Adele Leahy Aesthetica Styling Personal Styling

Interview Adele Landscape

Sooo…I’ve been banned from Hinge. Taken off. Un-Hinged, if you like.

It seems a cruel indictment against me, someone who puts a lot of effort into their dating profile. The photos are a mixture of me at my best and at my every day. I tell an accurate description of me in my bio, am clear on what I am looking for and answer the prompts with wit, sarcasm and honesty. My dating profile tells a mini-story and for a discerning dater, can give a solid starting point.

Turns out, that is way too much effort. As a straight woman in her early 40s seeking a straight man of about the same age, most men don’t get seem past the first photo. I know this because I give information in my bio (that sits just under the first photo, a mere quarter screen scroll) that would only be appealing to a small minority of the male population. I state that I am a feminist, that I manage my own business and that I am a personal wardrobe stylist. Whilst these things shouldn’t be so shocking in 2022, given the education the patriarchy has given both genders of this generation, I consider that the average man in their 40s might feel unsure, challenged and with the potential to be judged for how they look. This is ok, I am not looking for the average man and so put information on my dating profile that will filter them out.

As a sneaky sidebar, my job as a stylist is NOT to judge peoples clothing choices but to empower people (who pay me to) to make choices that more accurately reflect their true style. Read this blog post for further thoughts on this topic.

Getting back to my dating profile. So, considering how many and the range of men swiping right to say they would be vaguely interested in some sort of undefined connection of some sort at some point in the near or far future; makes me think they haven’t read my bio, my clever photo captions, my carefully curated language or even looked at the rest of the photos. AT ALL. They have just gone, “oh yeah, she looks alright”. Swipe right. This is unsettling to me.

Granted, the dating profile world is a minefield of insecurity, disappointment and (worse of all) hope. We go at it like a bull at a gate, hoping that a random swipe on someone’s face we like could end in something…anything. People put more effort and discretion into reading a job ad on Seek.com (these don’t usually have pretty pictures) than they do a filtering people they may want to spend time with. After all, the first date process is much like a job interview, isn’t it? We are assessing and judging the whole time. Much like interviews, going on first dates can be nerve-wracking, exhausting, expensive and overwhelming.

Why then, do men apparently act with so little intention not just in their choices (without reading profiles) but also the amount of effort put into their own. The list of things I have come across on dating profiles includes but is not limited to:

  • Group photos of boys For god’s sake, which one are you?
  • Photos with other girls Do you want a threesome or are the only photos you have with your ex-girlfriend?
  • In bio section – “I’ll get to this later”. Sure, I mean, why tell anyone about you? Lets just be non-descript and hope for the best.
  • In response to ‘what is the scariest thing you’ve ever done’ prompt “go on a dating app”. Really?
  • Pictures of men with their penises almost showing. Thanks for confirming you almost have one.
  • Photos of naked men with machine guns, naked men holding a huge crayfish in a suggestive angle, men in their dirty old roommate-from-Notting-Hill underwear drinking beer, naked man in bath with another woman, naked man in front of sunset, naked man doing handstand. How often does this naked in public thing happen, anyway?
  • In response to ‘I’m weirdly attracted to’ prompt; ”women in good shape.” This is weird to you? Also, said by someone who is clearly not in good shape.
  • Truly frightening angles including extreme close ups of faces, foreheads, legs, biceps, six packs and scabs. Yes, scabs.
  • The top five ranking images are: man with fish, man with dog, man with beer, man at beach, mat at some sort of sporting match. Mate, who doesn’t like these things?

To all the men-folk out there I am pleading with you. Begging. Tell me something interesting about yourself. This isn’t just coming from me, it’s coming from my single dating friends and I wager the entire population of dating women. Be brave and tell me who you are. This includes showing respect for your audience by putting up some high quality, well-lit photos that show your face and clothed body (not swinging on a gas cylinder naked whilst clearly looking not sober). Everyone has a story, some giveaways that help build a picture of you as an individual. Let that be seen on your profile. Sure, it can be devastatingly frightening to be authentic and be rejected but honestly, what is being shown on profiles today is devastatingly frightening. Period.

You ARE an interesting person. Or at least, you will be interesting to someone. You don’t need crowds of adoring fans, just a few, even just one person to strike up a chat with because they have seen something they like in your profile. Having a great body is great but it certainly is not everything; after all, I can’t just date your body, I have to date your mind and heart, too. Show me a picture of you doing something you love, personalize it by adding a caption that explains why you love it.

Much like advertising, with online dating we have less than 10 seconds to engage with our potential audience. Think about what you want, think about how you want to be perceived, think about how you are marketing yourself and to who. Whether they mean to or not, most men market themselves, not to women, but to other men. The number of fish, beer and footys I see makes me wonder if they are seeking a boyfriend, not a girlfriend. This can all remedied by thinking about what your target audience may wish to know about you (spoiler alert: it’s not necessarily the size of your guns), what makes you different to the eleventy million other blokes not bothering to fill out their profiles or to use language that helps me see…you.

You are most likely a champion bloke and will have something to offer somebody. Show us this. Let the right person swipe like on you because they are drawn to something that sparks interest in them. If you don’t know how to do this; I can help. Having been in marketing and image development for years. Having grown up surrounded by male cousins, a brother and a male dominated environments, I know how to help you refresh your look and build a profile that speaks to the great person you are.

This brings me back to why I was un-Hinged. In a blatant attempt to gauge market interest in the products I offer to men, I adapted my profile to advertise how I can help blokes re-style themselves, shop, go at dating with intention and attract their ideal partner (whatever that may look like). Obvs, I’ve breached some sort of fine print advertising situation. This is not the point. The point is that men aren’t aware that there is a service that is out there to help them achieve success with online dating. Before I was deleted I had a number of new followers on my Instagram page and my website traffic in the male demographic spiked. Clearly, there’s interest.Guys, I’m here with my machete ready to make clear a path in the dating jungle for you. Book a discovery call now.

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