10 Photos NOT To Post For Online Dating (Guys Edition)
This post may contain affiliate links. Please read my disclosure policy.
Happy holidays, everyone!! I’m back with another post in my series on being single. And since this time of the year can sometimes be a bit of a downer for singles, I thought we’d lighten the mood with the topic that never fails to entertain — online dating photos.
(Oh yes, we’re going there.)
To those of you out there who have tried online dating, and spent hours wading through profiles after profiles — especially profile pictures after pictures — this one’s for you.
To those of you who have never experienced the modern marvel that is online dating, believe me, I couldn’t make some of this stuff up if I tried.
But for the general good of the online dating world, and to hopefully offer some help to all of those handsome bachelors out there considering a bathroom selfie, I would like to offer this helpful little list of 10 photos guys should NOT post for online dating. Yes, yes, I know that we girls have our own set of cliche photos (hello, feet in the sand?), thus a special girls’ edition will follow soon.
Now before you all start emailing me about being Judgy McJudgerson, please know right off that this is all in good fun. Grain of salt, people. Especially you men today — I respect you and know that you’re bravely putting yourself out there on online dating with the best of intentions. But boy oh boy, have your photos made my day on more than a number of occasions. ;)
So for any guys out there getting Matched, EHarmonized, Fished a Plenty, struck with an OK arrow from Cupid, Mingling with Christians and more right now, I invite you to put down your weights, take off those sunglasses, and enjoy this post.
1. The Bathroom Mirror Selfie
Or usually — the string of multiple bathroom selfies. Often with wardrobe changes. Usually with the attempted sexy “smoldering” look. And mind you, always with a toilet in the background. Because what’s more sexy than a toilet in the background?
Oh men, I know that the bathroom is probably the home to the largest mirror in your house, so I get why the bathroom selfies would theoretically be a good idea. (Ok, it’s a stretch, but I get it.) Remember though that this is our first impression of you. And where do first impressions take place in real life? Definitely not in your bathroom. So step away from the shower, hand your friend a camera, and let us see you in your best non-bathroom light. ;)
2. The Macho, Macho Man
Sorry to break it to you guys, but we aren’t looking for tickets to the “gun show” in your profiles. Nor pics of you dripping sweat (and smelling lovely, we’re sure) at the gym. Nor do you need to highlight in every section of your bio that you workout, count “going to the gym” as your top hobby, or are “looking for a girl who values physical fitness”.
Trust us, we think it’s super cool that you take care of yourself and stay in shape. And if sports or working out are big parts of your life, then awesome — post that classic photo of you and your buds crawling through the mud to the finish line or playing volleyball or biking in that triathlon. Those are fun! But the sweaty guy pics and your bench press number can, um, stay at the gym.
3. The Man Without A Face
Ok, we totally get that you often wear sunglasses or hats when you are outside. We do too! Cheers to hipster apparel and protecting your skin and eyes from those harmful UV rays, right?
But when it comes to posting photos online, just nix them both. There are endless photos of unidentifiable men on online dating sites, and if we see those, we’ll pass right over them. Because the eyes are the window to the soul right?
Indeed. We want to see nothing less than your soul. :)
4. The Where’s Waldo
Oh my gosh. That’s super cool that you’ve traveled to the mountains! And swam on the beach! And scaled an iceberg in Alaska! And hiked Machu Pichu! And worked with the Peace Corps in Africa!
But photos upon photos of vast landscapes and a teeeeeny tiny you (if you’re in there at all)?
Ok, ok, maybe post one or two for travel cred. But otherwise, focus on the photos that have you in focus, and save the rest for a little photo slide show on date night #3 at your place. Then we can snuggle up and you can tell travel stories for hours. Way more fun, right?
5. The Car
I’m pretty sure that every girl’s dating profile does not include a photo of her with her car. But I’ll bet that about 90% of guys’ do. What is it with guys and their cars?!?
Ok, I know, rhetorical question. But seriously guys, if you think you’re going to impress us with your sweet ride, think again. We just want to know that you have some wheels to drive us to dinner. ;)
6. The Ex-Girlfriend Crop
Double points if Photoshop was used to blur or blacken the ex out. Triple points if you crop out girls on either side of you. Quadruple points if the photo from your previous wedding (oh yes, they’re out there).
