What Is Hinge?
Hinge is a location-based dating app that is designed to be deleted. That means that it puts a heavy focus on people finding the right partners for a serious relationship, rather than a casual fling like some other dating apps might produce.
Hinge uses a well-thought-out algorithm for better matches, which could be part of the reason that 3 out of 4 dates from Hinge will lead to a second. Pretty good odds huh? But how exactly does this app work and how is it any different to what’s currently out there?
How Does Hinge Work?
The basic mechanics of a lot of these dating apps like liking someone, waiting until they like you back, and only then being able to message is consistent with Hinge. But rather than just having a few photos to look at it and then decide if you like that person or not, Hinge offers parts of that person’s profile you can like.
Hinge works by allowing users to browse through other users profiles. The user can either like one of the other users photos or their answer to a ‘prompt’ like: “two truths and a lie.” If that person likes them back, they can now start a conversation.
So, the big difference to other popular dating apps is starting off a conversation off the back of a photo, or an answer on their profile. This means that it is much more personalized and pinpointed.
Rather than just starting a “general” conversation with someone, Hinge gives you many more prompts to work with. You’ve broken the ice and are less likely to have the conversation fizzle out, probably why most dates lead to a second.
How Your Hinge Profile Works
Putting your own Hinge profile together is fairly simple. There are a few things that are a must. On Hinge, you can’t do the sneaky like on Tinder by chucking up one photo of yourself with no bio.
On Hinge, you have to include 6 photos (or videos) and 3 prompt answers.
Also, the fact that it is a location-based app, meaning that it will usually only match you with people in your area, you have to ensure your location is set accurately.
Some other basic info and preferences are also required. Let’s take a look at exactly how you would go about setting up your profile.
On Hinge you have to have at least 6 photos or videos. This is a big difference compared to other dating apps that will let you jump on with only one.
This is in line with Hinge’s claims of being relationship-focused.
Requiring users to add more details about themselves helps give other users a better look at who they are as a person and therefore are more likely to know if they would be a good match.
Prompts are a series of questions and conversation starters that Hinge has provided for you to include on your profile.
They are a fun way to break the ice and give you and your match something to talk about right off the bat.
I find that a lot of conversations on Hinge will skip the boring small talk that so often comes with conversations on other apps.
Some examples of prompts are: ‘My childhood crush’, ‘On a Saturday at 2am you can find me…’, ‘The secret to get to know me is…’
It also helps to once again give your match a better feel for who you are. This is a testament to the fact that Hinge requires you to answer a minimum of three prompts.
With more information, your potential match can now see your different layers and therefore hopefully you will be more likely to find the one.
These are surface-level facts about yourself and touching on some beliefs. For example your work, schooling, education level are included but also your religious and political views.
You can either answer or opt to leave them blank, which will be displayed on your profile. Or, you can decide to keep them hidden.
This is your basic information like age, height, gender and location, but does go a little bit deeper as well with your ‘family plans’. Once again you can keep it visible or hidden on your profile.
In an effort to help people to get to know each other even better, Hinge has included ‘My Vices’. These include drinking, smoking, marijuana and drugs. Here you can list if you like these things, or you like them only sometimes, you never do them or you can always just leave them out.
Preferences are all about what you are looking for. You have your ‘basic preferences’ like what gender you are interested in and here you can set your location (as you will only be matched with people in or around your location).
So if you are out of town for the weekend, you can still select your hometown to swipe on.
Then you have ‘member preferences’ which are going a little bit deeper, like age range, maximum distance, ethnicity and religion.
‘Preferred Preferences’ are a paid extra as part of the ‘Preferred’ subscription plan.
This basically means you can get even more pinpointed by essentially building a set of criteria that your match has to meet based on their virtues, vitals and vices.
I personally believe you should avoid preferences as much as possible. The reason for this is that I believe when you have set criteria of who your partner should be, you sometimes fail to see opportunities that might have been better for you.
People sometimes don’t understand what I mean when I say that you can meet the love of your life even if they don’t meet one or a few of your criteria of what you think makes a perfect partner.
It’s kind of like finding the partner that you didn’t know you needed. In my opinion, you should leave preferences out and be open-minded to who you will meet. Juliet probably would have excluded Romeo from her preferences if she had the choice…
When you set your preferences, Hinge won’t completely exclude those people that don’t meet your preferences.
Even though the algorithm most likely won’t present you with people that don’t match your preferences, you still may come across them, especially if you use the app a lot. The user’s preferences will be shown on their profile, but it won’t completely ignore people that don’t meet those preferences. Dealbreakers do.
Dealbreakers allow you to select any of these preferences as a dealbreaker, meaning that if a profile doesn’t meet your requirements, you strictly will not be shown their profile. You already know my stance on having preferences, so obviously I’m not the biggest fan of dealbreakers.
