/  Dating

How to Start a Tinder Conversation With a Girl Like a Man

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Joshua Sigafus

Dating, Relationships

Joshua has 15 years of writing experience within the complex territories of dating, masculinity, and relationships. His own personal life journey was kick-started by a pivotal marital breakdown of his own and led him down a path of self-discovery and masculine transformation, culminating in him developing a career as a men's dating coach. Read full bio.

Published: Feb 3, 2024
12 min read
Attractive woman impressed by the opening Tinder message and smiling on her phone
Key Takeaways

Use thoughtful, engaging openers tailored to her interests, maintain a confident yet respectful tone, and steer clear of clichés and superficial compliments. This approach, combined with actively listening, responding genuinely, and deploying a few ‘text dating tactics’ sets the stage for a connection that goes beyond just a swipe.

I remember the first time I downloaded Tinder on my phone. 

I was super excited.

I snapped some selfies, set up my profile, and rushed through dozens of swipes—trying to find ‘the one.’ 

The app was so filled with beautiful women that it made my head spin. 

It was like a sexy smorgasbord laid out for me on a silver platter. 

And you can probably imagine how ‘elated’ I was when I started getting some matches. 

“Heck yes,” I thought to myself. “This ‘dating thing’ is easier than I thought.” 

You can also probably imagine my dismay when, after only one or two messages, most of my matches left me on read, ghosted, flaked—or even worse, unmatched with me altogether. 

What was I doing wrong? Why was this happening?

It took me over two years of hard work, studying, learning, and practicing to learn the answers. 

And I’m about to share all the important stuff with you in this guide. 

If you absorb and apply this information, I’m confident it’ll take you from ‘getting unmatched with’ the majority of the time to significantly increasing your close rates on Tinder—all based on tweaking your opening lines. 

5 Tinder Conversation Starters That’ll Get Her Attention

Alright. Let’s cut right to the chase. 

These are the five starters that, statistically, have worked the best for me in my own Tinder adventures (ranked in order by how effective they’ve been). 

And I still swear by them to this day. 

1. The Curiosity-Provoking Question

figure out how to get her curious about you

“Hey [Her Name], I noticed you have a picture at [Location/Activity in her profile]. I’ve been wanting to check that out! What was the best part about it?”

Why it works: It shows you’ve paid attention to her profile, calls her out by name (girls tend to respond really well to being addressed by their first name in messages), and creates an opportunity for her to share her interests or experiences, making the conversation more personal and engaging.

Follow-Up Strategy: After she responds to your question about the location or activity, share a bit about your own experiences or interest in that area. This creates a two-way conversation. For instance, if she mentions a hiking spot she loves, you could talk about your favorite hike or ask her about her latest hiking experiences, and strike up a conversation that’s interesting to both of you.

Remember—dating is about emotional connection. That’s what she’s looking for. And that starts with a good conversation that captures her interest.  

2. The Playful Challenge

“I see you’re a fan of [Her Interest, e.g., ‘Harry Potter’]. Okay, trivia challenge: which house would the Sorting Hat put you in and why?”

Why it works: It’s light-hearted and fun, inviting her to engage in a playful conversation. It also taps into something she’s interested in, making the conversation more enjoyable and less generic.

Follow-Up Strategy: Once she answers the Harry Potter house question, play along with her choice. You can share your house and reasons or create a light, humorous debate about which house is better. This keeps the conversation engaging and playful.

3. The Unique Compliment + Question Combo

Unique Compliments

“Your taste in [specific thing from her profile, e.g., ‘music’] is impressive. I’m always looking to expand my playlist. What’s one song you think everyone should listen to at least once?”

Why it works: This approach shows appreciation for a specific aspect of her personality or interests, rather than just her looks. It also opens the door for a shared interest discussion.

Follow-Up Strategy: After she shares her song choice, take the time to listen to it if you haven’t already, and then share your thoughts. This shows you’re genuinely interested in her interests. You can also share a song you love in return, fostering a mutual exchange of interests.

4. Observational Humor

“I couldn’t help but notice we both have a thing for [something in both your profiles, e.g., ‘sunglasses in every photo’]. Is this our secret club? Let’s get to work recruiting.”

Why it works: Using humor is a great way to break the ice. Making an observation about a commonality, even a trivial one, creates an instant connection and a sense of in-joke intimacy.

Follow-Up Strategy: Once she responds to your humorous observation, build on it with more humor or steer the conversation towards learning more about her. For instance, if you joked about sunglasses, ask about her favorite places or activities where she wears them most.

5. The Thought-Provoking Scenario

“Random question time: If you could have dinner with any three people, dead or alive, who would they be and why? I’m genuinely curious.”

Why it works: This type of opener encourages her to share something about herself that’s deeper than surface level, which can lead to more meaningful and interesting conversations.

