Most people probably never expect to look for dating sites for singles over 40 — they hope to be settled and married before then — but sometimes life happens, relationships end, and you have to roll with it.

While in her 30s, my mom’s main friend group was made up entirely of married couples with children, and they used to take pride in the fact that none of them were divorced. Well, that’s not the case now. Some of the breakups were scandalous, some were long overdue, and some were downright sad. But they all meant essentially the same thing: Time to start over.

According to longitudinal studies, nearly 50% of all marriages in the U.S. will end in divorce or separation. What’s more, the average age of a widowed single is just 55. There are a lot of reasons people wind up single in their 40s, 50s, or 60s, and none of them are reasons to quit the dating scene forever. It’s time to get back out there, and the following dating sites can help you meet someone new.

Best Overall Dating Sites for Over 40

Sometimes friends make pacts to get married if they’re still single at 40 (or 45, or 50, or whenever), but you can’t count on that half-joking agreement to save your love life. It’s a much safer bet to wade into the dating scene and find someone who truly, honestly, and deeply wants you — and not as a last resort.

Dating sites can offer singles the chance to flirt, date, and love again, and it’s easy to get started. We’ve reviewed several good options for daters who are over 40 and not ready to settle just yet.

Online Dating
★★★★★ 4.9/5.0

Match.com has come a long way since it launched in April 1995. This well-reputed dating site has honed its (read more)

  • Match is the world's longest running dating site
  • The Discover section has search filters by interests, looks, lifestyle, and more
  • Match is available in 24 countries and 15 languages

Match ranks at the top of many dating site lists like this one, and that’s for a good reason. Not only has Match been around longer than any of its competitors, but it also has more success stories (dates, relationships, and marriages) as well.

Since 1995, Match has honed its matchmaking algorithm to focus on the things that matter to singles. Its match recommendations take your lifestyle, interests, and preferences into account and deliver high-quality profiles worth your attention.

We’re satisfied with the caliber of singles on Match.com, and we think it can make a great place for singles over 40 because it already attracts well-educated and family-minded folks. In fact, about 75% of Match users are over 30, and 45% have children. The over-50 group is Match’s fastest-growing demographic, and that’s a good sign for mature daters seeking something real.

Online Dating
★★★★★ 4.8/5.0

EliteSingles.com maintains a sophisticated network of young professionals seeking a relationship. Over 80% of (read more)

  • Over 2 million monthly users
  • Premium members receive 20 wildcard matches a day
  • Search features include age, height, education, ethnicity, and lifestyle habits

Speaking of high-caliber dating, EliteSingles can offer a high-end dating experience for single professionals of the world. This free dating site caters to ambitious, intelligent, and successful singles looking for someone on the same level.

The EliteSingles platform has made a name for itself by exceeding expectations and setting a high bar for the online dating world. Over 85% of EliteSingles members have graduated from college, and over 90% say that they want to get in a relationship.

Daters on EliteSingles aren’t intimidated by wealth and smarts — they’re turned on by it. If you’re tired of lowering your standards or dating below your pay grade, then set up a free account on EliteSingles and see what its personalized matchmaking tools can do for you.

Online Dating
★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

Since its launch in 2000, eharmony has endeavored to find the formula for love. Its 29-dimension questionnaire (read more)

  • Over 2 million people have found love here
  • Users can filter their match recommendations by age or city
  • Compatibility Quiz identifies common interests, lifestyles, and goals

When eharmony launched in 2000, its number one goal was to reinforce relationships and strengthen marriages, and that philosophy hasn’t changed one bit in the last 20 years. By pioneering a psychology-driven matching system, eharmony has given singles greater insight into the dating scene and what qualities can make a great match.

An in-depth personality questionnaire forms the basis of eharmony’s matchmaking ability. The dating site assesses individual personality quirks, relationship goals, and core values, and then uses that information to generate a 29-dimension compatibility scoring system that is both accurate and easy to understand.

All singles have to do is go to their matches to see how they stack up with local date prospects. The word “compatible” will show up in green if you match each other in enough ways to make a relationship work. The Compatibility section of the profile will break down the specifics, giving you a percentage for how you compare in terms of religious values, extraversion, affection, altruism, social values, and more.

