Why Does He Put Me On His Favorites List And Never Write To Me?


I belong to a dating website that has “winks” and “hotlists” as features. One thing that confuses me to no end is why a man would wink and/or hotlist me, but never write! On a few occasions, I have written to these men to interact with them, but they have not written back. Some of them still continue to “hotlist” me even weeks later.

What gives?


Dear Sylvia,

Do you have a pantry? Somewhere that you store food that you’re not planning on eating right this second?

That’s what a hot list is for men. A pantry to keep track of all the lovely ladies who may have caught their eyes while browsing.

Being put on a hot list is better than not being put on a hot list, but, in and of itself, the gesture means very little. Essentially, it means “maybe”. You haven’t been eliminated from contention, but there’s no guarantee you’re going to get an email. So don’t take it as some sort of promise ring. In fact, don’t take it as anything.

This is a huge problem with online dating and I only know because I’ve experienced it myself. You go on Match.com, see that you’ve been browsed 518 times, but you’ve only received three emails and five winks. This registers in our brains like this:

510 people just rejected me.

This is not remotely true, but this is how we feel; this is what we believe. We take everything so personally that we never bother to consider the logic of online dating.

Consider that you’ve probably browsed through 500 men — most of whom didn’t interest you. You may have put them on your favorites list. Maybe not. But the point is that you’ve looked at 500 guys and written to none of them. Should each and every one of those guys feel hurt that you browsed them without making contact? I should hope not. Yet this is what we do. It would be like a store owner getting upset when someone window shops but doesn’t buy. Sometimes, we’re just browsing; other times, we’ve got our credit cards out and are geared up to buy. Online dating is filled with browsers and lookie-loos and people who have profiles but are not currently paying for the site. I’m not kidding when I say that this comprises over half of the people online.

So if 50% of the people are not even potential buyers, that leaves 50% of the browsers who are. Factor in that you’re only going to be interested in 10% of that 50%, and, well, who exactly are you missing?

Nothing, I assure you.

But I hear you when you say that you want certain guys to actively write to you. … You stated that you’ve written to them but have gotten no reply. That could mean any number of things, but most likely, it’s that he’s busy with the women who are his “favorite” people on his hot list. And if those women don’t pan out, maybe he’ll work his way down to you. That’s nothing personal. That’s reality. Men think they have options — and they’re going to try to exercise them, from the hottest perfect 10’s on backwards. It’s a shame, but that’s what they do.

Most guys have hot lists with over 100 people on it. They’re completely unwieldy and completely unconsidered. It’s like men are highlighting lines in a particularly riveting textbook that they’ll probably never read again. Because either they a) forget about the women on their hot lists and keep searching for new blood, or b) they plow through those women indiscriminately with winks or form letters.

You see, Sylvia, the dirty little secret is that most of the guys who are disappointing you are not having any success on these sites either.

You want them, they want other women, and around and around we go.

There’s only one way to ensure that this cycle stops.

Do things differently.

Don’t blame men. (even if they suck)

Or Match.com. (even if it’s chaotic)

Or age. (even if it’s unfair to be judged for it)

Or anything else that you can’t fix.

Do something different.

Benjamin Franklin said it best:

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.”

I’ve quoted that in both of my books and I’ve never been more convinced that it’s true.

And if that quote isn’t working for you, how about: “Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it” ?

If you’re frustrated at online dating, you only have two choices: keep going or quit and hope that you meet your soulmate in “real life”. The latter happens all the time in the movies but not so much when you’re over the bar scene, your friends are all married, and you work ten hours a day in a small office with people you shouldn’t/wouldn’t date.

On the other hand, you can try to make the most of your online dating experience — and you can have FUN doing it. And when I say FUN, I’m not kidding. I’m talking about jumpstarting your love life, being able to choose who YOU want to date and actually dating them.

What’s the secret?…

Do something different.

Try a different website.

Get a brand new photo.

Create a one-of-a-kind profile that attracts the right people.

Learn a whole new emailing technique that gets results.
Heck, you can even get FREE dating advice just by signing up here and reading to your heart’s content.

Imagine if you had an amazing photo, amazing essays, and amazing dating skills that allowed you to better understand the opposite sex.

Imagine how powerful you’d be.

Imagine how many options you’d have.

Imagine how little you’d get upset because you knew what was really going on, and how to persevere anyway.

Listen, I didn’t plan to write this entry to mention my services, but every time I get a letter like Sylvia’s, it’s a wake-up call.

There are tons of resources out there for people who want to fall in love. The few people who tap those resources are the ones who get all the best results.

So thank you, Sylvia, for asking a very important question that tons of people want to know the answer to. The short answer would be that men hotlist tons of people so don’t take it personally. But that wouldn’t make for much of a blog post, now would it? 🙂

Thanks for reading and I hope you feel inspired to do something to make those guys want to write back to you today!

Join our conversation (35 Comments).
Click Here To Leave Your Comment Below.


  1. 21

    Number 1 recommendation for everyone to get noticed on online dating sites – a headshot photo which shows a smiling happy person.   No hats, no grainy blurred images, no stern looks.   Come on now – you want people to think that you will be easy to talk to, approachable, and happy.
    Have close friends look at your profile before posting.   Let them tell you the truth.
    And guys – keep your shirt on and no boats, planes, motorcycles or cars.   A dog or kid shows that you can relax. A photo with your mother is kinda scary.   Finally, check your language for any sign of neediness or poor,pitiful me.

