Complimenting Men: How to Make Them Feel Great?

Dating 101
05 Nov 2023
10 min read
3 Tips and 60 Examples on How to Compliment a Guy

Men crave positive feedback. They appreciate receiving compliments more than women overall. Unfortunately, many of them just don’t receive many – mainly, because women around them lack proper knowledge on how to compliment a guy (and they are not sure if it’s really needed).

You should compliment men – and that doesn’t just apply to your lover only. Your brother, dad, and best guy friend would also love to receive compliments once in a while. But they don’t head those sweet words, and that’s a shame. Because nothing makes a person feel special like a good compliment.

So, how do you come up with the right words? Here are some insights on how to compliment men, and some great ideas to inspire you to serve up sincere compliments to your special person.

How to Compliment a Guy: The Basics

“I will be generous with my love today. I will sprinkle compliments and uplifting words everywhere I go. I will do this knowing that my words are like seeds and when they fall on fertile soil, a reflection of those seeds will grow into something greater.”

Steve Maraboli, bestselling author and speaker

When it comes to compliments for men, the focus tends to be on their looks and physical strength. It’s great to compliment a guy on these things – most men will be flattered to hear they are handsome and strong. Nevertheless, some guys think the best compliments are on their hard work, intelligence, and helpfulness rather than appearance. That said, you shouldn’t take compliments as “right” or “wrong” – the key is what a given man likes more or less in compliments.

Here are some great tips on how to start practicing the art of giving compliments to men:

  • Be truthful: Guys know when you are heaping on false or insincere praise.
  • Be specific: Don’t exaggerate or be hyperbolic because over-the-top and generic compliments don’t make much of an impact.
  • Think about your intent: Compliments for guys shouldn’t have underhanded motives other than making them feel good about themselves.

That said, stick to heartfelt compliments. It’s not the best idea to compliment a guy in an attempt to manipulate him into changing things about himself. It should come from your heart to feel right.

Best Compliments for Men: You Can Do It!

Now you feel the need to compliment some cool guys around you and find the best compliments ever for your man. But how to do it right? If you’ve never done it before, it may feel a bit awkward to praise someone for the first time. Especially when it seems like you’re the only person who feels this way in your circle.

But that’s okay! The sad truth is that most of us don’t have much experience complimenting guys (even if we pretend to be). Also, giving a meaningful compliment makes you feel a bit vulnerable, which is not the most comfortable feeling ever. That’s why the best way to learn to give compliments to men is to practice and repeat.

But what are the exact phrases to try? We recommend using these examples of unique compliments for guys should help you get started.

Personal Compliments

The first category of the best compliments is focused on who a person is at their core. Most guys praise positive feedback that lets them know they are seen as good people.

Here are some compliments that remind men that they are just fine the way they are:

  • I see what a kind-hearted person you are when you interact with people when we’re together
  • Thanks for being such a good listener when I felt frustrated
  • You’re such an emotionally strong person to remain positive after such a trying year
  • You boost my mood because you always see the glass half full
  • Thanks for always making me feel warm and safe
  • When we go to parties, I can see people just love talking to you
  • It’s like you bring joy the minute you walk into a room
  • You make me feel happy every time we talk on the phone

Have you noticed that each of these compliments is very specific? That’s very important to make them meaningful. Guys are more likely to internalize compliments if they can tie them to a very specific event or behavior.

Rather than saying, “You make me feel safe,” try saying, “You make me feel safe when you let me talk about my feelings without interrupting me.”

Flirty Compliments

“Flirting is probably just as much about falling in love with yourself as it is with someone else. It’s about seeing yourself through someone’s eyes and realizing there is plenty to like about yourself, plenty of reasons someone might hang on your every word.”

Taylor Jenkins Reid, American author

You’re ready to get your flirt on, and you know that flattery is a great way to show your interest in a guy.

Whether you are on the dance floor or just texting, these are some cute compliments that will get him thinking of you before other women:

  • I bet you’d be a fun person to take to the club!
  • Oh my gosh! I can’t stop smiling when you walk into the room
  • You are such a good-looking guy!
  • I love listening to your deep baritone voice
  • Look at everyone staring at you. It’s like you cast a magic spell!
  • I’m a bit jealous of the women who want to dance with you, but they do have great taste!
  • You could definitely show most other guys what a handsome man looks like
  • I’ve been looking for a fun-loving guy like you!

Yes, these compliments are mostly focused on looks. They’re also designed to be ego boosters. Then again, isn’t that what flirting is all about? You want to flatter him and show you’re attracted to him. Combine some great compliments with the right body language, and you will get him interested in you too. Once you do, you can start complimenting him on things that don’t involve his physical attributes.

