Well played Julio, well played.

Men’s shirtless pics: hot or not? 5 tips to help you figure out your “topless strategy

Advice, Right Swipe Pics Comments (16)

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.


Shirtless guys on Tinder

Shirtless guys on Tinder


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.


Headless torso selfie

Headless torso selfie


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.


Idc he's RIPPED

Idc he’s RIPPED


 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.


Well played Julio, well played.

Well played Julio, well played.


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.


Douchey Shirtless pics on Tinder

Douchey Shirtless pics on Tinder


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!

RightSwipePics.com does lifestyle photography for dating profiles and social media. Tested and shown to *more than double* matches on Tinder and vastly improve response rates. RightSwipePics.com currently serves South Florida, NYC, Houston, Austin, Dallas, and San Francisco. To book your photo session or for more information, visit www.rightswipepics.com.


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On July 16, 2015

16 Responses to Men’s shirtless pics: hot or not? 5 tips to help you figure out your “topless strategy

  1. Alex says:

    I am 18 and mainly looking for casual stuff so I recently switched to a shirtless mirror selfie (I know it’s super douchey) and since (I know this sounds super cocky) I have a really good body my matches and responses went up around 300%. I am 6’1″, 185 lbs at 10% body fat college soccer player so that’s probably the only reason it worked.

  2. A guy says:

    I know this is an older post, but since this topic is general I’d like to share my two cents. Choosing whether to add shirtless pictures or not is a double edged sword. Overdo it (in terms of number of pictures or the setting and/or quality of the pictures) and you may be perceived as a shirt time fling only (i.e. purely physical relationship). Don’t have them at all, and then risk being perceived as a bit dull or perhaps not being active and not keeping in shape. They key is to balance it, because, believe it or not, women do like to see a (fit) male body in the right context, for example on a beach. So here’s my tips:

    – Context: Choose a natural setting, a warm summer day on a beach or when changing clothes etc.

    – Fitness: No worries, looks aren’t everything in a seriious relationship. You don’t have to portray Arnold Scwharzenegger sized muscles, but let’s be real. In online dating, women have the upper hand most of the time. I’m not saying it applies to absolutely all dating sites, but in general there are fewer women than men on a typical dating site. Also, women tend to receive more messages, so it’s importan to stand out from the crowd. And while an outstanding personality and healthy interest is the most important and get you a long way, you’d really want to be the guy with a good personality _and_ a body that could be the midpage of the next issue of playgirl rather than a guy with a good personality and beergut.
    – Quality: Skip the “mirror selfie” as most mobile cameras are of poor quality. Lighting may also not be that good. The point is, all things being equal, having a good physique may be the reason why a girl picks you over the guy with a regular body.

    – Quality: Avoid using your mobile phone. While their quality has increased throughout the past few years, they are still limited compared to a proper camera. Purchase or hire/borrow a proper mirror reflex camera, learn to use it and take your pictures in proper lighting. I can’t stress that last part enough, because the right amount of light will simply make you look better, especially the tone of your skin. I memember I once had two pictures on an older dating site, they were exactly the same (equally fit in both pictures, same room, same context etc.) but I had more compliments and interest in the picture with proper lighting.

    Also, consider having pictures taken by someone else as this usually yields the best quality. This other person should preferably be a woman, as she has the best prerequisites to know how to make the pictures sexy. This could be an old date that didn’t work out for example (as in my case), but where you decieded to remain friends. This is a great arrangement if she’s interested in photography as it helps to make you more confident around women. At last it encourages hitting the gym and sticking to your diet as it adds accountability to equation. When you know you’ll have a photoshoot at a specific time you’ll be serious about looking your absolute best.

    Adding the pictures to your profile: My experience is, never use a shirtless picture as profile picture or early in your portfolio. Most women tend to not want the unsolicited shirtless picture. Have them in it’s own album for example, then she can view them when she has gotten to know you for a bit and wants to find out if you’re “hot” compared to the other guys she’s considering. Make it natural, show a progression from fully clothed to shirtless.

    • LR says:

      Most women usually meet men through their families, friends, or colleagues, even though some don’t like it, as to why there are fewer women in online dating sites. Most women you’d find on online dating sites are married in which their husbands or their grown sons are hacking their accounts to threaten men they come in contact with.

      • Fabio says:

        This guy must lead a crazy life!! I’ve never met a married woman online, let alone her creepy son trying to keep men away?? What world does this guy live in??

  3. Linda says:

    A guy I know but haven’t seen in many years, just hit me up on Facebook, and shortly into the conversation sent a shirtless pic and winky faces. I haven’t spoken to him since.

    • Linda says:

      Even worse, he is not in shape. Why would someone do that? Ugh.

      • Maria ‘JPEG’ Izaurralde says:

        I would love to know the answer to this question, it’s happened to me as well!

        • Jo says:

          Me too. I don’t get it. I think it could be a male/female lost-in-translation / Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus thing… I think that not all men that post those pictures are purely vain, don’t get me wrong, some very much are, but I think some feel a certain pressure and may be desperately trying to win you over and feel good about being in shape and hope you find their body attractive. Whereas for most women, a lot of us are not really very confident about out bodies, at least I’m not. So a man sending me a photo of his hot body (before he and I really get to know each other) only highlights my own insecurity with my not so perfect body. And then I deduce the man to being shallow, and say, Goodbye. When maybe the man wasn’t shallow and did like me and was just doing what he thought in the hopes I would find him more attractive… dunno… interesting topic of conversation though.

    • Nat says:

      I just died! Lolol! “Haven’t spoken to him since” so reminded about self. Still trying to figure where they do that at lol.. Clowns.

  4. Emma Smith says:

    Shirtless pictures can be very attractive in a dating profile. If you’re going to use one, it should look like a professional modeling photo, or else it should be in context. Don’t do a mirror selfie.

  5. The results indicated that not only do they get more frequent replies, they often have women messaging them first. There is some self-selection that happens here – most of the guys who would post a shirtless pic have a body to show off.

  6. OKCupid did an analysis of how men posting shirtless pictures fare. The conventional wisdom is that they should fare worse and that posting them is a bad idea. The results indicated that not only do they get more frequent replies, they often have women messaging them first.

  7. But the shirtless photos are weird imo as he’s the president’s bodyguard right, not some models.

  8. tiger says:

    I think its double standard to say shirtless photo don’t have appeal to women cuz when I started posting my shirtless pics(I have good and fit body tho) I started getting more matches and more hookup requests I think a lot of women are into image plasticity that means they will like but will no its not cool.ANd all that

  9. abubakar says:

    I mean some people just wanna post shirtless picks because they just don’t care about other people they just want it to be there like its a normal thing.

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