When Dating Online, It Helps If Some People Find You Ugly

Anyone who has tried online dating knows the stress of picking out a profile picture. What combination of eye contact, cleavage and lighting will inspire new suitors? 

In the latest installment of OkCupid’s dating research, The Mathematics of Beauty, the site reveals a few fascinating trends they observed about dating success.

Turns out raw beauty isn’t the best metric. In fact, the more men disagree about a woman’s looks, the more likely she is to be contacted for dates. The research finds that women who are considered ugly by some users have a better chance of attracting dates than women who are considered cute by nearly everyone. 

What’s going on here? Could be a little gamesmanship at work.

If men see a profile of a user and everyone else thinks she’s hot, they assume chances are pretty slim she’ll pick them for a suitor.

But if guys see a girl who they think is cute, but who seems undervalued by others, they sense an opportunity. 

It could also be evidence that some men are strongly attracted to particular traits that the general population doesn’t find attractive.

OkCupid’s advice for the ladies? Take your flaws and play them up. The negative reaction you get from some users will only work to your advantage. 

bpopper at observer dot com – @benpopper

When Dating Online, It Helps If Some People Find You Ugly