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Published: Feb 10, 2023 27 min read
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The number of U.S. smartphone dating app users will reach 26 million this year, according to projections from Statista. Not only is that a whole lot of fish, but the virtual sea they’re swimming in is vast. Software comparison site CompareCamp estimates that there are more than 1,500 different dating apps on the market today.

With so many options available, choosing the right app can be tricky. How do you know which is best for you? We found that the best dating sites and top dating apps tend to have three things in common: customizable profiles (prompts or icebreakers), voice and video calling and built-in safety features.

To help you narrow down your choices, we gathered information on free and premium versions of an extensive selection of dating apps. We’ve spotlighted our top picks and also included additional notable apps. Read on to begin your virtual dating journey.

Our Top Picks for Best Dating Apps

  • Bumble: Best for Women
  • Tinder: Best for Casual Relationships
  • HER: Best for Queer, Lesbian, and Bi Daters
  • Hinge: Best for Long-Term Relationships
  • OkCupid: Best for Compatibility Matching
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Best Dating Apps Reviews

Pros
  • Women make the first move
  • Browse, match and message for free
  • Communicate through audio notes and video chat
  • Advanced filters help narrow the user pool
  • Use Snooze Mode to pause your profile without losing matches
  • Private Detector AI system blurs unsolicited nude pics
Cons
  • One month of Bumble Premium is pricey at $39.99
  • Only 24 hours to connect with someone; extra time costs extra
  • Profiles are limited to maximum of six pictures and a 300-character description
  • Desktop version doesn't offer Bumble Bizz, Bumble BFF, Beeline or advanced filters
HIGHLIGHTS
Features
Women message first, heightened safety features
Price
$16.99/month for Boost, $39.99 for Premium
Gender Identity Options
75+ options

Woman-founded Bumble is the only app operating with a women-message-first approach. Other genders, such as cisgender men or non-binary people, must wait to be messaged if they match with a woman. In same-gender connections, any user can message first. All matches expire after 24 hours — you can, however, use your daily free extension or pay extra for more time.

Another one of Bumble’s distinctive features are its “modes.” Users can switch between “date” for romantic connections or “BFF” for new friends and “Bumble Bizz” for business networking. The rule of women messaging first applies here, too.

Bumble uses the swipe right-or-left method for browsing. Profile basics are complemented by options like connecting Spotify to display your favorite artists, profile prompts, and your star sign. You can also choose to hide your gender from your profile.

When it comes to safety and security, we like that Bumble matches can video chat or voice call without having to exchange phone numbers. Plus, an AI-powered Private Detector blurs lewd images; no more unsolicited nudes! (Note: You can choose to see the picture if you want.) Bumble also offers identity verification through an in-app selfie; this can help assure others they aren’t being catfished.

Another supportive plus: Bumble’s terms of service speaks directly to fatphobia and body-shaming language, noting that any users who engage in this behavior could face permanent suspension. Additionally, in the Safety and Wellbeing section, there’s help for dating burnout or anxiety, a guide to coping with rejection or getting ghosted, and connections to organizations that support survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence and human trafficking.

There’s plenty to love about the free version of Bumble, but if you’re looking for extras — the ability to go back to profiles you accidentally swiped away from or unlimited match window extensions, for example — you’ll have to sign up for Boost at $8.99 per week or $16.99 monthly. The next subscription tier is Premium, which includes travel and incognito mode, additional search filters, and a 30-minute Spotlight, which gives your profile more visibility.