  2. 22

    I recently joined a site for the “50 +” crowd (am 55) and took my time authoring a truthful profile and providing clear, diverse photos. So far the response has been overwhelming which has totally surprised me. However, I have only reached out to two ladies because 1) they took the time to also provide clear, current and multi situational photos, 2) their profiles were very specific regarding what type of relationship they’re seeking and what their interests are and 3) they write well. Basic I know, but it speaks volumes to me about their intellectual level. Yes, it would be disingenuous to say I don’t “profile” as first image impressions determine whether I read further or delete (and immediately delete any with no picture(s)). Also, in my profile, I specifically state that I’m not a pet person, yet I receive numerous views from women holding a dog–I wish there was an additional filter to screen out profiles with pets. Don’t know where this will go but admire everyone who puts themselves out there.

  3. 23

    I get it now ….   if a guy sends me a “wink”, and I send him a brief email back, he cannot reply until he is a subscriber.So, it’s highly likely that those guys are just too cheap to pay for a $12 per month subscription.   LOL.   I won’t stress about this any more. But it irritates me that both Match and Eharmony “hide the ball” as to who is and is not a paid subscriber.   Whereas another site I have been on actually places a note on the profile.   That means a lot to me when I see a guy’s profile.   If he is a paid subscriber, he is obviously committed to meeting someone and is also not a total cheapskate.   LOL  

  4. 24

    I have been on dating site for about 12 months, yes i do get a lot of winks, sometimes emails of which if i dont connect to there profile or photo, I dont do anything, as i feel if they are interested they sure would email. One thing i am very sure of is how do you know they are scammers,as i know there is very genuine ones. I have been send emails that eventually turn out to be scammers of which has given me the knowledge what red flag to look out for. Also just to say to everybody. The site called pig busters, put in there email address and that will show if scammer or not. I have not been put off by on line dating as i am sure the true and genuine gentleman is there. Good luck everybody in your search.     

  5. 25

    We all look at the photo first, if we like the photo what we see, then we read the profile.

    To wink i feel is to say thank you for looking at your profile, but sorry we live to far apart etc, or not quite what i am looking for. If they were interested they would surely email to find out more about you.

    I always send a message back to the ones that has given a very good complement by email. But then end to say good luck in your search,if i am not interested in taking this further.

    A favourite   i feel, yes i loved your photo and your profile and again, live to far apart for a relationship and if they have favoured you then why not emails to connect..

      The comment was good that yes they should show if subscribed, That they are willing to show they want this as much as we do. I also dont entertain none photos to when we have put every effort in preparing our.        

  6. 26

    I don’t really see the problem… at least you are being added as a favorite. If you like them why not try in get in touch, girl power and all that.

  7. 28
    Theron Ware

    I’m a guy and this happens to me far too much! I especially hate when several women wink at me or favorite me only to have them claim in their profile that “I’m not paying   for the service but you can send me a message to my personal email account! Can you say SCAM?!

  8. 29

    Great article to read and absorb!   Guess men do the same thing that us women do, who would have thought!   The fact that it takes time, tons of time and rejection (real or not) is a hard ego hit but neccessary.   Getting past the tire kickers and window shoppers on both sides seems to be the killer!   I suppose it’s time for a reality mirror check, an inventory of what is available to offer is all we can do afterall, you can’t do that for someone else.


  9. 30

    Then wouldn’t the definition of insanity be failing at online dating and continuing? Yet we keep plugging away, like something (maybe that relationship status, HA) is going to change.


    Wouldn’t at some point writing to men be prudent? We are expected to sit like peaches on the branch, but no one is picking.

  10. 31

    I hate when people with a free profile who don’t intend to sign up send a wink knowing that they can’t respond if you answer them back with a wink or otherwise. Whether you’re “using” them to help you decide whether to sign up, or just don’t care that you’re wasting their time, it’s incredibly rude. And the fact that the person doesn’t know you have a free account (and that it’s why you didn’t answer), just makes matters worse. Write in your profile that you have a free account, and don’t initiate any kind of contact you can’t reciprocate if responded to!

  11. 32

    I think it’s odd for guys to do this, but I know men are completely visual and are motivated by attraction.   I’ve had guys that I’d NEVER be interested in ever putting me on some list.

    I think more guys should try to adhere to saving the page/bookmarking it on their browser, so it doesn’t alert the person that they’ve been put on some lame list.

    Most women think that being put on a list as an adult on a dating site is lame and can be kind of creepy (if the guy keeps constantly staring at your profile with no contact).   Even if the guy is really attractive and he favorites with no contact, it can be lame.

    Whatever happened to being an adult and acting like one – to stop all the stupid lameness with lists that 99.9% of these guys will not even be able to date in real life.   Many go online and have delusions of grandeur instead of being realistic about their actual dating range.

  12. 33

    I’m on a site where I have been ‘favourited’ by several women whose photos are way out of my league. When I say hello, I get no response. But When my subscription ran out, they contacted me. Odd eh? I suspect the dating site is manipulating users, to make them re-subscribe.

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