Crafting the perfect dating profile to attract a potential partner can be challenging. It’s hard to anticipate what the people on the other end of the app will think. Your profile should be unique and reflect your personality, but there are some dating profile don’ts across the board—like using a certain two-letter word. According to dating experts, the one word you should never include in your online dating profile is “no.”
The word “no” is probably present on more dating profiles than you’ve realized. It usually appears in the context of phrases like “no players,” “no drama,” or “no hook-ups.” But including “no” on your profile gives it a pessimistic undertone—even though that’s likely not your intention.
“This is referred to as negative, defensive language,” says online dating consultant Eddie Hernandez. “It suggests the user might be hesitant to give people the benefit of the doubt or at least give people a clean slate to start off a match.” Hernandez suggests replacing this language with more positive framing by focusing on what you do want.
Penning more positive statements that target what you’re actually looking for will more likely attract the right partner for you. Clear, straightforward lines like “casually seeking a committed relationship, eager to connect with those that are seeking a connection with a longterm focus,” are optimal, according to Hernandez.
Focusing on what you don’t want from a match puts a wall up between you and possible romances. “It’s hard enough to connect with people on dating apps already. Adding in negativity, in any way, only serves to drive people away,” says professional dating profile writer Eric Resnick. Including too much negative language makes potentially great matches move right past you to avoid your baggage and negativity, he says.
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Another word to avoid in the family of “no” is “not.” “Dating profiles should be positive. Saying ‘not looking for’ or ‘this type of person need not message me’ immediately inputs a negative tone into your profile,” says dating and relationship coach Kat Winny. “Profiles should you be upbeat, positive, and engaging.”
So put some pep in your profile by highlighting what you want instead of what you don’t. And if you’re wondering about other people’s turn-offs, This Is the Biggest Dealbreaker for Men, Study Says.