Not everybody is cut out for dating – and singledom can be hard, especially if you’re not exactly a social butterfly. Fortunately, the Internet has been a great (and inventive) tool for the shy and introverted among us to connect with that cute stranger across the metaphorical room.
For anyone who’s done it before, those generic, boy-meets-girl (or boy-meets-boy … or girl-meets-girl … you get the picture) dating sites are full of options. But what if it’s a very unique type of love you’re looking for? Well fear not, because the Internet has your back. And then some.
Regular dating sites, with a twist
This service takes the tediousness out of developing an online romance with someone over a long correspondence (although that’s a pretty good way to establish a solid foundation). Think of Skyecandy’s video feature as virtual speed dating: You can make yourself available for up to 10 video dates at anytime, and after setting your date preferences, you can begin a video date with a random match for a couple of minutes. After every video date, you can say Yes or No to the match. You can jot down notes and attach them to every video date you have so you can remember conversation highlights later on and also send a quick P.S. to someone you said Yes to. Once you say yes, you can get access to the person’s IM and social media contacts so you can resume your date outside of Skyecandy.
The Dating and Social Tabs help you find people within an age range, a specific location, and a list of parameters (you can define under My Type) as well as forge connections with people of a certain lifestyle, from a certain community or organization, even those who are looking for business contacts. VIP members can find out who has viewed their profile.
Similar to Skyecandy’s Video Dating feature, Flikdate is for people who only have time and patience for “the fastest date in the world.” Mainly a speed-dating tool for your mobile phone, Flikdate is a cute and fun app that does away with having to compose lengthy dating profiles and waiting for a chat or email response from someone you’re interested in; signup is pretty instantaneous and you immediately are able to chat with prospective dates. You can talk to a maximum of 25 people a day through the app, for a maximum of 90 seconds each – a great time limit if you want to cut the crap and see right off the bat if you hit it off with someone (this is operating on the idea that you get to see what the person is really like when they are under pressure). If you’re not interested in the person you are matched with, you can easily give them a Thumbs down or “flik” them away. If you think someone is cute, you can give them a Thumbs up and if you go as far as want to go on a real first date with them, you can request one through a simple click of a button. You can manage all your dates and your settings through the Flik Central.
Is the guy you’re talking to showing you his schlong? Not a problem – Flikdate has a Perv alert button that immediately terminates the transmission of an inappropriate video. Here’s a preview of what it would be like to use Flikdate:
You must be at least 18 years old to use Flikdate (you also must not be a douchebag, if possible).
Although Cloud Girlfriend was previously covered as a fantasy dating site that allows you to fake a romantic relationship, it seems to have long since abandoned its former paid platform and has taken on a normal, legitimate, and less-creepy path toward honest-to-goodness free online dating. It sort of pays homage to its former “fantasy dating site” label by encouraging users to “create the ultimate you;” you can use your Facebook details as a base for your dating profile and add more specific qualities to improve your matches.
Don’t judge the acting abilities of the “users” featured in the video below too hard. Online dating is for everybody!
If you’re into gaming
This is a pretty plain and straightforward dating site, specifically for gamers looking for gamer mates. According to the site, “Gamers carry a specific social stigma in today’s society. Introduce yourself as someone who plays video games, and you already feel a [judgment] coming. Using LFG Dating eliminates that part of the process; hopefully, the stigma altogether.” Whether your love for video games is casual or hardcore, there is a place for you to connect (and play) with potential partners.
Compared to other dating sites that allow you to browse through sample profiles, LFG (Looking for Group) Gaming requires you to register first before gaining access, a clear sign that this is for serious gamer-daters only.
Ever heard of the virtual world, Second Life? If you have and prefer it over your real life are quite fond of it, this is a paid online dating service that allows you to date within the popular 3D environment. It’s definitely a unique twist to just plain virtual romance over emails and IM chats. If you’re still sucking up enough courage to even start a video chat with someone over Skype, this site is perfect for you – it’s like going on a trial run before committing to a date in real life. You can have your avatar date another avatar in any setting on Second Life and still sort of have the same effect minus the physical intimacy, which is a general protocol for first dates anyway. Here’s what a PlzSayYes date would look like:
LARP stands for Live Action Role-playing, and this is a dating site specifically for those who enjoy pretending to be from the Medieval Ages, outer space, and a slew of other genres. It is managed by the Passions Network, a massive online dating portal that allows daters to venture into specific hobby-centered sub-sites, which is perfect for singles with super-particular tastes and interests that others find harder to relate to.
There is a wide variety of Passions to choose from, just check out the bottom of the homepage – the fact that there’s one that caters to the love of LARP is enough proof that there is indeed, someone for everyone.
Online dating, down to a science
You know how they say couples who’ve been happily together for a long time start to look alike? This online dating site plays off on that premise and even backs it up with science: Similar facial features apparently equals strong passion and a solid foundation. Really?! It seems gimmicky, but when you read something like this:
When we fall in love (or meet our facial feature match) the neurological response in the brain triggers a release of endorphins and other mood enhancing chemicals that puts being in love in a category all on its own.
