An endless roster of actively seeking singles (even ones with really niche preferences) are now accessible on your commute, and profiles are swamped with Uber ratings, food preferences and requests that we follow these complete strangers on Instagram (like we weren't going to stalk you anyway). With all this to consider, how are you expected to find time to pick the best dating apps to bless with your presence? How do you know what apps have the 'best' single people lurking on them?
Coffee Meets Bagel is one of the more popular dating apps out there. Every day at noon, men will get a curated list of women in their area. Women will get a curated list as well, but the list will prioritize men who have already expressed interest. Matches are given a private chat room to get to know one another better. It's also LGBTQ friendly for you folks out there. It's a clean process and perfect for those who have busy lifestyles. No flicking through profiles all day long. Like most, it has its fair share of problems, but most of them are somewhat tolerable. You can also buy in-app currency to get perks like more visibility and other features.
And of course, you'll want to be using the right dating app to get the job done. Luckily, you're looking for a casual encounter at a time when new apps and features are constantly evolving to help you find exactly what it is you're looking for. Not sure which apps to start with? Here are some of the best dating apps for hooking up, as well as our advice on how to use them to your advantage to get lucky tonight.
The Match iteration of flirting is sending someone a “wink,” and you can search through the Match database to find “winkable” people. The service will also provide you with personalized matches on a daily basis, which take your interests into consideration. To really make the most of Match, however, you’re going to need a subscription, which can get a little pricey — the cheapest option currently available will run you $21 a month for six months. A premium subscription does allow you to see who’s recently looked at your profile and who has liked your pictures, though, and includes a host of other features.
Our dating app aids that goal by sending users between 3 and 7 tailored matches every day, matches that have been selected via our unique matchmaking algorithm. This algorithm bases its matches off our extensive personality test - an insightful questionnaire that uses the renowned Five Factor Model to take your tastes, lifestyle, and romantic goals into account when selecting a potential connection.
But this isn’t one of those stories where I tell you I downloaded one little app, swiped twice, and, to quote Tom Hank’s character Joe Fox, found “the one single person in the world who fills your heart with joy.” Whether it’s been because of a friend’s suggestion, trying to up my odds, or pure frustration with not getting messages back, I’ve downloaded and used a plenty of apps! So when the InStyle team was looking for volunteers to write a real-life, first-person review of dating apps, well… I guess we had a match. Read on for my findings:
Zoosk recommends showing your natural smile, citing a 2015 study that found people are drawn to a genuine show of pearly whites. That same study found people prefer a photo if the subject is tilting their head slightly, and if you're a woman seeking a man, make sure to incorporate the color red somewhere in your photo. If you really can't decide which photo to choose, don't be afraid to ask for a little outside help. A 2017 study found people tend to pick out less favorable photos of themselves when compared to letting others choose, so go ahead and ask your friends to help you!
Most of Bumble's functionality is free to use. To get started visit their website or install their app. You can then sign up with your phone number or Facebook account, upload additional photos, edit your profile, and set your search filter parameters. Then, it is onto matching. Swipe up and down to see more photos, and left or right to say yes or no. If a mutual match is made, a conversation may be initiated. Tap the chat box icon to view your match queue and current conversations. If you see someone who would be perfect for a friend, long press their photo or open up their profile and tap “Send to a Friend” to play matchmaker.

