Hinge users looking to retire their profile might first want to consider one final trick: getting the app to give you a fresh start.
If you’re an adult human, chances are you or someone you know has used a dating app. But you also probably know that many people feel like “the apps” and the dating world have become, well, bad in recent years. That can be true also for Hinge, though the app remains hugely popular, especially in bigger cities.
Like other dating apps, Hinge pools together the number of singles that fit into the demographic you’re looking for (age, location, etc.) and shows you each profile one-by-one based on an undisclosed algorithm. You can show interest in a profile with a like, or pass with a single tap. But there’s only so many singles in one area, and if you’ve been on the app for a while or are essentially an active user, you may find that you’re running out of quality suitors.
But there’s a catch there: Say you passed on someone’s profile many months ago, who’s to say that person won’t update their profile to include more recent photos or a wittier biography? What if you’d like the new profile, or maybe your interests and tastes have evolved? Or maybe the algorithm has gotten a bit too good at determining what you’re looking for, and it wants you to pay to like certain people.
That’s where the “fresh start” comes in. This is not by any means a new feature, but it is is, in my estimation, underutilized by those who feel like the dating pool is bad and would prefer instead to walk into the sea. Also, we’re in the midst of what dating apps consider to be an especially busy season. So, maybe now’s a time to revisit some of those old write-offs.
To access the “fresh start” option, you’ll have to go through the initial steps of deleting your Hinge account. Under settings, go to “Delete or Pause Account.” Say you’re not happy with the experience when it asks why you’re leaving Hinge and you’ll be met with the fresh start pop-up that includes a graphic of the Hinge logo looking up at what appears to be a number of sunflowers that were “X’ed” at one point. It’ll read: “Dating isn’t a perfect science. With Fresh Start, you can reset your Discover feed while keeping your profile and matches.”
If you accept the fresh start, you’ll see your Hinge logo friend driving a lawnmower over those grown out flowers and new ones will start to sprout. You don’t have to go full scorched earth and start all over with your current prospects and profile, but you do have the option for a new algorithm. Be warned: Not everyone gets the option to go through the fresh start, and if you go through the delete steps too quickly, you may end up accidentally deleting your account.
Some users say that the fresh start is giving better options and leading to more online connections. “We coach a lot of people and as soon as they do the reset on Hinge, they’ll go from having zero to maybe a few matches here and there and then all of a sudden within 10 minutes having 10 new matches with people that they’re actually excited about,” says Marin Haugo, a content creator and dating coach in New York City who runs Maar Dating Club. On Hinge’s side, Haugo sees it partially as “a last ditch effort to keep the customer.” (Hinge declined to comment for this story.)
“All of a sudden you go and do the reset and then Hinge is like, ‘Oh wait, here are a bunch of matches that are actually what you’re looking for,’” she says.