Best for Casual Dating: Tinder

Pros
  • Free match and chat, plus video calls
  • Connect your Spotify or Instagram
  • Search for matches based on specific interests
  • Pay for your date's ride with Lyft
  • One free Super Like per day
  • Partners with Noonlight app, Garbo and Crisis Text Line to increase user safety
Cons
  • Profiles are less customizable compared to other dating apps
  • No prompts or icebreakers for profiles
  • Garbo is not available in-app: it's a separate platform
HIGHLIGHTS
App Spotlight
Photo-centric, ideal for casual dating, flings, or hookups
Price
Tinder Plus - $19.99/month, Tinder Gold $29.99/month, Tinder Platinum - $39.99/month
Features
Showcase up to nine photos, find users with similar "vibes" via Explore
Gender Identity Options
More than 50 genders and about 10 pronoun choices

Some 75 million active users each month — with more than 50% of that user base aged 18-25 — are on Tinder, one of the most popular dating apps in the world. Profile pictures are its centerpiece; in fact, one of its founders is credited with creating the swiping method that forever changed online dating.

You can showcase up to nine pictures on your Tinder profile. Likely for this reason, it’s a go-to for daters who are interested in hookups or casual encounters. Add more about yourself by including pronouns, a short bio (500 characters), your zodiac sign, lifestyle preferences, family plans, your Spotify faves, personality type, communication style and love language. You can also show up to three selections from nine sexual orientation options — or you can keep this information hidden.

We like Tinder’s Explore section for its vibes-centric matching. For example, Free Tonight will serve users interested in meeting up soon, and Music Mode filters profiles by similar music interests. Passions offers several categories to filter potential matches: sports, thrill seekers, wanderlust, self Care, nature lovers and more. You can also send Lyft credits to matches through Explore.

As the 2022 scandal around Netflix’s “Tinder Swindler” made headlines, Match Group, Inc. — Tinder’s parent company — partnered with Garbo, a non-profit platform, to provide two free background checks for every Tinder member.

Additional safety features include email and photo verification, with profiles of verified users displaying a blue checkmark next to their name, and the ability to store blocked contacts from your phone to ensure you don’t see their profiles. Tinder users can also use Noonlight, an app that allows you to trigger emergency services, or text TINDER to 741741 from anywhere in the U.S. to access a Crisis Text Line.

Tinder’s free version is pretty stacked with features. But if you’re looking for more, such as unlimited likes and rewinds, a “passport” to any location, the ability to show your profile only to those you’ve swiped right on, or to see everyone who’s liked your profile, you can subscribe to one of three tiers. Tinder Plus costs $19.99 per month, Tinder Gold is $29.99 per month or, for $39.99 per month, you can subscribe to Tinder Platinum.

Best for Lesbian, Queer, and Bi Daters: HER

Pros
  • Pronouns prominently displayed
  • Add fun pride stickers to your profile
  • Social media-style community section
  • Attend online events with HER users
  • Connect your Spotify account
Cons
  • Unlimited swipes are only available with a Platinum subscription
  • Ads can only be removed with a paid subscription
  • 7-day Premium free trial automatically charges at expiration if you don't cancel
HIGHLIGHTS
App Spotlight
Tailored specifically to LGBTQIA+ people
Price
Premium - $24.99 per month
Features
Social-media style community area, Pride Pins for profiles
Gender Identity Options
19 choices or self-describe

When it launched in 2019, HER was the first app made specifically for queer women to meet other queer women. It’s since evolved to cater to people of all genders and sexualities, such as trans lesbians or pansexual, non-binary femmes.

Pronouns are prominently displayed on your profile, a feature that’s not offered on every dating service. (HER offers tons of pronoun choices, plus the option to self-describe.) You can also add stickers to your profile to show pride in your sexuality, gender, or interests, like gaming or plants.

To help you start the dating journey with confidence, find suggestions on building a solid profile and look over the Community section’s events — a great place to meet a first date, whether in person or virtual. HER also features a “like” notifications page where you can see a profile preview of any user who “liked” you. (To see all of your likes and profile views, though, you’ll need a premium subscription.)

The Community section also connects people based on specific interests. You can send friend requests and include hashtags in posts there, too. In this sense, HER works as a dating and social media app, leaving it to the user to decide how to engage.

