Many men have problems with the right profile picture for dating apps or dating sites.
That’s how it was with Paul, who came to me because he wasn’t getting enough requests from women. To appear spontaneous and sympathetic, he had tried his luck with a selfie. Not a good idea – as recent research has shown. Because when it comes to your own attractiveness, self-perception and external perception are often miles apart! (More on this below)
Paul’s (only) picture showed him casually wearing a hat. Cool just, as he himself believed. Wrong! Now Paul understood why he got so little feedback. After all, if there is only one picture and the man on it is not even smiling, he can hardly expect to trigger positive feelings in women with his photo. Often, especially women perceive “cool” selfies as arrogant or even self-indulgent!
[Name and story have been changed to ensure anonymity].
This is how important questions arise:
What should a good profile picture look like?
A good profile picture is one that shows you with a smile. And this is how – attention! -that your eyes smile with.
Looking directly into the camera is fine, but not a must. It is usually enough if you as a man look friendly and natural – like a little unfathomable. (Women, on the other hand, should look directly into the camera in photos – and be sure to smile! Otherwise we men find them less attractive).
The ideal profile pictures for flirting are therefore different for men and women, according to this study.
Which camera do I need for this?
An SLR camera gives the profile image the right depth of field (with a low aperture). So your face is in focus, the background is blurred. The picture should best be taken in the so-called “Golden Hour”. This flatters the facial features and you don’t look artificial.
Selfie or rather not?
A selfie is not recommended for a single profile picture. Those who are good at photography in general can give it a try. Then best diagonally from above, close to a (natural) light source, with a calm background. Touching up small things with an app is okay, but please do it sparingly!
Can I photograph myself alone?
In any case, someone you know should really know how to take pictures. Otherwise, it’s worth going to a professional. The important thing is that the chemistry between you and the other person is right. A good photographer or even coach provides a relaxed atmosphere. This is reflected in the result, especially in photos: A relaxed posture and relaxed facial features look sympathetic, confident and authentic – literally attractive to the viewer! Plus, being a photographer gives you time to focus on your own strengths.
How many images do I need?
As a rule, two to six. A single picture, in the worst case even a selfie, could be an indication for “them” that you are a loner. The first picture (main picture) shows you: best alone, in a confident but not arrogant pose. The other pictures show you traveling (because you’re cosmopolitan), with friends (because you’re socially connected), with an animal (because you have more than just self-love), with your passion/hobby (because you’re passionate about something – maybe even “them”?) and last but not least: a full body picture.
What no-go’s do I need to watch out for?
Poses with cigarettes or alcohol, pictures with a lot of naked skin or pictures that show you doing various sports activities. The latter quickly comes across as deliberately casual or even narcissistic. A man who feels the need to show off like this might lack recognition. Is he hoping to win her over in this crude way?!
Besides, women are quite capable of deciding for themselves whether you are athletic or not based on a normal full body picture. The best thing you can do is just ask yourself, “What side of me do I want to show and how do I want to show up to be well received?”
How do I know if I look attractive in the picture?
You don’t know that! This rather surprising finding emerges from a study.
Is there such a thing as the perfect profile picture?
Probably not. But what could be more fun than testing it yourself at photofeeler? In the beginning, it certainly takes a lot of effort to be judged by strangers. But if the pictures are well taken, you will get positive feedback! A blog page in photofeeler explains almost perfectionistically what is important in an ideal profile picture.
Key findings from photofeeler:
Men and women should keep the following in mind:
Eyes: Direct eye contact gives slight advantages, sunglasses only bring disadvantages.
Face: A missing smile has a negative effect, smiling has a positive effect, laughing even more. However, when exaggerated, it can also turn into the opposite.
Body: Elegance (wearing a suit) has a positive effect – which is unsurprising. It conveys competence and influence, but has no effect on the sympathy shown.
Image processing: The recommendation here is rather moderate. Black and white images have no clear positive or negative effects. You should refrain from using a zoom that is too strong.
What can a flirt coach do for me?
Quite a lot. As always, it all depends on the overall appearance. The profile picture is just a single important component out of many. To seduce women, you need a complete dating profile, a suitable conversation starter and tips for a successful chat.
In real dating, the application and decoding of body language are added to the mix. Together we can figure out what you need to do to attract women who are right for you. Then it will also work out with the first real date!
© Timo ten Barge [22 .06.2017]