If you read my last opus, you know I have strong opinions when it comes to dating apps, and the Tinder vs. Hinge debate is one that’s close to my heart. Why? Because I don’t have much going on in my life. The landscape of dating apps and websites is as vast as it is depressing, but for our purposes, I’m simply going to examine the differences between these two apps, so please save your “Tinder and Hinge BOTH suck, it’s all about HookerHound.com” comments.
You’re welcome, HookerHound, for the free plug.
(Cue tons of you weirdos googling HookerHound)
Haters describe Hinge as merely a Tinder copycat, with the only difference being that all your potential matches are mutual friends of your Facebook friends/mutual friends of your Facebook friends’ friends. To boil it down to that completely misses the more subtle, but substantial, differences. Yes, Hinge is similar to Tinder in that you are presented with a profile of the opposite sex (or same sex, I ain’t here to judge), and you give him/her a ‘like’ or a ‘pass.’ If you both like each other’s profiles, boom, you’ll receive a notification that will certainly stroke your ego, and will hopefully lead to other things being stroked. You now both have the capability to message each other. Love is sure to blossom. But those are where the similarities end and Hinge proves its superiority. Let’s examine.
1. Creep Factor – “Online dating is just so creepy” – Most Girls, 2014.
Not gonna argue with this. Guys are huge creeps to girls in real life, so if you add the anonymity of a phone as a buffer, it’s to be expected that the creep factor is gonna be amped up to the nth degree. In talking to girls, which I’ve been known to do on occasion, the creepiness of messages they receive on Tinder, blows Hinge out of the water. The reason? Accountability.
Because there’s a mutual friend, or friend of friend, in common between matches, the dudes who would normally open with a “you look like you could use a good dicking,” are too afraid that you’ll run and tell the mutual friend about their perverted ways. So, they scale it back and go with a more appropriate, “hey, you look fun.” Awww. What a gentleman. What does it mean when there are less creepy guys scaring the normal girls away? You guessed it, WAY HOTTER GIRLS.
2. Reconnaissance – Going on a blind Tinder date is like buying concert tickets on Craigslist. The tickets could be legit and you could get a great deal, OR…you could be raped and murdered (Ed. Note: … by prices?). Now you know before you go. Since you have mutual friends with your potential dates, you can do your homework before committing. I’ve had many convos with mutual friends of matches like the one below when weighing whether or not to take a girl out. Names have been changed:
Me: Hey – I’m chatting with this girl Mischa Barton on Hinge. She looks pretty hot and chill. What’s her deal?
Jennifer Lawrence: She hasn’t changed her Facebook profile pics since The OC ended. She’s swelled to disturbing proportions as a result of drugs and poor decisions. Stay away.
Me: Bummer….How come you and I never dated, btw?
Jennifer Lawrence: I gotta go dry my hair now.
3. Vital Stats – Hinge connects to your Facebook account, and auto-uploads your vitals: Age, High School, College, Employer, Likes. It also has you manually fill in your height and religion, if you so chose. By having all that info already in front of you, it cuts out a lot of the awkward “what’s this person’s deal…” chatter that you find on Tinder.
For girls, a lot of that chatter involves finding out if you are tall. “I love high heels, hehe, like disturbingly high. They’re basically stilts. How does that strike you?” If you’re a short guy, yeah, it’s a bummer that many girls care so much about that, but if they’re the type of girl who would never date a guy under 6 foot, wouldn’t you rather know that prior to spending a week chatting with her, then paying to take her out on a date? The disappointment written all over her face when you ride into the bar on a child’s bicycle will certainly be a knock to your ego, and you don’t need that. Same goes for religion. Some people have specific requirements about the religion of someone they would consider dating long term. For example, I have a vitriolic hatred of Jews. I don’t want one in the same vicinity as me, much less on a date with me. By knowing ahead of time which girls are chosen people, I can make my choices accordingly.
(Please save your angry letters. That was clearly a joke – I’m Jewish and I LIVE for Jewish girls. My go-to keyword search when looking for porn is “Jewish girls complaining”).
4. Finite Number of Profiles Per Day – Tinder allows you to keep swiping until you literally run out of girls in your area. But a swiping spree on any random day quickly makes it clear that quantity certainly does not equal quality. Hinge gives you a finite number of matches per day. Since I’m only given twelve profiles a day, I take a more serious look at each profile, and weigh the pros and cons of dating that girl as if giving them a “like” might result in a walk down the aisle. When you can mindlessly swipe hundreds of girls while watching Bar Rescue, it makes it feel less personal.
Not to mention, the super hot girls on Tinder probably get likes from literally every dude, so if she’s active on the app, her inbox is flooded, and it’s tough to get a response.
5. About Me Section – Hinge’s About Me section allows users to check any number of boxes that add a little color to your profile, so that you’re more than just a pretty face. They have about fifty options: everything from Film Fanatic to Bookworm, Vegan to Die-Hard Carnivore, and a ton of options in between. Why don’t they just let you write this in yourself the way Tinder does? Probably a couple reasons, but the main one is that people are idiots.
Girls rarely use Tinder’s About Me section to give you any tangibly useful information about the type of person they are. How many Tinder profiles have you read where girls declare that they “love to laugh,” or that they enjoy “living life to the fullest?” Right, so, that gives you literally zero concrete info about what type of person they are. Most profiles give you about as much info as “I enjoy oxygen AND food!” Hinge’s About Me section gives you practical info that can help you assess your compatibility with a potential mate. Take a hike Early Bird, Political Junkie, Smoker Girl!
And to those of you who are gonna be annoying and claim, “Tinder already has the mutual friend feature, too, this is bullshit,” first of all, watch your goddamn tone. Second, you’re not getting it. I don’t know about you, but when I’m on Tinder, the best matches are always the ones I have mutual friends with. Not saying you can’t find quality chicks on Tinder, but it’s like saying, “why would I go to a USC sorority party, when there are hot chicks on the F train?” Sure, I bet there actually are randomly, hot chicks on the F train, but do you really want to weed through the pool of hobos and mariachi bands in order to find them?
Right now, Hinge is only available in a couple of cities, but they’re rapidly expanding. The functionality of the app was a little iffy in the beginning because of their exponential growth, but they’re constantly improving it to make it better. So, go forth and experience the beauty ofHinge love for yourself. And tell your matches, Brandon sent you…;)
Actually, don’t do that, they’ll be very confused and immediately stop responding.