Hinge Reviews

Online Dating

Hinge Review: Pros & Cons of the App Plus 3 Alternative Choices

Hayley Matthews
Hayley Matthews Updated:

Our Hinge review can tell you everything you need to know about this quality-driven dating app — and offer some other alternatives if it’s not quite your thing.

Hinge is incredibly convenient for those of us who keep our smartphones with us for 87% of the day. With this dating app on your side, you can go about your day while the app delivers new matches and messages without missing a beat.

In terms of dating, Hinge is one of the most efficient and reliable apps available. It has been called “the relationship app” and “the anti-Tinder,” and the team boasts that it was “designed to be deleted,” meaning single folks won’t stay single for long after downloading Hinge.

The Hinge dating app caters to serious relationship-minded singles in the dating scene, but it’s hardly the biggest name or the app with the biggest database in the online world, so we’ve listed three alternatives to Hinge in case you download this free app and don’t see many compatible options.

Hinge Review | 3 Alternative Choices

Hinge Was Founded in 2011 & Is Only For Serious Relationships (4.3/5.0 Rating)

Hinge is on a mission to make dating fun, simple, and meaningful again, and we’d say it’s doing a great job because we’ve heard many success stories from people who have used this app to find love.

Since its 2011 launch (at that time it was just a web app), Hinge has become the anti-Tinder, foregoing swiping and a hookup environment in favor of a more commitment-oriented environment. The latest stats from GlobalDatingInsights show that 63% of Hinge users want a relationship (vs. 33% who want dates, 2% hookups, and 2% something else). After all, that’s what it was made for — it was designed to be deleted.

Photo of Justin McLeod, CEO of Hinge

Justin McLeod is the CEO of Hinge, the self-proclaimed anti-Tinder app that strives to help singles make genuine connections.

“We’ve swiped left on swiping,” the company wrote in an email to TechCrunch. “Dating apps have become a game, and with every swipe, we’ve all moved further from the real connections that we crave.”

As of 2013, Hinge had 60,000 users. We assume those numbers have increased since then, but the team seems to be pretty tight-lipped about it. The site itself sees over 180,000 visitors a month, and the app has 4.5 stars on iTunes.

In terms of success, we’ve learned that Hinge has created over 1 million matches, and it is responsible for arranging over 35,500 daters per week.

If we’re talking about location and age, Hinge is available in 28 countries and about 90% of users  are between 25- and 35-years-old. The dating app works hard to keep users engaged in the dating process until they find The One. According to CEO Justin McLeod, 85% of new users are still active a week after joining and 75% are still active a month after joining.

Enough with the numbers, though — let’s get into the nitty gritty of Hinge. Here are several pros, as well as a few cons, that we found when testing out the app.

Pros: Free, Nice Layout, Easy to Start Conversations

You can download Hinge for free via the App Store and Google Play. It’s totally free from start to finish, and you can make the signup process even easier on yourself by connecting to your Facebook or Instagram profiles. That way, the app can automatically fill in basic bio information (location, age, education, career, etc.) as well as pull some great pictures for you to select.

You must upload six photos to your Hinge profile, so it helps to have an in with Facebook or Instagram so you don’t have to go hunting through your gallery.

Hinge also analyzes your Facebook friends list and prioritizes friends of friends in your match list. The app used to let you know if you had a Facebook friend in common, but now that phone number logins are allowed on the app, it has removed this feature. Still, it’s helpful to know that everyone in the Hinge network has been verified as authentic and could fit seamlessly in your social circle.

Photo of the Hinge app

Hinge will deliver 10 matches a day, and you can like 10 members every day — for free.

Every day, Hinge will send a curated list of suggested matches to your Discover section, and you can either like them or pass on them. If you want to express your interest, you must comment on or like something on their profile. You can give a thumbs up to a travel photo or respond to one of their prompts (e.g., “What’s your favorite Disney movie?” or “What’s your dream job?”) to get the ball rolling.

Singles can also go to the Likes You section to review their potential matches and send likes to unlock a conversation with an attractive person.

This swiping system goes beyond the superficial and helps singles start conversations based on shared interests, sense of humor, and goals. Plus, it’s completely free.

Hinge will only show you one dating profile at a time, and you have to make a decision to like or pass before you can see another person. If you pass on someone, it’s possible to see that person again if he or she likes you, so no swiping decision is really final. Hinge encourages its members to give each other another chance to make a romantic connection.

If you’re not satisfied by the matches in the Discover section, then you can go into your Dating Preferences to adjust your standards in terms of age, gender, location, and other factors. Paying members have access to more filters for religion, education, politics, and ethnicity, and they can also see everyone who has liked their profile at once.

A Hinge subscription also provides greater benefits in the swiping scene. Free members can send 10 likes per day, while paying members can send an unlimited number of likes.

