Do Platforms Like OnlyFans Compete With Dating Apps?

Are you wondering if social media platforms like OnlyFans compete with dating apps or perhaps will replace them in the near future? Several discussions are ongoing in the online space among Gen Z and Millennials on this topic. Today, we’ll answer this question and bring some clarity to the discourse.

We will explain how OnlyFans and dating apps work and why people use them. Additionally, we will provide statistics on the performance of the dating app market in recent years to determine how the growth of OnlyFans has impacted it. Let’s get started with an overview of OnlyFans.

What Is OnlyFans, and How Does It Work?

OnlyFans is a subscription-based social media platform that allows its users to create and monetize their content. Creators on OnlyFans post videos and photos on the platform while their audience pays monthly subscriptions to access this content. Launched in 2016, OnlyFans became very popular during the COVID lockdown when sex workers started using the platform to share and monetize adult content.

Today, OnlyFans has ballooned from a platform mainly used by sex workers to post adult content to a space that celebrities, artists, entertainers, and aspiring content creators use to grow their audience and monetize their craft. Some popular stars on OnlyFans include Cardi B, DJ Khaled, Fat Joe, Blac Chyna, Tyga, Bella Thorne, Aaron Carter, and Chad Johnson.

These celebrities use OnlyFans for different reasons. For example, Cardi B used it to promote her hit track ‘WAP,’ which features Mega Thee Stallion. Also, DJ and Fat Joe used the platform to deliver speeches to their fans in early 2021.

How Much Do Creators Make On OnlyFans

An overview of OnlyFans won’t be complete without mentioning how much creators can make on the platform. The minimum subscription fee creators can charge on OnlyFans is $4.99 monthly, while the maximum is $49.99. Creators can also earn money through tips and private gifts from their fans.

While OnlyFans primarily operates as a subscription-based platform where content creators charge a fee for access to their exclusive content, it is important to note that some creators may offer free accounts. The availability of free accounts depends entirely on the individual creator and their chosen business model.

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Creators may choose to offer free onlyfans accounts as a way to attract a larger audience and entice potential subscribers. With a free account, users can typically access a limited selection of content or enjoy previews of the creator’s offerings. However, to access the creator’s full content library or engage in more personalized interactions, users would need to upgrade to a paid subscription.

Some creators make the bank off OnlyFans, earning millions monthly, while others make hundreds of dollars. So there is no clear-cut answer on how much creators can make on OnlyFans. The earnings depend on the number of loyal fans they have and the quality of content they create

What Are Dating Apps, and How Do They Work?

Dating apps are online platforms that connect singles of all ages and backgrounds looking for hookups, casual dating, friendship, or marriage with like-minded people. Online dating apps, such as, came into existence about three decades ago with the launch of, the world’s first online dating website. Since then, the industry has snowballed, and it is estimated that 1.500 dating sites and apps exist worldwide.

The workings of dating apps differ from one another, but the general concept and goal are the same. Interested users join the app by creating an account, providing information about themselves, uploading their pictures, and sharing information about the kind of person they are looking for. Dating apps combine this info into a profile and make it visible to others on the platform.

Once you successfully create a profile on the app, you can start looking at the profiles of other singles that fit your criteria. If you see anyone you like, you can start a conversation with them by sending a direct message. Likewise, other users on the dating app can view your profile and message you if they are interested in you.

Do Platforms Like OnlyFans Compete With Dating Apps?

Although dating apps and OnlyFans are platforms people can use to meet others outside their social circles, the primary goals of both platforms differ. While dating apps are mainly to connect singles with other singles, OnlyFans is targeted at creators who enjoy posting high-quality content and users craving these kinds of content. Thus, we believe both platforms will continue to exist side by side, and OnlyFans will likely not replace dating apps in the near future.

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However, it’s important to note that individuals that are on dating apps to seek a distraction from their boredom and loneliness rather than actively pursuing love or friendship are transitioning from dating apps to OnlyFans to get greater entertainment. Additionally, more and more creators are using dating apps to promote their OnlyFans profiles. Thus, Platforms like OnlyFans and dating apps will likely complement rather than compete with each other.

Dating Apps Growth Statistics After the Emergence of OnlyFans

To better understand the impact platforms like OnlyFans have had on dating apps, let’s take a closer look at the growth statistics of dating apps since the emergence of OnlyFans.

Data presented by Statista Digital Market Outlook shows that dating apps grew exponentially during the COVID-19 lockdown, almost the same time when OnlyFans’ growth skyrocketed. According to the data, 220 million users started using online dating apps and websites in the last five years, pushing the cumulative number of users to 573.9 million.

The report projects that 25 million new users will try dating services in 2024, increasing the total number of users to 598.9 million. By 2027, the number of users worldwide is expected to hit the 672 million mark.

Further, the data shows that revenue from the entire dating services market grew by 66% in the past five years, increasing from $5.24 billion in 2018 to $7.88bn in 2023. The market recorded the highest growth in 2021. However, the growth slowed in 2022 after the lockdown as things started returning to normal. Despite this slow growth, Statista projects that this revenue will grow to $8.15 billion next year.

These statistics show that the dating apps market has grown significantly in the last couple of years. In other words, the emergence and explosion in the popularity of OnlyFans didn’t impact the market negatively.


Platforms like OnlyFans and dating apps complement each other instead of competing with each other. Recent statistics show both markets have grown significantly in recent years. Therefore it is reasonable to conclude that OnlyFans or other similar platforms will unlikely replace dating apps in the foreseeable future, as their primary goals and uses of both are different.

Jeremy Edwards
Jeremy Edwards
On Chain Analysis Data Engineer. Lives in sunny Perth, Australia. Investing and writing about Crypto since 2014.

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