Everybody wants to put their best foot forward when it comes to their online dating profile. Unfortunately, not all of us are Bill Shakespeare or some other famous writer with complete command of the English language. And even if we are good at writing, online dating profiles mean writing about ourselves, which is a whole other thing!
Here’s the good news. You are not alone. The majority of people trying online dating feel completely clueless when it comes to how to write their dating profile. For many, it’s a brand new, never-before-done event that can be scary because it requires you to be vulnerable.
But here’s some even better news. It doesn’t have to be that hard. Once you know how to write a dating profile the right way, it’s actually pretty easy (and dare we say fun!).
In this guide, we’re going to walk you through the exact steps needed to knock it out of the park. We’ll share a ton of helpful resources that’ll leave you feeling like the Bill Shakespeare of dating profiles when you get done!
Table of Contents:
- The Overall Goal of a Dating Profile
- Overview – How to Write a Dating Profile: Step by Step
- Picking a Good Username for Dating Sites
- How to Write a Dating Profile Headline
- How to Write a Successful About Me or Bio Section
- How to Write the What I’m Looking For Section
- Successful Dating Profile Tips
- Biggest Online Dating Profile Mistakes to Avoid
- Dating Profile FAQ
The Overall Goal of a Dating Profile
Please, please, please do not just gloss over this section—it’s important. There is a huge misunderstanding when it comes to the overall purpose and goal of a dating profile. Most people believe that the goal is to make the best dating profile ever that attracts the most attention from the highest caliber singles out there.
This is flat-out wrong. Online dating is not a competition. It’s not a race to see who can rack up the most likes, messages, and dates. The goal of online dating is to find the right person for you. It’s that simple. If you write your dating profile trying to target quantity over quality, you’re going to have a bad time.
Should you put your best foot forward? Absolutely! However, it should be your best foot forward. If someone you’re incompatible with comes to your dating profile and doesn’t send you a message, that’s a win! It saves you time, money, and potential heartache.
Here’s the bottom line.
Don’t write your dating profile with the goal of attracting the most attention. Write your dating profile with the goal of attracting the right person who is perfect for you.
And what this looks like in practicality is this. (Note: We will touch on all of these a lot more throughout the guide).
- Don’t exaggerate or fib about who you are and what uniquely makes you—you.
- Be clear about what you’re looking for even if it’s not going to get you the most attention.
- Don’t compare your dating profile with other men or women to see “how you stack up.”
- Solely focus on putting your best foot forward. Period.
Overview – How to Write a Dating Profile: Step by Step
With the “paperwork” out of the way, it’s time to dive headfirst into exactly how to write a dating profile. What we wanted to do first was give you the 10,000-foot overview of what the process looks like. We’ll outline the steps here and then in the coming sections we’re going to dive into the details and the exact how-to of it all.
- Join an online dating site. – You can’t write a dating profile without being part of a dating site or app. Here’s a link to some of the best dating apps out there if you need a hand.
- Choose a username. – This is an often overlooked step but an important one as many online dating apps show your username alongside your actual name. And even on the sites that don’t, it may be in the web address bar, so still important.
- Write a good dating profile headline. – When it’s an option, this is the first thing that people see when you’re shown on an online dating app. If you don’t have a great profile headline, you might not get clicks to your profile, or you might set the wrong tone from the start turning off quality singles.
- Write the best about me bio for you possible. – The next step is the one that often proves the most challenging for people. This is where you write a few sentences or paragraphs describing yourself and what makes you—you. Don’t worry; the bulk of this guide
- Add some great photos. – The one thing we won’t be covering in this particular guide is your photos, but we do have plenty of great guides to help you with that in our profile advice section.
- Review and update as needed. – Once you’ve completed the first five steps, you’re almost there! The last step is to review your profile and view it in the mindset of someone else. It may also be a good idea to have a few friends who know you well to read through and give you honest feedback. And lastly, keep your profile up to date as needed!
Now that you have a good overview of the major steps on how to write a dating profile, it’s time to get into the specifics and showcase some dating profile examples.