How Hinge Discover Works
Discover is just like swiping on other dating apps like Tinder or Bumble. The difference is that with Hinge, you only like a part of the users profile, rather than the whole thing. You can do this by clicking the red heart that appears next to users pictures or prompt answers.
To apparently increase your chances by 3 times, you can attach a comment to the like. If the profile shown to you isn’t your type you can simply press the X to pass on it. You are given only 10 likes a day, unless you upgrade to become a Preferred member. These 10 likes reset everyday at 4am.
How Hinge Matching Works
If a user has happened to like you already they will appear in the section called ‘likes you.’
This is where you can see a list of the users that have liked you and therefore be able to decide if the feeling is reciprocated. If they have left a comment, you will be able to see this as well.
You will only be able to see the latest person and every other profile that has liked you will be blurred.
To see all of these profiles, you either need to action the latest profile showing (by matching or by passing) or you need to upgrade to become a Preferred Member.
If you decide to like one of these profiles as well, their profile will be moved to the ‘Matches’ section where you will be able to send unlimited messages. Congratulations, you now have a match!
You can also like or pass on people that may not have seen your profile yet, just by going to the Discover section of the app. If one of these profiles likes you back, this new match will appear in the ‘matches’ section as well.
How Hinge Messaging Works
Compared to other dating apps that have tried to take a unique approach to who can message who, like Bumble, Hinge is very straightforward in that once you match with someone, anyone can send a message, as many times as they want.
The big difference between Hinge and other dating apps is it allows you to at least send some sort of message before even matching.
I’m talking about the fact that you can leave a comment with your like, essentially starting the conversation already.
I highly recommend doing this as Hinge’s own website claims it will increase your chances of a match by 3 times, which is a lot.
So you will never be in that situation again where you see a profile and something jumps out at you and you wish you just had the chance to make an impression, rather than hoping your match likes you back before you can.
Basically, Hinge can help you find potential dates, not based purely off some photos and a short bio, it allows you to dig deeper, probably the reason it is so successful.
How The Hinge Algorithm Works
Hinge recently launches something called ‘Most Compatible’. Every single day Hinge will present you with one profile that its algorithm has worked out to be well, most compatible. But how does the algorithm know what you would like?
Based off your answers, preferences and then activity while using the app, Hinge determines profiles that you would like, and that would like you back. Remember, the goal with this app is a real connection.
Elite Daily sat down with Jean-Marie Mcgrath, The Director of Communications at Hinge and she said, “considering everything we know about you so far, your ‘Most Compatible’ is the person we think you would be most interested in dating, who would be most interested in dating you.”
The app uses an algorithm called ‘the stable marriage problem’ which basically takes information from your profile and information from another profile and matches them together.
Obviously, a lot more goes into it than that, and I’m no algorithm expert, so if you geek out on algorithms read the more in-depth look here.
Hinge even goes as far to ask its users privately if they have in fact met, and if they want to go on another date. The constant inputs around the world are helping Hinge’s machine learning and algorithms to improve daily.
How Hinge ‘Preferred Members’ Paid Model Works
Hinge is free, but if you do want to upgrade to become a ‘Preferred Member’ you will have to pay. We will discuss this further below. Once you download Hinge it will prompt you to sign up by either connecting your Facebook or your phone number. Allow access to all required permissions and then you are good to get started!
Just like every other dating app out there that includes a paid upgrade, Hinge has also joined the party. Preferred Members is a paid subscription that is paid monthly, quarterly or bi-yearly.
Purchasing the upgrade allows users to access features that aren’t available to non-paying users. These features are nothing new, we have seen them in other apps before. But regardless, let’s break down what exactly your money will get you if you decide to upgrade.
See Who Likes You: Just like Tinder Gold or Bumble Beeline, Hinge also gives you the option to check out all of the profiles that have already liked your profile. As mentioned earlier, you will be able to always see the latest profile that has liked you, but all the other ones will be blurred. With this feature, all of the profiles that have liked you will now be shown.
Preferred Preferences: As mentioned earlier, these are preferences that are digging way deeper than the standard ‘age range’ and ‘maximum distance’. These will allow you to exclude people from matching with you by setting a series of criteria that your match has to meet. For example, you can use ‘Preferred Preferences’ to exclude people based on their height, family plans or drug use.
Unlimited Likes: Hinge only gives you 10 likes a day, which according to a lot of people, isn’t enough. If you want to find the right one quicker, maybe upgrading to get past this restriction is the way to go.
How To Download Hinge
Hinge is here to stay. It’s a wildly popular app already in the US and is starting to take over the rest of the world. So jump on the bandwagon now if you haven’t already.
If you are new to online dating in general, I suggest you check out my full eBook guide to Tinder: Tinder Hacked. Even if your heart is set on using Hinge, you will definitely learn concepts and tips that will translate over. Otherwise, get matching!