Tinder is a heavily photo-based dating app. People swipe based on your first photo and not everyone bothers to check out your other photos if your first one is terrible. So essentially, knowing what pictures to put on Tinder can make or break your online dating experience.
That's easy, right? Just get a friend to take your photo with some good lighting and a nice outfit, and that should be fine, right? Sure, if you're adding a photo to your resume. Tinder is the biggest dating app on the planet, with more than 75 million active users each month. But it's also full of guys who put in the bare minimum effort when it comes to their pictures... and that gets them maybe one or two dates a MONTH. You don't want to be that guy.
In this article, we'll talk about how you can stand out on Tinder through your photos. We'll give you tips on what pictures catch women's attention and which one you should never EVER put on your profile.
The Importance of Choosing Pictures for Tinder
The brutal truth about Tinder – which you should know from just 10 minutes of using the app – is that it’s all about the looks. Choosing the right pictures for Tinder is something more men should be thinking of.
The male to female ratio on Tinder – according to recent reports – is 9 to 1. This means that more men are competing for fewer women, which also means that unless your photos are way above average, you will rarely get enough likes. One really good photo on Tinder can send your results to the roof with tons of likes. And this is exactly why you need to know what pictures to put on Tinder.
Just recently, a guy from one of our secret Facebook groups emulated a Maxim cover on his Tinder profile. He worked out really hard for a year, then took a black and white photo of him posing half-naked in a certain position. He saw it on Maxim and said why not. After a few tries, he put that photo on Tinder with a short bio.
Women went crazy and Tinder flooded him with +200 likes, mostly from hot women. His quote was something like, “if matches were beer, then this is my St. Patrick’s Day.” Most of those who liked his photos were hot, young chicks looking for some fun, and they were down to going out pretty soon with minimum flakes.
What if your photos are crap but you have a great Tinder bio?
Stats that track Tinder users’ behavior show that almost 80 percent of women swipe on only 20 percent of men. whereas men tend to swipe on a wide range of women regardless of how hot they appear.
This means that a Tinder bio – no matter how well-written – will do nothing if they're backed with excellent photos.
Tinder reports show that women tend to read more bios than men, but for a slightly different reason. They use it to filter between the guys whose looks they already like, and they just want to make sure that they swipe right on someone they like based on BOTH looks and personality. Just like you, she will need to like your photos first and then, and only then, read through your bio and make a final decision.
Women will often use your photos to tell your:
- Fitness level - They want a guy who's at least somewhat fit (or doesn't look like a slob, at least)
- Interests and hobbies - She wants to know if you’re fun to hang out with
- Relationship goals - Are you reliable or not? Relationship material or fuckboy?
How Many Tinder photos Should You Put in Your Profile?
How many pictures on Tinder should you use? How many Tinder photos turns off women?
The quick answer is three or four photos are enough to make your profile attractive.
You don't need too many pictures on your Tinder profile to make a good impression. These are enough to convey who you are without looking like a try-hard.
Using more than four photos may cause more damage since it gives you a lot of room for error (more on what photos to avoid later). Imagine she likes your first four photos, goes to the fifth and sees a bad angle that makes you like tired and kinda creepy. LEFT SWIPE.
Some women also think that guys who use +4 photos are either self-centered, or they put too much effort into Tinder. Not to say that putting some effort into Tinder is bad. You just don't want to seem like you're too invested in your online dating profile.
What Pictures to Put on Tinder
Before telling you how to choose pictures for tinder, let's talk about how attraction works.
Since the beginning of time, women desire two main things: Protection and provision.
These are some of the things women look for in a man (whether for a hookup or a serious relationship) and why they're important to women:
She wants a strong guy: To protect her and her offspring. Whether you're tall or fit, these are traits women are hard-wired to look for in a man. It goes back to the hunter-gatherer times where strong men always ward off predators while providing for their family.
Who's good-looking: He will pass his healthy genes to her kids, which protects them from an early death.
And has money: To both provide and buy protection when needed
And hopefully has status and leadership skills: If people follow him then they must like/respect him, which makes him an important part of the community.
And to top if off... he makes her laugh: It means he has all the protection and provision bases covered, and he also has a fun personality that makes her want to be in his company.
And so on…
Women don’t want the boring average Joe. They don't want the nice guy who has nothing else to offer. Women have more options now and you need to not just stand out but stand out to the women you're looking to attract.
