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That would make them relevant and witty, and likely to stand out to similarly math-minded gals.

Pinot Grizzly – Maybe : Sounds playful with subtle word play; indicates that this user likes wine and has that Northwest-scruffy vibe (you know, like a bit too much stuff from Filson and a few days’ of stubble). : Could possibly signify “bear,” which is a slang term in the gay community for guys who are a bit hairier/less effeminate.

Trying too hard to perfectly sum yourself up is a common pitfall. Generally you should avoid anything with numbers, or super descriptive words (Ski Girl Seattle is very boring, even if it’s easy to come up with—and it only conveys information we’d be able to find in other areas of her profile).

It’s also best not to just recycle whatever old school internet handle has been your Twitter username and forum login info for years—stuff we created c.

It’s the first thing potential dates see, and as this humorous article indicates, it makes a big impression (sometimes unintentionally).

It’s either a huge advantage, a huge disadvantage, or a missed opportunity! You can check out this link with a decent round-up of some of the very worst username strategies, but there are a lot of more mundane things that make for bad usernames.

Also avoid awkward SMS-speak like “u” for “you” and “4” for “for.” You’ll alienate more people than you attract, even if that is in fact how you communicate in short form like text messages or casual emails. Don’t you usually wait until a couple texts in to get that lazy with someone new? All this tells me is that you’re a dude (probably) who’s named Jeremy (probably) who may or may not have been born and/or graduated and/or created this profile in 1987. So don’t just go sticking in the number of your birth year or area code or whatever.

Numbers = not remotely compelling, unless you manage to work the Fibonacci sequence in there and you’re an actual mathematician or something.

Of course, this will be paired with a GREAT profile picture, and a GREAT profile. Let’s analyze a couple usernames and think about what they convey to potential matches. Even if sex is important to you, you come off like a complete jackass if you actually spell that out with middle school shorthand.

Because when you’re dating online, which is an extremely competitive medium, you need every advantage you can get.

A great username is a differentiator – a unique brand name – something that completely sets you apart from every other person on a dating site.

Could send the wrong message about your orientation, despite you self-identifying as straight on the site.

(As my husband would jokingly yell, “WORDS MEAN THINGS! Think about the double-entendre and maybe check the terms you want to use in Urban Dictionary, but with a grain of salt.) Ski Rainier – A-OK : Totally inoffensive, and devoid of awkward numbers/underscores; conveys a bit about your potential interests which can help spark a conversation and appeal to similarly outdoorsy singles (or singles who find skiers hot, or singles who want someone to help them learn to ski, etc.) : Still a little boring, but you’re getting there!

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