For some of us in the wild world of singledom, it’s been a long year of dating. The yellow borders of Bumble have started to feel like something out of The Yellow Wallpaper. Hinge’s goofy prompts have become de rigueur. And when does the swiping stop on Tinder?
If you’re like me, you may be looking to change up how you date in 2023. So why not start the new year off with a new app? Here are a few I’ve come across that I find particularly intriguing.
Tired of swiping left and right yourself and wishing someone would just pick a great date for you? Or no longer trusting your dating instincts? Wingman may be the alternative dating platform for you. For this app, you hand over the selection keys to your pal, who sets up your profile and plays Cupid for you, setting up introductions between you and potential dates.
A similar concept is behind Wingr. Launched in Houston just this year, the app facilitates connections with the help of family or friends. There’s also a “set the mood” feature for conversations between matches to help make sure everyone’s vibing.
Dream of dating a top-tier Instagram influencer or celebrity? Give Raya a try. The exclusive dating app launched in 2015 and has become a courtship convening ground for the likes of High School Musical heartthrob Zac Efron, Grammy Award-winner Lizzo and rocker John Mayer, to name a few. But cachet and cool alone are not enough to get on the extremely private, invite-only app. Only 8% of applicants are accepted, according to The New York Times, making it harder to get into than Harvard Business School. Good luck with that application.
While Raya has built its brand on exclusivity, Feeld, better known as “the app for threesomes,” bills itself as an “inclusive” and “open-minded” dating app for solo singles and paired-up couples “to find lovers and friends.” Users can choose from over 20 sexual and gender identities and indicate preferences from across the kink spectrum—from BDSM to three-ways. This app may feel like foreign ground for monogamously minded daters with vanilla sexual tastes, but for others, the option to explore unconventional dating and relationship styles may be enticing.
Can AI predict attraction? Iris Dating thinks so. The AI-driven dating app uses its “AttractionDNA system” to learn “which visual features users find most physically attractive and delivers better matches over time,” according to a press release. Those who sign up train the AI by selecting “like,” “pass” or “maybe” on a series of stock photos of men or women depending on your preference, and then Iris offers matches based on the looks you find appealing.
Some believe love is written in the stars, but what if your DNA markers hold the key to romantic chemistry? Taking a very novel and scientific approach to matchmaking, Vancouver-based DNA Romance is betting that compatibility is woven into your genes—and your Myers-Briggs personality type. If you’ve already swabbed a sample for a genetic testing company such as 23andMe or Ancestry, you can share it with DNA Romance or order a DNA testing kit from the app to find potential matches. The service also “forecasts personality compatibility” based on Myers-Briggs personality types and offers a free personality quiz to help you get started.
While sharing your DNA with a third party may make some squeamish, tech-oriented San Francisco is among the top 24 cities with users of the dating platform, according to DNA Romance’s site, which also promises to keep your personal data secure and never sell your DNA to another company. (At least that’s what it says in its FAQ.) So the question now becomes, would you give up your DNA for love?
Christina Campodonico can be reached at [email protected]