I tried out the UK’s biggest exclusive dating app and this is what I learnt

Being a man in 2018 who is looking to find somebody means that you can be sure of one thing and one thing only – swiping, swiping, endless swiping. Matches come along every couple of days and when you do get paired up, often conversations will trail off – or not even begin at all.

This is where The Inner Circle comes in. A selective dating app, it ‘connects ambitious, like-minded people’ by curating the people who can access the platform and ‘ensuring compatibility and mutual interests prevail’.

It’s been a few months since I last dated somebody, so having tried out the alternatives and found none of them any good, I decided to give The Inner Circle a go, here’s what I learnt.

When you first hear about an ‘exclusive dating app’ it’s only natural that your mind is drawn to riches and glamour – you assume it’s an app offering the dating equivalent of the VIP section of your city’s biggest night club, but the reality of The Inner Circle is something different.

The app requires you to submit your job title and a photo of yourself so you can be vetted by the company’s in-house team, which is fundamentally a good thing for ambitious men who know how to conduct themselves.

‘ conversation openers and atrocious ‘ctrl c + ctrl v’ chat up lines. It being exclusive means doing away with all of that – and for men who actually have something interesting to say that means you’re a lot less likely to get lost in the fuckboi crowd.

The vetting process seems to create a more serious approach to dating than you might get elsewhere. Women on the app seemed career focused and driven. It didn’t take a genius to tell that they could do without the usual bullshit and weren’t going to have time for the picture of you half-cut at Bestival five years ago, or a half-arsed bio you’ve not put any effort into.

To be fair, this could be advice for any dating app, but I think it’s especially true with The Inner Circle

The app pulls in your pictures automatically from Facebook, but if you’re the type of guy who only uploads a profile pic every couple of years, I would recommend going through and pulling any shots of you looking battered when you were 16 – then uploading some better ones.

Instead of the default Facebook pics, I went for a picture of me on holiday in Europe, another of me at a friend’s gig, and myself standing on a balcony with a cityscape of London behind me. I’ll leave it to you to analyse what I was trying to project.

Probably the most innovative thing about The Inner Circle is the focus it trans chat room apps puts on events. The impetus of this is clear, the apps creators want you to meet up with the people you’re talking to rather than be pen pals.

Their team creates exclusive events they host around the world on a monthly basis, being an exclusive app these take place in some of the world’s best locations. A quick look around the app’s ‘discovery’ feature showed me that I could meet up with girls in London in the kinds of places I’d usually hang out in anyway.

The makers of the app talk about it offering ‘quality over quantity’ and even if this might come off slightly snobbish at first read, in reality, their approach is more about you as a user being realistic about what you want from your love life in your 20s.

The first person I matched with was a ‘bookings editor’ which is pretty close to my own job title – and we immediately found something in common discussing our recent visits to New York and what we’d read on our travels – which goes to show how good the app is at matching you with people who share similar values and interests.

Attractive women especially are put off responding to anyone on applications like Tinder because they’re being inundated with aubergine emojis, ‘dtf 😉 ?

You’re a lot more likely to find ‘marketing managers’, ‘models’, ‘account managers’ and ‘doctors’ when you’re scrolling down the app than you are on competitor apps, which, if that’s where you are too, can only be a good thing.

Like anything in life, dating is as much about how much you’re willing to put into it as it is about anything else. The Inner Circle is better than its competitors if you’re looking to meet ambitious and attractive people. After a few days of using the app, I’d got to the point where I could right to take things offline and into the real world.

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