Expat life is easy in Spain. Who can argue with sunny coastal towns and bustling cities full of life and culture? But, to really immerse yourself into Spanish society, you’ll definitely need to learn some Spanish slang.
And, we’re not talking about the Spanish slang you likely learned in secondary school. We’re talking about the real kind of Spanish slang that you only learn if you hang around at a local tavern or have to share a room with a Spanish student. Yes, that kind of slang.
These go far beyond chulo and ole – here are ten important Spanish slang words and phrases you need to know in order to sound like a local.
Spanish Slang Words And Phrases
1. Que Chulo!
Okay, we said this would go past chulo, but it’s such a huge part of the Spanish vocabulary in Spain that we couldn’t leave it off this list. Que chulo means how cool! When something is really cool, interesting, fancy, or neat, you can use the phrase que chulo. You’re also likely to here que guay if you’re living in Madrid, which can sometimes be used to mean cool or good in Spanish slang, too.
2. Me Cago en La Leche
As Antonio Banderas once explained this one, the phrase, when literally translated, means to shit in the milk. We’re not quite sure how this one made its way to mean what it does in English now, but it means to feel disappointed about something, usually in yourself.
3. Eres La Leche!
It truly seems like the Spanish love milk, right? If someone says that you’re la leche, then it means you’re extremely cool. If you’re around lots of Spanish children for any period of time, you’ll likely hear them use this phrase a lot, usually when you give in to their antics (ie. when you cancel their homework they’ll all usually sigh in relief and remind you that eres la leche).
4. Me Importa Un Pimiento
This Spanish slang literally translates to mean that you don’t care a pepper. Weird, right? Basically you’re saying that you don’t care at all. Literally, you couldn’t care less if you tried. It’s a nicer way of saying than how we do in English, isn’t it?
5. Estoy Flipando
Flipando is the actual Spanish slang word that we’d like to address here, as it usually translates to mean that you’re extremely amazed at something. You might hear Spanish people say estoy flipando en colores, which is just a longer way of saying the same thing – that you’re so unbelievably amazed at what you’re seeing.
6. El Puto Amo
This one sounds a bit strong in Spanish, but in English it’s actually pretty cool. If you’re el puto amo, then it means that you own the place or that you’re a total boss at whatever you’re doing. Imagine dominating a presentation at work and closing a deal for half a million dollars. Your colleagues will likely call you el puto amo.
If something is really cool, then it’s mola. If you’re living with a Spanish student and he wants to show you a really cool new band, he might say that the band mola mucho, which just means it’s really cool. This is one of those Spanish slang words you can really use in a lot of different situations, so learn it well.
Not to be confused with mola, mono is a super Spanish word used to describe someone that’s cute. Every country has its own term, which makes it hard to learn how to say beautiful girl in Spanish slang (that’s why you’re reading this, isn’t it?). You’d usually use mono or mona to describe a cute little baby or a puppy. But, you could use it to describe how pretty or handsome someone is, too.
9. Ostia Tio!
The easiest way to translate the exclamation ostia tio is to compare it to the English phrase holy mother of god. It’s a phrase used to express a lot of surprise, but it’s so common nowadays that you might hear someone use it for something super basic. If you come home early and surprise your roommate, they might exclaim ostia, tio!
You probably don’t need a Spanish slang translator to figure out the meaning of joder in Spain. You’ll hear it pretty much anywhere, and although it can be pretty vulgar, it doesn’t always have to be. You might hear it used as something similar to oh my god, what the hell, I can’t believe it, or any similar expression.