(2023) (1)

written by
George Julian

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Saying “I love you” in Portuguese is a special thing to me – not least because it's the language in which I said my wedding vows.

If you plan on travelling to a Portuguese-speaking country, perhaps you too will find love on the road. Or maybe you’ve already found a Portuguese speaking lover! In either case, it’s good to make sure you know all the words and expressions below, so you're never unsure how to say “I love you” in Portuguese.

“Love” in Portuguese

“Love” in Portuguese is amor, a masculine noun. It's a cousin of English words like “amorous”.

To the object of your affection, you could say: você é o amor da minha vida – “you are the love of my life.”

You might send messages com amor (with love), or tell someone they're your amor verdadeiro – “true love”. “To make love” is fazer amor.

So maybe tomorrow morning you can greet your Portuguese-speaking lover with bom dia, meu amor – “Good morning, my love” in Portuguese.

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“To love” in Portuguese

We've covered the noun “love”. The verb “to love” in Portuguese is amar, and it conjugates like this:

  • eu amo – “I love”
  • tu amas – “you love” (informal in Portugal, not used at all in Brazil)
  • você ama – “you love” (formal in Portugal, used in all situations in Brazil)
  • ele/ela ama – “he/she loves”
  • nós amamos – “we love”
  • vocês amam – “you (plural) love”
  • eles/elas amam – “they love”

For the sake of completeness, it's also worth knowing vós amais, an antiquated way of saying “you (pl.) love”. You'll never hear it in speech anymore, but it might turn up in old-timey writing.

With amar under our belts, we can learn this essential phrase:

“I love you” in Portuguese

To say “I love you” in Brazilian Portuguese, say eu te amo. Or better yet, drop the eu, as it's optional: te amo.

Portuguese people tend to use a different word order to Brazilians, especially when it comes to pronouns. So, while te amo is still acceptable in Portugal, amo-te can be used as well. Brazilians would almost never use amo-te, except perhaps in very formal writing.)

To say “I love you too” in Portuguese, i.e. in response to a te amo or amo-te, you can say te amo/amo-te também, or simply eu também.

Or maybe you want to make things sound more intense. Te amo muito means “I love you a lot”.

Te amo muitíssimo is even more emphatic. It's a great way to say something like “I love you so much” in Portuguese.

To say “I'm in love with you” in Portuguese, say estou apaixonado por você (change apaixonado to apaixonada if you're female).

As you may know, Portugese has two words for “to be”: ser and estar. It’s a complicated topic, but the basic idea is that ser is used for permanent, non-changing states while estar is used for temporary conditions. So actually, if you’ve been madly in love with someone for a long time, it makes more sense to say sou apaixonado/apaixonada por você instead of estou.

“Beautiful” in Portuguese

There are a few ways in Portuguese to tell someone that they're beautiful.

First off, you could describe someone as bonito (for men) or bonita (for women). This is roughly equivalent to calling someone “pretty” in English.

A stronger word is lindo or linda, which means “beautiful”. The noun lindeza means “beauty”.

Then there's gostoso/gostosa, which literally means “tasty”, but is a common gíria (slang word) in Brazil for saying that someone is… well, tasty. Tell someone they’re gostoso if you think they’re hot.

The English word “sexy” is also used in Portuguese, with the exact same meaning.

Finally, there's tesudo or tesuda. This word doesn't have a direct translation, but if someone is tesudo then it means they make you feel tesão; that is, sexual desire.

Note that tesudo/a is a rather suggestive word. If you tell a girl you just met that you find her tesuda, don't be surprised if she slaps you in the face!

“Cute” in Portuguese

Another word worth knowing is fofo/fofa, which means “cute”. Use it to describe people, animals, children, or anything that makes you go “awwwwwww”.

“I miss you” in Portuguese

There's a famous word in Portuguese that has no direct English translation. Long-time Fi3M readers may know it, as it's been mentioned a few times before.

That word is saudade, plural saudades. If you have a saudade for something, it means you feel a deep longing or yearning for it. You miss it!

So to tell someone you miss them in Portuguese, say eu estou com saudades de você – “I have (lit: am with) saudades for you”!

“Heart” in Portuguese

“Heart” in Portuguese is coração. Make sure to pronounce the “-ão” ending correctly, with a nasal sound; this is often a difficult one for learners of Portuguese.

Like in English, and in most languages, Portuguese has a lot of heart-related expressions about relationships and love. A warm, generous person is said to have a grande coração – big heart – or even a coração de ouro – heart of gold. If you want to win someone's affections, you can try to ganhar o coração – win their heart. Or if your attempts to ganhar o coração are unsuccessful, you may be left with a coração partido – a broken heart.