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Online Dating
★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

Zoosk is a socially savvy dating site known for its diverse membership base and behavioral matchmaking system. (read more)

  • Send messages to premium members for free
  • Over 3 million messages sent a day
  • Premium perks include photo verification and sending virtual gifts

Zoosk is one of the most active and engaging dating sites around, so it’s a natural choice for singles of a certain age. The free platform offers a variety of free and paid communication tools, and you can attract interest by sending likes, smiles, virtual gifts, and messages.

Over 40 million people have created dating profiles on Zoosk since it launched in 2007, and today’s Zoosk members typically engage 3 million messages per day collectively.

Zoosk relies on a behavioral matchmaking algorithm to inspire mutual attraction, and the platform learns what you like with every swipe, match, and message you send. You can swipe through matches in the Carousel, search for people using filters, or browse the SmartPick section to find viable date prospects on Zoosk.

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.3/5.0

ChristianMingle is a faith-based dating site for singles who want a relationship grounded in Christian values. (read more)

  • For singles interested in God-centered relationships
  • Over 3.5 million monthly users around the world
  • Available as an app on Google Play and the App Store

Over the last decade, ChristianMingle has been a blessing in the lives of many Christian singles around the world. The niche site has established a dating network based on shared values and beliefs, and it has worked wonders in many people’s love lives.

Reading through the ChristianMingle success stories can bring hope to singles who worry that they won’t meet someone or that love isn’t in God’s plan for them. Such fears and insecurities can disappear the moment an attractive person messages you back. People of faith can find their saving grace by conducting a profile search on ChristianMingle.

“Hold out for God’s best in a person, a true Bible-believing and living person,” said Katrinka and Gary in a testimonial. “Find someone you are very comfortable being with.”

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.2/5.0

Since its launch in 2002, BlackPeopleMeet has created an African-American singles network that stretches (read more)

  • One of the largest black singles networks in existence
  • Straightforward search and matching features
  • Use Tokens to appear higher in search results

BlackPeopleMeet is our favorite niche dating site for black and biracial singles seeking black and biracial dates. You don’t have to be a certain race or ethnicity to join BlackPeopleMeet, but the niche site does tend to attract more darker skinned singles than the average dating site or app.

BlackPeopleMeet began in 2002 because the People Media dating company saw an opportunity to satisfy a niche market and diversify the dating scene in one go.

Today, thousands of singles across North America have used BlackPeopleMeet to find love, friendship, and romance. “Through your service, I have finally met the man I’m going to marry,” said a woman from Oklahoma City. “I would definitely recommend this network to my friends. God bless.”

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.1/5.0

Plenty of Fish prides itself on being one of the best dating site for conversations. It supports 100% free and (read more)

  • Free registration, searches, and messaging
  • The Chemistry Test creates a compatibility framework
  • Over 1 billion messages sent per month

Most dating sites offer some free features or even a free trial, but PlentyOfFish is one of the few dating sites to offer free everything. You can send unlimited messages on the POF platform for free, and that’s a pretty compelling reason to create a dating profile here. I mean, what do you have to lose?

The POF community has grown by leaps and bounds over the last few years — because who doesn’t love free stuff? — and it currently includes over 150 million singles worldwide. Even more impressive, the PlentyOfFish platform sees over 4 million unique daily views and facilitates millions of conversations each week.

It’d be easy for such a large and free site to be overrun by scammers and spammers, but the POF team has taken strides to keep the unsavory characters out and create a safe and friendly space for singles of all ages. The POF Community Rules encourage members to be kind, respectful, safe, and real — or they won’t be members for very long.

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.1/5.0

In 2004, OkCupid's founders decided to create a fool-proof formula for love, and they launched a free dating (read more)

  • Free, unlimited communication for everyone
  • Singles can swipe or search for a compatible date
  • Over 91 million connections every year

In 2004, OkCupid sparked interest by bringing a math-driven approach to the online dating scene. Four Harvard math majors decided to come up with a large-scale formula for love, one that would be heavily influenced by personality quirks and dating preferences.

