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How to Say “I Love You,” in Portuguese

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Everyone knows that love is the universal language… But still, learning the mother tongue of your beloved or potential love interest can do no harm when it comes to flirting or enhancing your communication. 

Trust us: Saying “I love you,” in Portuguese to a native speaker is the surest way to capture that person’s heart! After all, wouldn’t you like to see an attractive foreigner sweat a little bit to get your attention in your mother tongue? 

But while there’s beauty in this simplicity, there are many steps and eventualities one must get through before reaching the “I love you” stage. 

This collection of Portuguese love phrases will serve as a reference for all the basics you need to know for every step of a relationship. You’ll pick up several expressions you can use to make small talk, confess your love in Portuguese, and even propose marriage!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Portuguese Table of Contents
  1. Confess Your Affection: Pick-up Lines
  2. Fall in Deeper: “No, I Love You More…”
  3. Take it One Step Further: “Will You Marry Me?” and More
  4. Endearment Terms
  5. Must-know Love Quotes
  6. Don’t say adeus, say até logo!

1. Confess Your Affection: Pick-up Lines

The Flames of a Fire

Better to get your words straight when the fire of love is burning!

The first step regarding how to express love in Portuguese is to begin a conversation with that special someone who has caught your eye. This means saying hello, introducing yourself, and getting your flirt on

Perhaps it’s a good idea to practice these romantic Portuguese phrases in front of the mirror before going out “hunting.” Take a deep breath, don’t stutter, and prepare to get in touch with a new face wherever you are: in a club, at the movies, at the beach, in the park…

A- Meeting and flirting

One initial insight you should keep in mind about Portuguese love phrases—and communication in general—is that the pronoun vós (formal “you”) is hardly ever used for talking to strangers. Instead, people use tu or você.

  • Quer dançar? / Dança comigo! – “Do you want to dance?” / “Dance with me!”

    When using você (“you”), the imperative form of dançar (“to dance”) is dance. But in informal contexts, it’s very common to use dança as an imperative.
  • Você é solteiro/solteira? – “Are you single?”

    Solteiro is the masculine form of “single,” whereas solteira is the feminine form.
  • Seu sorriso é lindo. “Your smile is beautiful.”
  • Quer ir para outro lugar? – “Shall we go somewhere else?”
  • A gente pode se encontrar de novo? – “Can we meet again?”
  • Eu te levo para casa. – “I will drive you home.”
  • Gosto de você. – “I like you.”

B- Going out

The Moon Shining Brightly in a Star-filled Sky Over the Mountains

Quiet nights of quiet stars, quiet chords from my guitar floating on the silence that surrounds us… Frank Sinatra, anyone?

So, you’ve met someone interesting and would definitely like to see them again! 

There are some key phrases you’ll need to know in order to ask him or her out on a date—and to have a great time as you talk and get to know each other better. It’s time to gather your courage, plan your interesting night out, and let them know you’re interested in another meeting. 

  • Você gostaria de sair para jantar comigo? – “Would you like to go out for dinner with me?”
  • Você gostaria de sair comigo? – “Would you like to hang out with me?”
  • A que horas a gente se encontra amanhã? – “What time shall we meet tomorrow?”

If you’re inviting the person, you might prefer to establish the time of the meeting as part of the suggestion. In this case, you could give a more subtle suggestion by saying: 

  • Você está livre às ___ horas? – “Are you free at ___ o’clock?”

And of course, you’ll want to offer your date a genuine compliment and let them know you enjoyed your time together: 

  • Você está bonito/bonita. – “You look handsome/beautiful.”
  • Adorei te conhecer! – “I loved meeting you!”

2. Fall in Deeper: “No, I Love You More…”

Colored Dyes Dissolving in Water

The start of a romantic relationship feels like blending two people into one.

Now’s the time to dim the lights, make some chamomile tea, burn some incense, and sit beside your loved one to pamper him or her. The flowers of romance have bloomed and now it’s time to smell their perfume.

As you walk along the magical yellow brick road of love, you’re going to experience some of the best moments of your life. With each step, you’ll get to know your partner in greater depth and continuously look for new ways to make them happy. 

To give you a headstart, here are some sweet words of love in Portuguese that are sure to melt their heart. Your friends might not be able to keep a straight face as you exchange these expressions with your lover, but we think it’s worth it. 

Ready? 

  • Eu te amo. – “I love you.”
  • Não, eu te amo mais. “No, I love you more.”
  • Eu te amo tanto… – “I love you so much…”
  • Acho que estou apaixonado (a) por você. – “I think I am in love with you.”
  • Sonhei com você esta noite. – “I dreamed of you last night.”
  • Quero estar com você para sempre. – “I want to be with you forever.”
  • Você me faz querer ser uma pessoa melhor. – “You make me want to be a better person.”
  • Você é tudo para mim. “You are everything to me.”

3. Take it One Step Further: “Will You Marry Me?” and More

An Old Couple Walking Together in a Park

Old friends, sat on their park bench like bookends…

Wow, you really made it! It has been quite a ride from your first “I love you” in Portuguese to where you are now. Marriage is the turning of a new page in life, and with this fresh chapter comes the forming of comprehensive and ambitious plans for the future. 