Users with free memberships can swipe, chat and participate in communities without limit, but you’ll have to put up with unwanted ads unless you purchase a premium subscription for $24.99 per month. Besides zero ads, premium members have access to additional search filters, incognito mode, rewind profiles and one free boost per month.

Best for Long-Term Relationships: Hinge

Pros
  • Multiple ways to like profiles
  • Profiles can include 30-second video and voice prompts
  • Multiple writing prompts for profiles
  • Upload and pair your images with captions
Cons
  • Only available for mobile (iPhones/iPads and Android devices)
  • Free version only allows eight likes per day
HIGHLIGHTS
App Spotlight
Swaps swiping for interactive profiles that encourage conversation
Price
Preferred - $34.99/month
Features
Super customizable profiles, audio/video prompts
Gender Identity Options
Write-in option available, select up to four pronouns from many

Hinge stands out, even among its peers — Tinder, OkCupid, Match, Plenty of Fish — in its online dating services parent company Match Group. We heart Hinge for its alternative approach that relies not on swiping, but on in-depth, interactive profiles that encourage people to engage in real conversations.

Rather than simply swiping left or right, on Hinge you can “heart” photos or prompts on a person’s profile to send likes or, if you’re feeling romantic, send a rose instead. From there, you can start a conversation. To pass on a profile, just hit the “X” and a new person will appear.

Uploading photos is fun as users can pair their pictures with a small snippet of text to showcase their personality. That said, our favorite features are the 30-second video and voice prompts for profiles or to exchange in chat. Suggested prompts include “my best celebrity impression,” “a quick rant about,” and “guess the song.”

If you’re looking for a committed relationship, whether monogamous or polyamorous, Hinge may be right for you. After all, its tagline declares the app is “designed to be deleted.” Another Hinge plus: An anti-ghosting measure called “Your Turn” that reminds you to message a new match back.

Like most dating apps, during the sign-up process on Hinge, you’re asked questions about yourself and what you’re looking for in a match. However, here you’re required to answer three prompts to complete registration. Hinge uses this information — and your Facebook profile if you choose to connect it — in conjunction with the Nobel-prize-winning algorithm called the Gale-Shapley algorithm to find someone who you are likely to like, and who is likely to like you back.

Over time, the algorithm continues to learn your interests through who you engage with most. You’ll see these people most often in daily match recommendations.

On the downside, free users get a limited number of likes per day (10), and the app doesn’t have as many users as Tinder or Bumble.

The free version of Hinge is by no means a stripped-down version of the service. Still, for unlimited likes and to see everyone who likes you, you’ll want a Preferred subscription. The monthly cost is $34.99; it includes advanced preferences and offers twice as many standouts, which are spotlights on relevant-to-you profiles that are getting lots of attention.

Best for Compatibility Matching: OkCupid

Pros
  • Match % shows compatibility likelihood with potential dates
  • Choose from a range of gender and sexual identities
  • Profile info includes eating, smoking, drinking and cannabis habits
  • 1 free SuperLike per week
  • LGBTQ+ resources
  • Available for iOS, Android and desktop
Cons
  • Basic subscription cost is $24.99 monthly; Premium at $44.99 per month
  • No video chat
  • Free interface includes ads
HIGHLIGHTS
App Spotlight
Matches users based on compatibility
Price
$24.99 per month for Basic, $44.99 per month for Premium
Features
Groups matches by shared interests and compatibility
Gender Identity Options
22 choices

OkCupid is a dating website and app acquired in 2011 by Match Group Inc. — also the parent company of Tinder, Hinge and Match.com. Over the years, the app shifted from its heteronormative perspective to make it a better fit for the LQBTQ+ community (and everyone else, really).

Every profile shown to you on OkCupid includes a compatibility percentage based on profile details as well as responses to Match Questions, which ask for input on a variety of topics about personal values and relationship style. The prioritizing of compatibility percentages takes some guesswork out of matching; a high compatibility score indicates you’re likely to have lots in common with someone.

