Profile Review - Week of May 09, 2017

I'm sorry to say the problems with these photos extend far beyond lighting. I agree with you that your struggle appears to be knowing what makes you look appealing in a photo - common problem! If you're going the DIY route, there are loads of online guides to help with this; read a few on how to look good in photos, how to take a good selfie, general male fashion and grooming advice, and perhaps some of the guides specific to Tinder, and just keep trying. However, I know you might find it awkward, but do ask your friends to help with photo-taking. It'll be much faster. Choose a friend who's both sympathetic to your plight, but also mean enough to boss you around a little and offer criticism (constructive, hopefully!). You also want someone with a good eye, who can take a good photo, and maybe also can help you with styling and posing too - playing up your good features and downplaying your weaknesses. If you have no such friend, and have the means, throw some money at the problem. Get a professional portrait photographer to take one casual and one professional shot of you (eg. for Linked In). You can use the photos for the next 5 or even 10 years, and it's usually money well spent. Everybody has good things they can play up, and vice versa. If you're struggling with that (identifying your natural assets), r/Tinder isn't the sub for that. Go to a grooming or rating sub. But I consider myself brutally harsh, and they are far worse! So fair warning!

With all that said, a few more specific comments on your current set of photos and some suggestions for future photo-taking are:

(1) Photo 1 is unflattering. Photos taken from below usually are. I always say to avoid any shot in which people can see up your nostrils. The angling of your face to the side, plus looking down, in that shot is also exacerbating your squint, hooding your eyelids, and making your face appear excessively long. I would not include this shot and would try to avoid repeating this photo taking angle - try to keep the camera level with your head!! Also try to keep your head more neutrally aligned so that you're facing forwards or only a slight head tilt - a good friend will probably be able to sort out what's your most facially flattering position.

(2) Photo 2 is terribly blurry on my screen. The frat boy vibe of this shot completely jars with the other photos in your set, which have a much more geeky/dweeby vibe. I just can't reconcile it, this shot seems so out of place! If this shot is the most reflective of who you really are, then your profile badly needs a complete overhaul, as it's currently not at all consistent with that!

(3) This is not a bad shot of you. The photo-taking angle is so much more flattering than photo 1 and the squint is minimised and much gentler on the eye of the viewer. I'm so mad on your behalf that there's a plastic bag and a pair of OAP hands behind your head! The background around your head is just so distracting, it ruins the shot. Such a shame. Try for symmetry with head shots. For example, that shot would be better if it were only blue seats around your head. Even better if they were blurred (do any of your friends own a DSLR camera? really helps) It would be less visually distracting.

(4) This shot should have served as both your full body shot and your social group shot. But it's terrible. You look like you have a physical disability there - barrel chest and short limbs, like Alex Brooker - and your head looks like it's been photoshopped onto the body. You're also further back and in shadow compared to the rest of the group, adding to the Photoshopped-in effect, reinforcing the overall impression that you're not part of the pack and not as cool as your friends and not really meant to be there and have been transplanted in. I'd nix this shot!

(5) I've no idea why you're kissing a wall in photo 5. It's a super grainy photo. I don't think this photo would pique anyone's interest enough to match you and ask what's happening. Some funny/weird shots can spark a match and get a convo happening if it's something that makes people curious or laugh, but once something is too weird, people will just swipe left.

(6) You look like a cross between Adam Sandler and Kevin Sussman. Google photos of both of them, note which shots are attractive and which are not, and then try and apply the lessons to your own photos, or just try and replicate their best shots.

(7) You look better in dark blue than black, I'd particularly avoid black near your face (eg. collars that go up your neck like photo 1 would be out, but you may be able to get away with a black jacket if what's underneath is a different colour and is sitting closer to your face and hair than the jacket's edge)

(8) If you're not particularly nerdy IRL, then you need to urgently remove these aspects from your profile. For example, re-do your bio, have more confident expressions and posing, add some sporting or outdoor hobbies into your photos or bio, and try to put some more masculine features in your photos - there are lots of online tips for this, so google it if this is all foreign to you.

(9) If you are looking for hook-ups, your profile needs way more sex appeal. I would go hypermasculine with the photos if this is the case. Can you grow facial hair? This might change your look quite a bit. Definitely try the male grooming sub for advice if relevant.

(10) As an interim move, I'd put photo 3 into first position, see if you can dredge up a shot of you doing something outdoors that gives people a sense of your height and body type, and pick any other social/group shot than the one you're currently using. You have very attractive and nice looking friends. If there's not another shot from that same occasion, get another one at the earliest opportunity. They're an easy asset for you to exploit. Similarly, if you have a pet, include a shot with him/her for easy Tinder points.

HTH and good luck on Tinder.

/r/Tinder Thread Parent