Hinge Review 2024 – An In-Depth Profile of the Hinge Dating App

hinge review

Hinge has been called everything from “female-friendly” to “millennial-friendly” to “the best app for a one-night stand.”

But what is dating on Hinge actually like? In this Hinge review, we’re going to give you the real scoop on the “app designed to be deleted.”

It may be the third most popular dating app in the world, but is Hinge right for you?

Let’s start with a rundown of what Hinge can do for you.

Hinge Review in 10 Seconds

  • Hinge is a matchmaking app – not just random profile swiping
  • The matchmaking system is based on a Nobel Prize-winning algorithm
  • Hinge is designed to get you off the market!
  • A Hinge account is free
  • Choose your own relationship goals
  • You can filter out right and wrong types
  • Many members are millennials/zillennials
  • A phone-friendly app – not much use for desktop/laptop users

Who is Hinge For and Not For?

Hinge has the reputation of being millennial and zillennial-friendly, and with good reason.

The dating app not only has many younger singles but is also LGBTQ-friendly, non-monogamy friendly, and has a fun and social media-style approach to online dating.

What We Like and Don’t Like on Hinge

Pros

  • Advanced matchmaking algorithm
  • Casually hook up or find a serious relationship
  • Video chat with prompts
  • Moderated profiles
  • Video verification
  • Voice prompts as icebreakers
  • LGBTQ friendly
  • 23 million members
  • Matches never expire

Cons

  • The best matches are for premium users only
  • It’s not exactly made for over 50 users
  • Free users only get 8 likes a day
  • Free users can only interact with their matches

Where Did Hinge Come From?

The Hinge startup was founded in 2011 and was originally called “Secret Agent Cupid.” The original desktop program allowed Facebook users to connect to the app and reveal which of their friends they had secret crushes on.

Within a year, however, the desktop program switched to a mobile app and was renamed Hinge. The intent was transparent – whereas Tinder was random and about finding local hookups, Hinge was supposed to be more personality based.

It was envisioned as a “relationship dating app.”

The company struggled through 2017 until it finally received favorable mention in The New York Times. By late 2017, the successful startup partnered with Match Group (the same Match Group that owns Hinge and most other dating apps like Match.com and Tinder).

U.S. presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg also gave the dating app some much-needed publicity when he said he met his future husband on Hinge. This was also about the time the Hinge team made some upgrades to the matchmaking algorithm.

By 2023, Hinge had over 23 million users and was the third most popular dating app in the world.

Design of the Hinge Dating App

The Hinge app has a fairly simple interface that’s definitely mobile-friendly and meant for viewing on a mobile device. You can’t even access the app on a desktop or laptop.

The layout is also simple, with two sets of menus on the top and bottom of the screen. The bottom of the screen has Hinge Discover Page (for finding potential matches), Standout Matches (for people most your type), Who Liked You, Regular Matches, and Your Dating Profile.

T top of the menu lets you sort new matches by total Compatibility, Who’s Active Today, Who’s Nearby, and Who’s New Here.

You will also notice that some of Hinge’s best features are limited until you upload several photos of yourself, along with a verification selfie, if possible.

Hinge Dating App Review – A Step-By-Step Guide

Hinge is easy to download and install and does not require payment if you’re using the free version. Here is the process, step by step.

Signing Up with Hinge

To sign up with Hinge, provide an email address or use your Google or Facebook account to sign in automatically.

hinge sign up

Users will need phone numbers to use Hinge so that a free account can be validated. The Hinge app also asks to verify your email address if you don’t want to use a Google/Facebook sign-in.

The free version lets you create a dating profile, upload photos – and surprise!

You can even see your first matches all for free.

Creating a Hinge Profile

In order to completely open Hinge’s free features, you must first create a profile, upload photos and also upload a video selfie of yourself as proof of identity.

hinge profile

You can use Hinge and skip all these steps, but you won’t be able to see very much in the way of matches.

When creating dating profiles, in addition to uploading six photos or videos, you can also fill out some creative Hinge prompts. Writing prompts are icebreaker questions that your matches can “like” and comment on to start a conversation.

Icebreakers could be something like “The way to win me over is…” or “My most irrational fear is…” and so on.

There are also categories of an opening line prompt, such as Self-Care topics, Chat ideas, Getting Personal, Storytime, My Type of Date, Vibes, and Voice-First.

You can choose whether you want this information listed publicly on your profile or hidden and just for the matchmakers’ interest.

Other Prompts

hinge signupIn addition to text, you can create video or voice-first prompts as an icebreaker. For example, “My Review Of…”, “Something That’s Special to Me…” or “A Daily Essential.”

