17 Niche Dating Sites for Specialty Lovers
Tagline: "Date Me. Date My Pet."
Clientele: Some people appear to be average pet owners looking for companionship. Others seem to be seeking the right mate for their pets as well as for themselves.
Special features: The site offers articles with topics like "pet therapy for owners," and "Hawaii: visiting with your pet." Profiles include a "my pet(s) would describe me as" section. You can also browse to simply find playmates for your animal, no romance required.
Our take: Plenty of people have had relationship issues over pets, so it's great to eliminate -- up front -- people who are deathly allergic to Fido or Fifi. On the downside, finding the right match for yourself is difficult enough; how do you electronically figure out if two dogs will get along?
Tagline: "[The] hottest spot to meet real punk singles."
Clientele: Punk rockers and fans. Judging by the profiles, that seems to mean people who like partying, tattoos, piercings, and intense personalities.
Special features: The site allows a member to be very specific about their personal life and habits, including their living situation ("friends come over often"), how much they drink and smoke, and how they behave in social settings.
Our take: It seems to lack the authenticity of a true punk scene and seems to cater more towards people who simply have tattoos, piercings, and differently colored hair.
3) WomenBehindBars.com and Inmate.com
Tagline: None for either.
Clientele: Well, we know who the inmates are. But we can't imagine who'd want to write to them, aside from other inmates. You could just become pen pals, or you might find love. WomenBehindBars, for example, claims to have fostered 38 marriages in its 12-year existence.
Special features: Most of the ads include the prisoner's release date, so you can make long-term plans, but neither site provides the details of each conviction. Inmate.com also features original convict art and writing, such as "The Continuing Saga of Icicle Bill and Tommy Two-Head," a buddy crime saga.
Our take: Everyone deserves a chance at rehabilitation, and maybe love will help keep some of these people on the straight and narrow. Still, we think you should be able to get more info on what the perps were involved in -- before you get involved with them.
Tagline: "Connecting admirers of 'The Fountainhead' and 'Atlas Shrugged.'"
Clientele: Ayn Rand fans. Boasting over 10,000 dating profiles, the site unites people who are inspired by her novels and philosophy of objectivism. Some members are just in it for the discussion, not the romance. Luckily, the site clearly labels the profiles to let you know the difference.
Special features: Over 600 columns, many of which go beyond Rand's work to cover topics such as "How Not to Run GM" and "Competition Would Save Medicine, Too." There are also book and DVD recommendations -- some directly related to Rand, others just of interest to the ego-driven kind of folk who like her books.
Our take: We're pretty sure "Have you read 'The Fountainhead?'" isn't the most successful pickup line in clubs. So this site could spare its "exceptional" members lots of quizzical looks and letdowns on the dating scene.
Tagline: "Why toke alone?"
Clientele: Pot smokers looking for a "higher" love. It's basically a normal dating site, but for people with a certain habit.
Special features: A "hot or not" photo rating system, online chatting, and links to purchase specialty products like clear rolling papers and herbal vaporizers.
Our take: Even if it doesn't work out romantically, you might find a new dealer. And if the reefer's not your thing, there's always SmokingPassions.com for cigarette lovers.
Tagline: None for either.
Clientele: Short and tall folks, respectively, and those who love them.
Special features: Both have chat options. TallFriends also has blogs, forums, and even greeting cards.
Our take: Height can be an issue for many singles. We've known plenty of guys who wouldn't date a taller woman, and amazons who want to look their man in the eye. So we applaud these sites that help you find someone who measures up to your standards, literally and figuratively.
Tagline: "Life is short. Have an affair."
Clientele: Those already in relationships, looking for some side action. There are over four million members and -- surprise! -- men outnumber women by nearly six to one.
Special features: Security measures to maintain everybody's privacy to the utmost extent. For example, the site leaves it up to you as to when you reveal your identity. And you can post photos of yourself in a 'private showcase,' open to only those users you deem worthy.
Our take: Isn't there enough adultery going on through normal dating sites?