Follow-Up Strategy: After she answers the dinner guest question, delve deeper into her choices. Ask what she would talk about with those people or what about them fascinates her. This can lead to a deeper understanding of her values and interests. Be ready to share your dinner guest choices and reasons too.

You’ve Got Her Captivated. What Next?

Wherever the conversation goes, always follow this advice while continuing to banter:

The key is to listen actively, show genuine interest in her responses, and share relevant pieces of your life or opinions in return. 

This reciprocal exchange helps build a connection and keeps the conversation flowing naturally.

But with that being said, becoming her chat buddy isn’t the goal. 

So what comes next? Let’s talk about that. 

Method #1: Ask For The Number, Then Plan The Date

ask for the number sooner rather than later

This is probably the most ‘tried and true’ method for getting the conversation off the app and onto phone text as quickly as possible. 

And once you’ve made this step, you’ll be in a much better position to get an ‘affirmative reply’ when you ask her out. 

Here are the basic steps that you’ll want to follow:

1. Build a Foundation

Before asking for her number, ensure the conversation has reached a point where there’s mutual interest and engagement. Look for signs like her asking questions about you, laughing at your jokes, or sharing personal details.

Just don’t let the conversation drag on too long. As a general rule of thumb, this ‘magic moment’ will happen somewhere between 4 and 12 messages into the conversation. If you go very far past 12, your odds of setting up a successful date will sometimes start to fizzle out. 

2. Create a Smooth Transition

Transition naturally to asking for her number. You could say something like: 

“I’m really enjoying our chat. Would you be open to continuing this conversation over text? I find it more personal than Tinder.”

3. Express Intentionality

Once you have her number, make your intentions clear. Let her know you’d like to meet up. 

For example:

“I’d love to meet and continue our conversation in person. Are you up for that?”

4. Propose a Specific Plan

Suggest a specific date idea based on your conversation. If she mentioned loving coffee, propose a coffee date. “How about we grab a coffee this Saturday? I know a great place.”

5. Finalize The Details

Once she agrees, finalize the date details. Confirm the time and place, but use statements.

“Let’s meet at Joe’s in [area] at 2:00pm.” If the time doesn’t work for her, she’ll suggest a different time which will be much more efficient than putting the ball in her court.

Let her know you’re looking forward to it and you’ll see her then.

6. Maintain Contact

Keep the conversation going lightly until the date. This maintains the connection without overdoing it.

Failing this step will increase your odds of getting ghosted or flaked on. 

7. Day-Before Confirmation

A day before the planned date, send a confirmation message. 

It could be as simple as:

“Looking forward to tomorrow at [time]. See you at [place]!”


Some dating coaches advise against this. But I’ve learned 100%, through experience, that this is a good move. 

It shows that you’re organized and that you respect not only yourself and your own time, but also hers. 

There’s really no downside to this. 

If a woman is so immature that this turns her off, you probably dodged a bullet anyway. 

Method #2: Ask For The Date, Then Drop Your Number

Now, while the above method is the ‘go to’ method I usually offer for men who are learning the ropes, my own personal technique differs a bit. 

Here’s the method I’ve personally developed and used for myself, especially once I got more experienced at the game—and honestly, I’ve had a lot more success with this technique. 

In fact, this was the technique that I used to snag my now-fiance—whom I just so happened to meet on a dating app. 

Here are the steps: 

1. Engage in Meaningful Conversation

As with the first method, start by building a rapport through engaging and meaningful conversation. Make sure there’s a sense of mutual interest and that the conversation flows naturally.

2. Propose the Date Directly

Once you feel a connection, propose a date directly within the app. For example: 

“I’ve really enjoyed our chat and I think it’d be great to meet up. How about we grab a drink this Friday?”

3. Confirm Date Details

After she agrees to the date, confirm the specifics like location and time. Ensure the plan is clear and mutually convenient.

4. Casually Drop Your Number

After setting up the date, casually drop your number into the conversation with confidence. Say something like:

“I’ve got to head off for now, but here’s my number [your number]. Feel free to drop me a text, I’d love to chat more before we meet.”

5. Maintain a Nonchalant Attitude

After you’ve left your number, don’t press further. This nonchalant approach shows confidence and a lack of fear of rejection, which is appealing.

6. Wait for Her Response

Give her the space to text you. This step is crucial as it allows her to show her interest and investment in the upcoming date. If she’s genuinely interested, she’ll text you.

7. Respond When She Texts

If and when she texts you, continue the conversation in a light and engaging manner. This builds more anticipation and comfort leading up to the date.

8. Reconfirm the Date

On the day before or the morning of the date, send a brief confirmation message. It could be as simple as:

“Hey [her name], just confirming we’re still on for tonight at [time] at [place]. Looking forward to it!”

9. Maintain Your Frame

Throughout this process, maintain the frame of a confident and self-assured individual. Your approach of not explicitly asking for her number, but instead offering yours, reinforces this dynamic.

