Last night I ventured to match.com’s ladies only event to meet with like-minded women and be dazzled by the Shaftsbury Theatre’s Memphis the Musical. The singing, the dancing, the orchestra, all in the name of a glorious cross-cultured love affair between Huey Calhoun and Felicia Suzanne. No glitz or talent could overshadow that most captivating feeling that is at the heart of every great story. Love. I know it’s a cliché, but with love being at the centre of every great stage and story, what happens when you haven’t found it yet?
Kate Taylor , resident relationship and online dating guru, leant a hand and some hard to beat advice on how to start that story. It starts, she says, with a kick-ass profile picture. And seeing the world through lad-specs…
For all the stick that men get about not understanding women, it appears we females can be similarly clumsy at seeing the world through the other species’ eyes. ‘Lad-specs’ is the art of viewing your profile as though you were a man, and it may be the key to securing that first contact.
I’ll admit now that I am guilty of dismissing a guy for his choice of profile picture. It was a selfie. And in my perfect reasoning, I deduced that by choosing a selfie, (and not one with friends, or out drinking, or grinning) that he probably: i) didn’t have friends, ii) didn’t go out, iii) took himself too seriously, and v) had such a penchant for his own face that I would be fighting him for the bathroom mirror! My feminine intuition/ judgemental oversights may have been spot on. We’ll never know. But what Kate taught me was that these oversights only run one-way.
Which is actually pretty liberating! A kick-ass profile picture means one thing: She. Looks. Great! Yes it’s all about the looks, and a great love story will obviously run deeper. But for an online dating profile, we just want to start that story. The details and deductions may be what starts a story for we females, but for a guy, statistics show it’s all about the picture. So, freely liberated, yielding an all access pass to look fabulous without fear of judgement, Kate offered her insights into the male gaze…
Flirty selfie’s are your friend, no duck face, but no teeth either. Remember, for all the infinite shapes and sizes out there, there is someone who’s going to love yours perfectly. You just have to… you know…actually have your size and shape visible! Cleavage for the under the 30s is completely up to you, but for the over 30s adding a tasteful suggestion of your most powerful asset is an absolute must. Not in every picture, and only ever what you feel comfortable with, but profiles with that most coveted allure (however big or small) put the over 30s on par with 18 year olds! Full length pics are also a must. As is, conversely, a sneak peak teaser picture: think holiday picture of your legs stretching out beneath you…or the nape of your neck with profile just out of shot (you art-house temptress!).
Consider your light carefully, a summer afternoon snap can do wonders for the skin. Similarly, flash may be your enemy, adding on average 7 years to your picture! Group pictures are a big no-no. Which is obvious once the lad-specs are on because: “I can’t see what you look like!” More bizarrely is that pictures where alcohol is on show were snap suicide. We’re not sure why, but the statistics are unanimous. Drinks kill pictures.
Now you have their attention…and the stories already beginning. Kate suggests using match.com’s generous 20 picture quota to showcase some activities you and your profile viewer could do together…ok maybe not everything you would do together. A don’t-you-wish-you-were-here montage will give any potential match ample confidence to open a dialogue with you, and even more, they’ll have a few first date ideas to wow you with.
Lights. Camera. Action!