Using Emoticons In Dating Is Complicated

A guide to smileys for men who don't want to scare women


by Sophie Wilkinson |
Published on

We’re trying to seduce you.






Um… hello? Are you there? No? That’s because it’s been scientifically proven that women don’t like it when men try to woo them using little smiley text faces.

According to online dating site Zoosk – no, us neither – men who put ‘:)’ into their profiles or messages get 6% fewer incoming messages and 12% fewer responses as those who don’t. Maybe it’s because women are always looking for bad guys and can’t bear the idea of a smiley, happy-clappy guy. Or perhaps women are fed up of men attempting to come across as jovial, upbeat sorts, when actually the smileys just seem a bit forced, like a pally work email you get from someone you don’t really like.

Regardless, we don’t think that letters and punctuation should be limited to traditional prose, and there really is a benefit to using emoticons, especially when you’re typing away on a device with – shock, horror – no emoji capabilities. So, guys, here’s a guide on how to do emoticons in a way that will get you the girl.

    A lot of women don’t like the fact men can be a bit full-on on dating sites, so show that you’re chilled out and not too creepy with this little guy:


      It’s assumed that men using online dating will go for anything with a pulse, so prove that you’re not a rabid keyboard humper by expressing your disdain every time the woman you’re chatting to does anything remotely gross.


        Don’t give away too much emotion by deliberately conflating two emotions which are rarely felt together and putting them into one emoticon at the same time. If you’re smiling and crying at the same time, you’re actually putting up quite the defence, because the recipient will have no idea what you actually mean.


          Emoticons don’t cost anything, and considering they’re basically abbreviations of words describing how you feel, you’re already keeping your character limit economical, so be kind and giving, with roses: @>--;-- and drinks >---l

            And if you really need to get across that you’re a happy, jovial, fun guy, then at least make yourself a cool, happy, jovial fun guy by adding a snapback to your smiley emoticon.


            Follow Sophie on Twitter @sophwilkinosn

            This article originally appeared on The Debrief.

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