If something is very important to you, you can say that you feel it do fundo do meu coração; “from the bottom of my heart”.

So next time you see your Portuguese-speaking love interest, let your true feelings be known: te amo do fundo do meu coração – “I love you from the bottom of my heart.”

“Sweetheart” in Portuguese

Portuguese has many terms of endearment – cute, affectionate names by which you might address a loved one, like “sweetheart” or “darling” in English.

One common term of endearment is querido (said to a man) or querida (said to a woman.) While it literally means something like “desired”, think of as like the English word “sweetheart”; it's the kind of thing a husband might say to his wife (or visa versa.)

Another nice term of endearment is bem. Or to keep things simple, address your loved one as amor. I already told you what that one means!

“Boyfriend/girlfriend” in Portuguese

Your “boyfriend” or “girlfriend” in Portuguese is your namorado or namorada. To remember it, think of the English word “enamoured”.

In the early stages of your relationship, you might say that you're saindo com the other person; “going out with them”. Once things get more serious, and they “officially” become your namorado or namorada, you say that you're namorando com them. (Com means “with”.)

“Fiancé/fiancée” in Portuguese

Are you ready to pop the question to your namorada? If so, get down on one knee and say você quer casar comigo? – “will you marry me?”. Hopefully he or she will say yes, in which case you're no longer namorados (boyfriend/girlfriend) but noivos (fiancés/engaged.)

If you speak Spanish, beware of the false friend here. In Spanish your novio or novia is your boyfriend or girlfriend, but in Portuguese the cognates noivo and noiva (note the slightly different spelling and pronunciation) mean “fiancé” and “fiancée” respectively. (Your “fiancé/fiancée” in Spanish is your prometido/prometida.) Make sure you don't mix these words up!

On the day of the casamento (wedding), the words noiva and noivo are still used to refer to the bride and the groom. Portuguese doesn't have separate words for “bride” and “groom” like English does; you’re still just “fiancés”.

“Husband/wife” in Portuguese

So now that you're casado (married), what should you call each other? Easy: “husband” in Portuguese is marido and “wife” is esposa. No amigos falsos this time: both words are exactly the same as in Spanish.

Enjoy having an aliança (wedding ring) on your finger. Parabens (congratulations) on your marriage!

“Love” in Portuguese is a Beautiful Thing

As the Beatles sang, tudo o que você precisa é de amor. Well, actually they sang “all you need is love”, but I like how it sounds in Portuguese. Hopefully I've given you all the words you need to catch and keep that special someone. Learning another language is, after all, a great way to broaden your potential dating pool. 😉 (2)

George Julian

Content Writer, Fluent in 3 Months

George is a polyglot, linguistics nerd and travel enthusiast from the U.K. He speaks four languages and has dabbled in another five, and has been to more than forty countries. He currently lives in London.

Speaks: English, French, Spanish, German, Vietnamese, Portuguese

View all posts by George Julian


What do Brazilians call their girlfriend? ›

Apart from “love”—the most commonly used, other pet names for a lover could be: amoreco (“beloved”), môre (“special”), fofo (“fluff”), fofinho (“cuddles”), minha vida (“my life”), meu bebê (“baby”), paixão (“passion”), coração (“heart”), xuxuzinho (“sweet pumpkin”), flor de maracujá (“passion flower”)…

How do you express love in Brazilian Portuguese? ›

In European Portuguese, you would say “amo-te” and in Brazilian Portuguese, you would say “te amo”.

How do you respond to Obrigado in Portuguese? ›

“You're Welcome” in Portuguese: De nada

So when someone says obrigado or valeu to you, gives you their graças, or tells you that they want to agradecer you, what should your reply be? The most common way to say “you're welcome” is de nada; literally “of nothing”. You can also say por nada.

How do you say thank you very much in Brazilian Portuguese? ›

If you want to say thank you *very much*, all you need to do is to add the word muito before obrigado/obrigada: Muito obrigado! Muito obrigada!

What does a kiss mean in Brazil? ›

The Kiss as a Greeting

Not only do Brazilians kiss as a way of saying, “hello,” they do it in a very specific way. The number of kisses and where they are placed can change depending on where you are in the country.

What does BAE mean in Brazil? ›

1. " baby", slang. querido {m} bae (also: darling, deary, ducky, honey, hubby, sweetie, dear)

What do you say to your boyfriend in Brazil? ›

Querido, docinho and amorzinho

Querido(a) roughly translates to sweetheart or dear. Docinho translates to 'little sweet' which would have the meaning of 'cutie'. Amorzinho translates to 'little love' but the 'little' part is a sign of affection rather than intensity of the love.

