A lot of stress can go into deciding on the perfect dating profile picture. Which look will catch the eye of a potential match? There are a lot of myths out there of what to do and not do. But are any of them true?
MYTH #1: Smiling Shots Work Best
Smile for photos. It’s drilled into our heads from an early age as the best behavior. On dating sites, that is not the best advice. When looking at dating profiles, there are three common types of face pictures: smiling, non-smiling, and giving a flirtatious face. On average, women will smile most often, and give a flirty face about less than 10% of the time. However, studies have shown that the flirtatious face combined with eye contact with the camera can yield the best results for women.
For men, however, a flirty face usually won’t fly, nor will a smile. In fact, not smiling and looking away from the camera will often yield the best results. Perhaps the bit of mystery will entice a user to send a message.
Truth: Women, flirt with the camera for best results. Men, look away for an air of mystery to attract messages to your inbox.
MYTH #2: Retire the “MySpace Angle”
We’ve all seen it, whether we ever used MySpace or not: that self-taken photograph from a webcam or a cell phone (remember, MySpace came and went before “selfie” was even a word), taken at a high angle and filled with a coy look from the subject. This predecessor to the bathroom selfie sounds pretty lame and overdone, right? Turns out, it’s not so bad. In fact, the MySpace Angle is the most effective shot for women on dating sites.
Truth: Ladies, don’t knock it ‘till you try it. It gets results.
MYTH #3: Shirtless Shots Don’t Help Men
If you have a six-pack, it can be beneficial to show it off. An “ab-shot” has been proven to get some positive results. Of course, the man must have the right physique to see this result work best. Age is also a big factor here, as studies have shown the “ab shot” will work best for younger men than their older counterparts. As you age, the trick gets less effective.
On a similar note for women, cleavage in a picture is also an effective way of getting more messages, while similar to men’s “ab shot” that the cleavage will work more effectively at a younger age, the drop-off isn’t nearly as drastic for women as it is for men. Of course, use the cleavage shots sparingly if you’re looking for more than just a hook-up.
Truth: Young guys, if you’ve got it, flaunt it. Older guys, don’t expect it to work as well.
MYTH #4: Always Show Your Face
Sounds like a no-brainer. If you’re trying to attract a potential match, you would want them to know what you look like, right? Who would disagree with that? As it turns out, results may disagree with that. If you show something interesting, mysterious or sexy instead of your face, you can still bring in the same amount of messages as you would by showing off your face. If this is the route you try to take, the name of the game is to display something that is intriguing enough to get someone to message you. Pique a user’s curiosity, and they will reach out to you.
Of course, you should be willing to show your face to someone before meeting them in person, so be ready to follow up on these intriguing non-portraits with something showing off your face. You can even use a MySpace angle if you want.
Truth: If you display something interesting enough, you can still achieve some success without showing your face off right away. But be ready to show your face before an actual date.