Text message and a red flag.

Why you should block him if he starts ‘negging’ you.

If he negs your dating profile, don't meet up with him.

Did he compliment you but it seemed a little … off?

It’s nice that he chose something specific about you to comment on.

He says you’re not his usual type but he still just had to message you.

That means you’re just so hot that he couldn’t resist, even if you’re not his usual type, right?

Maybe you could be the one to prove him wrong about his type?

We’re here to explain why you shouldn’t take the bait.

What Is Negging?

Text message insulting short hair.

‘Negging’ is a pick up artist technique which is basically an insult wrapped up in a compliment. It’s also used by narcissists and is a potential red flag for future emotional abuse.

Other examples include:

  • “I usually only date models, but there’s something really sexy about you.”
  • “You’re so hot. You’d look even hotter if …”
  • “I don’t tend to go for smaller boobs but you pull it of really well.”

The idea is to put you on edge and knock your self-esteem. The compliment it’s wrapped in tricks you into thinking that he really likes you, but the insult plays on those little insecurities we all have of not being quite good enough.

‘Negging’ Is a Power Play.

Man rugby tackling another man.

He’s trying to get the upper hand.

By putting you down, he feels like he’s raising himself up.

This power dynamic is how he wants things to continue.

He’s Trying to Damage Your Confidence.

Let’s face it. Online dating is a shit show.

Rejection. Dick pics. General depravity.

All of this can wear down your confidence in men and in yourself. There comes a time when you start to feel like maybe you’re not as great as you thought you were. Which is the exact feeling that ‘negging’ relies upon.

Negging Is a Tactic.

Man playing chess.

He’s done this before.

He’ll do it again.

He’s a player. A pick-up artist. He sends these negs out to all the women he matches with. Then he sits back and sees who takes the bait.

He’s Standard-Shaming You.

Oh, you think you’re too good for him?

When he negs you, he’s trying to remind you that you aren’t a supermodel, so you shouldn’t be holding out for one. (But trust us, they ‘neg’ supermodel types too!) So maybe you should lower your standards and give him a try?

No way! No one should be sinking so low as to give a ‘negger’ a chance!

He Thinks He’s Too Good for You.

Man with arrogant smile against green wall.

He’s deluded.

This belief that he’s better than you is just a coping mechanism to deal with deep insecurity. It’s so deep down that he’s even convinced himself of his own greatness in the same way that people can believe their own lies if they tell them enough times.

Or he’s a narcissist and really believes he’s better than everyone else. Either way, hardly a catch.

He Has No Manners.

It is HIGHLY unlikely that he doesn’t know what he’s doing, but there is a slither of possibility that he is just socially incompetent.

Maybe he thinks it’s just ‘banter’. That there’s no difference between how he should talk to you and how he talks to the lads when he’s drunk.

Do you really want to be treated like a ‘bro’ by your date?

He’s a Negative Person.

Grown man in red shirt frowning.

OK, so we are reeally giving him the benefit of the doubt here.

‘Negging’ is such an established tactic that in the vast majority of cases, it’s done with intent.

But if there is a possibility that his ‘neg’ wasn’t intended in that way (he will obviously just lie anyway of course), starting off on such a downer isn’t exactly a great prediction of the future.

What to Do If He Starts ‘Negging’ You?

Woman holding her hand out to stop someone.


Don’t even call him out on it. Don’t explain to him why it’s wrong. There is no point at all in giving any time to men who don’t respect you.


If a guy negs you before you’ve even met him, be grateful that he’s shown you his true colours before you got all dressed up and wasted money on an Uber to meet him.