Understanding Mexican Slang – Your Guide to Speaking Like a Local

Mexican slang 1 Spanish

Hey there, amigos! Are you ready to spice up your Spanish game? In this article, we’re diving into the colorful world of Mexican slang. From “chido” to “chamba,” we’ve got you covered on all the slang terms you need to know to sound like a true Mexican. So grab your sombrero and let’s get started!

Mexican slang

The TOP-2 interesting Facts about Mexico

Mexican slang is now found all over the world. These are facts about Mexico that will surprise you. 

  1. Pronunciation and spelling of J in Mexico. Previously, the sound “X” was indicated only by the letter J, not by X. In 1815, the Spanish Academy of Calligraphy (RAE) decided that all the words previously spelled with X and in which the sound J was heard would now be spelled with J. This was when Mexico changed from “Méjico” to “México”. Both forms are currently correct, but the second form is recommended, as on all official documents.
  2. In Mexico, there is a cult of the Holy Death (Santa Muerte). It comes from a mixture of elements of the Native American cult. The authorities do not recognize the cult and persecute it, nor is it recognized by the Catholic Church because it is associated with dark rituals.
Facts About Mexico

The great and terrible Spanish slang with examples from life

Imagine that you learned Spanish at the institute for a long time, read your textbook diligently, and do all the exercises without peeking at the answers. And then you come to Madrid, for example, and you get a barrage of ”hostias”, “cojones”, “coñazos”, “horteras”, and so on (all the words mean “someone who is very annoying”). There was no such thing in the textbook; you have to grasp the general meaning from the context and, after a few bumps, of course, sooner or later, you will distinguish “caña” from “coña”, or even from “coño”… but let’s go over everything in order.

To use slang or not – it’s personal business, but to know what this or that phrase means is very important if you want to understand Spaniards, their movies, and street culture freely.

  • “Chido“ – nice, cool.
  • “Estar chalado” – “estar loco” – to be crazy, out of your mind.
  • “Tío” – dude, man.
  • “Curro” – “trabajo” – work.
  • “Dar el coñazo” – “ser aburrido” – to be boring, annoying.
  • “Cojonudo” – “genial”, “increíble” – cool, amazing.
  • “Chungo” – “malo”, “de mierda” – bad, disgusting.
  • “Plata” – “dinero” – money.
  • “Flipar” – “fascinar”, “encantar” – like very much.
  • “Qué fuerte” – “qué impactante” – wow!
  • “Estár de coña” – “bromear” – make fun of.
  • “Tener mala hostia” – “mal carácter” – have a bad temper or mood.
  • “Salir de marcha” – “salir de fiesta” – hang out.
Spanish Slang

Examples of Mexican Slang

Have you already written down these new words? No? Then hurry up and put them in your personal dictionary, or you’ll easily lose them and the effect of reading the article will be reduced.

  • Let’s make these phrases more fun and understandable! Imagine you’re driving and someone cuts you off at a red light. Instead of just shouting “¡está loco!” (he’s crazy!), you can spice up your vocabulary by flailing your arms and yelling “Este tío está chalado” (this dude’s gone bonkers!). But who has time to dwell on that when you’re “hurrying al curro” (rushing to work)?
  • At work, your boss is always “da el coñazo” (giving you a hard time). To keep things interesting, you eavesdrop on your coworkers’ conversations.
  • Juan went to a Maná concert yesterday and thought it was “fue un concierto cojonudo” (a kickass concert).
  • Someone’s complaining about their job conditions again and wants to quit because things have been “se ha puesto muy chunga” (super tough) for a while now. Salaries are late, no new projects, and the cash flow is running low.
  • Javier just moved into a new apartment that’s “está que te cagas” (freakin’ awesome). He’s stoked about the massive windows – “me flipan las ventanas” (I’m crazy about the windows), which he shares with Juan.
  • Beatriz had a fight with her boyfriend and vents to her friend Sandra: “¡Qué fuerte! ¿Estás de coña?” (That’s insane! Are you kidding me?) Sandra can barely get a word in edgewise as Beatriz rants.
  • Suddenly, the boss, who’s “tiene mala hostia” (in a bad mood), returns, and everyone clams up. The workday goes on, but at night, the friendly staff are “de marcha” (ready to party).
Mexican slang

Common Mexican slang

Mexican slang or different vocabulary has spread to all Spanish-speaking countries. Moreover, these expressions can now be found everywhere, thanks to the Internet and the process of globalization.

