• Seinen romances explore complex ideas with a mature tone, appealing to an older audience.
  • My Dress-Up Darling is a wholesome romantic comedy focused on cosplaying.
  • Kaguya-sama: Love Is War is a popular romantic comedy with hilarious antics and heartwarming romance.

Romance manga can often be a rather mixed bag. Some rom-coms are mostly silly hijinks between romantic leads, serious dramas where every chapter is rife with misunderstandings and melodramatic emotions, or harem stories that are filled with fanservice from top to bottom.

Seinen romances, while frequently featuring similar kinds of stories as shonen stories, tend to be more mature due to the nature of their older audience, giving them more freedom to explore complex ideas. Here are some of the best seinen romance manga, ranked by their MyAnimeList score.

10 SaiKano

MAL Score: 7.90

  • Serialized from 1999 to 2001
  • Written and illustrated by Shin Takahashi
  • 7 volumes

An abbreviation of Saishuu Heiki Kanojo, SaiKano tells the story of Shuji and Chise, two high school students who are newly dating. While Shuji struggles with being inexperienced and clueless when it comes to romance, he also has to deal with the fact that his girlfriend is actually a cyborg weapon used for war.

SaiKano is a romance story while also being a sort of science fiction war drama. The relationship between Shuji and Chise is as important as the world-ending conflicts going around them, and the two stories are inexplicably intertwined.

9 My Dress-Up Darling

MAL Score: 8.00

  • Serialized since 2018
  • Written and illustrated by Shinichi Fukuda
  • 12 volumes

Wakana Gojo is a quiet and unassuming young man who is immersed in the world of traditional doll-making. Scarred by rejection in the past, Gojo keeps his odd hobby to himself until he is suddenly found sewing by Marin Kitagawa, who immediately begs him to help him make her cosplays.

My Dress-Up Darling is a romantic comedy focused on the world of cosplaying, both making them and wearing them. At the same time, it's also a refreshingly wholesome romance where Gojo learns to be more confident in what he enjoys.

8 The Kawai Complex Guide To Manors And Hostel Behaviors

MAL Score: 8.13

  • Serialized from 2010 to 2017
  • Written and illustrated by Ruri Miyahara
  • 11 volumes

Kazunari Usa moves into the Kawai Complex to be more independent and live away from his parents. However, his dream life is ruined by the bizarre and overbearing residents of the complex, who all badger him relentlessly with selfish requests and bothersome demands. His only saving grace is the presence of Ritsu Kawai, a quiet, book-loving girl he has fallen in love with.

The Kawai Complex Guide to Manors and Hostel Behaviors is a hilarious rom-com where the humor comes from watching these ridiculous characters interact with each other. At the same time, there's an incredibly wholesome relationship building between Kazunari and Ritsu, one that is slow but certainly steady.

7 Emma

MAL Score: 8.15

  • Serialized from 2002 to 2008
  • Written and illustrated by Kaoru Mori
  • 10 volumes

Emma is a young woman who came to work as a maid under Kelly Stownar, and then later as a maid for the Molders. While working as a maid, she falls in love with William Jones, the son of a wealthy merchant family. William returns her feelings, but in a time where class is everything, there are many roadblocks to their love bearing fruit.

Emma is a historical manga taking place in Victorian London and features a classic story of love crossing over classes. The attention to detail is astounding, and the love story being told is both wholesome and heart-wrenching at the same time.

6 Sweat And Soap

MAL Score: 8.16

  • Serialized from 2018 to 2021
  • Written and illustrated by Kintetsu Yamada
  • 11 volumes

Asako Yaeshima is a slightly plain woman working at a cosmetics company who tends to sweat more than the average person. She tries to hide the scent of her sweat with her company's fragrances, but instead of masking her scent, she ends up drawing the attention of Kotaro Natori, a fragrance developer with a keen sense of smell.

Sweat and Soap is a slightly unconventional romance manga that revolves around smells and scents. However, underneath that is a very wholesome relationship between Natori and Asako, and while there is a bit of drama, it's a largely light-hearted love story.

5 Maison Ikkoku

MAL Score: 8.16

  • Serialized from 1980 to 1987
  • Written and illustrated by Rumiko Takahashi
  • 15 volumes

Yusaku Godai has been trying to get into college after failing multiple times. His studying time is constantly interrupted by his rowdy and rambunctious neighbors, who constantly drag him into drinking parties regardless of his wishes. Fed up, he declares his intent to move out - but when he meets the new manager, Kyoko Otonashi, he suddenly decides to stay after all.

Maison Ikkoku is yet another romantic comedy by the legendary Rumiko Takahashi. However, it's quite different from her usual works, being a much more grounded romance that features more mature characters and plotlines.

4 Your Name

MAL Score: 8.39

  • Serialized from 2016 to 2017
  • Written by Makoto Shinkai; Illustrated by Kotone Ranmaru
  • 3 volumes

Mitsuha Miyamizu lives in the countryside dreaming of a life in the city, while Taki Tachibana is a city boy planning a career in architecture. One day, the two discover that whenever they fall asleep, they find themselves in each other's bodies, living their lives.

Your Name was an incredibly popular movie by Makoto Shinkai, and its manga adaptation is no less enjoyable. While it might not be better than the movie, it's a decent read for anyone who is a fan.

3 Insomniacs After School

MAL Score: 8.46

  • Serialized from 2019 to 2023
  • Written and illustrated by Makoto Ojiro
  • 14 volumes

Ganta Nakami is known for being a grumpy and unfriendly high school boy. Unbeknownst to most others, Ganta's grumpiness comes from his insomnia, which keeps him from getting a good night's sleep. His life changes when he meets the freewheeling Isaki Magari, who, to his surprise, also suffers from insomnia.

Insomniacs After School is a cozy and slow-moving romance story between two characters struggling to get over their insomnia. There's a lot of personal introspection alongside the growing relationship between the two leads, and their personal growth is as big a part of the story as their romance.

2 A Bride's Story

MAL Score: 8.56

  • Serialized since 2008
  • Written and illustrated by Kaoru Mori
  • 14 volumes

As a sort of political marriage between clans, Amir Halgal is married to Karluk Eihon, a boy eight years her junior. Despite being separated from her family, Amir makes the best of her new life, making connections with her new family and friends.

A Bride's Story is a historical romance manga set in the Middle East during the 19th century, featuring fantastic artwork and blistering detail. The series covers the stories of several brides living in different locations within the area, covering it very much like a historical documentary.

1 Kaguya-sama: Love Is War

MAL Score: 8.91

  • Serialized from 2015 to 2022
  • Written and illustrated by Aka Akasaka
  • 28 volumes

Kaguya Shinomiya is the Student Council vice president of Shuchiin High School, an institution attended by the richest and most powerful children in Japan. She is in love with the Student Council president, Miyuki Shirogane, but refuses to confess herself. Little does she know that Shirogane is thinking the same thing as the two desperately attempt to get the other to confess first.

Kaguya-sama: Love Is War is probably one of the most popular romantic comedies around, and the manga is no different. The hilarious antics the two get up to as they try to catch the other slipping is iconic, yet the romance between the two can also be incredibly heartwarming.