How To

How To Optimize Your Tinder: Part I

By P.J. Leimgruber

Welcome To The Wonderful World of Online Dating.

That’s a weird thing to hear – right? After all, online dating is strictly for creeps and weirdos who are too socially awkward to meet people in “real life.” My, oh my, how the tables have turned. Enter Tinder, the thumbtastic app that allows people to sign in and browse profiles of users near them. Swipe left to reject them and right to indicate interest. If and when two people have swiped right on one another’s profiles – it’s a match! With 40 million daily active users and growing – Tinder is the new form of online dating for the social media generation.

It’s online dating simplified to the most organic and superficial building blocks, and there is an art to it. Simply put, it’s all about the first impression, mainly because people have little choice but to judge you by your photo and the limited information in your profile. But this is a good thing, we can leverage this… and I will show you how.


I’m going to start part one of this two-part series for the gentleman.

Tinder Tips To Know Before Getting Started

The Tinder Algorithm looks at your interests (as pulled from Facebook) to best determine if you are a match. So make sure you “like” things on Facebook that apply to you. I.e music, movies, tv shows, interests, etc. If you make a phony FB profile, you may get a lower flow of matches.

You also must understand that for men, meeting women is a numbers game. It’s the girls who get to pick and choose who they engage with. For guys, increasing your odds is about improving your physique, social status and your game… and this will come over time.

At any given time there are a great number of ladies on Tinder who are definitely down; however – this DOES NOT give you the right to objectify them right off the bat. No pics of your manhood – repeat after me – I will absolutely not send x-rated pics to girls I just met on Tinder. Remember, that you are NOT the only guy messaging this girl – there is a multitude of guys who are interested and who are messaging her as well. Chivalry is key.

How will you stand out?


How To Optimize Your Tinder: Part I


1. Identify Your Objective

It’s important to identify your main goal right off the bat. Are you here to find love, or are you here to get laid?

Women tend to view Tinder as the hook-up app, so if your goal is the latter – then this is the app for you. If you are looking for love, that’s admirable and there definitely still is value in Tinder – just be aware that the girls you attract may not be looking for the same thing. So a bit more due-diligence may be required on your part, but we will get to that later.

Simply put – here are your two goals: 1. get her attention, and 2. get her number. That’s it. And if she messages YOU first, it’s on!


2. Photos, Photos, Photos

The magic number here is four – four photos. No more, no less. Under no circumstances have any of the following in your pictures: kids (unless your over 40), grandparents, cats, and/or other women. Any of those is an instant no.

The photographs are the most crucial part of Tinder strategy, so let’s take a deeper dive into what each of these four photos should be, what they represent, and in what order they should go.

Photo #1: The Handsome Headshot

Girls have many of these, but guys have only a few. So choose wisely. The first picture should reveal your face and eyes, neck, and some of your shoulders (but no more). It needs to be the real you, not a cartoon or Halloween version of you. And the real you means the current you! If it’s more than 365 days old, it’s too old.

Word of warning – under all circumstances, have someone else take your picture for the love of God! Do not take a photo in the bathroom mirror with your phone (this is commonly known as a “selfie”). Oh, and smile. It’s okay to look friendly and approachable here. After all – the goal to meet this girl within a few hours of connecting.

If you aren’t that good looking. No worries. Don’t lie, just keep trying until you find the right picture. Angles, hats, and lighting help. A little effort goes a long way, every guy can be considered decent looking.

Tinder ProfileWhat this photo should make the girl think:

He is good looking and seems genuine. That’s it. If she is a rapid swiper, it’s all you need for her to click the green heart. If she’s a bit deeper, it will get her to swipe to photo number 2.

Photo #2: The Athletic and/or Body Shot

If you do not have an ideal physique – that’s okay. Pick a picture that shows you doing something physical with the guys and move this to photo #4.

If you have been taking care of your physique and hitting the gym, this is the time to show it off. However, there are some simple guidelines. No flexing (c’mon guys, that’s corny). As mentioned above, no mirror or gym selfies either. In fact, it isn’t even totally necessary that you are shirtless (although it helps). You want to look naturally attractive, not like a douche. Ideally you are playing a sport, on a boat, or doing something fun with friends. Subtlety is key. You can’t look like you’re trying too hard.

Tinder AthleteWhat this photo should make the girl think:

He is hot. I’m down.

Photo #3: The Smart, Successful & Sophisticated Gentleman

This should be one of you in a business or social situation, and ideally with a few other well dressed decent looking dudes. Perhaps one of you in glasses, or a suit. Maybe this is one of you at a wedding. Or graduation. It doesn’t matter. Whatever the photo, it should look like Robin Thicke or Justin Timberlake songs are playing in the background.


What this photo should make the girl think:

Grown and sexy. He seems mature, sophisticated, and smart. My kind of guy.

It also conveys trust. If this girl is going to meet you tonight (or sometime within the next 48 hours) she cannot be questioning whether or not you are a creeper, a lowlife or trash. This photo should remove all doubt.

Photo #4: The Fun and/or Adventurous Photo a.k.a. The Personality Shot

It is impossible for a female to admit she is looking for a one-night stand. So even if that is the case, she is still checking you out as a potential mate. So this photo is for you to be genuine. This photo should depict your interests, hobbies, and what you consider fun. This should show the fun side of you. You can be at a bar, fishing, standing on a cliff, in front of the Golden Gate Bridge – it doesn’t really matter what the activity is as long as it reflects you.