The Nuts and Bolts: I spent a whopping five minutes on the app—I think that says a lot. For starters, your five potential matches show up on a constellation-like sky chart (with you at the center—how groundbreaking). There’s no way of swiping left on your matches (or seeing new ones), and not one was even remotely attractive. So that was that for me. The app matches you based on astrological compatibility, which is amusing. It completely fails, however, to consider any other factor—looks, education, age, location—so the matches were a total flop to me. I think the concept is good, but the app is poorly executed, and the user pool seems low.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the variety of dating apps out there, but these 5 are a great place to start. Oh, and don’t worry about the data you use when you’re getting stuck in, because Go Binge on Three lets you use data infinitely without it coming out of your allowance. If you’re not with us, you can also get Unlimited data on our £20 a month SIM.
You can like people secretly, and they won’t find out unless they like you, too. If you’re comfortable being bolder, then you can tap the Charm button to let them know you’re interested. However, Charms cost coins which you’ll have to buy with real cash via in-app purchases. When you get a match — which Happn calls a Crush — you can start chatting with each other.
JSwipe is a Jewish dating app. You upload photos of yourself and scroll through other user profiles in the hopes of matching. This app is unique in that your matches expire in 18 days, so you've got to start chatting and schedule a date quickly. Everything is free to use but you can pay extra for "super swipes" to show a person you're extremely interested in them. This is a location-based app, so it's likely to work best in large cities.
You’ve got 24 hours, and you get the first word – no pressure, right? Bumble breaks down the unspoken rule of dating where we wait to be approached – ball’s officially in your court here. Try asking everyone the same three questions if you want to see how they all measure up, treating it like a job interview or go for a tried and tested ‘drinks Thursday?’ if you’re feeling bold.
Everyone has different reasons for being on dating apps, but many of them boil down to “I would like to have sex.” This sex could be with a longterm loving partner or a series of shorter-term partners, loving or not. Or both! It’s a big world. I’d love to meet someone I genuinely adore and want to be with; in the meantime, sex really takes the edge off. Cast off your prudery and join me on Feeld, fellow daters.

To ensure that everyone on EliteSingles is here for the right reasons, we manually check every profile before adding them to our site - no matter where in the world they're from. We take member security very seriously and have an on hand customer service team, dedicated to answering any queries you may have. We use SSL Encryption, Fraud Detection and Manual Profile Verification to ensure that we provide a premium service for our users. So while we take care of your profile safety you can focus on the fun stuff - like your upcoming dates!


Even after testing seven dating apps for PCMag, Karl Klockars remains happily married to his wonderfully understanding and awesome wife, Nora, and lives in Chicago. He is the author of Beer Lovers Chicago, runs the guysdrinkingbeer.com site, writes for outlets including AskMen, Chicago Magazine, and Thrillist, and recently entered the world of voic... See Full Bio

What's this app's deal? God. Where do we begin? Raya is an exclusive dating app that requires a membership and also costs $7.99 a month. You cannot just JOIN Raya, you must know someone already using the app and be invited. This is already annoying, but I also saw it as a potentially good thing because maybe having to work so hard to get on this damn app meant that people would take it more seriously. (I was wrong. Moving on.) The thing that sets this app apart from others is the reputation it has for celebrities using it (kind of true, in my experience) and the fact that screenshots are strictly forbidden. If you screenshot, you will get a warning and if you screenshot again, you will get kicked off.
On Feeld, I have this identity that is very attractive beyond those other things, and it’s a powerful feeling. This may not be the response in regard to every kink, but receiving lots of messages from people who are excited to meet me feels great. It’s such a refreshing difference from the desultory “heys” of Bumble. That sensation is something I’ve taken out into the real world, and have found myself feeling generally more attractive and confident.

The Nuts and Bolts: It’s easy to use and has a simple interface, but you do have to pay to go back to a previous swipe, which is lame. This app is the pioneer of swiping, which in its own right gives it a five out of five. That being said, Tinder is overrated: There are the ads, the inability to swipe backward, and almost too many people on it now. Everyone uses it now, so the pool of potential partners isn’t the best, and the user experience is now a pay-to-play kind of experience.
If you like the ease of Tinder but are searching exclusively for hookups and only want to match with people of the same mindset, CasualX bills itself as "Tinder minus marriage-minded daters." The app's functionalities are pretty much identical to Tinder, with the main (and, maybe only difference) being that no one here is trying to find anything serious. Using an app where everyone's on the same page undoubtedly increases your success rate for finding a warm, willing body to spend the night with, which makes CasualX an ideal app for hookups.
×