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And maybe, just maybe, you'd like them to value education, be polished enough to at least look good in black-and-white photos or be adorably awkward on a 3-minute video date and have a strong enough command of grammar that they know not to end sentences with a preposition. While your mother may call you picky, we call you self-aware. The League, a community deed for the overly ambitious.

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We hear this all the time in our therapy practice. You can only date as who you are, and while some measure of primping and putting on your best face is part of the game, at some point in the process, who you are, including your vulnerabilities and limitations, is going to come through. Believe it or not, that can be some of the most wonderful parts of dating, but also pretty terrifying.

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Lumen is the dating app deed for overs.

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Tinder is where you are most likely to find anyone and everyone in your local area: the person you see on the train platform each morning who you swear wears a wedding ring; the primary-school friend you lost touch with 15 years ago; your boss; or maybe your ex. When it comes to same-sex matches, either person can make the first move. Who will I meet?

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All you need to do is some ideally well-lit photos. With Soulmates flaunting marriages on its homethis app is one for those who are in it for the long haul. Word of warning Despite taking the lofty position of promising a platform for relationships rather than encounters, Bumble still exists for the same purpose, no matter what your matches may tell you.

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Tinder, Bumble and Hinge are generally targeted at to year-olds. The most popular and enduring of the first wave of dating apps, Tinder was founded in as a way to help US students meet each other ; in other words, a social network for friendship as well as dating.

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Use it if you are looking for … flirtatious texting. Here is where things get a little strange.

Word of warning Facebook Dating launched recently in the US. Use it if you are looking for … a partner for a single parent, or love later in life. But how do we navigate the glut of options available to help us find love? The interface is minimal but clunky — deed for the least tech-savvy Boomers — and has few market rivals.

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If they had used Hinge, they might never have found their way to each other again. Mon 2 Dec Reuse this content. What is it for?

Anyone within a 1km radius, from colleagues to commuters and — God forbid — family members. And it is free to start. The app removes any frivolous pre-date agonising from the equation and has been serving all manner of location-based meetings since its launch in From the curious to the adventurous, all are welcome. Millions of people look for love online, but it can be hard to know where to start. Basically, a meet-cute for the socially anxious.

You have to delete your profile as well as the app to be fully off-grid. The diverse range of single Guardian readers and maybe even some journos.

In theory, you or someone you know should be friends with your match. Use it if you are looking for … the one or are ready to settle for less.

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This is a website and an app, so you can use your desktop to register your profile, images and personal details, then message away with other singles in your area. Eighty per cent of users are Guardian readers, so your political opinions and environmental consciousness will probably be reciprocated.

The dating game takes to the field

Then, rather than approach them on the street, you strike up a digital conversation, where you painstakingly recount your non-encounter in the hope that they will agree to a planned meet. Again, users swipe left or right depending on their preference and the requirements for ing up are minimal: images, your name and your age. With about 25 million people in the US alone thought to have regularly used dating apps this year, the sea is stocked with fish aplenty — so should we Bumble, Tinder, Happn or perhaps Grindr our way to success?

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Late bloomers, divorcees and basically any singleton over 50 with functioning knowledge of a smartphone. You need to be on the app all the time.

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Ammar Kalia. Every time you see someone who catches your eye, you check the app to see if they are also on it.

Newly single? a beginner’s guide to the best dating apps

There is no swiping — instead, users have to answer an array of questions that are posted on their profilealong with their again ideally well-lit images. Use it if you are looking for … a story to sell to a gossip magazine. Use it if you are looking for … someone to gaze at over your morning copy of the Guardian, of course. Things get even stranger here. How do I use it?

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Perhaps as a result of all of this, STI rates among overs doubled between and Founded in SeptemberLumen reachedusers in just six months with its canny reinterpretation of the swiping format. The ultimate, utilitarian ideal of the dating app world.

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Online dating. Composite: Getty Images.

Use it if you are looking for … a late-night rendezvous. Newly single? Word of warning You are likely to bump into your matches again, so it may be harder to live down embarrassing first dates. Billed as the female-friendly version of Tinder, Bumble is very similar except for the fact that only women can start the conversation.

What is it?

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Should you Bumble, Tinder, Happn or Grindr your way to success? McLeod and his wife met in college, broke up and spent eight years apart before Copaken encouraged him to take action before it was too late.