There are many different types of hugs, each with its own, unique meaning. If you’re curious about what certain hugs mean, this guide will help you iron them all out.
This information will be especially useful if you’ve recently started seeing someone and are wondering whether they see you as just a friend or maybe something a little more.
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You know those big, squeezing hugs… the one where he envelops you in his arms and sometimes even picks you up? Those are called bear hugs. These hugs are typically a sign that a man really likes you, has missed you, or wants to show his care and protection for you.
This is one of those super intimate hugs given when you’re cuddling someone you really have the hots for. These hugs are usually accompanied by kissing, touching, and sometimes even sex. These hugs are signs of amazing chemistry and strong feelings.
Generally, people are only this intimate with someone they really care about so if you’re lucky enough to experience a cuddle hug, it’s a really good sign.
Sometimes a guy's hug includes a little squeeze. Generally speaking, this sort of hug shows he cares for you and wants you to know you mean a lot to him. That being said, you could mean a lot to him as just a friend. Oftentimes, friends share this sort of hug and affection.
Deciphering whether you mean a lot as a friend or as something more could be confusing in this situation.
If you’re wondering what it means when a guy squeezes you in a hug, it’s important to pay attention to the type of hug that’s given.
The ‘resting heads’ hug is when both parties rest up against each other. If he is taller than you, he will gently rest his head on top of yours. Alternatively, you might find him resting his head on your shoulder, arm, or chest.
If you’re in a relationship with someone special, you’re likely to receive this sort of hug fairly often. The ‘resting heads’ hug shows care, affection, trust, and a strong union - provided both parties reciprocate the affection, if not, it’s a one-sided hug.
Wrapping his arms around you from behind is an intimate hug. You won’t usually be on the receiving end of a back hug unless he cares a lot about you romantically. This sort of hug isn’t the type of hug friends or people who’ve just started seeing each other generally give.
So, if you’re receiving a back hug, he has feelings for you. This sort of hug also displays intimacy, playfulness, protectiveness, and closeness.
This awkward hug involves two people hugging with the upper portion of their bodies only, keeping their lower halves well separated. In this instance, there’s a physical distance between the two of you and it’s a clear indicator that he doesn’t have strong feelings for you.
This sort of hug is generally shared between strangers or professionals as a greeting. Giving and receiving this sort of hug is generally awkward.
When you run up to him and he catches you, it’s called a catching hug. This is one of the more romantic hugs and signals clear feelings between the two of you. This is especially true if you wrap your legs around his waist after he catches you.
Occasionally, this sort of hug might be shared between best friends who haven’t seen each other in a while, too.
If you’re not best friends who’ve missed each other dearly then it’s safe to say there’s obvious romance between the two of you.
Side hugs can be very confusing. They are far from the most romantic hugs, so you’re bound to wonder what it means when a guy hugs you from the side. If you’ve only recently met the guy, he might give you a side hug because he’s unsure about where he stands with you or what your boundaries are.
In other instances, people who feel obligated to hug each other, without having any romantic feelings for each other, might opt for these sorts of hugs. This sort of body language signifies awkwardness, unfamiliarity, and politeness only.
A long hug symbolizes that he cares for you and feels protective over you. You can trust that a long hug means he has strong feelings for you. It’s very uncommon for men to wrap their arms around you for more than a few seconds if they only care about you as a friend.
Long hugs are generally shared between two people who want to hold onto the moment a little longer. They don’t want to let go.
These hugs are usually accompanied by strong emotions - maybe you’ve really missed each other, want to express your deep love and care for one another, or aren’t going to see each other for a while. Whatever it is, this is a very intimate hug and generally equals deep emotions.
Perhaps the most awkward of all the hugs out there… The ragdoll hug is when one person gives the other a hug but it’s not reciprocated. In other words, one person just stands there or goes limp while the other hugs them.
In this scenario, there are clearly no romantic feelings between the two parties or one party is angry with the other. This scenario could also play out if one person is very uncomfortable with physical touch.
This is when you put your hands in each other’s pockets during an embrace. It’s a strong indication that you like each other as more than friends and that you are both extremely comfortable with each other. You’ll hardly ever see two friends hugging like this.