If you’re interested in someone, swipe right to “heart” them or like or comment on a specific part of their profile. You can then message them when you’re ready.

Browsing profiles on OkCupid goes beyond the basics: Swipe left or right on profiles shown in the main Discover feed, or check out the top row of “Stacks” that groups profiles by categories. Cupid’s Picks is one; here, you’ll find daily recommendations of people you have a high chance of matching with. One downside, though: With Cupid’s Picks, you can only match with a SuperLike, and the free version of OkCupid includes only one of these per week. For more, you’ll have to upgrade to a paid subscription. There are some other Stacks — Popular and New People — that require a Stack Pass.

Other groupings — and profiles shown in these don’t require SuperLikes — include match percentage, online daters, nearby daters, recommended and passport, which shows users from around the world. You’ll also likely see groupings based on your specific interests; for example, if your profile indicates you’re pro-choice, you may get a grouping of other pro-choice users.

OkCupid is highly inclusive: There are 22 sexual or romantic orientations and 22 gender identities to choose from, plus a range of dating options that include hookups, non-monogamous relationships, and long-term relationships.

Boosts, which increase profile visibility, start at $5.99 each (or five for $29.99). To eliminate ads, get unlimited likes and access to Dealbreakers, a search option that helps filter out people you know you won’t like, you’ll need to purchase OkCupid Basic at $24.99.

With OkCupid Premium, you get the aforementioned features plus three free SuperLikes per week. You can also see people’s answers to Match Questions that you yourself haven’t answered, and you’ll see everyone who likes you without having to like them back. Premium costs $44.99 per month, though sometimes the app offers special offers like 50% off your first month.

Other dating apps we considered

The dating scene is vast and deep, and the truth is that dating apps are a great way to meet people and find a meaningful connection. When it came to our top picks, we featured the apps that charmed us with their profile features, inclusivity and user safety. The following dating apps may be worth looking into as well.

Match

Pros
  • Free unlimited likes
  • Message your top picks for free
  • LGBTQ+ inclusive
Cons
  • Premium subscription starts at 35.90 per month
  • Free version includes ads

With more than 25 years in the online dating game, Match is considered a pioneer in the industry. The site has one of the largest dating pools and a tried-and-true algorithm to help users find their “mutual matches.” Messaging matches is free, but limited — unless you upgrade. A subscription gets you the full-feature experience, such as unlimited messaging, video chat, the ability to see who’s online now, monthly profile visibility boosts, a one-on-one with a dating expert, discounts to Match events and read receipts.

eHarmony

Pros
  • Video date
  • Matches made through a compatibility quiz
  • Conversation starters
  • Geared toward long-term commitments
  • Thorough personality test
Cons
  • Subscriptions start at $25.90 per month
  • Pictures only visible to premium members
  • Considers your income
  • Lacks queer gender and sexuality options

An industry staple for more than 20 years, eHarmony is known for its high-tech personality matching system. To find the (hopefully) perfect match, eHarmony uses a compatibility quiz with more than 100 questions. It’s lengthy, but the “32 Dimensions” compatibility quiz feeds the algorithm the info it needs to work its magic. There’s two dealbreakers for us, though. First, free members don’t have access to pictures and profiles unless they upgrade to a paid account. Second, there are no gender choices besides woman or man, and sexual orientation options are limited to heterosexual or woman seeking woman/man seeking man.

Zoosk

Pros
  • Zoosk SmartPick learns from every "❤" and "X" for better match recommendations
  • Send virtual gifts (emojis, animated emoticons) to live streamers within the app
  • Sign up using Facebook or Google account
  • Photo and Facebook verification
  • Available in 80-plus countries and 25 languages
Cons
  • Limited gender and sexuality options
  • Subscriptions start at $29.99 per month
  • You can only message with a paid subscription
  • Free trial includes ads

More than 40 million people worldwide use Zoosk. The dating app’s features include SmartPick introductions via Behavior Matchmaking technology: SmartPick learns from your "❤" and "X" votes to make more relevant subsequent recommendations. Answering the SmartPick Survey will also improve your match results. We like Zoosk’s adaptive match-making, but we dislike its lack of gender and sexuality options.

