Studies show that upwards of 80 percent of everything you see on a dating profile is a stretch of the truth. There are four white lies in particular that get abused by a majority of the dating profiles, and while none of these are particularly a big surprise, the science behind them just might be!
The majority of research suggests that online daters lie about their height. This tendency is just as widespread in women as it is in men. Men, however, seem to be especially driven to reach the coveted six foot mark, and will round up accordingly from almost any height from 5’8” and up. In other words, a 5’9” guy will have no problem throwing an extra three inches onto his height, whereas a guy who is 5’11”, will most likely only feel the necessity to round up one inch.
Women lie about their height, but there really isn’t any magical number they desire to achieve. Not surprisingly, with all the men who are stretching their necks and slipping marshmallow puffs into their loafers, it is actually the shorter women who get the brunt of the dating action. On average, a 5’4” woman will receive a good fifty more perspective suitors than a woman six feet or taller. Interesting, while taller women receive less interest, they are having the majority of the sex, suggesting they just might be slightly desperate.
While men and women are both guilty of lying about their weight (sixty percent of all daters are guilty of this), it becomes particularly strategic for women. While we would like to think men are mostly interested with what’s inside, in the real world men are caught and reeled in by looks first, personality second. There is only one way to get past this compatibility issue, and that is to either display a photo from a couple years ago, or avoid showing anything from the neck down.
Unfortunately for the crowd who scans the full body photo, they are missing out on one of the best ways to get their profile noticed: showing skin. One of the most popular photos for women, according to research, are candid self shots in the mirror, with an engaging (eye contact), flirty expression, and a portion of skin showing. While women will most likely say male showoffs are a put off, showing toned muscles will practically double a guy’s chances of turning a message (or match) into a date. Keep in mind that studies also suggest that the more attractive a photo is, the more likely it is out of date.
Unsurprisingly, men and women both lie about their yearly income, but this lie becomes especially strategic for men. Men lie about their income by an average of twenty percent to their favor, and for good reason. When researchers surveyed the number of messages received by men age twenty-four and up, the guys with yearly incomes over 100K per year were among the 90th percentile, while the guys who earned a modest 20K were left in the chilly sandbox playing amongst themselves at the 10th percentile.
These studies aren’t suggesting that women are necessarily gold diggers, but they are concerned about a man’s financial stability and ability to cover the cost of raising a family. Women are particularly attracted to assets, which includes a house or business. Men below the age of twenty-four don’t seem to be held to these standards as much, and a guy can weasel his way up from the poor pack by exhibiting potential. As potential goes, women pay particular attention to intelligence, ambition, and education. In other words, a thirty-year-old medical student is given grace for not having a high income.
While I hate to be the brunt of bad news, there are quite a large number of attached spouses who run profiles on singles sites looking for folks to cheat on with their existing relationship or spouse. Many of these folks are limited by the information (and photos) they can offer, but surprisingly, despite the importance many daters seem to put on the headshot (and body shot), studies show that you don’t actually need a photo on your profile to receive hits (or I should rather say, get hit on). Oy vey!