What Assumptions Do People Make When They See Selfies On Dating Profiles? Are Selfies Socially Acceptable On Tinder, Hinge & Bumble? Only Selfies On Dating Profiles.

 Despite the growing trends of selfie sticks, selfies, camera phones and the like, many people don’t have great or decent photos for their dating profile. Many people struggle with taking photos, don’t have that many friends or don’t have people around them that take photos. There is nothing wrong with living a minimal digital life except when it comes to online dating.

Dating apps require photos in order for people to create a profile, obtain matches and hopefully go on dates. The best type of photos to use on a dating profile are those that show people in good lighting and show a range of photos that include close-ups, full-body, activity and location based scenery. It’s rather hard to get this range of photos using selfies only.


Are Selfies Bad For Dating Apps (Tinder, Bumble & Hinge)? Are Selfies Unflattering?

For the most part, selfies are rather unflattering. For one, they are taken at close proximity and don’t allow for enough space between the subject and the camera. Why is this an issue? Photos taken at a close distance are generally distorted (appear wider) than they would at a further distance. This can make faces appear bigger, which is typically not desired. This is worst for those with short arms and take selfies, as the images are even more distorted.

The other reason why selfies are not recommended for dating profiles is that they often fail to contain enough conversation starters or background information to inspire conversations. They are typically too close to contain information about where one is and what they are doing. The other reason why selfies are unflattering is that most people don’t know where to look. They often appear looking off to the side just slightly rather than directly at the camera.


Best Selfie Angles, Flattering Selfie Angles – Why Do People Take Selfies From High Angles?

In theory, the most flattering (slimming) angles for selfies are those that are taken from high angles. These angles provide a slimming effect and force the subject to stretch out. This is also why people use selfie sticks from the same angles. Unfortunately, most people know this and a few people try to deceive others about their true appearance.

Photos from high angles give people pause about the authenticity of said dating profile. Does the person appear like they do in their photos? Is the person trying to deceive others about their appearance? Are they trying to hide their bellies or slim their waistline? These are legitimate questions that run through people’s minds and are enough to cause them to swipe left on profiles. The worst thing one can do for their self-confidence is to show up on a date only to be ditched immediately for lying about their looks.


What Do Selfies Signal? What Do Your Selfie Photos Suggest?

A selfie in of itself doesn’t suggest much but several selfies in a dating profiles can suggest one of many things including lack of friends, lack of outgoing personality, insecurity with others taking photos of you or unwillingness to show you and your full body. On the more extreme side, selfies can suggest a strong narcissistic personality which is also not flattering. Selfies with duck faces or trying too hard convey vanity.


How Many Selfies Should You Have On Dating Profiles? 

Ideally one should have zero selfies with a dating profile but if selfies are all you have, then limit selfies to 1 photo, 2 max if you have 4 other photos of yourself. The number of selfies is only one piece of the puzzle. They have to be good selfies and great conversation starters. Selfies taken against a generic wall, in your hallway or in a mirror don’t add value nor context. Recommended selfies should be rather epic.


Best Selfies For Dating Profiles – How To Take Good Selfies For Bumble, Hinge & Tinder

The best selfies are the ones that are great conversation starters. Typically travel destination, photos with celebs or selfies taken outdoors in beautiful places and backgrounds are the best. Occasional self-deprecating humor can be pulled off it’s harder to do so with the limited space between the camera and the subject. Good selfies are more so about the background and location rather than just the person so having space is highly recommended.


Bumble Photo Rules – Banned Photos (Bumble Shirtless Mirror Selfies) 

Bumble is perhaps the only app that has somewhat strict rules and guidelines around what photos can be used. Although virtually all apps ban nudity and the like, Bumble goes a step further to ban all bikini and shirtless mirror selfies taken indoors from their platform. 


Should Women Use Selfies On Dating Apps?

Women can use almost any photos and they will get some attention on dating apps but what kind of attention is another story. Some guys specifically target women with profiles full of selfies for scamming purposes (thought here is that they are more lonely or less self-confident).


Worst Type Of Selfies To Use On Dating Sites (10 Photos Not To Post For Online Dating)

-Shirtless mirror selfies

-Selfies in bed

-Gym selfies

-Bathroom selfies

-Duckface selfies

-Fitting room selfies

-Car selfies (inside the car)

-Car selfies (next to the car)

-Pet selfie (especially with their tongue in your mouth)

-Attention selfie (the one that has no context other than look at me!)

-Airplane selfie

-Museum of Ice Cream selfie

-Color Factory selfie

-Snapchat filtered selfies


Selfitis: What Psychologists Say About Selfitis

Attention-seeking behavior can be signs of narcissism and psychopathy. Addiction to selfies can lead to mental illness. Browsing one’s Instagram profile is a great way to screen for selfitis.


How Do You Take Online Dating Selfies

If you must use them, make sure they are epic. Amazing view, fun location, quirky venue etc. Extend your arm, don’t raise your arm to high to avoid obviously making yourself appear slimmer. Use even lighting, smile and try look at the camera to avoid looking cross-eyed or tipsy.


Professional Headshots For Dating Profiles?

On the other extreme, professional headshots should not be used for dating profiles. Photos are often blurred out and cropped to closely for any good conversation starters to be visible. Secondly, they are likely to be viewed as being filtered or photoshopped as most photographers use this technique. Go ahead and look up your friends profile photos on Linkedin in and chances are they don’t look like themselves (unless of course I took their photo).


How To Take Your Own Dating Profile Photos (Tinder, Hinge & Bumble)

Read this: How to take dating profile photos on your own.


Personalized Online Dating Profile Critique

Strategy (App Choice + Timing + First Messages), Photo Critique, Bios + Prompts + Photo Captions, Wardrobe Feedback, Body Language, Smiles & More

About Eddie Hernandez

Eddie Hernandez is a dating consultant & professional photographer based in San Francisco, servicing clients in New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago and beyond as featured in the NYTimes, SFGate, ABC7News, East Bay Express, Salon; contributor to Good Men Project, Plenty Of Fish and Meddle.

In addition to photos, he provides guidance around app choice, bio optimization, messaging techniques, wardrobe advice, date planning, screening profiles, ID'ing red flags, offline techniques for meeting people organically, naturally. 

Dating App FAQ's  |  Online Dating Resource Guide  |  How To Be Successful With Dating Apps

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