Bumble's predictions for 2024 dating trends make for some uplifting reading. The likes of breadcrumbing, ghosting, cushioning, and zombieing have plagued the dating app world over the last few years, but Bumble's list of dating trends for 2024 suggests we could be headed towards a much healthier landscape.
Last year we saw themes like having a 'love-life balance' and looking beyond your usual 'type'. Next year, some of the key ideas are around sharing the same ethics and values, as well as emotional vulnerability being one of the most important parts of a relationship.
Naomi Walkland, Bumble’s Vice-President for Europe, said: "In 2023, we identified trends on love abroad, new boundaries, and a more open approach to typecasting. Intertwined with our dating lives, we saw societal conversations on misogyny, women’s rights, and social issues that left many exhausted.
"In our research, we’ve seen that these cultural conversations have impacted the way that people on Bumble are dating – empowering their sense of self and seeking people who value what’s also important to them, whether it’s social causes, lifestyles or just their favourite sports team."
Naomi also explained how single people are becoming more open to going against rigid criteria when it comes to dating. "We’ve also seen that singles are increasingly looking inwards, unpacking expectations around age, perfection, and timelines, and seeking people who are more vulnerable and accepting of who they are," Naomi explained.
She coined 2024 the 'year of self' with daters their values and beliefs first and seeking out those who do the same. "2024 will bring a year of self," she continued. "With people more empowered than ever to prioritise what they value and what they will not stand for, leading to a new clarity about what they want in their romantic lives.”
Bumble found that 25% of people think that it is key that their partner actively engages with politics and social causes - and that being passionate about political views makes them more attractive.
The survey also found that women in particular are less open to dating someone whose political views differ from theirs, with one in three women seeing it as a big turn-off if someone they are dating has different political views. A partner who isn't aware of current issues in society was also seen as a disadvantage.
While values and political leanings are up there as some of the most important factors when finding a partner, other more shallow factors such as age, have become less of a priority. One in three women said they've become less judgemental towards age gaps in the past year, with 59% of women surveyed saying that they're open to dating someone younger than them.
In 2024, it's all about quality over quantity, with 31% of those surveyed opting for 'slow dating'. Bumble describes this trend as 'having deeper or longer conversations to get to know a potential partner, and it means not being offended if a match doesn't want to meet up right away'. This relates to the stat that 58% of singles are actively trying to be more open about their mental health and are making an effort to slow down
Emotional intimacy is a key player when it comes to dating in 2024. One-third (32%) of those surveyed believe emotional intimacy is more important than sex. While 78% of women said their partner needs to understand the importance of both emotional and physical intimacy.
"It is exciting to see people continue to lean into self-acceptance and vulnerability as the foundation of healthy and equitable relationships," said Bumble's sex and relationships expert Shan Boodram. "When we are kinder to ourselves, we are able to make more meaningful, purposeful, and intentional connections both online and in real life."
With the rise of influencers encouraging a toxic view of masculinity relating to male dominance, it's no surprise that women are looking for men who are unafraid to show their emotions and take a softer view on what masculinity means.
One in four men also stated in the survey that they have actively tried to become more vulnerable and open with people they are dating - with some positive results. One in four found that this new-found openness improved their mental health, with 32% of men citing being open and vulnerable the most important part of being in a relationship.
"These trends highlight a positive shift toward celebrating who you are, as you are, moving away from traditional timelines, redefining outdated expectations, and seeking shared values," relationships expert Boodram continued.
"I look forward to seeing what 2024 holds for the Bumble community as they continue to bring their most authentic selves to the table and make kind connections."
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Lauren is the former Deputy Digital Editor at woman&home and became a journalist mainly because she enjoys being nosy. With a background in features journalism, Lauren has bylines in publications such as Marie Claire UK, Red Magazine, House of Coco, women&home, GoodTo, Woman's Own and Woman magazine.
She started writing for national papers and magazines at Medavia news agency, before landing a job in London working as a lifestyle assistant and covers everything from fashion and celebrity style to beauty and careers.
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