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The best WLW and lesbian dating apps for queer women, trans, and non-binary users looking for love

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With cuffing season just warming up for 2024, the dating world is full of people looking for a special someone, or someones, to see them through the cold months ahead. For many queer, lesbian, and bisexual women, trans and non-binary people, the dating scene can feel pretty dire, with fewer options meaning lower chances of finding meaningful connections.

Considering same-sex couples are more likely to meet online, dating apps could now be considered somewhat crucial to finding intimacy for people within the LGBTQ+ community. In this article, we have put together the best queer women, trans, and non-binary-focused dating apps of the year to help lesbians and WLW (women who love women) find their match.

A hand holding a phone with social media icons on it, specifically designed for a lesbian dating app.

Her – The OG WLW dating app

Since its launch in 2013, any WLW who has ventured into the world of online dating has probably used Her; with over 13 million users, it quickly became one of the most popular dating apps for WLW. As it has updated over the years, it prides itself on creating a safe space for cis, trans, non-binary, and gender non-conforming people seeking love and community.

The reason for the app’s popularity lies not just in Her’s Tinder-like swiping, which allows you to create a profile using prompts, set your location settings and preferences, and match with people within your allocated radius.

Its range of profile stickers allows you to show off your personality and identity – from ‘420-friendly’ to ‘Lipstick Lesbian’, as well as offering a social community with events and community forums. Whether you have a question, are looking for some cheeky NSFW talk, or people to attend the latest queer event with, in your area, Her has you covered.

The app offers a range of subscriptions, starting at $14.99 a month, with a range of different features, including Free (with limited preferences and a daily swipe limit), Gold (with ad-free usage, advanced filters, and even incognito mode), and Platinum memberships (which allows you to see who is online now, unlimited swipes and see who has viewed you).

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  • Easy to use
  • Social platform and event calendar
  • Multiple sexuality and gender options
  • Free version has daily swipe limit
  • Constant adverts to upgrade
  • Filters don’t always work

Lex – Personal connections without focusing on looks

This is a “queer dating app for lesbian, bisexual, non-binary, trans, genderqueer, intersex, two-spirit, asexual, and queer people — everyone but cisgender men.” Lex is one of the most inclusive WLW dating apps for the whole community.

Lex is an excellent place if you are looking for a unique dating app that moves past looks. Inspired by the old-school newspaper personal ads, Lex is proudly queer-owned and comes from a place of wanting to create a space for people to find love, friends, and community. LEX originally started as an Instagram account. You simply filled out the Google form with your ad, and it posted it with a link to your Instagram account.

After it gained popularity, the app version launched in 2019 before rebranding in 2023 to focus on community over dating. However, dating and relationships are still part of the app, with people writing personal ads looking for love, hookups, and even the odd sex party! While browsing, you can use its filters for people in your area and even look for specific keywords to find what you’re looking for.

If you are looking for love, want book recommendations, are looking for a kink-focused romp, or are simply looking for people attending the same events as you, then you can simply type out your own personal ad and post it.

Lex came under fire this year because of its rebrand for many reasons. One of the biggest criticisms is that although the rebrand argues that it has made the app more accessible, the new color scheme makes it inaccessible for those with low vision and color blindness.

As well as this, the rebrand has left many feeling the focus on ‘tea parties’ and friendships took away the original intention of the app, which was inspired by the personals in the back of lesbian erotica magazine On Our Backs. This caused many to flood their Instagram with comments about the de-sexualization of the app and that Lex was buying into the respectability politics that stigmatize sexuality and sex-positivity, especially within queer-focused spaces.

In response, a Lex representative stated this isn’t the case. Claiming that as it has evolved as an app, it found many of its users are looking for an app that allows for connecting to the queer community and finding people in their area. Either way, you can still issue ‘horny personals’ and look for dates on its platform.

  • Straightforward UX
  • Moves away from “looks-focused” dating
  • Open-minded and sex-positive
  • More of a community app than dating
  • Can be difficult to find local people
  • Message notifications glitchy
A group of people sitting in front of a screen, engaged with social media icons on a lesbian dating app.

Hinge – For those serious about dating

If you have been using dating apps for a while, you have probably stumbled across Hinge. Since its rebrand in 2019, it has become one of the most popular WLW dating apps for those seeking a serious relationship; hence its tag line ‘the app designed to be deleted’ – great for those of us suffering from dating app fatigue.

With its multiple options for gender and sexuality, it doesn’t just cater to cis-gender lesbians and bisexuals. Still, it allows you to select your preferences if you want to match with women, men, and non-binary people so that you can cover as many matches as possible.

