There are so many dating apps to choose from, how do you know which one to use? Here’s a quick and dirty guide to the most popular ones.
Xiomara Blanco is an associate editor for CNET Reviews. She’s a Bay Area native with a knack for tech that makes life easier and more enjoyable. So, don’t expect her to review printers anytime soon.
This is part of CNET’s #adulting series of stories to help you figure out how to live, work and play now that you’re all grown up.
Here’s a short list of the most popular dating apps you can download. While some are just apps, a few also have desktop sites you can log into on your computer — and there’s no shame in using more than one service at a time. If you ever get overwhelmed, or eventually find The One, most let you deactivate or delete your profile.
Oldies, but goodies: OkCupid, Match and Zoosk
These dating apps are the equivalent to a pair of khakis from The Gap; there’s absolutely nothing wrong with them, they’re just overwhelmingly bland compared to what else is out there.
OkCupid, Match and Zoosk are standard fare for traditional dating websites. You can write lengthy paragraphs about your interests, hopes, dreams, fantasy football team or whatever and upload multiple photos. Each has millions of members and full-fledged apps you can download on iOS and Android.
What all the kids are using these days: Tinder
Tinder’s the biggest thing to shake up online dating since “You Got Mail.” It damn near invented the idea of right-swiping for “yes” and has evolved from its original “hookups-only” origin to a more standard dating app.
Tinder puts your pics front and center, and gives you a small space for writing an elevator pitch about yourself. If you’re uncomfortable being primarily judged by your photos, you’re better off with a more traditional site like the ones listed above, where you can impress your future suitor with more details in a meatier written profile.
If religion is most important: CDate, JSwipe and Minder
Religion and faith are driving forces for many people, resulting in the desire to date someone who shares those beliefs, too. Some of the most popular religion-centered apps are CDate (iOS) for Christians, JSwipe (iOS and Android) for those of Jewish faith and Minder (iOS) for Muslims. All require you to log into your Facebook account, however none share your dating details on the social network.
For the easily overwhelmed: Coffee Meets Bagel
Swiping through a sea of faces can be exhausting and paralyze you with indecision. Coffee Meets Bagel presents a slower approach. Every day at noon, guys receive up to 21 matches they can either like or pass on. Then the app curates the optimal matches for women based on the men who showed interest. This way women get to choose who actually gets the chance to talk to them. It minimizes the overwhelming paradox of choice that often comes with online dating.
For elitists: Raya and The League
So, you’re an “important” person who can’t have their dating profile on just any dating site — or you want to date an equally “important” person. Raya and The League are for you.
The League is for anyone who admits they have high standards AKA very picky. It requires you to sign in with Facebook and LinkedIn (to avoid setting you up with friends or co-workers) and you can set super-specific criteria. Because of the vetting process, you’ll find very few catfishers or fake profiles here, not something that’s guaranteed on other apps.