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Hatfishing is the act of exclusively posting pictures to a dating profile while wearing a hat or head covering, hiding a bad haircut, receding hairline, or baldness. Hatfishing is a play on words derivative of Catfishing, the act of creating a fake persona and tricking someone into pursuing a relationship maliciously. A hatfish, by comparison, does not involve a fake persona, rarely involves any ill will, and only involves trickery of the camera.

Hatfishing may or may not be intentional and is considered a humorous byproduct of the “hat and sunglasses” trope of male dating profile pictures.


Katherine received a well-written first message from Adam and was immediately interested in a date. Adam happened to only have one picture on his dating profile: a very handsome picture of him skiing in the Alps, in full ski gear. After a light-hearted chat and phone call, they decided to meet for dinner. Upon meeting in person, Katherine was surprised to discover that Adam shaves his head. Katherine teased Adam about being hatfished while thoroughly enjoying their date.