If you are someone who hates writing a dating bio, Hinge is perfect for you; with its range of prompts (including a fun selection of LGBTQ+-focused ones), Hinge helps you to create a profile that reflects your personality. You can also upload videos or audio prompts for extra fun, from explaining how to pronounce your name to a quick rant about something of your choice, although make sure to keep it short and snappy to showcase your true personality.

Alongside this, Hinge boasts a unique profile criterion, including where you live, if you are vaccinated, if you’re a smoker, and if you want kids – allowing you to be upfront about yourself before the first date kicks-off. For some, this may feel like it takes away the mystery, but for others, it offers you the chance to select the preferences you are looking for in your dream date.

One of the benefits of choosing Hinge as your WLW dating app compared to some of the others mentioned here is that it’s location and algorithm-based, matching you to a selection of people who match your criteria and are in your area (although you can also opt to look for people worldwide).

Although the app boasts of helping people find relationships, some of the downsides include the free option, which only allows for ten swipes a day, and even if you have set your preferences as just women or women and non-binary, the odd man has been known to pop up in your selections, which isn’t ideal. It is also worth noting that the premium memberships can be a hefty price, with options for $34.99 a month, $64.99 for three months, and a whopping $99.99 for six.

  • Multiple sexuality and gender options
  • LGBT+-focused conversation prompts
  • Unique profile creation
  • Expensive memberships
  • The free option only allows 10 swipes a day
  • Straight men may pop up

Feeld – For the sex-positive

For the sex-positive, polyamorous, or kinky among us, Feeld may be your dating app of choice. Since its launch in 2014, the app has sought to create a safe space for anyone who wants to explore their sexuality and relationships, whether they are single, poly, or looking to open their relationship up to a third (hence the app’s original, and unpronounceable, name, 3nder).

With over 20 different sexuality and gender options, Feeld offers an inclusive space for everyone to come and find their match. When you set up your profile, you can also set your preferences to match with singles, couples, or both, and if you are interested in catering to WLW matches or open for MLW options.

Because everyone is there for similar reasons, Feeld is distinctive because of its users’ openness and non-judgemental attitude towards others, whether they are into kink, ethical non-monogamy, alternative relationship structures, or anything else.

Like other dating apps, Feeld offers a range of membership options, starting at $14.99 per month or $29.99 for three months of ‘Majestic Mode’. Paid perks include incognito mode, unlimited likes, adding private photos, and seeing who has already liked you.

  • Sex and kink-positive
  • Easy to use and can link profile with partner
  • Fairly affordable subscriptions
  • Need Facebook account to sign up
  • Known to be glitchy
  • Smaller pool of users
A colorful illustration of a group of people connecting and forming hearts, representing a vibrant community within a lesbian dating app.

Lesly – The one by ‘lesbian dating experts’

Although it states that it was “created by lesbian dating experts,” don’t let that put you off joining Lesly if you identify as anything other than a lesbian. Lesly is a great WLW dating app for all, whether you are cis, non-binary, trans, or gender non-conforming. It caters to all looking for love, hookups, or dates, offering a free or paid version (which starts at $9.99 monthly).

What sets Lesly apart from many other WLW-focused dating apps is its focus on safety. With its strict verification process, which you must complete to successfully create a profile, the moderators vet each member to ensure it is not a scam or catfish account before allowing you to start swiping.

Although Lesly boasts a user-friendly experience, many users have complained about the free version, stating that it is only useful if you pay the membership, as it’s necessary to use the filters.

  • User-friendly interface
  • Location-based matches
  • Strict verification process
  • Free version limits your use
  • Adverts on free version
  • Smaller user base

Fem – For those who hate writing prompts

Unlike the other dating apps, Fem is a WLW dating app that prioritizes videos over other profile prompts. If you love TikTok and hate writing a long, boring bio (not everyone likes the About You section, let’s be honest), this one is for you.

The app’s video features allow you to get to know the real person behind the messages and weed out fake profiles for moderators when it verifies profiles. However, images and audio files are also allowed.

Unlike Tinder, Her Hinge, and Feeld. Fem doesn’t operate on a swipe basis, instead allowing you to browse other users using filters and preferences. As with other, Fem offers in-app purchases, which can be anywhere between $0.99 to $89.99 per item.

If you are looking for love anywhere in the world, Fem can be a great place to start, with its chatrooms offering you the chance to meet people in your area or from anywhere as you can talk about everything from meeting up to some naughty fun.

One downside of the app is that it is only available on Android, so you cannot use it if you are an Apple user.

