This content originally appeared on Mashable for a US audience and has been adapted for the UK audience.
The online world isn’t always the friendliest of places for women, particularly when it comes to trolling and misogyny on social media. From Twitter reply guys, to other forms of online harassment, to straight up cyberstalking, letting women exist in peace seems to be a hard concept to grasp.
When it comes to dating apps specifically — where others often assume that a dating app profile means that one is willfully subjecting themselves to creepy comments — the chance of women enduring such unsettling experiences feels doubled. The onslaught of men grasping at straws for attention with messages saying “think they saw you somewhere” or requesting nudes in their opening line is an online dating specialty.
Is it easier to shoot your shot by simply using a hot selfie on your Instagram story as bait for your crush? That’s a classic tactic that’ll never die. But unless you and said crush are already in some sort of flirtationship and already follow each other on social media, finding love, a hookup, or someone to grab a drink with could happen a lot faster with the right dating app (as opposed to waiting to meet someone at work or agreeing to a blind date).
This means not deleting and re-downloading Tinder after every breakup or every time you ghost (or get ghosted by) your current entanglement. Tinder can truly be a great place to meet genuine people who are open to getting serious, to find a reliable friend with benefits, or to get a good-old-fashioned confidence boost from a mutual right swipe. But if you’re frustrated with horny users disguising themselves as relationship seekers or relationship seekers who can’t handle it when you say you’re just looking for a hookup, opting for a dating site more finely-tuned to what you’re looking for means you’ll spend less time dealing with people who aren’t looking for the same thing.
Maybe you can’t stand starting every conversation from scratch. Maybe your biggest fear is ending up on a date with someone who doesn’t care about cats. Instead of a lazy bio, dating apps that delve into someone’s hobbies, favourite movies, career goals, or political views before even talking to them opens up a wealth of clever ice breakers, and ensures that you aren’t going into things blindly.
What are dating apps doing to make dating safer?
Meeting someone from the internet in person for the first time is nerve-wracking for anyone. But for women, it can dredge up the same fear that occurs when walking alone past a big group of men.
Match Group is making strides toward a safer dating experience: Tinder was the first to unveil new features coming out of its partnership with Noonlight, a safety app that tracks the location of users and notifies authorities if there are concerns. Before heading out on a date, Tinder users can log info about where they’re going and who they’re meeting, as well as hit a panic button to alert authorities if there’s an emergency.
Match Group plans to roll out the same features for its other apps, like Hinge and OkCupid, later. In March 2021, Tinder announced plans to let users run a background check on their matches.
Should you use free dating apps?
There are plenty of free dating sites and apps out there, and the likes of Tinder and Hinge are popular options with massive networks of users. You can easily enter the online dating game without spending anything, but you get what you pay for with dating sites and apps.
For the best experience with the greatest possibility of finding exactly what you’re looking for, you are probably going to need to cough up some cash. The best dating sites don’t come cheap, and whilst you can still find a hookup with a free app, you should upgrade is you’re looking for compatibility tests, chat rooms, videos, and a greater level of control.
What are the best dating sites for women?
Whether you’re looking for a fun time or your next long-term relationship, we have picked out a wide range of apps and sites for different types of daters. So whatever you’re looking for, we have you covered with this guide.
We have done the tough stuff, looked at all the facts and figures, and worked out which sites are the best options for every single type of woman out there. We have narrowed it down to the best sites, and reviewed the likes of eharmony, Match, Lumen, and AdultFriendFinder for your consideration.
These are the best dating sites for women in 2023.