13 Tagalog Words You Just Can’t Translate in English


They just don’t mean the same


Tagalog slang that’s short for best friend but can be used to address anyone and everyone. Also synonymous to ‘friend,’ ‘sis’ and ‘te


Bes, ganda mo today


Can mean anything. Usually used at the end of a sentence to express exaggeration or to tell a joke. Other variations include, echos, choz, cheka (pronounced che-kuh)


Crush niya kasi ako, chos!


Used to describe all sorts and levels of romantic feelings, i.e., butterflies in one’s stomach, romantic bliss, in a state of cloud nine


Nag-text na siya, kinikilig ako


Originally a hashtag, hugot is a Pinoy word that expresses deep emotions, secret feelings or sentiments. Can be used along with a song lyrics, quote or social media status


Saw your Facebook status, dami mong hugot


Essentially means unlucky or unfortunate in the love department


Lahat kinakasal na. Ako lang ba ang sawi?


What you feel when you’re unhappy about what your S.O., friend or relative did but you’re not exactly angry at them either


I’m a bit tampo that she didn’t come to my birthday


Can literally mean enough but is more often used in place of things or feelings you just can’t express


Basta yun na yun


A term that combines affection, sweetness and tenderness


He always holds my hand, lambing niya ‘no?


Literally, it means 'only' but is also used with the word wala (nothing) to express feelings or thoughts you just can’t put into words


You: Beach tayo

Friend: Ano meron?

You: Wala lang


The feeling you get when you want to pinch someone because of severe cuteness or inis (a state of feeling annoyed or angry)


Ang cute ng anak mo, nakaka-gigil!


Used to describe someone annoying but can also be used in a positive way. In which case, it means funny or playful


Kulit ng jokes mo!


A term used to describe someone tacky or who likes things that are masa. Can be positive or negative, depending on context


Ang cool niya, she can be sosyal or jologs at the same time


More negative than positive, harot means mischievous or boisterous, or in verb form, to flirt with someone intensely or excessively


Masiyado ka touchy, harot mo girl