December 3rd, 2010

Dater Unknown: Photos to Avoid if You Wanna Make Out

Last Friday we showed you the treasure trove of online dating site options provided by our good friend, the Information Superhighway. So, let’s say you’ve decided to take the plunge. Congratulations! Now comes time for one of the most important parts of your online dating profile – your pictures.

I mean, let’s be honest, folks. We are all books-by-their-cover-judgers when it comes to, well, most things. You can have the wittiest/smartest/soulmate-est things to say in your profile, but if your pictures give the creepy vibe, you may be warming up the bench for a while longer.

We at The Loop Scoop fancy ourselves as matchmakers. Finding you a few strangers to make out with is our specialty, so we have some picture pointers. Help us help you put your best face forward by being selective and thoughtful in your profile picture – and by avoiding being placed in one of the categories below.

Note: This installment is going to focus on photos of gents.

The Tylenol PM
The Tylenol PM is a fan of the self portrait. Such a big fan, in fact, that the photos they use to woo potential mates are photos they take with their phone or webcam at home, in the bathroom or in the car, and never, ever smiling. The message these photos send is: A date with me is like taking a Tylenol PM. Oh, and I’m lazy to boot.

The Tylenol PM can take many forms. Sometimes he’s sitting in the car with his seat belt still on. Sometimes he’s in his grey cube at work (hello Tylenol PM overdose). Sometimes there’s a twofer – one photo from the left side and one photo from the right side. And many times it’s a reflection in his bathroom’s mirror. My favorite was a guy who took a close-up of his face with his webcam and had a huge wad of dip in his mouth. Wow. Nothing says “love at first sight” like a creepy webcam shot with a side of Grizzly.

Okay, let’s say you don’t have a single photo you can use and have no option but to take the picture yourself. Ugh, fine. But for the love of Dr. Neil Clark Warren, please smile or smirk or show some kind of inviting facial expression. You may think you are rocking the come hither look, but in reality your blank stare just makes you look like you are standing in line at the DMV.

Dating sites are teeming with Tylenol PMs. I know technology makes it easy to take your photo and have it up in a few moments, but trust me when I say your chances of ending the dry spell will be better if you upload something that doesn’t remind people of taking sleeping pills.

The Dorian Gray
A cousin of the Tylenol PM, the Dorian Gray is also a fan of the self portrait photo shoot in the reflection of the bathroom mirror. The big difference is that Dorian Grays are always topless. Their reflection makes them weak in the knees, so why mess with a vacation shot when you can come out with guns blazing – and flexed to show off that vein that’s finally showing through the bicep?

And sometimes, when he really wants to drive his point home, a Dorian will finagle a full body shot in the bathroom mirror while donning his favorite boxer briefs and shooting his best Blue Steel. This is where I usually would faceplant on my laptop, weeping at the futility of it all.

Don’t get me wrong, Dorians tend to have a body worth showcasing (although, there are always exceptions. I’m looking at you, ‘roid freak). But their blatant, embarrassing showcasing is so…boring. Ladies, if you have a penchant for 24 Hour Fitness and chicken breasts, give the Dorian Gray a go. Just be prepared to spend your first date talking about his favorite subject – him (okay, and which Darque Tan has the best beds).

The Buffalo Bill
Let’s say you have just put up a good, solid primary photo of yourself. High five! Your inviting smile is already starting to lure the ladies.

And then.

Then, for reasons which remain unclear, you decide to go off the reservation with photo #2. Maybe you feel the need to set yourself apart and this is the way to do it, or maybe you like the way your eyes look in that picture. But THIS photo says one thing – “Hi, I’m a creepshow.”
Some examples of the creepshow picture are:

- You with a few cat condos in the background
- You surrounded by action figures
- You with your dog – and your tongues are touching

I once received an email from a guy whose repertoire included a picture of him sitting on the toilet in a bathroom. It was from the waist up, but you could see the shower curtain on his left, magazines behind him, and the curve of a Scope bottle on his right.

With bleeding eyes, I said aloud in my best Buffalo Bill voice, “It rubs the lotion on its skin or it gets the hose again.” You picking up what I’m throwing down? Your pics shouldn’t make the viewer picture being in a well holding Precious.

So, my suggestion? Stick with the tried-and-trues. A good picture of you solo. You with family and/or friends. You hanging with your dog. You on vacation. A shot of you doing something you like doing (a picture you could show your grandma). Even if you just have one of these photos, go ahead and click upload and watch as the ladies flood your In Box.

— Dater Unknown


Benjy — Friday, December 3, 2010 10:20 pm

Ha. This is really hilarious. Great tips! Thanks.

Liz — Saturday, December 4, 2010 3:53 am

Love it! Great advice – we’ve all seen these! Will there be a version of this for the ladies?

Whitney — Sunday, December 5, 2010 8:20 pm

“Your pics shouldn’t make the viewer picture being in a well holding Precious”…brilliant. Your writing is as witty and charming as ever. Keep it up!

Marisa — Monday, December 6, 2010 10:34 am

This is sooooo true it’s not even funny- but you are!!!!

Me — Monday, December 6, 2010 1:40 pm

I made the mistake of reading this in class, while my classmates were presenting on Schlimberger….I started crying I was laughing so hard….

Me — Monday, December 6, 2010 1:40 pm

I made the mistake of reading this in class, while my classmates were presenting on Schlumberger….I started crying I was laughing so hard….

Master Dater — Monday, December 6, 2010 9:08 pm

Liz: Yes, I plan on writing a piece directed to help our lady friends out. Stay tuned!

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