When I created my online dating profile years ago, it was excruciating. The point is to describe yourself in a way that exudes self-confidence without seeming too boastful. You also want to appear comfortable with your attractiveness. Let me just say that there are a lot of guys out there with some very healthy egos. “Well, what can I say? Both of my parents were models, it’s a burden really, believe me!”
A lot of profiles begin with what could only be described as notations for a custom made suit: Chest 46 inches, waist 32 inches, height 6’ 2”. Except that there are some measurements that really aren't required, unless the pants are going to be extremely well tailored. I mostly breezed past these profiles, pausing just long enough to compare the photos to the text.
You also don’t want to reveal too much about yourself right up front. If the profile was more than four paragraphs, five tops, you could be certain that the emotional baggage was equally heavy. Full disclosure is rarely required or desired.
Posting no photo is the kiss of death. You are either so hideous that no amount of good lighting can compensate or you are married.
The text of gay men's profiles reads like those legal document templates that you can buy on the Internet: Standard language that can be selected from a list to create a custom profile. “Comfortable in my own skin, Able to laugh at myself, well adjusted”. Often verbs are discarded entirely: “SWGM, D/D Free, Top, LTR optional”
When I finally felt comfortable and published my profile, it was a boost to receive some notice. A lot of that could be attributed to being fresh meat. The dating pool for a gay man is quite a bit smaller than the general population. The dating pool for a recently out, previously married forty something year old gay man with kids is somewhere closer to twenty. Half of these were of the five paragraph profile variety and the first ones to contact me. But still, it was a start: Enough to give me confidence to contact Paul.