How To Compliment Girls Without Commenting On Their Appearance

The things that are told to us as children and adolescents stay with us longer than we realize.

It feels good to give and receive compliments,  but when it comes to complimenting girls and complimenting women, all too often we comment on their appearance. While such a compliment is appreciated once and while, when young girls grow up only validated based on how they look, it sends a dangerous message they are only worth what they present externally.  

On the flip side, boys are often complimented on their skills, interests, and abilities. They are complimented for being strong and brave, while girls are compared to Disney Princess and simply called "beautiful." 

How we compliment girls matters. To ensure girls feel confident from a young age, and through adulthood, about their qualities that have nothing to do with their looks, it's important we let them know what it is about them that is worth being valued.  

Compliment her  intelligence.

Complimenting a girl's intelligence can help affirm her self-esteem. Superficial compliments on things we have no control over, like our natural appearance, don't do as much as a compliment that acknowledges inner-work. 

Praise her accomplishments.

Find out what she has been working on or has accomplished. Imagine how diminishing it must feel to have worked so hard to create something, only to have your looks be the center of praise. Complimenting a girl's accomplishments will empower her to continue pursuing her goals. 

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Compliment her creativity.

In whatever way her creativity manifests, be sure to tell her how awesome it is.  Pay attention to her passion and curiosity. Listen to, and compliment, her ideas and her dreams. 

Compliment her personality.

The most important thing you can compliment anyone on is who they are on the inside. Speak about her humor, her values, and all of the things that make her special. You'll be encouraging her to remain true to herself and know that she is enough.

Be sincere.

With any compliment, remember to be sincere. Take the time to think about your compliment before you pay it. Think about how your words will affect the person receiving them.

For some compliment inspo, check out some of these compliments women and girls said they loved receiving:

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