I'm Clifford Stumme, and I use literary analysis and research to explain the deeper meanings of pop songs. Feel free to leave a comment or to email me at with questions or ideas!

What does "Best Part of Me" by Ed Sheeran mean?

What does "Best Part of Me" by Ed Sheeran mean?

“Best Part of Me” Lyrics Meaning

Ed Sheeran’s “Best Part of Me” shows the point of view of two people in a romantic relationship, as each wonders why the other loves them with all their flaws. 

“Why the hell do you love me?” 

The song points out flaws that many people may see in themselves. It is not a dramatic song, and doesn’t choose dramatic flaws to explain why they feel unworthy of love. Instead, the simple, flaws of being chronically late or biting nails are sited as some of the reasons for their insecurity. From the outside, these habits seem trivial. That’s the point. While they may see their flaws as deal-breakers, they show each other how small they really are.

(Sidenote: Though elements of this song appear to be autobiographical on Ed Sheeran’s part, others have not been confirmed. To avoid confusion, in this analysis anything that Ed Sheeran sings will be analyzed as if it is about him (ex. “Ed Sheeran believes…” though portions of the lyrics could be dramatizations. In addition, the woman singing the other half this duet, YEBBA, sings the part of his partner. She is not his real life partner.)

Verse 1 [Ed Sheeran]

My lungs are black, my heart is pure

My hands are scarred from nights before

And my hair is thin and falling out of all the wrong places

I am a little insecure

My eyes are crossed, but they're still blue

I bite my nails and tell the truth

I go from thin to overweight day to day it fluctuates

My skin is inked, but faded, too

Sheeran sings about insecurity in himself as he describes his good and bad qualities. His “lungs are black” (presumably from smoking) but his “heart is pure.” He admits that he is “a little insecure” about himself, listing primarily physical attributes that he views as negative, and a few mostly internal positive traits. His weight “fluctuates” on a “day to day” basis and he believes his “hair is thin and falling out of all the wrong places” but he “tell[s] the truth.” The line “my hands are scarred from nights before” is significant because it is unfinished. The sentence most likely ends “before I met you” and shows that he sees his life has improved since he has begun a relationship with this person, in addition to illustrating that he sees his life as split into two parts: before her and after her.

Pre-Chorus [Ed Sheeran]

But she loves me, she loves me

Why the hell she love me

When she could have anyone else?

Oh, you love me, you love me

Why the hell do you love me?

'Cause I don't even love myself

He wonders why his partner loves him “when she could have anyone else.” To him, his flaws are overwhelming, and the idea that someone could love and choose him in spite of them is confusing to him when he doesn’t “even love [him]self.”

Chorus [Ed Sheeran & YEBBA]

'Cause, baby, the best part of me is you

Oh, lately, everything's making sense, too

Baby, I'm so in love with you

Still struggling to see himself in a positive, he tells his partner that “the best part of [him] is [her].” Her positive traits are so obvious to him that with this admission, he feels that “everything’s making sense” again.

Verse 2 [YEBBA]

I overthink and still forgive

I lose my phone and place my bets

And I never catch the train on time

Always 30 minutes behind

Your worries ain't seen nothin' yet

YEBBA sings from the perspective of his partner, listing her flaws (which, rather than being physical, are internal). She “overthink[s],” “lose[s] her belts and is ”always 30 minutes behind.” The negative traits she names are common, as are the ones Sheeran lists earlier for himself, and indicate that this song isn’t meant to be about serious flaws, but about overcoming our harsh views of ourselves by seeing ourselves through another’s eyes. 

Pre-Chorus [YEBBA]

But you love me, you love me

Why the hell you love me so

When you could have anyone else?

Yeah, yeah, he loves me, he loves me

And I bet he never lets me go

And shows me how to love myself

As Sheeran came to terms with earlier, YEBBA’s character  realizes that despite all of her flaws and bad habits, her partner still loves her. She adds that she trusts him to “never [let her] go” and believes he will show her “how to love [her]self.”

Deeper Meaning of “Best Part of Me” by Ed Sheeran (Feat. YEBBA)

“Best Part of Me” is a song that, in spirit, could apply to any type of relationship, even non-romantic ones. It’s about getting outside of ourselves and seeing who we are through the eyes of someone who has chosen to love us. It’s a good idea to listen to the good things people who care about us say and to believe them when they say they love us. Unfortunately, for most  people, it’s our natural tendency to judge ourselves harshly. An outside perspective can shift the way we perceive our qualities. We should be careful, however, that we don’t rely on the affirmation of another person for our self-worth. Even those who love us are human and will not always be able to say the right thing or make us feel loved every moment. Still, “Best Part of Me” is a reminder that we are own worst critics, and that when we are loved, we shouldn’t assume it’s because they don’t know us well enough yet. 

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