What’s He Like? Check the Lulu App

What’s He Like? Check the Lulu App

By Deborah Schoeneman

    Nov. 20, 2013

A few weeks ago, after Alexandra Amin, an associate at Warner Brothers, split up with a representative she have been dating for per year, her friend shared with her about a unique, free, female-friendly social network software that allows females anonymously review men who will be their Facebook buddies.

“She had been like, ‘He’s so crazy, you ought to speed him on Lulu, ’ ” said Ms. Amin, 29, whom lives in l. A. Ms. Amin provided the ex hashtags including #NeverSleepsOver and #FriendZone. He scored a 6.9 away from 10, which, she admitted, ended up being “lower than he really deserves. ”

On Lulu, females can rate males in groups — ex-boyfriend, crush, together, hooked-up, buddy or general — with a quiz that is multiple-choice. Females, their sex confirmed by their Facebook logins, include pink hashtags to a man’s profile which range from the great (#KinkyInTheRightWays) towards the bad (#NeverSleepsOver) into the unsightly (#PornEducated). The hashtags are widely used to determine a rating generated by Lulu, which range from 1 to 10, that appears under the man’s profile picture. (The company’s spokeswoman declined to describe the reviews algorithm. ) Guys can truly add hashtags, which can be found in blue, however these are not factored in their general rating.

The service has provided a sort of “Take Back the Internet” moment for young women who have come of age in an era of revenge porn and anonymous, possibly ominous suitors since it was started last year by Alexandra Chong, who has a law degree from the London School of Economics. “The thing that received us to Lulu had been that dating with no guide may be the scariest thing you can certainly do, ” said Erin Foster, 31, an actress and author. “Meeting somebody call at the entire world whenever you’re perhaps not in college or don’t work with one another or have actually mutual buddies — you have got no concept exactly exactly what you’re getting into. ”

Ms. Chong, 32, a previous person in the Jamaica Fed Cup tennis group, has become relocating Lulu from London to ny, where she said the viewers on her application had grown 600 % within the last few half a year, based on the analytics provider Mixpanel. “The trendsetting money for ladies is ny and that is where we must be, ” she stated recently.

Sewell Robinson, 24, whom lives into the East Village and works for a marketing agency, estimated that 70 percent of her friends that are female Lulu; she’s got evaluated 10 males in the app, some generously. “I have written a reviews that are few market man friends, ” Ms. Robinson said. “If a girl that is random them in a club and it is notably interested, i would like them to possess an excellent rep on Lulu. ”

But she’s additionally panned males, in a spirit that is sisterly. “I think often girls feel them one thing to bond over, and you will give russian brides club advice to a lady you’ve never ever met before. Like they don’t have that much energy when you look at the hookup world, ” Ms. Robinson stated, “but this gives” accordingly enough, the application had been introduced in sororities, which representatives of this ongoing business continue steadily to check out. “Sororities are a recognised network of girls who will be referring to relationships, and term spreads quickly, ” Ms. Chong stated. “We changed the merchandise a great deal making use of their help. ” (She stated that one fourth of most university ladies now utilize Lulu, based on Mixpanel. )

Ms. Chong by herself never belonged up to a sorority; she attended Florida Global University on a tennis scholarship and after legislation school worked for Upstream, a sizable marketing firm that is mobile. She credited her entrepreneurialism in component to her Canadian mother, whoever household aided begin the Calgary Stampede, summer time rodeo, and her Chinese-Jamaican daddy, whom she stated was created bad but won a lottery and utilized the windfall to start out a tourism business.

She got the theory for Lulu throughout a boozy brunch with feminine friends your day after A valentine’s day that is awkward setup. “We were all sharing tales about dudes, relationships and sex, ” Ms. Chong stated. “There had been rips and laughter. ” She determined that women needed a focused google for dating — a “Guygle. ”

“once you Google a man, you don’t wish to know if he voted Republican or exactly what he penned a paper about in college, ” Ms. Chong stated. “You need to know if moms like him. Does he have manners that are good? Is he sweet? ”

Ms. Chong founded Lulu with a buddy, Alison Schwartz, an assistant that is former the literary representative Amanda Urban, referred to as Binky. Final February, they secured $2.5 million in funding from individuals including Yuri Milner, a very early investor in Twitter, and Hosain Rahman, a creator of Jawbone.

Ms. Schwartz, 35, is Lulu’s editorial manager. She stated she drew from Cosmopolitan and Glamour publications to create the app’s supportive sound. “Our goal ended up being always to seem like just exactly how women that are young to their very own friends, ” she said.

They presently employ about 30 individuals and now have finalized an eight-year rent for a 5,500-square-foot raw area in Chelsea, where they want to go the business year that is early next.

Ms. Chong not any longer has need certainly to be an energetic Lulu individual; she actually is searching for flats downtown with her boyfriend, Jack Brockway, 33, a professional photographer who’s the nephew of Sir Richard Branson, the Virgin Group creator, while the bro of Ned Rocknroll, Kate Winslet’s husband that is new.

Ms. Chong and Mr. Brockway met final springtime on Maui at a kite-surfing and networking event where she had been offering a lecture in which he ended up being shooting a promotional vid. That they had a brief make-out session and went their split methods.

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