A study of 4,000 singles by the dating website Zoosk has determined the perfect formula for a fetching profile picture. Women attract 60 percent more attention with photos taken indoors, whereas men do 19 percent better with shots that showcase their outdoorsy side. Full-body shots are a must for both sexes, providing a whopping 203 percent boost in messages received.
It also helps if you, like these people, are unusually attractive.
Selfies are a divisive issue. Female online daters who upload them experience a slight bump (4 percent) in popularity, but selfie-happy men see an 8 percent drop. Women may prefer guys in pictures taken by other people – which, by the way, is what I will be calling all conventional photos from this moment on – because that proves they’re social, or at least that they’re capable of building an android companion to stave off the terrible, terrible loneliness in their remote mountain lairs.
Whatever you do, avoid photos that feature a friend or animal at your side. Cute as he, she, or it may be, you can expect his/her/its presence to slice your popularity in half. “Which one are you,” your suitors will wonder, “The blonde, the redhead, or the dog?”
Zoosk’s study also turned up what is arguably the single most baffling online dating statistic of all time. The emoticon :-) will net you a 13 percent increase in replies, but :) results in a mysterious 66 percent decline. Noses are important.