Picking a Good Username for Dating Sites
Some online dating apps just have you use your email address for your account or log in through social media (like with Facebook). If that’s the case, you don’t have to worry about picking out a good username. The majority of those apps only use your first name when showing your profile to other users.
But if you are given the opportunity to select a username for your account, you should put a little bit of thought into it. Many dating apps still don’t share this information with other users, but some do. And for that reason, it’s important to choose a username that says the right message about you.
For example, if you were looking for a serious man to date, would you message someone named XboxFarts_11? Probably not. Or if you were looking for a sweet woman to take home to meet your family one day, would you message HomeWrecker_88? Again, we’d hope not.
Here are some tips to pick the best dating profile username.
- Upgrade from your childhood. – A lot of people have fun screen names for other accounts from when they were younger. However, it’s important to note you’re an adult now. While you can still have fun, make it age-appropriate.
- Don’t use anything sexual or inappropriate. – Seriously, even if you’re looking for something casual and with someone with a similar sense of humor, it’s never a good idea to lead off with something raunchy.
- Keep security in mind. – Just make sure you don’t put something personally identifiable in your username you’re not interested in sharing with everyone. For example, if you’re a nurse who works at a particular hospital, don’t include the name of the hospital in your username.
- Special characters are your friend. – If you think of something simple and awesome, the chances are high that it’s probably taken. But if you look to use special characters, you can get a lot of things to work. For example, let’s say you want to be “BeachGirl” but it’s taken. You could try “Beach_Girl” or “BeachGirl!” or something like that to make it work.
- Don’t try to be too clever. – Yes, we are huge fans of witty, funny, and clever dating profiles and usernames. However, this is a spot where it’s best to just get something nice and not overthink it. Remember, as well, you may understand the wittiness of your username, but people who might be great matches might not get it just by reading it.
- Give it the sniff test. – What we mean by this is to look at your username to make sure it’s not accidentally inappropriate. This is something that happens a lot with vanity license plates. For example, The mom who went to North Carolina State for college (NC State) who thought it was cool to make her license plate NCST – MOM….yea, she missed on that one. Or the good sweet Mrs. Hart who wanted to have her name on there as MRSHART…without the period, people might start to assume this is a Mr.
If you need ideas, start by making a list of the things you like to do and any other descriptive words that you think are applicable to you. Start putting them together to find something unique you like. In the end, though, don’t overthink it so hard that you get burnout before even getting to the really important parts of the profile writing process.
How to Write a Dating Profile Headline
Often known as the introduction, headline, tagline, or even teaser by some people, the dating profile headline is a one to two-sentence section that goes at the top of your profile. On many dating apps, it’s also shown in the gallery of users as a means of helping users decide which singles’ profiles they want to click on.
In other words, the dating profile headline is your quick teaser to try and either entice someone to click on your profile or entice them to read your profile.
There are several ways you can approach this section. Here are some suggestions:
Use Quotes or Song Lyrics
One of the easiest ways to master this section of the dating profile is just to use a famous quote. It can be from a favorite movie, TV show, song lyrics, or from someone famous. Just make sure you put the quote in quotation marks so the other users are aware that it’s a quote.
And when picking out a quote, be thoughtful about what you’re trying to convey with that quote and what someone other than you might interpret it as.
For example, if Scarface is your favorite movie and you use the quote, “Say hello to my little friend.” You might think that’s awesome, but someone who hasn’t seen the movie might think it’s sexual or weird. Or, if they have seen the movie, they might be turned off because it’s a scene before he kills a bunch of people in front of a mound of drugs. Yes, we think the movie is awesome, but be aware of what you’re trying to accomplish and how others might interpret it.
Keep It Simple
There’s nothing wrong with writing a dating profile headline that’s simple.
One of the best formulas for doing so is just putting what you are followed by what you’re looking for.
Can it really be that easy? It is! Here are some examples.
If you’re a young professional man looking for a sweet person to date, your headline could be…Young professional man looking for someone sweet.
It’s really that easy. Maybe you’re a strong Christian woman looking for your soul mate. Your dating profile headline could be…Jesus lover looking for my soul mate.