There’s even a Prompt Poll if you want to get a lot of people to comment and vote on a topic that’s important to you.

Vitals

The Vitals area lets you add personal details about yourself, such as body type, name, gender, sexuality, age, location, and other criteria for online dating.

In addition to major vitals, there is a section for sharing information about your pets, your Zodiac sign, work virtues, where you grew up, and even a section for your “vices,” like alcohol, drugs, smoking, and so forth.

hinge datingYou can also state your “Dating Intentions”, whether you want a casual hookup (one-night stand) or a long term relationship. There are also some “in-between” options like open to short or open to long.

This is the section where you can also state if you’re monogamous or non-monogamous.

Link your Instagram social media account at the bottom of the page. At the top of the section, you’ll notice there’s a tab for Edit or View, so you can get an idea of what your dates see when they come across your Hinge profile.

Defining Dating Preferences

While the Vitals section is made for people to filter in and out their type, the Dating Preferences section is for you to filter in and out your type.

Here, you can select “deal breakers” like gender, location, age range, ethnicity, religion, body type, and even more open-ended categories like politics.

Hinge Account Settings

The account settings area lets users pause their profile from being shown to new users, or hide their “Last Active” status. This is also the section to click if you need any technical help with your profile.

hinge account

What Works

If you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed at using the Hinge app, fear not! The dating experts at Hinge have provided a whole section devoted to telling new members “What Works” and what habits get the most responses.

Dating experts provide tips on choosing the best photos, expressing your personality through prompts, matching, and starting conversations.

Hinge Compatible Matches

Hinge is built upon icebreakers and conversation starters. Unlike other dating apps, which really leave users out in the cold, Hinge warms you up. It gets the party started and gets people talking, thinking, and sharing viewpoints, social media style.

hinge reviews

The typical profile starts with a single photo of relevant information and a few icebreaker prompts. If you like what you see, you can “like” any section of the profile, from photos to icebreaker answers to even a poll the person has shared.

More photos are down below. Unlike dating apps such as Tinder, Hinge is not a fast-swiping dating app. It takes a while to scroll down and read all the potential match’s information and to see every last photo.

At any point, you can hit the X button to reject the person. This information is retained and will be used to create better matches for you in the future.

Other Matches

If you are less interested in compatible matches, you can also look for matches that were just active “Today”, New to Hinge, or “Nearby.”

There’s no real purpose to these other categories unless, of course, you want to venture out from Hinge’s “Best Matches” and see whoever else is up for a random date.

The “Standouts” section is Hinge’s official “best match for you,” but that’s not necessarily the date that is going to like you the most. The “Likes You” section is a better bet for getting a mutual match.

Once you get a mutual match, your “Connection” appears in the “Matches” tab, along with the chat transcript.

Mutual matches are not deleted after a period of time, as with Bumble. It’s reassuring to know the mutual match and chat will always stay there unless you delete it later on.

Learning the Hinge Algorithm

Much has been written about how Hinge works with its algorithm, but not everyone understands how the system makes matches.

Understand that before it was known as the Hinge dating app, the company introduced the app as a complement to Facebook. As the company grew, the app’s matchmaking system started to become more complex.

hinge matching

As you might have heard, Hinge’s system is loosely based on the Nobel prize-winning Gale-Shapley algorithm. It’s not only matching your preferences and interests with potential dates, but also shows you the people most likely to “mutually match you back.”

Your “type” might not be his or her “type.” That’s why the Gale-Shapley algorithm focuses on matching you with people more likely to like you back.

However, that’s not where it ends. Hinge also determines compatibility based on your user actions while using the dating app.

The system keeps track of your likes and dislikes, dealbreakers, who you leave comments for, preferences, and which profiles you spend the most time reviewing. The more you use Hinge, naturally, the better your matches get.

It’s a combination of science-based matching, the study of user habits, and of course, whatever is nearby and realistic to your dating situation.

hinge reviewd

Hinge Reviews – The Conspiracy Behind Hinge Matches

There’s another factor to consider with Hinge matches. That is, though the Hinge free version is fun to use, the app shows preferential treatment to those with a preferred membership.

A free member will always find their matches limited, either by profile moderation or even by the dating app “hiding” your profile for various reasons.

Some of the reasons why your profile will not be seen as much include:

  • The system won’t bother showing your profile to wrong matches
  • You won’t be shown matches of interest – just what you’ve already shown interest in
  • If you’ve been X-d a number of times it works against you
  • You are being filtered out by filtered searches
  • You’re not using the app enough – or are using it too much
  • Quality of photos and bio
  • Mixed signals you’re giving to the app
  • New members get better matches
  • New photos get a boost
  • There are no new members that are “more of the same”
  • You’re not communicating well with mutual matches
  • You’re not as good-looking as other local members
  • You’ve run out of daily likes
  • There are no good “serious relationships” matches for you

Of course, some of these criticisms are from Hinge users themselves, not from the company officially. But that’s hard to prove one way or the other. Companies protect their algorithm methods like original recipes!

