My friend Monica from the USA was married to a Colombian guy, she was writing a letter to him and she wanted to say that he was very handsome in Spanish.
Question for you, my dear friend who wants to learn Spanish:
How should Monica tell her husband that he is a good-looking man?
I’m pretty sure that if you were to advise my friend, you would tell her to call him “guapo”.
After all, that’s the translation that Google throws right after you type “handsome” into the Spanish translator.
But, is Guapo the only way to call a guy handsome in Spanish?
Of course not!
In this blog post, we’ll go through 26 different ways to call a guy handsome in Spanish.
Let’s get started!
26 different Expressions to call a guy handsome in Spanish
You have to know that some of these expressions are very common in Colombia, the country where I grew up in.
Some of them are also neutral and you can use them anywhere around the world.
Don’t worry, I’ll specify when and where to use them, so you can be safe and speak confidently with that crush of yours.
Now, you have to know that In Spanish, it’s NOT the same if you want to compliment your husband, a kid, or simply your crush.
In other words: Guapo could work for all, but if you want to be more accurate, you have to know more than that.
You need to select your words because when you go beyond guapo, you could use words to send a message that might not be proper, or it could even have sexual intentions.
And we don’t want weird confusion, do we?
So, since our goal when we speak Spanish is to be clear in our messages, I arranged the following list according to how attractive a man looks to you.
We’ll start with the least “hot” and neutral expressions to the hottest and the ones that communicate desire.
Let’s begin with #1…
“Bello” means beautiful, however, this word might sound a little delicate and it has a touch of sweetness.
If you want to call a guy this way then it would be better if you do it in a poetic context, Like:
- Él era el hombre más bello que había visto en mi vida: He was the most beautiful man I had ever seen in my life.
This word is also commonly used to describe kids or babies. For example:
- Qué bebé tan bello: What a beautiful baby.
- El niño nuevo es muy bello: The new kid is very beautiful.
The translation for this word is “pretty”, and this is how most girls would refer to a nice-looking guy when they try to be neutral, without actually liking the person.
However, if you are a man and you call another guy Lindo that will communicate that you like the other guy in a romantic context.
Here are some examples using Lindo:
- El novio de Diana es muy lindo: Diana’s boyfriend is really pretty.
- El jugador bajito de baloncesto era muy lindo: The short basketball player was really pretty.
This adjective works pretty much like the previous one.
It sounds very neutral when girls use it, so if you hear a girl saying that a guy is Bonito, they’re not saying or implying that they like him, they’re just commenting on how good looking he is:
- Mi primo es muy bonito: My cousin is very handsome.
- Un chico muy bonito vino a visitar a mi hermana hoy: A very handsome guy came to visit my sister today.
This word is especially useful when you want to say that a guy you’re describing has something nice looking, but he is not that handsome.
There’s just something about this person that decorates him, like his attitude, his grooming, the way he talks, etc…
- Él es agraciado, nada especial: He has something good, but nothing special.
- Tu novio me parece agraciado, nada más: I think your boyfriend has something good, that’s it.
This is a general word we use to describe an attractive person.
Actually, that’s the exact translation for “attractive” in Spanish.
People use this word to compliment a man formally.
It’s just like if you wanted to praise someone who you respect or communicate that person is attractive without getting into details.
Here are a couple of examples:
- Mi jefe es un hombre muy atractivo y elegante: My boss is a very attractive and fancy man.
- El abuelo era un hombre muy atractivo: Grandpa was a very attractive man.
People use this word in Colombia.
I’ve never heard it anywhere else, and it just means “good looking man”.
It’s also important to realize that in this country, heterosexual men use this word when they comment about good looking another man is.
This word kinda gives the idea of a man saying that to another dude looks good, without any sexual or romantic intention.
- Cristiano Ronaldo exitoso, buen jugador y además de eso es muy pintoso: Cristiano Ronaldo is a successful, good player and besides that he ‘s very handsome.
- Yo sé que mi hermano es un tipo muy pintoso:I know my brother is a very handsome guy
#7 Ser una pinta
This phrase is a little variation of the previous word.
Men also use it in Colombia to describe a good-looking man, and even girls might use this expression to describe a good-looking friend without any romantic interest.
- El profesor de matemáticas es una pinta: The math teacher is very handsome
- Mi novia me dijo que mi mejor amigo era una pinta, ¿debería preocuparme?: My girlfriend told me that my best friend was very handsome, should I be worried about that?
#8 Buen mozo
This phrase is a very formal way to say handsome in Spanish.
Not only that, but if someone is a “buen mozo”, that means that he has a nice body, he’s tall and he probably won’t be unnoticed when he is among other people.
- El director de la escuela era un tipo alto y buen mozo, incluso las chicas de la escuela no podían dejar de mirarlo: The principal of the school was a tall and good-looking, even young girls couldn’t stop looking at him.
