The Tinder Games: It’s All About What You Display

The Tinder Games: It’s All About What You Display

You often hear people complaining about online dating and their lack of success. Well time for some tough love…’s all about what you display!

I’ve done two case studies to prove that online dating match rates are a product of what you’re displaying. Since you’re limited to how many photos one can use in an online dating profile, people usually try to show their best self (sometimes not remotely close to what they actually look like). I know men usually struggle with this. Us men don’t take as many photos as our opposite sex nor are the most photogenic bunch neither!

Before we get into the results of the two case studies, there are a few points to mention in regards to how the experiments were conducted:

  • For about one week, I used dating apps Tinder and Bumble.
  • The first picture (out of five) in my online dating profile for each app was the only change made. Everything else remained the same (order of pictures and bio description).
  • I had no way of controlling these apps’ algorithms (a.k.a how these dating tools match their users).
  • Never really tracked how often I used these apps, just went through profiles when I had time throughout the day.

Let’s take a look at the results!


Case Study 1: The Suit


For one of my earlier posts on how to get a perfect suit on a budget (link here), I took a photo with yours truly wearing a navy suit. I’ve received a few compliments from family and friends on this photo, so I figured why the hell not test it out on dating apps!

About six months ago, I put the following photo as my first profile picture on Tinder and Bumble just for fun

Case Study 1: The Suit

and both apps’ match rates went up! On Tinder, women were messaging me first, indicating high levels of interest (nothing wrong with this, just outside the norm). Suit compliments were common in initial stages of online conversation. Funny enough, the phrase, “a suit is to women what lingerie is to men”, occurred way too often.

Just adding one good quality photo increased my match rate indefinitely!


Case Study 2: The Puppy


Everyone loves cute puppies, but there’s something about a man with a young dog that attracts women. The Labrador puppy in the picture below isn’t even mine, it’s my parents. Honestly, the first thought that ran through my mind when I found out they were bringing this little rascal home was, “let me use him for this online dating survey”!

Case Study 2: The Puppy

Shallow, I know, but it’s for science.

Just as with the first case study, I used the above photo for my first profile picture on both Tinder and Bumble. The increase in match rates were similar to the first case study. Obviously, there weren’t any suit compliments, but instead, comments were typically about how adorable my dog was. F.Y.I women weren’t too pleased when they found out this puppy wasn’t mine!


Picture Perfect


With both case studies, I’ve proven that what you display determines your match rate in the online dating world. You can be of average looks while using quality pictures of yourself to obtain a high number of matches! Now, does it guarantee online dating success? Sure doesn’t. The rest of the work is up to you.

But how important is this in reality? Why portray something that you aren’t? If you decide to meet up with people using highly edited, not realistic pictures of yourself, what’s the point? I highly doubt you’ll be hearing from them again.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, some people who look average or below average in their online dating profiles look way better face-to-face in person. Static pictures don’t account for peoples’ mannerisms and how they conduct themselves in public. I think this is the case for lots of men, so don’t sweat it if your results from online dating tools aren’t planning out as expected!


Hope you enjoyed this week’s “The Tinder Games” post! For the previous online dating post on its effectiveness, click here! Follow me on my newly created twitter account and join our list! As always, don’t forget to comment, like, share, and subscribe!


“The goal of online dating is to get offline as quickly as possible.”


Book of the Month:                                  “Man’s Search For Meaning” by Viktor E. Frankl


"Man's Search For Meaning" By Viktor E. Frankl

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