If you’ve ever tried online dating, you know the most difficult part of the process is choosing the perfect snapshot of yourself. Where do you even begin to find a photo that says you’re fun, adventurous, laid back, ambitious, friendly, funny, attractive, great with kids, great with dogs, and great with mums?
Simone Paget, a Canadian writer who documents all things dating, sex, and relationships on her site Skinny Dip knows which of your photos won’t work.
Paget told us all about the worst photos you can use in your online dating profile.
The Bathroom Mirror Selfie
Paget: The cliche of all online dating cliches. Absolutely no good can come from the shirtless bathroom mirror selfie. Not only does a photo of you posing in front of a cloudy mirror send the message that you’re a lonely soul incapable of getting a friend to take a few decent photos of you, it also says you don’t own any Windex.
The Photo Of You From 10 Years Ago
Paget: Once upon a time you looked like John Travolta from “Saturday Night Fever” and now you look like John Locke from “Lost.” Ain’t no shame in that game! However, what is shameful is posting super old photos in an attempt to get more dates. It’s a disservice to yourself because when we meet you in person, trust me — people can tell. However you look — own it. It’s way sexier.
The Half Naked Man
Paget: There’s something very unsettling about seeing a strange man without pants on, yet people seem to think that it’s totally OK to post these kinds of photos on their online profiles. Here’s my rule: If you wouldn’t walk into a Starbucks without pants on, you certainly shouldn’t be pantsless in your online profile.
The Photo Of You Doing Something That Doesn’t Make Sense
Paget: Why are you just staring at the washing machine? Avoid choosing photos that need to be explained — even if the explanation is: “It’s an inside joke with my friend.”
The Group Shot
Paget: These are usually presented alone and accompanied with a caption like, “I’m the one with the brown hair and the smile.” Thanks, that’s really helpful! Usually I’ll spend about 10 seconds trying to decipher who I am supposed to be looking at before giving up and moving on to the next profile.
The One Where Your Ex Is Cropped Out
Paget: I’m always suspicious of anyone who has photos where their ex is noticeably cropped out, or worse, blurred out. Looking at your dating profile shouldn’t make me feel like I’m watching an episode of “Cops.”
These are only six kinds of photos you should completely avoid when creating your online dating profile. To see the full list, check out Paget’s roundup here.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.