I never saw myself as a Tinder dater.
There's a certain stigma attached to it that no amount of rebranding will ever get rid of. It's a fairly shallow app.
But after several months of being single, curiosity got the better of me.
I decided to jump on board the Tinder Express.
It didn't take much swiping before I started talking to some decent guys.
At least, that's what I thought, anyway.
Truth be told, I've been on plenty of first dates. Yet, I've only agreed to a second date once.
So, what gives?
Well, Tinder people, these are the things you're doing wrong:
1. You look nothing like your profile picture.
I know everyone looks better online. But it's one thing to play around with Instagram filters and another to make yourself look like Channing freakin' Tatum.
Then, when you turn up looking like Papa Smurf, it's just awkward for everyone involved.
Take pics with good lighting, sure. But don't catfish your date.
2. You made zero effort.
First dates tend to be arranged in casual places. There's nothing wrong with that.
But when you show up in your sweatpants and sneakers, it just seems like you couldn’t care less.
Do I like a guy who works out? Yes.
Do I want to see his sweaty gym clothes the first time I meet him? No.
First impressions count for a lot.
So make a little effort with your wardrobe choices, even if you're just grabbing coffee.
3. You're self-involved.
We've all been on those dates where an awkward silence fills the room. It's the worst.
But I’d rather sit in silence than listen to my date talk about himself the entire time.
One of my dates spent 45 minutes talking about his life before he realized he hadn’t asked me a single question or let me get a word in edgewise.
Once I got the chance to speak, he continued to yawn throughout.
No. Just no.
4. You brag about your job.
Being passionate about what you do is super admirable.
But when it gets to the point of showing off, it's just plain cringe.
You could be the queen's personal harpist for all I care. That's not going to be the reason I’d choose to go on another date with you.
Most of us aren’t bothered about status: We just want an arrogance-free conversation.
5. You have your phone out.
As Millennials, we love to be glued to our mobile phones at any given moment.
On a first date, however, it's just rude.
I know it's tough.
You're in a group chat on WhatsApp, and if you don't look at your phone for over an hour, you'll end up with a stream of 600 messages to read.
But for the sake of your date, text your friends later.
6. You're rude to the server.
Seeing how you treat the people who serve you is telling of your character.
Just because he or she is waiting on you, that doesn’t give you the right to not say "please" when you order or "thank you" when your food is served.
Be polite, smile (but not too much) and always leave a tip.
7. You let your inner weirdo out too early.
As humans, it's safe to say we're all a little weird.
Whether it's turning the light off three times before you leave the house or the fact that you still listen to Britney's first album on repeat, we all have our quirks.
But in the company of a stranger, these quirks are not endearing: They're just plain weird.
I'm not saying you shouldn't be yourself on the first date. Just be the best version of yourself.
Once your date starts falling for you, he or she will come to accept you for the lovable weirdo you are.
But for now, keep it under wraps.
8. You spoke way too much about the ex.
Whether your last relationship ended in a complete disaster or you get on so well he or she just called to see how it was going, I don't care.
Talking way too much about your ex screams you're not over it yet.
No one wants to go on a date with someone who can't let go of his or her last relationship.
If your past relationship comes up, simply say your ex wasn't the right one for you.
Then, move on.
9. You didn't offer to pay.
This one always divides opinion.
The end of the date is nearing, and it's that awkward moment before the bill appears.
So, who should pay?
I'm pretty traditional at heart. I think it's common courtesy that the man should offer to pay the bill.
That's not to say I won't pay my half. I most certainly will.
But if a guy at least offers to pay, that's good enough for me.
10. You wanted to have sex on the first date.
I know we met on Tinder, but not everyone on there is looking for a cheap hookup.
A first date is reserved for getting to know a stranger, but not in the physical sense.
It's not the time to ask if I like S&M or try to find out if I give good head.
When it comes to the end of the night, it really differs from person to person.
But generally, tell your date you had a good time, place a kiss on his or her cheek and make sure to get home okay.
Come on guys, just be gentlemen.
It's not that difficult.