The Truth about being a dating app virgin when you’re 25 years old

I’m your average 25-year-old gal. I have a (relatively) stable job, I drunk shop weekly, I work out less than weekly, I only use lingo like ‘bae’ as soon as it’s no longer cool and I feel a deep sense of accomplishment whenever I find the perfect pairing of meme and friend to tag.

There is one thing that’s a little off, though. Until very recently, I’ve never used a dating app.

No, I haven’t been living under a 4G-less rock, nor am I one of those people who is only interested in ‘organic meeting’ (I’m a terrible drunk, so I have more chance vomming on the love of my life at a bar than I do making him fall in love with me). Truth is, I’ve just got out of a very. long. relationship. (it’s cool, I’m ok, I’m totally over it, I didn’t even like the guy. *sob* *gulp* *sob* *gulp*)

ANYWAY. Within the first fortnight of singledom, a gal pal thought it would be best if I rip off the band-aid and dive straight into the dating game (and for those of you that hate overused idioms, that was me hitting two birds with one stone). So she signed me up to Badoo, cuz apparently, if I’m going to find a guy anywhere, it will be on the biggest dating app in the world.

From then, the reality of being a dating app virgin hit me. It’s been a whopping 4 weeks since I’ve been on the app and this is what I’ve learnt…

1. At first, your chat is inevitably going to be shit

At first, your chat is inevitably going to be shit

If you’ve just come out of a LTR (long term relationship), you’re so used to sending blunt as f*ck texts like ‘take bins out’ or ‘pizza?’ that you have no idea how you’re meant to speak in an enticing way. Christ, you haven’t actually flirted properly since you were like 15… and back then it was through your top friends on MySpace. Thank god for emojis.

2. You have NO idea what you’re looking for

You have no idea what you're looking for

Do you even have a ‘type’? After being with one guy for so long, it’s hard to know. If you do, Badoo does have a feature – Lookalikes – that lets you find people who look like someone else. So you can find your Ex 2.0 (lol jk, don’t go there). A Ryan Reynolds lookalike though. Now I could definitely get on board with that.

3. All your good pics are with your ex

All your good pics are with your ex

The few times you got glammed up for an event or holiday snap, you had your ex’s arm around you. This means now you have to awkwardly crop him out of every shot and each one of your profile pic will feature the same disembodied hand.

4. You didn’t realise there were so many ‘no go’ signs

So, apparently guys who do selfies are bad, but guys who do selfies with puppies are good. Gym mirror pics are bad, but working out and keeping quiet about it is good. And then there are the signs that he’s a creep, catfish, or even worse, is one of those ‘non-drinkers’. Thankfully, Badoo has a solution for all three of these issues: creeps can be easily blocked, you can turn on the ‘only view verified profiles’ feature to eradicate catfish, and when building profiles, people can select whether they like drinking or not. I know where my priorities lie.

5. You can totally embrace feeling like a player

When his ex is super hot

After being in a (hopefully) monogamous relationship for so long, it takes a while to get into the swing of dating multiple people at once. But when you do, it’s bloody fun. Although I do recommend getting a notebook / whiteboard for your kitchen to help with all the dating admin… Srsly, when you’re talking to more than 3 guys at once, they all start blurring into one.

6. You know you’re gunna be a-OK

Having just come out of a relationship, I’m not looking to jump back into anything serious yet (unless Ryan Reynolds suddenly becomes single and slides into my DMs). For now, I’m happy just chatting to guys on Badoo and going on casual dates for now – I’ve even tried out a couple of video chats (not even weird). In a selfish way, it’s helped my potentially fragile self-esteem post-breakup.

Plus, the satisfaction of swiping left when you come across your ex’s profile is pretty sweet. To see if your ex is lurking on Badoo, download the app here.