, photos, bios, prompts, app choice, education, wardrobe, poses and general approachability.


Dating App Tips: Which Dating Site Is Best For Serious Relationships?

The apps I recommend most to clients are Hinge, Bumble, CMB, Match, OkC, The League and sometimes Tinder. There is no correct answer. It’s up to you to know what the demographics are for each app, have realistic expectations, and know how to read people and screen profiles.

Each app requires patience, self-awareness, realistic expectations, ability to be less picky and a strong ability to read people, screen profiles, be vulnerable and of course have strong profiles, communication skills and emotional IQ.


How To Spot A Good Man On A Dating Site, How To Find Love On Dating Apps

It takes time, patience, self-awareness, luck and effort. It starts off with a great profile and signaling the right things (does it suggest you are wife/relationship material or just a fun date). Making the first move is key as great guys are in high demand.

Analyzing photos, communication skills, effort, enthusiasm and etiquette are key. It’s a soft skill many people lack, especially if they are too technical or analytical.

Knowing how to ID red flags is important. Many manipulators are smooth talkers and tell you what you want to hear. You shouldn’t overly invest yourself in strangers, nor pre-qualify guys based on a resume-like profile.

It takes time to learn about someone and know how the behave in various scenarios. You can’t rush this, unfortunately. It’s one of the biggest mistakes women make on dating sites. Dating apps are not ordering apps.


Dating Coach Services - Men & Women

First date ideas, wardrobe, places to meet singles, body language, conversation/social skills, grooming, hygiene, hobbies, lifestyle choices, reducing biases, weeding out time-wasters and more. As seen in the NYT, Bumble.

What Is The Success Rate Of Online Dating? What Dating App Has The Highest Success Rate?

Online dating success rates vary but they are not good. This is mostly due to self-sabotage, wrong app choice, lack of realistic expectations, swiping too much, lack of decent photos, poor writing skills, not knowing your audience, lack of smiles or lying on profiles.

If you address all these items, you can significantly increase your rate of online dating success on dating to help find a relationship. Just because most people meet on dating apps these days doesn’t mean everyone is having luck or is putting themselves in a position to succeed.

When I work with clients, I take in all the demographic, lifestyle and other personality info to recommend apps that cater to them. There is no one universal best app out there. It’s about optimizing the tools based on your factors.


How Long Should You Give Online Dating? How Long Should You Spend On Dating Apps?

It’s not a matter or time bur rather focus, priority. You can’t dabble with it. If you struggle, get help from someone who knows what they are doing.

While it’s better to get help from others, strangers rather than biased friends, people on the internet can provide biased information (different intentions, ages, lifestyles etc). It’s important to know you audience.

I recommend 20-30 minutes a day, 3-4 days a week. Conversations can take more time to think about as will planning dates.


How To Make Online Dating More Interesting, How To Make Online Dating More Fun?

Be patient, don’t overly invest yourself in a stranger, don’t pre-qualify people or put them on a pedestal too quickly and date others rather than putting all your eggs in one basket.

Go on fun dates (places you have always wanted to try out but never had the chance to). Go on dates with people are you excited about rather than indifferent about.

Get to know people, be curious and ask questions. Don’t view early dates through the lens of is this the one but rather, do I want to spend time to learn about this person some more and do they have the same priorities and values as me?

Don’t text too much before dates. Meet up sooner than later. Learn to make mistakes and be embarrassed rather than play it cool. 

Don’t internalize rejection. The other person might have been seeing someone else. The other person might not be in the right place of mind to date with intention.

Be glad rejection happens as you didn’t waste time. Don’t go on back to back dates. Be present on dates. Don’t make excuses for others. Don’t hope someone will change for you.


How To Date Yourself: Love Yourself, Be Emotionally Available & Ready To Date

Before you can expect to have success on dating apps, you have to be ready to date. That means you have to make dating a priority and make time for dates. It also means you have to respect yourself, love yourself, and be in a good place mentally or at least be on your way there.

Being negative, jaded, pessimistic or assuming dates will go bad will lead to bad dates.

You have to be enthusiastic, be vulnerable, be yourself and make a sincere effort. You have to have enough life experience to draw from and talk about.

Being a hermit can make dating impossible. Always work on improving yourself offline and online. Having realistic expectations, being patient, being self-aware is crucial. Without this effort, mindset and follow-through, dating will be brutal.

