47 Sweet Ways to Tell Someone You Love Them With Your Words & Actions

Wondering how to tell someone you love them for the first time? Ponder carefully, because this is a moment they’ll remember for a long time to come. 

How to Tell Someone You Love Them

Taking the step from dating into a relationship isn’t always easy, especially if you’re feeling shy or awkward about it. But sometimes, you may be completely sure that you’re in love even though you don’t know how to share the news. If you’re wondering how to tell someone that you love them, don’t hold that thought.

Falling in love is special, and revealing how intensely you’ve fallen for someone is just as special. You may feel awkward or just confused at first. But you’re not alone.

Of course, telling someone you love them isn’t an easy step to take. After all, expressing your love for someone is also a commitment to pledge.

If you’re certain that what you have in mind is true love, here are a few cute yet special ways to tell a special someone that you’re in love with them. [Read: What is true love? 22 signs to know if what you’re feeling is indeed true]

Before you utter those three words…

Saying ‘I love you’ is a special and important thing. Don’t just throw those words out there for the sake of it!

If you’re contemplating telling someone you have fallen for them hard, there are a few tips you need to think about first.

1. If you aren’t sure of your feelings, don’t say anything

If you know that your partner has stronger feelings than you, don’t just say “I love you” to make them happy. You have to mean it. Otherwise, it is pointless and it just leads them on.

Save the words until you know for sure. [Read: How to express your feelings – 16 must-know ideas to speak your mind]

2. Know that everyone expresses love differently

When it comes to learning how to tell someone you love them, you need to know this important point. It might be that your partner isn’t big on words, but they show they love you in other ways.

Maybe they buy thoughtful gifts, do small things for you, or call to make sure you got home safely. These are all ways to express love to someone without words. [Read: 28 cute ways to show affection in a relationship even if it feels awkward]

3. You can slowly build up to the L word

Rather than just jumping straight in there, one way to build up to the L word is to occasionally mention something you love about this person. From their reactions, you’ll be able to figure out whether they feel the same as you.

4. Don’t say “I love you” to cover something up

Don’t use the words ‘I love you’ to cover up something you did wrong or to resolve a conflict. In this case, you’re being deceitful and you’re only doing it because the L word softens the blow for your partner.

These words should only be uttered when the time is right. [Read: Guilty conscience – What it is and 21 emotional signs of guilt people feel]

How to tell someone you love them

There are many ways to pour out the thoughts in your heart, but as with everything else, there are a few good ways and a few not-so-good ways.

Firstly, if you’ve just been talking to them for a while or have only been on a few dates, you shouldn’t be telling them that you love them! For now, start by letting them know how much you like them. Love can enter the picture when you’re ready for a serious commitment!

Use this guide on how to tell someone you like them – 18 risk-free ways to start dating someone first. And then, read on!

When you’re ready for more love in your life, you can use direct ways to get the message across. There really is no better way to declare your love for someone than to tell them face-to-face.

For the timid lovers, fret not; we’ve got a few sweet ways to create a special memory here. If you’re not comfortable being direct when you tell someone you love them, then you can always go the indirect route too. [Read: 32 reasons why you love someone, the psychology of love and why it exists]

1. When you’re sitting next to each other

When you’re sitting next to this person during a date and it’s just the both of you, sit close and prepare yourself for a confession. Get close to them and whisper it in their ear.

It doesn’t matter if you’re shy or feel awkward about it, it’ll seem cute and very romantic. You can just say it, kiss their cheek softly, and flash your cutest smile. [Read: When to say “I love you” for the first time in a relationship]

2. Build the tension

Call your date a day earlier and tell them that you want to say something important and you feel really shy to talk about. Even if your date asks you to talk about it over the phone, just hold the thought and make plans for the next day.

When you’re sitting together after a good date the next day and your date does ask you to say what you have in mind, just tell your date that you’re feeling really awkward about it. Wait for your date to start pestering you, which they eventually will.

Within a few minutes, all your nervousness will turn into excitement, and both of you would be laughing and teasing each other. And somewhere along the way, your confession will slip out even before you know it! [Read: The first “I love you” – How to say it and get it right]

3. After a separation

Has your sweetheart gone away for a weekend or a little vacation? Do you miss them? Use it as the perfect opportunity to get the message across.

