It’s 2020 and online dating is now the norm. In fact, meeting people in the wild tends to be referred to as the “old-fashioned” way these days. Personally, I’m all for online dating, but you have to make sure you’re using the right app. Let’s figure out the right app for you from among these best dating apps.

Exactly what the “right app” means for you is entirely subjective. It depends on what you’re looking for and your preferred way of finding it. Someone looking exclusively for a long-term relationship has different requirements compared to a couple looking to experiment with a third.

It’s time to throw out the old stereotypes and societal expectations—modern dating is all about empowerment and going after what we want, whatever that might look like. 

I’m about to give you a quick rundown of the best dating apps right now and who they’re best suited to. Read through each of these, go check them out for yourself and let us know what you think!

Hinge

App Store Rating: 4.3

Target Audience: Both casual and serious dating

Pros

  • Quality of users and profiles
  • Great concept beyond profile creation and layout
  • Very active user base
  • Communicate with users without having to match

Cons

  • Expect to be inundated with notifications (every time someone likes you!)

While the rest of these apps are in no particular order, Hinge is at the top for a reason. From my experience, this is the standout winner right now.

It’s similar enough to the other major dating apps that it felt familiar, yet it comes with some great points of difference.

Firstly, you don’t have to write a big block of bio text. Instead, you add your photos with the option of selecting a relevant caption. You also select a few very simple questions and provide brief answers to them. For example “A life goal of mine:”. That’s it, no broad bio box, just photos and some Q&A.

When it comes to liking people, you don’t swipe left or right and wait to see if you match. Instead, you ‘like’ one of their photos or answers and get the option to comment on it straight away.

I like this approach because it forces you to be more selective in your liking process. You have to pick something to like and get creative with an opening comment. It’s not just mindless swiping left or right.

Subjectively, I’ve also found the quality of women on here to be much higher. I don’t know if this is algorithmic (although I’ve matched and met up with many of them, it’s not just inactive profiles) or attractive women get less sleazy bs here. Either way, I enjoy the outcome.

Higher quality profiles, a more engaging process and no waiting to see if people match. I’m all for it. Hinge is definitely one of the best hookup sites available right now that most people should give a shot too.

Bumble

App Store Rating: 4.0

Target Audience: Both casual and serious dating 

Pros

  • Broad, active user base
  • Quality of users is quite high
  • Women must initiate conversation after matching
  • Very active support/dev team

Cons

  • Too many notifications
  • Many reports of being charged a subscription when signing up for the free trial

Unless you’ve remained firmly under a rock for the last few years, you’ve heard of Bumble. For the 12 of you that haven’t used it, the app is very similar to most major dating apps. The differentiating factor here is that women have to message first.

On Tinder, when two people match, either party can initiate the conversation. Societal expectations generally mean this is up to the guy. With Bumble, women have to reach out first.

From the opinions I’ve heard, women tend to prefer this over Tinder because it cuts down on the sleaze factor. They don’t have an inbox full of thirsty messages. It also makes them a little more selective since they know they have to make the first move.

As with most dating apps, I’d suggest taking some time learning how to write a quality dating app bio. This could be the difference between having that conversation or going ignored!

Tinder

App Store Rating: 3.7

Target Audience: Mostly hookups but worthwhile for relationships too

Pros

  • The largest user base of all current dating apps
  • Convenient and intuitive user interface for sorting through profiles

Cons

  • The occasional spam profile or users just trying to gain Instagram followers
  • Unnecessary notifications/badges

How could a dating app list be complete without mentioning the one that started it all? Even if you’ve been married since 2012 when it launched, you’re bound to know a bit about it.

It’s still a very popular option (a reported 57 million users!) and great for just about any kind of dating. You’ll come across the occasional spam account and people trying to gain Instagram followers. I’m really talking about <1% of profiles here so hardly enough to avoid the app.

Feeld

App Store Rating: 4.2

Target Audience: Sex-positive people looking to explore

Pros

  • For people looking to explore sexually
  • The ability for couples to link their profiles when looking for a third/another couple
  • A very positive, open and inviting user base

Cons

  • A somewhat limited user base

If you’re looking to do a little sexual exploration, Feeld is the app you want. Designed specifically for this purpose, it works quite nicely because everyone on there is on the same page.

As long as you’re not specifically looking for a long-term relationship it’s totally acceptable to put it all out there on Feeld. From my experience, I’ve come across everything from single women looking for hookups to married couples seeking various arrangements.

Within the confines of the law, there is no right on wrong here—let that freak flag fly and you’re bound to come across some like-minded users.

Happn

App Store Rating: 4.1

Target Audience: Mostly relationships but worthwhile for hookups too

Pros

  • Clean user interface
  • Interesting match functionality
  • Very active user base

Cons

  • Smaller user base than the major dating apps

This is another app with an interesting difference. To be honest I found it to be predominantly a gimmick after using the app for a while but it’s interesting nonetheless.

Rather than just showing you a bunch of matches in your area, it shows you people you often cross paths with. For example, maybe you’re near another Happn user on the drive to work every morning around the same time.

Through location tracking, Happn picks up on this fact and you’ll both see each other as potential matches.

Now, unless you live in downtown NYC, it’s unlikely you’ll have all that many options to choose from. Not to worry though, the app also has a more Tinderesque function too. This way you aren’t limited to just those people you cross paths with.

All in all the user base is very active and all accounts seem to be legit. It’s also useful whether you’re looking to hook up online or find a romantic partner.

Coffee Meets Bagel

App Store Rating: 4.4

Target Audience: Mostly relationships

Pros

  • More filtering options than most dating apps
  • An active user base
  • A clean and simple user interface

Cons

  • “Discover” is limited to just 20 profiles per day (unless you pay)
  • Smaller user base than the major dating apps

Coffee Meets Bagel is a name I’ve started to hear more and more over the past 12 months or so. It offers a daily “suggested” list as well as a “discover” function, which is great.

More importantly though, with “discover,” you can use all the usual filters (age, height, distance, etc.) as well as the type of degree they have and if they’ve been active in the last 72hrs.

Personally I think filtering by degree is a little pointless since attending university does not equal intelligence, drive or a good personality. That aside, being able to filter down to only active users is a huge win.

If you decide to check this one out, have a read of their CMB 101 blog post first. It’s full of great info to get you started.

Wooplus

App Store Rating: 4.4

Target Audience: Plus size dating

Pros

  • A safe, body-positive environment
  • Actively promotes a community vibe
  • A very active user base

Cons

  • Potential matches virtually limited to plus size only
  • The potential to attract fetishists

Last but not least we have Wooplus. This is a dedicated app for plus size dating and seems to be doing very well for itself. After all, while 48% of people aged 18-29 are using dating apps, what percentage do you think fall into this category?

They do a fantastic job of promoting a body-positive mindset and a safe space for the more curvy users. If you fall into this category or you prefer men or women who do, give this app a try as well.

There are so many tech trends that influence our lives and dating is no exception. Once you find the right app for you though, everything becomes that much easier. Now get out there and put them to the test!