In this technology-filled age, people are more and more willing to accept the idea that dating online is a legitimate way to meet someone. Truly, I’ve met a lot of my past partners on the internet – some through searching, and some through happy accidents.
But what if you’re actively looking for someone online? Can you find someone by filling out some questionnaires on a website?
Of course, if you are dating online, you’ll need to follow some basic precautions in order to ensure that you’ll have an enjoyable experience, but there is a good chance that you could meet the woman of your dreams on an app.
Here’s our rundown of the best places to meet someone online.
Okay, I’ll admit – I’m a huge fan of the name of this one. It’s a bit tongue-in-cheek, but the implication that it’s an app just for hook-ups isn’t true. Their motto is “There are no boundaries to life, nor should there be with any legit lesbian app. Let’s create something together that’s mind blowing for lesbians. An app which satisfies our needs for friendship, and oh yeah – love” – which speaks to me on an emotional level. All first impressions aside, Scissr is all about connecting you to other lesbians, whether you’re looking for love, friendship, or just something to do.
They offer a wealth of free services that will help you to expand your social (or romantic) circle – including profile reviews that guarantee no “dudes or fake accounts”. As someone who’s tired of people on “social sites” who aren’t who they say they are (and don’t take “just friends” for an answer), this feature alone is a game changer.
Sure, there are other sites and apps that take action to prevent fake accounts, but Scissr makes it one of their primary goals. After all, the “lesbian community” isn’t just about lesbians – it’s about all women who even think they might be interested in other women. Scissr was created for all of us.
Zoosk is an interesting site. Like many other online dating sites, you pay for a membership, which puts a little more pressure on you to actually “get your money’s worth” out of it (since it’s literal money spent, rather than just your time). That little tidbit aside (hey, if you’re looking for a lady to love, chances are you’re going to be spending some money on her anyway, right?), Zoosk has a user base of over 50 million members. In the online dating world, it’s a numbers game. Their large numbers mean that there are, statistically, a lot of women who love other women.
Zoosk users also love that the site (and app) are fun to use. After all, you don’t want to feel that it’s a second job just looking for love, right? Instead of filling out a bunch of profile questions, Zoosk evaluates their users’ “click habits” – what’s likely to make you check out a person further? Chances are, that’ll ring true across the board if it happens regularly. They use this information to (eventually) suggest you people you might like to talk to. They say that every interaction you do on the site will influence the algorithm, meaning it learns what you like and will tailor your matches to meet it.
For a one-month membership, you’re looking at almost $30 – but if you’re willing to commit to a longer membership, the price goes down dramatically when you buy a few months in bulk. The three-month membership plan drops it down to $19.98 per month, while the six-month drops it all the way to $12.49 per month. If you’re going to do it, you might as well go all in!
HER is a bit different than many of the other apps and sites on our list. Instead of focusing on dating, HER has its focus set to the wants and needs of the lesbian community.
As their site states:
Gay guys had their zillion apps, straight people got Earth. We wanted lesbians to have their space.”
Ladies, I’m pretty sure you can agree – we all want to connect with other lesbians, right?
By taking the focus off of dating (although there are definitely dating-site features at play here), HER presents itself as an all-in-one solution to the social problems you might face. Want to find a fun gay party? Meet some new friends? Read news stories that are personally relevant to you? HER helps you do all of that.
Currently, their reach is fairly limited (only on iOS in a few English speaking countries) but they are taking requests to launch for Android as well as new regions. As far as newcomers go, HER promises to be a strong contender in the lesbian social scene – and you can get in while it’s still new!
Match has been a player in the game for a long time now, outliving many other “fad” dating sites that came and went. There are millions of members around the world and their claims are backed up by actual results. (Chances are, if you hear of someone meeting someone else on Match, they’re pretty happy about the experience.) They are not exclusively a “lesbian” dating site, but with millions of members worldwide and a warm welcome for those in the gay community, they’re not sweeping us under the rug, either (remember when eHarmony did that? Yeah, we do too.)
Match has always sought to improve the online dating experience, and even today with so many competitors, they’re constantly seeking out new ways to improve their algorithms and increase their users’ success. Possibly the biggest way they do this is through their search functions – they’re easy to use, very welcoming to under-confident daters (whether gay, straight, or bisexual), and they come up with good, solid matches.
In addition to their search functions, they actually have features that promote the users getting together offline, too. That’s actually pretty monumental from a dating app, as they definitely make more money if you’re spending more time looking for a date than actually getting one, right? But they know that their easiest advertising is going to be word-of-mouth from happy new couples.
There is an extensive questionnaire that you’re asked to fill out when you first start, and many members might be put off by this – but it’s important to realize that, on any dating site, the more questions you answer, the easier it is for the people behind the site to use math and science to find your perfect partner – which means less work on your part. Match at least does a fairly good job of making the questions fun and simple – super important!