When you meet again after a while, tell your date that you missed them a lot. And somewhere in the conversation, hold their hand and tell them that you think you’re falling in love with that person, more with every day.

4. Write a letter

If you just can’t work your courage up to express your love for the special someone in a conversation, you can write a letter instead.

You don’t need to be a writer to express your feelings for someone. Think of a few lines and start writing. Very soon, the words will follow. You could use these tips on how to write a romantic love letter to help you write the perfect one. And end the note with a heartfelt “I love you…”

5. Send them a love meme

If you can’t use your voice, use a love meme. Pick a perfect meme that expresses your feelings.

The next time you text them, find the right moment to send them the meme. If you’re wondering how to tell someone you love them, sometimes, a funny but heartfelt meme can make quite a deep impression. [Read: How to flirt over text and type your way into someone’s heart]

6. Send a gift

Too scared to even be seen around your date when you express your feelings? Sending a beautiful gift may be the best way forward for you.

This is still an incredibly romantic and thoughtful way to tell someone you love them, even though you won’t be in the same room.

Pick a romantic gift for your date, be it a box of chocolates, flowers, or anything else that you know your date would love. And within the gift, add a small note which says “I love you.” [Read: 20 gift ideas for your girlfriend that are creative and thoughtful]

7. Text a love message

Expressing your love for someone is always best-done face to face. But if you want to use a phone to get the message across, so be it.

Texting is pretty impersonal. So only text your love confession if you’re just too shy or anxious to say it in person. Maybe once you get the initial confession out of the way, you can arrange a date so that you can talk about your feelings further. [Read: 14 signs he wants to say ‘I love you’ but is holding back]

8. On a late-night call

Do both of you spend late nights talking to each other over the phone for long hours? Then you’ll know that there will be occasional bursts of romance, love, and mush every now and then in phone conversations.

It may start off with an “I miss you” or an “I’m so happy to have met you,” but work up the courage to say “I love you.” You may be nervous to tell them, but once you get the words out, you’ll feel a lot better.

9. Tell them how much you appreciate them

Unfortunately, people don’t express their appreciation for others enough. So, if you frequently thank them for doing nice things for you or simply thank them for being in your life, then that is a good message of love to send them.

Saying “thank you” means a lot to another person. [Read: 16 ways to show your appreciation for someone you love]

10. The power of emojis and GIFs

Everyone uses emojis, but have you ever stopped to consider the meaning of them? When you are texting someone, you don’t see their body language and you miss the nuances of their message.

So, sending heart or kissy emojis tells them you love them. Also, a loving GIF will also give them the right message.

11. Write them a love poem

This strategy might not be perfect for everyone, but it certainly is charming. Whether you write the poem yourself or not, make sure it says what you want to convey to them.

Love poems help a lot when you want to tell someone you love them but don’t want to use those exact words. [Read: Being in love – are you in love with the idea of love?]

12. Text them a love song

Find a video on Youtube of a love song that expresses your feelings toward them. Then, text it to them. You can accompany it with “this song makes me think of you.”

When they listen to the lyrics, they will know that you are also thinking the same thing that the singer is singing about. [Read: 49 mushy, heart-warming songs to listen to while falling in love]

13. Create a personal, loving pet name for them

Pet names create emotional intimacy with someone. Think about it – calling your significant other “Mike” or “Jane” isn’t as loving as calling them “Sweetie Pie” or “Boo Boo.” So, if you don’t have a pet name for them, then make one up and start using it.

14. Make a candlelight dinner

Making dinner for another person takes a lot of effort. And when you turn down the lights and bring the candles out, then there is nothing more romantic than that.

A lot of emotions go into setting up a dinner like this, and they will notice the love you put into it. [Read: Romantic dinner date ideas – 17 fun dates you both will never forget]

15. Ask them if they think it’s possible to fall in love quickly

If you’re hanging out and talking, try asking them something like, “Do you think it’s possible for someone to fall in love in a month or two?”

