4 Online Dating Photos That Get You Noticed

Now that the first step to dating often involves browsing an overwhelming photo gallery of singles, it's more important than ever to stand out with a flattering and approachable profile photo that says "Message me!" It's not just about finding your prettiest picture that also won't deceive potential suitors-the type of angles, facial expression, and scenery can actually determine the likelihood you'll get contacted. Online dating service OKCupid analyzed more than 7,000 photos from the site to determine if three indicators-facial attitude, how much skin is showing, and environment-bore any relationship to a person's popularity on the site, measured by the number of messages each profile received. Not only are some of their findings surprising, but there are clear guidelines for which photos are most likely to get you a date:

The Flirty Pose
You might think that a friendly smile says "I'm dating material!" more than, pursed or pouty lips do. But in reality, the photos that featured women "flirting" into the camera with a pouty-lipped, coy expression received more messages than women who simply smiled. However, there's one caveat: the site found that flirting away from the camera is the worst thing a woman can do in profile photos. You want to make love to the camera, not eyes at a mystery man outside of the frame.

How to Look Good in Photos

The "MySpace" Angle
Though self-photo shoots in which you hold the camera above your head and look up at the lens seem a little sophomoric to us, OK Cupid researchers found what they cleverly dub the "MySpace Angle" to be the single most effective profile photo for women in terms of the number of new contacts each month. Even when they removed from their analysis those angles that overtly gave a boob shot (to exclude the possibility that the MySpace Angle is only reflecting a preference for cleavage), the popularity of this shot held true. It seems that the key to ramping up your dating life is to recall the Internet practices of tweens.

9 Tips for a Great Date

The Revealing Photo
Profile photos that feature cleavage garnered 49 percent more contacts per month than the average profile. Shocking, right?! It's not surprising that men are likely to message women who flaunt skin in their photos-they are visual creatures, after all-but what is surprising is how this finding trended with age. The older the woman was (the data set only went to 32), the more likely a cleavage picture resulted in contact. The folks at OK Cupid hypothesize that the older the woman, "the more relatively successful she is showing off her body." And yet the older she is, the less likely she is to have a skin shot, even though it behooves her to do so. So women over 30, if you got it flaunt it!

Mobile Dating: Genius or Creepy?

The Action Shot
While the come-hither expression, coquettish angle, and exhibitionist nature of the preceding photos garner the most contacts per month, they don't necessarily result in more love connections. (We suspect that the intentions of the people attracted by overtly sexual photos come into question.) The photos that were most likely to elicit conversation (i.e. messages back and forth) featured the subject doing something interesting, such as playing an instrument or traveling. Even if the woman's face was not totally visible, action shots had the highest chance (40 percent) of leading to conversation, which makes sense since it shows off not only your good looks but insight into your winning personality as well.

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