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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at U Conn chapter.

I downloaded Hinge around two years ago after my last breakup. I had just entered college and had never dated outside of my hometown. I didn’t know how to connect with people (especially after COVID) and gave in to the craze of dating apps. I personally took a liking to Hinge over Bumble and Tinder because I liked the design and the ability to see all of your likes. Here are some things I noticed over the years as an on-and-off user.

Lesbians don’t like bicurious women

Now this is a very generalized statement referring to my own personal experience — when I first made my account, my preferences were open to both men and women because I wanted to explore my sexuality more and Hinge gives you the option to share your sexuality with others. I did get likes from women, and even matched with a few, but I quickly learned my title as a “bicurious woman” was a red flag to many. There is a common occurrence with bisexual or lesbian women, where they will take interest in another woman who claims to be bisexual and she will realize and later reveal that she is more comfortable as heterosexual and prefers men. I completely understand this as a concern in the LGBTQ community, but that resulted in me struggling to find a date and so I kind of gave up on the idea of ever finding a girlfriend. I currently consider myself heterosexual because I’ve only had experiences with the opposite gender.

Men tend to oversexualize conversations

This is pretty obvious to most women who have ever interacted with a man, but there is a growing trend in which men think it’s okay to approach women in a concerningly inappropriate way. When you like someone’s profile on Hinge, it gives you the option to leave a comment on one of their pictures or prompts. This is the very first thing you are saying to this person in an attempt to get their attention and make a potential match. Many of the comments I received were very sexual in nature and said things such as “Can you deep throat” and “Let me eat it.”

As some of you know, there was a time where I shaved my head and wore wigs. I was very open about this on my profile and that resulted in a wave of men asking if they could “pull on my wig during sex.” I like dirty jokes as much as the next person, but there is a way to approach a person for the first time with manners and respect. Nothing turns me off more than when I’m having a decent conversation with a man and he finds a way to sexualize it. The ability to use an app when flirting and hide behind a screen has given too many men the audacity to speak with no decorum.

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The Fetishization of Latinas

Hinge gives you the option to include your ethnicity/descent on your profile, and being Puerto Rican, my profile shows “Hispanic/Latino.” Something I’ve noticed is that 80% of my likes are Caucasian men. This could be because the majority of people on Hinge are white, the area I’m in is predominantly white, or that’s just the type I attract. Regardless, this demographic has proven to be the one to fetishize my ethnicity and culture the most. I very often get basic comments such as “I bet you have an attitude” and “I want you to ruin my life.” The “spicy Latina” trope is very annoying because it enforces the stereotype that all Latinos are toxic and don’t really have anything to offer other than their looks. I’ve had men tell me that they “hate white girls” and would much rather be with a Latina, which is not a compliment at all.

A big pet peeve of mine is when someone leaves a comment under my picture saying “Ice Spice?” While Ice Spice is a beautiful Afro-Latina woman, I do not resemble her in any way and the only reason men on Hinge correlate me with her is because I have short, curly hair. We do not have the same skin color, hair color, curl pattern, or facial features and the only similarity is that we’re both Latina.

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Hook-up culture

Another feature of Hinge is the ability to put what relationship type you’re looking for. There are options such as short-term, long-term, life partner, not sure, etc. In my experience, it doesn’t matter what a man has on his profile, he almost always is only looking to hook up. I’m not sure if it’s something with me that makes them think I’m not cuffing material or if they’re just scared of commitment, but I’ve been on first dates that eventually turn into just booty calls. Usually after the first date, men will almost immediately stop putting in the effort to take you out, and suddenly watching a movie at their house is a “date.” I respect people’s choice to engage in casual sex, but that’s not what I’m on dating apps for and I would like for others to be honest about their intentions from the start. Once I show that I’m interested in more, that is usually when they decide to ghost me.

It’s a Small world

I have my distance preference set to 100 miles for two reasons: I don’t mind driving and I hate seeing people I know on the app. Using the app while I’m in my hometown is a jump scare because I run into a lot of people I went to high school with and that I know too much about. Once, my ex of two years liked my profile and said it was because he had “no self-control.” When I say it’s a small world, I think of this one specific story. I had matched with a man who also lived in my hometown, but had gone to a different high school than me. After some talking, he revealed he has relatives who work at the same place I do. Not only did I realize I worked with his mom, dad, sister, and brother, but that his mom was my boss. I’m not sure why, but that scared me and after a few dates we agreed to just be friends. We’re still good friends to this day, so at least that’s something good to come out of Hinge!

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I’m sure Hinge has brought a lot of people together, but that just hasn’t been the case for me and that’s okay! For me, the increase in technological use for dating has just made it difficult for people to show their authentic selves leading to less meaningful interactions. I’m a hopeless romantic at heart and I still hold the expectation that one day I’ll trip and fall into my future husband’s arms. Until then, I’ll just enjoy being single.

Tatyana is a driven individual, balancing her role as a dedicated nursing aide with her pursuit of higher education in human development. Her ultimate aspiration is to become a registered nurse, a testament to her commitment to healthcare and helping others. Beyond her professional pursuits, Tatyana is fueled by a deep passion for empowering young women and engaging in conversations about mental health and self-growth. She's incredibly girly, with a slight obsession with all things pink and an undying love for her cat, Hallie.