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One of my friends left her husband after over 10 years together because she felt ready to try something different. Specifically, she wanted to try dating women. After coming out as a lesbian woman to her family, she joined Match because Groupon had a coupon code for it. Within a week, she met a woman who’d used the same discount.
The two women had a good laugh over their shared thriftiness, and they quickly developed a serious relationship. They’ve now been married for 10 years.
This love story is a heartwarming example of the life-changing impact a dating site can have on lesbians seeking serious relationships. These two women joined Match on a lark, and they ended up meeting a soul mate. Online dating has become a powerful ally to the LGBTQ+ community in recent years. About 56% of LGBTQ+ singles say they have dated someone they met online, and 63% want to get married one day.
If you’re looking for a serious lesbian relationship, joining a top-rated dating site can be a fast and effective way to get something going with a new person.
Lesbian dating can be fraught with difficulties and headaches, but savvy women can solve one of the most pervasive problems — how rare it is to meet queer women in everyday life — by going online. Dating sites give lesbian women the luxury of being surrounded by their type. They can leave the straight dating scene behind and mingle with women in the LGBTQ+ community.
The following dating platforms offer tools to help lesbian women get their footing online and meet women with relationship potential.
Friends, Dates, and Relationships
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Relationships: Friends, Dates, and Relationships
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Match frequently appears at the top of lists like these because it’s one of the longest running and most successful dating platforms out there. Since 1995, this dating site has perfected its matchmaking system and developed an algorithm that takes a person’s personality traits, relationship goals, and sexual preferences into account.
My friend isn’t the only lesbian to find a bride on Match. Thousands of lesbians have joined this dating site to meet women who share their interest in getting in a long-term relationship.
Free members can browse a curated list of Daily Matches or use search filters by age, location, interests, looks, and lifestyle to discover compatible partners. Free members can message people in their Top Picks list. However, only paid subscribers can send unlimited messages on Match. This paywall helps to ensure that your matches are serious about meeting someone special.
Since its launch in 2014, Bumble has become known as the feminist dating app. Bumble Founder Whitney Wolfe left her role as Vice President of Marketing at Tinder to create an online dating app that would put women first. Literally, only women (and gay men) can send a first message here.
Bumble flipped traditional hetero-normative roles on their head by inviting women to make the first move. And people love it. The success of the dating platform led the team to launch Bumble Bizz for professional networking and Bumble BFF for general socializing and making friends.
If you’re looking for a lesbian relationship, you can rely on Bumble to introduce you to some quality candidates. Bumble may be a game-changer in the straight dating scene, but it works like a typical dating app for lesbian women. Once the match is created, either woman can send a first message. Bumble users should note that the match will disappear if no one sends a message within 24 hours. Don’t be shy, or a great date could pass you by!
As a queer woman on Reddit said, “Queer women are so afraid of coming off as creepy they often put too many restrictions on themselves. I know I do. Just ask her for her number. Also, just start asking women out on dates.”
Want to jump into the online dating scene without spending a fortune? Then you should sign up to a free dating site where you won’t be nickel-and-dimed for every match and message. Most dating sites have some free services, but you have to really dig into the Terms and Conditions to see which ones are genuinely worth your while.
A Consumer Report study found singles who used free dating sites expressed more satisfaction with their experience (maybe their expectations were lower?) and they were just as likely to meet dates. The study concluded, “While some users think quality does come at a price, there are benefits to free dating services as well. Online daters may be best off trying both types. Indeed, that’s what most do.”
Relationships: Serious Relationships
Match System: Search, Receive Partner Suggestions
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It’s free to create a profile and browse for matches on EliteSingles, an upscale dating site for professionals. This site markets itself to highly successful and relationship-minded singles who want a partner on their level. Over 85% of members are college-educated, and over 90% are looking for love.
Lesbian women can enjoy a premium dating experience here. The site creates dozens of daily matches based on specific dating preferences, and it also has a swiping game called Have You Met? where singles can quickly sort through viable dates. EliteSingles does not have search filters, so users must rely on the match algorithm to create serendipitous connections.