Today, OkCupid has amassed a treasure trove of over 4,000 questions ranging from “Do you like the taste of beer?” to “Do you believe in God?” This information-rich dating site allows singles to answer as many or as few questions as they like and rate how important that answer is to them. Their responses form the basis of the compatibility ratings that show up on every dating profile.

Many singles choose OkCupid as their go-to dating site or app because it’s fast, smart, fun, and, most importantly, free. You don’t have to subscribe to send messages on OkCupid, but you can get some great perks (i.e. seeing who’s liked you) by becoming an A-List member.

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Online Dating
★★★★ 4.0/5.0

In 2012, Tinder pioneered a swiping-based match system that empowered singles to connect with dates who liked (read more)

  • Supports active daters in 190+ countries
  • The swiping system creates over 12 million matches per day
  • Tinder Plus members have unlimited likes and 5 Super Likes

We’d be remiss to leave Tinder off any list of the best dating platforms. It’s Tinder, for crying out loud. It may not be perfect, and we definitely wish it didn’t attract quite so many creeps, but it can offer instant access to a very large and active dating pool, so it’s worth downloading and giving it a whirl.

In 2012, Tinder invented the swiping and mutual matching system that has become the status quo in the online dating scene, and it has been responsible for creating more than 30 billion matches in 190 countries.

Disclaimer: Tinder is definitely dominated by 20-somethings, so singles over 40 who want to date someone their age or older will likely have trouble making matches.

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Online Dating
★★★★ 4.0/5.0

Since its launch in 2014, Bumble has positioned itself as one of the queens of the online dating world. The (read more)

  • A feminist dating app puts singles on equal footing
  • 60% of Bumble matches turn into dates
  • Bumble Bizz and Bumble BFF spark non-romantic connections

Bumble is a female-led dating app that puts women first — literally. The dating app made a name for itself by requiring women to send the first message once a mutual match is formed.

Anyone can like anyone on Bumble, but, when it comes to a heterosexual match at least, the conversation can only get started if the woman sends a message within 24 hours (or 48 hours if the guy chooses to extend it). It’s free to match and chat on Bumble, though you can get some extra fun features with a Bumble Boost subscription.

Since its early days in 2014, Bumble has endeavored to inspire quality connections between genuine people, and it has set up progressive rules to ensure members behave themselves and put their best foot forward online. For instance, Bumble has banned photos of guns, hunting, and swimwear, and it also automatically flags and removes mirror selfies and pics of people in underwear.

Best LGBT Dating Site for Over 40

As more people come out of the closet, the LGBTQ+ dating scene becomes a more lively and diverse place to mingle. Whether you’re newly out or newly single (or perhaps a little bit of both), you can discover a world of dating possibilities by heading to an LGBTQ-friendly dating site like the ones listed below.

Online Dating
★★★★ 3.8/5.0

Since 1996, MenNation has connected over 93 million men around the globe. This men-only dating site measures (read more)

  • One of the largest gay hookup sites in the world
  • Search filters for age, location, physical attributes, and more
  • Available in 12 languages and counting

MenNation has one of the largest men-only hookup networks on the internet, and that’s saying quite a lot. Millions of gay, bi, and queer guys have created a dating personal ad here and used it to up their flirtation game.

Gay singles and couples can join this dating site to find easy dates within a certain mile radius. The simple search tools act as a reliable wingman to men in the mood for some sexy times.

The MenNation site is all about anonymous sex, so you can come right out and say what type of sexual encounter you’re looking for and solicit sex in private messages to local hotties.

Online Dating
★★★★ 3.5/5.0

LesbianPersonals.com is powered by Friend Finder Networks, so it encompasses a vast network of sexually active (read more)

  • Free membership includes viewing profiles and sending likes
  • Exchange revealing photos and videos privately online
  • Simple search filters by interests and appearance

LesbianPersonals is a sister site to MenNation, and it offers a similar interface and sex-positive environment — the only difference is that LesbianPersonals supports an exclusive woman nation.