PersonalWhat this photo should make the girl think:

I like him. Chances are if she makes it to this photo after the last three – she is interested in more than just a hookup. She needs to know you are a fun guy, like to travel, like to go out, etc. It just needs to show off who you really are. It’s the final validation that you are a real guy and not a creeper. No red flags here.


3. Profile Tagline/Description

Short and sweet. No need to write an autobiography here.  No need to rant about your favorite sports teams, or make a long list of your favorite bands (this isn’t MySpace). Chances are she isn’t going to read the whole thing anyway. You need to say just enough to pique her interest. For reference, it should be longer than a tweet – but shorter than a Facebook rant. The 200ish character range should suffice. If you have an interesting job or passion, this is the place to show it. She has just a few seconds to decide, so make double sure you are selling yourself well.


  • If you are over 6 foot, it’s okay to put your height. Don’t worry about your weight because girls could perceive 6’4″ 230lbs as overweight. If you are under 6 foot, leave the height out of it.
  • Leave your genitalia size out of it as well. If you have a 8 inch piece of equipment – why spoil the look on her face when she sees it by letting her know first.
  • Try to sum up your interests and bio into once sentence. Something like “Baseball guru, Stanford grad, lover of all music electronic.”
  • If you are using Tinder on vacation – add that to your profile. If a girl is looking for a one nighter – this removes all doubt of you being a clinger.
  • Try to provoke her to message you first. This is Tinder GOLD. If she messages you first – you have the green light my friend! Try something like “I find it incredibly sexy when a girl isn’t afraid to message me first.” That line is a killer. And as long as you don’t live within 25 miles of the San Francisco Bay Area – you are free to use it.


4. Strategy and Execution

Start with the settings. Make sure you are attracting the right age demographic and location. This is where the Tinder noobs fall short.

Distance: 20 Miles is a good starting place. Tack on 4 miles for every point you are under 8 on the classic 1-10 scale. 49 miles is too far to travel for a late night booty call, gents. Trust me.

Age: The formula is half your age +7  for the lower boundary, and +7 your age for the upper. This means if you are 28, you should be targeting 21-35 year olds. *Pro tip* If you are going cougar hunting – the sweet spot is ages 37-54. 


Next is about the execution. There are two general schools of thought here: the rapid right swipe vs. the deep dive. I will explain both.

The Rapid Right Swipe Method: In my opinion, this method is the most efficient. Simply swipe right or “yes” EVERY girl. Don’t look at the screen, don’t read the description, just click yes to everyone and then do your diligence once the match is made. This is the proactive measure. Don’t fall into the trap of looking for attractive women and discounting those you don’t find attractive, that’s a waste of time! Just get as many matches as possible. You can filter for the girls you find attractive as the matches come in.

The Deep Dive Method: Only use this method if you are looking to date. If you are, in fact, looking for more than a one night stand, then I would recommend OkCupid, Plenty of Fish, or Match over Tinder. The deep dive method takes a while. This requires you to flip flop through all of her pictures, read her tag line, check for mutual friends, etc. Only use this method if you are bored or on the toilet bowl.


5. Messaging

The goal is to strike often and strike while the iron is hot. This may be tough if you are shy, but you need to send out messages to ALL of your matches. Remember the goal gentlemen – you are looking to meet up with ladies on Tinder NOW. If you can’t meet today/tonight, stay off the app. The beauty of Tinder is that it relieves all fear of rejection. Literally, the worst thing that can happen is that you message her and she does not reply. The odds are fairly high that you will get a reply – after all, she had to like you as well, and it takes two to tango on this app.  It’s okay to be upfront with your intentions. Good ways to mention that you’re not looking for anything serious: “I like meeting new people and having fun without getting too involved” or “I’d love to treat you like a princess… But maybe just for tonight.”

Opening Line Do’s:

  • Hey what’s up? You are cute!
  • Hi __name__. You are really attractive BTW!!
  • It’s A Match!! You have really beautiful (eyes, hair, smile). I’m __name__ by the way.

Strategy is to open with a hello and a tasteful compliment. They are meant to be nonchalant, perhaps a bit different, and provoke an emotional response in her. Try to illicit a response. Toss in an emoji (only one, and be selective).

Opening Line Dont’s:

  • Sup.
  • Hey? DTF??
  • You’re really fucking sexy
  • You have amazing tits! OMG

Tinder Message Don't

Guys, as I mentioned above – the women who are on Tinder most likely have the same objective as you do. But that doesn’t give you the green light to cut right to the chase. Try to have some respect. It’s always better to err on the side of gentlemen over sleaze ball. This advice applies to life beyond Tinder.


In Conclusion

Remember, it’s the female who get to pick  and there are TONS of other guys messaging them. This is the perfect opportunity to step up your game. My cousin’s uncle always says decisions without data are a shot in the dark at best. So have fun, try different opening lines, split test your strategy and see what works best.

Exchanging messages for weeks will make your conversation stale, and eventually she’ll lose interest. In general, ask her out within the 48 hours MAX after starting to message her. Don’t wait any longer.

Be warned. Some girls just enjoy swiping through guys to simply chat and flirt. They have absolutely no intention of meeting you. They can be a huge waste of time. This is why you need to ask her out quickly. Go for the kill quick. Time is valuable.

In short, success on Tinder is about finding the balance between chivalry and efficiency. Happy swiping!

Tinder Girl

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This article was written by P.J. Leimgruber

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