Dating is hard. That’s just a fact. Dating while queer is often even harder. When you’re a guy who’s attracted to people of the same gender, there are simply fewer instances in which you can serendipitously meet somebody and experience that romantic spark. Which is why gay bars and other inclusive spaces have become such an important part of life for people in the LGBTQ+ community, including gay and bisexual men.
Of course, if you’re a queer man looking for love, not every town has a gay bar that you can just head to whenever you’re in the mood to get your flirt on. And in the pandemic, meeting and mixing with a lot of people in a public setting is out of the question.
Enter: The Apps. Whether you’re looking for somebody fun to chat with, to swap photos, or make a connection with the goal of eventually meeting for a real-life date, we’ve got you covered. These are the 8 best LGBTQ-friendly dating and hookup apps for queer men. (When you find one you like and sign up for an account, make sure you follow these tips for taking a really great photo for your profile!)
Bonus: when you are ready for an-person meet-up with a person you met on one of these dating apps, check out our ideas for awesome first dates and second dates. You’ll look like a total romantic genius without breaking the bank.
OK, let’s get this one out of the way first. Grindr is so well-known as a gay dating and hookup app that even straight people have heard of it. We all know how it works; the home screen shows you a grid of guys near your location, you can chat, share photos, and send voice memos, and meet the love of your life—or the love of your afternoon, at least.
Scruff is very similar to Grindr in its grid functionality, but unlike Grindr, which has been criticized for perpetuating a „no fats, no femmes“ attitude among its users, Scruff was originally geared towards gay men of differing body types. Specifically: bears, otters, wolves, daddies, and other „tribes“ that find body hair and a more stocky built attractive.
Jack’d promises new users that they’ll be able to connect with „the most diverse community of gay, bi, trans, queer, and curious guys around the globe,“ and is popular among men of color. You can search by what a guy is into, his relationship status (for those looking to play), and the Discover tab lets you find profiles based on recent activity.
Unlike many gay dating apps which show you a grid of the guys nearest to you, Surge is more like Tinder, allowing users to swipe through profiles until they land on one they like. The „swipe right“ / „swipe left“ / „it’s a match“ functionality are exactly the same, so if nothing else, you won’t have to waste any time figuring out how the app works once you’ve downloaded it.
Adam4Adam started out as a popular desktop-based dating website for gay men. Remember those?
Anyway, now that nobody has time to sit down and log on to find a date, A4A is in the app game, serving up pretty much the same kind of user experience as other services like Grindr.
Into bears? Growlr really is where the wild things are. While even Scruff caters at least partially to guys with lean physiques, Growlr is specifically for bears, cubs, and dadbods.
In many countries where LGBTQ+ individuals are still persecuted, like Chechnya, the most widely used and well-known gay dating apps like Grindr have been banned. Hornet, which looks and works a lot more like a social networking platform than a dating app, provides a safer alternative for queer men in some locations (although it too has been prohibited in places like the United Arab Emirates).
Dating for transgender and nonbinary people can be a nightmare, even on queer apps which purport to be inclusive. Tser is a dating and hookup app specifically created for trans, enby and gender-fluid singles — including, for the purposes of this list, trans men who identify as gay or bisexual. Because everyone deserves a safe space to flirt.
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Join the world’s most exciting gay social network. With more free options than any other gay dating app, ROMEO is the best way to meet new people and have meaningful or more casual encounters. Get the free ROMEO App now and chat with lots of gay guys, nearby and worldwide. Create your profile and start chatting and video calling within minutes!10 ROMEO App features you’ll LOVE:● A fresh and intuitive design● Unrestricted list of guys online● Free unlimited chat and video calling● Lots of pictures and profile stats● Free powerful search options● See new guys in your area● See who recently came online● Hide your real GPS position● Set your location to anywhere in the world● Share your private pics for a limited timeROMEO, also known as Planetromeo or Gayromeo, is the world’s most exciting dating app and social network for gay and bi guys and trans people. We embrace diversity and support our global LGBT+ family. Our apps and website provide a friendly online space for gay guys to hang out, chat, meet and date.ROMEODates Friends Love● Website version also available● ROMEO App is for guys aged 18 and bear-magazine.com for considering the free ROMEO App! We’d love to hear from you guys, so don’t hesitate to leave us a review!Happy dating!Subscription Terms For In-app PurchasesSubscription Terms● Payment will be charged to your iTunes Account at confirmation of purchase.● Your subscription automatically renews and your account will be charged for renewal within 24-hours prior to the end of the current period unless auto-renew is turned off at least 24-hours before the end of the current period.● Any remaining portion of a free trial period, if offered, will be forfeited once you purchase an auto-renewing subscription.● We also encourage you to read our Terms and Privacy below.● You can manage your subscriptions at any time and auto-renewal can be turned off in your App Store account settings on your device after purchase by going to: Settings » iTunes & App Store » Apple ID » View Apple ID » bear-magazine.com
Erst ständer, dann gesicht: diese dating-app zeigt dir einfach alles!
Während es auf den üblichen Gay-Dating-Portalen, wie Gayromeo oder Grindr, nicht gerade üblich ist, direkt mit dem Ständer ins Haus zu fallen, kommen STNDR-User gar nicht anders rein.
Das Gesicht wird hier nämlich erst präsentiert, wenn beiden Männern der Penis des anderen zusagt und sie sich ein „Match“ geben. Ganz einfach also.
„Bei den meisten Apps geht es doch in Wirklichkeit auch nur um Sex. Oh, du siehst aber sympathisch aus. Was hast du für Hobbies? Bist du öfter hier in der Stadt? Das ist doch verlogenes Blabla. Wir lassen das Vorspiel einfach weg“, erklärt einer der Chefs. Die Intention der Macher sei es gewesen, eine Plattform zu bauen, die sich anfühle, als würde man im Darkroom das Licht anmachen.
Die Nutzer der Seite sind laut „STNDR“ nahezu durchweg begeistert. „Tinder ist was für Pussies. Jetzt gibt’s STNDR!“, schreibt zum Beispiel einer. Ein anderer ist sich sicher: „Jeder Arsch hat Bock auf STNDR!“ Na dann…
Online ist die Seite übrigens erst seit wenigen Tagen, seit der CSD in Köln startete. Inzwischen gibt es STNDR bereits unter anderem in Köln, Berlin, New York, San Francisco, Tel Aviv und Madrid.