And if they say, “Yes, I think it is,” then use this as an opportunity to ask if they love you.

It’s a cute, tricky way to get them to say it first, and one of the best ways to tell someone you love them. [Read: Different ways to say I love you without saying a word]

16. Remember the little details about them

When someone remembers little details that you told them, you know they care. If you weren’t important to them, then they wouldn’t have all of those things stuck in their head.

It can be something simple, like remembering how they like their coffee, their favorite food, or a childhood memory they told you.

17. Tell them that they’ve been on your mind all day

Or that you can’t stop thinking about them. Obviously, if someone spends all day thinking about another person, they probably love them.

When you say this, you can have a conversation that is sweet and deep. Be ready to tell them all the things you were thinking about all day. [Read: 45 signs a guy really loves you even if he hasn’t said it out loud]

18. Shower them with sweet compliments

People love to get compliments, so don’t underestimate the power of doing this. Tell them they are adorable, beautiful, smart, loving, etc.

Not only will it make their day, but it will also make them think of you often and make them smile too. This is a simple, yet effective way to tell someone you love them without making it too obvious. [Read: How to respond to “I love you” without saying it back]

19. Use an arts and crafts project

This will cost you a little bit of time and effort, but the fruits of your labor will be worth it. It seems cheesy and corny, but the best thing about this irony-loving generation is that it will make most people laugh and feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Make a pop-up book, a crossword puzzle, I-<3-U shaped candles, or anything that you can Google or look up on Pinterest with a few days’ notice. Anything made with love is the best way to say “I love you.”

20. Hire a singing telegram

Oh, yes. These rare performers still exist, and it’s their rarity that makes them a unique little treat. The concept seems corny, but the results are impactful. It’s a surprising yet endearing way to express your love.

Just make sure that you send the telegram at home and not at their job. Singing people in costumes may distract the people in the office! [Read: The most romantic songs to play during a dinner date]

21. Plant the words

Seriously. That is exactly what we mean. If you live together and have a garden, plant a row of flowers in the shape of the words “I love you” or “I [heart] You.”

If you live in a place without a garden or away from each other, buy some flowers that you can arrange to get the same results.

22. Research love rituals and perform them

Don’t forget to explain it while you’re doing it though. Every country has some sort of act-of-true-love tradition.

Whether it’s a ten-year courting ritual, a dance under the full moon, or a search for an elusive plant, people perform these rituals to express their love for their partners.

Any of these traditions can help you express your love, while also letting your partner in on the origin and significance of these acts. [Read: Love rituals that can bring you closer together]

23. Give them a care package with trinkets and treats in groups of three

Tell your partner that everything stands for “I Love You,” in case the intention wasn’t obvious. Make sure that you put in all of their favorite things to make the gesture more personal.

It can be three band-aids with cute prints, three bags of their favorite tea, or even three of their favorite sweet treats.

24. Say it with food

Buy a customized treat that says “I love you” or better yet, make one yourself. If you are a novice in the kitchen, you can use simple no-cook recipes. Put frosting on a cake with the words “I love you,” make a pizza with heart-shaped pepperoni pieces or use a heart-shaped stencil when frying an egg.

With food, the possibilities are endless! [Read: Foodie dates – 15 trendy dinner ideas for new couples]

25. Use a public sign

It doesn’t have to be as extravagant as a billboard space. You can set up a cute sign along your partner’s jogging path. You can even just hang a sign on your mailbox.

Go to their favorite coffee shop and ask the baristas if you can put the sign on the counter temporarily before they get their morning cup.

26. Say it with a playlist

Nothing expresses love better than music. All the great composers wrote their biggest hits with their true love in mind. If you are not one of those composers, make a playlist for your partner instead.

Find songs with clear messages instead of vague lyrics. Try to find songs that mean a lot to both of you. Play the songs on your next date, burn them on a CD, or make one for free on YouTube. [Read: 25 super sweet gestures to make your partner swoon]

Taking a different approach

While large gestures are considered sweet, you don’t really need a film production company or a gang of agreeable buddies to make your love known.

There is a kind of love that is silent but true—the kind that doesn’t scream for attention but whispers gently. That is the kind of love that is felt even if it goes unsaid.

