Carmen was trying really hard to boost Olivia’s morale. But the moment she uttered the words, “There is plenty of fish in the sea,” Olivia just rolled her eyes and snorted. Being a kind person and gorgeous to boot, Olivia never had a dearth of men. What she lacked were partners who understood her alternative lifestyle. What she needed was the knowledge of alternative dating sites, cause Tinder was just not doing it for her.
To all the Olivias and Carmens out there, who are struggling hard to find like-minded lovers, we are here for you. Here is a compilation of alternative dating sites that cater to the niche, keeping their requirements in consideration. After all, love comes in all shapes and sizes and deserves its own alcove.
11 Alternative Dating Sites – Mainstream Is Not For Everybody
It comes as no surprise that, if you are an animal lover, then you would like to have a partner who is as passionate about animals as you are, cause you know pets affect your dating life If you are hardcore and like headbanging to death metal and your partner lands on your doorstep, with his boombox playing Sorry by Justin Bieber, then chances are you will hose him down.
It’s not the poor guy’s fault. He did try his best. Or maybe it was really too late to say sorry. Whatever the reason may be, you’ve realized that you are just too hardcore and the weight of trying to make it work is chipping away at your soul. Then it’s time to explore these alternative dating sites.
1. Gothicmatch: For the soul that is as dark as the night sky
If you are a die-hard fan of The Cure and Bauhaus, then you know Goth and Emo are not just branches of rock music, they are a lifestyle of their own. If you are an Emo boy or an Emo girl and want to connect with someone who belongs to the gothic or emo subculture, Gothicmatch is the place for you.
One of the top dating sites of its niche, this social networking platform is user-friendly and is quite popular in the Gothic and Emo community. Not only can you meet singles who are interested in the same lifestyle and music, as you, they also have gothic date ideas that are fun, success stories, gothic fashion shows, and, my favorite, gothic tattoo shows.
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Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; no mobile app yet
USP: Exclusively for people who live the Gothic and Emo lifestyle
2. Punkdatingsite: For the punk in you
Punkdatingsite is a dating site for, you guessed it, those who love punk rock music. This is one of the totally free alternative dating sites that allows you to connect with singles who are as passionate about punk rock as you are. Like Goth and Emo, Punk is a lifestyle too. Whether it’s an old-time Punker who has been living the punk life for a while or young blood that has just joined the punk scene, no matter what, all are welcomed to sign in.
As one of the top punk dating sites, this platform offers you the option to find punkers in your area or through common interests. So, if you are a single gay Punker who loved The Ramones before they were famous and are looking for the love of your life, or a female Punker looking for someone to just flirt and jam with to American Idiot by Greenday, then your search ends here.
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; no mobile app yet
USP: Exclusively for Punkers. Both, for hooking up and serious dating; LGBTQ friendly
3. Feeld: The place for exploration and acceptance
When you know yourself, you are empowered. When you accept yourself, you are invincible. When David realized he was attracted to both men and women, he was afraid his wife of 5 years might leave him. Yet he decided to do the honorable thing and tell his wife Brianna. As expected, Brianna was surprised, but not shocked. They talked and tried to understand David’s romantic orientation and needs and that’s how they discovered Feeld.
Feeld is a dating platform for both singles and couples. Free from judgment, this alternate dating site’s intention is to help an individual explore their sexual identity. Whether you are dating multiple people at one time or identify as pansexual, you will find like-minded people here. With 20+ gender and sexual identities to choose from, as well as a safe space to create group chats, this alternative dating site’s free version is available too. So, what are you waiting for?
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Available on: iOS and Android; has an App
USP: LGBTQ friendly; perfect for couple dating
4. Her: Being proud, loving proud
Are you tired of hearing women say things like, “I once kissed my sorority sister at a fundraiser, so I totally get it…” and “Are you going to hit on me?” or worse, men saying things like, “I bet I can change your mind” or “So, are you down for a threesome?” every time you tell someone your orientation? Well, Her has your back.
As the name indicates, this totally free alternative dating site’s primary focus is women who identify as lesbians, bisexual or queer women. Having more than 8 million users this dating site is secure and very inclusive. Her also keeps you up to date on current events in the LGBTQ + communities; you can attend events sponsored by Her and meet like-minded people online as well as offline.
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; has an App
USP: Exclusively for lesbians; extremely safe and secure
5. Bumble: The perfect place to connect
When Emily lost her father, she was devastated. After 2 years Emily realized that time doesn’t heal the pain of losing a parent, it just becomes more bearable. However, Emily could see her mother’s struggles all too clearly. After 30 years of marriage, losing her partner, someone she loved so dearly, was taking a toll on her. Her loneliness was haunting her. Fortunately for Emily, Bumble came to their rescue.
If you are over 50 and like quality over quantity, then Bumble is the dating app for you. Bumble is a highly secure platform that has a decent verification process that disallows spamming, perfect for those who are above 50 and looking to date. Being a woman-centric dating app, it gives women the opportunity to make the first move.