Since 2000, EliteSingles has established a global network of over 13 million singles, and its unlimited communication tools are well worth the price of a monthly subscription.
With a new motto and a fresh look, OkCupid has recently made an effort to improve the overall online dating experience. The free dating site has taken up the battle cry “Dating deserves better” and created new matching and communication tools to make browsing for dates more enjoyable for everyone.
Since its launch in 2004, OkCupid has been a dating site by single people, for single people. Communication is 100% free, and you don’t have to make a mutual match to send a message to someone you like. However, an unsolicited initial message will appear on your dating profile, not in your crush’s inbox until that person likes you back.
OkCupid is a fantastic free dating resource for lesbians. In 2014, OkCupid became the first dating app to introduce 22 gender and 13 orientation options for its members. New users can proudly identify as lesbian, bisexual, questioning, sapiosexual, homoflexible, or none of the above.
Whether it’s offering “Game of Thrones” badges or coming up with original dating prompts, OkCupid has continually provided its users with innovative ways to excite curiosity and romance. And it’s totally free!
Fem stands out in the online dating scene because it caters solely to women. In fact, it’s one of the leading lesbian dating apps around. You can download the app for free on Google Play and start swiping immediately. The app is rated M for Mature because conversations can get pretty steamy here.
The dating app gets lesbian and bisexual women talking in social chat rooms and private email inboxes, and it also has the option to send videos, audio clips, and photos to other users. You can also post videos on your dating profile.
Fem’s location-based features can highlight the profiles of women who live in your area, but you can also widen your distance parameters to meet matches around the world.
In the words of the Fem team, “Our mission is to help you find the type of relationship you are looking for. Meeting, socializing with lesbians, and dating has never been so easy.”
Some people think dating apps are too superficial and can only facilitate meaningless hookups. Daters can burn out after swiping through countless profiles without finding the deep connection they desire. A 28-year-old single named Kirsty Finalayson said, “[Dating apps] fuel the idea of a disposable society where people can match, date once, and not give it much effort.”
However, some dating apps have gone to great lengths to appeal to the serious daters of the world. The following two lesbian dating apps can spark relationships that go the distance.
The Zoosk dating app is one of the highest grossing dating apps in the App Store. Its singles network includes over 40 million members in 80 countries. The app has been translated into 25 languages.
Zoosk began as a Silicon Valley thought experiment in 2007, then it grew into a highly successful startup, and now the company runs one of the most dynamic and popular dating platforms in the world. The Zoosk platform uses behavioral matchmaking and a social-media-like interface to keep users engaged from the moment they log on.
Zoosk’s success stories have come from all corners of the world, and many lesbian women have written to the team to say they’ve met their match on the app.
HER is a women-only dating app where lesbian, bisexual, queer, and questioning singles can enjoy themselves. The app fosters a safe space for chatting, mingling, and flirting, and the HER team focuses more on building a community than facilitating superficial likes.
Since its launch, HER has provided powerful dating and social tools geared toward queer women. Over 10 million profiles are active on the platform, and it’s easy to build friendships by liking photos, sending messages, or responding to public event invitations.
HER helps its users find queer events in their area, so they can rock their rainbow gear at a PRIDE parade or get their drink on at a wine tasting. This free dating app is a fantastic wingwoman for people seeking genuine, fulfilling relationships.
“This app gives me hope as I’ve actually talked to some pretty amazing women,” said one user in a review on iTunes. “The app itself is providing you the chance to meet incredible women, but it can be a bit much for those who are wary of their money.”
In 2012, the William Institute conducted a survey that found that about 3.7% of African-Americans identified as LGBT. That’s a very slim minority. When you calculate that at least half of those respondents were probably gay men, things look pretty stark indeed for Black lesbians in the United States.
However, a Black-friendly dating site can help singles find that one special person. Lesbian singles can use sophisticated search filters and niche dating networks to diversify their date prospects and meet singles who identify as LGBTQ+ and POC.
Relationships: Deep Relationships or Just Casual Dates
Match System: Search by location, age, more
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Since its launch in 2002, BlackPeopleMeet has been the premier dating site for Black, biracial, multiracial singles. It takes less than two minutes to create a dating profile, identify yourself as a woman seeking women, and start browsing for free.