Single women, lesbian couples, groups, and even straight couples are welcome to join LesbianPersonals and mix things up in a sexually charged chat or discussion group. The X-rated dating site includes instant messaging and video messaging, and it allows members to exchange racy photos in a private space to really heat things up.

Lesbians over 40 can join this anonymous dating site whenever they’re in the mood to flirt and possibly hook up with someone special.

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HER

Online Dating
★★★★ 3.5/5.0

HER is a women-only (or "womxn" as the team says) dating app that helps cis, trans, and non-binary identified (read more)

  • A quirky and unapologetic womxn-only dating community
  • Queer events get users connecting IRL
  • The constantly updated Feed facilitates social networking

HER is a dynamic womxn-only dating app with over 4 million members worldwide. We highly recommend joining HER — even if you’re just a little bi-curious about the whole dating chicks thing.

The HER community looks and feels like a big social network, and womxn can log on and share their thoughts, photos, and events anytime they please. It’s incredibly easy to make friends in this space. All you have to do is RSVP to a local book club or meetup on HER, and you can join a vibrant and diverse group of queer people.

“We believe dating should be fun,” the HER team said. “With in-app communities and HER-hosted events, you can find your people without tiring out your thumbs.”

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Online Dating
★★★ 3.4/5.0

Grindr became the world's first gay geosocial app in 2009, and it continues growing its all-male user base (read more)

  • Social networking for gay, bi, trans, and queer men
  • Location-based matches spark instant chemistry
  • Grindr Equality advocates for LGBTQ+ interests on the global stage

If you ask us, Grindr is the best thing that could have happened to the gay dating scene because it opens guys up to lots of romantic possibilities without putting any pressure on the new connection. Singles can download the app for free and start flirting in a private men-only space.

Grindr uses location data from your smartphone to identify the closest and hottest dates in your age range. Whether you’re a silver fox, a daddy, or a bear, you can create a Grindr profile to take your dating experience up a notch.

As of 2017, Grindr had over 27 million users, with a vast majority of its audience in the U.S. and the U.K., and it has been responsible for countless hookups, dates, and relationships in the LGBTQ+ community.

Do Adult Dating Sites Cater to Over-40 Singles?

Adult dating sites can definitely accommodate and satisfy singles over 40. After all, “adult” is right there in the name. If you want to mix things up in the bedroom, we recommend the following two dating sites. These anything-goes environments can certainly spice up your evenings, to say the least.

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.1/5.0

BeNaughty invites singles to walk on the wild side and explore their sexuality in a fun, free-wheeling (read more)

  • Sexually active adults in 10 countries
  • Browse the Like Gallery for hot singles
  • Stimulate conversation in intimate private messages

BeNaughty has to be one of the most audacious, exhilarating, and sexually active places to meet people in your area.

The hookup site has attracted singles of all ages and orientations, and its loose rules mean people can openly talk about their fetishes and fantasies without getting banned or blocked. You can start your search for hotties in the Like Gallery or go to the Search tab to find dates who meet your standards in terms of gender, age, location, body type, orientation, and ethnicity.

Online Dating
★★★★ 4.0/5.0

In 1996, Friend Finder Networks began harnessing the power of online networking to help adults meet sexually (read more)

  • Among the largest online sex and swinger communities
  • Completely free no-obligation registration
  • Live chat rooms and discussion forums open 24/7

Looking for a sexual awakening? Then AFF is there for you. Its erotic content is definitely only appropriate for adults, and many over-40 singles set up profiles hoping to arrange an anonymous hookup, threesome, or flirtation.

With over 97 million members, the AFF community is easily one of the largest of its kind. Singles and swingers flock to this platform hoping to make something happen on the down low. The sexually explicit forums have over 14 million group discussions that connect people all over the world.

You don’t have to use your real name on this site, and your profile picture doesn’t have to show your face (other parts are more interesting to this crowd anyway), so singles don’t have to worry about their sexual exploits impacting their real-life personal or professional lives.

What is the Best Dating Site for Serious Relationships?

In many cases, senior dating sites offer a more serious environment for singles who know what they want in life and love. The more mature the user base, the more likely you are to discover deep conversations and quality matches.

