Beyond simply saying ‘I love you,’ there are loads of great ways to express your love for your boyfriend.
Don’t worry, they’re not all grand gestures or wildly expensive activities. Sometimes, the best way to show someone we care about them is just to be there for the small things and big things alike.
These are our top 20 ways you can show your boyfriend you love him without saying those three little words.
1. Surprise him.
Nothing says ‘I love you’ like a surprise!
Plan something random and wacky to excite your boyfriend and keep things fresh. It could be something silly, something free, or something more extravagant.
Whatever it is, it’ll show him that you care about him and want to do something to make him feel good. What’s a better way to say ‘I love you’ than that?
2. Cook him dinner.
Coming home to a delicious cooked meal, or sitting in the kitchen while your partner cooks dinner, is always lovely.
It’s partly because it makes mealtimes less of a chore and makes an everyday task feel more exciting.
And it’s partly because it just shows you care and want to look after your boyfriend. Either way, it’s a good way to show them you love them.
3. Buy him something special.
We’re not suggesting a huge present or five-star holiday, but a small gift can go a long way to showing him you love him. Silly presents are always fun too!
Go for something you know he’ll love – maybe he’s talked about it in the past or always gets excited when a certain advert comes on.
Have a look at companies he follows on Instagram and do a bit of research to surprise him with something he might not think you know about.
4. Plan a date night.
This is a great idea because you both get to benefit! Either book a romantic restaurant and get dressed up, or go all-out at home.
If you’re cooking at home, dim the lights, get the candles out, and chill some wine or fizz. You can both dress up – surprise him with a message telling him to arrive in a tux or something fun!
He’ll be so happy that you’ve gone to the effort to do something so lovely for him, and it’ll give you both some good quality time to enjoy together.
5. Get cozy together.
Sometimes, our loved ones just need to be held and snuggled up with us to be reminded how much we love them.
Physical touch and affection play a huge role in a lot of our feelings around love – giving someone your time and making an effort to get cozy with them might sound simple, but it’s effective.
Stick on a movie, get cozy under a blanket, hold hands, and don’t be scared to snuggle up and stroke his hair.
6. Bake his favorite snack.
Who doesn’t love coming home to the smell of freshly-baked brownies? And the taste, to be fair…
Bake something special for him one day and he’ll be so happy! Baking for someone shows that you’ve gone to a lot of effort to do something lovely for them that will cheer them up.
It’s a very tasty way of saying ‘I love you.’
7. Organize a movie night.
Set up a little den in your bedroom or living room and plan out some good movies to watch. Get some popcorn, dim the lights, and get all the duvets ready!
If you want to make it even cuter, make a little cinema entry ticket and surprise your boyfriend with it – it’ll add a bit of mystery and surprise to it all and makes for a really sweet DIY date.
8. Care about things he cares about.
Now, we’re not saying you need to become a life-long supporter of his favorite sports team, or that you need to join in with every workout session, but it’s great to show an interest in what he’s interested in.
That means asking how his hobbies are going, offering to go with him to events sometimes, and showing that you love his passion and interests, even though they might not match up with your own.
Loving someone means being part of their lives – even the bits that you might not choose yourself. It’ll make him feel loved and valued, as well as seen.
9. Spend the day doing what he wants.
Plan a day of doing what your boyfriend wants. Choose a date together and let him pick out things he feels like doing.
This is a sweet activity day to look forward to, and will make him feel really special. Making a commitment to him and things he enjoys is a good way of showing him how much you care.
10. Take him breakfast in bed.
We all love being brought breakfast in bed! Take him a cup of coffee or tea, stick on some music and then take up a tray full of tasty breakfast food.
It doesn’t need to be something you spend hours cooking; it can be something easy like fruit and pastries, or porridge, even.
It’s the thought that counts, and that fact that you want to spoil him and make him feel special.
We all need a bit of self-care at times, and you bringing him breakfast is a good way to make him feel cared for and will encourage him to look after himself more too.
