TW: This article briefly mentions domestic violence and suicide, and your discretion is advised.
It has been almost nine years since the universe gifted us the lyrical treasure that is Shawn Mendes. From a cute face posting song covers on Vine, to becoming one of the most celebrated musicians in the world, our boy has sure come a long way. He has given us four top-notch albums, an incredible Netflix documentary, and innumerable iconic performances.
It is no secret that Shawn is a savior when it comes to music! Just the sound of his smooth voice and the picture of that popped vein and disheveled hair, which we paint in our heads when he hits his falsettos, is enough therapy for us already. But what makes us adore him even more is his top-tier songwriting! Vulnerable, honest, and relatable on many levels, Shawn Mendes’s lyrics are too good to be true. Here are 23 of our favorite picks, and we wonder whether they are yours too!
“I Wonder If I’m Being Real, Do I Speak My Truth, Or Do I Filter How I Feel?”
Starting our list today is the title track for Shawn’s latest album, Wonder. Opening up about the price of fame and the uncertainties in life that he has to face, Shawn has released the voice in his head with this song. ‘Wonder’ has given us an honest sneak peek into the struggles of being under the spotlight constantly and wishing things are perceived in more bandwidth, making it about us just as much as it is about him.
“Won’t You Draw A Map For Me? Laced With Strawberries”
The album’s outlier, everyone! One of Shawn’s favorites (and ours too), this lyric from ‘Teach Me How To Love’ is a powerhouse of imagery! As steamy as it is, the song alludes to islands and oceans, and it seems as though Shawn is, in fact, on a mission. A mission to request to explore his love interest, to treat her with utmost care and devotion. A hot yet noble bop, we say!
“And You’ve Seen All My Darkest Fears Like You’ve Known Me For A Thousand Years”
Imagine being Shawn’s muse! We don’t know about you, but we will never stop gushing about all the love he has poured out on this track. These lyrics from Shawn Mendes’s ‘Always Been You’ go on to prove how vulnerable he has been with his beloved, our queen Camila Cabello. After all, he has confirmed that every song he has ever written is about her. Choosing to love someone despite their flaws is the purest form of love, and this song justifies that so well!
“Sweat Drippin’ Off Me, Before I Even Knew Her Name, la-la-la”
How can we not talk about the ultimate Shawmila anthem, ‘Señorita?’ Ruling the charts, our hearts, and playlists around the globe, this song is, quite literally, the perfect definition of “obsessed!” Talking about a steamy vacation rendezvous at Miami, Camila’s hometown, Shawn’s choice of lyrics for the instant affection he has developed for his ‘Señorita’ is fun yet appealing. Before we knew it, we were hooked, but we bet you were too!
“We Would Sit On The Stoop, I’ll Sing Love Songs To You When We’re Eighty”
What happens when two of our favorite songwriters join forces to pen down a song? We disintegrate into a pool of tears, that’s what happens! When Shawn delivered his verses on Taylor Swift’s ‘Lover (Remix),’ we thanked the universe and longed for a love letter we knew would never arrive. But, hello? We had Shawn’s lyrics! Painting a beautiful picture of growing old with his ‘Lover,’ the delivery of the lyrics by Shawn Mendes on this one, was pure magic.
“Is It Too Late To Tell You That, Everything Means Nothing If I Can’t Have You?”
A confident pop banger, these lyrics from ‘If I Can’t Have You,’ are the cause of our random midnight breakdowns. Shawn has never shirked away from wearing his heart out on his sleeves when it comes to songwriting, but this song combines honesty with persistence to win back lost love. The lyrics harp on being open and more unwilling to give up on the people we care about, because quite often it is not too late!
“I’m Crawling In My Skin, Sometimes I Feel Like Giving Up, But I Just Can’t”
‘In My Blood’ introduced us to a completely different side of Shawn Mendes. The lyrics give us a glimpse of his personal struggles while also highlighting his growth and courage. Shawn speaks about his conflicts with anxiety, the fear of being alone, and being overwhelmed to the point that no distractions can help anymore. But he holds on to his music. And he fights back because giving up just isn’t in his blood! We stan a warrior!
