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Online Dating Tips for Men: 7 Deadly Tinder Sins NOT to Commit

Dating coach Connell Barrett talks online dating tips for men, smashing out of the friend zone, and whether Tinder Gold is worth it.

Online Dating Tips For Men


I swipe and swipe and get no good matches on Tinder, except for women I’m just not attracted to. I’ve read a lot of online dating tips for men, and I’d like to know what I might be doing wrong. 

—Nish, 39, Miami 

Online dating is competitive. In some cities, there are five times as many men on Tinder as women—and the majority of guys are swiping on the most desirable women. 

My client Ted, 29, needed online dating tips for men. He used this checklist to overhaul his Bumble profile. One week later, he’d gone out on two dates with two women, after being dateless for the previous six months. 

The 7 Deadly Tinder Sins NOT to Commit: 

1: Weak photos.

Too dark, grainy, and filled with unflattering selfies. This is the biggest cause of lack of matches. You must have good photos, starting with at least two well-lit portraits, showing you well-dressed, smiling, and date-able.

2: Boring and predictable.

Most dating-app bios suffer from a fatal case of I-Like-Long-Walks-on-the-Beach-itis. They’re dull and they read like a resume. Avoid clichés like “Just giving this a try” (duh!) and quoting your favorite TV show. 

3: Negativity.

Never list what you DON’T want in a partner. Be positive. Good vibes only. This includes writing any variation of “no drama.” Women hate this because it’s like saying, “Have no emotions and be perfect.”  

4: Confusing content or jokes that don’t land.

Clarity is key. If she’s snoozing, you’re losing.

5: A dense block of hard-to-read text.

You want visual appeal, with line breaks and an emoji or two. (No eggplants! Think winky or laughing smiley-faces.) 

6: Photos that show you looking trashed/drunk.   

7: Nothing.

No blank bios. Write something. 

Read my column on Tinder Tips to help you understand what to write in your bio instead. Then read on to find out if Tinder Gold is worth it.

online dating tips for men - Tinder


I’ve been going on a quite a few dates, but women tend to only see me as a friend. Sometimes they blow me off before I even get the first date. Little help?

—Christian, 44, Seattle

“Let’s just be friends.”

They’re four of the most dreadful words a man will ever hear, along with “We need to talk” and “Smash Mouth is reuniting.” (The horror!)

It can hurt to want a second date with a woman who doesn’t want one with you. It’s also frustrating when a girl you’re messaging goes quiet before you’re able to meet up. 

Welcome to (cue: thunder, scary music) the friend zone. It can make you wonder, “Am I doing something wrong? Am I not attractive?”

Well, there’s one simple move you can use on all your dates from now on. Follow this simple rule: 

If you think she’s sexy, tell her so. And tell her why. 

Many women get a “just friends” vibe because the guy failed to make his interest clear, either due to fear or because he thinks he needs to “play it cool.” If you find a woman sexy, tell her. (Hey, we all want to feel sexy.) And tell her why. 

Advanced move: Don’t make it only about her looks. Go deeper. Tell her the inner quality that you find sexy: her wit, her ambition, her silliness. No faking this. You must mean it. (A woman’s b.s. detector is more sensitive than a Richter scale.)

This is all part of being Radically Authentic—showing women your most honest, vulnerable, TRUE self. 

For more tips on How To Get Out Of The Friend Zone, click here.


With dating apps, should I use the premiere, paid memberships, like Tinder Gold? Or are they a waste of money?

—Damon, 40, Austin, Texas

Yes, you should go for the Gold. Top-tier memberships assure that the maximum number of women see your profile—all for the monthly price of a mojito. That’s a bargain.

But ONLY if you’ve put time and effort into excellent photos and a compelling bio. 

Now, you may be saying, “But Tinder Gold has never worked for me.” That’s because your profile has, well, sucked. Any dating app can work for you with the right profile. 

Tinder Gold won’t magically make a poor profile attractive. But with the right photos and bio, it definitely delivers results, as do the premium versions of Bumble, Hinge, Coffee Meets Bagel, and The League. 

While you may be tempted to watch your wallet, don’t scrimp here. You get what you pay for with dating apps, and if you follow my advice, it probably won’t be a long-term expense.  

Connell Barrett is an online dating coach for men. He's appeared on shows such as The Today Show, Access Hollywood and more. His advice has also been published in magazines such as Maxim, Cosmopolitan, and O Magazine to name a few. His new dating book for men releases in 2021. Ask Connell a dating question below.

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Connell Barrett Dating coach for men

I'm dating coach Connell Barrett. I help men build confidence and connect with women by being authentic!

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NYC Dating Coach Connell Barrett

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