11. Have a pamper day.
It’s not just women who love spa treatments! Plan a pamper day at home – you can buy some facemasks, or make your own.
Get some cucumber slices ready for fun, make a healthy smoothie, run a bubble bath and just enjoy relaxing together.
In life, we’re often rushing around so much that we don’t take enough time to just unwind and enjoy each other’s company.
A lot of the time in relationships, especially in the early days, we feel like we need to be doing something or going out to new places. Instead, spend some time doing nothing – together.
12. Book a night out for him and his friends.
Reserve a table at his favorite restaurant for him and a few of his close friends. This is a cute way to show him how much you care and shows that you respect how much fun he has without you sometimes!
Some of us can get a bit needy with our partners, and think that showing someone we love them means being with them at all times and showering them with affection.
Healthy love is respecting boundaries and the need for some space at times, so show him that you love and trust him by encouraging him to spend quality time with other people.
13. Be there for him.
Just being there for your boyfriend is a lovely way to show him how much you care.
Be there to listen to him rant about his day at work, pay attention when he tells you about the drama in his friendship group, or his brother’s new girlfriend.
Be there on the good days and the bad days, and show him that you’re supportive and you’ve got his back.
A well-timed hug, an agreement over how horrible someone is, or an ‘I’m so proud of you’ will go a long way, trust us.
14. Compromise more often.
Sometimes, the best way to show how much we care about someone is by really taking their opinion on board and compromising.
Now, we’re not suggesting that you forsake all of your values and totally change how you feel and what you want in life! Instead, be more open to the idea of compromise and communicate better around issues you don’t see eye to eye on.
This will show that you really value how he feels and want to know that you are very inclusive of his opinions when you make decisions.
15. Support his dreams.
Be his cheerleader! He might want to start his own business, beat a fitness PB, or work on some personal goals.
Whatever it is, support his dream as much as you can. Take the time to listen to his plans and help him through any stumbling blocks that come up.
Be his biggest hype-man and share his social media stories about his latest venture, leave him good reviews and spread the word if it helps him achieve his goals.
This will make him feel respected and loved, and like he can do anything in the world.
16. Make an effort with his family and friends.
If he’s got an elderly family member who might appreciate some shopping being dropped off, go out of your way to do it.
Take an interest in what his friends talk about and contribute to the conversation. Take his younger cousin out for lunch or his sister on a shopping trip.
These are all lovely ways to show him that you love him and want to merge your lives even more.
It’ll mean so much to him to know that his other loved ones get on so well with you, and it shows him you really see yourselves together forever. What better way to feel?!
17. Give him his space.
Sometimes, the best way to show someone we love them is to let them be! We all need alone time sometimes, no matter how much we love our partners.
A lot of us think that showing love means showering our partner with affection and being around them at all times. In fact, giving them some space and respecting their need for downtime on their own is a really key way of showing someone you love them.
It gives them time to refresh and reset, and it also means you’ll really value the time that you do have together.
Remember that them wanting some time to themselves is very different to them wanting time away from you! It’s not personal, it’s human, it’s normal, and it’s healthy.
18. Respect his decisions.
Having different opinions to your partner is normal, even healthy. One of the best ways we can show someone that we care about them is by showing them respect.
That doesn’t mean that we need to start agreeing with everything they say, but it does mean we can show them we value their thoughts and opinions more.
Next time you have a discussion (or disagreement!), let your boyfriend know that you respect his decisions rather than flying off the handle or causing a heated argument. It’ll go a long way for your communication as a couple too.
19. Leave him cute notes.
Why not write down a few of your favorite things about your boyfriend and leave them around the house?
Imagine waking up to a post-it in the bathroom that says ‘I love your smile,’ or finding a note in your wardrobe reminding you how great you are.
20. Send him sweet texts.
Let him know you’re thinking of him throughout the day. This doesn’t need to be anything major (or needy!), but you can drop him a message during the day to let him know he’s on your mind.
Send him a photo of something funny you think he’d laugh at, or of something he’s been talking about for a while.
We all love it when people think of us and make us feel valued and cared about.
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