Sex & Relationships

Does Being Single Still Suck? Briony Tests New Dating Apps

In 2015, FLARE’s resident scrappy single gal bared her love-life secrets on the Internet, endured insane Tinder come-ons—and went on approximately a million dates. Read on for more of her mating adventures, including test-driving the four hottest new dating apps

happn dating appsHappn
How it works:
Any time you pass by a fellow user IRL, their profile appears on your app home screen. If you mutually heart each other, a chat window opens. The GPS-powered app also tells you where you passed someone, how many times you’ve passed them, and when it happened last. See someone you like who hasn’t liked you back yet? Girls get unlimited charms we can send to boys to woo them into matching with us.

Cutie ratio: Most users are v. cute, and there’s also a lot of racial diversity on the site.

Pros: It’s a total trip seeing which unknown dudes you’ve apparently crossed paths with five times. It’s probably the most addictive app of the bunch.

Cons: I matched with a lot of guys who never chatted with me. Like, why bother? It’s also easy to panic that you’ll miss a prize in the jillion new users you encounter every day.

coffee meet bagel dating appsCoffee Meets Bagel
How it works: The app sends you one potential person per day (your bagel). If you like each other, a chat window opens for seven days. You can purchase beans to buy hotter or more bagels, or to see who your mutual friends are. (You also earn beans by using your account on the reg.) Read our interview with the app’s three founding sisters.

Cutie ratio: Poor. Most bagels are not that foxy. #realtalk

Pros: I dug the chillness of just getting one man-option a day instead of spending every commute swiping myself into carpal-tunnel burn.

Cons: Sorry if this sounds harsh, but my friends and I found our bagels unbangable on the whole. The app may need time to pick up males in Canada—or it possibly just gives you garbage bagels until you pony up some beans for a babe.

bumble dating appsBumble
How it works:
Started by a female Tinder co-founder, Bumble aims to be women-friendly. Like Tinder, you swipe right, but once you match with someone, the lady must talk to the guy first. If you don’t start a chat within 24 hours, you’re unmatched. (But JK, really, since they just get thrown back into your pool of potential choices.)

Cutie ratio: Almost everyone on Bumble is ridiculously hot.

Pros: Forcing the woman to make the initial move is refreshingly feminist; gone is the “that’s desperate” stigma of messaging first, and waiting around for the guy to approach you.

Cons: Less progressive were the dudes who merely waited for me to open the chat so they could then immediately launch into their usual gross lines. The 24-hour ticking clock set-up is also stressful; I went on a matching spree one Friday afternoon, only to wake up hungover on Saturday to my phone angrily buzzing over and over, “YOUR BUMBLE MATCH IS ABOUT TO EXPIRE TALK TO THEM IMMEDIATELY OR YOU WILL DIE ALONE.”

hinge dating appsHinge
How it works:
Hinge connects you with friends of friends through your Facebook network; more extensive personal info is listed too, like your job. If you match with someone, you’re given their full name and a 24-hour chat window opens. If either of you starts talking to the other, the window remains open for an additional two weeks.

Cutie ratio: Everyone is quite attractive. The dudes skew more mainstream bro than bohemian hipster, FYI.

Pros: Having someone in common should guarantee that guys show a little more decorum than usual…

Cons: …and it mostly does. There were only two pervs and one meanie in the lot, and their comments were less offensive than usual, probably because I could see their last name and thus tweet a screenshot of any DTF queries to their employer or mom.

being single sucks

FLARE senior editor, culture, Briony Smith (Photo: Jaclyn Locke)

P.S. An update: Why “Being Single Sucks” was one of FLARE’s most popular stories of the year
Posting my essay from our June/July 2015 issue—about the annoyances and agonies of being a Perpetually Single Bitch—on FLARE.com was goddamn terrifying (and I don’t scare easy). But then something amazing happened: hundreds and hundreds of tweets and Facebook  messages and emails and comments began pinging in from women all over the world, all chorusing, “Me, too!” Ladies told me they cried when reading it, flooded with relief that they weren’t the only ones. Eight months later, chicks are still retweeting and reaching out, from the stranger Facebooking me from Ireland to the Aussie gal commenting on FLARE.com. (Even some dudes tweeted about how it rang true for them, too; I ended up going on a date with one.) The story became our most-read online feature of the year.

Sure, there were some haters and men’s rights activists who interpreted my policy of “turning down second dates with so-so dudes” as me routinely ghosting great guys who didn’t meet my insanely  high standards. Just to clarify, y’all, by “so-so dudes,” I meant anyone missing my must- haves: a kind heart, some smarts and a sense of humour. That’s it. They can be short, bald, rotund, nerdy or any of the other things society likes to be a right judgy bitch about, but those three traits I cannot sacrifice. And so I keep datin’ along, looking for my match. This year’s slid by a little easier though, because I know, now more than ever, that I’m in good company.

Related:
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