Gen Z used Tinder to vent, protest, celebrate, commiserate, laugh, but above all else, to date.
2020 might have felt like a hot mess, but Tinder members aged 18-25 didn’t write it off. In an unprecedented year, when faced with new obstacles, Tinder members adapted and got creative about how they connected. This Autumn, messages and use of the Swipe feature at Tinder are up double-digits from the end of February.
While IRL was on pause, members took to Tinder to share 2020’s biggest cultural moments. Folx used Tinder to chat, meet, hang out and swap TikToks and shrugs (🤷), all while staying socially and mostly physically distant. Tinder bios were a way for members to show who they are and what they care about, and profiles have never been more creative, dynamic or revealing than they were in 2020. And though they were thrown more curveballs than ever, they still managed to unapologetically be themselves.
Looking at a year’s worth of Tinder bios, the themes of creativity and resilience stand out. Here are the 10 most essential trends that happened on Tinder in 2020.
10 UK Trends on Tinder in 2020 that are a Total Mood
- Celebrity Cummings and goings. When the Dolly Parton challenge became an overnight sensation, Tinder members got involved, with 26% more mentions of the iconic country singer in bios in January than six months later. On a less glamorous note, Dominic Cummings made an appearance even in Tinder bios, peaking in bios mentions in May, with lines such as: It’s a long drive to Barnard Castle, who’s Cumming with me? after his infamous trip.
These famous faces were trending in Tinder bios this year:
- Dolly Parton
- Dominic Cummings
- Boris Johnson
- Meghan Markle
- Prince Harry
- Captain Sir Tom Moore
- Kanye West
- David Attenborough
- Joe Exotic
- Carole Baskin
- The nation made some noise 👏 for our NHS. Grateful to frontline workers, Brits clapped every Thursday and with 122% more mentions of ‘NHS’ in May, than at the beginning of the year, the noise could be heard loud and clear through Tinder bios too.
- Festivals were out and feasting was in. With both our on-screen entertainment, Love Island, and on-stage crowd-pleaser, Glastonbury, being called off in March, there were 4x more mentions of ‘cancelled’ in bios, compared to the month before. So it comes as no surprise that when the ‘Eat Out To Help Out’ scheme launched in August, members embraced it with it being seen across bios up and down the country.
- Passport expanded dating horizons, travel bans notwithstanding. Travel was the most used term by Tinder members in the first three months of the year. When Prince Harry and Meghan left the UK for good ✈️, with ‘Meghxit’ peaking in bios in January and February. With borders closed, 16% of members used Tinders’ Passport feature in April to travel the world and meet their quarantine match, a 7x increase from 2019 averages. Passport shout outs looked a bit like this: No flight, no problem. Exploring the world with Tinder Passport instead.
- Support for Black Lives Matter ✊🏿 became a must for many matches. Mentions of BLM grew 55x in 2020, exceeding use of the term ‘hook-up’ by years’ end. Starting in June, Tinder quickly filled with bios that said things like: “How much do I need to say this? Pineapple on pizza is a must, climate change is real and Black Lives really do Matter”.
- Pandemic pick up lines took over Tinder. Mentions of ‘quarantine & chill’ took off in March, as lockdown woes inspired creative one-liners in the spirit of Let’s be like covid and catch each other or Wash your hands so you can hold mine.
- TikTok x Tinder was a perfect match. TikToks on Tinder became a way to 1) share taste, by asking matches to send some all-time favourite TikToks, 2) to show off their moves, by sharing TikToks they’d made themselves, and 3) show a little flex by bragging that they’re ‘TikTok famous’. TikTok mentions grew 8x in 2020 and peaked in May.
- Masks became a dating essential. Members were ready to mask up and meet up, with mask mentions up nearly 10x in 2020 and ‘wear a mask’ mentioned 5x more in July than June, inspiring bios such as: Who’s down to meet in the park w masks on? and Masks on during sex. Just make sure you know how to put it on bc some members sent warnings such as If your mask is around your chin IDFWU 😷.
- Animal Crossing islands helped keep it flirty from 2 metres apart. Dating creativity peaked as Folx skipped bars in favour of Animal Crossing islands. Mentions of AC peak in May, during which members may have come across profiles such as: What if we met up to watch the sunset….on my animal crossing island. Not kidding.👀
- Tinder was the place to share a collective 🤷🏽♀️🤷🏿♂🤷 at 2020. The most-used emoji on Tinder in 2020 was 🤷🏽♀️, as members showed uncertainty and ambivalence about the future, “Maybe I’ll get to meet you in person in 2020, but who really knows? 😂 🤷🏻♀️”
UK – 10 Emojis of 2020
10 of the fast-growing emojis on Tinder that capture how we flirted and dated in 2020:
- Unsure at pretty much every moment of this year, Tinder’s members shared a collective 🤷
- Members showed their support for Black Lives Matters, by including🖤 and✊🏿 in their bios
- United in a clap for our careers, Tinder members shined a 🌈 to say thank you to our NHS
- Sourdough baking 🍞 and supermarket shopping 🛒 were the highlight of many Tinder member’s days in lockdown
- Tinder’s members missed out on IRL graduations🎓 , but they found a way to celebrate from home instead 🍷
- Mask wearing 😷 became the ultimate deal breaker for dating in 2020
10 UK Essential Dating Anthems of 2020
These 10 trending songs on Tinder show how we expressed our 2020 emotions with a match:
- Blinding Lights – The Weeknd
- The Box – Roddy Ricch
- ROCKSTAR (feat. Roddy Ricch) – DaBaby
- Life Is Good (feat. Drake) – Future
- WAP (feat. Megan Thee Stallion) – Cardi B
- Toosie Slide – Drake
- Roses (Imanbek Remix) – SAINt JHN
- Godzilla (feat. Juice WRLD) – Eminem
- For The Night (feat. Lil Baby & DaBaby) – Pop Smoke
- Dreams (2004 Remaster) – Fleetwood Mac
Methodology: All data above comes from Tinder profiles. Data was pulled from Jan – Nov 15 for both 2019 and 2020 to make year over year comparisons possible. Items cited in each list are in no particular order.