Which Dating App Should You Use to Get Laid, Or Find Love?

Young man using smartphone on city street on a snowy day

Dating Apps are kind of like Easter egg hunts. Everybody comes away with some candy, but the kids who get the most are the ones who know where to look before they even start searching.

OK, bad metaphor. What I’m trying to say is that playing the dating app game takes some strategy. Not every dating app is made or used exactly alike, so the more you know about what you want and where to find it, the more success you’ll have.

Here’s some tips for what to look for on a few of the most popular dating apps, so you can find the one that’s right for you, and, you know… catch that rabbit.

This one puts the control in the lady’s hands. Women match with men they like, and the man has 24 hours to respond before the match is lost. So, if you are a punctual dude who likes to put the ball in the lady’s court, or a gal who wants to avoid all the spam of other dating apps, Bumble may be right for you. Pass on this app if you’re slow to check your phone.

The mega-mall of social sex seekers. The Great Barrier Reef of fish in the sea. Tinder is the one-stop shop for dating apps. But if you’re looking to buy just remember you get what you pay for.

Let’s be real. A few years ago Tinder was a great place to get laid as well as potentially meet a soul-mate. But, as the dating app world has diversified, Tinder’s quality of connection has plummeted. These days, everyone on Tinder knows what they’re getting into. You don’t go to McDonalds if you’re looking for filet-mignon. If you’re a guy or girl looking for a casual hook-up just off your Meyers-Briggs acronym, chances are you can find it on Tinder. Want a love connection? Look elsewhere homie.

OkCupid is to Tinder as BBC Planet Earth is to Shark Week. You’ll find animals on both, but the former offers a bit more depth than the latter. Due to OkCupid’s more detailed profile-building process, this app has a better chance of finding you someone you really vibe with than Tinder does. However, because of the time investment it takes to create that profile, you’ll find a lot more people who are interested in building a real relationship, not a hook-up roster. While women have been known to receive some pretty thirsty messages on the regular with this app, dudes should avoid if they’re just looking for tail. Stick to tinder to fuel that burn.

Six degrees of separation in app form, Hinge takes its name from its capitalization on existing social connections to find your match. The app uses mutual connections on Facebook to match you with someone your friends know but you might not. The thing about hinges, though, is that they swing both ways. The app may be great if you trust your friends and want to find a potential partner that passes their judgement, but this app can clap back and crack you in the face if you fuck up with a match and your whole friend group finds out. So have fun, but use wisely.

Coffee Meets Bagel
Niche works if it’s actually different, but fails if it’s gimmicky. You can decide for yourself what you think of this lesser-known app. What I will say is that the app is a little more confusing to use than your standard ‘swipe right, message, move on’ scenario. With the in-depth profile building also comes a lot of extra features that make the whole experience a little cluttered. One of the interesting features is that this app sends you a curated selection of matches based on your profile every day. These, for some reason, are called your ‘bagels.’ Yeah, I don’t really get it either. Bread isn’t sexy.

The League
I personally don’t get this one at all. But maybe that’s because I’m such a down to earth, humble guy. Really.

The League adds exclusivity to the dating app game. And I’m not talking monogamy exclusivity, I’m talking ‘no sneakers in the club’ exclusivity.

The idea with the League is that everyone on it is a young professional killing it in life and business. Therefore, your alma mater and your university are key in the app deciding whether or not you get into the party. This being said, if you really want in, the in-app purchase is the equivalent of paying the bouncer. If not, expect a wait-time for your ‘application’ to get processed. Once there, I’m sure you’ll find a someone who really cares about who you are and what you think.

Plenty of Fish
Plenty of Fish is the old Toyota of the dating app world. That thing will stay on the road forever, but it’s not without its kinks, and it’s certainly not the most flashy. Plenty of Fish has a huge user base, but it also has a ton of bots and scams trolling the site. The site is super usable for non-paying users, but, once again, expect to get targeted by scams. The real-person section of the site is also a little older than the Tinder or even OkCupid crowd, so be ready for that as well.

Land ho for matchmakers, Ship is another dating app that brings your friends into the mix. Instead of using friends to provide matches in your extended social network like Hinge, Ship employs your friends as arbiters of your matches. Not sure what you think about someone? Send their profile to your Ship crew. This one’s great for people who like to make their dating life public, or are just in it to joke around with their pals. Please don’t cyber-bully.

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