Lulu App: Not at All Empowering to Women


So I have a shameful confession to make (but don't we all?). I've had my fair share of relationship disappointments, one of which transpired so badly that I seriously considered drafting a letter to the mother of the young man who wronged me to explain how much pain her ladykilling boy had brought to several vulnerable young women in a short period of time (oh, college!).

I only mulled this over because she boasted about her "perfect" firstborn son on Facebook a couple of times a week, and 20-year-old me thought she needed to know the image she'd painted of her offspring couldn't have been further from the truth (because I was totally in a position to make that call...).

Thankfully, I could never bring myself to write the note, which is upsetting and horrifying to even think about now. If I still wanted to malign this individual, however, I could do so through new male-rating app Lulu, which lets girls users rate men "like restaurants," as the Huffington Post put it. 

Lulu, which is described as "the first-ever app for reading and writing reviews of guys, sharing tips, and having fun with your girlfriends," is free on iTunes and currently has more than 100,000 monthly users. The app connects through a person's Facebook page, and once it has been downloaded, the user can see how others have rated her male friends.

Female users can critique everyone from platonic guy friends to hookups and former boyfriends. You rate their best and worst qualities, which can be as innocuous as #Doesn'tAskQuestions or #Meh to as spiteful as #TotalF**kingD**khead. It's paradise for someone who takes pleasure in trashing former flings, especially since all reviews are anonymous and there's absolutely no accountability. So is this the woman's response to years upon years of objectification and chauvinists? I sure hope not.

After a friend explained the concept of Lulu, I downloaded the app (but didn't review anyone) to see what it was all about. To my relief, the majority of my male friends hadn't been rated, most likely because Lulu is fairly new and not as big as, say, Instagram yet. Two of my friends, however, had been ripped apart by ex-girlfriends, and though I'm not close with the men ranked, I felt for them as I scrolled through their scathing reviews.

Did I really need to learn that my former coworker is #Manscaped but a #CommitmentPhobe who #SmellsAmazeballs and is #KinkyInTheRightWays? No, and neither do his curious romantic prospects. They will just need to find out the hard (but genuine) way: by getting to know him in real life and figuring out whether he's a gem or trouble. In theory, it would be nice not to have to find out the hard way that someone is a womanizer, but there's a reason shortcuts don't always bring the best results, and almost everything can be a teaching experience.

This isn't to say guys don't do the same thing to girls in a much less formal manner. They have the Hot or Not app and can joke about each other's respective girlfriends/hookups in conversation, but that doesn't make any of this right or justifiable. This sort of mean-spirited dialogue will exist whether Lulu lasts or goes under, but it's not a valuable use of anyone's time (at least in excess, with regards to guy talk/girl talk on dating).

I understand some of you have been emotionally bulldozed, probably more than once too. You want justice, and for a while, you may wish for the person who clipped your wings to get hurt 10 times worse than he/she hurt you, because he/she deserves it.

After a while, carrying around this brand of negative energy and resentment does nothing but poison you, and though Lulu certainly isn't as destructive as plotting to destroy the guy/girl who drop-kicked your heart with no remorse, it's not going to open the door to healthy, good relationships or empower you. 

Stay off Lulu, minimize your smartphone time, and go out and meet new people. I promise you'll be a lot happier.