“There’s No Safety Net That’s Underneath, I’m Free Fallin’ All In You”
This lyrical masterpiece on Shawn’s self-titled album is probably one of our favorites! Co-written by Ed Sheeran, listening to ‘Fallin’ All In You’ will paint roses, balloons, giggles, and smiles in your head. As Shawn sings, “Be my summer in a winter day love, I can’t see one thing wrong between the both of us,” we already feel the butterflies pooling in our stomachs. Find us a better song to be serenaded with? We will wait.
“Why Do We Put Each Other Through Hell? Why Can’t We Just Get Over Ourselves?”
If you’ve been secretly in love and too scared or confused to admit it, ‘Why’ will speak to you. The lyrics talk about two people who clearly have romantic feelings for each other but cannot confess. It could be due to a fear of losing them or pretending to not be ready when they are just unsure whether they can sustain the relationship. For whatever reason, Shawn Mendes delivers a simple answer through the lyrics.
“As Long As I Wake Up Today, You Can’t Take My Youth Away”
Shawn wrote ‘Youth’ with Khalid after two terrorist attacks in the UK – the 2017 London Bridge attack and the Manchester Arena bombing, where most victims were children. The lyrics voice Shawn’s solidarity and uplift the spirit of freedom in youth! “Any generation nowadays has the ability to change the world for the better,” he said in an interview for Variety‘s 2018 Power of Young Hollywood. We are so proud of Shawn and for all the right reasons!
“You Ain’t The Ruler Of No Country, Who Made You The Queen?”
Time for some sassy Shawn Mendes! These lyrics from ‘Queen,’ call out all those who put other people down or treat them with disdain. “I just hate people who think they’re better than other people. There’s no reason to. It just bugs me, man,” Shawn told Entertainment Weekly long ago. And we so agree with him! He has worded our feelings so well on this song, and it is a sonic masterpiece as well! Mendes Army keeps winning!
“Baby, Please Have Mercy On Me, Take It Easy On My Heart”
We are slowly moving to younger Shawn, and we can’t help but remember our early stanning days! ‘Mercy’ sounds all-consuming with Shawn’s vocal delivery and massive drum instrumentals. And that is exactly what these lyrics convey! When we are passionate about something or someone, at some point, it becomes so consuming that we find ourselves begging for mercy to stay sane. This passion has the power to overwhelm us if we are not careful.
“Tell Me Why Are We Wasting Time, On All Your Wasted Crying…”
TW: Mention of domestic violence.
We are so thankful for Shawn Mendes and his lyrics that convey important messages to the world through his music. ‘Treat You Better’ essentially sounds like someone falling for another man’s girl. But it is so much more than that. The lyrics bring to light the subject of abusive relationships and domestic violence. And Shawn wants to be there for her as he sings, “Just know that you don’t have to do this alone.” Nope, we are not sobbing.
“I Can’t Give You What You Need, You Deserve More Than I Can Promise”
Shawn knows how to call it quits and still make it understandable, if not less hurtful. These lyrics from ‘Honest,’ the ninth track from Illuminate, are deep beyond what we can tell you. It talks about a separation birthed not out of lack of love but rather out of a realization that he cannot deliver right now. The lyrics make more sense when you also dig up the demo version of ‘Honest,’ but we will leave that exploration to you!
“But I’ve Been On This Train Too Long, People Gettin’ Off And On”
We come back to ‘Understand’ every time we have a self-awareness crisis. If you are too scared of changing into somebody else as time moves on and you meet new people, let Shawn assure you that it is okay. We are all growing, and change is inevitable, “But at the end of the day, you know? You’re the same person. And, and where your heart is, That doesn’t change.” Everybody say “Thank You, Shawn!”