As a People Media Site, BlackPeopleMeet has access to tens of thousands of profiles in its database, and the match system highlights the most attractive and compatible of the bunch.
Plenty of Fish takes pride in being the best dating site for conversations. It’s free to chat on this site. No hidden fees, no match requirements, no limited-time trial periods — just free forever for all. Amen! POF has gained popularity in the Black singles community because it offers such a great deal and such a diverse dating pool.
According to its internal statistics, Plenty of Fish members send over 1 billion messages in the average month, and over 70,000 new singles join the network in the average day. Plus, over 57 million couples connect on Plenty of Fish every day.
Plenty of Fish also claims to have over 88 million users around the world. Its touching success stories include many lesbian love affairs and marriages.
For example, Christina and Jennifer met on Plenty of Fish and developed a friendship despite living in different parts of the U.S. After communicating for seven months, Christina moved to Rochester, New York, to see if their relationship could work. Five months later, they were engaged. This cute lesbian couple officially tied the knot in May 2019.
Once you reach a certain age, dating becomes increasingly difficult. Seniors often don’t have as many opportunities to meet people as they used to, and their social lives can sometimes become a bit routine, which is also bad news for their love lives.
Fortunately, many trustworthy dating platforms have recognized the potential of the senior dating market and created resources that appeal to this mature group of singles. Whether you’ve just come out of the closet or you’ve been out and proud for decades, you can join a senior-friendly dating site to meet lesbian and bisexual women who share your life experience.
Relationships: Dates and Relationships
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|Mature Singles (50+)*
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OurTime is a People Media site designed to enrich the lives of singles over 50. This empowering dating site has all the usual bells and whistles — flirts, likes, matches, and search filters — but it also has an events calendar and virtual gift options to bring seniors out of their shells.
Senior lesbians have many options to connect on OurTime, and the site’s safety features will help them stay out of trouble as they make new acquaintances online. OurTime even offers users a secure personal phone number to give to potential matches. Texts, calls, and voicemails will be forwarded to your phone, and your online crush won’t have your personal data.
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The same dating experts who created Elite Singles put their heads together to help senior daters with a niche platform known as Silver Singles. This senior dating site and app has used the same sophisticated personality questionnaire to create compatible matches and facilitate both same-sex and LGBTQ+ relationships.
This dating site caters to older singles who are serious about settling down, getting married, and building a life with a new partner. The match system uses psychological principles to assess and identify important areas of compatibility.
Once you’ve completed your dating profile, you can see how you stack up to date prospects in the area. However, Silver Singles blurs photos for privacy, and the only way to view another member’s photo gallery is by upgrading from a free membership to a paid subscription plan.
Free members can view their matches and see when someone sends them a virtual smile or message, but only paid members have access to unlimited chatting.
Some American politicians push the false narrative that the LGBTQ+ lifestyle threatens traditional American values. These holier-than-thou leaders may want to separate the world into good Christians and godless gays, but in reality many LGBTQ+ also go to church and believe in God. These individuals have embraced a religion that hasn’t always embraced them, and that’s an undeniably Christian thing to do.
According to the Pew Research Center, 48% of gay, lesbian, and bisexual people identify as Christian. If your faith is important to you, then you may want to check out the following Christian-friendly dating sites that welcome lesbian women.
Relationships: Dates and Serious Relationships
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ChristianMingle is the leading Christian dating site in the U.S. with millions of profiles to its name. Singles sign up because they want to build God-centered relationships. The site doesn’t require its members to be Christian, but it does ask that all users be open to Christian marriages.
According to the ChristianMingle team, “What sets us apart is our ability to help our members make quality connections. We feature robust profiles and personalization features to help members connect.”
ChristianMingle is powered by Sparks Network Inc., which is also responsible for running JDate, LDS Singles, and Adventist Singles. These sites recognize the importance of meeting someone who shares similar spiritual values and religious beliefs.
Hinge is a dating app that was “designed to be deleted.” That means its quality-driven features help singles make a match, have a good conversation, and build a relationship so they no longer need the app’s help. The founders don’t even like to call it a dating app — they characterize it as a relationship app.
