Congratulations on deciding to take the plunge into online dating! Whether your best friend talked you into it, or you told yourself that the time is now to hunker down and start looking, Sexcerpts is going to prepare you to meet your match. We talked with the Web’s top internet dating experts to help get you started:
1. Pick Your Profile Shot: It’s no secret that, for most people, the picture is the most important part of a dating profile. Online dating expert Julie Spira, author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating, advises keeping your photo simple and authentic. “Make sure it’s a close-up shot of you and that you’re smiling,” she says. Things to avoid: blurry pics, photos of you with your girl posse on ladies’ night, shots of you with another guy cropped out, and portraits featuring your pet. And as much as it may pain you to do so, keep it recent. “Leave the 10-year-old photos out of the profile,” Spira says. “He needs to be able to recognize you on date night.”
2. Craft a Short but Sweet Bio: Avoid the urge to go on and on about your past, present, and future in your bio. Instead, stay positive and focus on what you love about life. “Your profile should be well thought out and reflective of you — but not a novel,” says Match.com dating expert Whitney Casey. “Keep the ‘about me’ section clean and bulleted or numbered. When looking at that section think: What are your best attributes? What do you like to do? What do you like in a man? Simple.”
3. Choose an Attention-Grabbing Name: Don’t keep the pre-selected screen name that has a ton of numbers in it, Spira says. Pick something unique. “Lisa1569 isn’t memorable, but SunsetArtist, ItalyLover, and Pianobaby have personality,” she says.
4. Be Honest: If you’re divorced or separated, say so. It’s only fair, Spira says. But avoid trumpeting how eager you are to tie the knot. “Interested in marriage? Click off the box that says so, but avoid writing about how much you’d like to be married someday,” she says. “Chances are he’s noticed it on your profile. Reminding him again will make him think you want to get married immediately, and it may send him running into the arms of another profile.”
5. Date on the Go!: The days of waiting by your princess phone for a guy to call are over. Download a dating app like Zoosk, JDate, or Match Mobile (or many others) to your smartphone, Casey says. ”Rather than sitting at home checking your inbox, you can be out while checking your inbox,” she says. “Plus, you can find other singles out in your zip code.”
6. Keep Your Profile Current: Think of your profile as a living, breathing thing. “You are more likely to be included in more searches by single men if you consistently update your profile,” Casey says. “Add new pics if you have recently been on a trip, change your dating headline like you would change your Facebook status, and if you like a new book or movie, talk about it. This gives men something to e-mail you about. Remember, men are action-oriented. Give them something to take action on!”
Follow Sexcerpts on Twitter!: @Sexcerpts_SK