I don't know exactly what cute means in the guy terms but some said it means cute like a 'puppy' or something 'safe'.
'Hotness/sexiness' would mean like a Megan Fox look or something seductive I guess.
Both are beautiful to you... or is beauty different from those adjectives? At least all of them are some sort of attractiveness.
So what would you prefer for a serious relationship? Because I know many guys would love to date a sexy girl too with a hot body, etc.
I always get called cute. Sometimes I get the other when going out, but normally I'm the cute one because I'm petite, but guys have called me unapproachable until they get to know me (my personality).
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It means different things to different guys. I have yet to be with a single girl who understood me when I called them cute. For me to call you very cute is one of my highest forms of approval. For me to call you sexy would mean in its own context something positive about you, but cute is a higher level of appreciation than sexy in my own lexicon. Sometimes cute means extremely physically attractive, and other times cute means extremely physically attractive in combination with other very positive mental-vibe attributes. It also implies a "very endearing softness" and feminine-ness, for me. For some other guys, these statements don't hold true, and for that reason I understand your confusion. I can only speak for me.
You've just got to get him to tell you what he means in different terms or take it in the context in which he uses the word. Example: to me Jennifer Anniston IS CUTE, i.e., one of the most attractive physical specimens that God has ever made (with minimal implication about her mind/behavior) "Cute" is WAY more of a compliment and way stronger of an expression of my desire than me saying that I think some typical Playboy Playmate is "sexy". Again, that's just how *I* feel about those words. PS For further clarity, I think a Jennifer Anniston Playboy centerfold would be one of the most desirable centerfolds in HISTORY - even though I use the word "cute" to describe her!1