Valentine's Day has come and gone, but the search for the perfect mate goes on. And your smartphone may be able to help. Even a few years ago, Internet dating meant tethering yourself to your computer, but these days, mobile devices and location-sensing apps have turned the world into your playground for dates, hookups and long-term relationships, with even Facebook testing out a dating service of its own for its massive social network. Check out our top dating, hook-up and meet-up apps that will help you find the Right One... or the Right Now. (Image Credit: Bbenard/Shutterstock)
The experts say: For those who are at a loss as how to sell themselves in 500 words or less, this site offers the opportunity to be described by your friend. It works on the premise your friend can sell you better than you can but they can also embarrass you too. MSF has a more chatty style in the profile and gives you a greater insight into your potential date’s world.
Before you jump in, make sure you’re not fooled (or overwhelmed) by the endless options. As with any website that requires your personal information — like your credit card, location and more — it’s important to read through the fine print of any website you browse. You don't want to invest your energy, confidence and hard-earned dough into something that isn't worth it. Not sure where to start or how to proceed? Luckily, we’ve completed the deep dive for you and have narrowed down the top sites to focus your energy and time. Though these are safe choices, there are some untrustworthy sites that make promises they can’t keep — from fake members to guaranteeing success.

This dating app started in 2007 as a Facebook application. Now, this is considered as one of the most prominent online dating sites, as proven by the positive feedbacks from majority of its users. One of its best features is the Zoosk Scientific Matchmaking Service, making it easy to be connected to other members. The app can also be used as a virtual currency, which can be used for buying electronic gifts. It also has a newsfeed that is connected to Facebook.
From your ol' reliable Tinder app to more recent home screen additions like the Bumble app or Plenty of Fish, the world of online dating has something for everyone. These are more than just the best hookup apps (though if that's your thing, more power to you); more and more people are forging long-term relationships with the help of dating apps, and there's no shame in that game. 
Bumble was founded by Whitney Wolfe, a woman whose goal was to make dating (and now, even networking and friendship) more female-friendly. How that manifests on the app, for the uninitiated, is a Sadie Hawkins-esque interface that requires women to message their male matches first. Then men have 24 hours to respond or else the match is erased. (For women messaging other women and women-identified folks, either party can respond first.) Although this ostensibly puts the power into women’s hands, it’s also the biggest complaint I heard about Bumble while researching this piece, calling it “annoying” and “overwhelming” (and the reason a few dating-haters I spoke to defected to Tinder). But lots of respect to any app that's actually trying to make women feel safer online, and Bumble has made that its priority.
The stigma attached to online dating is only there because, in most people's minds, online dating either means desperately looking for a spouse or desperately looking for sex. While some sites are definitely like that, Match is the place where you can find a serious, long-term relationship without the looming pressure of marriage. (Seriously, check out success stories here.)

It’s not perfect. The quiz show format won’t appeal to everyone, and the slow burn and winner-takes-all aspect mean it’s going to be a lot harder to get a date than in other apps. Also, featured dater spots are currently only open to straight women, so there’s not much here for lesbians or gay men yet, though there are plans to expand to male bachelors and LGBTQ+ episodes. You also need to email the company to apply to be a featured dater, which means it’s not exactly a pick-up-and-go app if you’re wanting to be the featured dater. However, if you’re bored of regular dating apps, or if you’re simply attracted to the fun elements and the prospect of finding love is a bonus, then give Quiz Date Live a go.
Christian Mingle is a religious dating app aimed at relationship-ready single Christians who are seeking a match who shares their values. Like the Christian Mingle site, the dating app prioritizes God-centered relationships, and lets singles filter by factors such as denomination. Irreligious singles may want to turn elsewhere to find a meaningful match, but for those whose spirituality is important to them, Christian Mingle is an excellent choice.

The format is simple. Each featured dater takes part in a question-and-answer livestream on the first night, where they introduce themselves and take questions from the viewing contestants. The next night sees the games begin, and the contestants are asked a series of multiple choice questions about the night before. Players who get all the questions right go on to the next round, where they’re asked a number of questions by the featured dater — who then narrows the field down to three contestants, based on their answers. Those final three choices then get the chance to impress their prospective date via live video by doing whatever it is they do best — whether that’s by busting some killer dance moves, telling jokes, or some other talent. The pair will then go on a date paid for by Quiz Date Live, which can range from hit Broadway shows, Michelin-star dining experiences, helicopter rides over Manhattan, or other luxurious dates.

