Even if they don’t read your whole profile, they’ll at least know you don’t want children or are allergic to cats (my boyfriend and I never would have dated if I’d owned a cat instead of a dog because he’s severely allergic to cats). Read the profiles of your potential mates carefully: Just as you took a lot of time and energy to write a good profile for yourself, so did a lot of other people.

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It’s just like posting an inaccurate photo of yourself; sooner or later people are going to realize that’s not the real you, throwing your chances of a long-term relationship out the window. Don’t write a novel: Just as you don’t want to have too sparse of a profile, you also don’t want your profile to be a novel.

Respect people’s time by not writing any more than you’d be willing to read yourself.

Moderation is the key here; provide enough information to give people a clear snapshot of who you are, but don’t bore them to death War-and-Peace-style. Place critical information at the top of your profile: If you’re looking for something very specific, such as deal-breakers you absolutely want people to know about, place that information at the very top of your profile.

I was excited to see some great conversation happening in the comments of my piece “The Top Three Mistakes Men Make in Online Dating.” Both men and women shared their experiences with online dating and debated over the mistakes and fixes I offered in the piece. How do you reconcile a trillion different preferences in order to offer men advice on what to do to be successful with online dating? All I can do is set some parameters and offer my advice based on my own experiences and hope that it helps at least a few guys out there.

Throughout it all, what became most apparent during the discussion is that men didn’t want a “don’t” list. What they really want is some advice on what I hesitated to even write this piece because what people like is far more subjective than what people don’t like. To that end, this is my list “to do’s” for people (yes, people, not just men) who are trying to find a long-term partner using an online dating site: 1.

To oversimplify what I mean, let’s take coffee for example. Only use current photos in your profile: One of the most common complaints I hear from men is that women frequently misrepresent themselves in their photos by using old photos (sometimes decades old) or by cropping them in too tightly so you don’t realize they are of a certain body type.

Most people can agree they don’t like scalding hot coffee, but it’s tough to get people to agree on how they do like their coffee. Obviously men do this as well; I’ve just heard this complaint more frequently from men than from women.

I used to think this was shallow advice, but it all comes down to honesty.

One of the men I met through an online dating site thanked me for looking exactly like my photos because one woman he went on a date with ended up gaining a significant amount of weight since the photos she posted were taken.