On Tinder, we get to swiftly subject people to the basest yet most factored-in dating criterion: looks.
You swipe right or left on your phone indicating yea or nay to a potential date based on a user’s picture. That makes Tinder efficient, honest and deliciously cruel.
Swiping left means you theoretically never have to see that profile again. The best part is, no one has to know because your dismissal is anonymous. Tinder lets us be assholes, without judgment.
Only when you pick someone by swiping right and they’ve done the same, do you both discover your mutual interest and can message each other. Tinder gives us permission to do what we do anyway – be superficial.
Assuming you’ve mastered your own Tinder profile by posting pictures that include a clear representation of your face, a smile, eye contact and your body type, you might think you’re ready to find matches.
But have you perfected your swiping technique?
Even for those claiming modest requirements such as, “please have a chin, that’s all I ask,” there are ways to finesse Tinder’s usability. Yes, that basically means a system by which to accurately judge a book by its cover.
It is all about the prospective match’s first image, but in it, a dozen clues speak to everything from aesthetic to common sense to judgment to socialization. If a user has trouble with these basic elements, even if they look like the grown-up progeny of the Jolie-Pitts, you already know to wipe them away like they never happened.
Let this collection of Tinder DOs and DON’Ts guide you to that end, and happy swiping.
1. DO judge people on their originality.
A picture with a dog: overdone.
A picture of the user’s dog taking a mirror selfie: also overdone.
2. DON’T forget to reshuffle the deck.
Every once in a while, change up your discovery preferences when it comes to age and proximity. You don’t want to play with the same deck until you run out of cards because then you run out of not just fun, but a valuable means of procrastination.
3. DO avoid the Itchy Tinder Finger.
You can quickly go into autopilot when swiping left. So in order to avoid accidentally swiping away the one and agonizing over it for the rest of your life, find a piece of music with a moderate beat, and only swipe on the beat. The beat will give you the extra second to actually register each person.
4. DON’T feel guilty for serial left-swiping.
If you suffer from undue guilt for the callous dismissal of members of your species, or if music is forbidden by your religion and you need an alternate solution for Number 3, before swiping, simply mouth each person’s name that appears under their picture. That way you’ll buy enough time to respectfully acknowledge them before swiping them to oblivion.
5. DO be paranoid and look over your shoulder when swiping in a public place such as a restaurant.
Since Tinder is proximity-based, you never know if the person you’re wiping out of existence isn’t the waiter standing above you or a patron at a nearby table who can see your phone screen.
6. DON’T automatically swipe away your friends.
If the two of you were gonna get together, it would’ve happened before Tinder.
But if your friend knows you’re on Tinder, you’ll have to swipe right instead of left so that you’ll both sit in each other’s matches collecting dust out of courtesy.
7. DO ditch the guesswork.
A shot of a Tinder user along with two of his/her best friends having the grandest time at a pig roast as the main profile picture? What if you develop an instant crush on the wrong one?
We get it. The user knows other people. Here’s a tip: If it’s just the user in the shot and far enough for it not to be a selfie, those of us with brain cells can deduce that he/she likely knows at least one other human being in this world who was willing to take their picture.
But powers of deduction go only so far, and if there are two or more people in the main picture, it takes one swipe to get rid of them all.
8. DON’T ignore body language.
If there’s a hint of tongue in the main profile picture, or if the same two people appear in all six profile pictures, you wouldn’t be remiss to assume that activities involving said organ or said twosome are proffered. Just saying.
9. DO use Tinder as a neighborhood suitability gauge.
Tinder shows you users based on your current location, so if users or anyone in their pictures have questionable facial hair, welcome to Hipsterville and park yourself for a craft cocktail.
If every user has a teardrop tattoo, wear Kevlar.
10. DON’T hesitate to swipe left based on a user’s poor judgment or poor taste.
Every fifty or so user looking for a date thinks it’s a good idea to post a picture of themselves tongue-kissing a stripper or body builder.
Every twenty or so user hopes a good way to win you over involves a picture of both of their middle fingers directed at you.
Every ten or so user thinks a good way to attract a date is through a picture of themselves wearing a Hannibal Lecter muzzle.
These will be your most life-affirming swipes left.
11. DO pat or otherwise stroke yourself for allotting time to this meaningful work.
Spending forty minutes shuttling away humanity only means you’re that much closer to going through every person in a hundred mile radius until you find the one offspring of perfection that is meant for you.
12. DON’T doubt yourself when you see a profile you’re sure you swiped away last week.
Instead, feel validated that you made the right decision the first time around. This sneaky user deleted and then reactivated their account to be back in your pink Tinder sonar circle.
Simply enjoy the satisfaction of swiping them left a second time.
Finally, if you’re ever faced with the ominous “there are no more matches in your area,” don’t fret. Know that you’ve filled a quota, and do feel a sense of accomplishment, because swiping is exhausting work.
You’ve done well for the day and more people will appear shortly for you to swipe away.
What are your Tinder stories?
MORE PLACES TO FIND LONG AWKWARD PAUSE:
Facebook: Long Awkward Pause
Tumblr: Long Awkward Pause Mag
Would you like to see a topic discussed on LAP? Click HERE.