Coffee Meets Bagel

Pros
  • New matches every day at noon
  • Personalized prompts to start conversations
  • Earn rewards to unlock special features
Cons
  • Premium features are limited based on the user's operating system (iOS or Android)
  • No gender option for nonbinary people
  • Read receipts are only available with a premium subscription
  • No video chat
  • Plain interface and limited features

Coffee Meets Bagel is not only a great name for a dating app, it’s even greater when daily matches are called “bagels.” The gist of the app is to step away from swiping to offer curated, high-quality matches. There’s no lengthy questionnaire, but you can fill out prompts, and user profiles showcase your job and school. But overall, Coffee Meets Bagel’s lack of features and limited daily picks left us wanting more.

SilverSingles

Pros
  • Filters for mature dating, gay senior dating and older women dating
  • Customizable profile
  • Uses encryption-based security protocols and fraud detection systems
  • LQBTQ+ friendly
  • Age range starts at 50 years old
  • Security checks on new profiles
Cons
  • Only three to seven new matches a day
  • Lack of features
  • Limited communication with basic membership
  • Subscriptions at $24.95 for a year, $44.95 for three months

As the name suggests, SilverSingles is a dating app that caters to people 50+ looking for love, new friends or casual dating. The app has been around for over 17 years and is available in the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, Australia and the UK. SilverSingles is LGBTQ+ friendly and offers personalized customer service and security checks on new profiles.

Christian Mingle

Pros
  • Available as a dating website and app
  • More than 15 million Christian faith-focused singles
  • Options for romantic relationships or friend/activity partners
  • Match compatibility percentage
  • Browse users by distance or online status
Cons
  • Messaging and read receipts are only available with a subscription
  • One-month subscription is $49.99
  • No trial period with full access

Christian Mingle provides a space for people looking to date within the Chrisitan faith community. The interface is simply designed and easy to use. Users with free memberships can search, browse, and read others’ profiles, with a single main photo as the main eye-catcher. However, they can’t send messages.

JDate

Pros
  • Customizable profiles
  • Purchase the Spotlight feature without a subscription
  • Respond to direct messages from premium subscribers
  • Articles and advice for dating within the Jewish community
  • Available globally in five languages
Cons
  • Free members only have access to other users' primary photos
  • Free members can only exchange messages with paid subscribers
  • Subscription prices start at $59.99 per month

JDate is a dating platform for individuals looking to connect with other Jewish singles. Users can post up to six pictures and search the database (there are approximately 200,000 JDate users in the U.S.). The site and app are minimalistic in appearance and don’t have any stand-out features. Messaging, read and reply functionality and enhanced privacy controls are only available with the paid membership.

Happn

Pros
  • Easy to sign up
  • Use the app for free or purchase the paid option
  • Video call and voice notes feature
  • Location-based profile recommendations
Cons
  • No compatibility match feature
  • Not great for users in rural areas
  • Subscriptions start at $24.99 per month

It takes less than three minutes to sign up and you’re ready to swipe. You can like or dislike other users, but the chat feature is only available for matches. Happn uses your approximate location to show you who you’ve crossed paths with — a good choice for those living in more populated urban areas, but not great for users in rural areas or those concerned with privacy issues.

Facebook Dating

Pros
  • Works with Facebook app
  • Doesn't notify your Facebook friends that you joined Dating
  • Informs the user of community guidelines
  • Meet people through Facebook events and groups you both like
Cons
  • Glitchy interface
  • Only works on the mobile app
  • Uses your Facebook profile information and other personal data
  • Does not include options for non-binary/non-conforming gender identity
  • Open to scammers and other security and privacy issues

Facebook Dating is a feature within the Facebook mobile app. Besides being completely free, the only thing that stood out was the “Secret Crush” feature, where you can tag one of your friends as your secret crush. If the other person marks you as well, the app will notify you both. That said, the cons outweigh the pros here. Facebook Dating is prone to the same security issues, data leaks and overwhelming number of ads as its parent company.

