Why Men Don’t Write to Curvy Women on the Internet

sexy woman wearing black dress and red shoes

Hi Evan,

I have been online dating for about two months and it’s been so-so thus far.   My problem is deciding how to list my body type.   I’m 5’3″ and an hourglass-ish size 10, so while I’m not obese, I’m definitely not “athletic and toned.”   I chose pictures that I think accurately show this.

Anyway, at first I listed myself as “A few pounds extra” thinking it was an honest description.   Well, two male co-workers were talking about online dating and mentioned that they’d never contact a girl that was in that class or “curvy”, because any time they’d met one in the past, she’d been much heavier than in her pictures.

I’m wondering if this is why guys will view me a lot, but won’t make contact. The guys who have made contact have been people that I probably would not have dated normally, i.e., no steady job or just a little odd.

Any suggestions?


On the next episode of Online Mythbusters, we will learn:

  • Why women don’t list their true weights or body types!
  • Why men avoid “curvy” women!
  • Why men look at you and don’t write to you!
  • Why odd men with no jobs contact you!

You have to be asking yourself — is it REALLY in my best interests to tell the truth if 95% of guys are going to dismiss me for doing so?

The good news, Nicci, is that all of the answers can be derived from the same exact technique — flipping things over to consider the other person’s point of view.

Let’s start with you, because a) you wrote me the note, and b) you’re an online dating anomaly — an honest size 10 who doesn’t claim to be athletic and toned.

However, after talking to your male co-workers and observing that you’re not being contacted, you have to be asking yourself — is it REALLY in my best interests to tell the truth if 95% of guys are going to dismiss me for doing so? This is the online dating dilemma that faces MILLIONS of people each day. If I’m a 5’4” man, I know that it’s going to be hard to get a date if I tell the truth. If I’m a 50-year-old man who makes less than $30,000/year, I’m going to be somewhat handicapped. And few people face more discrimination than women in their 50’s and 60’s, who only seem to get email from men who are MUCH older.

Most of these people are good people — and yet they give in to the temptation to lie. Why? Because telling the truth is a FAILING strategy. This is the explanation for why women don’t tell the truth about their bodies. Simply put, there’s very little reward for having integrity. At the very least, heavier women (like shorter men) feel that if they can convince someone to go out with them, they’d have a chance in person….

Except this isn’t true either, because most people feel duped by the disconnect between your description and real life stature. Heavier people almost always do better in “real life” than online.

Next myth to be busted: why men don’t go out with “curvy” women. Well, you touched on it yourself, Nicci, in your email. In their attempts to be honest (but not scare off men), women will click on descriptors like “a few pounds extra”, “curvy”,   or “voluptuous”. All are considered euphemisms for “fat” by men. This creates a vicious circle. Women know that men prefer thin, so they adjust their descriptions accordingly. Men have learned to mistrust these body types, and therefore only look at women who are “firm and toned”, “slim/slender”, or “athletic”. And when the slightly overweight woman shows up on a date with a man who was expecting “athletic”, both parties are in for a night of disappointment.

Focus on what you can control — YOU — and let go of what you can’t — MEN.

Why do men look at you and not write to you? First of all, I think that’s a problem that’s more in your head than in reality. Fact is, we all window shop online. How many men have you looked at? 1000? How many did you write to? 12? Should 988 men feel rejected because you didn’t initiate contact? Please. Ignore how many people look at you. It is misleading and can only serve as a tool that makes you feel rejected. If no one’s WRITING to you, however, there is something to think about. Which is why I’ve helped thousands of people rebrand and market themselves successfully online over the past nine years. Better photos, better essays, better usernames, better email technique. Do everything 25% better and it can make a remarkable difference in your life.

Still, no matter how much rebranding we do, life is still not going to be fair. Men are still largely going to prefer young, thin women. Women are still going to prefer tall, successful men. All we can do is tackle this confidently, and not get too thrown by the many bumps in the road. The man who wants you is going to WANT a curvy girl. No point in getting bent out of shape about the ones who prefer skinny chicks, y’know?

Finally, the last myth we’re gonna bust is that there’s something about your profile that’s attracting the wrong kind of men. I swear to God, I have heard this complaint every single day for nearly a decade. And it always baffles me. So let’s play the game I play with my clients on the phone:

Me: If you were to go to an airport and look around the terminal, what percentage of men would you date?

Her: I don’t know. 5%? 2%, maybe?

Me: Then why would you expect the percentage to be any higher online? If, by definition, 95% of men are wrong for you, it should be expected that many will be unemployed, uneducated, older and inappropriate. Get over it. They’re allowed to take a crack at you, and you’re allowed to ignore them. Focus your energies on attracting and maintaining the 5% that you want. THAT’s what we’ll do together.

