With half of all single people now using some of the best online dating sites to find love (or at least quick, no strings sex – hello, Tinder), long gone are the days when Internet dating was seen as embarrassing or cringe-worthy.Now its about as normal (but way more fun) as Internet banking.
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She has big, brown eyes; thick, dark hair that flows below her shoulders; cheekbones that could cut glass; and a curvaceous figure that has no trouble attracting guys.
Despite that, Candice joined dating site Seeking Arrangement.com, where she and 4.5 million other "beautiful, successful people fuel mutually beneficial relationships," according to its website. Then consider its tagline: "12 girls for each guy...spoil them and they spoil you back." Over the past three years, Candice, 26, has dated a real-estate developer, a venture capitalist and an attorney.
And 64 percent of all singles say finding someone with common interests is their top criterion in a partner. Typing "cats" in You Tube gives you 13.2 million videos, ranging from cats being funny to cats being jerks to cats just being..
That's why a dating site for cat lovers just made sense to Sonny Crane, who founded "Do you want to meet someone who doesn't like cats?
For her part, Jaime hopes her next boyfriend doesn't want her to participate in player-versus-player games. He was shy and felt out of place on mainstream dating sites because, he believes, he doesn't look like a movie star. "I don't have huge muscles." So he decided to launch a service for guys who -- like him -- have money and are willing to be generous with it. Candice says she enjoys being with the older, self-reliant men she typically meets there.
Silvia, a 30-year-old translator of Russian and Romanian living in Miami, says she joined rival Sugar after ending a relationship over finances. "I'm so used to the role reversal, I don't think I would know where to start." That's great for now, but if Candice ever changes her mind, there's Cougar Life.com, the "dating site for younger hot men to meet sexy older professional women!
"It's no different for a woman who's home taking care of the kids." Seeking Arrangement is not just another Match.com, Tinder or e Harmony, which serve up a one-size-fits-all approach to dating. Furry pairs up folks who like to dress up as anthropomorphic animals.
Candice's site of choice specifically matches "generous sugar daddies" with "attractive sugar babies." It's just one example of online dating services geared to singles with specialized tastes. Star Trek fanatics looking to do the Vulcan mind-meld thing can search for true Trekkie love on Trek
"If you're choosing someone based on something that's core to you, then by all means," she says.
Such specialized dating sites "make the idea of revealing yourself to your partner a lot easier than on a generic website." Be warned, though: The mutual enjoyment of, say, Star Trek, Nascar racing or Russian literature doesn't make that person your perfect mate.
"I'd rather be single than stressed out by that," she says.