9/14/2012 10:23 AM
It’s always been considered one of the top rules for online dating profiles: do not post shirtless pictures of yourself. Women across the board have always said that those pictures are a turn-off. As one lady said in an internet discussion about shirtless pictures, “when a guy messages me with a self portrait/mirror shirtless pic, I saddle up my Nope horse and ride off into the sunset. Regardless of their actual personalities, it makes them seem generally full of themselves and not someone I would want to date.”
However, a recent study on dating site behavior reveals that shirtless pictures actually get a better reception than the common narrative would suggest. There are just a couple of caveats to consider before you pull out the ab-shot:
The shirtless pictures need to be shown in a context. If it’s just a self-shot picture of you shirtless in your bathroom mirror, it’s kind of gross and weird. On the other hand, if you are swimming or out at the beach, shirtless pictures are fine. Not only do they show off your body a bit, they show that you are an interesting and active guy.
Also, effectiveness of the shirtless photo is closely correlated with age. While 19-year-old guys got many women messaging them first when they included topless pics, the number of messages went down for guys that were older. With guys who were 31-years-old, the number of responses was no higher with a shirtless picture than without.
Chances are, the better your ab definition, the better results you’ll get with shirtless pictures. And, that makes sense: on your dating profile, always play your strengths. And, finally, what if you’ve got a great physique but no pictures of you shirtless in interesting settings? At least wipe the toothpaste off the bathroom mirror before you take the shot.