And so it is, Nicci. Focus on what you can control — YOU — and let go of what you can’t — MEN.

Understanding this about online dating is essential to your success. And if you’ve struggled with the same frustrations as Nicci — not enough good men, all the wrong men writing to you — my Finding the One Online system is a one-stop-shop to get you the kind of attention you deserve.

Click here to learn more and kickstart your love life today.

Warmest wishes,

Your friend,


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  1. 241
    Angela Franklin

    Well I’m 5’2″ and 200 lbs I don’t have a tiny waist or flat stomach I do have wide hips huge breasts and stretch marks as well as ‘MEAT ON MY BONES’ considering Ice had 5 kids. Some ppl men and women are mean to big big short tall or skinny but we shouldn’t judge anyone person. I myself love that my husband is only 5’8″ and is like 220 hes my teddy bear but just the right height that I got perfectly   into his arms.

  2. 242

    I have a boyfriend but in the past when I was on Tinder I would purposely use very realistic photos. Ones where maybe I was outside all day with no make up on, hair not the best etc. people always post these photos that are so unrealistic. Every time I went on an actual date which was only a few they would always compliment my looks. Now whether they just thought they were going to get laid or whether they meant it I can’t say. But I’d rather exceed someone’s expectations as opposed to disappoint them. And if someone isn’t going to go out w me based on that realistic photo I have no desire to date them anyway. I’ve always had an hourglass figure since I was 12. I thought I was fat bc I wore a size 7 while my friends were wearing 0. Honestly, I’ve never ever had a problem getting a date w someone bc of this. Guys would always say they love(d) my ass. Took me a long time to realize that not being a size zero wasn’t a bad thing! I would always answer average on body type. I’m not athletic or toned but I’m not overweight either. Isn’t putting average or not putting anything at all a choice anymore?

    1. 242.1

      I’m size 1 or 2 with an hourglass figure. It has nothing to do what sizes you can wear. If you know how proportion or ratio works, you will figure out what I’m trying to convey to you.

  3. 243

    I have always hated when people write on their profiles that they don’t have any preference or they don’t mind what men or women look like as long as they have a nice personality because I’m sure everyone has a preference and surely they wouldn’t go out with just anyone all because they have a nice personality so I think people should be as honest about that as others should about their appearance. I was always honest about both my appearance and what I prefer in a man when I looked on dating sites but every man I met either lied about their looks, job and mostly everything and usually always wanted something else other than just a date or were just stalkers so I gave up in the end really because I am only twenty years old and a lot of people always asked why I was on a dating site when I am so young but I did it because I was sick of meeting   men at night clubs and wanted a serious relationship but no one on the sites took me seriously and we’re just as bad as boys my age so I guess I will just have to go about life and maybe I will have a serious relationship one day who knows but I won’t be trusting dating sites again.

  4. 244

    I’d like to add that you can say your size/ measurements. It can come off a little call-girl-esque. But in reality, if you want men to know that you’re indeed smaller than them and still cute although being a size 10 (gasp, I’m a size 12 and a BMI of 25.4 and no one calls me fat, even my doctor said “you don’t need to lose weight”), you can emphasize that you could fit in their pants.

    I also think it’s definitely worthwhile to state curvy, be honest, and make an effort to contact men yourself. Many men don’t get messaged a lot on dating sites, so they will check you out. At least you’re short enough that you can date a huge amount of the male population.

  5. 245

    It is the fashion industry that has changed the meaning of words. Voluptuous used to mean curvy like Sophia Loren, yet nowadays it  sEmma to mean morbidly obese. Curvy used to be a word that described Raquel Welch, but not anymore!

    Trying to do a search for a woman with a large frame body, but keeps it in shape. When I was living alone and trying to find a fit, strong, powerful, and healthy woman, both physically and mentally, it was impossible, so I started to search only women with pictures to resolve the problem.

    I have never fit the criteria for weight tables and I am sure this is the same for women too. I have always had a lot of muscle on my frame, so you cannot go by a table to match the general populous when looking for a frame like mine. At 5’11” and 200 lbs., I was over the table weight in high school!

    When I started working construction, I got even heavier (muscle weighs more than fat), so when I actually got down to my “ideal” weight table weight of 185 lbs, my face was sunken and my waist had about a ten pack. My Wife and also my Mother thought I was sickly looking!

    I have always been drawn to two distinctly different types of women: the petite, pert, tiny woman, and the muscular, large-boned, amazon woman. For me it mattered more if they were healthy and in shape far more than if they had a few extra pounds – their body had to fit their frame.

    At 5’0″ a 120 lb woman can have a huge roll of fat or be hard as a rock. A 5’10” woman can be slender at 160 lbs if it is muscle (a lot of crossfit woman fit here) or she could have two rolls between her hips and breasts.

