Going on a date with someone attractive is incredibly exciting.
But sometimes, meeting up is a horrible letdown.
To avoid wasting your time on someone who isn’t good for you, I’m going to give you the most common online dating red flags.In this article:More...
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What is an online dating red flag?
A red flag is a warning sign in someone’s profile or texting that hints at a problem or threat. If overlooked or ignored, you can spend a lot of time and energy on someone who does more harm than good.
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Online dating red flags – before matching
One of the best ways to avoid getting scammed or catfished is to filter out red-flag profiles. The next signs will save you hours of your life talking to the wrong person.
The more red flags you spot, the more you want to avoid the profile.
1. They have 3 or fewer photos
Would you be interested in buying a house if it only had two photos?
Of course not!
You have no clue if that actually represents the property.
Online dating profiles are no different. If they only have 3 or fewer photos, tread carefully.
2. They have little written information
A person who has an interest in Tinder, will most likely put in a little effort into their profile.
They’ll add their job, education, and a few sentences in their bio.
Does their Tinder profile have none of that?
That’s probably the profile of a bot. Or someone who doesn’t care about meeting up with you.
3. They use bio space for negativity
Negative vibes are a dealbreaker.
If their profile makes them seem like a sourpuss, then the odds are they’re a huge downer. And not worth your time.
Prime examples of negativity to avoid include:
- Talking shit about their ex.
- Being jaded about dating apps/relationships/dating.
- Talking about what they DON’T want: “Not looking for ONS!” or “Swipe left if BLA BLA BLA.”
4. They can’t spell
They don’t have to text like a novelist, but they should know their spelling and grammar.
Look, nobody writes perfectly. I get that.
But a bio is only a few lines long! One paragraph of flawless English is not too much to ask.
- Red flag: Im lvng ma bst lyf today n tomorow no ragrets.
- Green flag:: Livin my best life every day.
5. They look like they’re promoting their Insta
I’m not dissing Instagram.
Having your Instagram account connected to your Tinder profile is fine.
Until it isn’t. Like when their Insta is looking more like an Only Fans, and they @ their profile in their bio. Then they’re probably looking for followers, not dates.
Tinder actually made this type of promotion bannable. But I still come across the occasional profile, so I thought I’d mention it to be on the safe side.
6. They only have photos from the same day
Someone who’s wearing the same outfit or is at the same location in every photo?
That can only mean two things.
- They did a shoot and are mega try hard.
- They stole photos from someone else’s shoot and are a scammer.
7. They don’t show their full body
This might make me seem a little like an a-hole. If someone consistently keeps their full body out of their dating photos, they’re hiding something.
A short stature, a big gut, a pirate leg?
I don’t know. But I don’t trust it. And neither should you.
If someone can’t be honest from the start, that’s a red flag.
8. They look like two different people
Bit of a no brainer, right?
But I get you. If you see ONE profile that might have photos of TWO different but similar hot girls…
…your schlong-a-long doesn’t care.
Throw caution to the wind and swipe right anyway! (Don’t tell me that I don’t know you guys.)
But it’s still a red flag.
The odds are pretty big that you’re looking at a profile made by a bot or a Nigerian prince who’s tired of people ignoring his emails.
9. They only have professional photos
Don’t get me wrong. It’s a good sign if they’re trying to look their best for you.
But do they only have exceptionally high quality photos?
Then they’re either INCREDIBLY try-hard. Or a scammer who’s stolen a few stockphotos of a hottie.
10. They aren’t verified
I’ll be honest. I rarely swipe anyone right who isn’t verified.
Why would you take the risk?
It only takes about a minute to prove that you’re a real person.
If someone refuses to invest 60 seconds in showing the world they’re legit, that’s a potential catfish. And a potential time waste for you. 🚩
11. They repeatedly use the same angle
I don’t care how hot she is, if she’s ALWAYS using the same angle, something smells fishy.
And I’m not talking about the anchovies on her pizza.
Someone who uses only one angle is likely hiding something. Something they don’t want you to see.
And unless you plan to see them from one angle only, you may not like what the date will bring.
Online dating red flags – after matching
By following the tips above, you’ll filter out most scammers, catfishes, and duds. But the extra tricksy ones will manage to get through.
Here’s how to find red flags after matching.
1. They ask for money
You’re on a dating app to find a date, not a charity case. Them bringing up money problems should raise a big red flag for you. They may ask you to give them money to travel. And if you send any money, they will travel, but not to your place.
2. They shower you with affection
Men love-bomb more than women. And when a woman love-bombs you online, it’s usually a dude behind a female profile. No matter how tall, rich, and handsome you are, you should be suspicious of intense and instant affection. The only exception: you’re Brad Pitt.
3. They have a bad reason for being here
Online dating is confusing enough. Flaky people make it worse. Save yourself the trouble if your match seems to be “just here to see what it’s all about.” Also, watch out for “not sure what I’m looking for” and “My friends made me do it.”
4. They’re negative
If she always complains about dating, work, and life, in general, you end up giving free therapy. Trust me, no matter how hot they are, they will drain you. You could be using that energy to get laid five times over.
5. They’re using copy paste
I know it’s kinda hypocritical coming from me. My copy-paste texts have been used thousands of times. Copy-pasting an opener or a quip isn’t a problem, though. But when someone does nothing but copy-paste their messages, it’s a red flag.
6. They’re incredibly sexual
There’s nothing wrong with talking about sex. But it’s a bit weird if that’s all they talk about. Especially if you don’t look like Ryan Gosling. Every guy has a baseline of how sexual women are with him. If a match is way above that, its a red flag.
7. They’re hot and cold
Hot and cold matches are in complicated situations in real life. Sometimes they take too long to text back with a few words. And at other times they can be warm and quick to reply. If they leave you guessing, leave them on seen.
8. They don’t want to meet up
Some people are online to look for texting buddies (free validation). That might work for you, but you miss out on texting those who you can hang out and sleep with. Consider the trade-off of every text you send to someone who exists only on the internet.
9. They talk in short texts
If you’re practicing essay writing, you can text people who give one-word replies. But if their texts aren’t half as long as yours, they’re disinterested or boring. Save your breath and unmatch them.
10. They don’t ask questions
Curiosity kills the cat, and no curiosity kills chemistry. If you’re the only one asking questions, then you’re an interviewer. Questions show interest, and you shouldn’t have any in someone who has nothing to ask you.
11. They easily get irritated
The opposite of people who don’t ask questions are people who expect too much from you. They can get irritated over delayed replies. If they throw a tantrum over texting time and other small things, it’s a red flag. Watch out for texts like “You still there?” and “Helllo???! You could have just said you’re not interested, you know!”
12. They keep canceling
Two cancellations earn an unmatch. That’s my reliable formula. It’s fine to cancel on time. Even last-minute cancellations can be okay if they’re going through an emergency. But if this is a pattern, it’s definitely a red flag.
13. They refuse to share
Even secret agents make up a backstory and share it. If your match doesn’t reveal much about herself, you should stay away. She might be a Mafia boss’s wife or a Mafia boss herself. If you don’t know what you’re dealing with, don’t deal with it.
Online dating red flags – Summary
Online dating red flags are signs that people aren’t being honest, or are going to be trouble down the road. There are red flags like few pictures, non-verified profiles, and no bio, which expose scammers. And there are red flags like negativity and being hot and cold, which reveal problematic personalities. Avoid these to have a fun dating experience.
The number one cause of ignoring red flags is desperation.
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