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About Mae West



Mae West (1893 – 1980) was an American actress, singer, playwright, screenwriter, comedian, and sex symbol whose entertainment career spanned seven decades. She was known for her lighthearted, bawdy double entendres and breezy sexual independence, and often used a husky contralto voice. Wikipedia

References:   Encyclopaedia Britannica   |   Biography.com

  

Quotes by Mae West

Mae West (quotes)

  • Sex is emotion in motion.
  • A man’s kiss is his signature.
  • I’m a good woman for a bad man.
  • Flattery will get you everywhere.
  • I’ve been things and seen places.
  • I like a man what takes his time.
  • He who hesitates is a damned fool.
  • Never ask a man where he has been.
  • It takes two to get one in trouble.
  • I’d like to see Paris before I die.
  • To err is human, but it feels divine.
  • I’ve been in more laps than a napkin.
  • I’ve been things and I’ve seen places.
  • Brains are an asset, if you hide them.
  • … love is banality to all outsiders.
  • Men are not realists – only women are.
  • Well behaved women do not make history.
  • I used to be Snow White, but I drifted.
  • The best way to behave is to misbehave.
  • I’m single because I was born that way.
  • You are never too old to become younger!
  • Look your best – who said love is blind?
  • I speak two languages, Body and English.
  • Men are my life, diamonds are my career.
  • Too much of a good thing can be wonderful.
  • The curve is more powerful than the sword.
  • One more drink and I’ll be under the host.
  • It’s not what you say, but how you say it!
  • Anything worth doing is worth doing slowly.
  • The best way to hold a man is in your arms.
  • Some of the wildest men make the best pets.
  • I like restraint, if it doesn’t go too far.
  • I don’t like myself, I’m crazy about myself.
  • The score never interested me, only the game.
  • I’m no angel, but I’ve spread my wings a bit.
  • When women go wrong, men go right after them.
  • A man in the house is worth two in the street.
  • The finest woman that ever walked the streets.
  • It is better to be looked over than overlooked.
  • It’s hard to be funny when you have to be clean.
  • I didn’t discover curves; I only uncovered them.
  • I started out as Snow White, but then I drifted.
  • I’ve always had a weakness for foreign affairs.
  • Curve: The loveliest distance between two points.
  • Love is what you make it and who you make it with.
  • I’m a woman of very few words, but lots of action.
  • Love isn’t an emotion or an instinct – it’s an art.
  • An ounce of performance is worth pounds of promises.
  • I only like two kinds of men, domestic and imported.
  • I only have ‘yes’ men around me. Who needs ‘no’ men?
  • I believe in censorship. I made a fortune out of it.
  • It’s easy to get married, but hard to stay that way.
  • I never loved another person the way I loved myself.
  • Give a man a free hand and he’ll run it all over you.
  • I generally avoid temptation unless I can’t resist it.
  • Love conquers all things except poverty and toothache.
  • Don’t ever make the same mistake twice unless it pays.
  • I made myself platinum, but I was born a dirty blonde.
  • I always say, keep a diary and someday it’ll keep you.
  • I believe in the single standard — for men and women.
  • Diamonds talk, and I can stand listenin’ to ’em often.
  • I have never loved a man as much as I have loved myself
  • He’s the kind of man who picks his friends – to pieces.
  • When you get the personality, you don’t need the nudity.
  • I know so much about men because I went to night school.
  • The bite of existence did not cut into one in Hollywood.
  • If you put your foot in it, be sure it’s your best foot.
  • A dame that knows the ropes isn’t likely to get tied up.
  • Virtue has its own reward, but no sale at the box office.
  • Good theater is not what is expected, but what surprises.
  • When I’m good, I’m very good. But when I’m bad I’m better.
  • His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork.
  • Give a man free hands, and you’ll know where to find them.
  • Those who are easily shocked should be shocked more often.
  • Let’s get out of these wet clothes and into a dry Martini.
  • Just a little sheep dip. Panacea for all stomach ailments.
  • A girl in the convertible is worth five in the phone book.
  • You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
  • It’s not what you can do, but the way you do it that counts.
  • Why don’t you come up and have a little … scotch and sofa?
  • Don’t let a man put anything over on you except an umbrella.
  • Dating means two things; disillusionment or a racing heart.
  • Kiss and make up-but too much makeup has ruined many a kiss.