    Stay physically active and you tend to fit your body frame size. Don’t listen to those stupid weight table recommendations, instead, walk daily and don’t shy away from being active, and your body will be firm.

    Firm and healthy is, for the most part, what fits sexy in almost every culture…that is how you will find a guy!


  6. 246

    I absolutely adore chubby or fat women; they just make me melt.   Big is beautiful!

  7. 247

    I haven’t been online dating long but have had no shortage of interest despite putting curvy as my body type. But when I’m looking at men’s profiles I don’t contact those looking for athletic toned body types. Had a friend tell me he puts that on his because of the number of woman calling themselves curvy   or just a few extra pounds being much larger than that. He did say he goes by the pic more than body description.

  8. 248

    Here’s what I’ve learned since becoming truly single and dating again. This applies to online dating:

    “slim” means what average used to mean. You’re not fat and have no obvious bulges. You could have nice hips and breasts.

    “Average” means a woman is 20lbs over weight–at least and the guy has a beer belly and has to bend over to see his feet and look in the mirror to find his pee pee.

    “Curvey” means the woman is obese by old terminology. She’s huge and it’s hard to distinguish where her hips end and her belly begins.

    “Large” is when you have a beached whale on your hands.   She’s easily 100-200lbs over weight. A guy in his catagory hasnt seen his feet in decades–let alone his penis.

    Face it, if you want to be attractive, you have to take care of yourself.

  9. 249

    What makes me sad about this post is not Evan’s assertion that the dating pool for larger women is smaller (that is a statement I’ve found to be true), but the negativity that I see from the commenters that describe women as less than a suitable human because of their weight.   Many daters, men and women alike, speak of falsehoods of their profile. They do this out of fear. I empathize with that fear. Furthermore, what one man views as “curvy” another can view as “fat”. I have been both a size 10 and a size 22 while dating. I got more “attention” smaller, but not necessarily more connections.

    You know what gets me connections? Pictures that are recent, accurate, full bodied, and in a variety of situations. I post one picture that I don’t like about myself on purpose. (Like the guy above stated he assumes the ugliest picture is the accurate one, I assume if you can take me at what I think isn’t flattering, then we should be OK.)

    Authenticity is all I can promise, and while I haven’t found my forever, I’ve found the more authentic I am about who I am holistically, then I have less drama, more meaningful connections, and am able to walk away from situations long before getting hurt.

  10. 250

    As far as the height issue goes..I am 5’3″ tall..I’ve managed to bring myself up to a near 5’6″ by wearing elevator or platform shoes.   I have 2 pairs of these..Brown and a two tone color.

    The hair issue wasn’t mentioned but I wear a toupee..I always wear a toupee whenever I step out my door actually.   I never know when I May meet her.

    Always wanting to look upbeat I shop for good clothing.. my lime green leisure suit is the latest attire I found to make that all important first impression.

  11. 251

    From OP “I’m 5’3”³ and an hourglass-ish size 10, so while I’m not obese, I’m definitely not “athletic and toned.”   I chose pictures that I think accurately show this.”


    This pretty much sums up my build.   I describe my figure jokingly to my girlfriends as a “45 minute glass”.   My waist is smaller than my hips,   but not quite “hour glass”, and I’m not especially busty.   But by no stretch of the imagination would I be considered obese or seriously overwieght.

    When I was on match, I could leave the body type blank, so I did.   I consider myself to be medium build, or a few (very few) extra pounds, depending on your preference.   Match did not have an option for “Medium” build, they had “about average” which is too open for interpretation.   That could mean average build for most women in my age group. And I do think I am thinner than most women in my age group, but not really slender.    I definitely did NOT want to say curvy or a few extra pounds.

    So I just posted a few full length or 3/4 length photos and let the guys decide what type of build I was.   I tried to post some “action” figures, such as me riding my bike in a charity ride, to show that I’m not sedentary as well.   A picture is worth a thousand words, so I decided to let the pictures do the talking.

    Does match now require you to list a body type ?   I was dismayed that I HAD to pick a height preference.   Other categories had a “no preference” option, but not height.   So I just selected the shortest and the tallest heights in the drop down box as my “preferred” range.



  12. 252
    Doc Boggle

    Fat women are men’s last resort, for the most part.   Fat is repulsive.

  13. 253

    You guys are so wrong! There is no hope for ladies like me.. I’m a pretty, curvy size 12/14 tall hourglass shaped lady, and men will never give me a chance once they meet me, even though my pictures are usually within a week or two. I am honest as I can be but they are disappointed 99% of the time. They just wanted smaller, and that will never be me (I run, workout, and eat healthy). Some of us just aren’t going to succeed there and probably won’t ever have what we want and deserve in love. I can’t fit in on the plus size dating apps either because I’m really not (even if match.com thinks I am). I gave up on it once and for all and can just be alone and do fine (I’m used to it).