Ultimately, narrowing down all of the dating sites out there comes down to which ones receive the best user and company reviews. Listening to singles about their experiences and testing out the numerous options ourselves are the two biggest components that make up our reviews. And through all of our research, we’ve determined that Match truly is the top choice for any type of dater, while Zoosk is great for dating on the go.
Bumble has set unprecedented standards for respectful behavior to ensure all users feel safe, including banning shirtless bathroom mirror selfies (seemingly a staple of all dating apps) and implementing photo verification to ensure users are who they claim to be. Bumble also attacked the problem of ghosting head-on by implementing time limits on communication.
An online dating site allows you to upload a profile, often for free initially, and search and browse other member's profiles seeking someone of interest. On most sites you can filter searches based on multiple criteria, for example height, education and if someone has children or not, to find someone who has the characteristics that most appeal to you. 
What it'll cost you:  A basic account is always free. But there are some paid extras you can enjoy if you want a more premium experience. If you pay for the A-List membership, you can cut out the ads, you get more search options like body type and attractiveness, you can see everyone who likes you, and you can see who reads your messages, among other useful things. 
‘Asking your date questions not only shows that you’re interested in what they have to say but it also allows you to get to know them, which is what a first date is all about! Don’t stick to small talk. More intimate questions about your date’s hopes, dreams and passions will help you forge a closer connection – and it’s a lot more interesting than talking about the weather.’

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.
In addition to reading a dating app’s About page and things like that, don’t forget to also look for reviews from experts, like us, as well as consumers, like yourself, and companies like TrustPilot and Glassdoor. All you have to do is Google the app’s name with the word review after it (e.g., Elite Singles review). Another tip is to go to Google News and search for the app to see what kind of news is surrounding it. Get a feel for what other people are saying out there, and even ask your friends, family members, and coworkers if they’ve used a dating app that you’re thinking about.
There's a difference between wanting a long-term, serious, monogamous relationship and wanting to get married ASAP. For those who aren't looking for a spouse just yet and thus can't see themselves signing up for eharmony but who are also so over Tinder, Match is a good compromise. Match boasts the perfect levels of serious and fun, offering a spot for people to express exactly what they're looking for so that there's no confusion down the road. 
The service also offers more specific preference options, meaning you can narrow your choices to certain religious beliefs or ethnicities if those things are important to you. You can load up to nine photos and have a much more prolific profile, too. And if you’ve entered any icebreakers into your profile, the app will send one of them to a bagel you’ve connected with as the first message for greater convenience. The fact that the chat room expires after a week puts some pressure on you to exchange phone numbers or meet up in real life or to just quietly fade away without any fuss. The interface is also relatively user-friendly, with large photos and clean text.
Plenty of Fish isn't known for its dated interface. If you can get past that, the underpinnings are solid: There is an in-depth personality test helps provide better matches, or you can use a detailed search function to show potential dates based on anything from basics (age, ethnicity, relationship type) to very specific criteria (personality type, car ownership, level of self-confidence and ambition). As with OkCupid, it's free to communicate with others, but there's a premium membership that adds additional features (Est. $12.75 per month for four months). Those include getting your profile highlighted in searches, skipping ads, and seeing whether your emails were read.
There's a difference between wanting a long-term, serious, monogamous relationship and wanting to get married ASAP. For those who aren't looking for a spouse just yet and thus can't see themselves signing up for eharmony but who are also so over Tinder, Match is a good compromise. Match boasts the perfect levels of serious and fun, offering a spot for people to express exactly what they're looking for so that there's no confusion down the road. 

