Have you ever wondered why profile images are so important? Here are just a handful of the judgments we’re all prone to making about people when we first view their profile image – and what others could be thinking about you right now.
The life and soul of the party
Look out for profile pictures that feature more than one person, images of rosy-cheeked partygoers clutching colourful cocktails, and photos taken in pubs, bars, and nightclubs; the chances are this person is a social butterfly, happiest when he or she is living it up with friends. Keen to make friends and family members laugh this person will drag you along for the ride, whether you’re similarly extroverted or not.
An introvert’s profile picture may be slightly out of focus, perfected with a filter, or taken at such an angle that it’s difficult to make out all of his or her features. He or she wants to get to know you, but is happier keeping aspects of their personality, and appearance, from you until things get a little more serious; be patient, and remember to listen during conversations.
The free spirit
Have you ever wondered why some people choose to represent their dating profile with a picture of an animal, or a beautiful, foreign landscape? These online daters are free spirits; they don’t care what anyone thinks of them, and have far more time for their animals than they do most people. The free spirit loves traveling, and is best engaged with talk of sunny climes, or adventures.
The young professional
See that professional headshot that wouldn’t look out of place on LinkedIn? The person behind that profile picture is a young professional, and is probably most comfortable when sat at a desk with the world at his or her fingertips. The young professional views online dating as an opportunity to network, rather than finding love, and will probably enjoy being in charge of where you go for your first date.
The control freak
There are very few candid photographs that actually reflect anyone in a good light; candid photos are usually only good for double chins, dodgy facial expressions, and seemingly detached limbs. If your latest match has a beautiful candid photograph as their profile picture, it may be safe to make the assumption that this person knows what they like, what they want, and how to get it. They may even be something of a control freak. What would you like to bet that their photo was the best of 40 staged pictures that day?
The King, or Queen, of confidence
Topless photos, or those staged on the beach, tend to belong to those with heaps of confidence; this man or woman knows how to flaunt their favourite body parts, and courts the attention that their profile picture will garner. The King, or Queen of confidence won’t be shy about making the first move, but they’ll be disappointed if they need to hunt your compliments.
Of course, you may soon find that your preconceptions were completely wrong once you get to know a person; perhaps you were expecting a quiet, retiring type and instead found a party animal. However vehemently we deny it, we’re all prone to judging others on something as simple, and shallow, as a profile picture. So, what is yours saying about you? The next time you’re choosing images for your dating profile think very carefully about what each picture represents, and the preconceptions you’d rather didn’t cross peoples’ minds as they stumble upon your profile. You may just think twice before posting that topless selfie, or the picture of your cat…