Many online dating articles and products will try to convince you that what you write for your first message is the most important skill you will ever learn. For sure, what you write in your opening message and in your profile will dictate a lot of your success with online dating, but the single biggest factor is how someone responds to your profile picture. While your opening message’s content will determine if someone clicks through to your profile, it’s that little thumbnail image that will determine if they open the message at all.
With regards to messaging men, don’t be overly flirtatious as that can immediately set off their BS detector. “I don’t want smokers” “If you were born after 1970, scoot” “Get out of here, trolls” and so on make you sound like the lady who sits at her window just to wave angrily at anything--fly or child or cat--that touches her grass. Most dating sites already ask your age, if you’ve been married, have kids, etc., but a line or two devoted to a big and significant chunk of your life is good. Some prefer potential dates to be in a certain area. Borrow your (former) work address’s postal code--you’d meet there in the city at first anyway! And speaking of casting a wide net, it helps to boost how approachable you are if you’re not too particular about little things. Most ARE hooked by photos, and then are either turned off or completely reeled in with the well-done profile. Let your photos also testify on who you are and what you’re like. Be interesting and be mindful of location’s importance. Many depicting you in your natural environment, with your dog or cat, snuggling with a book, or digging with the grandbabies in your garden. Feel it from the inside and you’ll be able to show it outwardly, what a catch you are. Write your profile like it’s a resume, except your boss is a potential date or life mate instead. Ask your closest friends to enumerate your good and bad points and use what they tell you. Instead of saying you love travelling, include a short anecdote about that time you got expelled from a temple islet in Bali.