7 Of The Most Unexpectedly Romantic Things You Can Do For A Man

Photo: Jacob Lund | Shutterstock
man embracing woman at sunset

You might not realize it based on their reaction to most romantic comedies, but men DO appreciate romance. The thing is — when you’re a guy, normally, the expectation is that you’re going to be on the giving end of the romance and not the receiving end.

Maybe it’s just another social stereotype, but there are whole industries built around simple ways that men can learn how to be romantic, and show women that they’re trying to be romantic — flowers, Whitman chocolate samplers, the entire jewelry industry. And yet, the same can’t be said when it comes to men.

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What do women get men when they want to be romantic? While men appreciate those gestures (boy, do they ever), it stands to reason that there probably should be a few non-sexual romantic ideas to let a man know that you think he’s the dreamiest. Those ways do exist and they don’t take much effort.

So what does romance mean to a man? Well, if you want to warm your man’s heart, there are sweet, unexpected romantic ideas you can use on your special guy to make him feel loved.

Here are 7 of the most unexpectedly romantic things you can do for a man:

1. Pick where to go to dinner

The whole “where do you want to go" / "I don’t know where to do you want to go” dynamic has become such a relationship cliché, but it can be a real source of frustration with couples. There's that pervasive sense of “Why can’t you just say what you want and not turn this into a debate?”

If you really want to show your man that you love him, give him a stress-free evening by stepping up and making the call about your dinner plans. No debate. Just “Yep, we’re going HERE.” He’ll love it. (Particularly if you pick a place he doesn’t hate.)

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2. Run him a bath

Most guys aren’t used to being pampered. They shower quickly, throw on some cologne, and that’s the end of their morning routine. So, if you want to give your man some extra romantic attention, why not set him up for his own little morning spa?

Get a bath ready for him, complete with candles and your favorite bath bombs. Or if they’re not into sitting in a tub, get a foot bath ready for them, followed by a foot rub. The idea is — to slow down their hygiene routine and give their bodies some TLC. (Added benefit: If things turn amorous afterward, you know for a fact that they’re clean and smell good.)

3. Go see the movie he wants to see

Go see that big dumb summer blockbuster without any complaints. You don’t have to fake overwhelming enthusiasm, but just be positive about going and keep the eye rolls to a minimum.

He doesn’t want you to pretend that you like it. He knows it’s not high art. He just wants to share a fun experience with you. Even mocking a bad movie together can be really entertaining — just don’t go in with a pervasive sense of “I don’t want to be here.”

4. Tell him he looks great

Men don’t have a lot of experience when it comes to being complimented for their looks. Granted, that happens to some men because they pay almost no attention to their physical appearance, but on a whole, we don’t often tell men that they look pretty today.

With that in mind, if you want to sweep a man off his feet or romance him a bit, tell him, “Damn, you look good today.” Wait for the appropriate time to say it, of course. Maybe hold it back until he’s wearing a new shirt or just following a haircut (not when he’s lounging in his old sweats), but you’ll be surprised by the impact a simple compliment will have on your man. He’ll love it.

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5. Bring him flowers

Sure, it’s a big ol’ cliché, but it’s a big ol’ cliché for women. Men don’t normally receive flowers unless they’re in the hospital for something really, really serious. So why not subvert his expectations a little and bring him flowers one day for no particular reason?

If your man isn’t the flowery kind, you can always bring him just a potted plant or a Japanese peace lily. The kind of flower isn’t as important as the fact that you decided to try to woo him with some old-school romance techniques. He’ll appreciate the gift and feel pretty special too.

6. Organize a night out with his friends

The best romantic gestures are unselfish gestures — the kind that brings the desires of the other person to the forefront. One way to can pull this off with your guy is to put together a fun night out... and NOT invite yourself.

Call up some of his best pals and plan an excursion. It can be something simple (bowling or a movie) or something more involved (a fishing trip or some other vacation).

It might not seem particularly lovey-dovey if you won’t be with your man, but the fact that you went so out-of-your-way out of your concern for his happiness... that’s romantic AF.

7. Stay in

Cancel plans. Tell your friends you’ll see them another time. Don’t get out of bed. Order food in. Make the conscious choice that you’re going to stay at your man’s side all day and that you want him to do the same thing, preferably near the bedroom.

Even if intimacy isn’t on the table, just this simple act will remind your guy that he’s a big priority in your life and, sometimes, all you need to be happy is to spend a day doing nothing with him.

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Tom Burns has served as a contributing editor for 8BitDad and The Good Men Project, and his writing has been featured on Babble, Brightly,, Time Magazine, Reading Rainbow, The Huffington Post, xoJane, and various other sites.