We are all familiar with the saying “Actions speak louder than words.” Here are some simple, yet meaningful gestures to let your actions show your special someone that you truly care. [Read: Words of affirmation – How to use it, 56 signs, and tips and examples to say it right]

1. Listen to your partner

Communication is the backbone of a strong relationship and communication is not possible if you don’t listen. It could be something as simple as listening to your partner when they tell you how their day went or listening to something you might find uninteresting or repetitive.

The act of listening is bonding with your partner in and of itself, as it lets you get to know them better. So sit back, don’t interrupt, and listen—even if you’ve heard the story many times over. [Read: 25 small and sweetest romantic gestures you can use every day]

2. Make time for them

Time is the most precious thing you can offer a person you love. The gesture becomes more meaningful if you give what little time you have left for yourself to your significant other.

Giving them the best of your time, even if you have a tight schedule, makes them feel loved and prioritized.

3. Be patient and cut them some slack

There are times when your partner may act or think irrationally. This could mean that they are under stress, or going through something difficult that you are unaware of. If this happens, give them some space, and don’t become confrontational.

If your partner snaps at you for no reason, stay calm, and offer a smile and a reassuring hug. [Read: Love is patient, love is kind]

4. Surprise them every now and then

You don’t need a special occasion to surprise your partner, nor does the surprise need to be expensive or elaborate.

Small surprises such as a hearty breakfast after waking up from an exhausting night, or taking over some chores could make your partner feel loved.

5. Stay in touch

As mentioned above, communication is an essential part of a strong relationship. Staying in touch doesn’t mean just staying updated with what the other is doing, but making a conscious effort to be involved with your significant other and their daily goings-on.

Send a quick text to let your partner know you are thinking of them, or slip a brief note into their pocket.

6. Offer massages and foot rubs

There is nothing more comforting than your partner giving you a soothing massage or foot rub after a long day.

You could use this time to catch up and chat, or, if you’re the daring type, you could escalate the harmless physical therapy into something more erotic. [Read: The perfect romantic massage to turn your lover on]

7. Give more kisses and hugs

Physical forms of affection *such as a surprise kiss or hug* never fail to make your special someone feel loved even without saying, “I love you.” Using these in random, mundane situations will also increase their significance.

Your display of affection could be something as simple as a kiss before going to work, or a welcoming hug when your partner comes home after a long day.

8. Take part in their interests

Couples often have activities that their significant other find boring and uninteresting. Sometimes, they might abandon these activities for your sake.

So why not turn the tables and surprise your partner by taking part in their interests—even if you’re not into them?

Not only do you send the message that you’re willing to do something you hate, but you also get in some good bonding time. Who knows? You might discover that the activity is agreeable, after all. [Read: 16 ways to show your appreciation for someone you love]

9. Cook for your lover

For many working couples, cooking is something done on special occasions or during weekends when you have more time. Cooking your partner’s favorite meal *or something they’ve been craving* would make both them and their stomach feel loved.

There’s a wealth of ideas for preparing special meals: you could make a hearty breakfast, a lunch box with a love note, or a candle-lit dinner ready to eat when your partner returns from work.

You don’t need to be an expert chef, but you could take it one step further by practicing the recipe until you’ve perfected it. [Read: 28 natural aphrodisiacs in your kitchen to make yourself horny AF]

10. Do the chores you both hate doing

In this case, express your love in the form of a sweet surrender. Couples living together often have that one chore that both avoid doing as much as possible. It could be cleaning up the pet’s litter, taking the dog to the vet, taking out the trash, or airing out and cleaning up the basement.

Surprise your partner by taking the initiative and doing said nasty chore—and reap the rewards of their affection. [Read: Little habits that bring couples closer together]

11. Do simple favors

Similar to the previous point, you could express your care by doing stuff that they’ve forgotten or set aside due to their schedule.

Perhaps a broken phone needs to be sent to the tech shop, or a laptop needs rebooting, or bills need filing, or something they’ve forgotten needs to be delivered.

Demonstrate that you’re a reliable partner who can cover for them in times of need.

