Honestly, I think the distinction between these two labels is overblown cultural marketing hype, and really shouldn't be that important as far as a guy is concerned.
Both imply that the girl is "attractive" (which is the only universal notion) and the only reason we make the distinction between these two different kinds of attractiveness is because society conditions us that way. But for me, I don't see "cute vs hot"...I only see whether I find a girl attractive or not. Later I might think of how I would describe why she's attractive, but it's not the first thing that matters to me.
In terms of definitions, I'd say that "hot" refers to stereotypical attractiveness, the kind of traits that one looks for in super models. I'd say that "cute" refers to any kind of attractiveness that's not stereotypical, and is therefore more subjective.
Also, "cuteness" refers more to the features that unique about someone, like the way someone smiles. And since faces are what we use to uniquely recognize someone, it's also usually facial features that we think of as making someone cute or not.
I'm probably trying to be too logical about this...
Her smile. A girl's smile is the first thing that grabs my attention and makes her much more likely to be put into the "cute" category. If it's a genuine, innocent, fun-loving smile, that is. I'm not attracted to all girls who I've seen smile, but it definitely helps. Another thing is her height (I'm more likely to consider a girl "cute" if she's shorter than me). But the most important thing of all is her personality: "Would we click well together, and is she a good person?"
A hot girl is physically attractive, and perhaps very flirtatious. I consider "hot" girls to be the ones who are adored in Hollywood and by the media and celebrity culture. I am much more interested in having a "cute" girl than a hot one as a girlfriend.
If you really want to know what makes a girl cute just look at women like Ashley Tisdale, Valerie Poxlietner and Cassadee Pope. The physical qualities that make a woman hot is someone like how Britney Spears looked like in the music video I'm a slave for you.
a cute girl hs a childish mind... and never think abt other she always make fun wth frns...she s naughty wth frns...she hs a gud heart and treat evry1 equally...n kindness 2 every1...n appearance of you hw dress and hw cool you spk 2 people and hw you don gt tired of anythin... try thinkin positive...n hot defines ur structure...n d way you dress... and hw sexy you r...dat dos't matter be cute rather dan hot...