“My Dad Said, “Shawn, Stay With Me, Everything Will Be Alright”…”
TW: Mention of suicide
Can we keep thanking Shawn Mendes for these lyrics? This one from ‘Hold On’ reminds us to be hopeful and unwilling to give up during tough times. Another reason why we love Shawn’s songwriting in ‘Hold On’ is because of how he has put out an uplifting message for people that feel suicidal, “I don’t know what you’re going through, But there’s so much life ahead of you.”
“Make Your Best Mistakes, ‘Cause We Don’t Have The Time To Be Sorry”
Shawn marked his hold on the world with his debut single itself, and to this day, ‘Life Of The Party’ is our jam! Because when Shawn says don’t regret, we listen. The lyrics advocate for the spirit of being fearless in our actions while staying young at heart. We are only going to live once, so if we don’t live it to the best of our fancies simply because of the fear of being judged or criticized, then it is sadly our loss.
“Just Like A Moth Drawn To A Flame, Oh, You Lured Me In, I Couldn’t Sense The Pain”
‘Stitches’ will forever hold a special place in our hearts. The lyrics talk about hurting emotionally to the point that it starts feeling physical. Words or actions sometimes bruise us emotionally, but they end up feeling like being punched in the chest. “Needle and the thread, Gotta get you out of my head,” hits differently as the struggle in the song deepens. How was this boy just 16 and writing bops like these?
“… And You Thought They Wouldn’t Listen, It’s Like An Anthem That The Whole World’s Singin'”
We are Shawn, we are! Shawn wrote ‘Something Big’ on a tour bus with Ido Zmishlany and Scott Harris. The lyrics reflect the astounding success he had started receiving when he performed in front of thousands of fans, and all of them sang along with him like they knew every single word to the songs he wrote mere months before. And he was not even signed yet! The song, in general, also indicates good things can happen to anyone if they stay positive.
“Darling, I Want All The Strings Attached, I Love It When You Look At Me Like That”
‘Strings’ is reasonably our favorite track on the album, Handwritten. Shawn’s lyrical visualization of growing up with his person, ever since they were toddlers, and wanting to grow old with all the good and the bad that comes with them, is too endearing to sleep on. He knows he is “not the type of guy, to stick around,” but he is all prepared to do whatever it takes to make it work. Cue to go “Awwww!”
“One More Kiss Is All It Takes, I’ll Leave You With The Memory And The Aftertaste”
Shawn wrote ‘Aftertaste’ to paint the picture of the somewhat passionate yet angry feeling we get after a hurtful breakup, when we realize we don’t need the person anymore and we start getting over it. He did the song so much justice, and the lyrics speak for that already. It is a perfect climax to end the mini-series that follows a person during a breakup and the whole process of getting through it.
“I’m Having Trouble Sleeping On My Own, Feeling Like A House But Not A Home”
These lyrics from ‘Crazy’ are super honest and kind of empowering. The song validates the feeling of not being co-dependent and ignorant to love, while slowly transitioning into a realm of realizing quite the opposite. His voice puts more emotion behind all of the lyrics as he sings, and with the simplistic guitar in the background, this song shows off his impeccable vocal talent and unmatchable songwriting skills.
“She’s Slipping Away, Am I Just Hanging On To All The Words She Used To Say?”
Are we on the last lyric already? Closing our list for today is yet another Shawmila track we are utterly obsessed with. ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’ is a striking lyrical clash-conversation between two people who are romantically involved but have moved on or been unfaithful. As we all know, this collaboration was the beginning of a lot more beautiful beginnings for both of them, and we are not even complaining!
So there you have it, our favorite Shawn Mendes lyrics that are too good to be true! Long list, agreed. But as far as Shawn is concerned, we can go on and on, right?
We would like to hear from you! Do you agree with our list? Would you replace any lyrics up there? Let us know everything in the comments, or hit us up on Twitter @TheHoneyPOP!
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Featured Image Source: Glen Luchford