20+ Cute Korean Words That Are Total Vibes

Bodhi Ramos9 min
Created: Jun 24, 2024Last updated: Jul 3, 2024
Cute Korean Words

If you’re anything like us, you’ve probably found yourself lost in the world of K-dramas, K-pop, and the irresistible charm of Korean culture. But let’s be real: knowing just “annyeong” and “saranghae” isn’t going to cut it when you want to impress your friends or dive deeper into the beauty of the language. In today’s article, we’ll provide you with a list of the most cute Korean words that you can use in daily conversations.

10 Amazing Korean Words Without English Equivalents

Sometimes, it is really difficult to describe something, whether an emotion, feeling, or simply an object, using only one word. Especially when you’re trying to translate a term from a foreign language. But the good news is that you can expand your vocabulary with some beautiful Korean words. And that’s precisely what we’re going to do right now. Take a look at these astonishing terms that will come in handy.

  • 눈치 – [n u n tɕʰ i] – noon-chi.

Have you ever walked into the room and instantly sensed the vibe? If so, it might as well mean you have a strong noon chi. This term describes keen awareness or sensitivity to social cues and atmospheres. It is almost the art of deeply understanding people’s emotions and feelings that allows you to adapt to the situation. In layman’s terms, it is the ability to read the room without trying too hard.

  • 썸타다 – [s* ʌ m tʰ ɑ d ɑ] – sseom-ta-da.

Okay, The Office fans, gather around; we have a perfect word for you! Think about Jim and Pam circa the second-third seasons. They share secret glances, cute moments, and undeniable chemistry, but they haven’t labeled it yet. And that’s exactly what you can describe using one of these cute Korean words with deep meaning – sseom-ta-da. Some people believe that the term came from the English word “something,” and it describes a bit of an awkward phase when you’re not yet lovers but more than friends already.

  •  띠동갑 – [t* i d o ŋ ɡ ɑ p] – tee-dong-kab.

What’s your zodiac sign according to the Chinese horoscope? We, Promova, were born in 2019, the Year of the Pig. Therefore, we have some wonderful tee-dong-kabs, or zodiac twins – people who were born under the same zodiac sign (though, of course, they are older). For us, it’s Sir Elton John, Stephen King, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and many, many others. And who’s your tee-dong-kab? Tell us in the comments, we’re eager to know!

  • 애교 – [ɛ ɡ jo] – aegyo.

Think of the way Jimin from BTS can switch from a fierce performer to the cutest ball of fluff with just a smile and a wink. That’s aegyo in action! It is one of those cute words in Korean that is actually adorable. It is all about that sweet, charming, and often irresistibly cute behavior that makes everyone go “aww!” Think of it as the ultimate display of affection, often used to win hearts, get out of trouble, or spread joy.

  • 눈치가 없다 – [n u n t ʃʰ i k a ʌ p s t a] – nunchiga eopda.

A few words ago, we told you about noon-chi, someone who can perfectly read the room. So, this term is completely the opposite of that. It describes a totally socially oblivious person who’ll never get your hints and who’ll never read the air. The best example is probably Joey from Friends. He’s absolutely adorable, but every so often, he is completely clueless (we’re not complaining, though, that’s what we love him for!).

  • 엄친아 – [ʌ m t ʃʰ i n a] – eom-chin-a.

Okay, now let’s talk about one of our favorite Korean cute words, the ultimate paragon of perfection in Korean culture. This term literally translates to “my mom’s friend’s son.” You know the type – this mythical creature who seems to have it all together, excelling in every possible way, making your parents wish you were more like them. They’re the ones who are acing exams, winning competitions, and still finding time to volunteer, all while being charming and polite. They’re typically the yardstick by which all parents measure success.

  • 효도 – [h j o t o] – hyodo.

Now, let’s quit kicks and giggles for a moment as we will tell you one of the deepest Korean words with beautiful meanings. This term describes a decision to dedicate yourself to your parents and take care of them till their last breath. It is quite an umbrella term because it can mean anything you do to show your parents your gratitude and love – from helping them with chores to taking them to their favorite restaurant.

  • 개이득 – [k ɛ i t ɨ k] – gaeideuk.

And we’re back to kicks and giggles! This expression is more of a slang, popular among Korean youth. If you try to translate it verbatim, you’ll see that it consists of two words with absolutely nothing in common: 개 (Gae) – dog, and 이득 (ideuk) – profit. However, when used together, they make perfect sense, meaning something like a great catch, a huge gain, or a great deal.

  • 답답하다 – [d a p d a p h a d a] – dapdapada.

We do love this language because it might be incredibly cute sometimes, and there are numerous pretty words in Korean that actually convey not-so-pretty meanings. For example, this one perfectly sums up that frustrating, suffocating feeling when things just aren’t going your way. It’s like being stuck in traffic on a hot day with no air conditioning – ugh, so dapdapada!

  • 어이없다 – [ʌ i ʌ p s d a] – eoieopda.

Let’s conclude our list of beautiful words in Korean with this expression. It is more of an exclamation you might use in those moments of utter disbelief and confusion. This word is quite versatile since it conveys several meanings – “unbelievable,” “what the heck,” “beyond common sense,” etc. So the next time something leaves you shaking your head in disbelief or laughing uncontrollably at the absurdity of life, make sure to use this exciting Korean term!

7

Korean Word for Beautiful and Beyond

In the Korean language, there are quite a lot of ways to describe beauty. And, of course, we are ready to share them with you! Here’s the list of our favorite beautiful words to expand your vocabulary even further.

