Welcome to Spanish 201 and this is a vocabulary guide where I will list a whole bunch of adjectives for you to use! Struggling with adjectives? Check out my post The Position of Adjectives to learn more about how adjectives work and how they are positioned in Spanish.
Here are some adjectives for you to use in your Spanish speaking.
I very rarely use content sources, however; this post is well established and extremely useful. Here are the 50 most commonly used adjectives, with some examples, sourced from here
1. lindo (pretty)
Remember those beautiful blue eyes?
¡Qué lindos que son! (They’re so pretty!)
2. feo (ugly)
I don’t think anyone ever talks about ugly eyes, but there’s plenty more in life that can be feo, such as the appearance, behavior or performance of someone or something.
3. feliz (happy)
Just like Pharrell Williams.
Remember there’s a difference between estoy feliz (I’m temporarily happy) and soy feliz (I’m a happy person). Pharrell is arguably both.
For more on the differences between temporary and permanent happiness—from a grammatical point of view, that is, we’re not getting existential on you
4. triste (sad)
You can’t be happy all the time! Here’s how to talk about feeling down.
Todos nos sentimos tristes cuando termina la canción de Pharrell. (We all feel sad when Pharrell’s song is over).
5. alto (tall)
Now we’re getting into some physical properties here.
Algunas personas en el video de Pharrell son altas. (Some people in Pharrell’s video are tall.)
6. bajo (short)
Not everyone’s the same, so you need to know how to describe a spectrum of traits.
Y algunas son bajas. (And some are short.)
7. grande (big)
Just like Pharrell’s smile. Note that normally adjectives ending in -e are the same for both for masculine and feminine nouns.
Tiene una sonrisa muy grande. (He has a very big smile.)
8. pequeño (small)
We should take un pequeño recreo (a small break) from talking about Pharrell.
9. simple (simple)
This one really is simple.
Just take care to get your pronunciation right. Unlike in English, the Spanish word has stress on the beginning of the word. While in English, you pronounce this word sim-PLE (or sim-PULL, phonetically), in Spanish, the stress is on the first syllable, making it SIM-ple (or SEEM-pley).
It can also take on the connotation of “bland” or “lacking” in something, particularly when describing food.
10. complicado (complicated)
It’s not complicado at all to figure out this word.
11. divertido (fun)
But it’s divertido to work out this one.
Just like the word for “happy”—and many others—whether you use ser or estar before this adjective can change its meaning. See here:
Juan es divertido. (Juan is fun.)
The above means that Juan is a fun person in general. Remember that ser is used to talk about general situations, properties or things that are always true.
Meanwhile, Juan está divertido hoy (Juan is fun today) suggests he isn’t normally so fun, but today is an exception. The use of estar in this version of the statement highlights the temporary nature of Juan being fun.
12. aburrido (boring)
If you think adjectives are boring, you’re wrong. Stick with it.
No me digas que es aburrido. (Don’t tell me it’s boring.)
Once again, note that the use of ser or estar can modify the meaning of this adjective, albeit in a slightly different way. Something or someone can be boring (es aburrido), or can be bored (está aburrido).
13. rico (rich)
This can be used to talk about rich people, for example:
Ella es rica. (She is rich.)
You can also say food is rico, for example:
La sopa está rica. (The soup is delicious.)
Note the different use of ser and estar with these different meanings. You’ve got one use that’s describing a property of a person’s being, and another describing a temporary taste being perceived at the moment.
14. pobre (poor)
Like in English, you can talk about someone being poor, as in not having any money.
La chica es muy pobre. (The girl is very poor.)
Or you can use in an exclamation or expression of sympathy for someone:
¡Pobre chica! (Poor girl!)
This is suggesting she’s not having a good time, although she may in fact be rica in the context of wealth.
15. delicioso (delicious)
An alternative to saying food is rico is delicioso.
16. repugnante (disgusting)
This is a strong word, and you can always add a disgusted face for extra effect.
17. inteligente (intelligent)
You don’t have to be inteligente to work this one out.
18. tonto (stupid)
Estúpido is also a word meaning the same thing, but it’s actually not that commonly used.
19. nuevo (new)
You got that one, right?
20. viejo (old)
You can say “los viejos” to casually refer to your parents, although they might not like it.