A preferred membership will also give you access to the Hinge Insiders, who will share “data-driven insights, profile optimization advice, tips to engage in the best conversation, what prompts and photos perform well on the app, and anything else.”

Hinge has a lot going on in the looks department, too. The interface is clean and intuitive, especially if you’ve used other dating apps before. Your Story includes six photos and three answers to Hinge’s questions, and there are clearly labeled icons for everything such as a speech bubble for sending messages, a pencil for editing your Story, and an eye for hiding and showing certain pieces of information.

Cons: Can See the Same Matches Over & Over Again

We’re big fans of Hinge, and really the only complaints we could find about it is some people didn’t like when they were given matches they already had. Hinge has a small dating pool, and it does recycle potential matches sometimes to make sure you are still not interested. We don’t think it hurts to give someone a second look, so that’s not too bad overall.

The FAQ section of the site says to tap the X icon if you want to move past someone and tap the three dots at the top right of their Story to permanently block or remove it if you don’t ever want to see them again.

Online daters should note that Hinge is geared more toward building relationships than providing easy access to sexual partners, so if you’re mostly looking to “hit it and quit it,” this may not be the best app for you.

Alternative Choices to Hinge

Hinge has effectively staked out an affordable middle ground for young singles seeking a serious relationship or marriage, and that’s made it quite popular in certain circles. However, if you’re over 40, not very tech-savvy, or looking for casual dates, this dating app may not be your thing.

We’ve ranked some of the best alternatives to Hinge to help singles explore how other platforms solve the problem of swiping and building deep connections in the virtual world. Here are our recommendations:

Match

Compared to Match, which was created in 1995, Hinge is a new kid on the block. Not only does Match have history on its side, but it also has the numbers: more than 30 million members and more first dates, second dates, relationships, and marriages than any of its competitors.

★★★★★
4.9/5.0

Relationships: Friends, Dates, and Relationships

Match System: Browse by zip, age, appearance, more

Our Experts Say: “Match has facilitated the most dates and relationships of any dating site, and its large audience and high success rate make it our top review...” Full Review »

Browse Free: View Photos Now

Match.com is pretty old-school, and its in-depth profiles and advanced search filters give singles much more room to maneuver and find a compatible person on their terms.

Get the Match app from iTunes or Google Play without paying a penny, and then swipe for matches. When someone catches your eye, view their profile and photos, add them to your Favorites, like them, and send them a virtual wink.

Elite Singles

A majority of Elite Singles’ user base (if not all of its user base) are looking for a long-term commitment, so you can rest assured that you won’t be wasting any time on the app. Elite Singles also has a fraud detection system that helps keep hackers at bay.

★★★★★
4.7/5.0

Relationships: Serious Relationships

Match System: Search, Receive Partner Suggestions

Our Experts Say: “EliteSingles is a leading dating site just for busy, single professionals. More than 80% of members have earned a college degree, and most are looking for a serious commitment...” Full Review »

Browse Free: View Photos Now

If education is another characteristic you constantly look for in a partner, Elite Singles could be the app for you. Over 80% of users have a higher education degree (bachelor’s, master’s, doctorate, etc.). And the odds are ever in your favor — 2,500 people on Elite Singles find love on a monthly basis.

Zoosk

Zoosk has one of the best mobile experiences around. Similar to Hinge, it’s integrated with Facebook (and Google+), so you can sync up an existing profile and create an account in seconds. However, Zoosk doesn’t require you to do this. You can simply sign up on your own without using social media. If this is the route you take, you’re given matches who are outside of your Facebook or Google+ circle. Zoosk has 38 million members, so the pool is definitely bigger.

★★★★★
4.7/5.0

Relationships: Fun Dates, Serious Relationships

Match System: Search and get match recommendations

Our Experts Say: “Zoosk is integrated with social media sites, like Facebook and Google+, so it's very popular with singles on the go...” Full Review »

Browse Free: View Photos Now

Another upside to Zoosk is it’s available for free on both iOS and Android devices, while Hinge is not. The main place to find matches on Zoosk is the Carousel, and there should be no confusion about the choices you’re making. Click the heart graphic if it’s a yes, the X graphic if it’s a no, and “Maybe” if it’s, well, a maybe.

Hinge: A Favorite for Serious Daters, But It’s Not the Only One!

We can’t say enough good things about Hinge. It’s genuinely helpful and incredibly insightful, especially if you’re in your 20s and hoping to get in a long-term relationship and one day get married.

Hinge is a convenient, safe, and free app where singles can discover mutual interest, have great conversations, and possibly fall in love.

Hinge makes a world of difference in how singles meet and match. The user base may be somewhat small, but you can always join multiple dating sites and apps to broaden your choices and expand your reach. Take a test-run through all of them (for free!) and see which one fits your lifestyle best!

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