We have talked about dating, dating apps, but we haven’t specifically talked about how race or ethnicity plays a role in dating. Many people claim to be open minded about who they choose to date, but a view of OkCupid’s dating stats tell a different story. We dive into the story behind the numbers.

OkCupid has released United States based dating statistics by race.  This is based on their user base. You can find more details in the article here. We have all heard and seen cases where dating apps aren’t friendly to people of color and that finding the right match isn’t easy. There are some interesting trends if we compare 2009 to 2014. Reference the exhibits in the link above and find the 2009 chart labeled “OkCupid QuickMatch Scores.” There is a second chart with the same title for 2014.

First Westley and Brock go into the details of 2009:

When it comes to men’s preferences for women, the report shows:

  • Asian men prefer Asian women first and then White women
  • Black men prefer Asian women and Latina women equally
  • Latino men prefer White women first, then Asian women, then Latina women
  • White men prefer White women first, then Asian women, then Latina women
  • All men ranked Black women as least desirable

When it comes to women’s preferences for men, the report shows:

  • Asian women prefer White men first and then Asian men
  • Black women prefer Black men first, then White men
  • Latina women prefer Latino men first, then White men
  • White women prefer like White men first, then Latino men

Then we reviewed the trends in 2014:

When it comes to men’s preferences for women, the report shows:

  • Asian men prefer Asian women, then White women and now also consider dating Latina women
  • Black men prefer Asian women and Latina women equally, and now also consider dating Black women
  • Latino men reversed order and now prefer Latina women first, then Asian women, and then White women
  • White men reversed their top two and prefer Asian women first, then White women, and then Latina women
  • When it comes to men from other races/ ethnicities, they ranked Black women as their least preferred

When it comes to women’s preferences for men, the report shows:

  • Asian women reversed and now prefer Asian men, then White men
  • Black women prefer Black men only
  • Latina women prefer Latino men, then White men
  • White women prefer White men, then Latino men
  • Women’s racial preferences have gotten stronger since 2009- as in they are less likely to be open to date races and ethnicities different from their own.

Lina D, Westley, and Brock discuss their theories on why they think this trend has happened. Lina D goes into male privilege being a factor since women have to think about the situations they place themselves with dating and if they haven’t been explosed to other ethnicities growing up or they are not a part of their friendship cirlces- then they are less likely to feel safe surrounding themselves with diverse men when it comes to dating.

A note as you are reading these tables, the values in these tables are “preference above/below vs. the average.” Think of them as how people weigh race in deciding attraction. So, for example, latina women find latino men 18% more desirable than the average man.

Westley, Brock, and Lina D discuss what these trends say about dating for people of color.

The stats above make us think about the power of having apps that are specifically targeting communities of color. If people are already self selecting in the mainstream apps, would they have better results in finding their match on apps that cater to a specific ethnic group? We talk through some of the apps for people of color that are out there. And you can also read this great article to get another point of view. Between Westley, Brock, and Lina D there isn’t a wide spread use of the apps targeting people of color but Westley does share an interesting story about his experience with SoulSwipe. The other apps we talk about are: Bae, Meld, and MiCrush.

Since it seems that ultimately, people of color have a much smaller pool to choose from for dating, Brock talks about how he has opted to be more proactive about swiping when he is traveling abroad. Based on his experience, Brock gives his advice on what country you should be swiping in if you want to meet more diverse and open minded people. Brock’s advice is to go where your background and ethnicity is seen as unique. In his experience, those homogenous cultures reward being different unlike the U.S. In his last episode, Brock talks about his experience on dating apps in Zagreb, Croatia; Mexico City, Mexico; and all-inclusive resorts/cruises. He does warn you to do your research on the resort or cruise you select as lots are heavily skewed towards family and/or couples.

Lina D talks about the openness of men approaching her abroad vs. the U.S. and Westley has found that more women liked his profile while he was abroad than in the U.S.

The No Free Drinks co-host thank Brock for having played a role in starting the podcast and wish him luck in his future projects!