  • Some women pick men to marry–and others pick them to pieces.
  • Is that a gun in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?
  • Between two evils, I always pick the one I never tried before.
  • There are no good girls gone wrong – just bad girls found out.
  • Men are all alike – except the one you’ve met who’s different.
  • A man in love is like a clipped coupon – it’s time to cash in.
  • I consider sex a misdemeanor, the more I miss, de meaner I get.
  • It’s hard to find a good man, but it’s good to find a hard one.
  • Men are my hobby, if I ever got married I’d have to give it up.
  • He’s the kind of man a woman would have to marry to get rid of.
  • I never said it would be easy, I only said it would be worth it.
  • It’s not the men in my life that count, it’s the life in my men.
  • A good man is hard to find — but you’ll mostly find him asleep.
  • I never set out to make men a career; it just happened that way.
  • Personality is the most important thing to an actress’s success.
  • I’m the girl that works at Paramount all day, and Fox all night.
  • Never mind about the six feet. Let’s talk about the seven inches.
  • Love is the only industry which can’t operate on a five-day week.
  • I’m no model lady. A model’s just an imitation of the real thing.
  • Women like a man with a past, but they prefer a man with a present
  • Sometimes I don’t drink so the next day I can remember having fun.
  • Every man I meet wants to protect me. I can’t figure out what from.
  • The best way to learn to be a lady is to see how other ladies do it.
  • I’ll try anything once, twice if I like it, three times to make sure.
  • Ten men waiting for me at the door? Send one of them home, I’m tired.
  • March isn’t the only thing that’s in like a lion and out like a lamb.
  • Don’t marry a man to reform him – that’s what reform schools are for.
  • You can do what you want, but saving love doesn’t bring any interest.
  • Life’s just a merry-go-round. Come on up. You might get a brass ring.
  • Hollywood was like a mouse being followed by a cat called television.
  • Marriage is a great institution, but I’m not ready for an institution.
  • Ladies who play with fire must remember that smoke gets in their eyes.
  • No one can have everything, so you have to try for what you want most.
  • Opportunity knocks for every man, but you have to give a woman a ring.
  • I go for two kinds of men. The kind with muscles, and the kind without.
  • Poor Mary Ann! She gave the guy an inch and now he thinks he’s a ruler.
  • Save a boyfriend for a rainy day – and another, in case it doesn’t rain.
  • Cultivate your curves – they may be dangerous but they won’t be avoided.
  • She’s the kind of girl who climbed the ladder of success wrong by wrong.
  • Brains are an asset to the woman in love who’s smart enough to hide ’em.
  • Any time you got nothing to do – and lots of time to do it – come on up.
  • Marriage is like a book. The whole story takes place between the covers.
  • We’re intellectual opposites. Well, I’m intellectual and you’re opposite.
  • Goodness, what beautiful diamonds!’ ‘Goodness had nothing to do with it’.
  • A woman in love can’t be reasonable – or she probably wouldn’t be in love.
  • Don’t cry for a man who’s left you–the next one may fall for your smile.
  • Don’t come crawlin’ to a man for love-he likes to get a run for his money.
  • Women with pasts interest men because they hope history will repeat itself.
  • Women are as old as they feel and men are old when they lose their feelings.
  • If I asked for a cup of coffee, someone would search for the double meaning.
  • Let men see what’s coming to them, and women will get what’s coming to them.
  • Women are like roads. The more curves they have, the more dangerous they are.
  • All discarded lovers should be given a second chance, but with somebody else.
  • I enjoyed the courtroom as just another stage but not so amusing as Broadway.
  • I see you’re a man with ideals. I better be going before you’ve still got them.
  • It’s all right for a perfect stranger to kiss your hand as long as he’s perfect.
  • Getting married is like trading in the adoration of many for the sarcasm of one.
  • A real farmer. He spent his childhood in the wheat, and his marriage in the hay.
  • In my long and colorful career, one thing stands out: I have been misunderstood.
  • Don’t keep a man guessing too long – he’s sure to find the answer somewhere else.
  • If a little is great, and a lot is better, then way too much is just about right!
  • Words should be used as tools of communication and not as a substitute for action
  • No gold-digging for me; I take diamonds! We may be off the gold standard someday.
  • You can say what you like about long dresses, but they cover a multitude of shins.
