DISCLAIMER: Everyone who contributed to this discussion happened to be heterosexual women, so these answers will be inspired by the profiles of heterosexual men, but many are equally applicable to people of other genders or orientations. If you’d like to answer this question in regards to people other than heterosexual men, leave a comment!
Bumble, Tinder, OKCupid, Match.com. The League, Happn – the list goes on and on and on – and we all know they’re a big thing among millennials these days. In this moment, we’re not here to try and tell you whether that’s a good or bad thing. It just so happens that a decent percentage of the MissMuslim team has used one or more of these apps at least once, so we wanted to tackle some big questions: What makes you swipe left? What cues on someone’s profile – be they profound or shamefully shallow – make you say “no thanks?” AND, what intrigues you to the point of a right swipe? Some of our writers shared their answers.
Meet Dalia, Rima, Leilah, Jenna, Luna, Cindy, Kayla and Bassema (names changed in an effort to respect swipers anonymity).
What makes you swipe left?
1. Having No Bio
Dalia: “I really don’t get why people do this. You’re a total stranger, you’re trying to present who you are as a person, and you decide to go on your pictures alone (especially when it’s just one picture?) Nah. I don’t care how hot you are – if I can’t get even the smallest glimpse of how you represent yourself in your own words, Imma assume the worst about your personality.”
Jenna: “Are you assuming you can reel in matches with your looks alone, or are you just being lazy or…?”
2. Evidence of a Fragile Masculinity Complex
Jenna: “If you’re conspicuously trying to prove how manly you are, that’s a major deal-breaker. Knowing who you are as an individual and being comfortable in your gender and not feeling the need to performatively prove it based on archaic stereotypes is really, really attractive.”
Dalia: “Oof, yes. Like, if something about you naturally fits within gendered expectations, that’s totally fine, but also totally different.”
3. Basic Bios
Leilah: “Dude, we all love Netflix, tacos/pizza, adventures, and (for those of us who drink) craft beer. But if everything you list is generic, and you don’t even say it in some interesting way, it leads me to assume that there’s not much about your personality that’s interesting or intelligent.”
4. Proclamations of Love for Jesus Christ
Cindy: “I’ve got absolutely nothing against Christianity or any religion, so long as it’s not being used to harm and oppress people. And if your faith is important and meaningful to you, I respect that. But if you’re the kind of dude who gives a shout out to JC or throws down Bible verses (or Quran quotes) in your bio on an app mainly designated for ‘hook-ups,’ I’m going to venture a guess that you and I probably aren’t the best match for each other. And I’m not so sure JC would approve of you using his words to help you get laid.”
5. Evidence of Being Conservative
Bassema: “Just another incidence of values not matching up. If you’re not fully down with basic human rights for everyone – including marginalized populations – that’s an unconditional no. If you’re tweeting #AllLivesMatter or #MakeAmericaGreatAgain, trust and believe I don’t want to see your peen.”
Rima: “Yeah, if I get the sense that you’re a Trump supporter, there’s literally nothing in this great wide world that will get me to swipe right.”
Bassema: “People say politics shouldn’t matter, but as a woman and a Muslim, it’s kinda important to me that you believe in my right to be treated as an equal human being.”
6. A Million Pictures With Other People in Them
Kayla: “You are greatly over-estimating my ability to tell which one is you in each picture. Even if you have a cool bio, I’m not going to sit there with a magnifying glass trying to play Where’s Waldo for fifteen minutes. I’ve got a life to live.”
7. Passive-Aggressive Bio Content
Dalia: “You typically have just 300-500 characters to represent who you are as a person. I understand that it’s frustrating when people do annoying things like match with you but never talk to you. But if you take up space in your bio to whine about it by saying something like ‘Why swipe right and never send a message??’ or ‘6’4, cause apparently you girls really care about that,’ it’s a sign of a whiny, passive-aggressive, and potentially entitled personality on the whole.”
8. Evidence of Being a Bro
Cindy: “I don’t know about you, but I catch onto bro vibes immediately on people’s profiles. And you can miss me with that frat boy nonsense 100% of the time.”
Luna: “Bye Chad.”
9. Three Words: Shirtless. Mirror. Selfies.
Luna: “Speaking of bros: this ish was tacky even on MySpace in 2007. Even if you’re the hottest person in the world, the douchey shirtless mirror selfie will immediately cancel out your attractiveness.”
10. Sleaze of Any Kind
Jenna: “We’ve all dealt with sexual harassment in the real world and via dating apps. We’ve gotten very good at picking up on signs of pushiness, entitlement, not respecting women as humans, etc… All of which are obviously an immediate deal-breaker. Especially in dealing with strangers, I err on the side of caution when it comes to any sign of creepiness.”
“I err on the side of caution when it comes to any sign of creepiness.”
11. References to Golf
Bassema: “There are a million activities and interests to choose from in this world and you chose the one for bougie white dads. Nooope.”
Luna: “Yeah, I dunno if I’d call it a deal-breaker for me, but it is mind-numbingly boring and not a real sport, so…”
What makes you swipe right?
Rima: “A clever, witty sense of humor.”
Kayla: “A sense of a cool, unique personality with compatible interests.”
Bassema: “Well-roundedness and being genuine.”
Luna: “Having your ish together as a functional adult to a certain degree, having cool interests, coming off as respectful.”
Dalia: “I don’t think it’s shallow to state the obvious: attractiveness. Though, I’m learning more and more that different people have different ideas of ‘attractive.’ Like, I love a good full beard on a guy, but apparently [Luna] thinks beards are gross.”
Jenna: “Being straightforward about what you honestly want, whether it’s a fling or a platonic friendship or a relationship.”
Cindy: “Not taking yourself too seriously. A little goofy ridiculousness or well-played sarcasm goes a long way.”
Dating profiles can tell you a lot about a person – even when it doesn’t say much at all. While a majority of millennials claim to prefer to meet someone the “old fashioned way,” we acknowledge that most of us just don’t have time to do it – so we resort to apps and websites (which is totally OK). Date however you wanna date.
So, ladies – we say, SWIPE ON.
And if you happened to be swiping too fast, don’t worry – we’ve all had that “I MEANT LEFT” moment. Thankfully an “undo” button has now been incorporated into the system (but apparently you have to pay for it?).