This alternative dating site’s free version is equally handy to find a partner or a friend as well as help build work connections. While you register, the app gives you 3 options to choose from: Dating, BFF, bizz (business). So, if you are looking for love, friendship, or ways to advance your career, Bumble is the site for you.
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser
USP: Women-centric. People of all ages are welcomed. Career oriented.
6. Grindr: The granddaddy of all alternative dating sites
Grindr needs no introduction. Launched in 2009, Grindr is one of the first totally free alternative dating sites that moved away from mainstream straight dating to championing love for the LGBTQ+ community. This all-male social network site has been the platform where thousands of men have found their perfect gay love story.
Simple and easy to use, Grindr has been a trailblazer by using geolocation to access suitable matches around your location. Though there is an ad-free paid membership, you can unlock almost all the features of this app without paying and watching ads instead. With 500+ LGBTQ-themed stickers, interesting profile details, and saved phrase options, this app makes sure you have fun in your hunt for love.
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser
USP: Exclusively for gay men and LGBTQ+
7. Tastebuds: When music is life
If music can get you out of a mental rut or if you have a song for every little situation, then music is more than a combination of pleasant-sounding notes to you. Music has always been that one thing that brings people together irrelevant of their origin, tribe, creed, or political view. When you are at a concert, you are neither Kate from Ireland nor Saeeda from Turkey, you are just 2 people who really love Coldplay.
Tastebuds provides you with a beautiful platform where you connect with people based on your taste in music. Be it sharing songs or discovering new music, you can do it all. If your idea of a fun and romantic thing to do is to listen to music till 4 am or to go to concerts together, you don’t need to look any further.
Related Reading: A magical, musical marriage
Available on: App store and browser
USP: Connect over music; share songs to find like-minded people.
8. DateMyAge: The mature alternate dating site
DateMyAge is for people who know what they want from life and their partner. If you are in your mid-40’s and are looking for a meaningful relationship, then this is the place for you. Even though it is primarily a website for older individuals, people in their 20s and 30s also join in. This site gives you the feeling of being on a social network rather than a dating site and thus, as a result, it is popular amongst the younger generation.
This is one of the alternate dating sites free for both IOS and Android, where you can connect with people based on your preference and likes. Of course, nothing in the world is really ever free and certain features unlock when you go for a paid membership, but you will never feel pressured into doing so.
Available on: iOS, Android, browser; app available on Play Store and App Store
USP: Easy to use, primarily for people above the age of 40, but one can find younger people here too
9. Gothpassions: The name says it all
If you have a passion for all things gothic and are searching for an alternative to Tinder, then this is the perfect dating site for you. Gothpassions provides the perfect platform for people who follow the Goth lifestyle and who are searching for other people who share the same interests as them.
With a plethora of Goth forums, blogs, communities, and fun activities to choose from, Gothpassions makes you feel welcomed. Now that you have found your perfect community, can love be far behind?
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Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; has no app
USP: For people who love all things Goth
10. Altscene: When mainstream is killing you
If you have been searching for punk dating sites or are a metalhead and looking for someone who shares the same interests and alternative lifestyle as you, then look no further because you have arrived at the mother ship.
According to dating experts, Altscene is one of the best alternative dating sites out there. Whether you are a Punker or an Emo girl or a Goth boy, you are bound to find someone who appreciates your belief system and core values. With an unlimited messaging allowance even for their free membership, Altscene does not lure you into paying for connecting with people. All one really needs is a place where one can be themselves, right? Well, that’s exactly what Altscene is all about.
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; has no app.
USP: 100% free alternative dating site
11. Coffee Meets Bagel: Too cute to resist
This list would not be complete if we didn’t mention Coffee Meets Bagel. We all know that endless swiping can get mind-numbing and a bit superficial after a while. Free for Android and IOS, Coffee Meets Bagel is one of the top international dating sites and provides freshly curated matches (Bagels) every day at 12. Be it for hook-ups or long-term relationships, this platform welcomes all kinds of love and lifestyles, straight and queer alike.
While men get 12 bagels every day to like, pass, or superlike; women, on the other hand, only get matches that fit their criteria and who have already liked them. Coffee Meets Bagel has a high woman-to-man ratio of 60:40. Now isn’t that nice? But don’t linger too long as you only have 24 hours before the match disappears and 7 days to exchange numbers or go on a date. So what are you waiting for? Grab that Bagel before it goes poof!!
Available on: iOS, Android, and browser; app available on Play Store as well as App Store
USP: Woman-centric, safe, and user-friendly
Finding love has always been complicated. And when you choose an alternative lifestyle, the complications become ten-fold. It’s good that the world is recognizing and appreciating individuality and making space for it in our everyday lives. People are more understanding and accepting of other choices. As they should be. After all, that’s what makes the world so beautiful.