12. Support your partner

Real support is not only encouraging your partner but making your presence felt regardless of how your relationship might turn out.

Supporting your partner includes giving encouragement when they are in doubt, providing your wisdom by either approving or dissenting opinions, and being there to comfort them in times of failure. [Read: 17 signs of a supportive partner who encourages you and your goals]

13. Go the extra mile during sex

This is pretty self-explanatory. Sex is the most intimate form of bonding in existence, and you can make it more special by taking the lead and learning new bedroom tricks.

You could do something simple, like trying a new kink, buying a toy from the sex shop, engaging in role-play, or having sex in new and exciting places to rekindle your passion for each other. [Read: 30 really sexy ways to spice up your sex life overnight]

14. Sacrifices and unconditional love

Do you believe in unconditional love? It’s pure and extremely loyal. But sometimes, it can hurt too, especially when it’s not reciprocated. But what’s the point of being in love if you’re not going to dive in head first and fill your heart with it?

Do you ever sacrifice your own happiness just to bring a smile to your lover’s face?

Giving up on something you like just to see your lover happy is the purest way of saying “I love you.” When you put your lover’s needs before yours, you’re definitely making it clear just how much you love them. [Read: A true sweet story of a boy and his unconditional love]

15. Arrange dates and make memories

Do you remember your anniversary and your partner’s birthday and other special days? Being thoughtful is one of the sweetest ways to let your sweetheart know how much you love them.

Make sure you remember all of your partner’s special events and try to be a part of them as much as possible.

We like to share our happiness with the ones we love. And by being there for your lover when they need your hug, you can definitely let your sweeter half know you love them.

And don’t stop looking for ways to make memories all the time, by snapping pictures away or videotaping them now and then when both of you are sharing a romantic moment.

Years later, just looking back at the old special times can fill both your hearts with more love and happiness. [Read: 33 awesome date ideas every couple should try]

16. Back up your lover

There’s nothing in the world that feels worse than knowing your lover doesn’t trust you or support you. It’s heartbreaking.

Stand up for your lover when others are around, and always show you support them. Even if you do have differences, voice them when it’s just the both of you. Respect them and love them and don’t pick a fight in public just to prove a point.

Your partner will be filled with love and gratitude when they realize that they can always depend on you to stand up for them, no matter what the cause or where you are. [Read: Types of love you’ll experience in your lifetime]

17. Have a lot of fun

Be romantic and bring out your inner child now and then. If a song’s playing on the television, hold your lover and start dancing, have a pillow fight, chase each other around the house, or call each other silly names.

Just do anything that feels romantic or funny. [Read: Ways to be romantic without being cheesy]

Final thoughts

Always try to keep every expression of love personal and memorable. There may be many other ways to proclaim your love. But other than a few exceptions, most non-face-to-face proclamations are just not perfect.

Using the internet, passing the message through a friend, using an ad on social media, or any other impersonal ways just don’t sound right unless you mix it with a personal effect. Worse, you use voice mail, and your date may end up thinking it’s a prank! [Read: How to make a girl like you without asking her out]

After you’ve proclaimed your love for someone, don’t be too eager for an answer or force them into answering too soon. Sometimes, proclamations of love can take some time to sink in.

If your date responds with an “I love you too,” that’s good for you. But if your date just smiles or looks awkward, don’t think too much about it.

It may break your heart but it’s not the end of the story. Perhaps, your date just needs more time to think about it. [Read: Saying “I love you” and not hearing it back – Why it hurts and what you need to do]

Don’t create an awkward moment at that point. Talk about something else and take the awkwardness out of the conversation. If the relationship has enough love to take the next step forward, you’ll hear a positive reply in a few days.

[Read: Selfless love and 18 ways it sets itself apart from selfish love]

No matter how bold or shy you are when it comes to love, use these simple yet cute tips on how to tell someone you love them, and chances are, it’ll create a memorable moment that may lead to something amazing.

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Preeti Tewari Serai
Preeti Serai
Preeti, the founder of LovePanky, is an eternal optimist and believer in the beauty of love and life. With an exhaustive experience in love, relationships, and ...