I don’t care if it’s the most flattering photo of you ever. If a girl’s in the photo, we are going to assume that (unless clearly captioned) this is your most recent ex. And your attractiveness immediately turns into awkwardness, which turns into ahhh-let’s-just-move-onto-the-next-profile-ness. Sorry, Charlie.
So the solution to this one is easy — just find some other great photos to post! Trust us, anything will be better than the awkward unidentifiable blonde hair on your shoulder.
7. The Shirtless
Just as your mother probably told you at age 3 — “Son, get your clothes back on!!”
Here’s the thing. If we meet you at a party or a wedding or a coffee shop, I’m pretty positive that you are always going to be fully dressed for that first impression. So why it seems reasonable for you to throw half-naked photos all over your profile is a wee bit perplexing, to say the least.
So even if you have the best abs ever (and especially if you don’t), just be a gent and put your clothes on — some nice, buttoned-up, normal clothes that your mother would approve of. Keep it classy, San Diego.
8. The Hunter
Bloody dead animals that you shot and killed and hold up as a trophy for the world to know that you know how to hunt?
Totally a turn-on.
9. The Mustache
Ok, I’m prepped and know I’m probably going to get a lot of flack on this one. And I know that many of you No-Shave-November fans are in it for a good cause.
But unless it’s November, or unless you’re a super hipster who really knows how to rock a mustache (and even that can be debatable), it’s probably best to play it safe and either go all (beard) or nothin’ (nothin’). Not worth the risk.
10. The Beer Fanatic
(Ok, I thought it’d be nice to include at least one decent photo of my friend, GQ-model, and extremely-good-sport, Nate.)
But this final one is just a little reminder that your online dating profile should be advertising you, not your favorite beer. I’m all for enjoying drinks with friends, and posting a photo or two to document said enjoyment is NBD. But when you’re holding a beer in everysinglephoto? Maybe just a bit of a red flag.
So put your coozie down, and grab a glass of water every now and then. You know, gotta stay hydrated after those other beers…
The Runners Up
- The Dog Lover – Yes, we would love to see a photo of Fido and know that you’re a dog lover (a definite “plus” in my book). But honestly, there’s usually a checkmark for pets somewhere in your profile, and one photo or mention will suffice. So save that long string of dog photos for your Instagram feed.
- The Which-One-ARE-You? – Photos of you unidentified in a crowd surrounded by friends? Ok, a couple of those are cool. Shows you have a social life. But for heaven’s sakes, help us figure out which one you are! That’s what captions are for. (Ex. “This is a photo of the groomsmen at my sister’s wedding — I’m the third one from the left.”) See, look how easy that was?
- The Lone Ranger – On the flipside, profiles that include photos of you and only you are also a little suspect. Do you have friends? Do you care about other people? A sociable mix is definitely a good idea.
- The Unidentified Baby/Kid Lover – Similar to above, unless a baby is identified, we are going to assume that it’s yours. If it is, then congratulations, and please note that with a caption. If it’s your niece or nephew or best-friend’s-cousin’s-girlfriend’s kid, then you’d best note that as well.
- The Rich Man – Posting any photos related to money, listing your income (or income bracket), talking about investments, or anything else related to your income always makes me cringe a bit. Do you really want to share that information with the entire online world? I know some may disagree, but I for one recommend keeping those financials to yourself, unless you want to attract the sort of person who’s in it just for that.
Feel free to also check out these other posts about being single:
- 30 and Single
- The Word “Single”
- 10 Things NOT To Say To Single People
- 10 Things TO Say To Single People
- Single For The Holidays
Disclaimer: Again, please know that ALL of these are in good fun. I tried online dating a few times in the past, and am sure that my lovely profile pics went check-check-check down the upcoming girls edition of this list. It seems to be how we humans roll, especially when trying to complete an online dating profile that’s horribly awkward to begin with.
So, grain.of.salt., friends. But hope you enjoy.
Also, big thanks to a bunch of friends for chiming in on the topic. And BIG thanks again to Nate for being a model-for-an-hour. I’m pretty sure he would never post these photos on an online dating site. Except maybe the ‘stache photo, since I think he and most of the world highly approve of #9. ;)