Charlotte Bridge, 24.09.2015

How to write a good dating profile: The dos and don'ts

Creating a good dating profile is not as easy as you think. Mastering the art of confidence without showing off can be tricky. You want to demonstrate your personality while maintaining an air of mystery. And where is the line between being flirty and attractive and being painfully forward?

Relationship Coach Sandy Weiner suggests, “If you work hard on improving your profile, you will be in the top 10 per cent of all people dating online. You'll definitely stand out from the crowd.” In order to help you along we’ve teamed up with some real EliteSingles members to make a clear step-by-step guide to writing a good dating profile. Here are the top dos and don’ts to assist you with online dating success.

1. It’s all about having the right attitude

DO Write your profile when you’re in a good mood

The ideal online dating profile is original, witty, intriguing and provides insight into what you are like as a person. A confident person exudes attraction so make sure you’re in a good frame of mind when writing your dating profile. EliteSingles Partner Psychologist, Relationship Coach Sam Owen, explains that people can easily detect negativity online, ‘‘you will transfer your negativity to [others] and then they’ll associate you with that negativity, subconsciously and perhaps consciously.  This will result in them avoiding you, even if they don’t consciously recognise why they are.’’ It is worth bearing this in mind then, when writing about yourself - a good dating profile should be upbeat and fully completed with no empty spaces or one word answers. Let the people viewing your profile see what you’re passionate about by keeping it updated with new and exciting content to reflect your personal development.

DON’T Use sexual innuendo

When considering the online dating game, the Irish concluded that the biggest turnoff is sexual innuendo with 24% of members surveyed agreeing it is the ultimate dating profile no-no. This was followed by negativity (21%), insufficient description (20%), spelling or grammatical errors (17%), narcissism (10%) and clichés (8%).  Turn offs differ around the world though; members in the UK found poor spelling to be the biggest put off and those in New Zealand found impoliteness to be their biggest problem.

READ MORE: Got the profile perfected? The same tips apply for sending the first message

2. Take a decent photo

DO Upload a photo

A whopping 52% of members surveyed said they wouldn’t even open a profile without photos. Choosing to be anonymous when you write a profile then, is essentially alienating yourself from your potential matches. Indeed, a good dating profile, should contain a decent profile picture,  with 49% of singles rating the photo as the one thing that they look most closely at (a trend echoed in every single country we surveyed). Relationship coach, Sam Owen explains that, “We build up an idea of a person’s personality by looking at their photo, how they have posed, their facial expression, the clothes they are wearing and much more. If you provide people with those cues they feel they can make more of an informed decision as to whether or not to pursue you.”

Top Tip: A full length head and shoulders profile picture and ideally an action shot are a great way  to add variety to your profile. An image of you engaging in a sporting activity or hobby is an excellent icebreaker and likely to attract the attention of likeminded potential matches. Choice of colour may also influence how your images are perceived, as psychologists at the University of Rochester in New York found that men are more attracted to women wearing red.

DON’T Fall in to the photo traps

However, simply having a picture is not enough. Those who have a good dating profile also avoid the common photo mistakes. In Ireland these include having a photo that is too revealing (chosen as the biggest no-no by 22%), presenting a photo that is poorly photo-shopped (16%) and being in too many group pictures (15%). Surprisingly, the much-maligned selfie was not as hated as its reputation would suggest, being picked by just 7% of our members.

READ MORE: Now you know how to stand out - it's time to get your head in the game!

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3. Be yourself

DO Show the real you

The whole point of online dating is to find someone who you’re truly compatible with, which is why a good dating profile needs to illustrate the real you. In fact, 80% of our respondents would disapprove if someone turned up to a date looking different from their profile, so tempting as it might be to use an old photo, it will not help you in the long run. Pick a recent photo (taken in the last year), for a good dating profile. Furthermore, the survey found that 66% wouldn’t even consider a relationship with someone who embellished themselves! In other words, it pays to stay honest. Laurie Davis, author of Love @ First Click, emphasises the importance of being authentic and suggests an attractive dating profile is best achieved by avoiding generic statements and clichés, rather instead considering what makes you unique.

DON’T Tell white lies

While it can be tempting to embellish a profile with a few well-meant white lies, you'll only be doing yourself a disservice. If you opt for untruths, you don’t give anyone the chance to fall for the real you. In other words, don’t let little lies get in the way of finding true love: when it is time to write a profile, honesty really is the best policy. Leading psychologist and counsellor Rebekah Doweyko recommends “presenting yourself authentically” not least because “it is much easier than putting forth the energy required to pretend.”

Evidently, when you sit down to write a profile, it is important to consider these tips in order to assist your online dating success. These guidelines will ensure that you create a good dating profile, which truly reflects the best of you, in turn helping you find someone special.

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