  • I have found men who didn’t know how to kiss. I’ve always found time to teach them.
  • I only read biographies, metaphysics and psychology. I can dream up my own fiction.
  • Men are like linoleum floors. Lay ’em right and you can walk all over them for years.
  • A man has one hundred dollars and you leave him with two dollars, that’s subtraction.
  • A man can be short and dumpy and getting bald but if he has fire, women will like him.
  • I have always felt a gift diamond shines so much better than one you buy for yourself.
  • A man has more character in his face at forty than at twenty – he has suffered longer.
  • Too many girls follow the line of least resistance, but a good line is hard to resist.
  • I don’t know a lot about politics, but I can recognise a good party man when I see one.
  • I like my clothes tight enough to show I’m a woman, but loose enough to show I’m a lady.
  • I’ve always taken men just as I found ’em, and thank heavens I’ve been able to find ’em.
  • Hiring someone to write your autobiography is like hiring someone to take a bath for you
  • Don’t forget honey. Never let one man worry your mind. Find ’em, fool ’em and forget ’em.
  • All the raves were just words. You don’t want to let words confuse you. Words come cheap.
  • I like a man who’s good, but not too good – for the good die young, and I hate a dead one.
  • It ain’t no sin if you crack a few laws now and then, just so long as you don’t break any.
  • Ya know it was a toss-up whether I go in for diamonds or sing in the choir. The choir lost.
  • I wrote the story myself. It’s all about a girl who lost her reputation but never missed it.
  • Sex with love is the greatest thing in life. But sex without love–that’s not so bad either.
  • When it comes to finances, remember that there are no withholding taxes on the wages of sin.
  • Always remember honey. A good motto is: Take all you can get and give as little as possible.
  • When you think about it, what other playwrights are there besides O’Neill, Tennessee and me?
  • You gotta get up early in the morning to catch a fox and stay up late at night to get a mink.
  • Men would wither and custom stale them, but diamonds! Ah, they were crystallized immortality!
  • I meet a man with a thousand dollars and leave him with two; that’s the meaning of subtraction.
  • Imagine censors that wouldn’t let you sit in a man’s lap. I’ve been in more laps than a napkin!
  • One and one is two, and two and two is four, and five will get you ten if you know how to work it.
  • Women want certain things in marriage–the right to a title and a front seat in the lap of luxury.
  • I never worry about diets. The only carrots that interest me are the number of carats in a diamond.
  • Your real security is yourself. You know you can do it, and they can’t ever take that away from you.
  • The censors wouldn’t even let me sit on a guy’s lap, and I’ve been on more laps than a table-napkin.
  • Girls, give all your gentlemen friends an even break, even if you have to break them in the attempt.
  • For a long time I was ashamed of the way I lived. Did I reform, you ask? No. I’m not ashamed anymore.
  • Love is like a booger, you pick and pick at it. Then when you get it you wonder how to get rid of it.
  • You may admire a girl’s curves on the first introduction, but the second meeting shows up new angles.
  • How tall are you big boy? Six foot nine inches! Let’s go up to my place and talk about the nine inches!
  • Love thy neighbor – and if he happens to be tall, debonair and devastating, it will be that much easier.
  • I’ve been in ‘Who’s Who’ and I know what’s what, but it’ll be the first time I ever made the dictionary.
  • I always did like a man in uniform. And that one fits you grand. Why don’t you come up sometime and see me?
  • Reason was nowhere, time was an immovable object nailed high on the wall, except where the world kept shop.
  • Well, the end of another busy day. I can’t wait till I get back to bed. If that don’t work I’ll try to sleep.
  • Sometimes it seems to me I’ve known so many men that the FBI ought to come to me first to compare fingerprints.
  • Everything’s in the mind. That’s where it all starts. Knowing what you want is the first step toward getting it.
  • Marriage? I ain’t got time for a husband or child. All my life I’ve looked after myself as if I was my own child.
  • Everyone has the right to run his own life- even if you’re heading for a crash. What I’m against is blind flying.
  • It isn’t what I do, but how I do it. It isn’t what I say, but how I say it, and how I look when I do it and say it.
  • Money is of value for what it buys, and in love it buys time, place, intimacy, comfort, and a private corner alone.
  • Good women are no fun… The only good woman I can recall in history was Betsy Ross. And all she ever made was a flag.
