33 Funny, Sweet, and Sentimental Things to Write in a Birthday Card

Personalized birthday messages add a thoughtful touch to any plain card. If you're not sure what to write, these sayings can help you get started.

It can be hard enough to find the perfect birthday gift, but even after you've wrapped the package and topped it with a gorgeous bow, you're not done yet. My favorite part of gift-giving is selecting a card and writing a clever or heartfelt message inside. If you're looking for cards to send, this 20-mixed pack of cards ($8, Amazon) means you'll always have a card on hand when birthdays sneak up on you. Or, use Minted's greeting card subscription service to choose individual cards for each person (they'll also send you reminders to make sure you never miss a birthday again!). Of course, you can always make your card, too. But picking out the card is never as hard as deciding what to write in it—so if you're wondering what to write in a birthday card, we've got you covered.

Try one of these sweet sentimental messages or jot down a funny birthday quote on your card. Of course, you can also borrow an inspirational quote from a public figure. It's not so much about what you write as it is about sharing how you feel. These funny, sweet, and sentimental messages will help you get started.

black text on a blue and white background that says whishing you a birthday filled with happiness and a year filled with joy

What to Write In a Birthday Card

Once you've picked out the perfect card (or made your own!), it can be hard to come up with something to say beyond the basic "happy birthday." And what to say depends on the recipient, too: What to write in a birthday card for a friend ($4, Target) is probably a bit different than what you'll choose to say to Mom. Pick one of these sweet messages that fit the birthday gal or guy, or use them to inspire your heartfelt note.

  • Wishing you a birthday filled with happiness and a year filled with joy.
  • I hope your birthday celebration is as special as you are.
  • Thank you for being such a good friend. Happy birthday!
  • Warmest wishes for a happy birthday!
  • May this year be filled with sweet memories. Happy birthday!
  • Your friendship means the world to me. Happy birthday!
  • I wish I could be there to celebrate with you in person. Have a fun day!
  • A special day for a special person. Looking forward to celebrating with you!
  • I am more and more grateful for you every year. Happy birthday!
black text that says and in the end, it's not the years in your life that count, it's the life in your years on a pink striped background

Birthday Quotes

If you can't put into words what you want to say, let someone else do it for you! Including a sweet or funny birthday quote is an easy way to fill out a birthday card without the stress of trying to come up with something to say. Use a celebrity birthday quote for a friend, or go old-school with a traditional proverb or blessing in your birthday card for mom ($7, Amazon).

  • "And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." - Abraham Lincoln
  • "Let us celebrate the occasion with wine and sweet words." - Plautus
  • "Every birthday is a gift. Every day is a gift." - Aretha Franklin
  • "The older the fiddler, the sweeter the tune." - English Proverb
  • "The older you get the better you get, unless you are a banana." - Betty White
  • "We turn not older with years, but newer every day." - Emily Dickinson
  • "Old age is like everything else. To make a success of it, you've got to start young." - Fred Astaire
  • "It takes a long time to become young." - Pablo Picasso
  • "May you live as long as you want and never want as long as you live." - Irish Blessing
  • "Today you are you! That is truer than true! There is no one alive who is you-er than you!" - Dr. Seuss
  • "The secret to staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age." - Lucille Ball
  • "Age is a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter." - Mark Twain
black text that says what do you always get on your birthday, another year older on a blue background

Funny Birthday Jokes to Write In a Card

Whether these funny birthday jokes make you laugh or groan, they're sure to make your recipient smile. Go with a good pun for a birthday dad joke he'll love, or opt for one of these short and simple birthday jokes for kids. Try one of the funny messages below, or get inspired to try your hand at something new for a kids birthday card ($7 for a 12-pack, Amazon).

  • Q: What do you always get on your birthday? A: Another year older!
  • Q: What do monsters serve at their birthday parties? A: I scream cake.
  • Q: Why did Susan stand on her head at the birthday party? A: They were having an upside-down cake!
  • Q: Did you hear about the tree's birthday? A: It was a sappy one!
  • Q: What did the ice cream say to the unhappy cake? A: "Hey, what's eating you?"
  • Q: Why do we put candles on top of a birthday cake? A: Because it's too hard to put them on the bottom!
  • Q: What does a clam do on his birthday? A: He shellabrates!
  • Q: How can you tell if a birthday cake is sad? A: If it's in tiers.
  • Q: What is an elf's favorite kind of birthday cake? A: Shortcake!
  • Q: What party game do rabbits like to play? A: Musical Hares.
  • Q: Why did Tommy hit his birthday cake with a hammer? A: It was a pound cake!
  • Q: What did the birthday cake say to the ice cream? A: You're cool!
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