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Like vs. Crush: What's the Difference?

Edited by Aimie Carlson || By Janet White || Published on February 25, 2024
'Like' is a feeling of fondness or enjoyment, while a 'crush' is a strong infatuation, often romantic and intense.

Key Differences

Liking someone involves a general sense of appreciation and enjoyment in their company. A crush, however, is characterized by an intense feeling of romantic attraction, often accompanied by nervousness and excitement.
'Like' can refer to platonic feelings towards friends, hobbies, or objects, indicating a positive attitude or preference. In contrast, a crush usually denotes a deeper, more consuming attraction, typically towards another person, and is often more short-lived and intense.
The feeling of liking someone is usually steady and can be openly expressed. A crush, on the other hand, is often characterized by a sense of secrecy and an overwhelming desire to be noticed by the object of one’s affection.
‘Like’ can evolve into deeper feelings over time, while a crush can be seen as a starting point of romantic interest, potentially leading to more profound emotions.
Liking someone is often associated with a comfortable and secure feeling, whereas having a crush might involve idealization and intense longing.

Comparison Chart


General appreciation or enjoyment
Intense, often romantic infatuation


Can be platonic or romantic
Primarily romantic or physical attraction


Open and steady
Often secretive and overwhelming


Long-term and stable
Usually short-term and intense


Comfortable and secure
Idealization and longing

Like and Crush Definitions


To have a preference for something.
She likes vanilla ice cream more than chocolate.


A fleeting feeling of romantic idealization.
Her crush on the new teacher was the talk of the class.


To enjoy an activity or process.
He likes playing soccer on weekends.


A strong but usually short-lived romantic infatuation.
She has a crush on her classmate.


To find someone or something pleasant.
I really like spending time with my friends.


A strong desire to be noticed or liked by someone.
He had a crush and tried to impress her with gifts.


To approve of or endorse something.
I like your idea for the project.


The object of such an intense infatuation.
She was his crush since high school.


To have positive feelings towards someone.
She likes her classmates and gets along well with them.


An intense and often unspoken attraction to someone.
His crush on the celebrity was quite evident.


Is a crush always romantic?

Generally, a crush has a romantic connotation, but it can also be based on admiration.

How do you know if you like someone?

You enjoy their company and feel positive and comfortable around them.

Can a like turn into a crush?

Yes, liking someone can sometimes develop into a crush.

Is liking someone a deeper emotion than having a crush?

Liking can be more steady and profound, whereas a crush is often more about infatuation.

What characterizes a crush?

A crush is characterized by intense, often romantic and short-lived infatuation.

Can you like and have a crush on the same person?

Yes, it's possible to both like and have a crush on someone simultaneously.

Do crushes last long?

Crushes are typically short-lived, intense infatuations.

Do likes and crushes feel different?

Yes, liking is usually a comfortable, secure feeling, while a crush is more intense and exciting.

What does it mean to like someone?

To have positive feelings of enjoyment or appreciation towards them.

Is it normal to have a crush?

Yes, having a crush is a normal part of human emotions.

Can you control having a crush?

It's often difficult to control the onset of a crush as it's a spontaneous feeling.

What should you do if you don't reciprocate someone's crush?

Be honest and gentle in expressing your lack of romantic interest.

What are common signs of having a crush?

Nervousness, excitement, and constant thoughts about the person are common signs.

Can a crush affect friendships?

Yes, a crush can sometimes complicate friendships, especially if feelings aren't mutual.

How do crushes start?

Crushes often start with physical attraction or idealization of someone.

Can a crush turn into love?

A crush can evolve into love as you get to know the person better.

Is it okay to act on a crush?

Acting on a crush is okay as long as it's respectful and consensual.

Is it okay to have multiple crushes?

Having multiple crushes is normal, especially when you're exploring your feelings.

How do you differentiate between like and love?

Love is a deeper, more committed emotion, whereas like is more about enjoyment and preference.

How do you deal with a crush?

Acknowledging your feelings and either expressing them or letting them pass naturally is a common approach.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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