This isn’t generally considered to be offensive or rude, but that all depends on the parents.
21. abierto (open)
As in English, this can refer to a person.
Es una persona muy abierta. (He/she is a very open person.)
Or it can refer to a shop or establishment.
La tienda está abierta hasta las 5 de la tarde. (The shop is open until 5 in the afternoon).
Again, note the difference in the use of the verbs ser and estar.
22. cerrado (closed)
The shop could also be closed late, if it’s in a country that takes its siesta seriously.
La tienda está cerrada hasta las 5 de la tarde. (The shop is closed until 5 in the afternoon.)
23. cansado (tired)
Did someone say siesta?
De repente estoy cansada. (I’m suddenly tired.)
Cansado isn’t to be confused with casado, which means married.
24. despierto (awake)
This is exactly what you don’t want to be during siesta time.
25. caluroso (hot)
The reason for the siesta during this sunny time of day.
Está caluroso. (It’s hot.)
26. frío (cold)
You can use this to talk about the lower temperatures on the thermometer.
No hay siesta en países más fríos. (There’s no siesta in colder countries.)
27. caro (expensive)
¿Son más caros los países sin siesta? (Are the countries with no siesta more expensive?).
28. barato (cheap)
Answers on a postcard please.
¿O son más baratos? (Or are they cheaper?)
29. rápido (fast)
I’m sure you can learn the word for fast muy rápido if you didn’t know it already.
30. lento (slow)
But remember to slow down if this list is too much information all at once.
Este mundo necesita más movimientos lentos. (This world needs more slow moves.)
31. loco (crazy)
We all know this one already, thanks to Ricky Martin and his “Livin’ la Vida Loca.”
32. tranquilo (tranquil)
This can also be used as a suggestion or order, in addition to an adjective meaning “calm” or “tranquil.”
If you say “tranquilo” to someone who’s worked up, you’re telling them to calm down. It’s a pleasant way to say this and be reassuring, when said in a calming tone.
33. fuerte (strong)
If you go to the gym every day, you’ll get fuerte, hopefully.
34. débil (weak)
But if you still feel un poco débil (a little weak), don’t be too hard on yourself.
35. enfermo (sick)
You could be un poco enfermo (a little sick) or you could just need more time, and perhaps a gym instructor.
36. sano (healthy)
As you might have guessed, this can also mean “sane,” in reference to mental/emotional health. Either way, it’s definitely a compliment or a positive thing to be.
37. dulce (sweet)
This isn’t just about flavor, it can also be a compliment, referring to someone’s sweet nature.
Eres dulce. (You’re sweet.)
Or the person talking might be confusing you with that big sticky bun you’re standing next to—and instead say está dulce, which is used to describe a sweet taste. Again, note how using ser and estar can change the meaning of the adjective from a permanent personality trait to the temporary flavor of a food.
38. salado (savory)
Salado more directly means “salty,” but can describe any savory dish. It’s also used in a number of colloquialisms around Latin America, so keep an ear out for those!
39. limpio (clean)
Let’s hope the place where you’re buying the sticky buns is limpio and barato too, why not?
40. sucio (dirty)
Just a suggestion.
Si es un poco sucio, deberías ir a otro lado. (If it’s a little dirty, you should probably go somewhere else).
41. seco (dry)
Hopefully es un día seco (it’s a dry day), so you won’t get mojado on the way to the other bakery.
42. mojado (wet)
I already gave this one away, didn’t I? This word is useful if it does start raining.
43. injusto (unfair)
Did your favorite sweater get mojado?
And your friend stole your umbrella and ran away?
¡Qué injusto! (How unfair!)
44. justo (fair)
Definitely not fair.
No es justo. (It’s not fair.)
That friend shouldn’t have done that under any circumstances.
45. vacío (empty)
What your life’s gonna feel like once you finish this post.
46. lleno (full)
What your vocabulary notebook’s gonna look like once you write down all these great new words.
47. delgado (thin)
I can’t say how you’ll look when you’ve finished this. Probably the same as when you started.
48. gordo (fat)
Maybe your notebook will be más gordo if you download this post as a PDF, print it and stick it in your notebook?
49. bueno (good)
Just in case you’d forgotten the basics after learning all these new words.
50. malo (bad)
Ditto. It’s always good to remember these essentials!