Swear words are one of those things that aren’t taught in school. We understand why. They might come across as offensive and violent.

But the truth is that they’re also part of a language since native people use them regularly. And they don’t necessarily always use it to offend someone. Swear words are also used as general expressions when something goes wrong.

If you want to truly feel the power of a cuss word, then you should learn some Spanish swear words. Since many different countries and cultures speak this language, there are many swear words in Spanish.

Some are more popular than others, depending on the region. Mexico is one of those countries that uses them frequently, basically every day.

15 Mexican Swear Words

1. Chinga tu madre

“Chingar” is like “bothering” but it sounds meaner than just “molestar”, which is also to bother. And “madre” is mom. So this phrase is like saying “go bother your mother”. But it’s used in an offensive way when you’re angry at someone.

Another way of saying it is: “chinga tu mais”.

For example: if a person is saying something mean to you, you can answer with “chinga tu madre”.

2. Chingada madre

This is very much like the one above. But it’s more used as a frustration phrase when something goes wrong. It isn’t used against someone.

For example: Let’s say you’re rushing to the airport, and when you arrive the plane has left you behind. You could express your anger at the situation by saying: “chingada madre”.

3. Pendejo (a)

This could be used as an insult to someone or even at yourself. It’s like saying someone is dumb, stupid or a scoundrel.

For example: If your heartbroken friend is telling you how her boyfriend cheated on her, you could tell her he is a “pendejo”. Because you believe he is a dumb and shameless person for doing that to her.

Or if you accidentally hit yourself against a piece of furniture, a common Mexican expression would be: “¡qué pendejo!”. You’re basically insulting yourself for not paying attention. This word against yourself comes as an instinct.

4. Idiota

This literally means “idiot”.

5. Estúpido (a)

This means “stupid”.

6. Culero

This means “asshole”.

7. Valer madres

This can be used when you don’t care about something. It’s like saying “I don’t give a shit”. For example: If your mom is scolding you for getting a five on the exam, you could say: “me vale madres”. Though it would probably be worse.

It can also be used when talking about somebody else that doesn’t care about something. For example: “A él le vale madres el examen” (He gives a shit about the exam). Or “Le vale madres el trabajo” (He/She gives a shit about work).

Or it can be used like “valió madres”, which is when something went wrong or got destroyed. For example: “El auto chocó y valió madres” (The car crashed and went to shit). Or: “Reprobé el examen, ya valí madres” (I failed the exam; I’ve gone to shit).

8. Wey

This is a tricky one, because it can be used in a friendly way or as an insult.

A lot of people call their friends “wey”. For example: “Qué onda, wey, ¿cómo estás?” (What’s up dude, how are you?).

But it can also be used as a way of calling someone dumb or stupid. For example: if somebody crashes your car, you can say: “qué te pasa, wey?” (What’s wrong with you?)

You’ll understand the meaning based on the situation, the tone, and your relationship with the other person.

9. Cabrón

This is like calling someone a dumbass or an asshole.

For example: “Ese señor hace fraude, es bien cabrón” (That man commits fraud; he’s a real asshole).

10. Vete a la chingada

This is like “go to hell”.

11. Ojete

This is another way of insulting someone else. It’s like “asshole”.

For example: “¡Eres un ojete!” (You’re an asshole!)

12. Hijo de la fregada

This is like saying “son of shit”. It’s used when somebody is truly a mean person.

For example: When someone bullies people, you can say he is a “hijo de la fregada”.

13. Pinche

“Pinche” is the word to describe the person that helps the main chef at a restaurant. But it’s also a very common Mexican swear word. It’s used against other people.

It’s used to downgrade someone, like telling them they’re worth nothing. In fact, sadly a lot of people use it to degrade people that have jobs that others consider inferior. For example, they say: “Eres un pinche zapatero” (You’re a fucking cobbler).

But it can also be used to downgrade any person you’re fighting with or you dislike. They usually use it with another word or insult. For example: “Eres un pinche idiota”. (You’re a fucking idiot).

It’s also used to describe people that are really mean. For example: “La gente es bien pinche” (People are real assholes).

14. No mames / No chingues

These expressions are used when you’re surprised or shocked or when something goes wrong.

Especially “no mames” is used for both good or bad things. For example: If your mom gives you a brand-new car for your birthday, your immediate expression could be: “¡No mames!” Or if a friend of yours is fired, you could also use this phrase as an expression of shock.

Usually “no chingues” is more for bad things. It can be used as an expression when something bad happens, like “no mames”. For example: if you’re watching the news and they pass an accident, you can say: “No chingues!”

15. Imbécil

It’s used to call someone a fool or a moron. It’s used for someone that is dumb or mean.

For example: if somebody fails a subject, you could tell that person he/she is an “imbécil”. Though, of course, it’s not the nicest thing to say. Or if somebody insults you, you can say he/she is an “imbécil”.

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Mexicans also use a lot of normal words as insults. Such as “animal” (animal), “perra” (dog/bitch), zorra (female fox/bitch), and “bruja” (witch). And there are many other words that Mexicans use on a daily basis to express their anger and frustration.

If you want to sound like a true native, or understand locals so they don’t fool you, you should take TruFluency Spanish classes. Our native Spanish tutors will teach you useful things to truly understand native speakers. Plus, all of our classes are customized to your language goals and needs.

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