- ¿Ese es el tipo de quien hablabas? No es tan buen mozo después de todo: Is that the guy you were talking about? He’s not that handsome after all.
I’m not sure if in places outside of Colombia they would use this word, but people from the coast in this country use it to call someone handsome in Spanish.
This is how theyuse it:
- Tu amigo está bien simpático: Your friend is really good looking.
- No veía a Paco desde que teníamos 10 años, ahora está muy simpático: I didn’t see Paco since we were 10 years old, he’s really handsome now.
#10 Bien parecido
This is the exact translation for the phrase “good looking”.
If you say this, it means that you’re just admiring the beauty of the guy, nothing sexual or like if you were attracted to him.
He just looks good, that’s it.
Actually, I have to mention that women and other men might also use this phrase to imply that a guy looks good in a formal way.
- Él es un chico muy bien parecido: He is a very good looking guy.
- Mi vecino es bien parecido y serio: My neighbor is good looking and serious.
If someone asks you how do you say handsome in Spanish, this is probably the first word that comes to mind.
And that’s the accurate and close translation for handsome in Spanish.
Here are two examples with this word:
- Pacho, ¡qué guapo estás hoy! ¿vas a salir con Lucía?: Pacho, How handsome you look today! Are you going on a date with Lucía?
- No puedo creer lo guapo que te ves después de 6 meses en el gimnasio: I can’t believe how handsome you look after 6 months in the gym.
The translation for this word is “fancy”.
However, people might use “elegante” in Spanish to describe a handsome man too.
In fact, if you say that someone is elegante, the idea you communicate is that the person you’re describing looks good, and he takes care of himself.
Now, if you use this adjective, it means that you don’t want people to think that you like him.
Usually, I hear people saying that a man is “Elegante” when they describe a middle-aged man.
Check out these examples:
- Aunque Alberto tiene 60 años, aún se ve muy bien, es un hombre muy elegante: Although Albert is 60 years old, she still looks good, he is a very handsome man.
- Mi abuelo sigue siendo un hombre muy elegante, siempre va bien vestido y afeitado: My grandpa keeps being a very elegant man, he’s always well-dressed and shaved.
#13 Tiene porte
This is one of those phrases that can’t be used with the verbs “ser” or “estar”.
Because with this phrase, we’re saying that the guy who we talk about has something that makes him look good and that something is a good height, and great body.
- ¿Ese es el tipo que dijiste que tiene porte? Se ve más alto en televisión: Is that the handsome guy you were talking about? He looks taller on TV.
- En la agencia me dijeron que yo no tenía porte para ser modelo de revista: At the agency they told me that my body wasn’t fit enough to be a magazine model.
#14 Tiene presencia
Here, we’re talking about the presence of a man.
If you translate “tiene presencia”, then you’d get: “he has a presence”.
Now, If you hear that in Spanish, that means that the man being described can’t be unnoticed.
His face might not be the best one, but his good body makes a difference because everyone around him is probably going to notice him.
- ¡Mira, mira! Ahí va el tipo del noticiero y ¡qué presencia tiene!: Look, look! There he goes, the guy from the news, and what a good body he has!
- El novio de mi ex es feo, pero tiene presencia: My ex’s boyfriend is ugly, but he can’t be unnoticed.
# 15 Hermoso
Of course, you can always call a guy “hermoso”, which means beautiful.
I think this is the highest level of describing a handsome man that doesn’t include slang or an idiom.
However, have in mind that a heterosexual man would rarely call another guy “hermoso” unless he’s doing it in a respectful a very formal way.
- Alejandra dijo que él era el hombre más hermoso que había visto en su vida: Alejandra said that he was the most beautiful man she had ever seen in her life.
- Mi hijo siempre será el hombre más hermoso para mí: My son will always be the most beautiful man for me.
#16 Ser un Adonis
Honestly, I didn’t know this word. I’ve never heard it in Colombia, but I learned it as I was researching to make this article.
I found it everywhere, and it comes from Greek mythology.
People use it to refer to a young man who has extraordinary beauty.
Here’s an example I found online:
- Juan era todo un adonis en el colegio, todas las chicas se volvían locas por él: Juan was really handsome in school, all girls were crazy for him.
People use this word in many countries of Central America, I have especially heard it in Mexican TV shows, movies, and youtube videos.
We can say that this is just an informal way to call a man handsome, for example:
- No recuerdo que Mario fuera tan chulo: I don’t remember Mario was so good looking.
- Amor qué chulo estás hoy. No irás a salir sin mí, ¿verdad?: Honey, you look so handsome today. You won’t be going out without me, right?
This word is very popular among Latin American Spanish speakers.
Honestly, I’m not sure about people using this word in Spain, and If you’ve heard it in there, let me know in the comments at the end of the article.
It’ll be interesting to hear about it.
“Papacito” is how most people would call a handsome guy in Spanish, at least in an informal way, the meaning is kinda the same as “hottie”.