Did I like using it? YES. I love Hinge, honestly. It's my favorite dating app that I've used thus far. And I've had the most successful connections/dates from it, too. I think the fact that people can answer questions, but not get too in depth, makes it the ideal dating app for someone who is open to whatever comes their way. I also feel like, in general, the people on Hinge are a little more serious and less likely to send you dick pics. This isn't researched, that has been my experience, though!
When you search our free profiles from all over the world, you’ll understand that you can reach many inter-racial members. Men are often looking for girls from Russia, Latin America, the Dominican Republic, or for beautiful Chinese or Portuguese women. These women are usually happy to travel around the world to meet their match and find true love face-to-face.
International online service which strives on to be a leader in the international dating market. We welcome you to our family and hope you enjoy our excellent customer service and cutting edge technology. By offering the most innovative tools in the industry, including Live Video Chat, Introduction Videos, and with more features to come, our goal is to become the most extensive and easy to use international dating site in the world.
When I first moved to the city, this app only connected you with friends of friends on Facebook. I don’t have a ton of friends on FB and went to a rather small college, so this truly limited my matches. When I re-downloaded it about two years later, however, I found a completely different app. While it still uses Facebook, it doesn’t limit your matches. Now marketed as "The Relationship App," you’re given a specific about of my likes per day. But it’s not just liking photos. You have to fill out a full profile, answering questions that can help stir up conversation like "What did you want to be when you grow up?" or "What are you currently reading?" You can like and comment on someone’s answer, and the same goes for pics. If you connect, you can keep on chatting. I don’t have anything bad to say about this app and have been suggesting it to all my friends, too.
Who it's for: People who don't know what they want. Zoosk's algorithm takes your preferences into its own hands and suggests matches based on how you swipe — even if you have no idea why you liked or didn't like that person. Zoosk offers ease, practicality, and a clean layout, and is a good bet if you haven't had any luck on the Tinders or eharmonies of the world.
Matching: Here's how it works: You pick the gender or genders you're interested in, the age range you're looking for, and how close in distance you'd like a potential match to be. Tinder then uses the GPS on your mobile phone to search for nearby Tinder users. Once it locates them, it shows you their first name, age and a profile picture. You swipe right if you'd like to be matched with them, left if you're not interested. If both parties swipe right, you're a match, meaning you can start interacting with them.
Once you've installed these apps and signed up for the services, get ready for a barrage of notifications and email. Some, like daily match suggestions, are helpful, while others, like alerts that tell you every new "like" you get, can just be annoying. The good thing is you can easily tweak these alerts by drilling down into the settings menus in each of the apps.

Pure offers a short window for chatting, deleting conversations and photos exchanged between users an hour after they've been sent. That means you spend more time getting busy and less time exchanging niceties. It is overtly branded as a hookup app, so you know the intentions of whoever you're chatting with without having to play the guessing game. Not only does this app protect your anonymity by making messages and images self-destruct, but it's also free to download. Talk about a win-win.


OkCupid is another one of the biggest names in the dating biz. After creating a username, you’ll start filling out a very long profile, to which you can link to your Instagram account. You can answer questions, giving both your answer and what you’d like your potential match’s answer to be — this creates a percentile score for users that reflects compatibility. You can also choose to make your answers public and note how important they are to you.
Casual Kiss is one of the older online dating services. Starting out as a free dating service, it now charges $5.00 for participation. For this price, however, you have access to a birthday list, a Confessions page, where your fellow members post their most intimate secrets. This can be very useful information when it comes to getting to know your fellow online participants. This will enable you to decide what skeletons in their closets constitutes a dealbreaker for you.
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.
Unlike traditional dating sites, dating apps give their users the freedom to search for a match from absolutely anywhere. From no-strings-attached encounters to platonic concert buddies and lunch dates, apps are becoming one of the easiest and most commonly used methods of meeting likeminded people. And despite their reputation of being hook-up focused, there’s a rapidly growing world of niche dating apps out there that caters to all types of relationship-seekers. What’s more, apps allow users the opportunity to share their location, so not only can they search for a match on the go, they can also meet up with nearby matches almost instantaneously. But just because they’re set up to deliver on-the-move instant gratification, doesn’t mean dating apps aren’t a valid option for singles looking to get serious with someone. From Coffee Meets Bagel to Taste Buds, the options and niche categories in the App Store are boundless and very worth exploring.
Age-based niches: These sites are for people of a specific age. Baby boomers are overwhelmingly turning to the web to find a mate. Sites like Match.com and POF.com offer members a chance to search specifically for the age group that interests you, but SeniorPeopleMeet.com and OurTime.com are the two largest sites designed specifically for the baby boomer market.
A niche app with a wide user base (over 13 million and counting), BeNaughty has both a wide audience and the right audience for finding a partner who's down for an easy night of fun. Not to mention, you can maximize your chances of finding a match who's free thanks to the app's mass messaging system, which allows you to send out the same message to multiple members at once every 12 hours. The app functions with the same swipe left/right capabilities as a standard dating app, but also allows users to find potential matches via forums and group chats rather than swiping through matches one by one, further increasing your odds of finding what you're looking for.
Launched by clinical psychologist Dr. Neil Clark Warren, eHarmony.com is a go-to if you want a serious, long-term relationship — which explains how 4% of U.S. marriages have taken place thanks to the site, according to Harris Interactive. eHarmony is also known for their unique matching system that compares 29 dimensions of compatibility to pair their members.
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The stigma attached to online dating is only there because, in most people's minds, online dating either means desperately looking for a spouse or desperately looking for sex. While some sites are definitely like that, Match is the place where you can find a serious, long-term relationship without the looming pressure of marriage. (Seriously, check out success stories here.)