Or heck, you can even get creative but still simple with it if you want. Maybe you’re a woman who loves to work out and wants someone with shared interests. Your headline could read…Fitness-loving woman looking for her swole mate.
Tips for a Great Dating Profile Headline
Here are some additional thoughts to consider when writing your dating profile headline.
- Don’t undersell yourself. – Avoid using words like plain, boring, ordinary, regular, etc. You are more than those things. If you downplay who you are, you won’t have much luck enticing someone to click on your profile or keep reading.
- Don’t oversell yourself. – On that same token, this isn’t the time to showcase your ego, lie, or come across as too over the top. Avoid complimenting yourself too much or describing yourself in a way that isn’t flattering.
- Don’t talk about how you look. – As a continuation of the last two tips, it’s best to avoid talking about how you look. “Jacked guy” or “Sexy woman” or “Overweight guy” or “Tall man” all just don’t do you any good.
- Don’t make it too long. – Short is sweet is the ideal phrase here. Don’t make it so long that no one reads it or it looks bad when it’s shown in the gallery of other users. Many sites will impose a length limit which probably takes care of this, but some may not.
How to Write a Successful About Me or Bio Section
And now we’ve arrived at the biggest piece of your online dating profile. The about me section (also known as your bio) is the area of your dating profile where you have to describe yourself. It’s the section where most people get the most stuck and have no idea what to write.
If that sounds like you, we’ve got you covered. We’re going to approach this in a few ways. First, we’re going to give you a template you can literally copy if you want and fill in your information. While we don’t recommend this as the ideal option, it is one that will work. After that, we’re going to talk the dos and don’ts of writing your about me section and close with some tips to help you get it right.
Dating Profile Template – About Me
If you’re looking for a fill-in-the-blanks template for your dating profile bio, here’s something that will work. If you do choose to use this, try and tweak it a little bit to fit you best. The words in parenthesis are little ways you can mix things up to sound a bit different.
Hey (Hi/Hey you!/Hey there!/Etc.)! My name is (your name). I’m originally from (where you’re originally from), but I’ve been living in (your current city) for (however many years) now. I’m a big fan of (I like/I enjoy/etc.) (insert 2-3 things that you like to do). (Spot for additional sentences mentioned below) If it sounds like we might hit it off (might be a good match/might click/etc.) send me a message!
So, here’s what that would look like. Let’s say your name is Mark and you’re originally from Texas but you live in Florida now for six years. You like to water ski, go to the beach, and read. Here’s what that might look like from our dating profile template.
“Hey there! My name is Mark. I’m originally from Texas, but I’ve been living in Florida for about six years now. I enjoy water skiing, going to the beach, and reading. If it sounds like we might be a good match, send me a message!”
And if you want to add to that, you could include a line or two in the area we marked for additional sentences. These could include:
- Your favorites of some sort. You could tie these to something you mentioned in the previous sentence if you want.
- Something you did recently that was interesting. Maybe you studied abroad, just picked up a new hobby, or went on a really cool trip.
Here’s what our sample profile might sound like if we added a sentence about Mark’s favorite books.
“Hey there! My name is Mark. I’m originally from Texas, but I’ve been living in Florida for about six years now. I enjoy water skiing, going to the beach, and reading. My favorite books are the Harry Potter series and any book on productivity. If it sounds like we might be a good match, send me a message!”
Writing Your Own Dating Profile Bio
While the template is pretty awesome, we’d still recommend writing your own dating profile bio if at all possible. One thing you can do is take the template as an outline and then change as much as you want. For those who want to do it the “right way” and write it themselves, here’s what we have for you.
First, we want to talk about what you’re trying to accomplish with your dating profile about me section. Second, we want to share a list of things you could share that answer that nagging what to write question. And lastly, we want to share a few dos and don’ts.
The Goal of Your Dating Profile Bio
The profile bio or about me section is the spot where you are trying to share enough about yourself for other singles to decide if there is a chance of compatibility. You are not trying to share your life story, tell them everything in the world about you, or get them to fall in love with you. The only purpose of the about me section of a dating profile is to get them to take the next step which is sending you a message.
