What Does It Mean When A Guy Calls You Hot?

We all want to be seen as attractive, especially by the guy we’re into. However, given that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, that can be easier said than done. It’s also true that physical attraction doesn’t mean a relationship will work. In fact, even if he thinks you’re sexy, that doesn’t necessarily mean he wants to date you. So, what exactly does it mean when a guy calls you hot?

What makes someone “hot”?

Cambridge Dictionary defines the word as “sexually attractive, or feeling sexually excited.”  Generally speaking, someone who’s “hot” is physically attractive and worth lusting after. They dress well, put effort into their appearance, and strut around with confidence. Their attractiveness is more urgent and immediate than someone who’s “beautiful” or “cute.” They’re downright sexy.

It’s important to note that being hot isn’t all about physical appearance. In many ways, hotness is a state of mind, especially these days. As podcaster Ariana Nathani told The New York Times, people are using the word “hot” in entirely different ways these days, so it’s not always so clear cut. In other words, you don’t have to be Bella Hadid to fit the bill.

“There’s not one thing that defines what hot is. It’s confidence. It’s the way you dress, the way that you present yourself to other people,” Nathani explained. “That doesn’t mean you have to be the most symmetrically, physically perfect human being. I feel like that isn’t even as desirable anymore. Our definition of attraction and attractiveness has expanded so much.”

What does it mean when a guy calls you hot?

  1. He’s extremely attracted to you. It goes without saying that when a guy calls you hot, he thinks you’re extremely easy on the eyes. Whether he loves your smile, the glimmer in your eyes, your long legs, or anything else, he’s clearly physically into you. Even if he doesn’t know you very well, he definitely likes what he sees.
  2. He wants to have sex with you. Physical attraction automatically leads to sexual attraction. We get turned on by sexy people, so if he feels the need to convey his feelings about your hotness to you, take heed. He’s likely hoping things will head to the bedroom. He may even say this while you’re already in the bedroom as a way to let you know how much you turn him on.
  3. He’s trying to pay you a compliment. Many guys assume that women only care about being appreciated for their physical features. While that’s not true, it’s always nice to hear (unless it’s said in a creepy/predatory way, of course). When a guy calls you hot, it may be as simple as him wanting to pay you a compliment. If you put a lot of effort into looking good, it’s nice to be acknowledged for your efforts.

Or…

  1. He’s interested in you as more than a friend. This is perhaps the most obvious explanation on the list, and it certainly exists in tandem with others. Your guy friends don’t generally call you “hot,” right? It’s normal coming from your girlfriends when you want to gas each other up to feel like the bad b*tches you are. However, when it comes from a (straight) guy, you can bet it’s more than friendly.
  2. He wants to reassure you. If a guy you’re dating calls you hot, it could be that he wants you to feel confident in your burgeoning relationship. This is especially true if he knows you’re feeling insecure or uncertain about his feelings for you. By calling you “hot,” you can rest assured that he’s into you. Hopefully, it’s as more than just someone to sleep with.
  3. He wants to boost your confidence. Along the same lines, a guy might hope that calling you hot will make you feel as good about your appearance as he does. If you just got a new haircut or recently switched up your style, this is doubly possible. He wants you to know he approves of your look and alleviate any insecurities.

Is it a compliment or offensive?

On the surface, when a guy calls you hot, it means he’s trying to compliment you. No man ever says this as a way to insult a woman. Since men are very visual creatures, complimenting you on the way you look is the highest form of praise. He thinks that by letting you know how much you appeal to him visually, you’ll take it in the spirit in which it was meant.

However, it’s hard not to be offended by it. After all, you have so many amazing qualities. You’re smart, driven, accomplished, funny, kind… the list goes on and on. The fact that the best compliment a guy could give you has to do with the way you look doesn’t always sit well. You might wonder if he really gets you or cares about you at all. If he did, couldn’t he look a little deeper?

How you take this is really down to your personal viewpoint. You might hope that he complimented your intellect or spirit more than your body, but perhaps you can appreciate that he meant it in a good way.

What to say when a guy calls you hot

How you respond to this depends on how you feel about him. Here are two paths to take.

If you’re into him

How you proceed here depends on the situation and your own personal desires. If he’s trying to instigate a sexual encounter, do you want to go there? Go for it, if so. If you think he’s trying to test whether or not you’re also into him romantically, you might take it as a sign to go ahead and ask him out. (Women can make the first move too!)

It’s also worth offering him a compliment in return. Though hopefully he wasn’t fishing, it’s always nice to hear something good about yourself in return. Does he make you laugh? Is he handsome? Think about the things you like about him and let him know about it.

If you’re not interested

A simple “thank you” for the compliment should suffice here. Hopefully, the guy isn’t so pushy that he can’t read the room and tell you’re not feeling it. You obviously appreciate the kind words, but you don’t owe him anything for offering them.

If, however, he continues to push his luck, you may have to be more direct. After thanking him, if he continues to pursue you, speak up. Let him know that while you’re flattered, you’re not into him romantically. Again, a mature guy who respects you will accept this and not continue to push the situation.

Bolde has been a source of dating and relationship advice for single women around the world since 2014. We combine scientific data, experiential wisdom, and personal anecdotes to provide help and encouragement to those frustrated by the journey to find love.