What should I say on Tinder? – 5 Common Mistakes

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Love it or hate it, Tinder has become a worldwide phenomenon. A lot of my students have asked me whether or not I’ve tried Tinder and what I thought about it, so I check it out myself. After a lot of experimentation and asking everyone I know as well as every match I actually talked to, I’ve compiled a list of the top 10 mistakes men make on Tinder.

Not smiling in their main photo

Just like in online dating profiles, guys try way too hard to look “tough” or “cool” or “sexy” in their profile photos.  Most girls don’t find the serious wannabe James Bond look attractive, they find it lame and – in a lot of cases – hilarious.  Typically, women are attracted to photos of guys with warm, happy smiles.  A photo of you smiling and laughing is far more likely to cause her to tap the “Like” button because smiling conveys healthy emotions, so this should be your main profile photo.  Your main photo should make her want to either immediately hit the “Like” button, or at least tap on your profile and look at the rest of your photos.

With that said, you should also have a couple more photos that convey DHVs.  A photo of you and your friends laughing and hanging out can be good – and even better if there are a few women in the photo.  A photo of you travelling or doing something adventurous because it will give her something to ask about.


People ask me about the shirtless photo sometimes. And while common PUA sense says not to use one in online profiles, I actually did get a decent amount of matches by including a shirtless photo – and I’m not even good shape by any means. The key here is to look like you’re having fun in the shirtless photo, not trying to show off your muscles or tattoos. I wouldn’t put it as your main photo, as that will look try-hard, but I would say at least give it a try for a week or so and see what works for you and your geographical area.

Leaving their description blank

Apparently a surprising amount of guys can’t even be bothered to put even a single sentence in the description section of their profile.  Similarly, too many guys just use a lame funny quote that says nothing about them at all. Even more guys spend too much time writing full, personal bio that tries to hard to impress people.  Your description should be short and convey a fun, confident personality.

Messaging something generic 

Women receive hundreds of messages all saying the same bullshit. The most common messages are various permutations of “hey”, “what’s up?”, “how you coin?”, and every possible combination you can imagine. Women also sometimes post photos of themselves with their pets, but because it’s such an obvious topic that most men who are trying to be original comment on, they are bored of receiving the same message about their “cute puppy” or how their “cat is so adorable”.

Make your message short and sweet, but attention getting. It needs to set you apart from the barrage of guys that they are getting messaged by. Ideally you want your message to be something clever that relates to your profile or, failing that, her photos (while avoiding anything that the “average” guy would typically comment on).  But be careful here, as what you may think is funny may be extremely inappropriate.  Which sort of brings me into the next two mistakes…


Using lame pick-up lines

It seems like Tinder has become the place where every guy thinks the best way to get a girl is by using the same lame-ass generic pick-up lines you would laugh at while reading a click bait “top 10 worst pock-up lines of all time”. They are either corny or generic or just plain socially unintelligent.  Some guys try to bait women into messaging them back using riddles or jokes that will obviously be lame or rude. Very few women are going to respond to these messages.  And those that do are only mildly curious about what the end of the joke will be, and will not care much about carrying on any meaningful conversation afterwards.

Going sexual right away

Too many guys start with making comments about their looks, their body, or making sexual advances right off the bat. Some even blatantly ask women if they are “dtf?” right in the first message.  This is the “knock on enough doors and eventually one will open” mentality.  To me, this is not a good use of your time.  I personally like the “learn how to knock, and many doors will open” mentality.

You have to calibrate your game to her responses. Unless she herself is going sexual, it’s far better to try to exchange numbers and build comfort on the phone and set up a proper meet outside of the app.  You don’t want to be yet another guy trying for a “Tinder hookup”.


The best way to work Tinder is to convey the vibe of a fun, cool, confident guy in your photos, description, and messages.  You must stand out from all the other guys you send the same stereotypical messages as the last hundred guys.  Engage her on topics relating to things from her photos and profile, but avoid anything obvious that the average guy would make a comment on.  Gauge her interest levels based on her responses and avoid reeking of yet another guy just trying to hook up with her.

Happy sarging,


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2 Responses to "What should I say on Tinder? – 5 Common Mistakes"
  1. I wrote a response on this in the QA for VenusianArts on how to pickup girls on Tinder. Have a look..

    Marco Segreti

  2. Captain Jack says:

    Great comments… I’d like to add that I usually pull them off Tinder and into texting via phone. The reason is because the last thing I want is for my texting on the app to be driving her back into the app where she is getting more matches and further into conversations with other guys.

    You become more “real” if you’re texting on the phone and then move to a voice conversation after a few text exchanges.

    Captain Jack

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