- The best reality dating shows explore a range of experiences, from trying to find a good match on a beautiful island to going on an awkward first date and wondering if this is the moment when true love will be discovered. The best dating shows can be either grounded and realistic or feel like a fantasy, as sometimes it’s nice to sit back, relax, and watch people find love in a fairy tale kind of situation. Those who love the reality TV genre can check out these dating shows and there is a wide range for everyone. Some of the best reality dating shows explore the emotions of going on a first date and others are juicy fun and take place on islands and have a vacation vibe.
Reality TV fans have so many shows to choose from, whether they’re looking for a real estate show, a cooking competition, or they want to learn more about a favorite celebrity’s regular life. But some of the most popular and beloved reality shows are ones that focus on dating, whether singles are going on awkward first dates or they’re getting married shortly after meeting.
From Netflix shows that go beyond physical appearance and talk about what’s on the inside to a few reality series set in beautiful, sunny locations, there are many reality series about finding love that Reddit users recommend.
Updated on December 9th, 2022 by Aya Tsintziras:
The best reality dating shows explore a range of experiences, from trying to find a good match on a beautiful island to going on an awkward first date and wondering if this is the moment when true love will be discovered. The best dating shows can be either grounded and realistic or feel like a fantasy, as sometimes it’s nice to sit back, relax, and watch people find love in a fairy tale kind of situation. Those who love the reality TV genre can check out these dating shows and there is a wide range for everyone. Some of the best reality dating shows explore the emotions of going on a first date and others are juicy fun and take place on islands and have a vacation vibe.
Stream on HBO Max
Redditor alittlelessconvo enjoys this reality dating show that some might not have heard of. The fan wrote, “Buried deep in the HBO Max library is Singletown. It’s basically the same demographics as Love Island with a Temptation Island set up (couples are split and go on dates with different people) and it is set in the middle of London!”
Hosted by Joel Dommett and Emily Atack, Singletown is about people who are coupled up who spend time in London, so they can see if someone else is a better fit for them. It’s a juicy premise and even more fun to see if anyone ends up together.
Stream on Prime Video
The MTV series Catfish is a spin-off of the documentary from 2010 and has been going strong since season 1 premiered in 2012. Hosts Nev Schulman and Max Joseph worked together for several seasons to help people meet the love interests that they had been chatting with online but wondered if this person was actually real. A few seasons ago, Kamie Crawford replaced Max. The hosts always have a fun, sweet dynamic and the show is pure entertainment.
Redditor FearOrRegret mentioned Catfish and said it’s “100% messy drama and I love it.” The episodes are unexpected, and even when it seems like someone is definitely lying about their identity, each season is packed with surprises.
Rock Of Love (2007-2009)
Stream on Hulu
Redditor crybabytheghost asked “Does anyone remember Rock Of Love?” The series features Brett Michaels from Poison looking for love. The show has three seasons and there are 25 women in each one. They are tested and then Bret decides who he would go out with.
The show is definitely on the cheesy side, but those who love older reality series will be happy to binge-watch it. After, Bret starred on a VH1 show called Bret Michaels: Life as I Know It where he shared more of his life.
90 Day Fiance (2014-)
Stream on Discovery+
90 Day Fiance is one of the most popular reality dating shows since it is so packed with drama. Redditor Clu3less_1 said that they “love” it in a thread about the best shows to binge. The show has a good premise: a couple, one American and one from another country, decide whether to get married within 90 days so they can have a certain type of visa and stay in the United States.
Over several seasons, the bold and memorable personalities of the show have become known to fans who follow them on social media and like keeping up with what their lives are like after their seasons are finished.
Love Is Blind (2020-)
Stream on Netflix
From the memorable moments in season 1 to the big surprises in Love Is Blind season 2, reality TV fans love this Netflix series and can’t get enough episodes. Season 3, which aired in October and November 2022, was as juicy as ever and cemented why this is such a fan-favorite show that feels binge-worthy.
Reddit user uncategorized0002 said Love Is Blind is “probs the best dating show out there?” and the “premise is well-planned” with two couples who did get married from season 1. Two relationships worked out from season 2 as well, making this an interesting and exciting reality series that shows what it’s like when people talk via pods and then get engaged. Fans become invested in the cast members right away and like the steps that each couple goes through.
Love Island (2019-)
Stream on CBS
Love Island is often mentioned as one of the most engaging and riveting reality dating shows. The idea of watching people see who has chemistry on a gorgeous island is always going to be appealing. While it can be possible to predict which couples will genuinely like each other and which ones won’t work out, the journey and ride is still a lot of fun.