What to Write About in Your Dating Profile
So, what should be included in your about me section? It’s really up to you, but here are some ideas of things to include. We’ve also marked the ones that we think are must-haves, but it’s totally up to you.
- Your first name/introduce yourself (Important)
- Where you’re originally from (Important)
- How long you’ve lived in the area (Important)
- Your interests and likes (Important)
- What you do for work (Important if not included elsewhere on your profile)
- What you’re passionate about
- What excites you about life
- If you have any pets
- If you have any kids (nothing specific about them since this is your public profile)
- What your friends typically say about you
- Anything unique or quirky about you (as long as it won’t push people away or requires a long explanation to understand)
- What you’re looking for (Important if not included in another section on your profile)
What You Should Do When Writing Your Dating Profile About Me Section
- Be honest and don’t try and exaggerate or sell yourself too hard. – People will see through this, or you risk attracting people who will lose interest once you start chatting or meet up.
- Be humble and make sure you don’t come across as an egotistical person. – We just wanted to reiterate the above point again because it’s that important.
- Use the “I” version of writing. – Example: (I am from/I enjoy). Also, make sure you don’t start every single sentence with “I” (it gets repetitive and doesn’t read well).
- Keep your profile bio updated. – If things change or you have something else awesome to add, update this! We’d suggest revisiting and at least reviewing your bio section about once a month or once every two months (shorter if you have a lot of details).
- IMPORTANT: Write in short paragraphs of only 1-3 sentences each. This is because people are not fans of reading huge walls of text. When a 5-6 sentence paragraph is read on a phone, it looks like a huge wall of text. Just hit the enter key in the middle of your longer paragraphs and you’ll get a lot more people reading your profile.
What You Should NOT Do When Writing Your Dating Profile About Me Section
- Don’t write in the third person. Example: “Mark is a big fan of running.” That’s the wrong way to do it.
- Don’t share personally identifiable information or anything that might be a security question on your other accounts. For example, if your bank security question asks what your dog’s name is, don’t have your dog’s name on your dating profile bio.
- Don’t write about your ex or past relationships. – If you just got out of a relationship or want to make sure to tell everyone you don’t take any crap from anyone, don’t. It’s a terrible look that’s going to do nothing but scare away the good ones and attract the troublemakers.
- Don’t talk about how much you don’t like writing about yourself. – No one likes talking about themselves unless they are a narcissist. Everyone gets it. Be confident, and talk about yourself in a confident (but not egotistical) manner. The “I hate talking about myself” angle has been overplayed a million times.
How to Write the What I’m Looking For Section
Some dating apps have a section where you can lay out exactly what you’re looking for and why you’re on the site. If a dating app doesn’t have this section, we recommend you include this information in your “About Me” section.
Personally, we’re huge fans of these sections because it’s a great spot to clearly set what you’re looking for and save time by not getting messages from people who aren’t looking for the same thing (as long as they read your profile).
As we did with the last section, we’d like to start with a template you can use if you’d like. From there, we’ll share some tips and ideas if you want to go it alone
What I’m Looking For Template
Here are some templates you can copy and use if you want.
- The reason I’m here is I’m looking for (insert what you’re looking for).
- What brought me to try online dating is (insert what you’re looking for).
- I’m looking for (insert what you’re looking for).
- What I’d love to find here is (insert what you’re looking for).
Wait, that’s it? Yup! It’s that simple. The second half is going to be super specific to what you’re looking for. Here are a few examples, though, in case you need some inspiration.
- I’m looking to find someone special to spend time with.
- I’m looking for a Christian man who’s interested in a faith-centered relationship.
- What brought me to try online dating was the idea of meeting someone special who’s interested in exploring a committed relationship.
You can also include what you’re NOT looking for, but you have to be very careful not to sound jaded or say something that really accomplishes nothing.
