Ten pictures you should NOT post with your online dating profile... ever


In today's Online Dating What Not To Do, let's talk about what that profile picture really says about you. [Note, below I used fake pictures from gettyimages so as not to get have someone recognize their sister's cousin's second husband's stepbrother on here] Let's start with some basics. Your picture should be:
1) Flattering. Ask someone if you're not sure.
2) Taken in a neutral or phototabulous location. This means against a blank wall, a bland sofa, or in front of a touristy spot. Beaches, mountains, landmarks welcome. Bathrooms, kitchens and random confusing place not. By random confusing place, I mean why are you posing in front of a vending machine? In line at the local cafeteria? In front of a high school? (I've seen those three recently)
3) Like a resume - non-threatening, positive, and revealing the best you have to offer. And like a resume, it should not give me any reason to reject you from jump.
Here are some of the worst offenses:

1. The Cropped Pic - If the only good picture of you is the one of you huddled up with a former S.O. or some random person of the opposite sex... I'd rather you go with the bathroom mirror picture. Something about this is just wrong. But it's not as bad as...


2. The Wedding Pic - No sir. No ma'am. I'm sure you did look lovely on your wedding day but er, uh - aren't you in the market for someone new? Do you really think it's a good idea to post your failed marriage pic on your "Seeking Sexxxy Singles" profile? Go ahead and say it, "What part of the game is this?"


3. The Trying Too Hard Pic - They say a picture is worth a thousand words but this one is more like one: Thirsty. This picture is appropriate on your "aspiring model" MySpace page, not if you want someone to actually buy you dinner. Unless your message is "I'm down for whatever' - keep the ultrasultry pics on lock for a minute.


4. I'm going to give the "street cred" photo a pass because I recognize that a) there's an audience for that and b) it could be worse:


5) The Prison Pic - I'm so sad to report that I have seen this with my own two eyes. My first problem is - what are criminals doing with internet access and digicams? My second problem is - Is someone seriously checking for the Orange Jumpsuit dude? [I know there are prison groupies but come ON now] This is just no bueno.

6. The Offspring Pic - on the one hand, it's great that you are proud of your kids. It's also great if the two (or more) of you are cute together. But I feel some kinda way about having your child in your dating profile picture with you. I'm not saying keep your kids hidden, I'm just saying there are people who prey on that, don't open yourself up to it. 


7. The Cap Daddy (old guy in the club) Pic - Who can point all the ways this picture is wrong? I can count eight instances of FAIL in this picture. All that's missing is the balloon coming out of his mouth saying, "Watch out there now!"


8. The Ebony/Jet Pose - Cue the line from Boomerang "This is my best mac daddy vibe I'm giving you here. What's up?" When I see pics like this (in front of jets and cars), I think of #3 above - Trying. Too. Hard. What is natural about that? How many times a day do you find yourself squatting and holding the position (non-exercise related)?


9. The "Twenty Years Ago" Pic - Listen, the older woman in the picture above is lovely so there is NO GOOD DARNED reason why she should post her college picture and pretend she still looks like that today. People have got to stop perpetrating with the 10 years/40 pounds/2 kids ago pics. Yes men, you too. You are who you are today. Somebody is checking for the real you. Quit holding onto the past.


10. The Infamous "Flex" Pic - Why gents? Unless you are a personal trainer... why? Please reference numbers 3 and 8 above. And don't take this picture, let alone post it somewhere. I'm begging.

BougieLand, do you have any pic tips for our online posters out there? Did I miss some glaring violation? If you were posting your picture - what would it look like? Are you the posing in a bathing suit type? Leaning on your car hood? Smiling sedately into the camera? Do tell...