We have to give it to eharmony for consistently matching up long-term relationships and marriages. This dating site is serious about finding The One — not just someone — and it uses psychology to create authentic, human connections.

For Men
★★★★★ 4.7/5.0

When it comes to relationships, eharmony doesn't mess around. This dating site has crafted a time-tested (read more)

  • Over 2.3 million messages sent every week
  • Match formula pinpoints compatibility in lifestyle, temperament, and goals
  • Relatively even gender split

The compatibility ratings on eharmony can give singles valuable guidance when choosing a partner, and that makes it the best dating site for relationships in our book.

Is Bumble for Serious Relationships?

Absolutely, Bumble launched as a female-friendly option for online daters, and its progressive, values-driven mission has made it a go-to tool for serious daters from all walks of life. Check out this review of its most celebrated features:

For Women
★★★★ 4.4/5.0

Bumble has embraced its role as the world's feminist dating app. The app launched in 2014 with the unique (read more)

  • A female-friendly dating environment puts women in control
  • Zero tolerance for bullying, misogyny, and rude behavior
  • Conversations expire in 24 to 48 hours

We applaud Bumble for setting high standards and making sure users feel safe, open, and respected at all times. It is definitely a great place to find a relationship based on mutual admiration and equality.

Is Tinder for Serious Dating?

Tinder is kind of like the choose-your-own adventure book of the dating world. You can make it your own, and you have a lot of different options and paths to choose from. Whether you want a hookup or a relationship, you can use Tinder to find someone who’s on the same page.

For Men
★★★★ 4.0/5.0

Tinder gives singles a fast and fun way to mix things up online. The dating app's motto is "Single is a (read more)

  • Connect with attractive women near you
  • Free chat and matching features
  • Responsible for over 30 billion matches to date

Some folks may give Tinder a bad rap and say that it’s only good for hookups, but that’s not true for everyone. Plenty of singles have met their partners on Tinder and proven that love can happen anywhere and at any time.

How Do I Start Dating at 40?

We hear this question all the time from divorcees, widowers, and other singles over 40. It can be intimidating to re-enter the dating scene after a long absence, and a lot of traditional dating etiquette and relationship rules have changed thanks to online dating, texting, and other generational shifts.

Photo of a couple in their 40s

As a 40+ single, you have to be proactive in the dating scene and pursue dates online and offline.

For instance, singles who dated more than one person at a time used to be criticized as players or sluts, but now it’s perfectly normal to explore your options and go on dates with multiple people in the same week. Online dating makes it much easier to casually date until you find the perfect person to go steady, be exclusive, or start a relationship with you.

If you want another example, online dating used to have a stigma against it, and now over 49 million Americans have tried online dating. Joining a dating site is the best way to put yourself out there and meet people who fit your idea of a perfect date. You can use these tips to make your profile stand out and attract the best and the brightest online. Your age doesn’t have to hold you back — it can actually be an attractive quality to singles looking for dates with more experience, maturity, and spending power.

There’s no foolproof guide for dating in your 40s — you’ve just got to do it. Everyone goes at their own pace and comes up with their own strategies as they gain more experience. It may take a little trial and error to find the best dating site or date venue for you, but singles who are patient, polite, and proactive typically see the greatest success stories.

Over time, you’ll figure out what works for you and what makes you feel comfortable and attractive. Just keep an eye out for fake profiles, and don’t rush into anything too quickly, and you’ll do just fine.

These Sites Can Turn Dating Over 40 Into an Adventure

If you find yourself single and in your 40s, you don’t have to despair. Today’s dating scene is actually more user-friendly than it’s ever been, and singles of all ages can use technology to connect with dates online and offline.

We’ve listed several of our favorite dating sites for mature singles, and we know they can work if you give them your best shot. These platforms represent the opportunity to pick yourself up, get back out there, and find love again. It could be an empowering, self-affirming, and life-changing experience.

You can expand your date horizons with just a few clicks on a popular dating site or app, and it’s free to set up a profile and take a look around, so, seriously, what are you waiting for?