Face It: ‘Mask Fishing’ Is a Dating App Trend That’s Not Going Away Any Time Soon

Nothing can stop people from dating. Not even the COVID-19 pandemic. But that doesn’t mean that the virus currently ravaging the entire world hasn’t affected the way people date.

To wit: the latest dating trend is called “mask fishing,” and it involves posting a face mask selfie on your dating profile. There are many theories for while this trend has taken hold. Some think people look more attractive in a mask. (We wouldn’t go that far; people certainly look more mysterious in masks.) Others use masks to hide their flaws (what came first: the mask or the maskne?). And of course, some feel that by posting a pic in a mask, they demonstrate to potential mates that they are taking the pandemic – and public health – seriously.

But there’s a contingent that seems to think wearing a mask in a dating app profile is misleading. So says AdultFriendFinder, which has prohibited users from exclusively wearing face masks in their profile pictures. The site claims users are wearing masks as a method of concealment.

Maybe…but is that a bad thing? It seems to us that thanks to the abundance of images available on social media, nobody has any secrets anymore. Maybe wearing a mask in your profile pic is the new form of the old-fashioned (and seriously underrated) “slow reveal.” Besides, if all you’re looking for is a casual hookup, but still want to be safe, you and your date should be wearing masks together anyway (even during sex). Who needs to see anyone’s chin or teeth if you’re just going to spend 30 minutes together bumpin’ uglies, then part ways forevermore?

On the other hand, if you’re one of the hopeless romantics using dating apps in search of The One, then, yeah, you want to look your mate in the mouth. (Wouldn’t want to pass bad teeth on to the next generation, after all).

Our take: post both masked and maskless pics. Given that we’ve got months more of safety precautions to go before a coronavirus vaccine is widely available, we should get used to seeing the objects of our desire both naked-faced and masked-up. The more we normalize – and even sexualize – mask-wearing, the safer we’ll all ultimately be.

Cover Photo: Sri Maiava Rusden (Getty Images)

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