Do you say obrigado if you're a girl? ›

So, if you're a male, you say obrigado, and if you're a female, you say obrigada – regardless of who you're talking to.

What does Bom dia mean in Brazil? ›

“Bom dia” literally means “good day," but you'd only use it to say “good morning” in Portuguese.

How do you say no in Brazil? ›

In the answer of yes and no questions in Brazilian Portuguese is "no", Brazilians do use the word não, but not normally on its own because it would sound a bit too abrupt.

How do you respond to Bom dia in Portuguese? ›

Tenha um bom dia — Have a good day

In response, you can either say Tenha um bom dia também (Have a good day too) or, depending on whom you're addressing, a simple para você também (literally: to you too) will suffice.

What is a NY kiss? ›

The idea behind exchanging a kiss at midnight on New Year's Eve is rooted in a simple superstition: The way you ring in the new year will determine how the rest of your year will go.

What does BJ mean Brazil? ›

bj or bjo (beijo) – Kiss.

What is a Bali kiss? ›

Bali Kissing Festival or in local language known as the Omed-omedan is a tradition or ritual of hugging and kissing among the youth which is held once a year, after Nyepi to welcome the Saka new year. The name Omed-omedan itself comes from the Balinese language which means “to pull”.

Is hugging normal in Brazil? ›

It is common for friends to greet each other with a warm hug. Commonly, women lightly kiss the person she is greeting on each cheek. If a female wishes to shake hands with a male, it is expected that she will extend her hand first.

Do Brazilians like to be touched? ›

Physical Contact: Brazilians tend to be quite tactile people. The touching of arms and backs is a common and widely accepted practice. Generally, public displays of affection such as holding hands and kissing are acceptable. Personal Space: During a conversation, Brazilians tend to stand very close to one another.

How to tell a Brazilian girl shes beautiful? ›

Here are some phrases you can remember:
  1. Você é linda/lindo. (“You are beautiful/handsome.”)
  2. Que bonita(o) está hoje. (“You look good today.”)
  3. Você tem um sorriso lindo. (“You have a beautiful smile.”)
  4. Você é muito charmoso(a). (“You're very charming.”)
  5. Você é estiloso(a). (“You're stylish.”)
  6. Que gatinho(a)!
May 28, 2020

What does bae mean girlfriend? ›

BAE is an abbreviation for baby or babe. BAE refers to a person's significant other. It can be used as a term or endearment or as an adjective.

Does bae mean wife? ›

noun. an affectionate term used to address or refer to one's girlfriend, boyfriend, spouse, etc.: I love you, bae.

Why do girls say bae? ›

Bae (/beɪ/ BAY) is a slang term of endearment primarily used among youth in communities. It came into widespread use around 2013 and 2014 through social media and hip-hop and R&B lyrics. The term originated as an abbreviation of the word baby or babe.

How do you say hello to a girl in Brazil? ›

If you'd like to say “hello” in Brazilian Portuguese, you would generally use “Olá”. You can also use “Oí“—which is often considered more informal.

What does darling mean in Brazil? ›


How do you show respect in Brazil? ›

Small gifts such as a chocolate bar are often given as a symbolic gesture of appreciation towards someone who does a favour. If invited into a Brazilian home, bringing flowers or a small gift for the hostess is a good gesture of appreciation. A gift for the hostess' children will also be greatly appreciated.

How do you say WTF in Brazilian Portuguese? ›

WTF [abbreviation]

mas que porra {interj.}

How do Brazilians hug? ›

Between good friends, men shake hands and also do kind of a half or full hug and pat each other on the back or shoulder. Women will hug each other. A man and a woman will do the kiss on each cheek but it is more personal and may include a hug on the first cheek kiss.

How do you flirt in language? ›

Phrases You Can Use to Flirt
  1. “Are you on_____?” or “Do you use_____? ...
  2. “Can I get your digits/number?” ...
  3. “I love your ____” ...
  4. “Has anyone ever told you ____?” ...
  5. “Are you seeing anyone lately?” ...
  6. “I'm totally into _____“ ...
  7. “We are meant for each other” or “we are meant to be.” ...
  8. “I'm falling for you“
Apr 28, 2022

What is Portuguese for pretty girl? ›

pretty girl {adjective}

lindinha {adj. f} [fam.]

How do you say thank you to a guy in Brazil? ›

If you'd like to say “thank you” in Portuguese, you would say “obrigado” when addressing a man or “obrigada” when addressing a woman.

How is to date a Portuguese woman? ›

Commitment and dedication are two qualities that every Portuguese woman possesses. She is taught from a young age to be true to her traditions, and that means that she will always take every relationship seriously. Don't expect your date to commit to more after one or two dates.