Related reading: The Best Flirty Conversation Starters

Platonic Sweet Compliments That Aren’t So Flirty

Sometimes, you want to compliment guys without flirting with them. How do you make a man feel honored and appreciated without sending the wrong message? This is an important thing to master. Check out this section of different types of platonic compliments it’s safe to tell your coworkers, guy friends, etc.

Physical Appearance Compliments

How do you compliment a man on his appearance without entering into any danger zones that may seem inappropriate? First and foremost, stay away from remarks about his body. Instead, focus on overall style, professionalism, and non-sexual physical traits.

You can try something like these:

  • Hey! That’s a great-looking messenger bag
  • New haircut? Looks amazing!
  • You always look so professional and put together
  • You’ve got a great sense of style

Related reading: Appreciating a Platonic Soulmate

Compliments on Personality

If you don’t want to stress on their appearance but inner beauty safely, here are a few more compliments for guys that won’t be taken in a romantic or sexual way:

  • You have amazing problem-solving skills
  • I appreciate having a creative mind like yours on our team
  • I’m always in a great mood after spending time with you
  • You really understand tech. Come talk nerdy to me!

Intelligence-Related Compliments

Are you a sapiosexual? Maybe you just appreciate a man who has achieved great success. Here are some compliments for guys who are quite smart:

  • I’m impressed that you’re both smart and self-motivated! That’s the key to success!
  • Have you had a personal coach, or do you just have your life plan together?
  • Thank you for helping me make sense of all the global warming arguments. You really have a talent for explaining things.
  • You really can figure out just about anything, can’t you?
  • I love seeing the art and music you create and share online.
  • You have really insightful thoughts on important issues. I love listening to you talk about them.
  • You really have a way with the written word.
  • Thanks for helping me consider a new point of view in our earlier discussion.
  • No wonder everyone in the department sees you as the go-to person when there’s a tricky problem to solve.
  • You really have this work-life balance thing figured out. That’s so admirable.

There’s nothing wrong with complimenting a guy for his looks, strength, or other characteristics. Still, when you notice such a quality as intelligence or kindness, you can really make a positive impact.

How to compliment a guy in a sexy way

Sexy Compliments

When your feelings have nothing to do with platonic appreciation, it’s time to make a bold move. In this case, you absolutely want your guy to receive the message that you want him. Nothing in between.

These sexy compliments for men will flatter him and turn him on:

  • Something about the sound of your voice makes me weak in the knees
  • You have an unbelievably sensual way about you
  • Your surprise kisses make my day and make me want to do dirty things
  • Is it an appropriate time to say, “I want your body?”. Oops! I guess I just did!
  • One word I think of when I see you is ‘sexy’
  • I have never wanted a guy sexually the way I want you right now
  • You have a handsome face and a body I just can’t resist
  • It’s like you know just how to touch me!
  • You smell fabulous. Hug me a little longer

You might feel a bit self-conscious until you’re used to doling out these compliments. Just remember that guys feel so validated and appreciated when you tell them you find them sexually attractive.

Related reading: Want Some Spice? Add a Sexual Surprise to Your Sex Life

Funny Compliments

You can absolutely use your sense of humor when you compliment a guy. Just be sure that your humor isn’t too hard to get.

You don’t need to try hard to be sarcastic or funny because that will make your compliment seem insincere. Try to match your unique style of humor with his instead.

  • (Handing him a jar) I could probably open this tight jar myself! But I enjoy seeing you flex.
  • I love how your weirdness complements my weirdness.
  • All I want to do is waste the day with you.
  • I would abandon my favorite fandom for you.
  • You are like my favorite outfit – comfortable and flattering.
  • I have a favorite color – It’s whatever you have on.

The best funny compliments for men will be based on your shared experiences. Think about special phrases, funny experiences, and other things that the two of you have in common. That’s going to help you think of the perfect compliment that’s also funny.

Work Ethic Compliments

Guys are beginning to learn that there is more to their value than earning ability. Despite this, most men want to be recognized and appreciated for the work they do.

These are the right compliments for praising his diligent work ethic without making it seem as though you only care about his ability to be a provider:

  • You always put in an effort to make our dates fun for us.
  • Thanks for persevering everything turned out better than I dreamed.
  • I appreciate how much you contribute to making this house a home.
  • I’ve noticed how hard you’ve been working the past few weeks.
  • Thank you so much for being someone I can count on!
  • You really kept at it until the job was done right! Thank you!

These compliments are best when they are specific. Point out what he is doing as a hard worker, how you noticed it, and how that makes you feel.

Compliments for His Relationships

Men take great pride in their relationships with others. Sometimes, the best compliment you can give him is all about somebody else.