Pocket hugs symbolize closeness and comfort. If you’re in a relationship, a man might also hug you like this in public as a way of showing you’re his.
A limp hug is one of the more awkward hugs. You both hug each other, but it’s limp and lacks affection. It’s a sign that neither of you is interested in the hug. It’s common for people that feel obligated to hug to give one of these hugs.
A twirling hug involves him picking you up and twirling you around in the air, just like in the movies. This is a romantic, playful gesture that shows he cares about you. This sort of hug usually takes place when two people haven’t seen each other for an extended period of time and have really missed each other.
A hug around your waist typically involves him pulling you in closer. This hug is intimate and romantic in every way and is a sure sign he has feelings for you or sees you as more than a friend.
Usually, this type of embrace, commonly seen amongst couples, is followed by kissing, cuddling, or leaning on each other as a form of affection.
A pat on the back hardly qualifies as a hug or an embrace. Typically, the man will lean in giving you a quick pat on the back. This kind of gesture is generally shared amongst colleagues or strangers. It shows care and concern for the other person on a platonic level only.
You might also see this sort of embrace when a man feels awkward about giving or receiving physical affection. You’ll hardly ever see two people who have romantic feelings for each other share this type of embrace.
These types of hugs are more intimate than a pat on the back. It means that a person cares about you and your feelings or is concerned about your well-being.
When someone hugs you like this, it is a form of affection and intimacy. This might be a more intimate kind of hug but occasionally this type of hug is also shared between close friends who are showing their care and concern for each other.
If a man gives you a quick hug, it could be for various reasons. Consider the moment and the nature of your relationship to determine what he means with this hug.
Romantic partners might hug you like this because they are in a hurry to get somewhere and don’t want to be late. They might not have time for a long goodbye.
When a man first starts dating a woman, it’s common for him to be full of nervous energy. This can lead to quick, awkward hugs.
This type of hug is when two people hug starting from the left side. Your left shoulders and your hearts will touch each other before you complete the hug. This type of hug shows affection, and that you both care about each other.
When a guy holds you like this, it’s because he wants to look deep into your eyes. This is typical if he wants to tell you something, or when he is getting ready to kiss you. It can be particularly romantic if you share mutual expressions, making it a great idea for couples’ photo shoots.
Hugs like this are not common among friends and mean that he cares a lot about you.
A man will, nine times out of ten, only sneak up on a woman for an embrace if he’s confident in both his and her feelings for each other. If you’re in a romantic relationship with someone you might find that when he’s in a playful mood he sneaks up for a hug out of nowhere.
This is a cute way of showing love and affection and keeping the mood between partners light.
This type of hug is obviously sexual by nature. Generally in this type of hug a man will hug you, pushing his erection up against you. By doing this, he may be trying to drop some hints about how he feels - hot and horny. This type of hug is only shared between people who are intimate with each other.
All in all, there are some clear, differentiating factors between friendly hugs and romantic ones.
Generally speaking, romantic hugs entail the following:
On the other hand, friendly or polite hugs may look as follows:
If a man wants to hug you frequently it’s probably because it’s his way of showing you love and affection. Hugs are generally loved by those whose love language is physical touch. If he wants to hug you frequently, take it as a sign that he has romantic feelings for you and sees you as more than just a friend.
These sorts of hugs are a good indicator that he has feelings for you and doesn’t want to let you go. He might be hugging you for a long time as a way of trying to feel close to you or because he anticipates missing you.
Hugging has a number of health benefits. Hugging releases oxytocin - the love hormone, which results in feelings of calmness and relaxation. Furthermore, oxytocin has been shown to reduce inflammation and stress, lower your heart rate, improve wound healing, and reduce cravings.
Hugs are also responsible for improving our immune systems, making us happier, and deepening our relationships. So, it’s no wonder that men feel amazing when they hug someone they love and why they enjoy doing it so regularly.
There are many different types of hugs, each with their own unique meaning. Understanding what a certain hug means might give you a better understanding/more clarity with regards to where you stand with someone.