  14. 254
    In Hiding

    I have committed the cardinal sin of attempting to date while fat. It doesn’t work for obvious reasons. So I’m not even going to try it anymore while I focus on my weight loss goals. Besides, a man would only be a distraction while trying to reach that goal and since I tend to struggle with emotional eating, I don’t need the ups and downs of dating to get me off focus. I can just live vicariously through the rest of you.

  15. 255
    In Hiding

    Be kind. Most people are fighting a battle you know nothing about. You don’t have to date a fat women but you don’t have to be a jerk, either.

  16. 256
    In Hiding

    I’m in a weight loss program and will probably end up having the surgery. I don’t know if it will be any easier when I drop significant amount of weight. In some ways, it’s been a security blanket to keep people from getting close. If I get male attention as a result of losing weight, I don’t know how I will take it. I don’t at all buy in to the fat acceptance movement, but there’s that tendency to say the only thing about me that’s changed is the weight, so why would you be any more interested in me now? If I wasn’t good enough before, I’m not good enough now.

  17. 257

    In Hiding,
    Now that you’ve started your weight loss journey, I’d like to share some things that may help with some of your concerns. Obviously, if you’re considering weight loss surgery, you’re planning to lose a considerable amount of weight, and as you go forward, you’re going fid that weight loss affects more than just your appearance.

    When we’re overweight, especially if we have been for a while, that affects not just our physical life but our emotional life as well, and because the change is gradual, we often don’t realize how much. In the same way when we start losing that extra weight, we change again, slowly but surely. Our energy level improves (especially when we’re able to add some exercise into our routine), and over time, we usually begin to feel more relaxed, our stress level begins to drop, and our sleep improves; we go to sleep more easily and awake more refreshed. Our breathing improves, and so does our heart function, and we notice after a while that we feel better overall. As our appearance changes, we’re likely to feel better and more comfortable with ourselves, and how we see ourselves. As we get closer to our goal, clothes fit better our body image improves, and with it our self-esteem. That of course, can’t help but improve our self confidence. When we reach our goal, we don’t just look better; our personality almost without us realizing it, has changed too, and others notice that, as much or more than they notice how different we look; the whole vibe we give off in interacting with others changes. It becomes more positive; guess how that affects the people we interact with, whether it’s in dating, or any other part of our lives. Yes, really, because while we feel like we’re the same person as we were before the weight loss we really aren’t; our basic personality will be largely the same, of course, but there will be noticeable differences, and others will notice that just as much as they notice the change in our physical appearance.

    There are pitfalls, of course. First of all, DON’T enter a weight loss program to please others; remind yourself as often as you need to (and that may be frequently, especially during the times when you hit those difficult times when progress toward your goal is slow) that you’re doing this for YOU, to make YOURSELF feel better. If other like you better in the end, consider that a bonus, not the primary objective. This is YOUR gift to YOU, period! Never lose sight of that! The other thing that may bother you a is that you say you’re been using being overweight as a defense mechanism (you can’t get hurt if you never get involved with anyone, right?) That, you’re going to have to make a choice about. You’re going to have to decide between walling yourself off in other ways, so that you never get hurt again, of taking a chance when the opportunity arises and hoping that in doing so you’re giving yourself at least some chance to love and be loved. I’m not going to sugar-coat this for you; it’s not going to be easy to take that chance, to let your walls down, to risk being hurt again. No one can offer you any guarantees on that; that’s just life, and if we’re actually out there living it, instead of just existing, we’re going to get hurt sometimes. That’s not ever fun, but we won’t die of it, either. So often we let fear based on what our past experience has been, keep us from enjoying our present. We start to imagine the worst, and that turns our fear into a great big fire-breathing dragon we can’t possibly confront; when the truth is that in reality, it’s nothing more than a scared little insignificant lizard looking for a crack to hide in. That’s the way fear is. Sometimes, we need to have some, just for self-preservation. Believe me, if I hadn’t been afraid when I was in combat in Vietnam,(at least when I had any time to think about it), not only would that have been insane, I probably wouldn’t be here now; I’m no fearless hero; just a survivor. That said, a lot of the things we fear in the social realm of life, from being hurt, or rejected, or embarrassed, are things we make far bigger and scarier than they need to be; just have courage(even when you don’t feel very brave) and walk right through it; it’s almost always not nearly as bad as you thought. Remember the turtle; she can pull everything in, close her shell up tight, and be safe; but she can’t even see where she wants to go, much less get there unless she takes a chance, sticks her head and her feet out and starts walking,

    I hope that helps, and wish you success on your journey. I believe you’ll find that in the end, it was worth the effort!

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