Social media is tough. Not only are we contending with all the pressures of celebs, a-type influencers, and our old friends from high school (who are all wildly more successful than us), but we’re also dealing with our own online image.
Since so much of what we do takes place online now, it’s no surprise that the emphasis is greater now for us and our online lives. Everything from shopping to coffee dates can happen online. We can video chat with our crush without even leaving our bed!
While it seems like a little too much integration when we think about it like this, trust us when we say it’s actually a benefit and boon for those in the dating pool. Online personalities can help us get an idea of what a potential partner is like.
The red flags on a potential bae’s social media shouldn’t be ignored, as every one of our articles says. However, do we know what the red flags in our own profiles are?
We’ve gone through and found 20 common red flags that we don’t even realize we do, even though they yell loud and clear to all those potential partners who might be orbiting our lives. Take a look and let’s see how our own profiles measure up!
20 We Don’t Follow Them Back
Okay, real talk, anyone who’s overly concerned with follower counts needs to put the phone down (unless it’s literally their job). Sweety High mentions this red flag, which we didn’t even realize read as such. According to them, some guys think that, if they follow us but we don’t follow them back, that’s a red flag.
When we think about it, yeah, maybe it is. We follow the people we want to get to know, right? Make sure to follow him back if you want to keep this red flag at bay. That sends the message that we’re definitely interested!
19 Posting (Be It Photos Or Statuses) Is A 24/7 Job
Whether our social media of choice is wordy or picture perfect, everyone needs a little healthy distance between their posts. Unless we’re a social media influencer, posting on our social media is likely not our full time or part-time work. Sweety High’s list of red flags includes this point, which a lot of other articles back up as well.
Posting many times a day is seen as a bit of a red flag; it tends to show that we’re really attached to our phone and social media. Which, you know, isn’t wrong. But it’s not necessarily the best habit for building new, real-life connections.
18 There Are Recent Photos With A Supposed Ex
Sometimes we don’t have the time or the energy to comb through our profiles and remove all traces of an ex. It’s understandable, especially if we’re people who post a lot. Those of us who put up legions of photos will inevitably miss a picture or two that features a sunset, an ex, or even just a romantic anniversary caption.
Dialed In reminds us that any semi-recent photos might raise a red flag in a potential partner. He might start wondering why we kept the photo up, or misread it as being recent enough to still be in the relationship! Both of those are not ideal options in the dating world.
17 Our About Me Or Bio Is Emoji After Emoji After Emoji
Emojis are cute, but only when sprinkled calmly and selectively. After all, they’re really meant for conveying emotions and feelings, though many of us get caught in loving just how cute and fun those little pictures can be. If our bio or “About Me” is heavier on the emojis than the actual words, it can often be read as a red flag.
We’ve found that it might show a preoccupation with perception, or just come off as too cutesy when talking to a more serious guy. Don’t ever stop being yourself, but maybe look into replacing all those octopus emojis with some actual words.
16 That Little Phrase ‘Looking For Friends’
Here’s something that brings much contention with it. The phrase “looking for friends” is on many a profile. After all, isn’t it what most of us are looking for? More really good friends? It can be so difficult to meet people nowadays, especially after graduating from school and landing a comfortable job.
Bustle reminds us that by putting it on our profile, it might come across as a red flag to guys, regardless of what they’re looking for. “Looking for friends” can read to some people as “I just want someone to talk to, and might never want to meet up in real life.” That’s not necessarily everyone’s ideal.
15 ‘Just Ask Me’ Is Also A Red Flag Phrase To Many Men
Bustle really says it best when they explain this red flag. Bustle’s expert writes, “this person will be [bad] at conversation, I can guarantee it," which may or may not be true. After all, sometimes we really do feel too complex to list out in a bio. It tends to read, however, as a request for the other person to do all the work.
If we’re not going to offer anything to spark a conversation, some people decide that it’s not worth struggling to find a mutual topic of interest. We definitely don’t think that we should put all our info out there, but giving a little here and there isn’t a bad idea.
14 More Song Lyrics Than Original Ideas
This is one red flag that comes from more personal experience than anything else. After a certain point in any relationship, we inevitably get curious about our partner’s exes. For us, that tends to manifest as asking about pet peeves or habits that exes had. One of the most interesting things our (now ex) partner said?
“Song lyrics as captions, especially when there’s nothing original anywhere else on their profile.” Essentially it made them feel like they were dating Sia or Beyonce rather than their partner. Hey, we wouldn’t complain if Beyonce showed up instead of our partner, but we understand that it doesn’t convey our personality in the same way.
13 Flirtatious Comments On Many People’s Photos
We can all agree that this is a red flag, no matter where on the spectrum we fall. Anyone who’s been interested in someone has probably searched for this flag as part of that vetting process. No matter who you ask, inevitably they’ll say that a plethora of flirty comments comes across as a red flag when someone is interested in us.
There’s nothing wrong with showing support, but anything that’s openly showing romantic interest can make a potential partner feel like one of a million, rather than one in a million. We know we’ve felt the same way before!
12 Or Posting Things That Are Too Revealing (Physically AND Emotionally!)
We’re loving all the openness surrounding mental health and support. It’s so necessary to talk about both physical health and mental health challenges, and social media is a great way to garner community support. However, there’s a difference between discussing our triumphs and challenges and complaining. Those that take the complaint route run the risk of being read as too much of an open book.
Bustle reminds us that this might be a red flag for those who tend to want to keep drama on the DL, rather than sharing every stubbed toe, couple’s spat, and traffic cut off with their followers.
11 Our Feed Is Selfie City
We love a good selfie, and totally agree that selfies are a great exercise in self-love and self-celebration. Sweety High mentions that a feed full of selfies can sometimes come across as a heavy self-interest rather than exuding those “feeling ourself” vibes. A few selfies scattered throughout is great and can show off some of our best angles (always a great thing for potential partners to see).