The truth is everyone using a dating app would like to think they are very attractive and “everybody’s type”, even though, in many cases, that’s not true. People have very specific tastes when looking for a fling or a serious relationship.

Sometimes you have to respect that some dates are just not that into you.

Finally, there’s also the possibility that people are becoming addicted to dating life “swiping.” Namely, the online dating culture, which might be counterproductive to finding a healthy relationship.

The Benefit of Hinge Preferred Membership

Of course, if that sounds unfair to you, there’s an easy way around that.

hinge benefits

Becoming a premium Hinge member bypasses all the matchmaking eccentricities of Hinge. Your profile gets boosted over other members, you get to see more matches and better quality matches, and you get a better overall Hinge experience.

“Hinge Boosts” show your profile to 11 times more people for one hour.

“Hinge Plus” not only boosts you above other profiles but also shows you who liked you.

“Hinge X” gives you the most compatible match, gets you recommended sooner and faster, and highlights bring your likes above everyone else.

That’s right, Hinge X is basically the only way to get access to those amazing dates that are, well, worth paying for.

Paying for Hinge gets you twice as many dates as the free version of Hinge. It’s a smart strategy, considering over one million people use a premium version of Hinge.

On the other hand, most Hinge users have no idea why their dating experiences on Hinge are oftentimes not up to par. They’re not getting the best matches!

Hinge Virtual Date

After you start chatting with your mutual match, you can select the “Hinge video chat” option or “Hinge virtual date” option when it appears.

Hinge video chat is basic cam-to-cam chat, though the Hinge Virtual Date or “Date From Home” option lets you formalize the event.

Hinge video chat also comes with icebreaker prompts, but most Hinge users say they have more fun just chatting, giving each other house tours, trading recipes, and discussing their day-to-day lives.

Still, Hinge’s virtual date and video chat are one of the best reasons to use Hinge, as it lets you test meaningful connections with someone before investing more time and money.

Video chat is also a deterrent against catfishers, spammers, and scammers.

How Much Does Hinge Cost?

The Hinge cost raises your brows at first, but bear in mind that a Hinge subscription remains competitive with most other apps, such as eHarmony and Ashley Madison.

Hinge Plus Premium Subscription

  • $14.99 for 1 week
  • $29.99 for 1 month
  • $19.99 a month for 3 months
  • $14.99 for 6 months

Hinge X Premium Subscription

  • $24.99 for 1 week
  • $49.99 for 1 month
  • $33.33 a month for 3 months
  • $24.99 for 6 months

The main difference between the two plans is that Hinge X gives you enhanced recommendations (the best quality matches), profile boosts, and priority likes above other Hinge users.

Hinge Plus just gives you premium features with unlimited use of the free version, including perks like:

  • Seeing who liked you
  • Filtered search options
  • More ways to connect with matches (such as changing location or common interests
  • Unlimited likes

Hinge Boosts costs about $9.99 per profile boost for one hour and may be cheaper if you just want to test the waters once.

Hinge Alternatives

How do other apps compare to Hinge? Consider five of Hinge’s top competitors, which also happen to be some of the best dating sites

eHarmony

eharmony logoeHarmony is Hinge’s best competitor in terms of intelligent matchmaking. Whereas Hinge’s algorithm is user-defined and based on modern concepts of matchmaking, eHarmony goes the more traditional route.

Marriages last that have shared values between both partners. That’s why eHarmony’s questionnaire gets to the bottom of what motivates you and pairs you with the most supportive partner who understands.

  • eHarmony and Hinge both have video chat
  • eHarmony has longer-term contracts
  • eHarmony is more marriage-oriented
  • Hinge is better for casual hookups
  • Hinge has a better free version

Tinder

tinder online dating appTinder is the anti-smart matchmaking app! Though its creators assure us there’s a serious algorithm at work, most dating experts and free users agree, Tinder is just about random sex.

There’s not much hope for real relationships, except if you have similar tagged interests. But Tinder is more to the point. Good photos, funny bio, hopefully, a date…and once in a great while, a successful one-night stand. 

  • Tinder and Hinge are both good for casual sex
  • Tinder is more concerned with location and who’s nearby
  • Tinder has many fake accounts
  • Hinge is better moderated
  • Hinge is much better with icebreakers

Ashley Madison

Madison Ashley logoAshley Madison is more of a traditional dating site (including desktop and laptop as well as most dating apps) with one specific niche: married dating is A-OK!