Two examples with this word:
- ¿Viste a ese papacito que iba caminando por allá?: Did you see that hot guy walking over there?
- No sabía que tu hermano era un papacito: I didn’t know your brother was so hot.
A variation of the word “papacito”, but adding “zote” to maximize the meaning of what you want to communicate.
These are some examples using “papazote”:
- Mira, qué papazote viene ahí: Look, what a hottie is coming over there.
- Mi hijo un papazote: My son is a good looking man.
#20 Qué papi
The word “papi” can mean some different things, especially because in some parts of Latin America people use this word as slang for “buddy”, and even mothers may call their male children this way.
However, and especially if you’re a woman and if you say that a guy is a “papi”, that means that you’re attracted to him, and you like him.
Colombians may also use the expression “Mero papi”, which means the same thing: What a hottie, or he’s quite a hottie.
- Ese actor es mero papi: That actor is quite a hottie.
- Mira a leo, tiene solo músculos desde que entró al gimnasio, ¡qué papi!: Look at Leo, all he’s got is muscles ever since he got into the gym, he is so hot.
If you type “Churro” on Google, you’ll find that this is a snack people prepare in some parts of Latin America.
A churro is some kind of sweetened, and full of sugar bread that may come in different shapes.
Spanish native speakers love churros, and therefore, if you call a guy “churro”, that means that you find him very attractive.
It’s kind of slang for hot or hottie.
- ¡Uy, qué churro de hombre!: Wow, that ‘s such a hot man.
- ¿Cuándo vuelves a salir con el churro del fin de semana pasado?: When are you dating again the hottie you dated last weekend?
#22 Ser un tarrao’
This is a Colombian expression, and it’s quite curious because it doesn’t make sense to me.
You see, “tarrao” comes from “tarro”, which means bucket.
Now, when we maximize the word using “ado”, and abbreviate it with “ao” to come up with “tarrao’”, you’re calling a guy a big bucket.
I have no idea, but some women in Colombia (at least in Medellín) use this expression to mean that a guy is hot, like this:
- Ese Jairo es un tarrao’: That Jario is super hot.
- El tipo del restaurante era todo un tarrao’: The guy from the restaurant was so hot.
#23 Está como un tren
We don’t use this idiom in Colombia, and according to what I found online, people use it mostly in Spain.
Basically, it means that, in your opinion, the guy you describe is extremely attractive.
- Mauricio defnitivamente está como un tren: Mauricio is extremely attractive.
- Albeiro ha estado a dieta por 3 meses y ahora está como un tren: Albeiro Has been on a diet for 3 months, and he is extremely attractive now.
#24 Está como quiere
This phrase might sound a little sexual, and if you say this to a man, it means that he is extremely handsome in your eyes, and he kind of turns you on.
- Manuel lo tiene todo, porte, presencia… ¡está como quiere!: Manuel has everything, a nice presence, he’s good-looking… He’s super hot.
- No cambio a mi esposo por nadie, él está como quiere: I won’t trade my husband for anyone else, he’s super hot.
#25 Está bueno
This expression is purely physical, and it means “he is hot”.
If you describe a guy as “esta bueno”, that means that you don’t care much about his face or personality, the focus is how good his body is.
A guy like this would probably have big muscles, and looks pretty good for you:
- Cuando éramos niños Fernando era muy flaco, pero creció y ahora está bueno: When we were kids Fernando was pretty thin but now he ‘s hot.
- ¡Ese Brad Pitt está más bueno que nunca!: That Brad Pitt is hotter than ever.
#26 Está pasado de bueno
This expression works pretty much like the previous one, but this one is trying to maximize how hot the guy you’re describing looks for you.
Again, if someone uses this idiom, then the image that should pop up in your head is the one of a big and attractive man.
Here’s one example:
- Andrés entró al gimnasio y está pasado de bueno: Andrés joined the gym and now he’s better than ever.
Be careful with the phrases or words you use to say handsome in Spanish
Remember that if you don’t know the meaning of the words, you might be in danger of using the wrong expressions with the wrong people.
So, if you want to be safe just go with “guapo” which is the translation for “handsome”.
That word is going to work for every situation.
It’s going to sound neutral and it won’t leave people thinking that you like a guy with romantic interest.
Other Expressions that deserve to be mentioned in this list are:
- Qué bebé – Qué bebesote: What a baby, or what a big baby.
- Cosota: Big thing. This means super hot.
- Bombón: Lollypop. This means that the guy is really something you like.
And there you go, those are some expressions to say handsome in Spanish.
Here’s an infographic you can pin, save or print so you can have access to these expressions at any time:
I’m sure that some of these expressions might be surprisingly funny for you, especially because they probably don’t make much sense in English.
Now… remember my friend Monica at the beginning of this article?
She wanted to praise her husband and call him “guapo” in a letter.
So, here’s question for you:
Which of the 26 expressions you learned in this blog post would you advise Monica to use?
Let me know in the comments!