When it comes to online dating, your profile picture is the first thing potential dates will judge. A new study suggests that a quick way to increase your chances of online dating success is to strike a confident pose in your photos, Medical Daily reports.
For their study, which was recently published in PNAS, researchers at the University of California, Berkeley analyzed two groups of heterosexual subjects: 3000 people looking for dates online and 144 people participating in speed-dating sessions. In both settings, participants who exhibited open, expansive body language were found to be more likely to get asked out on real dates by the opposite sex.
With online dating profiles in particular, pictures featuring open stances were 27 percent more likely to receive a positive response from prospective matches. While the trend was especially prominent for men (women deemed men with open poses more attractive), it could be seen in both male and female profiles.
The study's lead researcher, Tanya Vacharkulksemsuk, believes this is because expansive postures are associated with dominance and confidence. "We do know from past research that having an open posture communicates a lot. Confidence, high self-esteem, being open, and being relaxed. Doing this over the course of a date can be beneficial," she told
Not only can adopting strong, open body language in a dating scenario help you look confident, it may be able to trick your brain into feeling confident as well. Harvard Business School social psychologist Amy Cuddy suggests striking a "power pose" (like opening up your arms or standing akimbo) next time you're in need of a quick self-esteem boost. On the other hand, you may want to take this guidance with a grain of salt—other researchers have been critical of the Harvard study. Maybe the best advice is to position your body in whatever configuration makes you feel most confident.
[h/t Medical Daily]