I have a mixed bunch of friends. And I pride myself in it. Musicians, stock brokers, budding fashion journalists, corporate event planners, nurses – the list goes on. Some are straight, some are bisexual some are gay, some aren’t sure. Some are single some aren’t.
However, the common denominator is that most of them use Tinder.
Networking and maintaining friendships takes effort, especially if you’re sprawled throughout the country. One of the benefits however, is always getting fresh news.
The promotion news, the new flat news, the I’m-now-into-yoga news.
What always undoubtedly comes up however, is the ‘so, who are you dating?’ question. Every. Single. Time. (If you’ll pardon the pun, in my case.)
The reality for me is I have an uncanny relationship with Ben and Jerry’s ice cream and actors from my favourite films and TV shows. My actual verbal answer, as in, the answer that actually leaves my mouth so I don’t come across as she-must-own-thirty-two-cats insane? ‘No one, I’m not dating. I don’t really have the time.’ Which is also true.
The reactions can be diverse. One friend laughed after my declaration for a bit, and said, ‘but seriously though, who are you dating?’ I had to reaffirm my singleness multiple times for it to be actively believed, which is on the one hand flattering in one sense, but on closer inspection either infers I am a secretive hussy, or disbelief that I could be that boring. My brows furrowed.
However, no matter what reaction I receive from my friends upon my non-existent love life at the moment, the ultimate destination of the conversation ends at the door of Tinder, and I’m given a full demonstration. After long discussions, hassling and even in one case bribing, I signed up and gave myself a two week challenge to do it, and here’s in a nutshell what I think the pros and the cons are of Tinder.
One good thing about Tinder, is it acknowledges the importance of chemistry. Whilst I believe chemistry is an intricate balance of personality and charisma; Tinder adopts the primal instinct of dating – “hot or not?”
Whilst people write this off as being ‘superficial’ and ‘shallow’, at the end of the day, looks actually can be biologically important. The umbrella of looks, including the little things such as your eyes, that smile, a cheeky grin, a sprinkling of freckles. There needs to be something sexually attractive about someone to satisfy the physical elements of a relationship, and it shouldn’t be entirely written off.
Another superficial benefit, is a confidence boost – shallow as it may seem, used sparingly and with caution, Tinder can give a little confidence boost, particularly to those who haven’t been in the dating game for a while. Cynics who rebuff Tinder as narcissistic need only recognise that whether it is someone offering to buy you a drink at a bar, smiling at you in a café, or swiping right on Tinder, the result of short term flattery is produced from all three situations. Someone finds you attractive.
In this world of technology, meeting people couldn’t be easier. It’s convenient. It’s quick and with the swiping, it’s accessible to all. Much like internet dating, sometimes genuinely pleasant people have exhausted their network already of potential romantic interests and need to cast their net wider. Affirming who you find attractive with one effortless cruel swipe, it matches you with someone who thinks you’re attractive and the floodgates of communication are indeed, opened. Exciting!
A negative. There’s always the risk of getting some creeps. The type of creeps who drop all social etiquette and sound totally filthy, in the style of Jay from the Inbetweeners, but with less humour. But I suppose, it comes with the territory – no one forces you to use Tinder and you are in total control of who you message or reply to.
The annoying profiles. From duck faces to cliff faces, the profile photos range from the grainy to the look-at-me-I’ve-travelled (guilty). The biographies also differ, ranging from genuinely interesting, but in the most case minimalistic, denoting simply height, location, or their Snapchat account. Then you will find the profiles who whilst honest, can be downright crass and forthright stating needs and wants. (I’m sure you can guess what needs and wants.)
Another drawback, is that Tinder is often used for quick one night stands or gaze from afar admiration. Few people I know have actually braved it and met up with any of their matches, and those I know who have are comfortable with the fact that it was an easy fix with no strings attached.
To be taken seriously as a dating app would only bring disappointment – most on Tinder I would say aren’t participating for the committed and meaningful, but that is me generalising. I’d recommend giving it a go, deleting your account is incredibly easy, and nothing is shared on other social media sites.
Have any of you ladies joined in on the left swipe, right swipe?
Tweet us @amormagazineuk to let us know 🙂