  • 미남 – [miːnam] – beautiful (describing a man).

그는 정말 미남이다. (Geuneun jeongmal minamida.) – He is really handsome.

  • 미녀 – [minjʌ] – beautiful (describing a woman).

이 배우는 아름다운 미녀로서 유명합니다. (I baeuneun areumdaun minyeoroseo yumyeonghamnida.) – The actress is known for her beauty.

  • 시대를 초월한 아름다움 – [ɕidɛɾɯɭɯ t͡ɕʰowɔɭhan aɾɯmdawɯm] – timeless beauty.

그 그림은 시대를 초월한 아름다움을 담고 있습니다. (Geu geurimeun sidaereul chowolhan areumdawumeul damgo itsseumnida.) – That painting embodies timeless beauty.

  • 아름다운 – [aɾɯmdaun] – beautiful.

오늘 날씨가 정말 아름다워요. (Oneul nalssiga jeongmal areumdawoyo.) – The weather today is really beautiful.

  • 화려한 – [hwaɾjʌhan] – splendid, magnificent.

그녀는 화려한 드레스를 입고 나왔습니다. (Geunyeoneun hwaryohan deureseureul ipgo nawassseumnida.) – She came out wearing a splendid dress.

  • 아찔한 – [at͡ɕ͈ilhan] – dizzying, breathtaking.

그 여행지에서 보는 일몰은 아찔할 정도로 아름답습니다. (Geu yeohaengjieseo boneun ilmol-eun atjilhal jeongdolo areumdabseumnida.) – The sunset seen from that travel destination is breathtakingly beautiful.

  • 황홀한 – [hwaŋholhan] – enchanting, rapturous.

그 음악회는 황홀한 분위기 속에서 진행되었습니다. (Geu eumakhoeneun hwangholhan bunwigi sog-eseo jinhaengdoeeossseumnida.) – The concert was held in an enchanting atmosphere.

  • 미모가 넘치는 – [mimoɡa nʌmt͡ɕhineun] – overflowing with beauty.

그 배우는 미모가 넘치는 외모를 가졌습니다. (Geu baeuneun mimoga neomchineun oemoreul gajossseumnida.) – That actor has an appearance overflowing with beauty.

  • 근사한 – [ɡɯnsahan] – exquisite.

그의 옷차림은 항상 근사하고 세련되었습니다. (Geuui otchalin-eun hangsang geunsahago seryeondoeossseumnida.) – His attire is always exquisite and refined.

  • 무척이나 아름다운 – [mucʰʌɡina aɾɯmdaun] – incredibly beautiful.

그 풍경은 무척이나 아름다워서 매번 놀라게 합니다. (Geu punggyeong-eun mucheogina areumdawoseo maebeon nollage hamnida.) – That scenery is so incredibly beautiful that it astonishes me every time.

  • 눈부신 – [nunbusin] – dazzling, radiant.

그녀의 웃음은 눈부신 매력을 지니고 있습니다. (Geunyeoui useum-eun nunbusin maeryeog-eul jinigo itsseumnida.) – Her laughter holds a dazzling charm.

Memorize More Pretty Korean Words with Promova

Expanding vocabulary is an inevitable part of learning Korean or any other foreign language. The more words you know, the easier you can communicate, comprehend, and express yourself. However, to take your fluency to the next level, you also need to pay attention to other skills, like reading, listening, and writing. Luckily, there is an amazing resource that allows you to have both. And, of course, we’re talking about the Promova application. After installing the app, you access:

  • exciting interactive lessons created by language professionals;
  • accessibility and convenient interface to make your experience as pleasant as possible;
  • multiple language choices so that you can learn Korean, French, English, Spanish, Arabic, and other languages;
  • bite-sized learning approach, so you’ll never feel overwhelmed by tiring materials.

And much more! Our app is available for iOS and Android devices, so you can quickly install it and access all the materials within a few seconds. And, of course, that’s not all the benefits! Get the Promova app today, and you’ll see it for yourself.

Conclusion

All in all, these Korean sayings and words might not be as widespread as some other ones, but they are definitely worthy of your attention. We hope that with today’s article, you’ve not only expanded your vocabulary but also taken a glimpse of a beautiful and enchanting Korean culture. And that’s all for now! We’re eagerly waiting to see you in the next article.

FAQ

How can I incorporate these words into my Korean language learning journey?

You might not believe it, but it will actually take you a few steps. For starters, you need to focus on several words or phrases you like the most. Step two – familiarize yourself with the context and the meaning of the word or expression to ensure you’ll be using it correctly. And finally – just use it! The more you do it, the more natural it will become. After successfully conquering the first words, you can move to the next ones, repeating the steps.

Why should I learn these beautiful words in Korean?

Although it is not the first thing you should learn when you’re just starting your studying journey, it might be quite beneficial. Learning these words will expand your vocabulary and immerse yourself more in Korean culture. It will become much easier for you to communicate with locals, and it will definitely positively impact your cognitive functions.

What are some tips for remembering and using these Korean words effectively?

Here are a few! Incorporate the words into daily practice by creating flashcards, using them in sentences, or associating them with memorable experiences. The more you use them, the more natural they’ll become in your vocabulary.

What are some mistakes to avoid when using these beautiful Korean sayings?

We can think of a few ones, both grammatical and personal. For instance, when it comes to language, the most common issues are mispronunciation, using the wrong gender, or using a word in an inappropriate context (like describing something mundane as dazzling). However, it is also essential to always consider the formality levels, stay polite, and avoid overusing compliments.

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