…it’s hard to not give it at least the benefit of a doubt. Need further convincing? They have a gallery that features celebrity couple photos that show facial resemblance and a few single ones that could be great FaceMates. Also, here’s a video of Christina Bloom – Find Your FaceMate’s founder – talking about her pet project:
This isn’t necessarily scientifically proven to find you a match, but Become a Pick Up Artist could be a great tool to use to master the art of wowing potential dates with witticisms and snappy one-liners. Users play within a storyline to strategically learn how to pick up women and get to navigate through the RPG as Luke, a guy with a crumbling love-life until he meets a dating coach who changes his life. Based on the Love Systems method of “pick up artist extraordinaire” Nick Savoy, this iOS app aims to boost a guy’s confidence and maybe get him to Casanova status.
Find a mate with particular tastes
Cats are very finicky and particular pets, and they often match the demeanor of their owners. It makes sense to have a portal that makes it easy for cat lovers to connect like Purrsonals. You can video and audio chat, send emails and photos, browse through the latest cat news, and overall tell stories proving your shared love for your feline friends. You can be more specific about your ideal match through the site’s registration process.
Do you have an avid fascination for the sexy fireman or woman? Then this site is for you! Unlike on other generic dating websites, you don’t have to go through profiles of people from random walks of life … only those whose job it is to put out fires and carry kittens to safety. All free members can check out profiles, upload photos, send flirts, view members by location, and connect with date-ables via chat rooms.
Though it’s sort of hard to find people who like the same things we do, it shouldn’t be hard to find people who share a love for everything Apple. That’s right – Cupidtino is specifically designed so Mac and Apple lovers can meet and love on each other. “Diehard Mac & Apple fans often have a lot in common – personalities, creative professions, a similar sense of style and aesthetics, taste, and a love for technology,” according to the site. “We believe these are enough fundamental reasons for two people to meet and fall in love, and so we created the first Mac-inspired dating site to help you find other Machearts around you.”
You are required to sign up for the site using a Mac computer (naturally), but once you have an account, you can access Cupidtino on all your other Apple devices. You can spice up your profile through the site’s iTunes integration, where you can showcase you favorite music, apps, and movies. Membership is essentially free, but in order to actually respond to a message, you need to pay to get noticed. Hey, if you have enough money to finance your Apple addiction, then you should have enough moolah to pay for a monthly subscription.
Down to the details
In a world that’s predominantly occupied by single-births, only one out of 89 natural pregnancies end with twins. Since it’s pretty rare, Australian twins Lake and Flame (yes, those are their real names) thought it would be a great idea to figure out a way to meet twins from various parts of the world. What started out as a simple portal for talking about being twins became something more when Twins Realm – Lake and Flame’s personal website – began offering a twin dating page of sorts that matched up twin girls with twin boys. This may seem funny and even appear comical sometimes, but there’s no real reason why it wouldn’t be a great idea for two sets of twins to date each other (although it’s not really a requirement). Unfortunately,the Twin Dating page had to undergo software upgrades and has been in repair since early 2012. It would have been an interesting take on digital dating.
Some people are not driven by their libidos … but that doesn’t mean they’re done with dating. For people who find themselves perennially disinterested in sex, Asexualitic is the place to meet like-minded people online. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with platonic dating (call it friendship if you must), and this site thrives mainly on it. Sometimes, marriage is even in the cards. Bottom line is: friends can date, and this is a good place to start.
Edging toward creeptown
We’ve covered What’s Your Price in a recent app roundup, but here are a couple of other online dating sites that are sort of on the skeevy side (OK, definitely on the skeevy side).
“Where romance meets finance” – seriously?? SugarSugar attempts to make the sugar daddy-sugar baby relationship totally normal and acceptable. Why shouldn’t affluent men be allowed to splurge on dates? I guess it’s OK, but when you have a site specifically for it, it becomes less palatable – especially if the founder himself is using his site to find girls to lavish gifts with. Check out this panel trying to make sense of the concept:
To the rich guys out there, if you really want to find someone who will appreciate you and your piles of cash, there’s an app version of the site to make it easier to find sugar babies in your vicinity.
Sea captains are off land most of the time and are usually around a predominantly male crowd – this seems to be a perfect way for them to date since it will be quite hard to filter results on a regular dating site for matches who like sea men (sorry, we couldn’t help ourselves). The premise seems to be OK, until you get to this video:
Website features sea captains that sort of look like George R.R. Martin with fairly younger girls who appreciate the “grade A top quality sea captains” on the site. The girl in the video says the best thing about Sea Captain Date is that the guys don’t even know how to use the Internet (why is that good?). “Why settle for a boy with a car when you can have a man with a boat?” Uhh, OK. Whatever you say, lady.