In 2016, Hinge Founder Justin McLeod decided to remove the typical swiping feature from the app and require users to instead like or comment on something on the dating profile. This may seem like a small touch, but it can lead to more meaningful interactions on the app. Hinge encourages its users to show interest and start conversations based on what they like about that person in particular.
In a world of swiping and ghosting, it means a lot when users take that extra moment to say something original and get to know one another in a more natural and respectful way. Most users share their religious and political views on their profiles, so you’ll know right away if you line up on the important issues.
“Hinge encourages you to put yourself out there, which is key if you’re looking for a real partner under any circumstances,” Justin McLeod said in a Vogue interview.
Hinge has gotten a recent boost in the LGBTQ+ community after presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg disclosed that he met his husband Chasten on the relationship app. From April to May 2019, Hinge saw a 30% increase in profiles created by LGBTQ+ singles.
If you’ve never tried online dating before, it’s natural to feel a little hesitant or have some reservations. You may not really know what to expect and that can be unnerving, but it’s like when you have first-day-of-school butterflies or just-moved-to-a-new-city jitters — you just have to get used to a new environment.
Millions of people have used online dating to find dates and get in relationships. In fact, meeting online is now the most popular way for brides to meet their spouses. According to a survey conducted by The Knot, about 22% of recent marriages have a dating site or social media platform to thank.
The legit dating sites and apps will typically have many positive reviews and success stories to prove that they work. You should do your research online and ask your friends for their recommendations to help you figure out which dating platform is right for you. It may take a bit of trial and error to find the right fit, but as long as you keep a positive attitude and take reasonable safety precautions, you should be able to make matches, find dates, and build relationships online.
Your dating profile is your first impression to potential love interests, so it’s important to be deliberate with every word and picture. A good lesbian dating profile is both authentic and original. It has to be on point because online daters have hundreds, if not thousands, of alternatives at their fingertips. Singles can’t just do the bare minimum and expect to succeed in such a competitive environment. That’s why many dating experts recommend filling in every “optional” section available to you on a dating site.
It takes more than a name, birthdate, and location to catch someone’s eye. Generally speaking, the most attractive dating profiles are full of juicy details that highlight a person’s sense of humor, experiences, values, and goals. Your profile should reflect your personality, so don’t follow a template or spout platitudes — say something only you know how to say.
“You should probably know that I somehow manage to spill guacamole on myself every time I eat it, which is often,” said NurseJen in her Zoosk dating profile. “If you can get past that, you’ll probably enjoy getting to know me.”
Even if you don’t have much space to express yourself, you can still make a joke in your byline or post a goofy pic to capture women’s attention. One of my friends likes to write cheeky responses to typical dating prompts, so when asked, “What are you looking for?” she’ll say something like, “My sunglasses. Has anyone seen them?”
OkCupid has actually broken down the numbers on this question and found that using netspeak is bad and bringing up specific interests is good. First messages on this dating site were more likely to get responses if they used niche words such as “band,” “vegetarian,” “tattoo(s),” and, inexplicably, “zombies.”
Having a good sense of humor also seems to work in online daters’ favor — saying “haha” or “lol” both had reply rates over 40%.
Your first message should be fairly brief. Anything longer than two or three sentences is likely to scare someone off. According to OkCupid, the ideal first message is between 50 to 200 characters long, which is about one minute’s worth of typing for the average person. That’s just enough space to introduce yourself, give a compliment, and ask a question to get the conversation rolling.
“Think of what YOU respond to,” suggested lesbian matchmaker Frankie Bashan of the Little Gay Book. “Craft a message either based on her profile or something on your own profile.”
Some love stories start with a furtive glance at a party or a pickup line at a bar. Others begin with a coupon code and a match request. My friend’s second marriage has given her the freedom to be herself and be loved for all her quirks — including her enthusiastic coupon-clipping.
Even if you’ve tried online dating before and haven’t gotten the results you want, it’s never too late to create a new profile and have a fresh start on a different site or app. You can explore any of the 13 lesbian dating platforms on this list to meet quality dates and build relationships one message at a time.