If a picture is worth a thousand words, it’s worth approximately 15,000 on an online dating site, where that and a short bio are the only tools at one’s disposal to help determine whether someone is an eligible match. I’ve seen some cringe-worthy photos in my months of online dating, some of which make me question the sanity and intelligence of the xy chromosome as a whole.
For your viewing pleasure (or displeasure), I’ve narrowed it down to the five most common photographic offenses that baffle me, bug me, and mostly just freak me out. Gentlemen of the dating world: please heed my advice and avoid posting these types of pictures at all costs. If I never see another one, it will be too soon.
- Self shot in your bathroom mirror– I cannot even tell you how many of these are out there. I could start a tumblr exclusively featuring this type of picture and literally keep it going for years. Guys, if your sink, your shower curtain or God forbid, your toilet is visible in a photo, please reconsider. Also, the dudes who post these are almost always repeat offenders; four shots in a row where I can identify not only that you have a Droid Galaxy II but also what brand of shaving cream you use is a bit much. You’re telling me you don’t have one decent photo that someone else took of you at some point in the past year? Or a friend who’s willing to help you out? Now I’m just sad for you.
- Photo with your ex-girlfriend (or for all I know, your current girlfriend)— Seriously? You’re on an online dating site. In what universe does it sound like a good idea to post a picture of you canoodling with some girl? Also, I’m sure your ex would be thrilled to know that a picture of her in pjs with no makeup on is being used to help you score dates on the internet. You’re exactly the type of guy I’m dying to go out with! Bonus if the dude blocks out just his ex-girlfriend’s face from every picture. ‘A’ for effort, sir, but did you know you can cut her entire body out? It’s this newfangled thing called the crop tool.
- Pic of you and a child (WITHOUT caption)— Look. I love kids and babies. If you post a picture of yourself holding your adorable baby niece, I promise it will make my ovaries tingle. But if you don’t TELL ME whose child that is in the comment section or on your profile, am I wrong in assuming she’s yours? No, no I’m not. So do me a favor and let me know whether or not you’re a baby daddy, would you? Mystery is overrated.
- Shirtless pic– Please. Save that shit for Craigslist.
- Masks/inexplicable costumes–I mean… Honorable mentions: professional head shots (calm down, this isn’t LA), severely pixellated/blurry/far away shots (are you hiding a terrible skin disease? Do you have leprosy?), pictures featuring the middle finger and/or the shocker (so charming! See photo #1)