6 Tips For A Perfect Online Dating Photo

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First impressions matter... and when it comes to online dating, your first impression is your profile picture, not your love of hiking and spicy food. Check out our no-fail tips for choosing the best photo of yourself:
1. Look Like Yourself

Your online dating profile photo should look like you on a really good day... but it should still look like you! And make sure to get an honest friend to look over your selection: A study in the Journal of Communication found that while online daters rated their own photos as relatively accurate, independent judges rated a third of the photographs as inaccurate. Your best bet? Step away from the webcam and use candid shots your friends have taken.

2. Like the Current Version of Yourself

It's not enough to look like yourself from last year or from the time you had mono during college and fit in your skinny jeans. We're looking at you, ladies: The Journal of Communication also found that female photos were less accurate than male photos, and were more likely to be older, retouched and to contain inconsistencies, including changes in hairstyle and skin quality. Think about it this way: picture the guy you dated last. Now picture him with a mullet. Or a handlebar mustache. Or both, if you can handle it. Would you still have gone out with him if he was rocking those? If you have long brown hair in your photos, don't surprise someone with a blond pixie when you meet in person.

3. Keep Makeup Natural

When it comes to war paint, men prefer you all natural. In fact, 67 percent of men polled by UK fashion site My Celebrity Style say they prefer minimal makeup... and a third say they prefer none at all. Don't leave him guessing what your pout looks like underneath all that liner—keep it light with tinted gloss that brings out your natural pucker. And resist the urge to channel Amy Winehouse with overbearing eye accoutrements and stick to mascara and an eyelash curler to highlight your eyes. Do Men Prefer Women In Sweats Or Heels?

4. Flirt with the Camera

Ready to flash those pearly whites? Don't, says OKCupid. The dating site found that flirting directly into the camera is your best bet—women who took pictures making their best flirty face got messaged more than women who smiled. But make sure you're making eye contact with the camera: smiling or flirting away from the camera rubbed guys the wrong way.

5. Show Off Your Sense of Style

Quick, take a look at your profile as it is now: are all of your photos of you glammed up for various evening occasions? Yes, you probably feel like you look your best in these shots, but unless you're planning to show up to your coffee date in your sorority Fall Ball gown, mix it up a little. Whether you're a jeans-and-tee kind of girl, or love the sexy pinup look—or both—show it off in your photos.

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6. But Show Off Your Curves, Too

By all means, wear that harem romper... just don't wear it in your online profile photos. Guys can have a hard time wrapping their heads around some of our fashion choices, and we don't blame them—drop-crotch skinny jeans? Really? No need to bust out the bikini or skin-baring shots, but give the dude a general idea of your shape—whatever it is—by skipping the oversize tees and baggy boyfriend jeans in favor of something simple and form-fitting. 5 Fashion Trends Men Hate