There are millions of dating profiles on the web, spread across countless dating sites. Many of them seem as diverse as they could be. But in reality, there’s a pattern to the madness. Certain hobbies, certain interests, certain aspects of personality and appearance… There are trends in how both men and women view these things and which ones rise to the top. Wired did the research and crunched the data on profiles from OKCupid and Match, and based on their findings, here are some tips to help you fashion a dating profile most likely to appeal to others.
1. Outdoor hobbies matter (some more than others). Wired found that upper middle class sports drew interest, while sports like basketball and kickball didn’t fare so well. Among men, the top three outdoor activities were surfing, yoga and skiing (in that order), while for women, the top three were yoga, surfing and running (also in that order). So the bottom line is, learn to surf.
2. Get to know the right shows and movies. For attractiveness, men scored highest when they mentioned watching “Homeland” and “Arrested Development,” while women scored best for “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind” and “Pulp Fiction.” Women plummeted in the ratings for talking about liking “Twilight” or “Star Trek,” and men dropped like rocks for “Doctor Who” and “NCIS.”
3. Money talks, but age walks (at least for women). When it comes to work-related words that pop up in profiles, the most attractive word for women to read in a man’s profile is “retirement.” But if a woman puts that same word in her own profile, it drops to the second-least attractive word. Men don’t like thinking of women aging, we guess.
4. Smile with teeth – no duckface! The photos rated the hottest on dating profiles featured a majority of pics with people smiling open-lipped. On the flipside, only 6% of the hottest pics had duckface kissy lips in them.
5. Does music matter? Apparently so. For both men and women, the best band you could mention on your profile is the same: Radiohead.
6. Watch the mention of religion. Religion can be a deal-breaker for many people, so while you many want to put it all out there (and you should certainly be honest about your beliefs), the word “God” makes your profile less attractive. That said, of all the people willing to date outside their faith, Mormon men are the most likely to do it.
7. Log in at the right time to get the most activity. On many of the main dating sites (Grindr, Tinder, OKCupid, Match), there’s a big spike of activity on Sundays. Also, Grindr users tend to be online in the midafternoon, while Tinder and Match/OKCupid are on into the evening hours. So get online on Sunday if you want the best chance of chatting with someone in real-time.
8. Want sex? Know what most people want. Sex is important in most relationships, but how long do you wait to have it with someone new, and how often once you start? OKCupid did a poll, and they found that most users of all genders and sexual orientations wanted to wait 3-5 dates before getting busy with a new partner. After that, the most popular choice for how often to have sex was 3-4 times per week. Obviously, everyone is different, so don’t assume your new love interest has the same sexual timeline as you: Communicate!