This Secret Dating Profile Picture Trick Will Get You Way More Matches

If you want more right swipes, you need to be doing this in your profile picture.

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The way you curate your dating profile can be the difference between finding a date and not. With that in mind, the photos you select may be the only thing standing between you and the potential for love. It's hard to predict what people are looking for while swiping through an endless carousel of profiles, but science says there is one foolproof thing that attracts others: your smile. That's why including photos featuring your big, brilliant smile gives you a better chance of getting more matches.

Smiling makes you seem more warm and friendly, and according to a 2012 study, it could even boost your perceived attractiveness. The study, published by Cognition & Emotion, found that attractiveness is strongly influenced by how intense a person's smile appears. Researchers even found that a sunny smile could potentially compensate for relative unattractiveness.

Man using a dating app
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This phenomenon doesn't only pertain to in-person encounters—it's relevant to dating profiles as well. Former sociologist for Tinder and Bumble Jess Carbino, PhD, told Business Insider that her research into online dating found that "smiling makes such a significant difference" in whether people receive a right swipe or not.

Carbino warns against falling into the common trap of posting photos with a pouty face or model glare. While these looks may work in magazines or on billboards, Carbino says they rarely captivate online daters. According to Carbino, those pictures of you smoldering don't "give off the type of sentiment that you want to be projected toward a potential match. You want to come off as kind and approachable, which is what smiling projects."

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Dating app Coffee Meets Bagel analyzed over 300 profiles to see which types of smiles caught the most attention. They told Bustle that not only should you be smiling in your profile pictures, but certain kinds of smiles could make you more enticing. Coffee Meets Bagel's research found that women who tilted their heads received more likes, while men who smiled with their heads straight saw more matches.

And if you have a picture of yourself laughing to show off your sense of humor, you may want to reconsider using it. According to Coffee Meets Bagel, of the single women who get likes more than half the time, just 2 percent had a photo of them laughing, while 0 percent of men made the laughing picture work for them.

Ensuring that your dating profile is stocked with pictures of you smiling and enjoying life seems to be the key to attracting matches. So, if you're looking to lock down a love interest, feature a photo with your biggest, brightest smile. And for turn-offs to avoid, Two-Thirds of People Say This Is a Dating Dealbreaker.

Allie Hogan
Allie Hogan is a Brooklyn based writer currently working on her first novel. Read more
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