I SPENT ONE MONTH ON HINGE SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO

Dating is irritating, thrilling, scary and fun all rolled into one big ball of anxiety filled emotions. My good friend and I discuss dating highs and lows often with one another. She happily teeters between real life meet cutes and online dating. When she told me to just try using one dating app for a month and not delete the app until the month was over, I failed. Last year I deleted the dating app I begrudgingly downloaded to my phone within one week. This time, I was determined to give it one full month and I am glad I did. I spent one month on Hinge so you don’t have to.

Are you tired, run down, listless? Do you poop out at parties? Well, the answer to all your problems is not in this little app! If you love ‘I Love Lucy’ like I do, you got that reference. Hinge is not a bad app, but its features could use some help. Once you download the free app onto your phone, you are then sent to your settings which include adding pictures to your profile. After adding your pictures it makes you select a prompt to attach to your pictures. They have a prewritten selection of “witty” captions to add to your pictures. The reasoning behind this according to the app is that adding a caption will raise your level of engagement.

After painstakingly choosing your profile pictures (which for men did not seem too hard based on their pics) you select options like age range, distance, and if you pay for an upgrade you can fine tune the attributes you are looking for in a partner. With the pay upgrade comes more options to narrow down the search for your partner. There was no way I wold pay for this app, so I applied three must haves to my account which is also an option: open minded, no smoking, and vaccinated. Hey, what do you want from me, I am not willing to risk COVID for love. Immediately the likes started to come in which turned out to be very underwhelming.

There is something alluring and exciting about getting the notifications that you have been “liked” by someone. It releases the same endorphins we are all addicted to when our pictures are liked on Instagram, or when we receive a retweet on Twitter, and a comment on our TikTok videos. The psychology has been proven to elicit immediate gratification from us, as it is literally formed to create an addictive response from within our brains. To circumnavigate this addiction I kept the Hinge dating app on the third page of my phone. Not seeing it everyday on my home screen kept me from swiping constantly and finding validation from some random dude liking my pics. I suggest this for you as well.

The matches were based on pretty much nothing but me selecting I was open to any race of men within 25 miles of me. That’s it. Hinge would pick super likes, and suggest they were the most compatible man for me, but there was not one guy on the app that was actually the most compatible from their offerings. How the algorithm works is beyond me as it seems to not really have anything specific. The men ranged in ages I picked and mileage, other than that…nothing. There was a lot of misogyny, lifeless conversations, and men who wanted me to start the conversations first (on the app it’s called you making the first move), which I refused to do. I am no longer willing to put more effort into a man than the effort he is giving me. Of course this does not represent all of the men on Hinge, but this was my experience with men ranging in ages between 30-45, all races, non smokers, and in Los Angeles.

Most of the men on the app were short on conversation, but hella long on audacity. Making sure to always state how women shouldn’t be: fat, wearing makeup, have big opinions, kids etc. The voice feature is something Hinge added and the men left noises, messages and songs ranging from slurping, burping, dad jokes, and singing. Absolutely bonkers feature that yields glorious results because you can weed out the crazies faster! Within the month I did not find any matches that went beyond in app messaging that would end with the guy not keeping the conversation going, and lacking in basic conversational skills. Lots of cuties, funny guys and equally many not so funny, kinda creepy men. This goes with life period. Whether in person or online, meeting someone new and deciding to actually date them is a gamble. Hinge is not for me, but I hope you can use this app or any dating app safely and with fun. How has online/app dating experiences worked for you? Sound off in the comments section below!

DATING APP TIPS:

Never give your home address to anyone.

Use the in app features to message and video chat with someone until you are comfortable providing them with your phone number.

Do not allow anyone to pick you up from home/work.

Always get your dates first and last name. If your date gives pushback on this. Red flag on the play. Do not meet them.

Share your location with family members/friends when on your date.

Meet your app date in a public area not within your neighborhood.

Screenshot their profile before your date. Many offenders will delete their profile and any ties back to them.

If you feel uncomfortable at any time while on your date, leave immediately. No explanation needed.

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