Best Dating Apps Guide

What are dating apps?

A dating app is a software application that helps people connect and create romantic relationships, friendships, or hookups.

To use a dating app:

  • First, you must download the app to your phone.
  • Create a profile using your phone number and email address, or link to one of your social media or social networking accounts.
  • Complete your profile by filling in personal information, including likes/dislikes and hobbies. Most apps usually ask users to upload at least two photos as well.
  • After completing your profile, you can start liking or swiping right on anyone who catches your eye.
  • Communicate, message and engage in conversation to increase your chances of finding the right person and having a good dating experience.

How do dating apps work?

Online dating websites and dating apps use algorithms to suggest profiles you might like. Algorithms vary by company, but generally, an algorithm relies on the information you’ve provided in your profile (age, location), preferences you’ve set (such as what kind of person you’re seeking), and answers to any questions provided by the app about relationship style, values, interests or other topics. That information is paired with the information of other profiles, and potential partners are delivered based on profile similarities.

Dating app algorithm

Engagement with an online dating site or dating app increases the effectiveness of the algorithm it’s using. The more thoroughly you fill out your profile, the more likely you are to be given relevant matches. The more profiles you “like” or pass on the better, because that activity is also often logged as data for the algorithm, which in turn will learn from your choices and send even more relevant matches.

How to choose a dating app

With many dating apps available, finding the right app for you can feel as challenging as meeting someone in real life who you truly connect with. When selecting a dating app, look at what features the app offers. Consider your needs:

  • What you’re seeking in a relationship (long-term, casual, hookup, etc.)
  • Whether you’re open to long-distance dating
  • Your romantic orientations (sexual orientation, gender)
  • Your deal-breakers
  • How much you value shared interests or hobbies
  • Whether you want to invest in a paid subscription

Look at the online dating site or dating app’s offerings and compare them to your needs to find out if it’s a good fit for you. Remember you can try multiple apps at once to help narrow down which you’d like to focus on.

List of dating apps

LGBTQ+ dating apps Gay dating apps for men Lesbian dating apps Dating apps for women
Taimi Grindr Zoe Bumble
Lex Scruff Taimi Hinge
HER Hornet Lex BiCupid
Zoe Jack’d HER HER
Grindr Feeld Feeld Lex
Scruff The League Clover
Hornet
Jack’d
Feeld
XOXO
OkCupid
Transdr
BiCupid
Jewish dating apps Catholic dating apps Dating apps for single parents Dating apps for professionals
Jdate CatholicMatch Stir The League
Jswipe Catholic Chemistry SingleParentMeet Elite Singles
Seeking

What to watch out for with dating apps

Fake dating profiles

Unfortunately, some people use virtual dating as an opportunity to catfish, or pretend to be someone they’re not. To avoid getting tricked by a fake profile, look for online dating services and dating apps that have verification processes for users, such as photo or phone verification. Another way to find out if someone’s who they say they are is to check their social media pages. You can also do a reverse image search on Google if you suspect someone is using stolen photos.

Online dating scams

When using a dating app or website, be aware of scams. Avoid sharing personal and financial information with other users, including your exact location. Keep in mind that if you link your social media profile to your dating app, users will be able to have access and contact you through other online platforms.

Privacy

If you want privacy and hope to avoid running into someone from your socials in your dating app search, we recommend you use your phone number or email address rather than a social media profile to open an account. If you want to avoid having your social media found by other dating app users, we recommend setting your profile to private.

