Last fall, after long deliberation, I had finally made the decision to join the frustrating world of Tinder. The popular dating app is mostly used for hookups and it’s very rare to find anyone who is actually looking for a serious relationship. Yes, you can find a few articles on the Internet here and there in which a young woman will claim she met her future husband on Tinder, but the rest of us aren’t so lucky. Despite some hesitation, I created a profile. Of course, for the most part, I knew what I was getting myself into. I detailed my first impression and some of my first experiences on Tinder in an article last year. Merely a few weeks later, I had become more open to the idea that Tinder wasn’t as awful as many friends and strangers had already made it seem. I then presented a different perspective to the app in a second article, titled “The Better Side Of Tinder.”
Fast-forward to around July of this year, when I had mixed feelings about rejoining the app, for take 2 of what I’d refer to as The Dating Game. Having a decent amount of experience with the app by that point, I wasn’t feeling very optimistic about it. Swiping mostly left for hours, and gaining a few matches every other night, felt like a monotonous routine in which I had gained a habit of sending guys the first message due to a lack of patience. But also, what’s the point of matching if no one bothers to make the first move with a message?
Much to my surprise, I had a few matches which really seemed to have potential. Some were better conversationalists than others, but if a guy actually has enough interest to continue a conversation for hours throughout the day, that’s already a huge bonus. After managing to get my hopes up for a date with an Australian guy who was only in the city for a short time, it initially felt like a risk that I wasn’t sure was worth taking. The result of that was me being stood up, staring down at my phone while pacing back and forth in Central Park. It’s a moment I never want to relive. The incoming slew of apologies and excuses from this guy made my eyes want to roll back into my skull.
I did, however, experience a pleasant back and forth with another guy shortly after, who was promising at the very least. We shared numerous conversations over the span of a few weeks, but I was undoubtedly in disbelief that a guy from Tinder could hold a conversation and interest for that long. We did go on a date that went surprisingly better than expected, and I’ll spare you the details, dear reader, but there isn’t much to tell for the aftermath. A second date was on the table, and despite some planning toward it, date #2 has not happened and I still very much appreciate talking to him as friends. I will leave it at that.
Since then, I had been pondering the prospect of joining a different dating app, which my best friend has been on for the past few months. Based on her first impression and experience, I was already intrigued by the app's push in the right direction and their strong contrast with Tinder. This app, as you saw in the headline, is named OkCupid. The dating app promotes itself on the claim that it is "the only dating app that knows you're more substance than just a selfie."Already, it takes a jab at Tinder which relies heavily on swiping photos and less on the substance of one’s profile.
Immediately, within the first few steps, OkCupid gets to know the real you. Setting up your profile is not a quick process; in fact, I’m currently on day 3 and still haven’t finished answering all of the questions. On the first day, I was slightly overwhelmed by all of it. It was a huge step out of my comfort zone and it really gets down to the nitty-gritty of your preferences, likes, dislikes, etc. Aside from adding several photos, and a short bio about yourself, the profile provides a multi-faceted display of who you are by asking questions you might never have fully taken the time to ask yourself. For the profile alone, you can respond to statements which help others get to know you better, such as:
1. What I’m Doing With My Life
2. I’m Really Good At
3. Favorite Books, Movies, Shows, Music, and Food
4. Six Things I Could Never Do Without
5. I Spend A Lot Of Time Thinking About
6. On A Typical Friday Night, I Am
7. You Should Message Me If
The app prides itself on helping you find authentic relationships. It also provides you with choosing options from short-term dating, long-term dating, new friends, and hookups. I personally try to avoid matches who include the last option.
The most difficult and time-consuming portion of the process is answering the categorized questions. OkCupid displays percentages with your matches, which are based on how many responses you have in common. Of course, the higher the percentage, the better the match. The topics range from dating, ethics, religion, sex, lifestyle, and miscellaneous questions labeled ‘other.’ The more questions you answer, the more OkCupid’s algorithm will work in your favor.
Thus far, I'm rather impressed with OkCupid, from the way it displays your matches (which still involves the familiar swipe left or right), to the way it presents your profile. The vast amount of possible questions help you not only better understand the type of person you are, but also helps you match with others on a deeper level. The only flaw to the app that I should make note of is the lack of accessibility to the likes you will receive, unless you upgrade and pay money to view all of your likes. Within the span of two days, I'm shocked at how quickly I've obtained 150+ likes, but they're rather worthless until some of those guys take the chance to message me first. In this system, you have the opportunity to message first only after you both like each other and end up with a match.
If you're fed up with simply tolerating Tinder, and aren't sure what else to try, I highly recommend creating a profile with OkCupid. I'm already confident this dating app will bring me more potential prospects in the future.