Every now and then, I get a rare moment in the day to open up Instagram and check some random DMs. It usually goes something like this:

“Wow. I love your taste in lingerie!”

Can you guess which guy is going to get a decent response out of me? It should be a no-brainer yet at least 30% of messages I receive from guys consists solely of ‘Hey’ or some variation thereof. It doesn’t matter if I’m using The App to find Bulls, or answering messages on social media: many guys simply think it’s constructive to open with ‘Hey’. It’s like I’m expected to the heavy lifting in the interaction!

HeyI’m probably showing my age by ranting about this but SMH! Do guys honestly think that it’s going to get them somewhere with women? Or does ‘Hey’ indeed cut it with younger women? I shudder to think that girls these days are equally lazy or incapable of good communication that ‘Hey’ is actually an acceptable opener. I’m inclined to think that most women are like me and move on to the next message, hoping it’s not another ‘Hey’.

Meeting people online isn’t as easy as you’d think. The pro is that you have a massive pool of hotties to try your luck with, all while sitting on your couch in your underwear. The con is that you are led to think you don’t have to try as hard as in real life dating. Wrong! Sure, you can fish in that pool for hours and hope that one person finds your ‘Hey’ endearing but your overall chat and messaging game needs to be strong. After all, what are you going to follow up with after ‘Hey’?

I blame the culture of ‘Hey’ on instant messaging Apps like Snapchat and Kik. Emails and text messages have become archaic modes of communication but they at least harked back to the days of letter-writing. The current generation don’t know the pain of trying to convey as much information as they can in one message. It also used to cost a lot of money to send an SMS so we made sure we got our money’s worth back in the day. Now, you can send as many ‘Hey’s as you want for free thanks to cheaper and widespread WiFi.

In the defense of some guys, I guess ‘Hey’ is safe. It’s a little poke to see if there’s a willing participant behind the sexy avatar or username. Perhaps it’s about saving one’s A Game until they’re sure it’s not going to waste. Does that mean a lot of trawling around on Snapchat and PornHub to find their mark? Maybe it’s a chicken/egg problem where guys are losing their talent for prose since it feel like their effort is futile? Does the rate of rejection correlate to the decline in verbal articulation? If so, that’s kinda sad.

My advice to guys who are serious about meeting people online is to never stop trying to make a good first impression. ‘Hey’ is not a good start. All it says to women is that you’re not that worried about where the conversation is going to go. It’s a non-committal greeting and one that will usually get you the same level of interest in response. A ‘Hey’ should only get a ‘Hey’ back, and then what next? And don’t you dare say ‘Wyd‘, for fuck’s sake!

So what’s a guy to do to break the ice without resorting to ‘Hey’?

  • Prepare some casual one-liners in your head or Notepad. If you can’t think of any, try these. Some might be cheesy but ALL are better than ‘Hey’.
  • Include some detail about the other person based on their profile photo or bio. Personalise the experience if you’re really keen to get to know them. No woman wants to feel like she’s the next target on the list.
  • Be Cool. Save what’s on your mind for when you’re sure you’ll get a favourable response. I’m sure you’d love to see some nudes or see if someone is DTF ASAP but it’s sooooo unlikely that you’ll get a positive response if that’s the second thing you bring up after ‘Hey’.
  • Play the long game. Sometimes it’s worth being patient and establish a bit of a connection instead of expecting instant gratification. If getting your rocks off is your priority then your time is better spent on PornHub.


  1. Great post. This is not a chat up, I’m on the other side of the world and way too old for you. I just wanted to say that it cuts both ways. I am on some porn sites because I am a writer and I like to keep across trends. That is clear in my various profiles, but I keep getting the same sort of ‘Hey’ equivalents from women a third of my age. What are they thinking? Maybe you and me are just oldfashioned, though given the other material on your site that seems unlikely. you

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