Spanish Slang

Spanish Slang Words & Phrases

See also Mexican Slang, Slang in Argentina, Spanish Insults

Slang is the use of informal words and phrases that aren’t part of the formal language. This includes many swears and insults.

Most Spanish courses don’t teach slang and many dictionaries don’t define slang words and expressions. Nonetheless, slang is commonly used in conversation and is a colorful and fun part of language learning.

On this page I’ve summarized a few common slang expressions I’ve encountered in Mexico and Argentina. This is not an exhaustive list of every Spanish slang term, but rather a selection of a few of my favorites.

Spanish slang is highly regional. It is not universal. Expressions used in Mexico, for example, may not be used or even understood in Spain, Argentina or other Latin countries.

Slang in any language is also age-dependent. Older people generally use different slang than teenagers.

Popular Slang Expressions

bárbaro (Argentina) – awesome, fantastic

Example:
¡Que bárbaro!
That’s awesome!

boludo (Argentina) – jerk, idiot. taxi drivers yell this often. also used to address friends and buddies

cabrón (Mexico) – jerk, bastard

che (Argentina) – hey, yo. dude, man. often used to get someone’s attention

cornudo (Argentina) – a man whose wife is cheating on him. another favorite insult of taxi drivers

culo – butt, ass

Example:
Ella tiene un magnífico culo.
She has a great ass.

lana (Mexico) – money. literally means wool

mina (Argentina) – girl, woman, babe

pajero – person who masturbates

pendejo (Mexico) – jerk, idiot

Example:
Ese pendejo no sirve para nada.
That jerk is totally useless.

plata – money

puta – slut, whore

tipo (Mexico) – guy

Example:
Ese tipo es el novio de mi hermana.
That guy is my sister’s boyfriend.

More Spanish Slang, Swear Words, Curses and Insults

To learn more Spanish slang, including how to swear in Spanish, see the sites below.

Language Realm Spanish Slang Dictionary – Dictionary of slang, vulgarisms, curses and insults

Argentine Spanish Slang Dictionary at Oh Buenos Aires – Excellent list of Argentina slang with clear definitions

Insults.net – Good collection of Spanish insults and dirty words

The Alternative Spanish Dictionary – More slang and swear words to enrich your vocabulary

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Author: Cacho

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