Hinge review: What makes this dating app any different from the likes of Tinder, Coffee Meets Bagel or Bumble?
The app to delete
Let me just start off by saying: I haven't been on an actual date in almost half a year.
In fact, I haven't even come remotely close to swiping on anyone at all; from Tinder and Coffee Meets Bagel (CMB) to Bumble, I had deleted all supposed cupid indicators from my phone and decided that the online dating scene just wasn't for me. Some called me fussy (they weren't entirely wrong), whilst others attributed it to a bout of dating app fatigue. But after getting on and off the apps for a good three years now, I didn't really see a point curating my profile over and over again as if I were a piece of meat readying myself to be sold off at the butcher's. And day by day, I found it increasingly meaningless to find someone I could potentially connect with from just their photos alone, or worse still, their one-liner comments that sat somewhere along the lines of 'I like dogs and travelling'. Yeesh.
But enter Hinge: the dating app designed to be deleted (because you'll find a match and wouldn't need it anymore!). Or at least, that is the mantra they stand by. I wouldn't put it past them, especially after using the app for about a week now. What I mean is — I don't hate it.
Their mission is simple; they want you to meet other people who want to get off dating apps just as much as you do. And so they've created a space that makes it as easy as it can be to show off a more organic side of you: the type of person you are, the things you prioritise in life, and all the little weird knacks you've got up your sleeve. And somehow all this sort of successfully radiates through the creation of your profile.
Creating Your Profile
Right from the get go, the basics are covered: they'll ask you about your gender (pretty inclusive on this front I might add), age, height, and sexual preference. Whilst they've pretty much covered all grounds on the gender front, they do seem to only have three options for whom we'd want to see on our feeds — man, woman or everyone — and so there's possibly some room for improvement here.
Just like Bumble, they'll ask for your education level, religion, job title, political leanings, family plans, and your other vices (wherever applicable): all to help create a fuller picture for the person on the other end. Something my friend did point out to me was that unlike Bumble, there's no indicator for what 'I'm looking for' e.g would I be "DTF" or not. But if anything, I'll attribute that to Hinge being a platform for people who are a little more serious about getting into relationships.
Next, your 'profile', aka what people actually see. Over here, it does get a little confusing because unless you've uploaded a total of six photos or videos from your camera reel, Instagram or Facebook, plus 3 'prompts', your profile won't be considered 100% complete. And without a complete profile, you won't be allowed to toggle certain things like your preferences, i.e. if you're looking for a fellow Christian partner. You've been warned!
The 'prompts' are great because they're a little more casual and upfront; you can expect seeing things like "I'm weirdly attracted to..." or 'You should *not* go out with me if...". Essentially, it sort of gives you that option to be more real with people, and show off a side of you that might have been harder to put across in some of the other apps.
The Actual 'Swiping' aka Why Hinge Works
Honestly, I wouldn't call it 'swiping' at all. Quite simply, Hinge is like the Instagram of dating apps. What do I mean? So remember that you've added 6 photos and 3 prompts to your profile — just like everyone else on this app. What Hinge doesn't do is that it doesn't make you swipe left or right on just a person's profile. On each photo and prompt you're seeing, there's a little heart and chat function that allows you to react to people's profiles. You can send a like to what they said, comment on their photo, or answer the questions they're posing you with. Just like how you'd interact with a friend's Instagram post or story.
You also only get eight likes (at least on the free version) a day, which helps eradicate the swiping fatigue: since you probably want to save those likes for people you think might be worth a shot for you.
P.S. I did also ask a guy friend to check out the app along with me and apparently there's no difference between the interfaces for different genders — which is great. Especially for CMB and Bumble, there's a lot of added pressure on either end to start a conversation first, or send the first like. Real life connection doesn't quite work like that now, does it?
And it's as easy as that. No, it's not some miracle app that suddenly has a gazillion potential others that are your type, but it does help you filter out the people you can probably talk to and vibe with, possibly even helping you realise what or who you're personally more attracted to. What I'd say about Hinge is that it makes the best use (thus far) of the virtual dating space that we've pretty much confined most of our romantic lives to.
Granted, at the end of the day, it does take some effort to go through people's lengthy profiles, watch their randomly included TikTok videos, read about their lil quirks, and respond intelligently...but hey, you wouldn't be actually getting to know someone if it didn't take up a good amount of your time, right? If anything, you can expect a decent amount of cheeky banter and cringe-worthy pick-up lines to have a good laugh at. Oh, and yes, I am going on a date with someone I met on Hinge — but I reckon we don't need to go too much into that.