There are many different ways to express your love using Mandarin Chinese.
And, of course, you don’t have to stick to one single phrase to do that.
Whether you’re trying to impress someone or convey your love to your partner in their native language - you’ll never know when you’ll need these phrases.
In this guide, we’ll cover all the different phrases and terms you can use to express your interest, love, or affection for someone else using Mandarin Chinese.
If there’s a romantic occasion just around the corner, you’d definitely want to get into this!😊
How to say “I love you” in Mandarin Chinese
The most literal and standard translation for “I love you” in Chinese is 我爱你 (wǒ ài nǐ).
- 我 means “I” or “me”
- 爱 translates to “love”
- 你 means “you”
An accurate, simple, and no-frills phrase - but not always the best in every situation.
In many cases, native speakers don’t use 我爱你 when speaking to their friends or even family (we’ll explore this further down the article).
The thing about the word “love” in Mandarin Chinese is this: It carries a powerful and deeply-rooted meaning.
For instance, we say things like “I love my mother” and “I love eating hotpot” in English.
Obviously, you don’t love eating hotpot as much as you love your mother, but the same word is used anyway.
In Mandarin Chinese, this concept doesn’t apply.
You would use the word 爱 for people you genuinely love and not the food you enjoy. We rarely use 爱 to describe things or objects we like. 😅
我爱你 can be used when speaking to a partner or spouse, and depending on your upbringing, this may be used in Chinese families (though this isn’t commonly the case).
If someone said 我爱你 to you, you can reply with a 我也爱你 (wǒ yě ài nǐ), which translates to “I love you, too.”