Here are some great examples:

  • Your kids are unbelievably adorable and so nice to be around.
  • It’s so cool that you’ve kept the same loyal friends for so many years.
  • I could tell right away that your family really looks up to you.
  • I love watching you and your mom interact – You share a sense of humor!
  • I can see why your friends and coworkers speak so highly of you!

Give it a try! Dressing fancy or building an amazing physique are not for everyone, but virtually all guys value their relationships with friends and family. So, a compliment on this topic is sure to touch his heart!

Why is it good to make a genuine compliment to a man

Why Good Compliments Are So Important

People crave positive feedback and approval, that’s why you should master the skill of how to compliment a guy. When they put effort into something, a compliment lets them know they are doing it right. It’s the simplest but most impactful way to let a guy know you’ve noticed something wonderful about him, and how much you appreciate it.

When you deliver the right compliment at the right moment, you can truly make his day. This simple act and words of kindness will make your love life better.

Related reading: Words of Affirmation – How to Make Them Into Love Language?

Why Is It a Bad Idea to Use a Backhanded Compliment

A backhanded compliment is an insult or criticism disguised as praise. It’s also a tactic that women sometimes deploy rather than speaking directly about something that makes them unhappy. 

If you hide bad feelings behind the sincerest compliment, your words can come across as a fake compliment, unfortunately. Also, your compliment will lose impact if you are using it to try to get something.

Don’t say “I love how you are always finding ways to save money,” when you really mean, “I wish you wouldn’t choose the cheapest option when you buy things for our apartment.”

Not that buttering him up with praise is entirely wrong. It just won’t have the weight of a compliment that’s given with nothing expected in return.

When Platonic Compliments for Men Are Misheard

Sometimes, no matter how careful you are, a guy will take a simple compliment and interpret it as being romantic or sexual. What do you do when that happens?

First, do the reasonable person test. Would a reasonable person hear your words and assume that you had non-platonic intent?

If yes, apologize and clarify your intention. Then, move on.

If not, understand that not every guy is able to receive positive words from women in an appropriate way. Make note of this and keep them at arm’s length.

Whether they truly misunderstood or are simply looking for an excuse to make a pass, save your compliments for men who will receive them the way you intended.

Related reading: Pay Attention! 12 Signs He Is Slowly Falling For You

What to Do If He Takes Your Compliment the Wrong Way

You choose your prompt in our list on how to compliment a guy, take a deep breath, and give him what you think is a positive and uplifting compliment. You wait to see his face brighten, but that doesn’t happen. Instead, you see a flicker of darkness. “What’s that supposed to mean?” he barks. Maybe he mutters a sarcastic “thanks a lot” that is clearly not thankful at all. What do you do now?

Yikes! This is not what you were expecting. You may have some pretty big feelings right now. You were trying to say something nice, but he didn’t take it that way. It’s natural that you might feel sad, embarrassed, or confused. You may even feel defensive or a bit angry. How could he think you were trying to be insulting? Take another breath.

The best way to handle this is with straightforward, honest communication. Tell him you can see you said something that upset him. Apologize for your words regardless of intent. Assure him that you didn’t mean anything insulting or upsetting. Then ask him what’s up. You may learn that he just isn’t used to receiving compliments. Plenty of men aren’t. So, his first instinct is to assume there’s some underlying intent that just isn’t there.

What to Do If You Don’t Know What to Say

Some people struggle to receive compliments. Others with giving them. You can rehearse the words in your head, but what if they just sound awkward or phony? What if he thinks you’re weird or trying way too hard? How is it that some people know exactly what to say, but your words always come out weird?

Relax! Yes, that’s easier said than done. Still, you are probably underestimating your ability to come up with a sweet, flattering compliment. Remember, that your words don’t need to be deep or poetic. Be yourself. Say what you mean and be direct. Sometimes, flowery language just confuses things anyway.

Now You Know to Compliment a Guy, So Go Make Him Feel Special!

“She liked him. She liked the feeling of liking him. She felt light and smiley and too full of excitement to think of anything else. ”

Freya North, British writer

Now you know how to compliment a guy. It’s time to put those skills to work! Whether you deliver a one-word compliment or a soliloquy of praise citing every way in which he is the best blessing you have ever experienced, there’s nothing like a genuine compliment to make a man feel absolutely amazing. You’ll truly make his day.

Relationships Author
Geoffrey Williams
After taking a required Intro to Psychology course as an undergrad, I have never looked back. Since my doctoral program, I have specialized in adult relationship therapy. Through my studies and clinicals, I wrote several articles for professional journals and currently in the midst of writing a book.
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