Soon enough, memorizing Portuguese love phrases will be your smallest concern—hopefully!

  • Você quer casar comigo? – “Will you marry me?”
  • Você me daria a honra de ser minha esposa/meu marido? – “Will you do me the honor of becoming my wife/husband?”
  • Quero que você conheça os meus pais. “I want you to meet my parents.”
  • Eu nunca morei junto com ninguém. – “I have never moved in with somebody.”
  • Estou grávida. – “I am pregnant.”
  • Ele vai ter o nome do pai. – “He is going to have his father’s name.”
  • Ela vai ter o nome da mãe. – “She is going to have her mother’s name.”

4. Endearment Terms

A Couple Lying Together in the Grass During Autumn

If you call someone chuchu, there is no coming back: you are already madly in love.

Another way to express your love in the Portuguese language? Calling your dearest one by a cute pet name! The following endearment terms are even more poignant when spoken in a childlike voice. Ah! It is good to be in love… 

  • Meu amor – “My love”
  • Amorzinho – Literally: “My little love”

    This is an example of a diminutive form, which typically denotes affection and/or cuteness. But keep in mind that context is important; if used in an ironic manner, it shows disdain.
  • Docinho – “Sweetie” [ Literally: “Little candy” ]
  • (Minha) vida – Literally: “(My) life”

    This one is a social media favorite, especially among couples who insist on sharing the same profile and publishing photos subtitled with inspiring love confessions.
  • Meu bem / Querida(o) – “(My) dear”

    You can try some alternative versions for querido (male) or querida (female), such as queridinha (“little darling”) or queridíssima (“dearest”).
  • Meu chuchu – Approximately: “honey boo”

    This one is awkward. A chuchu is a chayote, which is an edible green plant. It has a soft texture, is very watery, and has an unremarkable taste, yet it’s very popular and generally cheap. The French call their darlings their chouchous. This unintentionally comical adaptation of the idiom to Portuguese resulted in meu chuchu, which is one of the corniest ways to say “I love you,” in Portuguese to someone. To make it extra corny, use the diminutive form meu chuchuzinho.
  • Bebê – “Baby”
  • Coração – “Sweetheart”

5. Must-know Love Quotes

Hilda Hilst and her crew are here to tell you some things about love.

Love is one of those ubiquitous themes that inspire both the most tinny and the most brilliant statements and artistic expressions. As such, there are quotes about love in Portuguese that fall on both ends of the spectrum—but for your reading pleasure, we’ve included only the most poetic remarks on the universal feeling we call “love.”

No phony stuff in here, just some good material about love in Portuguese from modern authors. Vinicius de Moraes (1913 – 1980), Carlos Drummond de Andrade (1902 – 1987), Hilda Hilst (1930 – 2004), and Ferreira Gullar (1930 – 2016) are among the most expressive and respected Brazilian poets of the 20th century.

Eu possa lhe dizer do amor:
Que não seja imortal, posto que é chama
Mas que seja infinito enquanto dure
Shall I tell you of love: 
Let it not be immortal, since it is flame
But let it be infinite while it lasts
Quote from Soneto de fidelidade (“Fidelity Sonnet”) by Vinicius de Moraes

Há vários motivos para odiar uma pessoa, e um só para amá-la; este prevalece.“There are many reasons to hate a person, and just one to love them; this one prevails.”
Aphorism from O Avesso das Coisas by Carlos Drummond de Andrade

Amar
É coisa de morrer e de matar
Mas tem som de sorriso
To loveI
Is about dying and killing
But it sounds like a smile
Quote from a nameless, tragic chronicle/poem by Hilda Hilst

Mais dia menos dia toda a lembrança se apaga e te surpreendes gargalhando, a vida vibrando outra vez, nova, na garganta, sem culpa nem desculpa. E chegas a pensar: quantas manhãs como esta perdi burramente! O amor é uma doença como outra qualquer.“Day after day, every memory fades away and you get surprised laughing, life vibrating once again, new, in the throat, without guilt or excuses. And you even wonder: how many mornings like these have I stupidly lost! Love is a disease like any other.”
Quote from the chronicle Sobre o amor (“On Love”) by Ferreira Gullar

We’re curious: Which of these love quotes in Portuguese did you find most moving? 

6. Don’t say adeus, say até logo!

It has been a pleasure to present you with this quick guide to expressing love in Portuguese. You’ve learned a good variety of Portuguese love phrases as well as some important details regarding idioms and cultural information.

If you feel we’ve missed some good Portuguese love phrases, please share with us your contribution!

Also, don’t miss out on the opportunity to continue developing your knowledge of all things Portuguese. The best way to do so is by exploring PortuguesePod101.com, the number-one place online to study this romantic language. 

PortuguesePod101 provides a variety of free learning resources and engaging lessons, combining the best of solo study materials and more conventional classroom teaching methods. You can expand your vocabulary using our themed vocab lists, go through one of our learning pathways, or even upgrade to a Premium PLUS membership to take advantage of our MyTeacher service. 

Video, audio, text, and real human contact blend in a most interesting learning experience on PortuguesePod101.com. Take your first step toward fluency today—your Portuguese-speaking partner will thank you for it. 

Happy learning!

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