Read: Dating Yourself


How Long Should You Be On Dating Apps? Dating App Fatigue, Online Dating Burnout

That depends on your effort, dates and realistic expectations. If after a few months you are not getting likes or matches, you might want to get feedback on your effort, messages, photos, writing, messages, facial expressions, app choice, lifestyle choices etc. The best online dating strategy is to get help with your efforts as people and their friends and family are biased.

Read more here.


How To Go About Online Dating Effectively, How To Use Dating Apps In A Healthy Way

-Don’t rush things

-Limit usage to about 3-4 times a week, 20 minutes a day (more if you match, plan dates)

-Don’t pre-qualify people too quickly

-Be open

-Be honest

-Don’t focus on the superficial

-Always work on yourself

-Don’t overly invest yourself into apps, develop hobbies, explore interests, make friends, eat well, exercise and don’t ignore the other important things in your life

-Don’t ignore non-app methods to meet people

-Don’t rely on others to make you happy, can’t be happy with someone if you are not happy alone


TLDR: How Do You Succeed On A Dating App, Do Dating Apps Work? Online Dating Tips

There are a number of ways you can self-sabotage your profile. Every mistake you make reduces the dateable pool and turns away people whom you otherwise might have had a chance with.

First impressions are everything, so be patient and methodical with your urge to create profiles, swipe voraciously and play it safe with boring, cliche lines.

There are no hacks, no shortcuts if you want to do well. Hiring a professional photographer to take modeling-esque photos is a bad idea. Less than 5% of photographers are able to capture effective, natural dating photos.

Similarly, hiring a ghostwriter to write your profile is also not effective as most copy and paste making your profile and messages sound like everyone else’s.

People need to prioritize dating like the do jobs, financial literacy, exercise, eating well and not exert the least amount of time possible via swiping on an app.

Success requires self-awareness, help, timing, focus, prioritization and optimizing yourself offline and online. Dating is not something you can flip the switch on like with other parts of your life. Things like personality matter a lot.

Dating is unpredictable and requires a bit of luck and if you wait to long, try to hack your way through it or rush the process thus removing all romance, courting and getting to know people, you will likely have many struggles.

While some people can meet the loves of their lives in a matter of days or weeks, that is not the norm, not by a long-shot.


Dating Profile Critique, Review Services

App Choice, Photo Critique (Order, Captions), Bios, Prompts; Wardrobe, Hobbies, Grooming  Recommendations, Body Language, Facial Expressions, Lifestyle Choices (Men & Women).

FAQ’s:  Tinder  |  | OkCupid  |  Hinge  |  Bumble  |  Coffee Meets Bagel  |  The League


How To Be Successful On Bumble: Bumble Profile Tips, Advice, How Do I Get Better At Bumble, Bumble Tips

Bumble Bio Tips – Bumble Bio Tips For Men, Women

Bumble FAQ’s – Bumble Frequently Asked Questions

Bumble Openers, First Messages – Bumble Opening Messages

Bumble Profile Tips (How To Do Better On Bumble)

Read: No Success On Dating Apps (No Likes, No Matches) – How To Do Better On Dating Apps


How To Be Successful On Hinge: Hinge Profile Tips, Advice, How Do I Get Better At Hinge, Hinge Tips

Hinge App FAQ’s – Hinge Dating App Frequently Asked Questions

Hinge Etiquette Conversations – Hinge Conversation Etiquette

Hinge Questions, Answers To Prompts – Hinge Prompt Tips

Hinge Profile Tips (How To Do Better On Hinge)


Online Dating Tips For Women; Dating App Advice Women, Online Dating Help For Women

Mistakes Women Make On Dating Sites – Biggest Mistakes Girls Make On Dating Apps

He’s Just Not That Into You – Signs He Is Just Not That Into You

Online Dating Red Flags – Dating App Warning Signs


Online Dating Tips For Men; Online Dating Help For Guys, Dating App Tips For Men

Mistakes Guys Make On Dating Apps – Biggest Mistakes Guys Make Online Dating

Worst Dating Photo Examples – Worst Online Dating Profile Photos

Harsh Reality Of Online Dating – Harsh Reality Of Dating Apps (Men, Women)


About Eddie Hernandez

Eddie is a dating coach for men & women in San Francisco (clients in NYC, LA, Chicago, & beyond ), as seen in the NYT & Bumble). He helps w/ profiles, photos, wardrobe, messaging, date ideas, red flags, lifestyle choices, hobbies, grooming/hygiene, communication, social skills & offline efforts.