Like probably most of you, I have a love/hate relationship with online dating. Determining if there’s attraction, commonalities and connection via an iPhone interface isn’t my ideal method of finding a soulmate. But my offline options are limited with most single people resorting to the swiping game. So I try.

And as I’ve explored and navigated the murky waters of various dating apps, I’ve identified some rather undesirable tactics men use. No matter your intentions, they serve as surefire ways to send me (and most other women) running for the hills.

So without further ado, here’s a list of things you should avoid doing on dating apps if you want to have any actual success with modern women—in and out of the bedroom…

Refrain from calling me “darling,” “baby” or any other term of endearment, especially before I’ve ever met you in person. It’s too much, too soon.

1. Don’t call yourself an “entrepreneur.” Women read this to mean JOBLESS. For the 90 percent of men who claim to be entrepreneurs, please indicate your exact job title and what legitimate business you own. Pro tip: Details in your bio akin to #DreamBigHustleHarder don’t make a great case for your legitimacy as a business owner.

2. Don’t throw a fit when we request to know your height because you failed to mention it on your profile (which was probably an intentional move). Just like you, women don’t like surprises.

3. Refrain from calling me “darling,”baby” or any other term of endearment, especially before I’ve ever met you in person. It’s too much, too soon.

4. Don’t lose your shit and accuse me of losing interest when I don’t respond immediately. I have a life, and being on Bumble 24/7 is not top priority.

5. Don’t send me a message at 2 a.m. wondering why I didn’t respond to you earlier in the evening. Have you really lost sleep all night fretting about that??

6. Filling your profile with shirtless bathroom shots is an instant turnoff. I get that you work out, but please confirm that there is substance behind your built physique. Unless there’s not . . . then please keep moving.


7. Lay off the Zoolander selfies! We thought we were ridiculous with the selfies, but you guys are killing the narcissistic game.

8. Please no dick pics, especially several with different backgrounds. It’s creepy, it’s gross, and yes, we show all our girlfriends and ridicule you. And NO, I won’t reciprocate.

9. “Looking for my queen” or “looking for someone who can keep up”—seriously, can you get any more douchey? Leave the Royal Family out of your love life. Authenticity is key to building valuable relationships, which is what I assume you mean by wanting to find “someone who can keep up.”

10. If your first message is “let’s meet tonight,” plan on immediate elimination. Just because online dating takes away the magic of the meet, it doesn’t mean women are oblivious to your attempts to skip the actual date. Meeting at your place for store-brand Cheetos and a crappy Netflix movie will never win over the girl you’re really after.

11. I’m not looking for a pen pal. My time is valuable and I really can’t get to know you or establish any kind of connection via messaging. Plan an actual date within the first few messages. And no, “meeting up at your place” still doesn’t count here.

Bombarding a woman who simply isn’t interested with follow-up messages will only make you look insane. If you don’t get a response after reaching out, writing to her every day for the next week probably won’t change your fate.

12. Avoid putting up old photos on the dating apps that look completely different from your current photos on Facebook. Yes, we do a bit of investigating (some call it stalking), and when there’s a huge discrepancy between the photos, you might end up with a last-minute cancellation.

13. Cheesy opening lines are a no-go. None of this “pick an answer” crap will serve as an effective icebreaker for most women. Just reach out with a genuine expression of interest.

14. Avoid the spray-and-pray method. If you’ve hit up a friend or two of mine, I will figure it out. Seriously, this happened to me once. My friend mentioned a guy who had sent her a “cute” message. I showed her my matching message, and she realized he had copied and pasted the message to send to multiple women on the same day she received hers.

15. On a related same note, opening with a ridiculous compliment is a waste of time. Things like “You’re the most beautiful woman I’ve ever laid eyes on” might as well be followed with “. . . And I’ve said this to 10 other women on this app today.” Even if you mean it, save your profession of infatuation until date three or four.

16. Bad spelling or grammar is a major red flag. If you can’t string together a decent sentence for your bio and/or intro message, it’s unlikely a woman will be into the idea of speaking to you over dinner. Sometimes intelligence doesn’t translate in a text message. If you struggle with spelling and grammar, run a quick check in a Word doc or ask a friend to proofread your bio or messages before you send them off.

17. Bombarding a woman who simply isn’t interested with follow-up messages will only make you look insane. If you don’t get a response after reaching out, writing to her every day for the next week probably won’t change your fate.


18. Offering to buy expensive gifts for a woman you’ve just started speaking to is flat-out creepy. It makes you seem more like a Nigerian prince email scammer than the successful gent you’re probably attempting to come off as.

19. Starting out our message thread with questions intended to throw me off guard is typically a good way to send off the creep vibe as well. Things like “tell me your story” and “tell me where you see yourself in five years” are a bit too deep for the first message. Can a girl at least enjoy the complimentary bread basket on the first date before baring her soul?

20. Comparing me to “most girls” is unlikely to make me feel flattered. Saying something to the tune of I’m not like most girls who are only after your entrepreneurial riches will immediately set off the douche alarm.

21. Don’t be the creep who sees me on Bumble and decides to hit me up on Facebook to request a date. If I didn’t swipe right or initiate a conversation, that should be a good indication that I’m not interested.

Photos: Getty Images/asiseeit; Getty Images/Image Source