So you did it—you downloaded a few dating apps. You’re single and ready to mingle, or swipe, as it were. It seems like the matches are pouring in, but then you’re left with a feeling of intimidation. What should you say? Who should you reach out to? Who is worth your time? It can be intimidating. What to say? What to do? We can help.
There are so many ways to strike up a conversation with someone. Dating apps can make it seem both harder and easier to start a conversation like that. It’s hard to reach out to someone knowing you’re both potentially attracted to each other, but the important thing is to remember that you should be yourself, be genuine, and not be creepy. Don’t ask for too much identifying information or too many personal questions, especially if you’re a man speaking to a woman.
What Opening Lines to Avoid
You never want to get off on the wrong foot when sending the first message on a dating app, so it’s best to avoid the cheesy, cliché, or unoriginal phrases that may result in an immediate turn-off for the other person.
1. General Greeting — Using a general greeting like “Hey there” or “What’s up?” is so boring that it may not even elicit a response. You want to start with a genuine greeting to show you’re truly interested.
2. Awkward Compliment — Immediately jumping into awkward phraseology and saying things like “Looking fine” or “Aren’t you a cutie” makes things weird from the beginning, so it’s best to send earnest compliments over rash ones.
3. Outdated Cliché — Saying odd one-liners that don’t have any direct appeal to anyone, such as “You come here often?” or “You must’ve fallen from heaven,” is probably one of the easiest ways to end a conversation before it even starts.
4. Boring One-Liner — Saying something too basic, such as “Cool car” or “Nice dog” is just not the type of enthusiasm other singles want to see. Instead, they would rather you relate or elaborate on what you like about it in a complimentary way.
5. Aggressive/Creepy — Being too forward or lewd right off the bat is a huge no-no, even if it’s saying something like “Sup cutie” or “ You’re hot.” No one likes being objectified by someone they don’t even know.
The Best Opening Lines to Start a Conversation
When making a first impression, you want to not only show your interest in your prospective match but also want to display your own personality in order to stand out amongst the masses. Remember, you never know how many options a match may be getting to know, so you want to say something that is both memorable and indicative of your character.
Use Bits From Their Own Profile
One of the best and easiest ways to appeal to a match is by commenting on or relating to something in the profile pictures or bio they’ve put on display. Here are some of the ways you can use this face-value information:
6. Compliment Their Smile — If someone’s smile causes you to sincerely stop, take notice, and feel joy, let the person know! This can be a wholesome way of stating attraction without being weird.
7. Inquire About Hobbies — Take a look at what a match enjoys doing in their personal time and ask them about it, or, if you also partake in that activity, attempt to connect over it to make a connection straight away.
8. Gush Over Pets — One thing many people can agree on is showing affection for pets, so letting a match know you like their dog, cat, or bearded dragon can go a long way. It then allows you to relate to your shared love for animals and proves you’re a pet person.
9. Relate Over Travel — Everyone’s explored different places, so whether you’ve been to a place your match has visited or are curious about what traveling somewhere is like, you can strike up a conversation and ask about what their experience was like.
10. Talk About Music — Everyone listens to music, and coming together over your love for a genre or artist can go a long way, even leading to future dates at a concert. Music is an easy, relatable topic that is always ripe for discussion and debate.
11. Describe Their Energy — If you’re looking to be more on the spiritual side, you can comment on the type of energy emitted by your match and why it draws your attention. Pointing out someone has radiant vibes or displays spooky qualities can show a sincere attempt to relate to them.
Talk About Your Shared City
When you’re searching for matches in online dating apps, you likely share at least one thing in common — your location. It may not be in the same city or neighborhood, but your range must be within physical reach for future encounters. Here are a few ways you can come together over your shared geographic location:
12. Discuss Shared Activities — If you see your match participating in an activity at a particular place you frequent or notice they’ve been in or around your social scene, reach out and see if you have mutual connections or if you can do that leisurely activity together.
13. Ask About New Places — Noticing a match has been somewhere around town that’s new or that you haven’t visited yourself allows you to ask about how their experience was. Not only will this break the ice, but it also gives you insight for personal reference.