Of all the dating sites, Ashley Madison has the most notorious reputation for one-night stands, cheating, swinging, polyamory, and basically anything but traditional matchmaking. It’s a lot more secretive than Hinge, though it’s not as youth-friendly.

  • Ashley Madison and Hinge both let you pick short-term, casual, hookup & ONS
  • Ashley Madison is better for anonymous communication
  • Ashley Madison offers free membership for women
  • Hinge has video chat
  • Hinge profiles are younger and more female/male balanced

Read this detailed Ashley Madison review to understand some of the apps’ major differences.

Victoria Milan

victoria milanLike Ashley Madison, Victoria Milan is all about the “affair” – the more discreet, anonymous, and bigger one-night mistake it is, the better! The site offers premium features like filtered searching, unlimited messaging, and private photos.

Victoria Milan also offers online photo editing so users can blur out their faces for public profiles – a must if you’re talking about married dating!

  • Victoria Milan and Hinge are both open to non-monogamous relationships
  • Victoria Milan has onsite photo editing tools to mask public photos
  • Victoria Milan charges a monthly membership fee for all features
  • Hinge has a free version
  • Hinge has many more users

ALSO READ OUR IN-DEPTH VICTORIAMILAN REVIEW.

CoffeeMeetsBagel

coffee meets bagelCoffee Meets Bagel is similar to Hinge because of its advanced matchmaking approach. But whereas Hinge is based on mutual matches, Coffee Meets Bagel is more concerned with “deal breakers” and filtering out everyone who is not a good match.

That means you will never see some users again if you’re very specific in your criteria. CMB also matches men and women differently, giving women a curated list of men already interested in them.

  • CMB and Hinge both offer limited use to free members
  • CMB works by filtering out the wrong matches for you
  • CMB doesn’t have endless scrolling – just the most compatible match
  • Hinge lets you see good matches and “OK” or “not so good” matches
  • Hinge users tend to be younger

Hinge Review FAQs

Still have questions about Hinge not covered in our app review? Let’s answer them now!

Why am I not getting better matches with Hinge?

Getting better matches with Hinge is a learning process.

For starters, Hinge requires you to fill out a good-quality profile before it starts circulating your profile. While you can skip Hinge prompts to start browsing singles, it’s not going to be very productive if you have a blank profile!

Hinge delivers the best potential matches to preferred members, who pay for Hinge premium membership plans like X or Plus. 

What is a rose on dating apps like Hinge?

A “rose” on dating apps like Hinge is just a special way to let someone know you like their profile.

It’s Hinge’s version of a “Super-Like,” and you get one free rose a week on the free version.

Does Hinge have any fake accounts?

While some users may create fake Hinge accounts, the site does moderate all new members and “shadowbans” low-quality profiles.

What does a Hinge paid subscription get you?

Hinge Preferred members of Hinge (paid subscriptions for X or Plus) can enjoy:

  • Unlimited swipes
  • More filters
  • Better quality matches
  • Boosted profiles

The Hinge premium worth is substantial IF you are picky about relationships or have long-term dating goals in mind. Meaning Hinge Free Version may be fine for casual hookups.

Is the Hinge app completely free?

The Hinge app is free in that you will never be charged for basic services.

However, it’s not completely free in terms of enjoying all the features.

Most apps today offer free basic mutual matches with text chat. Premium membership offers special perks, such as unlimited likes and seeing who likes you.

Hinge Review – The Best Online Dating Experience for Your Personal Journey

You could say that Hinge is the best dating app because it works with your wants and desires rather than trying to steer you in another direction.

It’s not an app that limits your selection, censoring bad matches like Coffee Meets Bagel. It’s not an app that forces you to take relationships seriously like eHarmony.

But it’s a much brainier app than popular dating apps like Tinder and Bumble, which are mostly about finding who’s nearby. Hinge really does help you find a partner with whom you can explore a stronger emotional connection.

What you do with that match afterward is your decision.

No wonder it’s the choice of many women, young millennials, and millennials who understand that relationships are complicated.

We’re all just chasing what we want, and Hinge is the best app to help you realize your relationship goals – however lofty, respectable, or naughty they might be.

ALSO READ:

    • Meet the unrivaled master of all things dating. With a charisma that could rival Iggy Pop himself, this Iggy rocks so hard he will knock your socks off — unless, of course, you have a peculiar penchant for sockless adventures. But fear not, for Iggy has standards that even the boldest adventurers must adhere to. […]

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