Blaine's Hinge Dating App Review (2022)Jan 29, 2022
I'm Blaine, I'm a dating coach for men. It's great to meet you!
To help guys determine the best app to meet women online, I periodically review dating apps on my blog.
(You can check out my Raya review here for example...)
Today we're talking about the dating app "designed to be deleted," Hinge.
Let's dive in 🌊
What is Hinge?
Hinge is one of my favorite dating apps, and I often recommend it to clients 😃
To use a car analogy, Hinge is like a Mercedes Benz E-Class:
Hinge delivers quality without pretense. Its interface is intuitive, attractive, and conducive to conversation.
Hinge is versatile. An E-Class can transport 5 people & their luggage to the airport, or 2 people to a classy dinner downtown. Likewise, you’ll find great singles on Hinge regardless of your background.
You know what you’re getting. Mercedes Benz has an established brand. And Hinge is on its way. It’s been around since 2012, and sets a clear standard that it’s “designed to be deleted,” so users are on the same page about seeking relationships, not hookups.
How does Hinge work?
Like most other dating apps, the Hinge experience centers around:
- Creating a 6-photo, 3-sentence profile 📸
- Swiping on potential matches 📲
- Engaging matches via in-app chat 💬
Hinge is unique in that you’re required to answer 3 pre-written question “prompts” as part of your profile.
(This isn't quite right — it's not "unique" anymore because other apps have copied the prompt feature, but Hinge was the first to use it!)
Here are examples of Hinge's prompts:
Prompts are designed to get conversation flowing with matches. Hinge offers 75 prompts to choose from!
A few of my favorites:
“I know the best spot in town for…” (opportunity to spotlight local expertise, and can lay up a date) 📍
“I’m convinced that…” (opportunity to highlight your sense of humor, and start conversations) 🧠
“A life goal of mine is…” (I like this because you can use it to showcase something important to you, but keep it light & playful) 💭
When you create your profile, you’ll also have the choice to share personal details like your:
- Education level
- Political views
… and much more.
I encourage clients to stick to sharing age, height, education level, and work only.
Women can often infer what they need to know about these from your photos, but listing them explicitly builds trust & answers questions.
Information about your personal habits like drinking and drug use can be TMI before you’ve matched though.
Several guys have told me they’ve dramatically increased their Hinge matches by removing this info from their profiles.
Once your profile’s set up, it’s time to make some matches.
Like most other dating apps, Hinge will show you a single-file queue of potential partners who meet your criteria (you can specify age, location, and lifestyle habits).
What makes the Hinge experience unique is that you don’t just “swipe,” you have to engage with a specific element in your crush’s profile.
For example, you must reply to one of their prompts, or choose one of their photos to “like” (with the option to include a note).
I like this, because it moves the conversation in a specific direction:
Why do you like her photo?
What makes her prompt response funny?
In reality, this feature doesn’t prevent users from matching and using generic and boring opening lines like “hey what’s up?”
But it’s a thoughtful step in the right direction.
Hinge has another queue where you can view users who’ve already “swiped right” on you (and read their messages, if they sent you one when they swiped).
If you swipe right back, you’ll move over to the match interface…
Here, you can view and engage with your matches.
The protocol for connecting with your matches on Hinge is the same as on most other apps:
- Swap a few text-based messages within the app 💬
- Transition things to SMS as soon as the connection’s established 📲
During the pandemic, because people were hesitant to meet up in-person amidst COVID-19, Hinge added audio & video chat functionality.
Some of my friends used these features when they launched, but as the Coronavirus saga has carried on, most have reverted to the usual “swap a few text messages then get off the app” flow.
(Quick tangent — wondering how to spice up your Hinge chats with photos? Check out my guide on how to send a photo via Hinge for the answer!)
Who is Hinge for?
Hinge is great for most singles:
It has a high-quality audience, but isn’t exclusive
It’s oriented toward dating (vs ultra-casual hookups, or super-serious life-long partnerships)
Hinge’s Audience 👪
I remember seeing Hinge tout how the majority of its users are college-educated, working professionals.
Regardless, I’ve been impressed with Hinge’s audience from an engagement standpoint.
There are fewer fake or vacant profiles on Hinge than on other apps in my experience.
I think this is because Hinge nails:
- The signup experience. Hinge requires enough effort to onboard that lazy creeps won’t bother, but not so many questions that normal users are scared off 😃
- Product marketing. Hinge’s slogan is “designed to be deleted", which resonates, because no one loves online dating 😅
- User experience. Hinge takes trust & safety complaints seriously, and gets bad actors off their app fast 👋
Hinge User Intent 😏
I use the term “intent” to describe where on the relationship-seriousness spectrum a dating app’s audience tends cluster.
“Low intent” means the app’s audience is more hookup-oriented (e.g. Tinder, though the most extreme example I can think of would be Grindr!)