They’re a bit more expensive than some of the other options, and they will ask you to do a bit of work to get your accurate matches – but once you do, they’ll not only give you their choices for who you should be with, but they actually tell you why they were picked. This makes it easier to understand your own preferences, and it can help you to understand where you should be re-evaluating your priorities if you do get a match that wasn’t a good fit.
So, earlier we briefly touched on the fiasco that was eHarmony “not allowing” gay members on their site. Compatible Partners was their answer to that fiasco. Powered by eHarmony’s hugely successful matchmaking algorithms, Compatible Partners is directed straight at the gay and lesbian community. They’re not one of the bigger sites, but on the internet, there are no guarantees that success can’t be had in the smaller communities. After all, matchmaking algorithms already imply a sense of destiny – wouldn’t it be great if your perfect partner was on the same small site as you?
Something that’s exclusive to Compatible Partners is their “eH+” – a premium matchmaking service, which partners you with a personal matchmaker. This personal matchmaker will actually interview you, and other users who pay for this premium service, in order to determine not only what you want based on science, but also what you want based on you. This helps to balance the science of compatibility with the reality that is your interests and desires.
However, Compatible Partners goes a step beyond even this revolutionary step. How would you feel about having a detailed description of who you are in a relationship, what you need to get out of it, and the reasons your past relationships have failed? (Wow, putting it that way, it could be a bit scary to read!) They offer the “Book of You” – which does exactly that. And, with a few simple steps, you can make this “book” public to your matches – they can read all about what makes you, you.
So, how much are all these features really going to cost you? Quite a bit, actually, but if you’re really looking for “the one”, it might be a worthwhile investment. After all, the more in-depth their matchmaking strategy is, the more beneficial and successful the relationship will likely be in the long run. Their membership options are offered in 6-month intervals, and of course the longer chunk of time you buy at once the less expensive it is overall. (Not to mention, the longer you stick with it, the more likely it is to find the perfect woman for you – their algorithm isn’t at its peak success after just a month or two; it takes time to find the perfect solution to your needs.)
This is an exclusive dating pool, for those who have strong “qualifications” and criteria for their dates. In fact, over 67% of their users are University graduates, making their choice of the word “elite” make a lot of sense. If you value excellence in your matches and don’t mind filling out a bunch of questions (remember that earlier we said the more questions there are, the more precise the matching is), Elite Singles may be the right choice for you.
In addition to the initial questionnaire you fill out for your profile, there are settings for your profile that make it easier to custom-tailor your matches to your own wants and needs. Their questions cover every possible aspect of your perfect match, from their views on step-children to their character and their hygiene. While many other sites focus on what they think would make a good match for you, Elite Singles lets you set your criteria around what you require from a future partner. After all, if you’re searching for perfection, wouldn’t you want them to be perfect for you?
Of course, the typical conundrum lies within this process. The more questions you fill out, the easier it is to weed out someone who doesn’t meet your standards, but the less standards you set, the more matches you’ll get. It seems like a catch-22, but with “elite” right in the name you’d expect the matches to be pretty exclusive.
Their prices vary greatly depending on the number of features you choose to buy access to – which is pretty standard in the online dating game. Like so many things in the age of apps, it’s free to sign up and “use” the site, and you only pay for premium features if you actually want to use them. Of course, the premium features house the most possibilities, but that’s not to say it’s a required part of the process.
FindHrr is one of few apps that boast an entirely lesbian crew – which sets it apart because, who knows lesbians better than other lesbians? Officially this is a social app (rather than a dating app) which means that they don’t just cater to those looking for love (or sex – and in fact, they discourage sending “naughty” pictures, which is generally good advice to follow anyway!). Their site reassures users with the simple premise:
Whether you’re seeking a hot date for the weekend, want to find the best gay bar or lesbian event near you or love reading reviews on local attractions when you travel abroad, findhrr will surpass all your expectations.”
Coming from someone who’s continually looking for new connections, apps like this are great. Even if you are looking for a date, sites and apps that help to take the pressure off things are super helpful – especially for those who may not be ready to fully come out of the closet yet. If you’re looking for a way to get more into the lesbian scene without leaving your comfort zone, FindHrr may be just what you’re looking for.
Plenty of Fish
Fun little back story: After a break-up, years ago, I was on PoF looking for a date. I had a friend who I told about the site, and she responded with a quick, “That sounds like a lesbian thing.” Well, it’s not an exclusively lesbian dating pool, actually, but there are many bisexual and lesbian members in their numbers.