One Redditor said that this series will “always be my favorite love-themed reality show” and there are “wonderful and heartwarming relationships” that are “romantic or friendship.” The US version started in 2019.
FBoy Island (2021)
Stream on HBO Max
FBoy Island is HBO Max’s recent reality dating show that has a similar premise to Love Island: three women and 24 men travel to an island where the men are considered “f-boys.” Viewers see who has chemistry and who could end up together. Sadly, the show was canceled (via Variety), but those who haven’t checked it out yet can watch binge-watch both seasons.
There are many great dating reality shows set on tropical islands, and this one is a favorite. Reddit user RestEducational3787 loves FBoy Island and wrote, “Nikki Glaser is an awesome hilarious host.”
Sexy Beasts (2021-)
Stream on Netflix
Sexy Beasts is a great pick for fans of Love Is Blind who like a different kind of show that focuses on what’s inside and forgets about appearances for a moment. On this Netflix show, singles go on dates while wearing an animal costume, and after the date, they show each other what they look like. This is a good hook that feels engaging and distinct from other shows that can feel tired and formulaic after a while.
Reddit user uncategorized0002 likes this series and says it has a “different cast per episode” and is “just a fun dating show.” The Netflix version has two seasons and is inspired by the British series.
Too Hot To Handle (2020-)
Stream on Netflix
Reddit user uncategorized0002 also recommended Too Hot To Handle and said it’s “funny, but still has direction/purpose.”
Another popular reality series on Netflix, Too Hot To Handle sees singles going to an island and trying to abstain from sex. If they win, they get $100,000. This is a great show because it’s about finding love and seeing who is compatible, but it’s also a fun competition. It’s enjoyable to try to guess who’s going to win while getting to know the various personalities. There have been four seasons so far and the show seems to be a hit with fans of the genre.
Married At First Sight (2014-)
Stream on Hoopla
Reddit user No-Introduction8678 said Married At First Sight is “incredible but more serious than Love Island.” Executive produced by Love Is Blind creator Chris Coelen, Married At First Sight features people who decide to get married without knowing anything about each other.
After they tie the knot, they see if they are truly meant to be together or not. It’s a fascinating premise for a show, and it’s definitely hard to stop watching. With so many seasons available, this is a good show to become invested in since there are so many episodes when the need to binge-watch a juicy reality series is there.
Temptation Island (2019)
Stream on Peacock
Of the reality shows about dating on an island, Reddit user LaterDays13 posted, “My favorite is Temptation Island on TBS.”
While the show does sound like Love Island and has a similar title, it’s different in one way: singles and couples live in a villa as the couples see if they are attracted to other people and want to explore dating others. This adds a different element and serves as a great hook. It’s hard not to want to reach the end of each season to know which couples will stay together and who has found a better connection through this experience.
Dating Around (2019-)
Stream on Netflix
While there are many reality dating shows about going on vacation and trying to meet a match, it can also be entertaining to watch people going on first dates. Reddit user kaykay310 said that when it comes to reality dating shows, “I like Love Is Blind and Dating Around on Netflix.”
First dates can be awkward, and Dating Around takes that idea and runs with it, allowing viewers to see couples meeting each other for the first time. The premise is different and unique: each episode is about one person who goes on five first dates. They hope to go on a second date with one person. This is an incredibly relatable show since not everyone can relate to finding love on a beautiful island while staying in a cool villa. But showing the range of possible first dates feels realistic.
Bachelor In Paradise (2014-)
Buy on AppleTV
Many reality TV fans love The Bachelor franchise, and there are several seasons worth of entertainment since there is also The Bachelorette.
One Redditor loves Bachelor In Paradiseand wrote, “season 3 is my fav!” Fans of the franchise will definitely want to check out every spin-off, and viewers see past cast members return, this time in a beautiful, sunny location. While many who have seen the original show like to watch this spin-off, it’s possible to watch it without having seen any Bachelor seasons as it can function as a standalone series.
First Dates (2013-)
Unavailable to Stream
Reddit user quick_dry recommended a British reality show: “My dose of wholesome goodness comes from First Dates” and mentioned that there are many seasons.
The show airs on Channel 4 and features couples going on first dates at London’s Paternoster Chop House restaurant. The show feels very natural and genuine. It really does feel like viewers are getting the chance to watch dates as they are unfolding. All the awkward and uncomfortable parts of first dates are explored here, from not knowing what to say to hoping that the other person finds the conversation compelling and funny.