What does How to Be a Heartbreaker mean?

Marina and the Diamonds: How to Be a Heartbreaker Meaning

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Album cover for How to Be a Heartbreaker album cover

Song Released: 2012


Covered By: Glee Cast


How to Be a Heartbreaker Lyrics

[Verse 1]
Rule number one, is that you gotta have fun,
But baby when you're done, you gotta be the first to run
Rule number two, just don't get attached to,
Somebody you could lose
So le-let me tell...

  1. 1TOP RATED

    #1 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
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    Feb 28th 2018 !⃝

    How To Be A Heartbreaker's lyrics are supposed to be about the roles and methods used for how to use someone and then leave them. This is actually a character that Marina is portraying ("Electra Heart") and is one of the four archetypes on the album.

    It looks like a superficial song at first glance, but when you actually listen to it, she's really talking about protecting herself from having her heart shattered. The song is from the point of view of a girl who fell in love with someone and got her heart broken, possibly multiple times -- she still wants to feel loved and needs that connection with someone, but has reinforced the idea that it is better to be fake for this love and attention than risk developing a true attachment and being hurt again.

    "Rule number one, is that you gotta have fun. But baby, when you're done, you gotta be the first to run."

    You have to have fun with someone -- have a good time and make sure they're having a good time with you, but make sure it doesn't go further than that. When it stops being just fun and games and starts becoming more serious, you have to make sure *you're* the first to run so that they can't break your heart.

    "Rule number two, just don't get attached to somebody you could lose."

    You can always lose someone; emotions are fleeting, and it's dangerous to let yourself get attached to anyone. If you develop an attachment, it means that when they leave, you're going to get hurt.

    "So let me tell you: this is how to be a heartbreaker. Boys, they like a little danger. We'll get him falling for a stranger, a player, singing, 'I lo-lo-love you'"

    The chorus seems to be literal rules for how to be a heartbreaker -- how to manipulate boys into liking you. She states that boys like a little (or the look of, as said later in the chorus) danger, so you need to seem ambiguous, mysterious, and dangerous. If you follow what she says, they'll fall for you (a stranger, a player) and tell you that they love you.

    "Rule number three: wear your heart on your cheek, but never on your sleeve, unless you wanna taste defeat. Rule number four: gotta be looking pure; kiss him goodbye at the door, and leave him wanting more, more."

    In this case, "defeat" seems to be falling in love for real. You don't want to wear your heart on your sleeve and let yourself be open; rather, wear your heart on your cheek (this could possibly be an allusion to cheek kisses?) You also have to "look pure" -- you don't want him to suspect anything so you must appear innocent. Kissing him goodbye at the door also implies that you're pure sexually, and if a guy wants something more from you, he's going to have to keep seeing you.

    "Girls, we do whatever it will take cause girls don't want -- we don't want our hearts to break in two, so it's better to be fake. Can't risk losing in love again, babe."

    The final verse discusses how no girl wants their heart broken; no one wants to suffer the pain of loving someone and losing them. To prevent this, girls do whatever it takes to stop themselves from becoming attached and letting this happen. Marina acknowledges that it's better to be fake -- it's better to present yourself as a player and gain love that way than to truly fall in love and lose again.

    This song is quite a bit deeper than it appears. Through the character Electra Heart, Marina expresses the outlook of a girl who still desperately wants and needs to feel loved, but can't bear the pain of letting herself love and becoming heartbroken again and again.

  2. 2TOP RATED

    #2 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    May 19th 2013 !⃝

    On the first impression, it's about how to not get your own heart broken.

    On deeper inspection, you realize it's actually about how a woman has been hurt so many times, she's come to the conclusion that it's better to be fake than to risk it all on a relationship based on actual emotion.

  3. 3TOP RATED

    #3 top rated interpretation:
    anonymous
    click a star to vote
    Mar 4th 2013 !⃝

    yeah it's pretty much rules on how not to get your heart broken, and it's all about being a fake to protect the real you.

  4. anonymous
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    May 19th 2020 !⃝

    honestly guys don't care about girls they only act like it cuz they want someone to do things in bed with because they horny and

  5. anonymous
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    Oct 20th 2017 !⃝

    Marina and the Heart breakers had written this song to show that boys can cheat on girls all of the time technically being called what most people call a "player" this song shows that girls can do that type of thing too, even though girls point boys out for that type of thing.

  6. anonymous
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    Jul 4th 2015 !⃝

    It is deeper than just rules to protect your heart. Marina doesn't just write songs without meaning, it is about, to be careful and listen to your gut when it says he is no good, its states like ^^ all you have said; how to not have your heartbroken. <3

  7. anonymous
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    Feb 13th 2015 !⃝

    It's about how to not get your heart broken. We have to be fake to protect ourselves from really being hurt.

  8. anonymous
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    Apr 1st 2013 !⃝

    This song basically tells you about how to be careful around boys, cuz they can hurt you if you are not careful.

  9. anonymous
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    Feb 27th 2013 !⃝

    This is basically a guide how to not get your heart broken as a girl. You have to be fake to protect the real you.


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