But rows and rows of blurry selfies taken at the same angle is a recipe for tedium. Break up that feed with a flat lay or a landscape shot! It’ll make it feel more like a slice of our life, rather than a photo album.
10 Or It’s A Sea Of Party Snapshots And Messy Pictures
The other thing that feeds tend to be full of? Party snapshots and messy photos celebrating birthdays, concerts, and nights out with friends. Let us be clear: there’s nothing wrong with celebrating these things, but they do portray a very specific vibe. That vibe being, “I like to go out and get a little wild.”
Sweety High reminds us to always keep a well-balanced profile. Too many party photos, too many selfies, and generally too many of one kind of photo can make us come across as one-dimensional; a red flag for most serial scrollers. After all, we’re complex, thoughtful people! Our profiles should reflect that.
9 Every Other Status Is Being Upset Or Angry
This isn’t necessarily our favorite kind of status to write, but we definitely have to admit that we’re guilty of a harshly worded status every now and then. Anger or upset feelings need to be let out, but putting them on the internet is kind of risky business.
Dialed In reminds us that negative feelings on our profiles can inadvertently make people associate negativity with our name and face. Plus, we all get a little annoyed at the person who complains a bunch, right? Negativity can be tiring, both for the complainer and the listener (or reader). Try and add some positivity and celebration to balance it out.
8 Awkward Cropping Or Too Many Girls Night Out Group Selfies
This is a little rarer in the world of social media profiles. After all, who doesn’t love taking a selfie when the lighting is just right? However, it’s a sign that we just want to mention in case anyone has to deal with it. Bustle reminds us that a feed full of awkwardly cropped profiles or exclusively group photos can spark some questions in a guy’s mind.
He might wonder whose arm seems to be around your shoulder. Or he might wonder why you posted about celebratory drinks four nights in a row. Just like anything on our accounts, try varying the kinds of photos you’re posting for the most variety in a feed.
7 Talking About Likes And Follower Numbers
Real talk: there’s nothing to be embarrassed about when we’re disappointed our photo doesn’t get as many likes as we thought it would. We all want to be the person with the amazing feed, and sometimes a picture we’re proud of just doesn’t garner the attention we hoped it would.
If we’re overly concerned with likes and follower numbers, however, we might find that we’re stuck in a cycle of getting stressed about things we can’t control. And stress isn’t a great look on anyone since it makes us just feel gross! He might take it as a red flag as well, thinking about how he might be put to work as an impromptu photographer.
6 We ‘Show Off’ Or Brag About Too Many Things
This isn’t a red flag that just appears on our social media profiles. We’ve seen this red flag come up in a variety of guys’ profiles too, and we can confidently say we’re not here for it. Sweety High backs us up on this one too! They talk about how showing off cars, watches, and even vacations too often can read as being materialistic or too show-offy.
Celebrate the good things in life, but don’t get too focused on having the biggest and best stuff; at the end of the day our smile lights up a social media profile more than a watch or convertible does!
5 Keeping Things Too Positive
Everyone loves a positive person, right? Actually, that might not be the case. While some people with fall head over heels for your radiant positivity and happy glow, other folks can get a little irked by that immovable smile. It’s the whole idea of too much of a good thing, you know?
Some guys don’t want a ray of sunshine, as they might have a stormier view of the world. That’s totally fair. We personally don’t think that you need to change anything about your profile if it’s full of good thoughts and gratitude; just know that some people don’t necessarily go in for the sunshine.
4 Or Too Single-Minded
This is another red flag that won’t read as a red flag to everyone. Bustle reminds us that our social media profiles are kind of an extension of ourselves. Sure, they’re a cultivated display of our personality, but they’re still a display of who we are. This means that, if our feed is full of a single kind of interest, we might only attract those folks who also have that similar interest.
Other folks might read it as a red flag, especially if they’re not as into bikes, pottery, cooking, or dogs as we are. And hey, totally fair! We wouldn’t want to date someone who isn’t into dogs anyway.
3 Comments All Come From The Same Couple People, Typically Guys
When someone is checking out a social media profile, it’s no surprise that they’re going to comb through all the comments as well. After all, we’ve been known to do that on occasion. A red flag might spark if they find that most of the comments on our photos come from the same handful of guys again and again.
Some guys might read it as competition, even if they’re just your good friends. Other guys might also suspect that we’re in a relationship with one of them, which is a major red flag when it comes to reaching out and asking for a date!
2 Long Lists Of What We’re NOT Interested In
Negativity? No thanks! While a few well-intentioned complaints are valid, especially if they’re pointing out injustice in the world, laundry lists of dealbreakers aren’t going to read well on any kind of social media. Bustle mentions this specifically in connection with online dating profiles, but we think it’s pretty universal.
Keeping our minds open to different kinds of guys means that we’ll have more options, and ultimately a higher likelihood of finding our perfect person. Posting all our dealbreakers on our profile could drive away those guys that might be more worried about disappointing us. Not to mention the fact that it might send away our perfect partner who has one minor dealbreaker!
1 None Of Our Photos Feature Us Smiling
Yeah, we know that a moody pout looks way better in a stylish selfie than a goofy grin does. We’re guilty of keeping smiling to a minimum on our social media profile too, just for the aesthetic of it all. Unfortunately, not being able to find any sign of happiness on our social media profile is a red flag, according to Bustle.
A smile is inviting, warm, and can make someone’s day instantly better. Make sure to have at least one or two happy memories captured in your profile feed, even if they don’t strictly adhere to your aesthetic; the benefits will be huge, and you might even find yourself smiling IRL too!
Sources: Bustle, Sweety High