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Online Dating Magazine > Columns > Date & Relate > Online Profile Pet Peeves Part 2

Date & Relate
by Sara Hodon

Online Dating
Profile Pet Peeves
Part Two

I did an earlier column about things to leave out of your online profiles, and I was advised to be an equal opportunity critic.   As I mentioned in the previous column, obviously I stick to browsing through the men’s profiles, but someone pointed out that some women’s could use a makeover, too.

The tips below are meant to be useful to anyone, but ladies, it’s time to pick on you a bit.  


Remember—your profile is supposed to show you in your best light.   Take a look at your info and ask yourself—Is this the message I want to be sending to my future spouse?   Granted, you may have been taken in by the greatest-sounding profile in the world, only to find out that the guy was a total jerk in person.   

Obviously, you can’t control these things all the time—meeting people online does have a certain risk factor involved—however, you can control your image and the first things potential dates see and learn about you. 

If your profile includes anything listed below, you may want to do some revising:

  • Group photos.  Especially if it’s your default photo.  Maybe you have a few that you feel are the best pics of you in existence, but how are potential dates supposed to know which one you are?   You might look great in a particular pic, but what if it was taken during spring break or on your last vacation, when you were up to some things you aren’t too proud of now?   Or, perhaps you’re one of those types who look very different in photos than in real life.  A nice, simple head shot of you is best.  Obviously, take a few shots until you find a few that you feel good about. 

  • Provocative photos.  You might think you’re saying “I’m fun and flirty”, but a guy might interpret this as “I’m tawdry and trashy.”   Choose another photo besides the one of you in the fishnets, short skirt, or having a little too much fun at the bar.  I know you’re not supposed to judge a book by its cover, but think about the message you’re sending.  “Sexy” is good, “slutty”, quite frankly, is not. 

  • Photos of you with your ex.  On one hand, all of the guys looking at your profile can compare themselves to your ex and see how they measure up.  But on the other hand, why would you want to post a photo of yourself with your ex?   Aren’t you supposed to be over him?   Okay, so you don’t have any recent photos of you alone.  Ask your friend/co-worker/roommate/sister to snap a few shots of you.  Or if no one’s around and you want to upload that photo ASAP, pull the old “Hold the camera out in front of your face and take a picture of yourself” trick. 

  • TMI (or, Too Much Information, or Things to Not Reveal Until About the 20th Date).  We all have those annoying habits and quirky personality traits.   While it’s good to be an open and honest person, be careful to not be too honest.    If you think nothing of belching after a big meal, whether you’re at home or in public, don’t be surprised if the guy is less than turned on by your un-ladylike behavior.  Though you should absolutely be yourself, there are things that guys know about ladies, but wish they didn’t, and you certainly don’t have to remind him of them.   Bathroom habits top this list.  I would certainly be up front about any physical impairments or challenges that you may have, but there are just some things that total strangers, and especially potential dates, probably just don’t need to know (if you’re lucky and the guy sticks around, he’ll learn your “quirks” soon enough.)   And again, they really don’t need to be included in your profile. 

  • Rants about men.  So you’re last date was a jerk.  And the three before him were total nightmares.  And the two before him were just not compatible with you.  It’s easy to give up and/or re-word your profile so that there can be no question about what you’re looking for.  But be careful to not have your profile sound like a tirade against the opposite sex. Nothing says “Damn, girl, I can’t wait to meet you!” like a 250 word monologue about why men are evil/lazy/stupid.   I’ve done this in the past, and honestly?  The few brave guys who did respond didn’t sound all that interesting anyway.   Just because your last relationship ended badly doesn’t mean all men are like your ex.   Give them a chance.

  • Demands.  “Unless you make $100,000 a year, don’t bother replying.”  “Only dates guys who drive a Lexus.”  Oh, really?  As Dr. Phil would say, “How’s that working for you?”  And how many of the above guys responded to your profile?  Chances are, they’re too busy working to earn that $100,000 a year or pay for that Lexus.  Did it ever occur to you that a workaholic wouldn’t have much time to spend with you?  Or you could ignore the sweetest, most devoted and loyal guy in order to get to the self-centered, conceited jerk who might look good but be a total ass?  Though it’s good to have a list of “basics” that you’re looking for in a guy, don’t limit yourself.  If you absolutely insist that you must date a certain type of guy, you’re missing out. 

Related Links:
> Online Dating Profile Pet Peeves (Part One)
> Online Profile Tips for Online Daters (Office Hours with Dr. Jim)
> Online Dating Profile Tips (aritcle)
> Writing a Profile Ad That Increases Your Attraction (feature)

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Date & Relate is published every Thursday by Online Dating Magazine columnist Sara Hodon.

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