  • New profile concept uses videos instead of prompts and images
  • Chatrooms allow connections with users from anywhere
  • Only available on Android
  • Basic features require membership

Taimi – For the community-minded

Although it is LGBTQ+ and caters to all genders and sexualities, if you want a dating app you can also create a community within, then Taimi works well as a WLW dating app too. It is one of the most prominent LGBTQ+ dating apps, with over 18 million users, multiple genders, and sexuality options. It has also been awarded the title of best dating app for non-binary, trans, and gender non-conforming people.

Alongside messaging your matches, you can also get to know them more intimately with video chat and call options available. The idea is that is should allow you to build a deeper connections before meeting.

What sets Taimi apart from most others is that it ‘s one-part dating app and one-part social channel (although Her and Fem offer social options with forums and chatrooms), allowing you to create a customizable feed, much like Facebook. You can post statuses, ‘like’ posts, share stories, and start groups.

They also offer built-in protections in the app to stop users from taking screenshots of others’ profiles – to better protect their users from harassment, bullying, and being outed. To get the most out of the app with its roll-back options, likes, and search filters, you’ll need to check out one of the paid subscriptions: bronze ($4.99/month), silver ($6.99/month) and gold ($9.99/month) to reap the benefits and find love on the app.

  • Affordable subscriptions
  • Mixture of dating and social
  • Strong privacy protection
  • Crashes and glitches
  • Customer support doesn’t work
  • Too many notifications

Shanty LGBT – The new one is one of the newer apps to hit the world of queer dating. The app aims to create an online, worldwide community that focuses on safety, with a strict verification process and inclusiveness.

Once you have created a profile and set your location settings, you can access your matches based on the app’s algorithm. As well as find out what is happening in your area as it showcases events and community meet-ups in that calendar month.

What sets it apart from other dating apps is the opportunity to have a disliked profiles section alongside likes, allowing you to continue swiping and matching without seeing the same profiles repeatedly.

  • Completely free
  • Takes privacy seriously with the strict verification process
  • It has a disliked profiles option so that you won’t get the same profiles continuously
  • Only available on Google Play
  • As it has just launched, it has a smaller user base than other apps

Coming Out – For those looking for a meet-cute moment

Coming Out is another LGBTQ+-focused app that is just about to launch. This is for those who prefer to find dates outside dating apps. The app focuses on showing you the best events, bars, and community events happening near you and worldwide.

If you have dreamt of your perfect meet-cute moment, prepare for this app to become your new buddy. You can keep up-to-date on the latest updates via its Instagram page.

  • Worldwide events calendar & locations, not just focused on the big cities
  • Social platform alongside map option
  • Community-focused & inclusive of all sexualities and genders
  • Hasn’t launched yet
  • Not technically a dating app

Tinder – The original dating app

You can only talk about dating apps by mentioning Tinder. Although it tends to get a wrap as usually a heterosexual hook-up app, with its filters and preference options, you can match with like-minded WLW no matter your gender identity; just set your settings to match with women. Whether you’re based in a big city or a smaller town, Tinder is a fantastic place to meet other WLW in your area just from a numbers perspective, as it is one of the most popular and used dating apps.

In fact, alongside creating a bio where you can tell everyone who you are, what you are looking for, and your hobbies, it now allows you to select up to three different pronouns and sexualities to describe yourself in as much detail as you want. Unlike Hinge, which focuses on algorithms and preferences, Tinder uses a swipe method, bringing you matches based on location, which does not filter height, education, race, or religion to promote more inclusivity—allowing you to chat with people in your area that you may never have thought to talk to before.

Since the pandemic, it also added a face-to-face feature, allowing you to video chat with the person you match with before you meet.

Like others, Tinder offers a range of memberships, including free, plus ($7.99 a month), gold ($24.99 a month), and Platinum ($29.99 a month); depending on which one you choose opens you up to a range of perks, including unlimited likes, super likes features, seeing who likes you, and even being able to send a message before you have liked someone (which may result in unwanted conversations).

For anyone using the free version, this can be annoying as your likes are limited, and many find the filters often do not work, meaning you may see men when you have chosen only same-sex.

  • Easy filter options to find your preferred match
  • Can select up to 3 pronouns and sexualities
  • Video chat options
  • Platinum users can message you without matching
  • Returning users can make swiping repetitive
  • Location and gender filters don’t always work

My WLW app of choice

Like many queer individuals looking for love, I have used plenty of dating apps over the years. Some I immediately left, and some I keep returning to like an old friend. Of the selections above, the one I feel is best for dating as a WLW is Her.

Her’s location and age filter allows you to quickly find people in your area and age range to match with, whether you come from a big city or a small town. It also allows you to build a community through its social platform. With its range of stickers, genders, and sexualities, you can show yourself in the best light even before adding pictures and writing your bio.

While the heteronormative world may be built against WLW, the increasing range of queer dating apps should offer some solace in our hunt for love.

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