Though Bumble began as a dating app in 2014, it has evolved to encompass relationships of all kinds. The company is a destination where singles meet their significant others – as well as their best friends and their most important business partners. Bumble launched Bumble BFF in 2016 to connect people with new friends around their city, and soon followed with the launch of Bumble Bizz for business networking. Within the one app you can switch between the 3 modes and any mode can be disabled if you do not want to use it. For the purpose of this review we will just be looking at Bumbles first focus, Dating.


If you're just not sure you want to commit to a monthly subscription, you may want to try a free dating site. These sites don't make you pay to communicate with other members, though some may offer premium features that you do need to pay for. Features vary widely, but experts warn you should be more on your guard for scammers on free sites. You may also find fewer people looking for something serious on these sites.
If you're in the market for a hookup that satisfies a particular fetish, look no further than the FetL app, a dating app that connects local singles with shared fetish interests. This app packs all of the GPS features of Grindr (read: you can find out if there's anyone who's into the same fetish as you at the bar you're at), with the ease of Tinder's swipe left/right functionality to make finding a fetish hookup easier than it's ever been before. "When I'd meet people in clubs, they almost always told me that they found it difficult to meet people who shared their fetishes," Iris Li, one of the co-founders of FetL explains. She created FetL to help fill the gap, and users have been getting their needs met ever since.

A niche app with a wide user base (over 13 million and counting), BeNaughty has both a wide audience and the right audience for finding a partner who's down for an easy night of fun. Not to mention, you can maximize your chances of finding a match who's free thanks to the app's mass messaging system, which allows you to send out the same message to multiple members at once every 12 hours. The app functions with the same swipe left/right capabilities as a standard dating app, but also allows users to find potential matches via forums and group chats rather than swiping through matches one by one, further increasing your odds of finding what you're looking for.
One of the better-known gay and lesbian dating apps, HER is a top option for queer women (and womxn) seeking a Tinder-style dating app that's exclusively focused on the LGBTQI+ experience. In its previous incarnation, it was known as Dattch; as HER the app's aim is to be a more-inclusive queer dating hub. Yet, with initial matching based on liking photos from a grid of nearby users, those seeking a serious relationship will have to be ok with asking questions to see if there's a personality connection.8
If you want to do anything besides just look with Match, you'll want to upgrade to a paid subscription. Like almost every other dating site, Match follows the whole "the longer you stay, the cheaper it is" policy: Get three months for $30.65/month, six months for $26.65/month, and a year for $21.99/month. Subscriptions may seem pricey, but when you consider that places like eharmony or EliteSingles ask you to pay $50 or $60 each month, Match's prices suddenly don't look so bad. Check back for deals around the holidays (AKA cuffing season) and in January and February, which are the most popular months for dating site sign-ups.
I have a friend who met her serious boyfriend on this app, and I had only ever heard good things about it. When four people say something along the lines of, "Oh, my best friend’s sister met her guy on that app," sadly, you get excited. I found this way less daunting than the endless swiping that Bumble and Tinder present. Each day, a guy is given 21 "bagels" to like or pass. Women then receive a selection of bagels based on who’s already shown interest or "liked" their profile. I think I had about seven guys to choose or pass each day. If you don’t start a convo within about a week, the connection expires and you get reminders urging you to chat. I liked that I didn’t have FOMO about not swiping because my selections were already given to me. It also has a built-in monetary system called "beans," so you can buy coffee beans to like more bagels if you so choose. I went on a few really nice dates, but no sparks. While I don't use it anymore, overall I give it a B+ and would totally suggest it to friends.

Why it's awesome: It's the ideal place to come when you're ready to settle down but still want to feel ~hip~ and have fun. First things first: OkCupid's advertising is astounding. Its newest ads redefine "DTF" in colorful graphics that depict same sex couples as well as hetero couples, and it truly makes online dating seem like way less of a cliche. Along with the fact that it has gained a trusted rep by being one of the first dating sites ever (2004 to be exact), OkCupid has won the hearts of millennial and mature singles alike. But don't let their love of raunchy internet slang make you put them in the "hookup" category —OkCupid is still a serious space, and most users are genuinely putting effort into finding lasting connections.


AnastasiaDate is a free dating app that focuses on introducing its users to beautiful women from Ukraine, Russia, and Eastern Europe. If you have family ties to those regions, or you have always been fascinated by that region of the world, this free dating app will definitely appeal to you. The interface is great, and there appear to be many beautiful women with profiles on this app. If you want to say “Privet” to a beautiful lady from Russian or Eastern Europe, this is the dating app for you.
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