I had an excellent Tinder photo with a cigar in my mouth that looked alpha as F***. A friend, who also happens to be a pro photographer, took it for me at a bar and we both thought it was so good my DMs will be flooded with women the next day.
But that didn’t happen.
My matches didn’t spike, and many of my new likes were girls who liked guys who were rough around the edges. I even had a suspicious MILF ask me to take a photo of my teeth because she thought I had a problem with them since I didn’t smile in any of my 4 pictures.
So does my cigar photo embody what photos to put on Tinder? Yes and no.
Yes, because I got likes from women who were into the whole rugged Robert Downey Junior look. And no, because not all women are into that. It was a polarizing photo that got me certain types of women, but it didn't work on other women I was attracted to.
Any photos you use on Tinder should convey one, or more, of the following traits: Physical strength, humor, status, and safety/kindness.
You basically need these four photos on Tinder:
A full-body photo (Essential)
She wants to know how tall and well-built you are. Cropping the bottom half of the photo may make you look good, but it's a common technique shorter men use to look taller. Instead, why not check out some tips for how to take photos where you look taller.
A portrait (Essential)
If you're scrambling to find what pictures to use on Tinder and you're wondering which one should be your first photo, the portrait is the answer. Get a photographer for this one and test several angles. No one likes to be catfished and a portrait will show her that she’ll get just what she signed up for. Smile with a confident look in your eyes as if you got a top Victoria’s Secret model naked in your bed. It always works for me.
A high-status photo (Not a must, but still important)
Status can be irrelevant depending on your goal. It will matter if you want a relationship and aim for girls between 27 and 35 (and sometimes older). So if you want to look like a high-status guy, you can do this through different ways in a full-body photo.
For example, walking off a private plane (had a client post this on Tinder and it was a game-changer), singing on stage or playing guitar in a band, putting on a tux or a white classic shirt on dressy pants in a fancy bar, winning a medal in some competition.
Martial arts and army photos also convey status and protection. I had girls tell me they swiped on me right after they saw my dojo photo. It sparks a basic instinct in them.
Something to prove you’re fun to be with
Anything that says you’ve hot fun hobbies. Doing something cool with your friends, saying a toast at a wedding (also demonstrates leadership), surfing, snowboarding, mountain climbing, racing, playing golf, doing dance moves
Dog/animal photos are also great. Women like animals, especially dogs, so you’ll identify with a wide range of them. The second benefit is that it shows you as a dominant/master and a caring person at the same time.
But what if you don’t own a pet?
Borrow one. I don’t own a dog, but I borrowed my best friend’s 3 huskies for a day and had a friend take different photos of me playing with them. Having 3 strong and bossy-ass huskies strapped around my waist while I’m feeding them was dominant AF and also showed the caring/relationship-oriented part in me, which many girls look for.
What Pictures You Should NEVER Put on Tinder
No list of what pictures to put on Tinder would be complete without a list of the photos you should NEVER include. These photos either turn women off or give the wrong impression.
The worst thing you can ever do is use a group photo as your first Tinder choice. It confuses girls who won’t know which one are you. Also, many girls find cropping or blanking your friend’s/girlfriend’s faces on a photo disrespectful. It also shows that you don’t have many good photos and had to ruin a good one because you don’t have any. The only exception to this is when you include a group photo as a 3rd or 4th photo to show off a fun hobby.
Babies are cute, but not on Tinder. Most women won’t stop much to read your bio or figure out whether this baby is yours or someone else’s. They’ll swipe left right away without giving you the chance if they don't want to date a guy with a kid. You can still, however, make a baby photo look fun if you edit it and add some text that says “Not mine :D” It's fun and will disassociate you from looking like a single dad.
Photos with the same outfit
Even if it’s your most favorite item or makes you feel like prime Chris Evans, don’t wear the same outfit twice, not even the same watch or shoes. If all your photos include the exact same outfit, it looks like you had a photoshoot specifically for Tinder.
Photos at the same location
It also gives the impression that you paid for a pro photoshoot just to go on Tinder. Yes, they know it’s true but they don’t wanna be with a try-hard.
Heavily edited photos
Women use more filters than men do, however, try to take one or two shots with little or no filters. And only use filters that are barely noticeable. Any heavy editing will make you look vain.
It says you’re a loner with nobody to hold the camera for you. The only exception is a really precious memory or you were doing something impressive, like hiking on top of a mountain or surfing, and you had to take a selfie.