“High intent” means the app’s audience is more relationship-oriented (e.g. Match.com, or an actual matchmaking service)
Hinge’s audience is medium-to-high intent.
Hinge markets itself as “designed to be deleted,” which is to say its goal is to help users find relationships and get off Hinge.
In my experience, Hinge users are looking to date (vs casually hook up, or immediately hop into long-term relationships...)
This is a good thing. It means you won’t waste time engaging with people who only want to fool around, nor will you consistently be saddled with desperate “must-get-married-ASAP” matches 😬
When Can You Use Hinge?
Like most dating apps, Hinge is:
On-demand which is to say you can swipe whenever you want, and there’s no special timing element (e.g. “you can only meet or engage with potential partners Sundays at 12pm”) ⏲️
Usage-capped in that Hinge cuts you off for the day once you’ve “liked” 10 profiles, or swiped left on an indeterminate number of profiles 🧢
However you can purchase a premium Hinge membership for $5-10/month (the price is lower the longer you’re willing to commit) to unlock:
- Unlimited daily swipes 📈
- The ability to see everyone who’s liked you at once (instead of going through a queue one-by-one) 🤩
Where Can You Use Hinge?
Hinge has users all over the world, though it’s not as popular abroad as Tinder.
Like most other dating apps, Hinge’s userbase is densest in cities.
And like most other dating apps, you can specify a “location radius” outside of which you won’t consider potential matches (e.g. <10 miles, <25 miles, or <50 miles from your location).
Basically, Hinge is great if you’re located in any major metropolitan area in the United States.
Another feature I love is that Hinge allows you to choose your location by default.
This means you can meet potential matches somewhere you’re not physically located without paying for a premium membership.
One other callout about Hinge’s location service is it’s ultra-specific. Hinge displays your neighborhood of choice, not just your city, to potential matches.
Why Should You Use Hinge?
If you’re looking to date, Hinge is one of the best places to start online.
I recommend Hinge to almost all of my clients if they’re not on it already ☑️
Hinge is well-established (it’s been around since 2012) and has lots of high-quality, high-intent singles on the platform.
Several of my girlfriends don’t use any dating apps outside of Hinge!
However if you’re only interested in:
- Casual hookups 👉👌
- Ultra-serious relationships ASAP 👰
- Partners who meet ultra-specific criteria (e.g. X religious belief, or Y educational background) 🦄
… Hinge may not the best dating app for you.
Anyway, give it a try for yourself, and let me know what you think!
PS. One last word for the wise…
You’ll find awesome women on literally every mainstream dating app: Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, Raya, OKCupid, Match.com, Zoosk, Coffee Meets Bagel, BlackPeopleMeet.com, JDate, etc.
☝️ Your profile across all these dating apps is essentially the same.
What do I mean?
Whether you’re using Hinge, Plenty Of Fish, Raya, or another app, you’ll need some combination of the following to showcase who you are, and what you're about:
- 6 photos 📸
- 3-6 sentences of written text 📝
Where I'm going with this is...
What dating apps you use (e.g. Hinge vs Bumble vs Tinder) matters about 1/100th as much as the quality of your profile.
- You'll use the same photos and written text to construct your profile regardless of what app you use ⚒️
- Many women use multiple dating apps (i.e. you're likely to see the same women on Bumble and Hinge) 👯♀️
- There are awesome women on all dating apps (i.e. just because some women only use Match.com and others only use Raya, that doesn't preclude you from meeting someone who'd be a terrific partner on Hinge) 🤷♀️
What does this mean for you?
You don't need to be on every dating app (or a specific dating app) to meet someone you like online.
You're better off improving your photos and your copywriting skills, so you stand out on whatever apps you're using today!
💸 This same principle applies to paid dating app features like DMs or extra swipes on Raya, Super Likes on Tinder, Roses on Hinge, etc...
Paid features might get you +1 or +2 matches per month.
If +1 or +2 matches per month sounds great, and you won’t miss the $20 (or whatever the add-on costs), don't let me stop you.
But the impact is negligible compared with the +100 or +200 matches you’d get per month by simply improving your profile 🙃
And if you're ready to improve your profile, check out my free guides below!
PS. Ready to uplevel your dating life fast?
I'd love to share my best free guides, so you can start making progress immediately:
- 📲 What I Swipe Right On (how to improve your matches on apps like Hinge fast)
- 💬 Master The Message (how to create more chemistry via text)
- 🏀 How To Bounce Back (dating 101 for newly single guys)
- 😅 You're Nice, But... (dating 101 for "nice" guys)
Just pop in your name and email below, and I'll send over your free guides immediately!
Let's get your dating life on track!
I’ll share your guides and a couple tips a week. 100% privacy, no spam or b.s.