  • “Ándale” – hurry up.
  • “Apapachar” – to hug gently.
  • “Fres”a, which translates to “strawberry,” means a pampered person or a major.
  • “Güey” -a friend, a guy (to address someone or to talk about someone).
  • “Me vale Madre” – “I don’t care”(but in a rather strong version, not always decent).
  • “No mames!” – “Ooh, can’t!” when something has happened and you can’t believe it.
  • “Orale!” – “Hurry up” or “okay” when you agree to do something.
  • “Padrisimo” – excellent, excellent.
  • “Pendejo” – stupid.
  • “Pinche!” – mean.
  • “Güero” – fair-haired, light-skinned man but in contrast to the Indians.
  • “Chela” – beer.

What is “Mom” and “Dad” in Mexico

In Mexico, parents call their children “Papa” and “Mama.” What meaning do Mexicans attach to these words?

It turns out that in Mexico, the words “mom” and “dad” are also slang. My mother-in-law calls her sons when she wants to emphasize her love and affection for them. In this case, “dad” (or “mom”) is one of the nice words used in Mexico, along with the words: “my love”, “my sky” (“mi amor”, “mi cielo”), and others.

The fact is that the words “mom” and “dad” refer to our parents. And since we love our parents the most, to call someone “daddy” or “mommy” is to express all our love and appreciation for them. Husband and wife can also call each other “mom” or “dad” (and in Mexico, that’s normal).

These expressions have different connotations, depending on the situation. For example, a waiter in a restaurant may call you “daddy” or “mommy” to emphasize his respect for you but in no way to express his love. In this case, it is more of a polite form of address (but at the same time not too formal, like “señor” or “senora”). Here, the waiter wants to be your friend, so he prefers this word to others.

Probably many of you have heard of the Spanish words “mamacita” and “papacito” , which means “mommy” and “daddy”. As in English, these words can have different meanings. In a family, they are tender words that express love and affection. Not only parents but also children are called this way (similar to the example above). But when you hear «mamacita» or «papacito» from strangers on the street, it’s more likely to be rude and vulgar. It all depends on the context.

There are also the words “papito”, and “mamita”. You can also hear it from a stranger when a person is forced to refuse you: – “I’m sorry, papito, but the shoe size you need isn’t there”. 

What is Mom and dad in Mexico

Here is some more of the Mexican slang

  • “Me vale queso” – I don’t care.
  • “Que onda?, Que rola?” – What’s up? What’s up?
  • “Tener lana” – to be in the money.
  • “No mames!” – Come on!

In Mexico, all these words are called “palabras coloquiales” or “modismos”: colloquial words or slang.

This is not a complete list of commonly used expressions in Mexico, but hopefully, it will help you navigate the conversation. The only thing is, don’t use these expressions in other Spanish-speaking countries, especially if you don’t know the language very well – you just won’t be understood, at best… Still, you have to be more careful with slang.

Learning new vocabulary

A lot of Mexican phrases and expressions have been presented in this article. You were probably unfamiliar with some of them.

To learn all of these terms, just reading them once is insufficient.

We suggest that you add all of the new words you encounter here to your personal dictionary and learn them properly. For example, you might make a language card that looks like this:

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Click on the image to add it to your dictionary

It is important to work on expanding your vocabulary on a regular basis. Don’t ignore this activity.

This is the only way you will be able to learn a foreign language eventually.


We understand that it is impossible to learn all the slang in one article – the number of words used by native speakers is large.That’s why we created a free material that will help you in learning the language as a whole.

Thanks to the information in the material the process of learning a language becomes consistent (it’s easier to memorize new words, phrases and repeat the passed material). 

The guide is absolutely free, so click the “get it now” button and get access to it right away.

Langavia Team

We help people to learn new languages and expand their vocabulary effectively.

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