This method subtly shifts the traditional dynamic of asking for a number. By confidently setting up the date and then giving her the option to reach out, you’re placing the ball in her court, demonstrating self-assurance and respect for her autonomy.

And trust me, women dig it. 

11 Key Mistakes to Avoid

avoid being generic when online dating

I made all of these mistakes while I was learning, and they probably cost me hundreds of matches, dates, and experiences with beautiful women. 

I’m sharing them with you so you can learn from my experiences without going through the pain all on your own. 

  • Generic Greetings: Avoid standard lines like “Hey” or “Hi there.” These are overused and unlikely to capture her interest amidst a sea of similar messages.
  • Focusing on Physical Compliments: Steer clear of opening with comments about her looks. This can come off as superficial and desperate. Focus instead on interests or hobbies mentioned in her profile.
  • Using Cliché Pick-Up Lines: While they might seem fun, pick-up lines are often perceived as insincere and impersonal. They rarely lead to meaningful conversations.
  • Being Overly Sexual or Inappropriate: Starting with sexual innuendos or overtly suggestive comments is a major turn-off for most women and can lead to immediate unmatching.
  • Copying and Pasting the Same Message: Avoid sending the same message to multiple matches. Personalization shows that you’ve taken the time to read her profile.
  • Coming on Too Strong: Messages that are too forward or desperate can be intimidating or off-putting. Keep the tone light and engaging, without pressuring for a response.
  • Not Reading Her Profile: Tailoring your message to something specific in her profile shows genuine interest. Ignoring her profile might make your message feel generic and unthoughtful.
  • Negging or Insulting: Avoid backhanded compliments or negging (insulting comments disguised as flirtation). These are seen as manipulative and disrespectful.
  • Being Overly Long-Winded: Keep your opening message concise. Long messages can be overwhelming for an opener and might not get read in full.
  • Double Messaging Too Soon: If she doesn’t reply immediately, give her time. Sending multiple follow-up messages can come across as needy or impatient unless the context specifically calls for it.
  • Not Being Yourself: The most important thing is to be authentic. Don’t try to be someone you’re not just to impress someone. Authenticity is key to forming a real connection.

What If You Hopelessly Suck at This ‘Tinder’ Thing?

How often should you text a girl man puzzled while holding phone his hand and

Communicating with women via text isn’t easy. 

But if you want to really level up those skills in a short amount of time, I’d recommend taking the OPTIONS Texting Course for men. 

This course is packed with the stuff men need to know to successfully text women. 

I’ve actually taken it. And yes, even with all of my experience, I can honestly say that I learned some techniques from it. 

So if you want to shortcut the process and learn the skills fast, I’d say—sign up and get it done. 

Texting women is a skill. And the faster you learn it, the faster you’ll get women begging you to let them come over and stay the night (instead of ghosting and flaking on you to sleep with Chad or Tyrone). 

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In wrapping up, remember that patience is key in the Tinder game. 

Beyond using the right openers and avoiding common pitfalls, it’s crucial to understand that not every match will lead to a conversation, and not every conversation will lead to a date. 

In fact, if you can manage to close 10% of your matches with real dates, you’re probably crushing it even more than the pros. 

Stay patient and persistent, and don’t let a few unresponsive matches deter you. 

Treat every interaction as a learning experience that’s bringing you one step closer to mastering the art of Tinder dating. 

Keep swiping, keep refining your approach, and most importantly, stay true to yourself. Your next great match could be just a swipe away. 

Go with grace, and never give up your power. 


What is the perfect conversation starter on Tinder?

There isn’t one “perfect” conversation starter on Tinder, as much depends on the individuality of both you and your match. 

However, the most effective openers tend to be those that are personalized, show genuine interest, and are engaging. 

A great way to start is by commenting on something specific in their profile, whether it’s a shared interest, a unique photo, or an intriguing bio detail. 

This shows that you’ve paid attention and are interested in them as a person, not just their appearance. 

Keep it light, respectful, and interesting to spark a conversation that could lead to more.

How do you start a flirty conversation on Tinder?

Starting a flirty conversation on Tinder requires a blend of humor, charm, and genuine curiosity. 

Begin by commenting on a unique detail from their profile in a playful way. For example, if their bio mentions a love of cooking, try something like: 

“I’m intrigued by your chef skills! If you were trying to impress with one dish, what would it be?” 

This approach is light-hearted yet shows you’re paying attention, setting the stage for a fun and engaging chat.

What is the best first message to a girl on Tinder?

The best first message to a girl on Tinder is one that’s engaging and reflects genuine interest, tailored to her profile. 

A great approach is to comment on a specific detail in her photos or bio that intrigues you. For instance, if her profile shows a love for travel, you might say:

“Your travel photos are amazing! Which destination was your favorite, and why?” 

This shows you’ve taken the time to look at her profile and are interested in her experiences, making for a more meaningful conversation starter.