Many dating apps include access to anonymous browsing in their premium subscriptions. This means that you can browse profiles without other users noticing it. Be wary of the images you share on your apps, since other users might be able to perform a reverse image search to verify profile authenticity and find other related images that could compromise your safety.

Tips for dating apps

With more than 44 million online dating app users in the United States, standing out can feel challenging. Here are some tips to up the allure of your dating app profile:

Be honest about what you’re looking for

We don’t always know what we want, but honesty is one of the best qualities that you can find in a person. Include in your profile if you’re looking for a long-term serious relationship or something more short-term. And if you’re still figuring it out, there’s nothing wrong with saying that either.

Write a short and attractive bio

You don’t have to write your whole life story in your personal bio. Include details that can spark a conversation, such as your favorite TV shows or films, traveling interests or any other fact that can shed light on who you are.

Show your profile to a friend

One of the best ways to know if your profile reveals who you are is to show it to a friend or a family member. Another set of eyes can help you finish building an attractive and genuine profile.

How to start a conversation with online dating

Just like in the in-person dating world, conversations with new people aren’t always easy. Here are some tips for breaking the ice when messaging with a match:

  • Ask about details of their profile
  • Ask what brings them to the app
  • Compare hobbies, music taste and other interests
  • Find a shared interest to discuss
  • Compliment aspects of their profile
  • Ask about their favorite places to go in their city
  • Try a prompt, whether app-suggested or one you Google
  • Ask if they usually meet up with people from the app (and coordinate a meet-up if you feel inclined!)

Dating Apps FAQ

Do dating apps work?

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As far as success rates go, using a dating app has led to a committed relationship or marriage for about 12% of U.S. adults, according to Pew Research. The same study found that nearly 60% of users had an overall positive experience using dating apps. Still, whether a dating app works for you or not depends greatly on what you're looking for and how committed you are to finding it.

What are the best dating apps?

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We downloaded, used, and researched various dating apps and websites. Check our top picks and reviews for the best dating websites and apps.

What dating app should I use?

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The best dating app will depend on what you're looking for. Popular dating apps usually include features like video call dating, customizable profiles and free messaging between matches. Check our complete list for more suggestions.

What are the best free dating apps?

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There are plenty of free dating sites and free dating apps. Bumble, OkCupid and Tinder all offer free basic versions. Keep in mind that free memberships are usually limited, and you only have access to what the full app offers by paying for a subscription.

Why is online dating so hard?

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We're sometimes afraid to put ourselves out there because it makes us vulnerable to rejection. It's also often difficult to start a conversation with someone you've matched with. Rest assured, though: You aren't alone in this. Anyone who's on an online dating site or dating app is in the same situation you're in, from the fear of rejection to the feelings of awkwardness when first messaging someone — especially if it's your first time. Eventually, you'll likely get more accustomed to the process.

How We Chose The Best Dating Apps

To choose the top dating sites and apps, we:

  • Downloaded multiple apps - We created profiles and experienced apps firsthand.
  • Researched multiple apps - Company websites and the apps themselves were scoured for information.
  • Checked feedback - We looked at feedback from users via app reviews and forums.

When exploring the apps, we considered:

  • Profile features - We looked at offerings like prompts, video chat and voice recordings.
  • User safety - Privacy policies, verification features and safety resources were considered.
  • Gender and sexuality inclusivity - We compared options available across apps to see how inclusive they are for LGBTQ+ users.
  • Interface - User-friendly interfaces ranked best. We looked at the app and desktop versions for each app.
  • Free version - We checked to see how functional the app is without a subscription.
  • Subscriptions - We compared prices and features for paid versions of apps.

Note: Subscription prices listed are subject to change.

Summary of The Best Dating Apps of 2023

  • Bumble: Best for Women
  • Tinder: Best for Casual Relationships
  • HER: Best for Queer, Lesbian, and Bi Daters
  • Hinge: Best for Long-Term Relationships
  • OkCupid: Best for Compatibility Matching