headshots (post one!)

1. general recommendations

2. constructing your profile

3. cliches you should probably avoid

4. the worst cliche of them all

5. logical blunders the polyamorous should avoid

6. HEADSHOTS (post one!)

7. be open to the "just friends" option

8. messaging / netiquette

9. what's next? when to meet her offline?

10. keeping yourself safe

11. potential pitfalls or "This confusing thing happened and . . . ???"s

12. Linsey gives some guest advice

Yes, just like we just said above, we're saying again, POST A HEADSHOT.

And not from so far away that no one can actually see you.

All other choices (obviously including no photo) are vastly inferior in terms of motivating anyone to view the rest of your profile, send you a message, or reply to you.

It's clever to keep it classy. Again (because it's important enough to repeat), headshots are best to go beside your community posts, and headshots and/or tasteful bodyshots with your face still clearly visible are best for the board or your Cover Photo.

Don't go XXX. A respectable and/or sophisticated headshot is actually much more likely to generate the interest required to send you a message, or reply to you.

Photos of just your ass or just your boobs will cause many to wonder if you do actually have a head. Contrary to what we imagine are the expectations of the just-ass and just-boobs uploaders, they don't generate much interest here. Perhaps Just Asses and Just Boobs would be super popular on sites for heterosexual men? Quite possibly. Here? Not so much.

A metric crapton of studies insist profiles with headshots are clicked upon far more often and generate exponentially more interest and messages. (And our statistics on member behavior on this site very strongly suggest we're NOT an exception to this overall rule.) Women feel more comfortable responding to those who post realistic-looking headshots because they seem more "real" and more sincere about meeting people offline, and thus, much more appealing. A headshot is a signal to a lot of women that you’re more serious about meeting other women in person.

(Because if you are, she will find out what you look like eventually, you know.)

Many women also like having a face in mind, even when sending that very first message.

We've heard it said that posting a personals profile without a headshot is like going to a party with a bag over your head. That might be a little severe, but only just a little. A face to go along with the words on the screen will make you seem less virtual/theoretical and more "real" and "actual." It will also make your profile much more welcoming, which will make it easier for women to message you.

No, a headshot isn't as compelling as in-person eye contact, but it's 1000 times more fascinating than a blank space where one could have been.

To put it bluntly, those who insist they cannot post a headshot for privacy reasons are way less likely to get messages from other members. Also, a discourse on why you feel you cannot is of no interest to anyone.

Most women will not care what set of reasons you supposedly have for not posting a headshot, in part because those could all be fake.

Also, if you’re talking to people you don’t even know yet, they just don’t care. (Don't shoot the messenger.)

To those who are paranoid about being "discovered," lesbotronic is much more private than most personals or lesbian social networking services. Anyone viewing your profile will have filled out our lengthy questionnaire themselves.

And then . . . guess what? Who is that other person who can see your profile?

Why, that would be someone else who also signed up for lesbotronic.

It's likely NOT a problem that she "ran into you" here because hey . . . guess where she is TOO, see?

Any "discovery" should be mutual and non-problematic.


I mean, if you're closeted and running for political office on a homophobic platform as an allegedly totally heterosexual person . . . then maybe not so much. Or if you live in a metro area full of lesbians you and your current significant other both know, many of them are single and dating (possibly on lesbotronic), and you intend to use internet personals to find someone to cheat on that significant other with without any of your mutual friends noticing . . . maybe not so much then, either. Or, in a witness protection program? On the lam from the law? OK, if a sketch of you has recently been on the news with the word WANTED above it, you better not post a photo either.

But for everyone else, a headshot means you’re not “hiding” or "cheating" and that you’re not going to “stir up drama” by posting it. (Which would strongly suggest you'll not do similar just by starting a new relationship.)

In other words, if you say your profile is NOT designed to help you “cheat” on another relationship, you'll look better if your headshot posting actions seem to back that up.

A few women have seen our advice on this issue and written in protesting, "But I don't want to post a headshot because I don't want to start things out on a strictly superficial foot!"

No. That assumption won't get you very far at all.

You can and will avoid strictly superficial footing with a new internet contact (anyone you'll message back, anyway) by posting "deeper" things about yourself in your profile, and only responding to women that seem sincerely interested in those more complex or more personality-based things, possibly in addition to complimenting you on your photo. I mean, if you think otherwise, you would seem to be suggesting that you'll only want to exchange messages with women who will NOT like the way you look . . . right?

What you WILL avoid by posting a headshot upfront are initial messages from folks containing little other than an immediate request for one.

While asking for a headshot immediately or only 5 minutes into a conversation will make you sound more superficial than a drunken frat boy, having one already posted with your profile will eliminate all that in that you won't get those sort of excessively simple-minded contacts ("Liked your profile, gotta pic?").

Posting a headshot will also make it much less likely you'll invest any time and/or emotional energy corresponding with anyone who would later reject you due to nothing other than lack of interest in your physical appearance.

Yes, it's also possible to exchange pictures by emailing and/or texting them instead, but in order to do that, you have to get TO the emailing-and-texting stage of the relationship, which is at least two stages PAST viewing your profile and sending that first message.

If you don't post a headshot upfront, some women aren't going to be interested enough to go TO the messaging stage with you, they'll just stick with the profiles that bothered to post one in the first place.

In addition to that legitimate concern, sending a photo as an email or text attachment doesn't work for everyone. Some don’t like to open them due to a fear of viruses or malware (that crap often arrives as attachments from unknown sources). Some signed up with a work email address or cellphone that doesn’t allow them and may even totally reject entire messages containing any attachment. Some have difficulty opening attachments, sometimes for software-related reasons.

Also, if you do send one, you REALLY need to compress it first if it's larger than a few 100MB, and that can be a hassle.

Many folks find the sending of an unsolicited attachment especially rude if it is large. Large generally = anything over 300MB for the file size of the photo. Anything larger than that can take up an excessive amount of room in their account, and similarly excessive time to download, especially if they are not on a super fast connection.

This can especially be a problem for those out there with newer digital cameras but without much image-editing facility. The newer cameras can take extremely dense, extremely high resolution photos, suitable for use in larger-scale print applications. That's nice if that’s what you actually needed, but for strictly internet usage, much less so. If you send them along right out of the camera, uncompressed and really freakin’ huge, many will think you’re either inconsiderate or a dolt.

Finally, it’s considered rude to ask someone else for a pic when you haven't provided one first in your online profile.

<-- back to #5: logical blunders the polyamorous should consider and avoid <--

--> onward to #7: be open to the "just friends" option -->