Like most things in this world, acing dating apps is both a science and an art.

Being single in your 40s sucks… It’s that in-between time that brings with it more problems than solutions. I’m not the youngest thing on Tinder, but I’m not old enough to have given up on romance or sex. I’m single but I come with a lot of baggage, including a failed marriage and a failed long-term relationship. I’m a mother. I’m wholly independent: I have my own house, my own car, and my own bank accounts. I also come with a reputation thanks to this blog… In many ways, I am a formed person which puts me in an awkward position when dating.


That’s why, my aim now is to find someone who takes me as I am; with all the flaws and the beauty of being a fully-formed person. In order to do that, I have taken to online apps – as well as the more traditional methods of dating – to find someone. But how am I meant to compete with all the 20-something, baggage-less women out there? How am I meant to influence the other person’s momentary decision to swipe left or swipe right with just a few photos and a short description?

Here’s how…

Look Interesting In Photos. On dating apps, a person makes up their mind as soon as they see your photo. Checking out the rest of the profile is just a way of confirming their initial decision. It is for that reason that rather than making sure I look absolutely stunning in each photo, I make sure that each photo has a context and raises questions. I want to make the other person wonder what I’m laughing about, what I’m looking at, and where I was when the photo was taken. This gives my profile and pictures life and makes me appear interesting at a point where I am being judged without me being present.

Keep Profiles Short and Fun: No one wants to read a whole essay and no one cares about all the trials and tribulations of my life. What they want to know is what kind of person I am. And the same can be applied to you. Keep profiles short and fun; throw in a couple of cute facts, such as that you like watching Grey’s Anatomy or Narcos, and a couple of imperfections or random facts, such as eating the fries before the burger.

Meeting Quickly: Online is not real life. The way people talk and react is different, delayed, curated and, to a certain extent, fake. By meeting the other person as quickly as possible, I avoid projecting an image that is untrue, and I also get a better sense of the other person’s mannerisms, tone of voice, and real-life reactions… After all, how am I to know if the guy I’m chatting to is rude to waiters if I don’t meet them?

So, there you have it. Those are my three new rules to acing online dating. And, if you have any suggestions, feel free to post them in the comments section below!