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Best gay dating sites

LGBTQ couple
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

In addition to apps and sites like Tinder and OkCupid, the LGBTQ+ community now has a host of new and more specialized sites that create a safe and open forum for users who identify as LGBTQ+ to express themselves. 

If you identify as LGBTQ+, you may know how hard it is to find a partner, and that the internet can be a scary place full of disrespectful and sometimes harmful comments. Thankfully, platforms like HER and OkCupid are leading to way to make the community feel more included and safe. If you're looking for love online, these are the best LGBTQ+ dating sites you can sign up for now. 

1. HER

HER

(Image credit: HER)

HER

Best for queer women

Specifically for queer women
Has for matching and friendship requests
Functions in part like a social media feed
Can only sign up using social media accounts
Must pay for premium features

One new dating scene app caters specifically to queer women. HER, available for free in both the Apple App Store and Google Play, serves as a place where female-identified and non-binary people can connect to find both friends and dates. 

You can sign up using your Facebook or Instagram account and swipe through profiles to find people in your area. The app is also a place to coordinate and find queer events like parties and meetups. 

User profiles show you photos, names, a person's sexual preference and physical attributes. Much like Tinder, once you match with a person, you can chat in the app's messaging component.

There's also a user feed feature in the app that's similar to Facebook. Along with a dating profile, users post information about their day-to-day lives, likes and dislikes. One of the app's most unique features is its "relationship mode," which you can turn on to let other users know you're only looking for friendship, not a date. 

Take note, though: The app's 3.9 out of 5 star App Store rating (as of December 2018) is far from perfect. As such, the app might not be for everyone. It also has a 2.5 star rating in Google Play, with users noting glitches in the interface. 

In addition, you have to pay for some features, and some people didn't like that they only found that out after downloading the app. That aside, HER is a safe online community for queer woman to connect.

2. Grindr

Grindr

(Image credit: Grindr)

Grindr

The best dating app for gay dating

Extremely popular among gay, bi, trans, and queer people
Easy sign-up process
Free to use
High volume of fake profiles

Grindr is the most popular app for gay dating. It is essentially the Tinder for gay dating specifically: it's free to use and it's easy to create a profile. However, this means the pool of users may be both over-saturated and riddled with bots and fake profiles. 

Like Tinder, it has acquired a reputation for being more of a hookup app than a dating app, but Grindr doesn't restrict your options – and with the large pool of men on the app, there's definitely a chance someone will share your interests and desires. 

The site also sits close to the top of our list because it's easy to use and access, and creating a basic profile is free (with a premium, paid-for subscription available).

In terms of popularity, no other LGBTQ+ app matches Grindr. While there may be other apps whose features cater better to your needs, Grindr has sow widely spread that men of all types with a wide variety of interests can be found on the app. It's not for everyone, but it would be hard to find someone who hasn't at least tried using the app. 

3. OkCupid

OKCupid

(Image credit: OKCupid)

OkCupid

Best for everyone

Inclusive of LGBTQ+ community
Easy to use
Cheap to upgrade from free version to paid A-list premium service
Signing up is free, so it's likely that many people are not tending to their profiles

OkCupid has recently gone through a major rebranding, and the company has made sure to advertise the fact that it is all-inclusive: it's not just for hetero-normative individuals, and the LGBTQ+ community is prominently represented in its new ads. The company is also true to its word: when you create your profile, the site offers 12 gender identities and 20 sexual orientations that you can use to describe yourself. 

Because OkCupid isn't specifically made for the LGBTQ+ community, many people may feel uncomfortable dating in a space that doesn't address their particular concerns. 

However, many may not be aware the app offers a "I don't want to be see or be seen by straight people" option, which may help eliminate most creepy or unsavory messages they would have received without that option. 

Unfortunately, the options for "I'm looking for" are still limited to "men," "women," or "everybody." Hopefully, for the LGBTQ+ community, this is a fix planned for the future. 

4. Chappy

Chappy

(Image credit: Chappy)

Chappy

The discrimination-free community

The community is moderated 24/7 for an discriminatory language
Users aren't given enough space to provide more-than-basic information about themselves

Chappy markets itself as "the relationship app" for gay men in stark opposition to Grindr, which, like Tinder, is seen as more of a "hookup" app. But its best selling point is the 24/7 community monitoring that ensures that all members feel safe when connecting with other men. It's also one of the fastest growing apps for gay men, and has been backed by Bumble and its shareholders. 

Chappy's monitoring is so rigorous that there are close to no fake profiles on the app. It is virtually guaranteed that every person you'll match with or message is  a real person with real intentions (whatever those may be). 

Getting matched with someone who shares your intentions is a handy feature in the Chappy app (called the 'Chappy Scale') - it makes match suggestions based on what you intentions are, so you and your match likely want the same kind of relationship. 

5. Tinder

Tinder

(Image credit: Tinder.com)

Tinder

Biggest pool of people to choose from

One of the most used apps by people of all genders and sexual orientations
The the most personalized experience 
Profiles are very limited

Tinder is one of the most used dating apps on the market, which means that, regardless of gender or sexual orientation, there's a chance you'll meet someone who meets your criteria for a partner. Because there is no community monitoring, harassment and bullying may take place - but if you are the subject of such behavior, you can easily block and report a user. 

However, Tinder lacks the same consideration of the LGBTQ+ community that other apps on this list do. It doesn't take into account the vast spectrum of different gender identities and sexual orientations that exist. 

The app is hypothetically good for anyone identifying as cisgender: meaning that people who identify as men can meet other people who identity as either men or women, and people who identify as women can meet other people who identify as either men or women - but those who identity as asexual or transsexual, for example, don't have the option or properly displaying the gender of their choice.