For example, saying, ” I’m not really looking for something casual. I’d prefer to find someone interested in a long-term relationship,” is great! However, saying something like, “I’m not looking for any players or people who want to mess around,” might sound fine, but is that really going to deter any of those people from contacting you? Probably not.
And even worse, if you start to talk about the bad things that have happened in your past or the way you’ve been mistreated, you’re going to scare off the good ones. “I’m tired of getting cheated on and dealing with players. If that’s you, move along.” Yea, that might make you feel good to write, but it’s not going to help you find a good man or woman.
Successful Dating Profile Tips
Now that we’ve looked at how to write each section of your dating profile individually, let’s talk some overarching tips for success.
Tell the Truth
Seriously, we can’t say enough how important this one is. Your goal is not to try and trick people into messaging you or going out with you. The goal is to find the right person who likes you for you (and that means the real, honest you). Save yourself some time and headache down the road, and tell the truth without exaggeration.
Bring Positive Energy
Yes, we know it can be hard to show emotion in writing, but it is possible! See how just by using that exclamation point in the last sentence it made it seem like we were more excited? Toss in an exclamation point here and there. And if it fits your personality, emojis are great. Also, use positive and uplifting language, and leave the Negative Nancy routine at the door.
Fill Out the Entire Profile
One of the most unattractive traits is laziness, especially when it comes to relationships. If you aren’t willing to put in the effort to fill out a complete dating profile, how is someone else supposed to believe you’re going to put in effort in a relationship? And even if that’s not true, people will think that. Take the time, invest in the process, and fill out your complete online dating profile.
Medium Length is Ideal
How long should your online dating profile be? Our answer is medium. If it’s too short, it doesn’t give enough information to entice people to message you and strike up a conversation. However, if it’s too long, people are just going to see a wall of text and read nothing. Ideally, we think the about me section should be 2-5 short paragraphs of 1-3 sentences each.
Look for Grammar and Spelling Errors
Take a few minutes and put your profile information into a Google document or Microsoft Word or some program that allows you to run a grammar check or spell check. This only takes a few seconds and can save you from looking silly on your profile and turning off people who find education and attention to detail attractive.
While writing a dating profile may sound like a lot of stressful work, it’s our goal to try and make it as fun as possible. Remember, you’re searching for someone awesome to spend some time with! That should be exciting! Try and keep the fun at the heart of it and you’re results and mood will be way better throughout the entire process.
Biggest Online Dating Profile Mistakes to Avoid
The last things we want to share before we close are the biggest mistakes people make when writing their online dating profile. You’ll have seen some of these throughout the entire guide, but we wanted to include them all in a consolidated list with several more to be aware of.
- Copying someone else’s online dating profile
- Not filling out the entire profile
- Not telling the truth
- Exaggerating or stretching the truth
- Omitting something that’s important to share
- Not updating the profile when needed
- Using inappropriate, foul, or vulgar language or jokes
- Writing each section as a wall of text, not broken up into smaller sections
- Misreading the questions to answer
- Leaving spelling or grammar mistakes
Dating Profile FAQ
How long should it take to write your online dating profile?
The time it takes to write your online dating profile depends on how fast you are of a writer and how much effort you put into the process. On average, it usually takes people about 30 minutes to an hour to set up their initial profile. Additionally, there are usually a few shorter sessions of editing after the initial setup.
Should I use a professional profile writing service for my online dating profile?
Honestly, this is really up to you. We recommend at least giving things a try with this guide, as we think we’ve made it very easy to accomplish. But if after a genuine effort you just can’t seem to get it done, you could consider paying for some professional help. Be aware, though; no matter how good of a writer you hire, it’s going to be someone who doesn’t know you at all, so you risk getting a profile that gets attention but from the wrong people.
How do I make my dating profile stand out?
You can make your dating profile stand out in one of two ways, depending on which dating app you’re using. First, if you are using a dating app that allows you to pay for highlights, you can pay an additional fee to have your profile highlighted, usually at the top of the search. Second, you can make your dating profile stand out by filling it out completely and putting in the effort to make it truly showcase the best sides of you. We cover a lot of ways to handle the second one in this guide.