The 8 Guys You Meet on Grindr (and Other Gay Apps)

Things you should know about gay dating apps

While finding a compatible friend or partner on gay apps may seem easy given the wide variety of options, finding one who is emotionally and physically available is a whole other issue. Across the myriad of options, from Boyahoy and Grindr to Growlr and Scruff, the men are endless but their personalities easily fall into one of eight distinct categories.


Parents, if you're curious to know more about the Grindr app your son has on his phone, or computer, we have a parent's guide to Grindr that covers all the details you need to know. 

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Man with reflective aviator sun glasses and fur collar on trench coat

Ryan Klos / E+ / Getty Images

If you've been on a gay app for a while, you know the stalker well: they're up at all hours of the night, glancing at your profile and your photos without ever saying a word.

You might see stalkers on your list of visitors often, even early in the morning, but are never able to catch them in the act, or worse, you get blocked when you try to confront them.

If a stalker is too spooky for you to handle, consider just blocking them from accessing your profile. This is a feature in most dating apps and the other person won't even get notified; they'll just think that you've deleted your profile.

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Older man with glasses and hat showing a peek into his shirt

 Willowpix / Getty Images

Whether you love them or hate them, the flasher is a prominent fixture of the gay community, and they have no qualms about showing a little skin.

Whether they unlock their photos without so much as a greeting or abruptly interrupt during a conversation, the flasher is provocative and strikes without warning.

To deal with a flasher, you might try the simple approach: ask them to stop. If that doesn't work, use the app's blocking function to curb the harassment; most dating apps support a method to block users.

Another option to stop someone who flashes you on a dating app is to report the abuse to the service. If even a few people do this, chances are they will look into it and take action, like delete the profile from the dating site.

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Art Collectors

Man holding and admiring framed art

Westend61 / Getty Images

The reverse of the flasher, but perhaps more annoying, is the art collector. This is a gay app user who is incessant of their demands to see your portfolio.

These people are relentless in their quest to see more of you.

  • "Can you unlock your pics?"
  • "Do you have any more pix?"
  • "Where are your nudes?"

Like with most abuse cases in dating apps, a simple block of that user is enough to stop the messages.

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Three's a Crowd

Three men on a beach with arms over each other's shoulders
Piotr Bizior 

The guys who make up this community of app users aren't necessarily bad people, but if you are looking for a friend or a romantic connection, they are potentially unavailable and it can also get messy in a flash.

"Three's a Crowd" people are those who are already partnered, in an open relationship, or just looking for friends while still attached. Tread carefully if you aren't into no-strings-attached situations.

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Loleia / 

Typically found on gay apps without a photo in sight or some abstract, illustrated, or otherwise unidentifiable image like a wall or their bed, the secret agent has something to hide.

The user might do this for a number of reasons, like that they are not yet officially public about their sexuality, that they may be in a relationship but fear being caught, or have concerns about being identified by co-workers/bosses/students, etc.

These users may be very good, emotionally available people, but it's still wise to practice caution. The last thing you want is to talk with them for weeks, months, or even longer only to have them always be too afraid to meet up for fear of coming out.

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Static Clingers

Businessman with briefcase grabbing another businessman's foot

Denkou Images / Getty Images 

Sugar sweet and always with a nice thing to say, these boys next door may seem like a good thing at first until you realize they don't know how to stop.

Static clingers always have a message waiting for you and a compliment to share. The feeling of being desired is nice but watch for signs of low self-esteem and compulsive behaviors which might make them ill-suited for a relationship.


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Richard Dudley / 

If you've ever heard of the CatFish TV show, you know there are loads of imposters online: people who pretend to be someone else for the "fun" of interacting with someone online.

In fact, believe it or not, there are more women on gay apps than you might imagine. This includes everyone from a guy's best friend scoping out a potential match on their behalf to lesbians (and even other guys) who enjoy playing games with guys.

While there is no way to tell who is an imposter and who isn't, practicing common sense and taking precautions with your images and information will help keep you safe in the long run.

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The One You've Been Waiting For

Gay couple in matching yellow with red background

Flashpop / Getty Images

Yes, it is true, the man of your dreams may very well be one of the people you meet on a gay app. Unfortunately, one common stereotype is that these apps are for only hooking up.

Truth be told, they wouldn't have options for "friends," "conversation," "dating," or even "love" if that was the case! Do not be dissuaded by the seven other types which may throw you off in your quest. He might be on the "nearby" list of your favorite app right now.