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After talking to many of my friends, especially those who frequently and avidly date online, I’m here to reassure you that dating during this unprecedented time is totally possible – as long as you take the right steps.

Whether you’re alone in your school dorm or quarantining in your parents’ house, I’m here to give you essential tips for finding your perfect match (or just a quick, fun fling) this holiday season. This advice will be the perfect boost you need to get back out there! I’ve surveyed my sexually liberated and adventurous friends to see what they have to say about the most popular available dating apps; with the large variety of dating apps out there, it can be tricky to know where to start. 

Here are reviews of some of the most well-established apps; my friends have interesting stories about all of them!

Also, it’s important to note that all three of these dating apps embrace all sexual orientations and identities. 

Download the right app for you!

Tinder 

If you’re into casual dating and looking for a quick fling (or even a one-time thing), I suggest trying Tinder. It’s exciting, straightforward, and a quick way to meet someone new. If you’re looking for a sexy distraction instead of a romantic relationship, Tinder is definitely for you.

However, before I stir up too much controversy among those who found their long-term partners on Tinder, any app can defy stereotypes – so don’t discount Tinder if you’re looking for something more serious. 

Bumble

Next, if you’re all about female empowerment, which I certainly am, Bumble is the right app for you. Women are encouraged to make the first move on Bumble, which is why the app attracts powerful, ambitious, and assertive women.

While women can technically make the first move with any app, Bumble encourages women to slide into his DMs, and it's certainly a space that aims to make women feel more comfortable being assertive.

Bumble itself puts it best: “the app was originally designed to disrupt traditional gender roles in heternormative dating… [and] same-sex dating as well.” This empowering setup works for women seeking all genders, so be bold and make the first move!

Come on ladies, it’s time to overthrow the patriarchy and the notion of prince charming. Let’s take control of our love lives with Bumble.

Hinge 

Lastly, my personal favorite app is Hinge, which definitely lives up to its slogan – "designed to be deleted.” All of my friends who’ve used Hinge have not only had positive experiences, but have also made it to at least the second date with their matches. Many of them have even ended up in committed relationships.

Hinge definitely attracts people who are genuinely looking for connections and relationships instead of quick one-night stands and unsolicited pictures (if you know what I mean!)

I actually have a friend who I dropped off on a Hinge date (and yes, I stalked her on Find My Friends the entire time, because I’m that friend), and three months later, they’re still going strong. So, hop on the Hinge train if that’s what you’re looking for!

The trick to finding the perfect match instead of a one night fling is making your profile authentic and looking for people who seem genuinely compatible.

After you choose the right app for you, make a profile that presents a genuine version of yourself. Don’t spend hours choosing your best face-tuned pictures because that’s the first step to setting yourself up for failure. You’ll feel too much pressure to live up to the photoshopped and “perfect” version of yourself; I guarantee you’ll experience a better outcome if you present your most authentic self on your profile.

Don’t worry about having an Instagram-esque profile, because there are plenty of people out there who will genuinely like you for who you are. You're your own biggest obstacle, so don’t be afraid to get out there and meet your potential match. It’s all you, boo! 

At the end of the day, if all else fails, you’ll at least end up with some pretty iconic party stories!

P.S. Before I sign off and leave you with my wisdom, I have one more essential tip: do not, under ANY circumstances, meet a match without notifying a friend who can track your location to make sure you’re home at the end of the night...or the morning!

Carly is a senior in the College majoring in PPE and minoring in Consumer Psychology. When she's not cackling at old Vines, she is probably binge watching YouTube videos and treating herself to a relaxing self-care routine. She is an astrology and Sudoku enthusiast and loves reading in her spare time...if that's what her horoscope is telling her to do.
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