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Study: 7 Secrets for “Dating Profile Headlines” (With Examples)

Study: 7 Secrets for “Dating Profile Headlines” (With Examples)

Writing an online dating profile comes with easy and hard steps. Easy might include filling out your height, while hard might include coming up with a good dating profile headline. Does “Do you like pina coladas?” cut it anymore?


Don’t have a dating profile yet? Match.com has a quick sign-up process that makes creating a profile really easy.


Here we go into some successful online dating profile techniques, backed by science, to help carve out a headline that will lead to more clicks and more dates!

7. Be Funny

This may seem obvious, but a recent study posted on eHarmony, which analyzed 12,000 online dating profiles, confirmed that both men and women chose “funny” as a characteristic they are looking for in a partner, ranking it sixth out of a list of 10 enticing words.

Example dating headline that's funny

If you can be funny, it’s universally acknowledged as a good idea. Stumped on how to be funny? Steal a line from your favorite comedy movie. If they know where it’s from, great! You’ve established a common interest. If they don’t and it’s still funny, you look like you’re funny and original. Boom-pow!

6. Talk About Love

Apparently people who talk about relationships and love find relationships and love. A study of 1.2 million profiles by Plenty of Fish showed women who got into a relationship online used the word “relationship” 16 percent more than women who were still single.

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Example of dating headline that talks about love

Think about it: everyone is online to find love. Why not be honest and speak from that place in your heart? Got some Pablo Neruda quotes you’ve been keeping on your intentions board? Maybe you should use them for a headline.

5. Describe Your Attributes… But Only Use Certain Terms

That same eHarmony study also revealed that you should describe the kind of person you are, but only using certain “attractive” words.

Example of dating headline the describes someone's attributes

Looks like women should use words like sweet, optimistic, and thoughtful, while men should use words like passionate, spontaneous, and perceptive.

You’ll find that all of these terms are positively associated with a quality partner’s characteristics. The lesson here is to put the good things about you at the forefront. It works.

4. Mention Your Interests 

Here is where specifics help you. People want to find commonalities with their match. Disclosing your interests makes for effortless conversations and paints a clearer picture of the type of person you are.

Not just any old interest will do, chess dork. According to a study from OkCupid and Match.com, it’s best if some of the interests below are included because it’s what the popular online dating kids do.

Example of dating headline that mentions interests

For men, some activities they should include are surfing, hiking, and live music. For women, they should include things like yoga, acting, and fashion.

If you look at these terms carefully, you’ll see the theme is they evoke an attractive picture in the mind’s eye of the reader.

Some stereotypes hold true in the online dating sciences, namely men falling in love with what they see and women with what they hear. Play to it. Paint the portrait of yourself with words that attract the opposite sex.

Example of dating headline playing to gender biases

A study by researchers at Queen Mary University of London shows men like women whose names draw to their physical attractiveness, while women like men whose attributes are showcased as intelligent, cultured, brave, and altruistic.

2. Be Confident, But Also Humble 

I would say this means owning what you are — all of it — because confidence receives 23 percent more responses.

Example of dating headline that's confident and humble

Most people in a study conducted by the Pew Research Center were drawn to individuals whose profiles were positive but not over-the-top glowing. People don’t tend to believe it if someone seems too good to be true, so be honest but put your best foot forward.

1. Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

Scientists from Barts, the London School of Medicine, and The University of North Texas say you should look at the online dating profiles and headlines of people you are interested in and mirror some of those same things.

Similarity breeds affection. Are the objects of your affection all similarly artistic or athletic or academic? You can use words that parallel theirs.

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Example of dating headline that imitates someone else's headline

Going after the nerdy hipster? Try something like “NPR, IPA, E3, & U-N-Me.”

Going after the career-driven intellectual? Try something like “I hold an MBA, a library card, and high-brow conversation.”

At the End of the Day, Don’t Stress About Your Headline Too Much

In my experience as an online dating coach, many people won’t even see it. They’ll be too focused on your pics and the details of your profile to make this your online dating Achilles’ heel. It is something you have to write on many dating sites, though, so hopefully you’ve picked up some ideas.

If you’re still completely at a loss for what to say, borrow some famous words. Got any quotes, song lyrics, or movie lines you love? No harm in letting someone else’s words string together your thoughts.

Have you seen any online dating headlines you thought were fantastic? Share them in the comments!

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