  • I’ve no time for broads who want to rule the world alone. Without men, who’d do up the zipper on the back of your dress?
  • Why don’t you come up sometime ‘n see me? I’m home every evening. . . . Come up. I’ll tell your fortune. . . . Ah, you can be had.
  • Dress gives one the outward sign from which people in general can, and often do, judge upon the inward state of mind and feelings.
  • all pleasures should be taken in great leisure and are worth going into in detail; love is not like eating a quick lunch with one’s hat on.
  • what’s life good fer anyhow? The minute you crawl into the world for no good reason of yer own, it’s got you licked four ways from the ace.
  • Dates in Calendar are Closer Than They Appear! Time is what keeps everything from happening at once. Keep a diary, and someday it’ll keep you.
  • Positive thoughts generate positive feelings and attract positive life experiences. You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.
  • Personality is the glitter that sends your little gleam across the footlights and the orchestra pit into that big black space where the audience is.
  • I believe that one day the world will judge the witch hunt against homosexuals just as harshly as it judges the Spanish Inquisition and the Holocaust.
  • The bite of existence did not cut into one in Hollywood … Life elsewhere was real and slippery and struggled in the arms like a big fish dying in air.
  • [On the metaphysical:] … I knew in some marvelous way I had touched the hem of the unknown. And being me, I wanted to lift that hemline a little bit more.
  • I never needed Panavision and stereophonic sound to woo the world. I did it in black and white on a screen the size of a postage stamp. Honey, that’s talent.
  • I freely chose the kind of life I led because I was convinced that a woman has as much right as a man to live the way she does if she does no actual harm to society.
  • You may think you’re in love when the passions of sex get hold of you, but if you didn’t love the man before, you won’t love him after. Like him, maybe, but not love him.
  • Never ask a man where’s he’s been. If he’s out on legitimate business, he doesn’t need an alibi. And, girls, if he has been out on illegitimate business, it’s your own fault.
  • I have never been able to sleep with anyone. I require a full-size bed so that I can lie in the middle of it and extend my arms spreadeagle on both sides without being obstructed.
  • Dennis Thatcher, husband of Margaret Thatcher, when asked who wore the pants in his house, said “I do, and I also wash and iron them.” I only like two kinds of men; domestic and foreign.
  • Right now I think censorship is necessary; the things they’re doing and saying in films right now just shouldn’t be allowed. There’s no dignity anymore and I think that’s very important.
  • My advice to those who think they have to take off their clothes to be a star is, once you’re boned, what’s left to create the illusion? Let em wonder. I never believed in giving them too much of me.
  • Tira begins to sing “I’m No Angel” to him as the screen fades: Baby, I can warm you with this love of mine. I’m No Angel. Aw, let me feel my fingers running through your hair, I can give you kisses. . . .
  • Is that a pistol in your pocket or are you just glad to see me? (She made this remark in February 1936, at the railway station in Los Angeles upon her return from Chicago, when a Los Angeles police officer was assigned to escort her home)
  • Men? Sure, I’ve known lots of them. But I never found one I liked well enough to marry. Besides, I’ve always been busy with my work. Marriage is a career in itself and to make a success of it you’ve got to keep working at it. So until I can give the.
  • I saw what a mess a lot of people could make of their lives when they’re smitten. Some of them go temporarily insane. They find a person who they think holds the key to their happiness-the only key to their happiness… My work has always been my greatest happiness
  • More people saw me than saw Napoleon, Lincoln and Cleopatra. I was better known than Einstein and Picasso. … I changed the fashion of two continents. The style of the Gay Nineties became the rage … women were trying to walk and talk like me. Women became more sex-conscious – sex was out in the open and fun.
  • Too many Broadway actors in motion pictures lost their grip on success–had a feeling that none of it had ever happened on that sun-drenched coast, that the coast itself did not exist, there was no California. It had dropped away like a hasty dream and nothing could ever have been like the things they thought they remembered.
  • Tira: Whatever you’re thinkin’ you’re wrong. I only like him like a brother. You ain’t got nothin’ to worry about. . . . Say listen you. A better dame than you once called me a liar and they had to sew her up in twelve different places. You’re lucky I’m a little more refined than I used to be. And if you was as much a lady as I am, you’d get out of here before I get real sore. Alicia: You haven’t a streak of decency in you. Tira: I don’t show my good points to strangers. I’ll trouble you to scram.