14. Relate Over Food Spots — Everyone loves eating, and since dating often revolves around grabbing a bite to eat, it’s easy to talk with others about their favorite food destinations in the local area, especially hidden gems you can promote or discover.
15. Discuss Outdoor Options — Many people enjoy a break from their home and work lives, and an easy way to revitalize the senses is to take a trip outdoors. If you see the other person is active, try discussing your favorite parks, hiking spots, or swimming destinations.
16. Inquire About Past Residences — Not everyone is from the place they currently live, so your match may not be as familiar with an area as you are. However, it still provides an opportunity to ask about where they’re from if you notice out-of-state photos or apparel.
Use References From Pop Culture
We are all constant consumers of various forms of media, and whether you’re into movies, sports, literature, politics, or just online social media culture, it’s likely you can connect over shared references, humor, or knowledge. Here are a handful of examples declaring how:
17. Use Lines From Movies or TV — Unless you’re anti-tech (which wouldn’t land you on a dating app), everyone watches television and has favorite movies. If your match notes a favorite in their bio, try using an iconic quote to share your enthusiasm while remaining flirtatious.
18. Reference Memes — With internet culture purveying itself through every medium, it can be both comical and clever to use an applicable meme as an introduction. Be careful to not choose vague references, though, as your match needs to get the joke.
19. Bond Over Sports — One of America’s most unanimous cultural pastimes is sports, and if you’re able to come together over local teams or a shared out-of-state fandom, this can become an instant connection. You can even bond over teams you both dislike!
20. Comment About Current Events — If you notice your match is a big news person or volunteers in local initiatives, you can discuss local events and how their opinions or impacts on the situation will influence future endeavors. It can never hurt to be communicative about real issues.
22. Utilize Trendy Lingo — There’s a tone of niche verbiage these days when it comes to subcultures and certain fanbases, so capitalizing on certain terminology when it applies to something your match would understand is a huge power move.
23. Comparison Icebreaker — Another simple way to get the conversation going is a comparison icebreaker. Asking, “Which Marvel character do you identify with?” or “Who’s your favorite all-time player for [insert team]?” is a good way to relate and see their creativity up-front.
24. Ask for Opinion On Something — If you notice your match is into a particular shared subject matter that you’re passionate about, ask their opinion on the matter and see what they say. Once the conversation gets rolling, you never know where it will go!
Just Be Direct With Your Opening Lines
It’s never a bad idea to be straightforward when first interacting with a match. After all, that’s the way approaching a person in a physical setting would transpire, and you can be seen as more confident and proactive when doing so.
25. Point Out Funny Details — When you notice a quirky nuance on someone’s profile, it can be fun to point it out. Showing you pay attention to detail or “get” something on their profile makes your match much more likely to respond in a friendly manner.
26. Ask About Their Career — If you notice a match takes pride in their career or professional work life, asking them about it and showing interest in what they do will provide reassurance that you care about their lifestyle.
27. Confess Your Attraction — It’s never a bad thing to be honest about your feelings for someone, and complimenting anyone on their beauty is a huge move that can also come across as too forward. Be sure to be praiseful while also respectful.
28. Address Interests Directly — When you notice you share something in common with your match, don’t hesitate to take the opportunity to be vocal about it. Immediately pointing out your shared love for reading or fishing can streamline talking points and give you a common topic to bond over.
29. Request Advice — If you notice your match is a savant at a particular subject or may have certain advice on a hobby or travel idea, don’t hesitate to ask them about it. They will feel appreciated for their knowledge and will likely give you advice on the matter.
30. Pull Niche Quotes — Have an inclination that your match is into a certain author or film style? Don’t resist dropping a reference to the topic! Your match will probably enjoy the fact that you took the time to notice and acknowledge something that’s important to them.
Give Unsolicited Opinion — Whether or not they’re asking, you can offer your opinion or expertise on a particular thing with the intention of hearing your counterpart’s response. Being vocal and opinionated expresses character, which shows you’re willing to be engaged.
Whether you go funny, lighthearted, genuine, or simple, you’ll make the right decision. Mix it up depending on the person you’re talking to and remember to let the conversation flow as naturally as possible. You can do it!