The Dater's Guide to Profile Photos


Photos are a very important aspect of your dating profile. In fact, someone with photos is 15 times more likely to get attention than someone without! Unfortunately many singles unwittingly sabotage themselves by making poor choices in the photos they use for their dating profile. Read the following quick tips put together by the SDA Team to make sure you're not selling yourself short!

The Do's and Don'ts of...



  •  Take pictures outside during "Golden Hour," that time right before sunset when the sun casts a healthy-looking warm glow on your skin
  •  Take pictures on cloudy days because the clouds diffuse the sun's harshness and casts a soft, even brightness on your skin
  • Learn to use basic photo-editing apps on your phone (ex. VSCO cam) so you can tweak contrast and colors


  • Take pictures with harsh lighting where you see unflattering shadows on your face
  • Take pictures with so much light on your face that your nose is washed out
  • Take Mac Photobooth pictures in the dark that make you look like a gray ghoul



  •  Figure out what are the most flattering angles for your face
  •  Switch between a couple of flattering angles, poses, and smiles (smiling with lips vs. smiling with teeth)
  •  Have a good number of photos with you head-on, looking straight at the camera - it shows confidence, and people feel they can see how you really look


  • Have the same exact angle, pose, and facial expression in every photo
  • Take "selfies" from below pointing upwards - it is an unflattering angle for almost any face
  • Take "selfies" from an extremely high angle pointing downwards at your face - it may show off your cleavage and make your eyes appear bigger, but it looks tacky and juvenile



  • Showcase several different types of looks/outfits for a variety of occasions (ex. dinner party dress, chic coffee shop look, breezy beachwear, business casual)
  • The backdrop for your photo can add or detract points, so take pictures with a pretty background (ex. city lights, cute cafe, nice restaurant, nature etc.)
  • Pick photos that you look your best in - these are for a dating profile, so the purpose is to present yourself as attractive


  • Have photos of yourself scantily clad - it might (or might not) work for Facebook and Instagram, but again these photos are for a dating profile, so you don't want to attract creepy people
  • Take "bathroom selfies" - there is a very high chance this will come out looking very low-class
  • Wear sunglasses - people want to see your face
  • Wear so much makeup that it's hard to tell what you actually look like


  • Switch to a good phone or camera so that you're not taking grainy, low-quality photos
  • Don't over-filter photos or add cheesy decorations/words on them (often a problem when people first learn to edit photos and get too excited)
  • Don't try to be funny with your photos (ex. holding a sign that says "I'm an idiot") because people might not "get" your humor online
  • Get in the habit of taking photos in general, so that you have a lot to choose from
  • Ask your friends what they think of your choice of photos; sometimes we all need a healthy dose of brutal honesty to see the light
  • Ask your friends to take pictures for you! These tend to turn out better than "selfies" 


A client's profile picture before her consultation with the SDA team...

...and after her consultation and photoshoot!