As well as being a typical word used of girls, 'cute' is also a typical word used by girls.
If a guy tells a girl she's cute, yes, it's more like hübsch, goldig, schnuckelig, niedlich, süß usw. (-aussehend). There's often a slightly patronizing note, as if the girl were younger, weaker, or more like a doll, toy, or baby.
But if a girl tells a guy he's cute, it can mean just 'Du siehst aber gut aus / Du bist gutaussehend.' A loose synonym would be 'attractive,' referring more to the face than the whole body. Not necessarily childlike, just engaging or appealing.
In both cases, it's more a word used by and of young people. People in their 50s going out on a date would probably not call each other cute, unless they did something funny and a little childish.