Plenty of Fish doesn’t have a million questions for you, and I don’t recall there ever being any “premium features” (if there were, I certainly didn’t use them). It’s not the most scientific site, but the fact that it’s free means there are a bunch of users just waiting to talk to you. You can message people for free, and you’re encouraged to fill out your specifications on your profile – but the real “work” is up to you. (Hey, it’s free, what do you expect?)
They do have some scientific matching algorithms available to their users, such as their “Chemistry Test” which evaluates the things you want and the things you need, and helps to tell you whether your potential matches will meet those needs or not. It’s a nice touch, but it is still a free match, and your results may vary.
Plenty of Fish offers some fun features that you often have to pay for on other sites, which makes it a great budget-conscious choice. They estimate 3 million active daily users – again, not all of them women interested in other women – and they claim to be the most popular dating site out there. I’m not sure if that’s true or if it’s just marketing hype, but when I was on the site I met a ton of people. Some weren’t right for me, some were better off as friends, and some were quite weird. (I once actually had “a date” with an escort that I met on PoF – that was a crazy experience, to say the least.)
For those who are looking for a different experience (but definitely looking for romance), GaydarGirls offers “the largest selection of gay personals on the web”. It’s not the most highly-featured site out there, but it does cover all the basics of a dating app – profile creation, photo albums, chat rooms, and search engines. If you’re only focused on the possibilities and not the overall look, GaydarGirls is a minimalist answer to the age-old question – “Where are the eligible lesbians around here?!”
All jokes aside, GaydarGirls presents itself as a simple solution to your dating needs. For those who like the structure of such sites as Craigslist and Yahoo! Chat, you’re likely to feel right at home with GaydarGirls. There aren’t any extra frills or distractions – just you and other single lesbians.
OKCupid is another one of the freebies that isn’t exclusively for lesbians, but allows a great deal of success. Instead of treating their matchmaking questions like one big test, you are welcomed to fill out as many or as few questions as you like.
Something that sets them apart is that they have you evaluate what you want your partner’s answers to be. Obviously, you might not know – but this small difference between them and other sites actually lets you specify the things that don’t really matter to you. After all, just because you’re deeply religious doesn’t automatically mean that you require a partner who is – right? (This is of course just an example.)
OKCupid uses your answers to these tests, as well as some fun personality quizzes (yeah, really!) to gauge your compatibility with your matches. You are shown a score of how likely you are to be friends, enemies, or lovers, based on what each of you answered to the questions. You can even compare answers directly if your match has allowed their answers to be posted publicly. If I remember correctly, this also extends to the personality quizzes – after all, don’t you want your matches to be fun as well as serious?
As far as free sites go, I personally stand behind OKCupid. The fact that you’re not forced to sit through tons of questions all at once makes it a lot easier to explore the site on your own time. Got a few minutes with nothing better to do? Might as well answer a few questions! You can even go back and change your answers to questions you’ve answered previously, if you’ve found that your needs and wants have changed. Humans are fluid in nature, after all, and things change over time – but OKCupid stays free.
As I’m sure the name implies, Pink Sofa is all about the lesbian social scene. The name Pink Sofa itself was chosen to imply that it would be a comfortable, friendly place – just like your living room! The idea has resonated with a lot of people, too… Enough that it is one of the longest-running businesses owned and managed by lesbians.
Founder Liz James came up with the idea over 13 years ago, after realizing that the lesbian dating scene was, to put it simply, a bit sketchy. She wanted to offer a way for lesbians to meet other lesbians without the frustrations of the bar scene, the risks of the personals scene, or the headaches of the less-exclusive dating site scene. After all, as women who love other women, are needs are different.
For those interested in Pink Sofa, there are both free and premium membership options, which makes it inclusive to people of any budget. After all, not everyone can afford the high prices of the online dating world – but Pink Sofa has fairly reasonable prices in the first place (as low as $10 per month if you subscribe in 12-month increments). They occasionally offer free trial premium memberships as well, just in case you’re not sure if you want to pull the trigger yet.
Well, obviously, if you’re dedicated to finding your perfect partner, the more in-depth your search is, the more likely it is to be successful. I’m not really sure how effective any of these are for finding a match, personally, as I’ve been matched with people who I had actually previously tried to date with no success. (Hey, even science isn’t perfect. And there was that one time that OKCupid matched me with my mother… Talk about awkward!)
But if you don’t mind investing a little time into finding the perfect person for you, and you’re willing to take the steps necessary to guarantee your own success outside of their algorithms, there is scientific proof that these matching algorithms work, at least some of the time.
The extent of the weight of science in each of these sites is different, and what works for one may not work for all. Your best bet is of course to use common sense when going on any dates, and to take pride in your own future. After all, any matchmaking site is built with the intent of earning money.
They get more money if they have a proven track record, but they’ll never do all the work for you.
Take care, and best of luck on your search!