Clientele: People with mental illnesses trying to date or just make friends. As the Webmaster points out, these problems often lead to social isolation.
Special features: A newsletter and chat room.
Our take: This is the most well-intentioned dating site we've come across. We wish the best for all 14,000 members.
Tagline: "Where the classy, attractive, and affluent meet."
Clientele: Rich men and women, or maybe just rich men and hot women. A sample testimonial reads "T you for giving me an opportunity to talk to the wealthiest guys from all over the world... I recommended it to my girlfriends, who also became members."
Special features: A few dating articles.
Our take: You want to run a high-class dating service, and you choose "Sugar Daddie" as the name? For all the refinement this site purports to have, there doesn't seem to be much of it .
Clientele: Women who want breast augmentation, and men who want to help them. Basically, the women accrue money for surgery by chatting with the male clients.
Special features: Plenty of chatting, and for guys willing to pay, customized photos and videos of the girls (provided they agree to the requested poses/outfits/settings). Also, a contest in which a lucky woman can win a free boob job!
Our take: Basically, it's the same business model as a sex webcam service. Men pay women to turn them on. Only, this site tells guys they can form a "connection" with the ladies. The site shows that many women raise several thousand bucks, but the lack of any 'couple success stories' makes the promise of romance appear as fake as the new bustlines.
Tagline: "The science of love."
Clientele: Members believe that we're instinctively drawn to those with different immune system genes, and that such pairing leads to healthier children.
Special features: The only site that requires a saliva sample, ScientificMatch analyzes your DNA, factors in your values and preferences based on surveys, and connects you with biologically appropriate partners. The fee: $2,000.
Our take: Did we mention the price tag? And the fact that it promises little more than what you'd get with a pheromone cologne or, if you believe the commercials, Axe Body Spray? We'll pass.
Tagline: "Love long and prosper."
Clientele: Trekkies. Really.
Special features: Videos, games, forums, chats, blogs. This site has it all.
Our take: Not all 'Star Trek' lovers can afford flying out to conventions, and boldly wearing Vulcan ears to the local club can be a bit awkward, so seeking new love online makes sense.
Clientele: People with sexually transmitted diseases. Like most other dating sites, you create a profile and upload photos. But here, you also specify which STD(s) you have.
Special features: In addition to the standard blogs and articles, the site provides locations of care facilities and live chat with counselors.
Our take: Thumbs up. It encourages people to be responsible and eliminates that awkward "before we do anything..." conversation.
Tagline: The best place on the Net to meet geeks.
Clientele: Geeks of every type -- from 'Harry Potter' fans to gadget hounds. Where else can you find a date and discuss 'Halo' -- with the same person?
Special features: Blogs, contests, and plenty of Top 10 lists, including the top reasons geeks make the best lovers.
Our take: As the target demographic, we may be biased, but we find geek couples adorable. The world needs more of them.
Tagline: "It's all about the 'stache."
Clientele: Men with quality lip fur and the women who love to brush up against it. Apparently, there aren't so many. The site has slightly less than 700 members.
Special features: None.
Our take: Mustaches are making a comeback. And though they may never reach their mid-'80s, Tom Selleck and Keith Hernandez level of popularity, we can see this as a growing trend in niche dating.
Tagline: "City folks just don't get it."
Clientele: Farmers, ranchers, cowboys, cowgirls, rodeo fans, livestock owners, etc.
Special features: None.
Our take: As the site points out, how are you going to meet someone while working on a farm all day? Finally, farmers can "get it" without settling for the local prospects they see at the market.
Clientele: The site caters to AB/DLs, which means -- and we had to look this up -- Adult Babies and Diaper Lovers. These people get their kicks by either dressing up as babies or playing the role of parents. And no, it's not just a site to meet up for some weird sex. There are over 12,000 members, many looking for friends or relationships.
Special features: Community events, such as dinners, parties, and a camping trip.
Our take: We can't even fathom being into this as a hobby or kink, but we won't judge. If anything, we'd rather this niche stay on the Web and out of our favorite bars -- especially considering the lack of changing stations in the bathrooms.