The Duality of White Claw

Ah, White Claws. Fizzy, fun and calorie-friendly. Aside from being a popular hard seltzer, it has also been coined as a new term in the dating world. 

To “White Claw” someone is to pursue a relationship with them based solely on looks, despite not having an actual interest in the individual aside from their appearance. It is dubbed after the drink due to its pretty, enticing packaging despite it tasting pretty bland once you crack one open.

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It may sound ridiculous, but it’s more common than you think. According to a 2019 Plenty of Fish survey that involved one thousand people, 27% between the ages of 18-50 admitted to White Clawing someone. Another 42% said they knew someone who had done it.

Even if you hadn’t thought to give it a term before, dating apps reveal that the phenomenon of White Clawing isn’t quite so outlandish. Apps like Tinder prove that a pretty face or attractive body are what gets the attention, and consequently, the match. A lot of users even skip adding the 500-word summary of what makes them a person, or neglect reading someone else’s.

As Medium puts it, the mindset is “there’s always someone hotter.”

“With matches starting on such superficial grounds, and a thousand other hotties ready for your swipe, there isn’t much incentive to start to become attracted to your potential mate’s actual personality,” said Tynski. In the process, you’ve probably ghosted someone who could have been your real match.

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Physical attraction to a partner is important to the dating scene, but has it become everything? Aside from being overwhelmingly attracted to someone, there’s also a psychological effect of increasing one’s own self esteem when they’re involved with a beautiful person.

“My recent encounter with an extremely beautiful woman had me in a spell…” said Subramanian. Every time we spoke, I knew this was not a match and I needed to end it, but I found it so difficult to do so. Even if we had little in common and were opposite in so many ways, I found it difficult to let go.”

Dating, especially during college, is a turbulent experience to begin with. It’s important to communicate to someone you’re seeing, or White Clawing, that you feel this way. Otherwise, it can lead to unexpected problems.