How do you say thank you in Portuguese by a man? ›

If you are a man, say muito obrigado. If you are a woman, say muito obrigada. You can add the words por or pelo/pela if you want to specify the reason for your gratitude.

What does Bobo mean in Brazil? ›

silly , daft. masculine noun, feminine noun. fool. masculine noun.

Why do Brazilians say Opa? ›

Opa. This word is an informal way of saying “hi,” but it's closer to “hey!” The reason is that the word came from an expression of surprise. You'd use it when you dropped a dish or woke up late to work.

What does Boi mean in Brazil? ›

masculine noun. office boy. Copyright © 2014 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.

How do you say mad in Brazil? ›

  1. louco.
  2. foolish) tolo.
  3. ( angry) furioso ⧫ brabo.
  4. ( keen)

Do Brazilians say OK? ›

How do you say "ok" in Brazilian Portuguese? Is it still "ok" or is there another way to say it? We usually say OK, but you can use "Tudo bem" to be more formal, "Tá", "Beleza", "Certo" to be more informal.

How do Portuguese greet each other? ›

Common verbal greetings include 'olá' ('hello'), 'bom dia' ('good day'), 'boa tarde' ('good afternoon') and 'boa noite' ('good evening' or 'good night').

What do Portuguese people say when someone sneezes? ›

List of responses in other languages
LanguageUsual responses and notesReply meaning in English
Portuguese / GalicianSaúde or Deus te crie or Deus te guarde or Santinho!"Thank you" or "Amen"
Punjabiਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ (Waheguru) or ਤੇਰਾ ਭਲਾ ਹੋਵੇ!"Thank you"
90 more rows

What do Portuguese say after sneezing? ›

When you sneeze once, usually in Portugal we say “Santinho/a”. When you sneeze a second time, we say “Deus te ajude”. If you sneeze the third time (this isn't so common), then it's“Deus, te faça feliz”.

Is Brazilian Portuguese a pretty language? ›

Portuguese is a rich and beautiful language. Many people describe Brazilian Portuguese as having a melodic lilt. There's much to read, listen to, watch and experience through the ears of a Portuguese speaker.

What is the personality of a Brazilian woman? ›

Brazilian women represent a great mixture of confident, spirited women full of energy and warm-hearted romantics. They enjoy their life and love exuberant parties and passionate dances. Samba is in their blood and they know exactly how to move their bodies to the Latin American rhythms.

How do you call a cute Brazilian girl? ›

That's because one of the most common ways to compliment someone's beauty is to call them a gato or gata. This literally means “cat” but in slang terms means “hot” or “sexy.”

How do you say pretty girl in Brazil? ›

"pretty girl" in Portuguese
  1. volume_up. gatinha.
  2. lindinha.

What is the Brazil word of I Love You? ›

To say “I love you” in Brazilian Portuguese, say eu te amo. Or better yet, drop the eu, as it's optional: te amo.

What do Brazilians call their daughters? ›

To refer to adult sons and daughters, Brazilian parents use: filho for son. filha for daughter. filhas for daughters (plural)

What body type is a Brazilian girl? ›

Broadly, Brazilian woman has a rectangular body shape, with emphasis on the Northeast with 70.3% (data not shown in table).

Why do Brazilians say oi? ›

'Oi' literally just means 'hi' in Portuguese, and has no similarity to the dismissive and rude 'oi' in English. It is more informal than 'ola' that means 'hello' but it's used in almost every situations from in shops and on public transport, to greeting friends or business acquaintances.

What does bum bum mean in Brazil? ›

In Brazilian slang, bumbum is a term used for a woman's buttocks, which are considered an important element of physical beauty in Brazilian culture.

Does bae mean boyfriend? ›

While originating in Black slang, bae has become widespread in youth culture, on social media, and in online popular publications as an affectionate way to refer to a significant other, especially a boyfriend, girlfriend, spouse, or other romantic partner.

What is bae in texting? ›

"Bae," Urban Dictionary says, is an acronym that stands for "before anyone else," or a shortened version of baby or babe, another word for sweetie, and, mostly unrelated, poop in Danish. In addition, "bae" has appeared in rap songs and countless web memes since the mid-2000's.

What does a bae stand for? ›

The letters of bae stand for 'Before Anyone Else'. When you call someone bae, you're saying that person is your number one priority and holds a special place in your heart.

How do you say hi guys in Brazil? ›

“Oi!” is a very friendly and informal way to say “hi!” It is more commonly used in Brazil than in Portugal and used to greet friends and close colleagues. Stick to “olá,” however with people you don't really know.


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