You’re a straight dude and trying to decide which pictures to post to your new online dating profile.
At some point, you will probably ask yourself: shirtless, or no shirtless pics?
Will showing your abs help or hinder your ability to capture the ladies’ attention and affection?
Before you make this very important decision, check out the interesting research below, as well as what women on Reddit have to say about displaying one’s naked torso in the online dating realm.
Before posting a shirtless pic, consider your objectives.
- “When someone has a shirtless shot as their main picture I instantly disqualify them….The message it sends to me is ‘I’m shallow and I’m just looking to hook up.’”
- “Sex? Sure, go shirtless. Meeting someone who actually wants to connect with you as a person and not just a body? Maybe not so much.”
- “I can kind of understand being proud of your body to some degree. Be warned, those kind of pics make a lot of people skip on by because they think you only want sex.”
What do you want to achieve by doing the online dating thing?
Perception is everything. If you’re only interested in hooking up with women, posting a shirtless pic is certainly one way to communicate that. However, if you’d prefer something a little more serious, you may want to hold off on promoting your naked torso.
You want to stay away from selfies altogether (shirtless or otherwise).
- “Dudes that take selfies (especially shirtless ones) are an automatic no for me.”
- “My dating range is 25-32 and if you are in your late twenties to early 30s and still taking shirtless selfies then we are not on the same page.”
- “I draw the line at mirror selfies.”
- “If it’s a bathroom shot or an evident selfie, I think ‘CORNY.’”
As a general rule of thumb for men, Zoosk recommends not posting selfies. Here’s why: selfies decrease a man’s likelihood of receiving messages by 8%. Add the whole shirtless element and we can safely say topless selfies are a huge no-no for guys.
In certain cases, a shirtless photo may fare better than a shirted pic.
- “I mean, the bathroom selfie may be tacky, but if dude’s ripped I wouldn’t really care.”
- “If I’m just looking for a casual hookup, and he does actually have a nice body, then ab-solutely!”
But come on, it’s probably no surprise which shirtless pics have the most success with the ladies. According to research by OK Cupid, if you’re a guy with a nicely sculpted body, you may actually increase your chances of receiving messages than if you leave your top on.
Still, you may want to review and heed tips #1 and #2 before you go too crazy flaunting your six-pack online. Also, you may want to avoid showing your abs as your main profile picture. And consider your audience: older women may not respond as positively to your shirtless photos as their younger peers.
Make it natural, get outdoors and be active.
- “If it looks natural that you would be shirtless in that situation, then sure. If not, no.”
- “If the guy is on the beach playing volleyball, there is a reason besides his own vanity that he is shirtless.”
- “The picture of my now husband, shirtless and holding his (now our) adorable dog in the ocean was what totally got me. Had it been a douchey selfie, not a chance. But nice body + beach + puppy? All systems go.”
The overwhelming number of women on Reddit who discussed shirtless pictures confirmed that context matters. Moreover, Zoosk says that a man increases his likelihood of receiving messages by 19% if he posts an image doing something outdoors. So, if you still wish to post a shirtless photo, steer clear of the bathroom pics.
Don’t overdo the shirtless thing.
- “If a dude is shirtless and flexing in a mirror (gym or bathroom), I’m going to write him off.”
- “Shirtless selfie in bathroom mirror: bad. So bad. Even worse if you’re flexing one arm.”
- “Is that his only picture? If the answer is yes, then he’s rejected. I feel like having lots of shirtless pictures is a little narcissistic.”
Okay, let’s say you do post a shirtless pic. And let’s say you also have great arms! Just please don’t flex your guns—or worse yet, point to said guns (we’ve seen those pictures, and they’re not attractive. At. All.). Basically, if you post a picture like that to your dating profile, you’re pretty much warning others to stay away.
Men: what kind of success have you personally had with shirtless pics? Do you find the number of responses go up…or down? We’d love to hear from you!
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